Stephen Travels

And he's ready to take you with him.


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Delicacies and History at Píwníca Rajców in Gdansk, Poland

Píwníca Rajców, Gdansk, PolandNight was already falling when I arrived in Gdansk, Poland, so further exploration of the city would have to wait until the next day. For now, I settled at an outdoor table at Píwníca Rajców, the first of many excellent restaurants throughout Poland (although Gdansk remained the best). Eating al fresco became the norm, a wonderful opportunity to enjoy outstanding meals while watching the daily life of local Poles unfold before me. And I enjoyed it all while listening to the sputtering water of the Neptune Fountain and the sounds of some very talented street musicians. Read more>


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Three Days in the World’s First National Park

West Thumb Geyser Basin, Yellowstone National ParkI had wisely chosen early autumn as the time of year to visit Yellowstone National Park. Post–Labor Day, the school year had begun a few weeks before, the summer crowds had dissipated, and the weather had cooled substantially — perfect conditions for spending three full days in the oldest and most diverse national park in the United States. Read more >


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Dining at an Old Favorite in Wichita’s Old Town

Within a couple of blocks from the wonderful Hotel at Old Town in Wichita, Kansas, I found a terrific place for breakfast (Egg Cetera) to start my day, and an equally terrific place for dinner — Larkspur Bistro & Bar — to finish off the day of exploring this historic district with a dinner distinguished by a remarkable fusion of flavors and textures in a warm and friendly setting. Read more >


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50 Candidates, 5 Winners: The Most Beautiful State Capitols in the United States

Missouri State CapitolAs Washington, D.C., continues to fail to deliver meaningful, beneficial change to the vast majority of Americans, state governments step up to fill in this appalling lack of action. From minimum wage increases to environmental legislation, governors and state senators and representatives enact changes on a local level. And many of them around the country get to do that in what is very often the most beautiful building in the capital city of their respective state. From domed cruciforms to tower skyscrapers, from a circular structure to a building that looks like a French palace, U.S. state capitols are brimming with history and run a gamut of architectural styles (some more successfully than others). Read about the top five capitols in the United States >


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Classic Polish Cuisine in a Favorite Polish City

An evening of music from Poland’s greatest composer. A massive square bordered by beautiful buildings with colorful façades. A seat beside arguably the country’s most striking Town Hall. Street performers who provide a lively backdrop. It all melded together seamlessly when I enjoyed a traditional Polish dinner at Pod Fredra in the wonderful city of Wrocław, Poland. Read more >


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Modern Comforts and Historic Flair at Hotel at Old Town in Wichita, Kansas

Hotel at Old Town, Wichita, KansasOld Town in Wichita, Kansas, attracted me right from the start. I explored this revitalized neighborhood by walking along the brick streets, among the brick and native-limestone warehouses from the mid-1800s that have been converted into businesses, restaurants, loft residences, and shops. As its appeal grew, I couldn’t have been more pleased to be staying in the heart of it, at Hotel at Old Town, itself a transformation from the city’s largest warehouse to one of Wichita’s top accommodations. Read more about it >


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Big Flavors in Little Italy in Providence, Rhode Island

My plan for an afternoon in Providence, Rhode Island, was to explore Federal Hill, home of the city’s Little Italy, capping it off with dinner in one of the Italian restaurants there. Along the neighborhood’s main strip, Atwells Avenue, my appetite increased every time I passed by a tempting menu or the opportunity to indulge in some gelato, and inhaled the aromas of pastry or cheese emanating from the grocery stores. Perfectly primed for something extraordinary, I took a seat in Ristorante Il Massimo for a meal at Rhode Island’s best restaurant of 2019. Read more >