The Magic of the Black Forest

Whether you’re seeking to escape the work routine for a couple of days or you’re keened on hiking or mountain walking, the Black Forest (Schwarzwald) in Baden Württemberg, Southwest Germany, is the location to be. I was in Schwarzwald region last weekend. Funny enough, the trip started with landing to Basel airport in Switzerland, going through the French territory in direction of Freiburg which is the gate to Schwarzwald.

Abstractly enough, in only 40 minutes we went through 3 countries-borders which of course are no visible border-lines. Quite exceptional was handing a train ticket in the unusual overcrowed Deutsche Bahn because of Easter Holidays and the local heros, SC Freiburg, were having their home match against Mönchengladbach, which secured them  the stay in the first League (quite unlike Hamburg, as I’m observing from week to week to my surprise.)

It’s a rare event to be squeezed in German trains – due to this unusual event people’s interaction looked closer. Yeah, people looked definitely more relaxed, friendly and happy in this region of Germany.

Wandering around Schwarzwald was refreshing! It’s a huge rectangular region in the length of 160 km and breadth up to 60 km. Train stopped in Hinterzarten, a very beautiful area with neat farmers’ houses, green valleys and wooded hill-tops, a landscape that is nothing but a sweet reminiscence of “Heidi, Girl of the Alps” animation series. (And yes, I learned the German intro jingle: “Heidi, Heidi,  Deine Welt sind die Berge”.)

Hiking through the woods for about 10 km lead to next highlight, Titisee lake, southeast of the next beautiful spot, Schluchsee lake. And so the journey continued the next day, going to Schauinsland, Feldberg, etc. Therefore if you like hiking, Nordic walking, skiing or just want to be in touch with the nature in search inner-you balance, Scharzwarld might be the next place the be!


The Pharrell Williams’ “Happy” epidemic wave is spreading fast in my hometown Tirana. The viral explosion of “Happy” videos worldwide reached the Albanian fans as well. The video comes as a production of Artsmedia and is to be found on YouTube under the hashtag #happyfromtirana. It really made me happy watching it. Simply great! Enjoy!

Lagerfeld: From Runaway-Catshow to Eden Models

He is in town! This time with his gorgeous models coming straight from Eden’s garden. Definitely interesting to check the expo “Feuerbachs Musen – Lagerfelds Models” in the Galerie der Gegenwart, Hamburg. Being Lagerfeld and originally a Hamburg city boy, this expo certainly created a media and advertising buzz in Hamburg. To some degrees also justified except for being relatively a small expo.

As you may notice in the photo collage, the human beauté meets the Greek mythology setting (where eros and sinful beauty go along ) through the artistic lenses of Lagerfeld who’s known not only for his fashionista and designer taste, but also for his eye of photography. What I found exceptionally catchy about Lagerfeld expo? The unusual overwhelming overtake of male models, definitely more appealing to a female and gay audience. One of this rare moments where female models seems to be overpassed by their male counterparts…

From Samurai House to Moroccan Roof Terrace-all possible in today’s Shared Economy

There are many creative ways to tailor your vacation nowadays. The yellow phone book or travel booklet are just a sweet reminder of the squared little world that earlier generations were living in. Search engines or hundreds of websites like, Expedia, etc can offer instantly countless hotel options sorted by price, availability, or you name it. While mainstream search options provide fast and safe response to someone’s holiday getaway, millions of internet users are turning their heads to alternative solution like Airbnb, or Couchsurfing.


Are you young, broke and AWESOME willing to explore the world while in need of a couch to crash at night? Or you’re a lonely settled man with a home and couple of dogs willing to explore the world from the comfort of your own living room? Then you go and join Couchsurfing community – a mega network of 100,000 cities that connects travelers and hosts worldwide. It’s there for you, the options are countless either if you choose to be an open-minded host or a passionate traveller. And if couchsurfing is too much driving in the fast lane for you then try to rent a room or an apartment at Airbnb. All choices available from filthy cheap holes to royal apartments with luxury toiletry.


Surfing through Airbnb rental options from most common cities to exotic ones worldwide reminded me that proverb: “One man’s trash is another man’s treasure” – some place that one person considers worthless may be valuable to someone else. But that’s not important here. What’s quite striking to me is that worldwide booking of so-called sharing economy has broken not only the national borders, but literally has opened the doors to someone else living space.

Through couple of clicks in my i-Pad, at the comfort of my own couch, I made it to traditional Moroccan-styled living room, Brazilian love labeled-bedroom, charming pine room in New Delhi, India, and ended up the virtual evening trip at Samurai’s house in Hokkaido-Japan. How small and connected can the world suddenly come into sight? That’s just a great feeling. Options like Airbnb that defines itself as “a social website that connects people who have space to spare with those who are looking for a place to stay” are more than just an uprise trend. With over 50,000 renters per night and over 4 million bookings worldwide, Airbnb apparently works for many people out there. In addition to offering choices to travelers on budget and hosts willing to make an extra income, this business model is radically transforming the hotel market scene toward a peer to peer approach. How about you? Have you considered Airbnb or Couchsurfing as vacationing option?