Studying Gargoyles and Grotesques Gargoyles and grotesques were a hallmark of the Gothic period of architecture, which grew popular in Western Europe from the 12th to the late 15th centuries, and which was carried over …

Istanbul, Imperial City

Blue Mosque, Istanbul

Istanbul, Imperial City For more than a thousand years, Constantinople stood as the capital of the Byzantine Empire, surviving numerous attacks and internal rebellions, until the cannons of the Ottoman Empire breached its walls. Constantinople, …

Portuguese in Africa

Colours of West Africa

The Portuguese in Africa The Kingdom of Kongo and the Transatlantic Slave Trade The Kingdom of Kongo was a former kingdom that dominated West Central Africa in the fourteenth century (Heywood, 2009). Located south of …

Five Female Explorers

Women explorers

Five Female Explorers and their Adventures There are many female explorers who have been forgotten or are not as widely remembered as their male counterparts–Gertrude Bell, for example, has been overshadowed by her male colleague, …

Who were the Roman Emperors?

Colosseum

Who led Rome? There are plenty of lead characters that rose to Roman power throughout its empire.  While some of them are very well known, others are less so.  Some ascended to leadership via lineage …

Underground London

Britain's canals and railways

The London Underground Beneath London is another London, a shadowy counterpart still not mapped in its entirety, but in many ways similar to the London above the ground. According to Peter Ackroyd in London Under (Vintage, 2012), “It …

Shetland Islands Discovered Scotland’s Shetland Islands (or simply, Shetland) is a group of more than 100 islands, only 16 of which are inhabited, with a pristine coastline unrivalled in all of the United Kingdom. Its …

The Beginning of Human Civilisation Ancient Greece is well-known as one of the earliest civilizations that contributed significantly to human advancement. “Greece reached heights in almost every area of human learning” (Mark 2013).  Generally speaking, Ancient, …

Queen Victoria’s Britain

Queen Victoria's Britain

Queen Victoria’s Britain (Part 1 of 2) This two-part article on Queen Victoria’s Britain was prepared by one of our Odyssey Program Leaders, Mal Bock. She will be leading this small group tour especially designed …

Queen Victoria’s Britain (Part 2 of 2) This two-part article on Queen Victoria’s Britain was prepared by one of our Odyssey Program Leaders, Mal Bock. She will be leading this small group tour especially designed for senior …

Victorian England Country Life

Victorian Britain Country life

Victorian England Country Life The industrial revolution changed dramatically Victorian England Country life. From the demographic shift in the population commencing the rural -urban drift, to education and the nouveau rich from the industrialisation who …

Soviet Art in Kazakhstan When the Kazakh khanate splintered into three hordes in the early 17th century, they became vulnerable to raids from Mongol tribes, primarily the Dzungars (dson, “left”; gar, “hand”) who formed the left wing …

Paris Leaders & Landmarks

Paris

Paris Leaders & Landmarks   The inhabitants of a place surely influence how it is perceived. Parisian politicians have certainly left their marks on some of France’s most famous landmarks, creating some amazing stories for …

The Bund The Bund, a stretch of historical buildings lining the western bank of the Huangpu River in Shanghai, China (“bund” derives from the Hindustani word band which means “embankment”), was initially a British settlement that at …