Originating in Northern Spain and Southern France, the Basque people comprise one of the oldest ethnic groups in Europe, dating as far back as 5,000 years. Centuries ago they were seafarers and farmers, believed in fascinating mythology, and spoke a unique language called Euskara, mysteriously unrelated to any other languages of Europe. Today, Euskara is spoken by less than 1/3 of Basque people, yet much of their culture and traditions still thrive.
Discover the fascinating city of Bilbao, home to the acclaimed Guggenheim Museum, and the stunning seaside resort of San Sebastián, which boasts more Michelin-starred restaurants per capita than anywhere else in the world. Plus, indulge in pintxos, the Basque version of tapas, as well as the distinctive sparkling white wine known as txakoli. For a true epicurean adventure, you might also consider adding a mouthwatering journey through Bordeaux; a region undeniably rich in flavor, from its world-renowned vineyards to its gourmet cuisine. Contact Travel Planner ChrisRakes@totalexperiencetravel.com for more ideas on best ways to visit and to start planning! 919.589.2437 / 434.333.0837
From a former power station that houses monumental pieces of contemporary art to modern marvels of engineering that are as awe-inspiring on the outside as the art they contain, here’s our personal list for the world’s most spectacular art museums.
GUGGENHEIM, BILBAO, SPAIN
Built in a former shipyard, this titanium, glass and limestone building is one of the most celebrated pieces of architecture in modern times and placed the industrial city of Bilbao firmly on the cultural map. The museum is home to modern and contemporary art from all over the world. Expect irregularly shaped galleries, large glass curtains and unexpected design features.
MUSEUM OF ISLAMIC ART, DOHA, QATAR
Designed by I.M. Pei, the same architect that designed the Louvre’s glass pyramid, the Museum of Islamic Art is a modern masterpiece inspired by ancient Islamic architecture. As the name suggests, the museum holds one of the world’s most impressive collections of Islamic art. From royal treasures dating back to the seventh century to ordinary household objects, every piece in this extraordinary museum tells a story.
TATE MODERN, LONDON, UK
Housed in the former Bankside Power Station, the iconic space is now home to spectacular galleries that include the station’s original turbine hall, the boiler house and oil tanks. The museum is dedicated to international modern and contemporary art. From monumental pieces of sculpture to colorful abstract paintings, you’ll be surprised by the range of exhibitions. Films, performances and workshops are also on offer.
NITEROI CONTEMPORARY ART MUSEUM, RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL
It took five years to build this museum designed by renowned architect Oscar Niemeyer, but this spectacular saucer-shaped structure now hosts one of Brazil’s most important contemporary art collections. Like a film set from a science fiction movie, the galleries hover over Boa Viagem beach. With its panoramic views, the iconic museum is the perfect home for artistic creation and dream-like ideas.
Contact All Inclusive Vacation and Tour Specialist Chris Rakes to learn more and help you get there!
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