Mission San Fernando Rey de Espana

Deep in the north of Los Angeles' San Fernando Valley lies the region's namesake. There, a fairly unassuming complex of adobe-style buildings sits immediately alongside major streets, and if not for a small sign, most passers by wouldn't know that from this area, one of the most populous areas in California was born. Mission San…

Armenian Culture in Glendale, CA

The line at Zankou Chicken in Glendale, California, a northern suburb of Los Angeles, is out the door, even during Covid and social distancing. Taped Xs on the ground indicate where we should stand to keep away from other customers, especially important since we are all salivating. Zankou is known for their rotisserie chicken, served…

Don’t Skip Cyprus

Editor's note: I've never been to Cyprus. When in Israel, I took a short trip to Rodos in Greece instead. This amazing look by Sam Spector makes me want to go to this island as well. For all of Sam's articles here on The Royal Tour, visit his index. For a man who wants to…

Why Luang Prabang Is My Favorite City

Editor's note: it is always a brave thing for a travel writer to use the word "favorite." So it really means something when Sam does so here. Make sure you check out all of his articles for more incredibly destinations! The most annoying question you can ask me: “So, what’s, like, your favorite country you…

The Baha’i Temple of South America

Nestled in the foothills of the Andes mountains, the Baha'i Temple of South America is one of the most unusual-looking buildings I've ever laid eyes on. It's at once organic and otherworldly; it reminds me of the papery exterior of a physalis, or an intergalactic ship from a 60s TV show that crash-lands on earth…

Seville: The Cultural Capital of Spain

Spain is awesome. Let's start with that. Pretty much anywhere you go will be amazing, based on my experience. But for most Americans, a trip to Spain is to Barcelona or Madrid. Both cities are wonderful - check out my Madrid guide here and tune in later for some rad Barcelona content - but they…

Jewish Seville

One of the things I was excited for on my recent trip to Seville, a stunningly beautiful city in Andalusia in the south of Spain, was exploring its Jewish heritage. The city had a Jewish population dating from at least the sixth century, and walking tours of the old Jewish quarter are widely available. In…

Lisbon: Belém

When maritime history meets awesome architecture, the birthplace of a famous food, and cool museums, you know that is a place worth visiting. Belém is a neighborhood in western Lisbon along the Tagus, and combines all of these things. Home to some of the city's elite - and the country's president - Belém is a…