Tag Archives: castellanos

8th International Chess Festival “Terre degli Elimi”

Italy is one of our favourite destinations and not long ago we were (again) travelling to this beautiful country, this time to one of its famous islands, Sicily. It was my first time here and I was eager to get to know this place whose calling card is beyond inviting. I had great expectations and was afraid I might come back disappointed, as it usually happens in such situations, but nothing like that! I am only looking forward to my next trip to Sicily where the scenery, the food and people are wonderful.

Our destination was the small, but old and full of history town of Erice, located on top of Mount Erice, at around 750 meters above sea level and overlooking the city of Trapani. I could even say that it seems like a magical place, with its narrow streets, impressive historical monuments and breathtaking views of the island. Throughout the history Erice has been seen as a holy place (also thanks to its particular geographic position) and still holds the remains of numerous churches and cathedrals – no wonder it is known nowadays as “the Mountain of God”.… Read more

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7th Dolomiti Open

After playing in Ortisei, we didn’t say goodbye to Italy or the Dolomites yet, but continued our trip about 130 km to the east, to Forni di Sopra. This might sound like a short distance, but crossing the Alps is anything but easy. Let me give you an idea of our three hours trip:

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Located in the same Dolomites Alpes, Forni di Sopra is a town rich in history. According to Wikipedia, historical references date from 778 AD, but recent archaeological findings indicate that there was already a Carno-celtic settlement here 2500 years ago. As pretty much every town within the Alps, this one is also a popular destination during the skiing season. However, don’t expect it to turn into a ghost-town in the summer! The main attraction is the great number of species of wild flora that grow in the area. Moreover, the natural reserve Parco Naturale delle Dolomiti Friulane that begins at one end of the village is the largest European nature reserve which is neither populated, nor crossed by any roads (Wikipedia).… Read more

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Romanian Individual Championship

Romania’s 2016 chess champions were recently crowned. The tournament was held between 2 and 10 of April in Baile Olanesti, a mountain resort famous for its thermal springs. People of all ages come here to spend a few peaceful days, away from the haste of the city, and use the therapeutic waters to treat different affections.

Located in the Carpathian Mountains and only a few kilometers away from one of Romania’s numerous national parks, it’s no wonder that the scenery was so green and refreshing. The area is home to many protected species, but perhaps the most accessible reservation for the inexperienced hikers (like ourselves) is the two water-lilies lakes that provide a spectacular view when the white and yellow flowers are in bloom. Unfortunately, we didn’t arrive in their season, but still enjoyed the peacefulness of the place.

The battle for the titles was meant to take place over 9 rounds, but it looked like this year the very early leaders remained on top until the end.… Read more

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32nd Cappelle la Grande Open

The Cappelle la Grande Open is one of the most prestigious tournaments in the world and attracts hundreds of chess players every year. Besides being a very strong competition, the organizers do their best to make the players feel welcome and maintain a friendly and professional atmosphere.

Cappelle la Grande is a small village situated in the North of France, but with great love for chess. The tournament has reached its 32nd edition and the officials promise that there are many more to come. The playing venue is the spacious Palais des Arts that is adapted to the players’ needs by the team of volunteers who help throughout the whole event.

While all the action takes place in Cappelle, most of the players stay about 15 minutes away in Dunkerque, the main city in the region and third-largest harbor in France. The distance is nothing to worry about, as the organizers have thought about everything.… Read more

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