The city as a subject for literature came into its own at the beginning of the nineteenth century, as great writers turned their attention to these man-made worlds of both monumental architecture and horrendous slums. Here are the first two entries in an on-going series about cities which have inspired great writers, compiled exclusively for HomeExchange.com readers.

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travel to spain tips

To get to know Spain better, we asked our Spanish representative, Violette, to give us some local knowledge about her home country. This is Spain Unlocked!

How to say hello:

Hola (Hi) or Buenos días (Good morning, more formal)

How to say goodbye:

Hasta luego (See you later) or Adiós (Goodbye)
With other declinations depending on the region of Spain!

How to say thank you:


Currency used:


Tapas in Spain BarcelonaFlickr CC, El Bulli

Favorite national foods:

Made of different regions and climates, Spain presents a big variety of food. Here are only a few examples:

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best museums in the world

They are the resources of our greatest collective knowledge, and as such, libraries are an architectural testament to the strength of the human imagination. Here is a list of our favorite top 10 libraries in the world.

1. New York Public Library
New York, New York

New York Public LibararyFlickr CC, Draelab

Spanning three city blocks, the Beaux-Arts landmark contains nearly 53 million items, and is the third largest library in the world. Filled with mosaics, the Rose Main Reading Room spans nearly two city blocks and contains 42 elongated oaks tables for visitors to sit and marvel.

2. The Library of Alexandria, Egypt
Alexandria, Egypt

Library Of Alexandria, Egypt

Flickr CC, Jonah Bettio

The original Library of Alexandria was one of the Seven Wonders of the World and the epicenter of some of the greatest minds in the ancient world. Rebuilt in 2002, the $220 million dollar library boasts a planetarium, museum, a manuscript restoration lab, art galleries and a conference center that aims to live up to its great predecessor. Read More


The next time you go on a golf vacation or on a vacation where you just want to get in a round or two, wouldn’t it be nice to stay for free in a lovely home right on or near a golf course?

Almost 20,000 of our 65,000+ Listings have indicated their homes as being accessible to golf. All of those homes have courses in the area, and many of them are actually on courses or in country clubs.
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You love to travel, and while your exchange partner gave you tons of places to visit and experience, you wish there was someone there waiting to meet you. Perhaps you’re looking for someone to show you around the city or introduce you to the best places to dine? Here are tips on how to easily meet people while you’re traveling – even before you leave home.

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Where will love find you?

Love appears when you least expect it. We are taught that love at first sight and falling in love over long distances is the stuff of movies and fairy tales. It’s rare that anyone we know would encounter this kind of magical love. So, is it possible to find extraordinary love in an ordinary way, like by exchanging homes? The answer comes in the form of this simple story from one HomeExchange.com member, Margie.
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The #1 home exchange site on the internet just keeps getting better.

You spoke, we listened. The HomeExchange.com team has been busy creating valuable new tools to provide an online experience that is easy, accessible and personalized.

Starting today, you’ll find a major new feature on HomeExchange.com that empowers you to browse Listings from around the world, grouped into areas of interest (like skiing or golf or arts and culture). Searching and browsing for that perfect home exchange is no longer limited.
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