Collected by AFAR Traveler
Marissa Rexer′s Wishlist
128 SW 3rd Ave, Portland, OR 97204, USA
Stumptown is a mainstay in Portland and a must on your list. The latte was one of the best I’ve ever had and the raspberry hazelnut scone was perfect. As I typically do in a new town, I struck up a conversation with the person next to me. There’s...
Yamada, Kutchan, Abuta District, Hokkaido 044-0081, Japan
Kimamaya is the Japanese word for “be yourself,” and the laid-back nine-room hotel in the Niseko ski area encourages you to do just that. Snow Stats With a 600-inch average annual snowfall, Niseko has been called the Whistler of Asia. Kimamaya’s...
E6 80, 9146 Olderdalen, Norway
Situated on the Lyngen Fjord, this timber lodge is well suited for boat skiing. From March through May, a skipper ferries guests to nearby islands, where they hike up peaks and ski back to the beach. From $4,500 per week. 47/ 4762-7853. This...
Malecón, La Habana, Cuba
The malecon (boardwalk), that spans for over 4.5 kms along the coast of Havana, it's a gathering place for people as the sun sets down. The breeze (which combats the otherwise overwhelming heat of the city), the fishing and not least important the...
Everybody knows and adores the refreshing, minty Cuban mojito as well as the piña colada (with or without the two fingers of rum), but not many have tried or know about the canchánchara. I stumbled upon this drink while visiting the Sleeping...
Colón, Santa Clara, Cuba
Santa Clara is most famous for being the city where the last battle of the revolution led by Che Guevara took place. It is the place where Batista’s government was toppled in 1958. On the other side of the square, is our hotel the Santa Clara...
Piedras 234, 11000 Montevideo, Uruguay
Camino La Granja, 12600 Montevideo, Uruguay
The place is not easy to find as there are no signs directing you to it. I came upon the cheese shop while driving from Montevideo to Colonia. You can sample, buy and take home packed queso/ cheese, honey, wine, dulce de leche & more. The owner,...
Montevideo, Montevideo Department, Uruguay
Walking around Montevideo, Uruguay I was amazed at the amount and creativity of the stencil bombs. As a Sta r Wars geek, I particularly enjoyed the R2D2 stencil. Living in Los Angeles, I am accustomed to seeing graffiti everywhere, but I wasn't...
I had one free night in Tokyo—only one chance to connect with a Japanese acquaintance from a dive trip on Midway Atoll 10 years earlier. Our mutual friend, Shintaido master Haruyoshi Fugaku Ito, suggested we meet at the Shinjuku rail station and...
Japan, 〒106-0045 Tokyo, 港区麻布十番１丁目４−６
In addition to the works of Takashi Murakami, this gallery exhibits a lot of manga-inspired art. I go here to see the up-and-coming artists of the Tokyo scene. —Alondra De La Parra This appeared in the March/April 2012 issue.
4 Chome-2-18 Sendagi, Bunkyō-ku, Tōkyō-to 113-0022, Japan
Ameyayokocho The open-air stalls underneath the train tracks were once a haven for criminal transactions. Today they’re a paradise for bargain-hunters looking for such essentials as green tea and dried fish. Don’t miss the labyrinthine underground...
1 Chome-9-2 Higashishinbashi, 港区 Minato-ku, Tōkyō-to 105-0021, Japan
It was a magical surprise to come upon the NI-TELE Really BIG Clock at the Nippon Television Tower. This huge mechanical clock designed by Hayao Miyazaki (creator of many anime classics) plays musical, animated shows five times daily. It's so...
Japan, 〒160-0004 Tōkyō-to, Shinjuku-ku, 新宿区Yotsuya, 1 Chome−1−１１ 陽臨堂ビル 1F
When I took my beautiful wife to Tokyo to celebrate her birthday in March, because we only had three days in town we had to very carefully curate our dining choices. While we did visit an old favourite, most of the restaurants we visited were new...
2 Chome-8-1 Nishishinjuku, Shinjuku-ku, Tōkyō-to 163-8001, Japan
View of Tokyo at dusk as seen from the 54th floor observation deck of the Tokyo Metropolitan Government Building in Nishi-shinjuku. Admission to the observatory is free and well worth it for a fantastic, sweeping view of the Tokyo skyline.
3 Chome-5-1 Marunouchi, Chiyoda-ku, Tōkyō-to 100-0005, Japan
Yurakucho, Chiyoda, Tokyo 100-0006, Japan
Under the tracks of the Yamanote line train, running from Tokyo to Shinbashi stations, you'll find hidden, unique dining experiences. Down here locals serve everything from specialty Japanese cuisines to unique international tastes—Thai, French,...
1 Chome-1-10 Aomi, Kōtō-ku, Tōkyō-to 135-0064, Japan
Even if you only have a few days in Tokyo, I recommend taking the boat to Odaiba. The boat itself looks like a futuristic James Bond space vessel. Catch the boat from Asakusa (the area famous for Senso-ji, Tokyo's large Buddhist temple) and take...
6 Chome-10-1 Roppongi, Minato-ku, Tōkyō-to 106-0032, Japan
Kapital is a really cool clothing chain known for its denim. They have two shops in Roppongi Hills—Kapital Duffle and Kapital Legs. I always pick up tabi, these handmade split-toe socks. They are split between the big toe and other toes and are...
Shibuya, Tokyo, Japan
Shibuya is a center of Japanese fashion, culture, color, noise, and light. Harajuku girls? They're in Shibuya. Manga? Find it in Shibuya. Biggest scramble crossing in the world? Sit at the Starbucks in Shibuya and marvel at the madness below. You...
4 Chome-13 Jingumae, Shibuya, Tokyo 150-0001, Japan
When I stumbled upon a pristine vintage Airstream trailer in a tiny lot in one of Tokyo's most expensive neighborhoods, I had no idea what would be inside. I was amazed to find a gem of a café, ironically called Uchu (Space) Café. With no more...
1 Chome-4-15 Nishiazabu, Minato-ku, Tōkyō-to 106-0031, Japan
Much is made of Tokyo’s Michelin stars, particularly the sushi kind—thanks to mass media reviews and documentaries such as “Jiro Dreams of Sushi.” Just about every raw fish fan around the globe is familiar with such big-name sushi eateries as Jiro...
Japan, 〒064-0805 Hokkaidō, Sapporo-shi, Chūō-ku, Minami 5 Jōnishi, 3 Chome, 南５条西３丁目
Enter Ramen Alley near Susukino station and shoulder up to the counter at Aji No Karyu. This small shop seats about 20 and serves up Sapporo-style miso ramen, distinct for the addition of a large slice of butter combined with the thin slices of ...
2 Chome-11-３６ Miyanosawa 2 Jo, Nishi Ward, Sapporo, Hokkaido 063-0052, Japan
I love chocolate factories. When I was a kid, I used to watch musical entitled Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory. I also visited a local chocolate factory as part of a school field trip and I remember warm sweet smell of chocolates and us...
Narita, Chiba Prefecture, Japan
What do you do with a nine-hour layover in Japan? Take the train one stop to downtown Narita, and eat your way around town. I was surprised by how lovely this city was, especially for being so close to the airport. The little cobblestone streets...
1-2 Nakajimachō, Naka-ku, Hiroshima-shi, Hiroshima-ken 730-0811, Japan
A super talented barista in Caffe Ponte near Hiroshima Peace Park inscribed a message of peace and love on my morning latte. For the last 67 years the city of Hiroshima has devoted itself to the causes of peace and nuclear non-proliferation.
2 Chome-11 Nishishinjuku, Shinjuku, Tokyo 160-0023, Japan
From Shinjuku’s bar scene to Roppongi’s polished cigar bars and Shibuya’s all night karaoke, Tokyo nightlife offers something for everyone. Dogenzaka’s Love Hotel Hill is sprinkled with small Love Hotels, Japan’s kitschy themed rent by the hour...
Japan, 〒381-0401 長野県下高井郡山ノ内町平穏６８４５
I left tropical Southeast Asia for Japan in the dead of winter for one reason - to see snow monkeys. I'd always seen pictures like the one above, of zen macaques in steaming hot springs surrounded by snow, and had no idea how accessible they were...
Japan, 〒604-8054 Kyōto-fu, Kyōto-shi, Nakagyō-ku, Higashiuoyachō, 富小路通四条上る西大文字町609番地
What's not to love in a covered arcade, jam-packed with stalls selling pickle, roast fish, toasty rice crackers, fresh fish, grilled meat, every fruit and vegetable, roasted chestnuts, freshly grilled mochi, sashimi on a stick, kushikatsu, green...
28-17 Sarugakuchō, Shibuya-ku, Tōkyō-to 150-0033, Japan
Imagine a whole flea market crammed into one small space. That’s Hollywood Ranch, where I’ve shopped since college for jeans, T-shirts, and even incense. —Kashiwa Sato 81/(0) 3-3463-5668. This appeared in the January/February 2013 issue. Read more...
508 Maynard Ave S, Seattle, WA 98104, USA
At the Seattle Pinball Museum, everything may be behind glass, but nothing is hands-off! The owners have a rotating collection of pinball machines, usually about 30 at a time, ranging from old-timey wooden boxes to modern games with tons of bells...
1428 Post Alley, Seattle, WA 98101, USA
Taking just the 'right' wrong turn on a visit to Pike Place Market can land you in Post Alley, where spearmint, wild cherry, and tropical punch bubble gum drizzles down the window panes and grape, peppermint, and lemon ice gum-cicles form from...
Red Square, Moskva, Russia, 109012
We landed in Moscow at night at 9pm on a cold winters night. After checking into hotel, we asked the hotel staff where Red Square was in reference to the hotel. She told us it was less than a 5 minute walk and the hotel staff said she got off in...
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