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2700 Dollywood Parks Blvd, Pigeon Forge, TN 37863, USA
Those who have never visited Dollywood may be surprised that Dolly Parton’s namesake attraction is anything but a dusty tourist trap up in the hills—it’s a world-class amusement park with top-notch thrill rides for all ages. From...
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Waynesville, NC 28786, USA
West of Asheville lies the remnants of arboreal splendor. We'd missed the 'peak weekend' of leaf-peeping along the southern end of the Blue Ridge Parkway, which meant that we also missed the heaviest traffic. Autumn vistas don't often come with...
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Highlands, NC 28741, USA
...before the weekend crowds arrive, a bit of leaf-peeping in and around the town of Highlands, North Carolina: at just over 4000', this is one of the highest towns east of the Mississippi. My wife and I had flown back east for family medical...
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Asheville, NC, USA
In the hills above Asheville, NC, the Biltmore House stands as one of the finest examples of Gilded Age architecture. Built by the Vanderbilt family in the 1890's, it is the largest house in the U.S. Entire rooms and ceilings were transplanted...
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Biltmore Ave, Asheville, NC, USA
There's so much good live music in Asheville that the bars can't contain it - I've never been somewhere with such a high quality of street busking (even better than its homophonous sister town, Nashville). Most nights of the week and certainly on...
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Biltmore Estate Dr, North Carolina 28803, USA

A self-guided tour of the Vanderbilt family’s 8,000-acre estate in Asheville, North Carolina, takes you through gardens bursting with roses and azaleas, and past pools filled with koi and pineapple-scented water lilies. The centerpiece is...

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757 Haywood Rd, Asheville, NC 28806, USA
The cinnamon buns are legendary, made with the same local organic flour the bakery uses in its pizza dough. The breads, such as spinach-feta and flax-almond, change daily, with vegan and gluten-free varieties on offer. Grilled cheese sandwiches...
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13 Biltmore Ave, Asheville, NC 28801, USA

Felix Meana and Katie Button, veterans of elBulli in Spain, converted Asheville’s former downtown bus depot into a stylish tapas bar. Curate means to cure oneself, which diners can do with traditional Spanish dishes such as Catalan sausage...

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411 S Gay St, Knoxville, TN 37902, USA
We were just walking up the road, really. We'd been to the tourist information centre, to get our bearings in Knoxville, and we were looking for dinner. Barely two minutes into our walk, we noticed a couple of guys moving sound equipment into a...
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Chimney Rock, NC, USA
After a rigorous walk on the rails coupled with countless, grueling steps.... Cool down at the Hickory Nut Falls. Make sure to bring extra clothes because the temptation to stand at the bottom of the waterfall as the refreshing water cascades over...
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Black Mountain, NC 28711, USA
OK, America has plenty of beautiful little mountain towns. I just happened to catch this one on a quiet, low-season day and I was utterly charmed. The secondhand bookshop was a thing of joy - run by a woman who knew her Dorothy Parker from her...
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Swannanoa, NC 28778, USA
Enjoy being flung around by energetic, enthusiastic partners? You don't? I bet you change your mind when you've tried a contradance. This is folk dancing with vim, vigour and a large application of centrifugal force. The weekly dance at Warren...
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95 Patton Ave, Asheville, NC 28801, USA
There's music almost every night of the week at the Jack of the Wood, the atmospheric Celtic pub in the centre of Asheville. And arguably the best of the bunch is the Thursday night jam, when some of Appalachia's best bluegrass musicians take to...
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290 Macon Ave, Asheville, NC 28804, USA
If you find yourself in Asheville, NC (and you should, as AFAR's recent feature pointed out - there's a lot to love in Asheville); stay at The Grove Park Inn. This historic hotel is part art deco/part arts and crafts with rambling porches and a...
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6816 Balabanovo, Bulgaria
I was on a business trip to Kardjali, which is small town about 3 hrs from Bulgaria's capital, Sofia. I was amazed everyday I was in Kardjali to find that this small place that's never heard of by many people, has many beautiful natural formations...
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Seoksu-dong, Manan-gu, Anyang, Gyeonggi-do, South Korea
Anyang, located just outside Seoul, is an incredible place for a day trip. The Anyang Art Park has numerous sites to see—including this maze-like staircase. The park, situated in a valley, is a perfect place to spend an afternoon in any season.
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Yagul, Universidad, Oaxaca, Oax., Mexico
Monte Alban and Mitla are the well-known Zapotec ruins near Oaxaca, but Yagul is worth a visit too. It was absolutely empty the day we were there, and it's overgrown, unkempt, and has an amazing view over the valley.
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Swakopmund, Namibia
It was our last day in Namibia and we decided to sign up for a sandboarding lesson in Swakopmund. Our two guides took us out to the desert where, after a strenuous hike up the dune, we strapped on snowboards and helmets and rode down the orange...
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Siwa Oasis, Qesm Siwah, Matrouh Governorate, Egypt
Siwa is a desert oasis in the heart of Egypt's Great Sand Sea, just 30km east of the Libyan border. Traditionally constructed of sand, salt and mud, many of the town's buildings literally melted away in the torrential rains of 1926, leaving behind...
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Levant

A route created by local guide Yamaan Safady ensures that hikers arrive at Petra the way pre-Christian-era travelers did: out of virgin desert, no tour buses in sight. The six-day, 50-mile “back door” route begins in the Dana Biosphere Reserve; at...

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Latin America
In February, off the coast of Southern Baja at Todos Santos, the setting sun turned the beach into an artist's palette of pastels after a day of whale-viewing at the steep shore. The hulking creatures came so close to the shoreline that my...
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Antelope Canyon has been on my "must see" list for a very long time so you can imagine my excitement when I got there. I love how the lighting and shadows made the most interesting palette of colors hug the sexy curves of the canyon. The land...
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When it comes to ice cream, there is still only one place in Rome. It has been the best since 1900. I love Giolitti not only for the great gelato, but also because it hasn’t changed since I was a little girl. 39/06-699-1243. By Pepi Marchetti...
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Mendoza, Capital Department, Mendoza Province, Argentina
Winemaker Santiago Achával of Achával-Ferrer winery has helped Argentine malbecs earn international recognition. He loves skiing at Valle de Las Leñas resort because of the pure air and views of Mendoza from the top of the slopes. "There’s nothing...
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Ocean Park, Hong Kong
There's no better way to chase the sweltering Hong Kong summer heat than at the homegrown Ocean Park. At the Waterfront is Aqua City, where you'll find an Old Hong Kong town, perfect for capturing those holiday photos. By night, cool down with the...
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Mürren, 3825 Lauterbrunnen, Switzerland
More so than most places, Switzerland offers serious skiers the chance to fly down unblemished mountainsides—especially in Mürren. The town is blessed with powder-packed bowls that maintain fresh snow for days after a big fall, drawing...
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560-600 State St, Knoxville, TN 37902, USA
The First Presbyterian Church graveyard is the city’s oldest cemetery and final resting place of Knoxville founder James White and the first territorial governor William Blount. Platted during the second survey of Knoxville in 1795, the plot hosts...
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8734 Ball Camp Pike, Knoxville, TN 37931, USA
Ball Camp Park in North West Knox County is a community green space that manages to squeeze a number of amenities into its six-acre size. With a pair of soccer fields, two combination tennis and basketball courts, and a quad of softball fields,...
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504 Market St, Knoxville, TN 37902, USA
In 1981, Charles Krutch, Tennessee Valley Authority photographer, at age 94, died with no surviving family members. His will specified a surprise $1.3 million gift to the city to be used for the development of an urban park. A contest was held for...
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101 S Central St, Knoxville, TN 37902, USA
One of the greatest ways to spend your Friday or Saturday evening is to go where the locals go. Boyd's Jig and Reel, where the Irish meet the Scottish in this lively, vivacious musical pub. Live music every weekend, from traditional Irish and...
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3725 Maryville Pike, Knoxville, TN 37920, USA
This is one of those completely random hole-in-the-wall restaurants; a secret gem to local folks here in Knoxville. Locally owned and operated by a very talented chef. I had to try the Sampler Plate to really experience the wide assortment of bbq....