Collected by Annie Shustrin, AFAR Local Expert
Places i NEED to go
Stone Town, Zanzibar, Tanzania
As easy as it would be to spend an entire trip to Zanzibar lazing around on soft-sand beaches, it’s well worth skipping an hour or two of sunbathing to see Stone Town, the ancient district of Zanzibar. With its narrow cobblestoned streets,...
Moraine Lake, Improvement District No. 9, AB T0L, Canada
Nestled at the base of the Valley of the 10 Peaks, Moraine Lake boasts turquoise waters that change color throughout the day as sunlight refracts off the minuscule particles of glacier-ground rock suspended within. Though it has a B-list rating...
Lake Bled, 4260 Bled, Slovenia
Bled (and the lake by the same moniker) is the most Fairytale-esque town I've ever experienced. The people are almost jarringly friendly by American standards, the island church is as beautiful as it is quaint, and the castle perched on the cliffs...
El Nido, Palawan, Philippines
I’ve always wondered what it would be like to explore far-flung islands and experience life as a castaway or something like it. My fantasies became reality when I discovered Tao, an organization in the Philippines offering adventures to the...
I was traveling though Colombia on a job and I took this photo of Willa, my colleague and fast-friend, being dwarfed by wax palms, the world's tallest palm trees, in Valle de Corcora in Colombia's coffee triangle. This experience was so memorable...
Kota Kinabalu, Sabah, Malaysia
Severely dehydrated, severely under-dressed, severely cold (the sum of these parts means, of course, that I am severely stupid) my travel partner and I dragged our sorry carcasses through the woods and over rocks in the dead of night in search of...
Playón Chico, Panama
The family-owned Yandup Island Lodge is located on a private island across from the remote Playon Chico community on the Caribbean coastline of San Blas, Panama. The eco-lodge offers two tours a day: a visit to a beach on one of the archipelago's...
Bagan, Myanmar (Burma)
The secret to having a good time in Bagan has nothing to do with getting there - all that takes is faith in a Burmese pilot and his ancient aircraft, or an unwavering belief that your 13-hour bus ride from Yangon will actually deliver you to the...
Kota Kinabalu, Sabah, Malaysia
To market, to market! Take me to the market; that's where I like to get my feet wet (related: it's a terrible idea to wear flip flops to the market). Last week I waxed poetic on my love for bamboo basket makerel in Bangkok. I don't know what sort...
Naya Basti, Darjeeling, West Bengal 734101, India
The air becomes crisp as you climb through the National Parks of West Bengal, India, towards this magical town perched up in the mountains. Your method of transportation: a soot-coughing toy train that snakes up the Darjeeling Himalayan Railway....
Hvammar, Kópavogur, Iceland
First time: We took the Northern Lights tour out about an hour outside of Rekyjavik and they didn't show. Second time: Northern Lights tour canceled for the night because of visibility problems (cloudy day). Third time: We went an hour outside...
Nyaungshwe, Myanmar (Burma)
There's something calming about the mere presence of monks. When one comes floating towards you in a hollowed out canoe, sporting killer sunglasses ... well, that's a moment for sure. It's classic Burma. If you head to the country, don't miss Inle...
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