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Autumn McGovern′s Wishlist
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Ecuador
Technically, you don’t have to be a science geek to appreciate a cruise to the Galapagos Islands off the coast of Ecuador. That said, basic knowledge of the archipelago as the inspiration for Charles Darwin’s theory of evolution certainly won’t...
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San Pedro de Atacama, Antofagasta Region, Chile
San Pedro de Atacama is a beautiful adobe-esque town on the edge of Atacama Desert in Chile, just west of the Bolivian border. I took this photo in near by Valle De Luna, while I was mountain biking through a virtual moonscape of natural...
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Calle PV. # 12 Tibilo Villa, Lagunas 16551, Peru
Piranha fishing...pink dolphin sightings...holding a caimen...beautiful day explorations by skiff and canoe along the Ucayali River and in the Pacaya Samiria National Reserve. Add to jaw-dropping explorations, the 5-star comfort of the Aqua Amazon...
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Av. Juárez, Centro Histórico, Centro, 06050 Ciudad de México, CDMX, Mexico
The imposing, white-domed wedding cake now known as Palacio de Bellas Artes was originally planned as a national theater, and construction was begun in 1904. The Mexican Revolution, among other things, postponed its completion until 1934, which...
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Paradise Bay, Antarctica
The Antarctic weather was unpredictable and often inhospitable throughout our 1-week expedition cruise. Dramamine came in really handy the last day as we sailed the Gerlach Straight. I popped them like candy before cautiously eating dinner. Just a...
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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,...
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4 Rue de la Herse, 68000 Colmar, France
An incredible French restaurant called Les Bateliers lies over the water just near the Rue Turenne Bridge in Colmar, France, providing a one of a kind view of the colorful historical architecture. If you had to choose one place to eat in Colmar,...
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Via Roma, 51, 19018 Vernazza SP, Italy
There's not much that can improve upon this view, except maybe a cappuccino and a slice of focaccia bread. Lucky for me, I had both of those things with me. This is the view at the very beginning of the Vernazza-Monterosso hiking trail in the...
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Ano Mera 846 00, Greece
A few kilometers inland from Mykonos Town, Ano Mera is a small Cycladic idyll of a village. To get a feel for how people lived before the tourism boom, wander the streets and smell the scent of fresh baked bread. The Panagia Tourliani church and...
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8355 Giethoorn, Netherlands
Giethoorn is the most amazing village I have ever seen. Canals go through the entire village making it a little Venice of the Netherlands. You park your car at the boat dock and then you walk or rent a boat to see the entire place. Giethoorn is a...
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00060 Capena RM, Italy
The original settlement of Capena was founded on the site nowadays known as La Civitucola, some three kilometres north of present-day Capena. Ancient Capena was a thriving town, situated close to the Tiber river and the sanctuary and commercial...
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10 Rue de la Paix, 06360 Èze, France
A maze of narrow medieval streets wind up and down this village perched along the Grande Corniche. The ruins of a château are now an exotic garden, and the 18th-century neoclassical Notre Dame of the Assumption church is a national monument....
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Am Hof 112, 4830 Hallstatt, Austria
Nestled between the Dachstein mountains and the Hallstätter See, Hallstatt looks as picturesque as any village could possibly be. The Hallstatt-Dachstein Salzkammergut area was added to the UNESCO World Heritage List based on the its natural...
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08569 Rupit, Barcelona, Spain
In Rupit, Stone cottages with orangey-red terracotta roofs perch around a stream, half-hidden by the mountainous green hills. An hour and a half drive from Barcelona, walk around this beautiful, if tiny village (approximately 340 residents). Pose...
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R. da Fortaleza, 8650-111 Luz, Portugal
On the edge of Costa Vicentina lies Burgau, a picturesque fisher village on the southwest coast of the Alagarve. A lot of brits have settled down here, making it their all-year-home. You can understand why when you’ve visited the place: Rough...
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Str. Scolii nr.13 C, Sighișoara 545400, Romania
The colorful houses and eye-catching clock tower really take you back to another time. The Fronius Hotel is an amazing space that makes you feel like you are staying in a fairy tale.
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23247, Vinjerac, Croatia
Nestled between the Adriatic Sea and the Dinaric Mountains, the isolated Croatian village of Vinjerac lies asleep, haunted by the ghostly few who live there and the destruction inflicted by World War II. The coastline remains scarred from the...
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2001 15th St, Detroit, MI 48216, USA
Detroit is a truly incredible city, and a place I highly recommend everyone visit. You'll find great food, beautiful architecture, wonderful people and vibrant art scene that can surprise you in unlikely places. We stumbled across this inverted...
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Kiehnwerderallee 1-3, 12437 Berlin, Germany
Even fun has a shelf life. This is what runs through my mind as I walk around Spreepark, the abandoned, dilapidated amusement park in Berlin. When East Germany and the GDR fell, so did many of the businesses operating under the rules of communism....
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Deception Island, Antarctica
All that remains of the whaling station at Whalers Bay in Deception Island are some rusted out buildings, and whale skeletons. It’s strange to walk around the buildings and imagine what the area was like in it’s height of operation. Big boiling...
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Moshi, Tanzania
Captured in the abandoned train station in Moshi, Tanzania. A weathered wooden box which once collected anonymous input, now swings uselessly from a rusty anchor. A small, thought-provoking relic of a bygone colonial era. When I saw it, I imagined...
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Teufelsberg, 14055 Berlin, Germany
Deep in Berlin's Grunewald Forest, Teufelsberg (literally, Devil’s Mountain; the name comes from the nearby Teufelssee, or Devil’s Lake) was once the site of a Nazi technology college. After the war, it was decided that the school...
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14547 Beelitz, Germany
The tree limbs were heavy with freshly fallen snow, providing a peaceful backdrop to this entirely eerie place. I had made my way outside Berlin, to the little community of Beelitz on this snowy Easter weekend, to photograph Beelitz Heilstätten, a...
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NW Reeder Rd, Portland, OR 97231, USA
Perched on a not-so-lonely nude beach on the northern end of Sauvie Island is an enigma. Well above waterline lies a 30-foot orb that piques the imagination and challenges explanation. The "spaceship" origin is not interstellar but certainly...
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Doel, 9130 Beveren, Belgium
If you're up for a unique and slightly strange experience, head to the abandoned town of Doel, near Antwerp, to view some incredible street art. The town of Doel has been mostly abandoned, although there are a few stubborn folk who refuse the...
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Boquete, Panama
En route to the cloud forest and waterfall trails north of Boquete lies an abandoned castle in a lush and magical clearing. The story goes that a man finally started building the dream home for his wife when he retired, but she died before it was...
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Lozovac, Croatia
Located near the coastal city of Šibenik, Krka National Park is named for the river that runs through its lush forests and feeds its most famous site, Skradinski Buk—a huge, clear pool that starts and ends in waterfalls. The park is...
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Ananuri, Georgia
I took a day trip from the Georgian capital of Tbilisi and headed an hour north to the Ananuri fortress. The ancient 17th-century complex is perched on a hill overlooking the sparkling turquoise-colored Aragvi River and Zhinvali Reservoir. It...
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San Cristóbal de las Casas, Chis., Mexico
On the border of the state of Chiapas (Mexico) and Guatemala, there is a national park, Lagunas de Montebello. It contains numerous lakes and cenotes, mostly spring fed from waters deep in the mineral depths of the earth. Each body of water is...
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ຫຼວງພຣະບາງ, Laos
Relaxing in the cool, invigorating water at Kuang Si Waterfall is a great way to spend a day when staying in Luang Prabang, Laos. Photographed by Joel Collins
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Poon Hill Marga, Histan Mandali 33711, Nepal
On the second day of our trek to Poon Hill in the Annapurna Sanctuary, my friend Brill and I stumbled upon this absolutely gorgeous waterfall pulsing through a deep, green canyon. It was the early morning—about 7:30 when we first got to the river...
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Purdon Rd, Nevada City, CA 95959, USA
I just spent the weekend following the 4th of July up near Nevada City. It got over 90 degrees during the day, so we headed to the river. Although lots of people had similar ideas, I was with a local who directed us to this spot and we had it to...
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Località Bagni di Petriolo, 58045 Pari, Civitella Paganico GR, Italy
Relax in the warm volcanic water emerging from deep underground. These natural spas were known by the Romans, who came here for their yearly health retreat.
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Hummingbird Hwy, Belize
If you rent a car in Belize, make sure to cruise the Hummingbird Highway from Dangriga to Belmopan. Take your time and check out all the amazing locations, such as Marie Sharp's Hot Sauce Factory, St Herman's Cave, Five Blues N.P., and the Blue...
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Three miles into Yellowstone from the North Entrance and before you reach Mammoth Hot Springs is a small parking lot on your left. Park and walk down the trail (400m). At the confluence of the Gardiner and Boiling rivers is a fun swimming hole....
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Nordnesparken, 5005 Bergen, Norway
It was August, so it seemed a perfectly sensible idea. I'm in Norway, land of the fjords—let's go for a splash in one! Bergen has a lovely little lido that offers you just that opportunity. Sure, you can swim in its heated outdoor pool, but the...
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Gorge Rd, Nitmiluk NT 0852, Australia
Most visitors to Australia have heard of Kakadu National Park in the Northern Territory, but few realize that neighboring Nitmiluk National Park, four hours south of Darwin, is actually more spectacular. During the wet season, from November to...
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11 Richmond Rd, Pohara, Takaka Golden Bay 7183, New Zealand
I WWOOFed at the Sans Souci Inn for a month and my wonderful hosts sent me on many adventures. I hiked up to Rawhiti Cave, the largest cave opening in NZ; got coffee on "Jacques Cousteau's Pirate Espresso Ship;" admired wood pigeons in The Grove;...
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Manchioneal, Jamaica
Reach Falls is an off-the-beaten-path delight. Located up in the John Crow Mountains on Jamaica's east coast, this 30-foot jade-colored cascade tumbles into several pools in the surrounding rain forest....
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Quintana Roo 109, Tulum, Q.R., Mexico
We decided to visit the Gran Cenote outside of Tulum and were expecting to swim with turtles and fish. While there were a few pet turtles and goldfish, the only real wildlife were bats that hang up in the cave openings. The Gran Cenote is more...
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Via Addolorata, 5, 98050 Valdichiesa ME, Italy
Just returned from four weeks in Sicily. The time we spent on the Aeolian Islands was incredible. Italy with no crowds, unbelievably fresh seafood, and days spent boating around the small islands (Salina was our favourite), stopping to swim...
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Latin America
The water in Mexico isn’t only by the beach. This is Misol-Ha. Located deep in the jungles of Chiapas, the waters of Misol-Ha cascade 35 meters down into a 13.7 meter deep pool of water. The entire area is surrounded by lush tropical vegetation....
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5222 Kobarid, Slovenia
Kobarid is also known as Caporetto, because the town—on the border with Italy—was annexed by the Italians for part of World War I. The brutality of that war has been erased—and scenery like this has survived (you can revisit the war at the museum...
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Waimoku Falls, Hawaii 96713, USA
I used to live in Maui, right at the start of the Hana Highway, and driving the famous road was a weekly ritual. I recently went back to visit and found it still as breathtaking as ever. To avoid the tourist traffic (Mustangs seem to be the...
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Blue Eye, Albania
This place is in the middle of nowhere in Southern Albania. There is no bus stop. You just have to motion to the driver to pull over at the side of the road when you see a promising looking dirt trail. You take that trail off the main road, all...
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Negril, Jamaica
No hotel in Jamaica blends better with its surroundings than the aptly named Rockhouse, a string of villas clinging to the top of a sea cliff at the western tip of the island. Local stone, timber, and thatch are the building materials, and a...
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3901 Packer Lake Rd, Sierra City, CA 96125, USA

My wife, Robin, and I have been camping, fishing, and hiking in the Lakes Basin area, near Sierra City, since we met. These days, our usual home base is a tiny log cabin at the edge of Packer Lake, pictured here. From trailheads around Packer you...

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13, Vang Vieng, Laos
Vang Vieng could be considered a touristy town, but don't hold that against it. It's a magical place, and if you don't find it floating down the river, rent a bicycle and head straight out into the countryside. This image was taken after climbing...
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Montezuma was a must-stop recommendation of all the beaches, so when we two Floridians finally arrived on the miniature, desolate coast in this small town we were confused. The communal bonfire atmosphere described seemed unlikely and the view was...
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Supai, AZ 86435, USA
There’s a reason this is one of the most iconic spots along the Grand Canyon. Located on the Havasupai Indian Reservation and hidden deep within a 20-mile round-trip hike, Havasu Falls’ sparkling turquoise waters are a popular...
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4050 Red Rock Loop Rd, Sedona, AZ 86336, USA
The red rocks around Sedona are a trekker's dream, and if you know where to go, you can jump in a creek as well. Just to the southwest of Sedona, check out Red Rocks State Park. Take a short hike then cool off with a swim below Cathedral Rock. (By...
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Finlayvale Road, Mossman QLD 4873, Australia
Imagine your hotel room looking out into the middle of the rainforest. At Silky Oaks, it's your reality. Some balconies have hammocks (my favourite feature in the room); other room balconies even have a bed! The restaurant also looks over the...
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Grace Bay Rd, Grace Bay TKCA 1ZZ, Turks and Caicos Islands
Housed on a 1,100-foot stretch of beachfront, Grace Bay Club is as stylishly current as it was in 1993, when it became the first luxury hotel to open on the then nearly empty sands of Grace Bay. From its original 21 rooms, the upscale property has...
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St. Elizabeth Parish, Treasure Beach, Jamaica
A collection of 31 idiosyncratically designed and decorated cottages (think Morocco does sea glass) on Jamaica’s isolated south coast, Jakes attracts a stylish but relaxed crowd that doesn’t mind the two-hour drive from Montego Bay,...
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Navidad, O'Higgins Region, Chile
During my stay at the new Hotel Surazo, I fell asleep to the sound of the Pacific surf pounding the sand. Located in Matanzas, a village on the sparsely populated, mountainous central Chilean coast, this low-slung, modern surf lodge is about 50...
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Carretera Cancún-Tulum KM 51, Punta Maroma, 77710 Playa del Carmen, Q.R., Mexico
Just 25 minutes from Cancún's international airport is Belmond Maroma Resort & Spa, surrounded by 200 acres of preserved jungle. Guests here still enjoy direct access to the Caribbean Sea and its powdery, white-sand beach, as well...
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72-100 Ka'upulehu Drive, Kailua-Kona, HI 96740, USA
A favorite among Hollywood royalty, the Big Island’s Four Seasons is more secluded than its sister property on Maui. It sits on 863 acres of palm-fringed coastline, with little else for miles in any direction, other than two exclusive golf...
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62-100 Mauna Kea Beach Dr, Waimea, HI 96743, USA
The sweet smell of plumeria floats on gentle trade winds into each guest room at the Mauna Kea Beach Hotel. When entering the room, you may be surprised that floor-to-ceiling picture windows and a beautiful private lanai (patio) beckon you to step...
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Mikonos 846 00, Greece
From the outside, San Giorgio looks like one of Greece’s ubiquitous whitewashed homes. Inside, traditional Greek textiles and locally made furniture adorn the 33 unfussy rooms. Most feature rough-hewn wooden dressers, large circular jute...
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North Point Beach is one of my favorite beaches on the Central California Coast. This beach has something for everyone: Soft sand, good surf, wildflowers, tidepools, sandy bluffs, bird-watching, fishing, it’s dog-friendly, and offers epic views of...
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32 Waterkant St, Ferreira Town, Jeffreys Bay, 6330, South Africa
Driving through Garden Route we decided to spend a night at Jeffreys Bay, a small beach town on Indian Ocean. The guest house on the beach was a perfect place to stay. Waking up to a view like this was worth the drive and planing. Gorgeous aqua...
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Juárez, 71980 Puerto Escondido, Oax., Mexico
Puerto Escodido, Oaxaca is primarily known for its double overhead barrels and surf scene. However there are some nice secluded coves protected from the massive surf, where one can enjoy calm, warm Pacific waters and eat fresh mariscos on the...
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Pismo Beach, CA, USA
watching the sunset over the Pacific Ocean
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Main St, Magheracar, Bundoran, Co. Donegal, Ireland
Drive down a country road in County Donegal toward the sea, and you’re likely to find miles of unspoiled golden beach – and if there are waves, the water might be filled with surfers. Pounded by the big swells of the Atlantic Ocean, the northwest...
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Montauk, NY 11954, USA
About three hours east of the hectic, bustling craziness of New York City lies one of the most tranquil enclaves anywhere—Montauk. Okay, so it's gotten a bit hipstery in the past few years, but there are spots that still remain unspoiled and...
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Raglan, New Zealand
If you go to New Zealand, Raglan should be near the top of the list. Even if you've never surfed before, experiencing that culture in Raglan is a blast. I took my first surfing lessons there. The instructors were very kind and patient with us...
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Jacksonville, FL, USA
Looking out into the Atlantic at Jacksonville Beach.
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Lençóis - State of Bahia, Brazil
The water is polluted, that was my first thought. While hiking through Chapada Diamantina National Park, pollution was not high on my list of things to be thinking about that day. As we approached the water, it had the appearance of a jet black...
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Crijevićeva ul. 9, 20000, Dubrovnik, Croatia
Climb the grand baroque staircase and pass the Jesuit church, cross Gundulić Square, and follow the COLD DRINKS WITH THE MOST BEAUTIFUL VIEW signs. Then, yes, walk through the walls. Buža translates to “a hole-in-the-wall,” and a...
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Landmannalaugavegur, Iceland
At the beginning of a 4-day, 40-mile trek through the fringes of the Icelandic highlands, we saw these artistic masterpieces. Landmannalaugar. To me, they were the Rainbow Mountains. Majestic. Surreal. Hiking by this beautiful landscape seemed...
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Narchyang, Nepal

In the mountain village of Koto, Nepal, there is a path that branches off the legendary 150-mile Annapurna Circuit and passes—ceremoniously, tantalizingly—through a large stone gate. This trail is off-limits, a nearby sign reads, unless you have a...

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Kaihalulu Beach, Hana, HI 96713, USA
This was the end of the Hana Highway in Maui. Our guidebook told of a red sand beach, but it specifically left out information on how to get there, in an effort to keep people from spoiling it. Before our trip, I printed out some instructions from...
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2520 Peniche, Portugal
Hire a boat out of Peniche, Portugal, when available, and travel six miles offshore to the pristine Berlenga Islands. Then hike, kayak, snorkel, and swim the day away. Pack a picnic lunch and feast on the beach. The perfect day in paradise.
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Jordan
A couple days after seeing the Pyramids we came to Petra and were completely blown away. The walk through the canyon only builds up the excitement and then the Treasury appears immediately in front of you. The Pyramids might have been one of the...
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Adelaide Parklands Terminal Richmond Rd, Keswick SA 5035, Australia
The two-night journey traverses 1,851 miles from Adelaide in South Australia to Darwin in the Northern Territory. As the train traces the route taken by 19th-century Afghan camel drivers, Platinum Service travelers have the opportunity to...
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Av. Ezequiel Bustillo Km. 25, R8401 San Carlos de Bariloche, Río Negro, Argentina
Called Argentine Switzerland for its wooden chalets and alpine setting, this area is home to some of South America’s best spas. The Latin America travel specialists at Blue Parallel arrange yoga classes with views of lakes and the Andes. Guests...
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United States
Yellowstone National Park is no secret by any stretch of the imagination. Yellowstone is one of America's most popular tourist destinations, and with good reason; there few places in the country where you can rub shoulders with grizzlies, smack...
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Neharde'a St, Tel Aviv-Yafo, Israel
Next time you travel to Israel and interested in an exceptional and different dining experience, I highly recommend to check the new website of EatWith, to book a dinner with locals. EatWith is a global community (started in Israel) that invites...
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Lower Nob Hill, San Francisco, CA, USA
Bourbon and Branch is a traditional speakeasy. Their 8 house rules—hushed voices and no cell phones among them—encourage neighborly conversation in a very relaxed setting. It's a great way to meet people if you're traveling alone as...
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Utah 84718, USA
It's really fun to visit a place that has such rich travel-related history. National Geographic magazine, who photographed the area using Kodachrome film for a 1949 photo-spread, hence its name. This is Grosvenor Arch, named after the former...
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1199D Barrenjoey Rd, Palm Beach NSW 2108, Australia
If you need a break from lounging on the lovely northern beaches, cruising up to Barrenjoey in Palm Beach will bring you to this absolute gem. The hiking trails are plentiful and the view from the top is incredible. With sweeping views in all...
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Americas
This is not a hike for the inexperienced. It takes most people 8 to 10 hours round-trip and climbs 1400m over 5km one-way. It should only be attempted by reasonably fit people. The path begins on a long steep climb, and then flattens out at a...
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Scandinavia
Trolltunga (Troll's Tongue) is a challenging hike in Skjeggedal, Norway. It is one of the most rewarding hikes I have ever done. It wasn't crowded and the views were incredibly beautiful. It took us about 5 hours to reach the ledge of the...
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Pohara 7183, New Zealand
There aren't too many hikes in the world that start with a ride on a water taxi, but that's how our hike on the Abel Tasman Trail began. We boarded our Sea Shuttle taxi off the beach in Kaiteriteri at 9:15am. Our taxi took us past a tiny island...
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Dragon's Back, Shek O, Hong Kong
On this day, we discovered there's way more to Hong Kong than high-end shopping and dining. I'll never forget these views and the sense of tranquility we found up here. We also spent some time at the lovely little Shek O beach, which you'll find...
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Diablo Lake, Washington 98283, USA
In the summer, take at least a couple of days to drive the North Cascades Loop — four hundred miles of alpine splendor just to the northeast of Seattle, just south of the Canadian border. At Diablo Lake, pull off the highway and check out the...
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Garibaldi Lake, Squamish-Lillooet D, BC V0N, Canada
With aqua blue lakes, it is hard not to be tempted to hike into Garibaldi Lake Campground and explore the area of Panorama Ridge and Black Tusk. With phenomenal views, it is worth the work of getting there. Even though a day hike to Panorama Ridge...
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Corvo Island, 9980, Portugal
Small and remote, Corvo Island is the tip of an enormous marine volcano known as Monte Gordo. Its main attraction is Lagoa do Caldeirão, on the bottom of the crater where you can observe nine islets, one for each of the Azores Islands. It was here...
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Nevis Peak, the towering bulge rising from the middle of the island, can be hiked alone or with a guide. If you’d rather explore with a professional, go with Lynell E. Liburd of Sunrise Tours. He’ll lead you on a strenuous hike to the...
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Thorong La, Tanki Manang 33500, Nepal
I saw the first glimpse of them from the plane window – the rigid, snowy Himalayan peaks. They were practically at eye level with our cruising altitude; you could reach out and touch them as if they were the pages of a book. They looked beautiful...
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Mt Moran, Wyoming 83414, USA
9 mile loop trail with beautiful views, and 1 sole backcountry camping site on the point of a small peninsula in Jackson Lake.
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Roys Peak, Otago 9381, New Zealand
The guidebooks say this is a difficult trek but well worth it. After a huffing and puffing trek to the top of Roy’s Peak, I would most certainly like to concur. 11k in approximately 4-5 hours, a decent level of fitness is most needed for this...
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Igeldo Ibilbidea, 187, 20008 Donostia, Gipuzkoa, Spain
It was raining when we arrived in Donostia-San Sebastian, but the skies cleared on our second day, and we rode the funicular railway up Mount Igueldo to take in the view back on the city, La Concha Bay, and the empty beach. The "low" travel season...
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15 Entrance Rd, Los Alamos, NM 87544, USA
I’m not sure at what age humans develop the skill to stand still and appreciate scenery, but based on a scientific survey of kids who live in my house, it’s not age seven. (On a trip to the Canadian Rockies, as my wife and I snapped photos of the...
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45500 CA-1, Big Sur, CA 93920, USA
One of my favorite campgrounds in Big Sur is the big open meadow at Andrew Molera State Park. It's great for large groups and it's one of the best bases for hiking and surfing in the area. More than 20 miles of trails run throughout the park's...
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Magallanes y la Antártica Chilena Region, Chile
See our full list of Where to Go in 2015. Southern Patagonia is home to the legendary Torres del Paine National Park. The best way to observe the park’s wildlife, which includes guanacos, deer, and pumas, is to join Tierra Patagonia hotel’s new...
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Utah, USA
As its biblical name implies, Zion National Park has the appeal of a place out of time. Established on November 19, 1919, the canyon and its surrounding landscape feel like a natural temple, full of arches, hoodoos, and imposing walls, some of...
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North Rim, AZ 86052, USA
If you know your flight path is going to go over the Grand Canyon, get a window seat. Even from thirty-some-thousand feet above, the chasms within chasms stretch on to the horizon...
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Peru
Trek through the Andes to the 15th-century Incan ruins of Machu Picchu on the lesser-traveled Salkantay Trail. Four luxurious lodges—three with outdoor hot tubs at the foot of craggy peaks, the last in a lush avocado orchard—will serve as your...
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Yosemite National Park, 1 Ahwahnee Drive, Yosemite Valley, CA 95389, USA
Although a very popular hike in the Yosemite Valley, the hike past Vernal Falls up the mist trail to Nevada Falls is magical in the Springtime. Personally, I think this is the best spot to stop and have lunch. However, Be sure to check the signs...
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Latin America
Do you go down to the beach via ladder, or just sit on the cliff and get lulled into a trance with with rhythm of the waves? Or just come back again tomorrow? Ahhh choices.....
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Jiuzhaigou, Aba, Sichuan, China, 623400
Jiuzhaigou Valley (or Jiuzhaigou National Park) is located in Sichuan, China. It is one of the World Heritage Site by UNESCO. This is the longest hiking experience I've ever had - it took me two days to finish every part of the park! However, I...
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52801 California State Route 1, Big Sur, CA 93920, USA
After five hours in the car, I was more than happy to hop out and hike the 1.4 miles out to Pfeiffer Burns State Park and get the prize of a beautiful waterfall. The water's color is an unreal sea blue/green that I have never seen before. The best...
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Beijing, China
The Great Wall of China runs more than 21,000 kilometers (over 13,000 miles), not as one continuous wall but rather as fortified wall sections. Some of the sections date back more than 2,500 years, though only 8.2 percent of the existing wall is...
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Myrdal, Norway
Few countries can rival Norway for dramatic, jaw-dropping scenery. This view was captured on board the scenic Bergen Railway on a "Norway in a Nutshell" tour that took in the breathtaking Flåm Railway, the Aurlandsfjord, the narrow Nærøyfjord and...
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Itacoatiara, Niterói - State of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Just a thirty minute cab ride from downtown Rio over the Rio-Niteroi bridge, one of the longest bridges in the world, this little beach town of Itacoatiara lies. It is a surfers' haven and a sleepy little beach town that swells on the weekends...
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Tsodilo Hills, Botswana
Situated within the splendor of the Kalahari Desert in northwest Botswana, this World Heritage site features one of the highest concentrations of rock art in the world. Its massive quartzite rock formations loom from ancient sand dunes to the east...
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Arashiyama Genrokuzancho, Ukyō-ku, Kyoto, Kyoto Prefecture 616-0007, Japan
In western Kyoto, there is a very large forest of bamboo. As you can see in the photo, the shoots grow very tall, making those who stroll by look quite small. I'm sure there are times when this road is crowded, but when we were there, people were...
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1 Shimoshiroganechō, Hirosaki-shi, Aomori-ken 036-8356, Japan

If you visit this castle in spring, you’ll come away remembering only the visual riot of the more than 2,500 blossoming cherry trees. If your visit coincides with the four-day winter festival, it’s likely to be the snow lanterns and...

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1 Chome-1-1 Uchisaiwaichō, Chiyoda-ku, Tōkyō-to 100-8558, Japan
“What a strange thing/to be alive/under cherry blossoms,” wrote the 18th-century Japanese poet Kobayashi Issa. When the thousands of cherry trees in Japan burst into bloom each spring, it can feel like much of the country is covered in a pink...
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Koror, Palau
Over 10,000 years ago, as the last ice age ended, sea levels rose and filled depressions in Palau’s limestone islands, which became inland marine lakes. There are around seventy of these lakes in Palau, defined by their salinity, and also...
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Doma laukums 1, Centra rajons, Rīga, LV-1050, Latvia
Now that I'm back in California, I can feel nostalgic about this extremely cold trip to Latvia. Our exploration of Riga consisted of wandering during breaks in the storm, but we still managed to see a lot of the city. Don't let the snow slow you...
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Alberta iela 12, Centra rajons, Rīga, LV-1010, Latvia
Riga, Latvia has some of the finest examples of Art Nouveau architecture anywhere in the world. Most of the buildings are concentrated on Elizabete iela and Alberta iela and are the work of architect Mikhail Eisenstein. Before you leave for Riga,...
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Nēģu iela 7, Latgales priekšpilsēta, Rīga, LV-1050, Latvia
Riga seems to be pretty good at recycling historical venues - the 400 year old buildings of the old town, for instance, are now pizza joints and nightclubs. The pavilions housing the central market, opposite the train station, were actually built...
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Herdera laukums 6, Centra rajons, Rīga, LV-1050, Latvia
When we arrived in Riga, we happened to be there the weekend of the Riga Heritage Festival. There were local artisan booths, street performers, and games for the children. We saw part of a youth orchestra performance in the center court of the...
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Riga is credited for being the first place to have a decorated Christmas tree and the Christmas spirit is certainly still present. The Riga Christmas Market was split between several squares throughout the Old Town. With the snow falling, people...
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The largest living structure on the planet, Australia’s Great Barrier Reef stretches for more than 1400 miles. To put that number in perspective, it’s almost 400 miles longer than the distance from San Diego to Seattle. Experiencing this natural...
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Tasmania, Australia

In the landscape around Port Arthur, sclerophyll forest (typical Australian vegetation, with spiky, drought-tolerant leaves) meets hard dolerite rock in Tasman National Park. The park covers more than 100 square kilometers (about 40 square...

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Stanley Pl, South Brisbane QLD 4101, Australia
The Gallery of Modern Art (GOMA) burst onto the Brisbane scene in 2006 and has been demanding national and international attention ever since, earning top spot as the most visited art gallery in Australia and in the Top 50 Art Galleries In The...
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328 Swanston St, Melbourne VIC 3000, Australia
This is a Melbourne landmark, where students make use of the free Wi-Fi, and locals picnic on the green lawns overlooking Swanston Street. It’s also a great way to spend a few hours, exploring the heritage interiors of the 19th-century building...
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Fraser Ave, Perth WA 6005, Australia

The array of Western Australian flowers, trees and shrubs at this fantastic botanic garden ranges from ancient cycads to the Gija Jumulu boab (a type of baobab tree), a 750-year-old relic that was transplanted from the Kimberley region nearly...

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Australia’s most famous beach has played many roles throughout history. In 1907, a group of local swimmers became the world’s first lifeguards; during World War II, it was fortified by barbed wire and iron stakes; and over the last few...
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Sydney Harbour Bridge, Sydney NSW, Australia
Few harbors, or harbours, are more famous and breathtakingly beautiful than Sydney’s. First discovered in 1770 by Captain James Cook, and the site of the first colony in Australia in 1788, the harbor today is home to some of the city’s...
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Unnamed Road, Maxwelton QLD 4822, Australia
The Great Barrier Reef may be the most famous natural wonder in Queensland, but there are other treasures to explore on the mainland including the world’s oldest living rainforest, the Daintree Rainforest which is one that you’ll visit on Betty Jo...
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30-062 Kraków, Poland
Rynek Główny, the main square of Kraków, is the largest medieval marketplace in Europe. The site of several historical events, it’s now home to the greatest concentration of outdoor cafés and souvenir shops in town, and...
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Wawel 3, 31-001 Kraków, Poland
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plac Mariacki 5, 31-042 Kraków, Poland
St. Mary's Basilica is Krakow's most iconic church, occupying a prominent spot in the northeast corner of the main square. The main structure dates back to the 14th century and its two towers are distinctly asymmetrical, with one doubling up as...
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During a tour of the more-than-700-year-old Wieliczka Salt Mine, you’ll travel through a labyrinth of underground corridors and stairs, leading to a variety of fantastically shaped chambers, chapels, salt sculptures, and subterranean lakes....
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Kraków, Poland
Wawel Hill occupies a special place in Polish history—the seat of kings, it served as symbol of Polish identity even when the country was erased from the map during partitions. Perched on the limestone hill above the Vistula River, the Wawel...
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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...
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70000 Colonia del Sacramento, Colonia Department, Uruguay
only a boat ride away from buenos aires, but colonia feels like a different world in a different era. what an incredible change of pace!
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Punta del Este, Maldonado Department, Uruguay
The exterior of this curious museum is as intriguing as the collections inside, thanks to the creative mind of its founder, Carlos Páez Vilaró. Although he wasn't an architect, Páez designed and built this rambling Gaudí-esque structure, which was...
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Mercado del Puerto, Rambla 25 de Agosto de 1825 228, 11000 Montevideo, Uruguay
Convenient to Montevideo’s cruise ship terminal, the Mercado del Puerto was first inaugurated in 1868 and long served as the city’s principal meat and produce market. The clock here is almost as famous as the building itself. Constructed, like the...
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Palacio Salvo, Plaza Independencia 848, 11100 Montevideo, Uruguay
One of the most iconic landmarks of Montevideo, the Palacio Salvo stands on the Plaza Independencia. The building was intended as a hotel when it was constructed in 1928, according to a design by the Italian architect Mario Palanti, but it never...
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The Greenland Ice Sheet covers nearly 80 percent of Greenland’s surface, feeding glaciers from one end of the island to the other. As ships make their way through Prince Christian Sound, passengers can catch sight of the ice sheet on the northern...
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Tropical cruise vacations call for the perfect beachwear, so if you're in the market for some colorful new duds, check out the offerings at this shop in the Port Denarau marina complex. You'll find a range of men's, women's and kids' surf-, beach-...

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This protected 70-square-kilometer (20-square-mile) park is a two-hour boat ride from Savusavu but worth the trip for its picture-postcard beaches, wealth of vibrant corals and marine life and the experience of being isolated from the rest of the...

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Harris Rd, Suva, Fiji
The Suva Municipal Market is exactly what you'd want and expect from a local market in the tropics: fruit and vegetables that look like props in a science fiction movie, fresh juice stands and, sooner or later, a glimpse of everyone who actually...
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Kings Road, Nasinu, Fiji
Located just outside town proper, the Colo-I-Suva Forest Park offers a place to cool off and have a little peace and quiet and a nice walk. A trail leads from the Upper Pools up to Waisila Falls, with some good swimming holes and a picnic area...
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Cakobau Road, Suva, Fiji
If you are at the botanical gardens, be sure to check out the Fiji Museum. It's a colorful, tactile place that's overflowing with history going as far back as 3,700 years ago. This boat is something that lured me to the museum. Its unusual design...
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Queens Rd, Yadua, Fiji
Fiji's first national park, these dunes rise up from the ocean in undulating shapes that make for great photo ops. But more than that, they're home to 22 species of birds, as well as an ancient burial site dating to about 2,600 years ago. Pottery,...
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Cakobau Road, Suva, Fiji
Albert Park was the site of the original village of Suva, so it’s fitting that it’s now home to the Fiji Museum. You'll see genuine old canoes, steering oars from the classic double-hulled exploring vessels that let the Polynesians conquer the...
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Kathmandu 44600, Nepal
When in Nepal, it is a must to indulge in momos. Found in the quirkiest alleys, in the cleanest little shops, they come with mouth-watering sauces and sumptuous meat fillings. Slurp!
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Approach the Khumbu Ice Fall at the foot of the highest mountain on the globe and its satellite peaks. Along the way pass the famous Sherpa village of Namche Bazar and illustrious Tengboche Monastery, with panoramic views of Everest - 8848m, Cho...
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Thorong La, Tanki Manang 33500, Nepal
The great trek in the Annapurna area is unquestionably the Annapurna circuit. The complete circuit has just been conceivable since 1980s when the Manang range was definitively opened to nonnatives. For an inside and out experience of the view and...
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Bhaktapur, Nepal
The ancient capital of the Kathmandu Valley is an earthy composition of ornate brickwork and wood filigreed temples built by the Newar tribe. In Bhaktapur’s Durbar Square; the relief carvings on the golden Suun Dhoka Gate, and stone images of the...
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Patan 44700, Nepal
Of all the cities in the Kathmandu Valley, my favorite was Patan mainly because there was traditional Nepalese arts and handicrafts was on display everywhere. When I mean everywhere, I mean everywhere….on walls, stairs and steps, building facades,...
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The village of Boudhanath and the Boudha Stupa is an important pilgrimage site for Tibetans and a must see for culture lovers. It can be visited as a day trip from Kathmandu.
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655 Main Rd, Berriedale TAS 7011, Australia

This unusual contemporary art museum is located in a series of dimly lit caverns and tunnels built into the side of a cliff in Berriedale, a Hobart suburb. Inside, mind-bending installations include a stinky model of the human digestive...

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Tasmania, Australia
Day two of Pamela’s “Authentic by Nature” itinerary starts with a cruise on the Gordon River, one of the highlights of western Tasmania. You’ll travel from deep within the Tasmanian Wilderness World Heritage Area to Macquarie Harbour and the...
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126 Murray St, Hobart TAS 7000, Australia
Like Port Arthur, Hobart’s history begins with its creation as a penal colony but in contrast to the historic site, Tasmania’s capital is a vibrant and sophisticated city today. Though its population is just over 200,000, it has a lively food...
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Arthur Hwy, Port Arthur TAS 7182, Australia

One of Tasmania's top tourist attractions is the crumbling ruins of a penal colony, now a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Visit the penitentiary, where 60 stone buildings remain, for a sobering glimpse into the brutal lives of the 12,500...

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This new 28-mile itinerary takes four days and traverses eucalyptus forests, wildflower-covered bluffs, and dramatic dolerite cliffs on the Tasman Peninsula. Shared cabins are equipped with mattresses, gas stoves, and panoramic decks; just don’t...
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Salamanca Pl, Hobart TAS 7001, Australia

The bustling waterfront district of Salamanca Place is often considered Hobart’s heart. The picturesque cobblestoned square, lined with rows of Georgian sandstone buildings, is home to hip art galleries and artist studios as well as bustling...

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2 Bass Hwy, Parklands TAS 7320, Australia

To purchase those paper items, whiskeys and cheeses you’ve been hearing so much about, look no further than the Makers’ Workshop. This museum-cum-arts-center won the Tasmanian Architecture Award in 2010. Inside the iridescent glass...

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Varadero, Cuba
Traveling to Cuba is like taking the Delorean back in time 50 years. This picture was taken on my first trip to Cuba. On that trip, my mouth stayed wide open in awe of all of the beautiful old American cars. Granted, I did take time to enjoy...
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Malecon, La Habana, Cuba
Once in a while you catch a shot that is completely unexpected - one of those rare occasions when everything plays out right, you snap, and you have a keeper. During this particularly stormy afternoon, I was the only one foolish enough to be...
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Santiago de Cuba, Cuba
A trip to Santiago de Cuba wouldn't be complete without a visit to San Pedro de la Roca Castle, also known as Castillo del Morro. This imposing fortress on the bay protected the city from pirates and military attack and is considered both...
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Lisbon, Portugal
A must buy in Lisbon...chestnuts roasted over an open fire in central Lisbon...can be found all over the downtown area. One caution, eat sooner rather than later, the nut becomes harder the longer you wait and it may be a tooth that cracks instead...
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Porto, Portugal
At the mouth of the Douro River, the medieval city of Porto, Portugal, is undergoing an architectural renaissance. Old World icons, such as the baroque Torre dos Clérigos bell tower that helped the city earn UNESCO status in 1996, contrast with...
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2710 Sintra, Portugal
I spent an hour or so walking through the streets of historic Sintra, Portugal. Many of the buildings in this town date back to the 8th century. I have a few more photos on my blog here: http://stevecookphotography.com/sintra-portugal/.
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Praça do Império 1400-206 Lisboa, 1400-206 Lisboa, Portugal
The churches in Portugal are uniquely beautiful in a way that is is ornate but not flashy or gilded. The Manueline style of architecture used to build the St. Jeronimos Monastery was a transitional style that combined Renaissance and Gothic...
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R. de Belém 84-92, 1300-085 Lisboa, Portugal
If you're visiting Lisbon, chances are you'll make your way to nearby Belem to see some age of Discoveries sites like the Tower of Belem or Monastery of Jerónimos. But here's something you must do while you're in the district. Eat pastry. This is...
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1100-605 Alfama, Portugal
Walking throughout Lisbon one is struck by the well known 'blue hues' decorating the city with the exquisite tilework. They are indeed lovely in tone and vary in color temperature. Important to note is the welcoming yellow hue that has gained...
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Largo Infante Dom Henrique, 2440 Batalha, Portugal
One of our side trips from Fatima was to the Monastery of Batalha. When we arrived at Batalha, we were once again awed by the beauty and architecture of this immense battle abby that we had seen years before. Outside in the huge courtyard you see...
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2300 Tomar, Portugal
Tomar Portugal is an amazing place to visit. Within this small town is a beautiful castle built by the Knights Templar, a jewish quarter with the oldest synagogue in Portugal (museum as well) and one of the funkiest museums ever visited- the...
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Calle Real Xalteva, Granada, Nicaragua
This highlight come from this past winter when I was living and traveling through Central America. While I had a base in Coco, Costa Rica, I spent three months traveling around Central America, including Monteverde, Palo Verde National Park, and...
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Apoyo Lagoon, Nicaragua
When I hear the word lagoon, I dont envision it being a place Im going to want to swim. Laguna de Apoyo, located between the cities of Masaya and Granada, completely changed my mind. This warm, fresh water lagoon (actually the size of a lake) with...
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Calle Atravesada, Granada, Nicaragua
Not sure where to start on your site-seeing tour of Granada? Enjoy a relaxing hour-long tour of the city's landmarks on a horse-drawn carriage! Starting at the park, we had many stops along the way for some great photos! We chose an English...
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The imposing Mombacho Volcano watches over the colonial city of Granada and entices you to visit. Tours can be arranged from Granada but its proximity makes for a short and exciting public bus ride. From the park entrance, most people choose to...
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Calle Atravesada, Granada, Nicaragua
As a chocoholic, I rarely turn down an opportunity to eat chocolate, so I certainly couldn't turn down the opportunity to learn how to make chocolate. The Choco Museo in Granada is committed to making artisan chocolate where the cacao plant grows....
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Nicaragua doesn't have the pre-Hispanic historical sites that Guatemala or Mexico do, but the museum in the old Convento de San Francisco in Granada holds a collection of ancient stone carvings worth checking out. The figures are from the island...
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Khoroo 1, Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia
I wanted to go on a trip that was off the beaten path and so I picked Mongolia. I knew it was going to be quite an effort to get there so I wanted to make the most of it. I timed my trip to coincide with the Naadam Festival which is three day...
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Altai, Mongolia
As soon as we got to Mongolia, my two friends and I did a "Ger-to-Ger" four night trip outside of Ulaan Bator. This the the first evening when we climbed the hills beside the ger we were staying at for the first two nights. You can see the ger we...
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Gobi Desert Dr, Palm Desert, CA 92211, USA
While in Mongolia, you will likely have the opportunity to stay with a nomadic family. It's a fantastic experience that I can't recommend highly enough. However, in order to be a respectful guest- it's important to understand the the ger not just...
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Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia
Not known for its tourist attractions, Ulaanbaatar shouldn't be ignored just because it "ain't gonna win no beauty contest". One thing I did here was go to a traditional throat singing performance, which was surprisingly impressive. I think I...
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Tanzania
With a simple point & shoot camera, it's really hard for me to choose my favorite photo. We booked our safari with Into Africa, & Dennis Lyamuya was our world-class guide. We remain friends with Dennis 5 years later. The Serengeti was hot & dusty,...
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Mt Kilimanjaro, Tanzania
A persistent rumor has it that Mount Kilimanjaro actually belonged to Kenya until colonial times when Queen Victoria gave it to her grandson Kaiser Wilhelm, who governed what would become Tanzania, as a rather lavish birthday...
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Dar es Salaam, Tanzania
Floating just off shore of Tanzania’s economic capital, Dar es Salaam, this fisherman talks business. While computers remain out of reach to most Tanzanians, ubiquitous cell phone service is transforming how business is conducted.
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Zanzibar City, Tanzania
If you travel anywhere in East Africa, you’ll become acquainted with the women’s garment known as kanga: a bolt of cloth worn any number of ways and featuring a Swahili proverb printed along the bottom. Zanzibari kanga are well-known all over the...
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Zimbabwe
Seeing the Victoria Falls is truly amazing. I've been lucky enough to view the falls from both the Zambian and Zimbabwean sides, and I have to say that I am partial to the Zim side. Better value for money, unique lodges and camps and better views...
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Zimbabwe
We thought it would be a lazy day floating down the lower Zambezi in our canoes, having a picnic lunch along the river's edge at little Vundu Camp and enjoying the mountains slowly gliding by on the Zambian side of the river. We had not fully...
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Masvingo, Zimbabwe
"Zimbabwe" means "the house of stone" and is named after the 11th century kingdom and trading city we now call Great Zimbabwe. This National Monument is a UNESCO World Heritage Site located in the southeast corner of the country is one place not...
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Zambezi River, Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe
That's me there hanging on for dear life! This was the most exciting and terrifying experience of my life. The guide recognized a certain adventurous spirit in our group based on the fact that we were all serving in Peace Corps in various...
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Harare, Zimbabwe
The Book Cafe began in 1997 and was one of the top cultural venues in Zimbabwe. Over the years it helped launch the musical careers of many famous African artists. It was a place where locals and foreigners alike gathered to watch live music,...