The week passed in a desperate anticipation of vacations. I’ve been enthusiastically terrorizing GoogleMaps zooming in and out the precious dot of terrain against the background of deep blue ocean turn and turn about. At a reduced scale I saw open jaws of the Hollywood Alien, impudently teased by a midge at its very nostrils.
Scroll of the mouse wheel used to turn it into 16 mountainous islands that ancient Ptolemy populated with ever-cheered-up Satyrs.
Last year I’ve already been through a flight to another hemisphere with an irretrievable loss of 5 hours of life. Then, overburned due to ruthless pace of the capital, I took a ply at currently popular Thailand. Urban exhaustion was rapidly cured with Siamese placebo, but now the Earth has made another turn around the Sun and I feel creative frustration over again. Now, take 2: I am in Bangkok but I’m not going to stay in Thai land for long. This time I’m heading to Vietnam or more precisely to the very whirlpool of the tropical ocean.
Con Dao was my password in the country of Ho Chi Minh, my passport and my ticket. Narrowing their eyelids even more on hearing Slavic accent, the Vietnamese, who do not really honor English, when asked concisely phrased questions, pointed me in the right direction after all. I didn’t feel like trusting airlines with my life so I decided to get to the archipelago the way Napoleon got to Saint Helena – by water. Well, 11 hours from Vũng Tàu to Con Dao dragged on much less painfully than a preceding flight. Here we go, land, covered in jungles, appears in the distance and my soul silently thanks for being treated with beauty. Photo insideasiatours.com
Heat, lack of shadow and presence of mosquito by no means spoiled the euphoria. The only thing to cut you down to size was communication with aborigines who preferred a selection of gestures to main international language. If it wasn’t for the name of the hotel far-sightedly written down with all the appropriate hyphens over the letters, I’d have had to feel myself like a Robinson trying to make contact with Friday.
In Con Dao there were those who can be seen walking along coasts of Bora-Bora, Bali and Mauritius: same busy bees from offices and business centers, possessors of fat wallets and strong partnership ties, who try to escape the city. But, unlike abovementioned places, 200 kilometers away from the capital of Vietnam it is still and calm on white sand beaches that aren’t glossy with numerous tourists. Corals and sea bottom dwellers are visible under water table. One can visit them only provided accurate dress-code abidance in the shape of scuba diver suit and an oxygen container. With any luck there’s a chance to see a dugong come up from the water – a sea cow, depopulated by humans to the amount of a couple of dozens zooids. And if you give some of your hard-earned to employees of local National park, you’ll enjoy a cute scene of a turtle laying posterity in the sand.Photo trailfinders.com
I was cutting through Con Dao on a rented bike having lost the track of time. Slightly cloudy sky was favorably sailing over my head suggesting I follow it. Some time later, maybe, ok? Next year a new marker is sure to appear on my touristic map. Just let me enjoy the balance of civilization and nature that I hold so dear
Ancient Fez medina is firmly holding time in a criss-crossing maze of tiny alleyways and picturesque shops. The medieval town of craftsmen does not recognize modern technology, however, it is not difficult to trace a full production of cute handbag with embossed lettering. The leather for souvenir is produced there, in courtyards, and at a reasonable cost a tannery owner would reveal details of folk art with a millennial history.
Kyrgyzstan is called Middle Asian Switzerland. Mountains, rivers, waterfalls, caves, cols and green meadows aren’t a speck inferior in terms of aesthetics to European ones yet travelers haven't duly appreciated this country so far. Across-the-board exploration of the land by the state’s guests has only just begun. And alongside hotels that are being swiftly erected, ordinary yurts are still offered for residence to feel local natural.
Six million years ago, in faraway Mongolia a deep crater of an extinct volcano was gradually filled to the brims with water, turning into a wonderful lake. Water ran high with gusts of wind, and sparkled in the sun like precious jewel, so no wonder that along with the official name of Hövsgöl Lake, this nature wonder has a more poetic name of the Dark Blue Pearl.
Finally, one of our favorite categories reached the city, where dollars are considered as the main currency. Thus, we will not have to go around exchange offices and constantly convert prices. So, we go to such a different and exciting New York to spend our 10 dollars.
A function of UNESCO World Heritage Committee is to work in the most careful manner year after year on studying objects that constitute outstanding culture civilizations and are unique in their origins. Under number 569 of an impressive list of the organization city of Gjirokastër, the one from the south of Albania, is located – it is it we are going to study today through the length and breadth.
Marina Orlova is a project manager in a cultural and public organization. Working on one of her international projects, she met her love - Wim, a guy from Belgium. She succeeded to visit his country only when Ukraine obtained visa-free regime and Marina shared with OUTLOOK her observations about how the Belgians live, what they eat for breakfast and how they relax.
Iceland is a ‘country of ice and fire’, ‘country of thousand rivers and lakes’, countless waterfalls and geysers. There, like in a fairy tale, again and again, you feel like pinching yourself to check if you are dreaming or does it all really exist…
Impressions of this city depend much on what you have visited before being introduced to it. After Los Angeles it may seem very business-like and culturally rich, after New York – provincial and old-fashioned somehow. In any case, it has a bright and memorable face of a gentleman from Massachusetts.
Someone compares Jaipur with lace tablecloth; others with a box of pink marshmallows; and some admirers claim this is a hive densely inhabited by bees. However, everyone agrees on one thing: there is the wonderful air full of freedom which cannot be found in Europe. It fills the lungs and breathing it a traveller loses count of hours and even centuries.
In Japan there is a city with the citizens who trust each other. It seems that they drink water from one source that flows along their houses. As well, they wash hands after the meals in the same places. Satoyama in translation means an ideal place for life in harmony with the nature. It is situated in Northern prefecture Gifu that is isolated from the rest of the world with the mountain tops and rice fields.
In the world there is an unusual place where the biggest number of twins are born. Although at first glance it looks like a mystical coincidence, statistics makes you believe in miracles. The Indian state of Kerala can boast of a village where unusual things happen. Kodhini is the place with more twins than anywhere else in the world. Actually, there is almost no explanation for this.
To visit three countries over one day – it is possible if you are in Aachen. Situated amid Germany, Belgium and the Netherlands, small student town took in features of medieval culture that reflected in its astonishing architecture. Yelena Buravtsova visited the town for it to win her heart with its off-beat monuments, streets paved with stone blocks, cozy cafés, one of a kind printed spice cake, museums and spectacular races.
Experienced travelers tell that one could watch the ruins of ancient settlements in the Andes during several months, moving from one region to another. Particularly, the richest one in archaeological complexes of is the western coast of the Southern continent. A long time ago, some of them, such as Machu Picchu, have become popular with tourists, others are just beginning to open their doors to curious people.
When moving to a new country, more often than not people tend to get settled nearby emigrants like themselves. It is pretty convenient: accommodation isn’t expensive, job can be found right on the location and there is no need to study a new language – everyone around understands you. This is how national ghettos appear.
Judging by the reviews of the majority of tourists who visited Istanbul, many of them did not reach Asian part of the main Turkish metropolis, or did not have a proper walk there. The best case, they just saw SabihaGökçen International Airport and ferry docks, a destination of leisure cruses from Europe, where on the way one can feed with bread seagulls swooping overhead.
Prague... It is romantic, decadent, sad and cheerful, sublime and spiritual, reflected in the flapping wings of well-fed seagulls on the Charles Bridge, in the mirror pools of Vltava River... Prague is a very attractive and slightly strange European city. Creative copywriter Masha Goldman once spent several days there and told us about Prague charms.
Today OUTLOOK travels along the cities and countries that are considered as the most interesting from the point of view of geography and administrative management. Moreover, they are enclaves as they are located within the territories of other states.
Only an abandoned artificial archipelago with traces of extinct civilizations can better than a deserted island! Cadent splash of oars that plows blue dreams of the Pacific Ocean quells drumroll of ecstasy in your temples while preparing will and mind to the meeting with the greatest mystery of Micronesia. Nan Madol lies empty for more than one hundred years...