Known as “the marvelous city,” Rio de Janeiro is one of the hottest travel destinations in the world, and the most visited city in all of the southern hemisphere. Nature lovers and city slickers alike can find something to enjoy in the various terrains Rio has to offer, from its mountains and rain forests to the beaches and concrete playground of the city center. With the Summer Olympics quickly approaching, the costs to visit Rio de Janeiro are expected to skyrocket.
Whew, now that black Friday and cyber Monday have passed, the rest of us can start our holiday shopping experience without getting trampled, elbowed in the face, or pepper-sprayed. If you have a loved one that loves travel, we’ve assembled the following list of travel related gear and gadgets to help give you some ideas on what to get for your favorite vagabond.
We arrived in China almost two weeks ago. The country has made a good impression so far. This is actually our second trip to China, our first being five years ago to the south (from Hong Kong to the Yunnan). After five years, this behemoth of a country is advancing in leaps and bounds. Economic growth can be witnessed everywhere. At the same time, ancient culture and personal experiences await around every corner.
After arriving in Beijing late in the evening, we found our hotel down one of Beijing’s many Hutong alleyways. These microcosms of Chinese culture, where locals live in close proximity to one another and share a tight-knit neighborhood, are slowly being torn apart and replaced with towering skyscrapers. Beijing as a whole is impressive. It’s huge and modern in some parts, but ancient and cultural in others. We visited Beihai park, where crowds perform Tai Chi in unison along the shore of an ancient lake with a modern skyline as a backdrop.
With summer fast approaching, many will be jet-setting to explore foreign and exotic places. While you may have set your budget and selected the cheapest airfare and hotel, you could get accidently get sucked into a financial hole simply by doing some souvenir shopping. To make sure that you don’t get ripped off and spend a small fortune on a matryoshka doll, learn how to bargain like a pro.
London: city of bankers and the super rich. Well, it’s certainly that, but London is also a raggle taggle city of many other kinds of life and the kind of place where you never really know what’s going to be round the next corner. So if you want to see the city without the enormous expense, don’t be satisfied with the usual tourist hangouts, get around.
India is huge, fascinating, multicultural, and overwhelming. It’s also very inexpensive, so hopefully this week’s Photo Friday will tempt you to visit.
In 2006, we spent a month in Vietnam. We crossed the border from China in the north near Sapa, where we spent an amazing few days amongst the Hmong people and their beautifully terraced rice fields. Next we ventured down to Hanoi, and then spent a few days on a boat in the Halong Bay. Afterwards we made our way south, but for now we have plenty of photos to show of Northern Vietnam. If you find yourself wandering around Southeast Asia, don’t miss this amazing country, especially Sapa (sometimes spelled “Sa Pa”) and the surrounding areas.
Phil Paoletta is a guy after our own hearts, simply because he willingly chose to go to West Africa. It’s an amazing place, and if you read Phil’s awesomely named blog, Phil in the Blank, you’ll get a sense of what it’s like. Don’t let his “loose stool count” scare you away. Seriously.
Cambodia is one of our favorite places in the entire world. If you haven’t been there, put it on your list. Here are a few great pics of Cambodia from feleciacruz.
If you’ve traveled in a developing country, you’ve probably been in a situation where you need to negotiate a price. Actually, you’ve probably been in this situation hundreds of times. Whether it’s a taxi ride or a souvenir, in many places in the world it is perfectly normal to negotiate for a price.
Many tourists and travelers have trouble with this concept. Depending on where you are, it might only cost a few bucks at the most. But to that local shopkeeper or taxi driver, it’s a lot of money. Why not just give them that little extra that they are asking for? What’s the harm? They need the money, and they are supporting their families, right?