Uzbekistan might not be on the regular tourist trail these days, but there was a time when travellers and traders would come through the country in droves.
Dating back to these days of old, it’s the extraordinary history and remarkable culture that can catch you by surprise when you travel in Central Asia. There’s so much to see and discover and these seven things that you probably don’t know about Uzbekistan are just the beginning…
At first glance, the Day of the Dead in Mexico City sounds like it would be a solemn, quiet affair, but don’t be fooled.
In fact, it’s filled with brightly coloured altars, delicious celebration food and spirits of all kinds – from visiting ancestors to a cool mezcal cocktail! So what do you need to know to survive the deathly trip of a lifetime?
Yogyakarta is definitely one our favourite cities in South East Asia. That’s a pretty big claim, but we have our reasons; from the wonderful temples on the outskirts of the city, to rural village life which exists just a short bike ride from the central hustle and bustle.
As the cultural hub of Java, Yogyakarta has so much to offer. Whether you enjoy perusing the eye-catching graffiti covered walls, getting arty in a batik class, or exploring the surrounding area for a flavour of local life. Adventure enthusiasts can also get their thrills, with the choice of jeep rides up nearby Mount Merapi, rafting, and caving.
Bagan (or Pagan if you can speak Burmese) is a spectacular ancient city in Central West Burma that expands for miles across arid land. Founded in the first century BC, the city flourished in the 9th and 10th centuries AD to become the Bagan we travel to today.
Temples and pagodas galore sit amid this epic landscape, which lend the area the iconic image you’ve likely seen in travel magazines and on travel websites time and time again. Detached from the hustle and bustle of Yangon, the city serves as the perfect place to get to grips with one of our favourite modes of transport in Burma: the humble bicycle.
Meeting local people is one of the great highlights of any travel experience and most travellers will want to photograph the interesting faces they encounter on the road.
The problem is though, how to do this without annoying and offending the very people you want to remember.
Most people who travel to Malaysia include a beach visit and Pulau Langkawi often gets all the attention.
But on the opposite side of Malaysia exist two little gems that offer pristine beaches, a lush backdrop, ample adventures and are known to have a more laidback vibe – Pulau Besar (big island) and Pulau Kecil (small island), otherwise known as the Perhentian Islands.
We all know that the more we prepare for our Himalayan trek, the greater chance we have of successfully rising to the challenge. But how?
Before I list what got me to the top (and back) on my first Nepal trek, I need to let you know that I’m no gung-ho hiker. I love bush walking and keep relatively active, but I wouldn’t consider myself an adventure junkie by a long shot.
In many Asian countries it’s often difficult to get past the ‘tourist menu’ of chicken curry and chips.
This was the dilemma for Sally Johnson on her tour of Sri Lanka, until she discovered that staying in local guesthouses and sharing family meals was the secret to enjoying the real Sri Lankan cuisine…
Going on holiday is synonymous with three of life’s purest pleasures: eating, drinking and relaxing.
So if, like me, you’re someone who enjoys the sadistic ritual of regular exercise, then you are a prime candidate for succumbing to ‘Travel Bulge Syndrome’ – TBS – where you feel you’ve earned the right to relax your diet and exercise routine a little, so you go ahead and eat your bodyweight in patatas bravas and chorizo all day every day. And follow it up with gelato. And a beer. Because, you know, you earned it, right?