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  • Travel Features by Annie Biziou van Pol | Rough Guides
    Samoa Tuvalu Vanuatu Central America the Caribbean Bahamas Belize Bermuda Costa Rica Cuba Dominican Republic El Salvador Grenada Guatemala Jamaica Nicaragua Panama Trinidad Tobago Europe Albania Armenia Austria Belarus Belgium Bosnia and Herzegovina Bosnia Herzegovina Bulgaria Croatia Cyprus Czech Republic Denmark England Estonia Finland France Georgia Germany Greece Hungary Iceland Ireland Italy Kazakhstan Kosovo Latvia Lithuania Malta Montenegro Netherlands Norway Poland Portugal Romania Russia Scotland Serbia Slovakia Slovenia Spain Sweden Switzerland Turkey Ukraine United Kingdom Wales Middle East Abu Dhabi Dubai Iran Israel Jordan Oman Qatar Saudi Arabia North America Canada Greenland Mexico USA South America Argentina Bolivia Brazil Chile Colombia Ecuador Guyana Peru Uruguay Venezuela UK View by Theme Activity Architecture Beaches Belief Boats sailing Budget travel Coasts islands Crafts and markets Cycling Deserts Discovery Diving snorkeling Everyday Life Extreme Adventure sports Family friendly Festivals events Food drink Heritage ruins Indigenous culture Leisure Luxury Mountains Museums art Music National parks reserves Nature Nightlife Novelty Off the beaten track People Photography Railway journeys Relaxation Road trips Romance Shopping Structures Surfing Tourist Trail Tradition Transport Walking trekking Wildlife Winter sports Features Annie Biziou van Pol Sort by Date Popularity Diving in the secret atolls of the Maldives One of the lesser known but largest in the Maldives the Huvadhu atoll is home to a bounty of marine life Away from the resorts and honeymooners Annie Biziou van Pol enjoys a spectacular display of rays turtles and reef sharks as she dives in the southern part of this collection of islands Ibrahim unfurls a faded map Annie Biziou van Pol 06 03 2014 Travel Offers Travel insurance Hotels Hostels Car hire Tours Trending Articles Why now s the time to visit Nottingham England By David Atkinson The top gifts for travellers By Rough Guides Editors 6 reasons to visit Bogotá South America

    Original URL path: http://www.roughguides.com/author/annie-biziou-van-pol/ (2016-02-16)
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  • Looking for the true Timbuktu | Travel Feature | Rough Guides
    of many of the Sahara s Tuareg people who were once half promised their own country Azawad by the French Tuareg autonomy in the north in 2012 was brief The Tuareg separatists were soon overrun by three different self declared bands of religious zealot bandits Al Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb Ansar Dine and the Movement for Unity and Jihad in West Africa Alliances shift quickly but AQIM came to dominate and clamped the moderate Muslims of the northern towns into a violent interpretation of sharia law banning most forms of popular and traditional culture whether Islamic or international in origin Smoking banned Music banned Unveiled women banned There were amputations and stonings Timbuktu s 333 saints were mocked and their graves and memorials desecrated And Timbuktu s old Arabic manuscripts that had been gathered in the libraries and scholars houses of the city since it first became a university town in the fourteenth century and covering subjects as wide ranging as mathematics optometry and astronomy were treated as deeply suspicious at best and at worst as fit only for burning As Mali s status tumbled from something of a bastion of liberty and democracy in the West African region to a shredded carcass of a country it was the name of its most famous town that trended well a little on Twitter But for every terrorism geek sharing information about the different jihadist players around Timbuktu and claiming or denying the involvement of the Algerian security service in acts of false flag terrorism there was another tweet saying something along the lines of Just found out Timbuktu s for real No way My gran s always talking about going to Timbuktu LOL The French came out of the blue in January when it looked as if the jihadists might threaten towns close to Bamako and quickly expelled them from key urban centres including Timbuktu As I write there have been suicide attacks and outbreaks of street fighting in Gao but Timbuktu is calm although most Tuareg and Arabic speaking residents have fled fearing reprisals The FCO still advises avoiding travel to the whole country Personal reflections I have a trivial connection with Timbuktu it was where a friend and I were going in 1977 when we first used the hitchhiking techniques we had practised in Hampshire to explore the world Our thumbs took us to Dover Where are you two off to then through France and Spain across the void of the Sahara with French truckers and into a different world on the banks of the Niger We tasted our first mangoes sampled malaria sweated it out with the dictator s men in their foul police stations and spent four days on a wooden pinasse squatting among slabs of rock salt poling up the Niger River towards our goal It was 17 years after independence and even longhairs like us were still being called patron boss Timbuktu was wretchedly poor we found the city was miles north of the

    Original URL path: http://www.roughguides.com/article/looking-for-the-true-timbuktu/ (2016-02-16)
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  • Travel Features by Richard Trillo | Rough Guides
    sports Family friendly Festivals events Food drink Heritage ruins Indigenous culture Leisure Luxury Mountains Museums art Music National parks reserves Nature Nightlife Novelty Off the beaten track People Photography Railway journeys Relaxation Road trips Romance Shopping Structures Surfing Tourist Trail Tradition Transport Walking trekking Wildlife Winter sports Features Richard Trillo Sort by Date Popularity Sci fi plants of Mount Kenya Kenya The Kikuyu people venerated Mount Kenya as the dwelling place of God They believed if they climbed to the peaks they would find spiritual inspiration Straddling the equator and piercing the clouds Africa s second highest mountain the eroded remains of a vast prehistoric volcano towering 5199m from the plains is a steeper and quicker Richard Trillo 10 10 2013 The great African meat feast Kenya Ask any expat East African what food they miss most and they ll tell you nyama choma In The Gambia it s known as afra and in South Africa it s what you have at a braai All over the continent roast or grilled meat is the heart of any big meal and whenever possible it is the Richard Trillo 07 10 2013 Ten things to do in Kenya after your safari Whatever your budget Kenya has no shortage of post safari pursuits writes Richard Trillo author of the Rough Guide to Kenya and Kenya Programme Manager at Expert Africa Whether you re after a relaxing beach break or another adventure there s plenty to see and do in Kenya once you ve left the wildlife behind Share a beach house Richard Trillo 29 07 2013 Looking for the true Timbuktu Timbuktu has long been a mythical and compelling place a punchline for many who never knew it really existed and its recent problems are just the latest in a long line of

    Original URL path: http://www.roughguides.com/author/richardtrillo/ (2016-02-16)
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  • Life on GMT: Things To Do In Gozo | Rough Guides
    leftover Britishness Take your time In Gozo everyone seems to have time Time to sit beneath the citadel in It Tokk literally the Meeting Place the main square of Gozo s charming little capital Victoria Time to chat in the shade of an oleander tree or the oversized Parish church that dominates every village square Gozitans make time for visitors too Ask the way and you may find yourself accompanied rather than told That is not to say they intrude they don t not even on celebrities Which is one reason the likes of Gary Neville and Billy Connolly escape here Follow in Brangelina s footsteps One of Connolly s haunts is secluded Mgarr Ix Xini He comes here to eat at the peaceful little fish restaurant that sits at the head of this steep sided rocky creek from March to November A narrow path flanked by sweet smelling wild fennel and rich aromatic thyme winds up the rock above clear waters The sea here is perfect for swimming snorkelling and diving protected from the prevailing northwesterly winds Until recently it was truly off the beaten track but Mgarr Ix Xini has just landed on the map as the place where Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt filmed their latest movie By the Sea In the film this is the South of France in the 1970s and the restaurant s tiny interior is the French village shop Colourful shelves and a few props remain and you can now sit on the Tamarisk shaded terrace sipping wine mis en bouteille par Jolie Pitt Marvel at Gozo s magnificence Mgarr Ix Xini is just one of Gozo s many coastal attractions Edward Lear master of the nonsense rhyme who came here to rest walk and paint described the island s landscape as pomskizillious and gromphiberous being as no words can describe its magnificence The landscape is indeed amazing from the dramatic Ta Cenc cliffs plunging 145m into the sea to a strange clay hill like a giant grey doorknob and the rich red sands of Ramla Beach arguably the best beach in the country At Calypso s Cave meanwhile Homer s Odysseus is said to have been held willing hostage by the charming sea nymph The collapsed cave isn t much to look at but the view is stunning and it isn t hard to see how Odysseus might have fallen into GMT and forgotten to go home Get salty Gozo has been feeding a human population for 7000 years In fact it may have been the first place in Malta to be settled with farmers arriving by sea from Sicily just 90km to the north Evidence of this can be seen on the stretch of coast just west of the little resort of Marsalforn Scooped out cliffs of smooth golden sandstone like desert dunes form the backdrop to chequer boards of seaside salt pans It s a place that time forgot where a few families still produce salt as it has been

    Original URL path: http://www.roughguides.com/article/things-to-do-in-gozo/ (2016-02-16)
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  • Travel Features by Juliet Rix | Rough Guides
    Papua New Guinea Samoa Tuvalu Vanuatu Central America the Caribbean Bahamas Belize Bermuda Costa Rica Cuba Dominican Republic El Salvador Grenada Guatemala Jamaica Nicaragua Panama Trinidad Tobago Europe Albania Armenia Austria Belarus Belgium Bosnia and Herzegovina Bosnia Herzegovina Bulgaria Croatia Cyprus Czech Republic Denmark England Estonia Finland France Georgia Germany Greece Hungary Iceland Ireland Italy Kazakhstan Kosovo Latvia Lithuania Malta Montenegro Netherlands Norway Poland Portugal Romania Russia Scotland Serbia Slovakia Slovenia Spain Sweden Switzerland Turkey Ukraine United Kingdom Wales Middle East Abu Dhabi Dubai Iran Israel Jordan Oman Qatar Saudi Arabia North America Canada Greenland Mexico USA South America Argentina Bolivia Brazil Chile Colombia Ecuador Guyana Peru Uruguay Venezuela UK View by Theme Activity Architecture Beaches Belief Boats sailing Budget travel Coasts islands Crafts and markets Cycling Deserts Discovery Diving snorkeling Everyday Life Extreme Adventure sports Family friendly Festivals events Food drink Heritage ruins Indigenous culture Leisure Luxury Mountains Museums art Music National parks reserves Nature Nightlife Novelty Off the beaten track People Photography Railway journeys Relaxation Road trips Romance Shopping Structures Surfing Tourist Trail Tradition Transport Walking trekking Wildlife Winter sports Features Juliet Rix Sort by Date Popularity Life on GMT Gozo Maybe Time It starts as soon as the ferry pulls away from the quay Heading out from the bustle of the main island of Malta into the shimmering blue waters of the Gozo Channel the Mediterranean sun warm on your skin tensions just ebb away Sliding past the tiny island of Comino its solitary defensive tower giving Juliet Rix 02 07 2015 Travel Offers Travel insurance Hotels Hostels Car hire Tours Trending Articles Why now s the time to visit Nottingham England By David Atkinson The top gifts for travellers By Rough Guides Editors 6 reasons to visit Bogotá South America s underrated capital By Olivia Rawes

    Original URL path: http://www.roughguides.com/author/juliet-rix/ (2016-02-16)
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  • Top Tourist Attractions 2015 | Rough Guides
    underground vault to house the Magna Carta an in the round film explaining its importance and history a complete circular walk around the castle s ancient walls and access to both the Victorian male and female prisons for the first time The Whitney Museum of American Art New York USA One of the great shames of the art world is the amount of exceptional artwork kept in storage and rarely seen by the public What is the point after all of owning a large art collection if you don t have the space to exhibit it The Whitney finally solves its space problem in 2015 with the opening of its new building at 18 000 square feet the largest column free museum gallery in New York City A cantilevered entrance beneath the High Line sets the tone for a graceful light filled gallery with river views and of course some of the world s greatest artworks IceCave Iceland Ever wondered what the inside of a glacier looks like White Deepest blue Both Well wonder no more Book a trip to Iceland this year and you can visit the country s latest attraction the IceCave Here you can venture into a series of tunnels and caves running inside Langjökull Glacier which stretch as much as 300 metres into the solid ice about 30 metres below the surface These mind bending proportions make the IceCave one of the largest man made ice structures in the world and well worth donning multiple layers of clothing to see Lost and Found festival Malta In April 2015 Malta will make its debut on the electronic music scene From the 3rd to the 5th DJ Annie Mac will host Lost and Found a new festival in St Paul s Bay on the north shore and Ta Qali National Park near Rabat With a line up of international dance DJs Lost and Found promises daytime pool and boat dance parties against an ocean backdrop and nighttime open air raves with a chilled out vibe You won t even have to camp either packages including hotel accommodation start from 148 225 per person Dreamland Margate UK 2015 is set to be a great year for Margate as the seaside resort s most famous attraction Dreamland finally reopens The UK s oldest amusement park is being reimagined as the world s first heritage amusement park by designer Wayne Hemmingway its centerpiece the Grade II listed Scenic Railway Britain s oldest rollercoaster Numerous rides from other parks are being rebuilt around it many of which are the only remaining examples of their type Ride the 1950s Hurricane Jets and the 1940s Caterpillar that once stood at Pleasureland Southport before strolling past the large Tiffany lamps donated from the Blackpool Illuminations collection TreeTop Crazy Rider New South Wales Two words have never belonged together more than rollercoaster and zipline Well the crazy folks at Ourimbah State Forest on Australia s Central Coast certainly think so Their new 1km long adventure must

    Original URL path: http://www.roughguides.com/article/top-tourist-attractions/ (2016-02-16)
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  • Travel Features by Helen Ochyra | Rough Guides
    From its dripping pristine rainforests to its towering mist enveloped mountains there is a landscape that just begs you to get out on two feet and explore But the real joy of trekking in Thailand here is nothing to do with the scenery it s the people that make every step count from Helen Ochyra 10 12 2015 How to carry cash abroad You may have become accustomed to depending on those little pieces of plastic when at home but on the road paying for that bowl of noodles train ticket or local beer is unlikely to mean simply whipping out the Visa or waving your Amex Carrying your money abroad often means literally carrying it in Helen Ochyra 25 11 2015 Go it alone solo travel in Thailand Thailand is the quintessential backpacker destination Here you can make the first footprints on secluded sands dance shoeless under a full moon and swim beneath cascading waterfalls Running through Thailand s rainforests and temples and looping around its islands and beaches is the so called banana pancake trail a well worn tried and tested backpacker route that has Helen Ochyra 24 11 2015 On location follow in the footsteps of Macbeth in Skye Scotland See a picture of Skye suspect computer enhancement That s just how it works until you get there Then you cross the bridge and slowly it dawns on you Skye really does look like another world The grass really is that emerald green that ll be the rain the mountains really are that sheer the water Helen Ochyra 13 10 2015 Undiscovered Southeast Asia 9 places to get off the tourist trail Southeast Asia is the quintessential backpacker destination all noodle stands grungy hostels and full moon parties right Not necessarily There are still plenty of authentic Southeast Asian escapes You just need to know where to find them Start here 1 Trek the path less followed in Umphang Thailand Want to trek Thailand in peace Helen Ochyra 01 10 2015 12 hiking tips you need before setting off Walking just putting one foot in front of the other right How hard can that be Yes a walking trip is something that anyone can do but it is also something that is widely misunderstood Hiking boots that don t fit a water bottle that isn t big enough a phone battery that never lasts these Helen Ochyra 12 08 2015 8 unknown islands you need to discover in the British Isles Everybody knows the Isle of Man Guernsey Skye But what about the other 6000 odd British Isles Yes we did say 6000 From the chunky Shetland Islands in Scotland s far north to the sunny Isles of Scilly slung out from the coast of Cornwall the British Isles are made up of islands of all shapes and Helen Ochyra 06 08 2015 The Orange Blossom Coast the Spanish costa you ve never heard of Spain is known for its costas the sandy strands that attract thousands

    Original URL path: http://www.roughguides.com/author/helen-ochyra/ (2016-02-16)
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  • Ten perfect birdwatching trips | Travel Feature | Rough Guides
    Pampa Hermosa Reserve in the heart of the Peruvian cloud forest where a ban on tree felling has meant its numbers are flourishing The ten cabins at the lodge are built with local materials in the traditional style of the Asháninca jungle tribe The reserve is also home to a variety of unusual animals from armadillos to porcupines as well as a 600 year old cedar tree If you like wildlife watching made easy come to this successful example of where conservation is breeding convenience The best time for viewing the cock of the rock is September to November For details of bus companies and directions by car from San Ramón prices and reservations see www pampahermosalodge com Better birdwatching at Kingfisher Ecolodge Laos Situated in the fertile northern wetlands of a conservation area in Champasak Province Kingfisher Ecolodge blends perfectly with the natural environment Standing high on stilts its six bungalows spiky wooden roofs are enveloped in lush foliage Each is simply equipped and solar powered but their best feature is the enormous glass windows peering out over the emerald expanse from your little wooden island the sense of space and distance is almost overwhelming Close to the vibrant town of Pakse the spectacular waterfalls of the Bolaven Plateau and the Khmer ruins of Wat Phou Kingfisher is a good base for excursions And with opportunities nearby to go mountain biking and birdwatching there s little time to be bored Although it would be completely understandable if you d rather tuck into the home made cakes in the lodge s restaurant sit back and soak up the peace and quiet Kingfisher Ecolodge can be reached by taxi or public bus from Pakse s southern bus station Lak Pet station around 60km away For details of accommodation activities rates and booking see www kingfisherecolodge com Spot a giant ibis in Cambodia With only a hundred breeding pairs left in the world the giant ibis is a twitcher s dream sighting But as the population is confined largely to the wetlands of northern Cambodia the only realistic prospect of sighting this elusive creature is on a birdwatching tour to the Kulen Promtep Wildlife Sanctuary At this remote spot the government and the Sam Veasna Centre an ecotourism and wildlife conservation body have established an award winning programme that aims to link tourism species preservation and community development harmoniously Four day tours from Siam Reap to Tmatboey a village within the wildlife sanctuary are run exclusively through the Centre Once in the sanctuary visitors are led by guides from the village through wetlands and deciduous forest all the while on the lookout for the giant ibis or the white shouldered ibis which only nests here A fee is paid to the village conservation fund which goes towards schools and building fish ponds only if you spy one of these two birds while out walking with the guides Rather than limit the amount of funds going to conservation this provides a clear economic

    Original URL path: http://www.roughguides.com/article/10-perfect-birdwatching-escapes-2/ (2016-02-16)
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