Bhutan has many names, the last Shangri-La, the land of the thunder dragon, the land that time forgot, the world’s happiest country... Its a little bit like Khaleesi in Game of Thrones, call it whatever you want, but its pretty awesome. Bhutan has also become the next place to be if you want to do some soul-searching or stare dramatically in the distance. If the unique culture and interesting history can’t do the job for you, Dzongs and amazing scenery can also make for a good #OOTD background. I mean, if that’s all you’re looking for when travelling. Not judging.
Here’s my introduction to Bhutan and a quick guide on how to get there!
As you already know, Raja Ampat is insanely beautiful and offers exceptional diving. However, as with all things too good to be true, getting there is a little bit of a hassle. Fret not! I’m here to help! Here’s my Ultimate Guide to Raja Ampat dealing with how to get there, the million dollar question of live-aboard or resort and the best diving sites Raja Ampat has to offer.
Heaven is real and you can find it in Raja Ampat—an introduction to the most beautiful islands on the planet.
As a travel writer, one of the questions you get asked most often is where is your favourite place in the world. Since my virgin experience in June 2015, my answer has always been the same, Raja Ampat, Indonesia. I cannot begin to express my excitement and love I have for this place. It’s easy to see why—the landscapes are spectacular and like no other, the waters impossibly blue and the sand, a blinding shade of white. However, it is the soul of Raja Ampat that draws me in. The pureness of its landscape and its people, untouched by the crass hands of technology. Life here is simple, unadulterated and as it should be.
Depending on which guide you follow, Izmir is often one of the main recommendations, after Istanbul and Cappadocia of course. After hearing so much about Izmir and its glorious ruins, we decided to add it to the itinerary. What did I think? Well...
Ahh, Cappadocia, a place which name is almost synonymous to hot air balloon rides over phallic rocks. Certainly, there must be some other things to do there, right? Right. Without further ado, here’re my suggestions for things to do in Cappadocia.
I’ve been in a bit of pensive mood lately, work has been overwhelming and nobody, including myself seems to be truly happy anymore. So, I’ve decided to reminisce and maybe think of ways in which I could be happier. As the saying goes, when life gives you lemons, edit a bunch of photos in Lightroom and write a list. So here’s a list of reasons why Bali is no better than Cappadocia when it comes to getting over an ex, dealing with some nasty sh*t, or when you’re just done with life*.
*disclaimer, I have never actually read Eat Pray Love because its cliché and dumb and I cry easily.
There’s one constant that you will find in nearly every bucketlist or things-to-do-before-you-die clickbait—taking a hot air balloon ride in Cappadocia, Turkey. At about 160 Euros per person on average (for an hour’s ride), a hot air balloon ride does not come cheap. Here are some photos to convince you that 160 Euros for a lifetime of memories is worth it.
Istanbul, the most populous city in Turkey and its de-facto economic, cultural and historical centre. Historically, its location was of great strategic importance. It nests directly on the silk road and is the only sea route between the black sea and the Mediterranean. Today, it is the only country that is both in continental Europe and Asia.
Obviously, 48 hours does not do justice to Istanbul’s extremely unique and historically rich culture. But nonetheless, for those short on time, this will do.
The second largest city Morocco and home to the oldest functioning University in the world (yes, it’s not Oxford!), Fes promises an insight to the amazing culture and rich history of Morocco.
As unoriginal as the name might be, Riad Fes was stunningly beautiful and elegant. A Relais & Chateaux property, Riad Fes has won multiple awards in luxury accommodation and is certainly regarded by many as the best hotel in Fes. It boasts of three patios and two bars. However, I felt that service was lacking.
A review and photo essay of a day trip to Volubilis and Meknes from Fes.
And yes, there are Roman ruins in Morocco.
Immediately when you arrive in Sahara, for the first or the tenth time, you notice the stillness. An incredible, absolute silence prevails outside the towns; and within, even in busy places like the markets, there is a hushed quality in the air, as if the quiet were a conscious force which, resenting the intrusion of sound, minimizes and disperses sound straightaway.
...Perhaps the logical question to ask at this point is: Why go? The answer is that when a man has been there and undergone the baptism of solitude he can't help himself. Once he has been under the spell of the vast luminous, silent country, no other place is quite strong enough for him, no other surroundings can provide the supremely satisfying sensation of existing in the midst of something that is absolute. He will go back, whatever the cost in time or money, for the absolute has no price.”
Enroute to the Sahara, we found ourselves in a traditional Berber market in M’hamid. This was a special treat because the market occurs only every Wednesday and traditionally, women were not allowed. But seeing as we were hapless tourists, our guide decided that an exception was possible for us.
Situated at the foothills of the High Atlas Mountains and 60km away from Marrakesh, Ourika Valley was the perfect day trip from the hustle and bustle of busy, busy Marrakesh. Our route was a simple one, visit Argan oil cooperatives, take a casual stroll along Ourika River and pop in some Berber villages along the way.
In my futile efforts to be as helpful as possible, here’s a short summary of what to expect in these 6 attractions and whether I’d recommend it or not.
A beginner's guide to the Souks of Marrakesh
A beginner's guide to the Medina of Marrakesh
A beginner's guide to Morrocan food and the gastronomical delights of Tagine.