Hagia Sophia is old. Very old. The building that currently stands on the first of Istanbul’s famous seven hills dates back almost 1,500 years and has had a remarkable and colorful history. It’s also a beautiful place to visit.
The Gran Hotel Cuidad de Mexico is an Art Nouveau gem in the heart of Mexico City’s historic district.
Mexico City’s impressive National Museum of Anthropology showcases the region’s endlessly rich and diverse pre-Columbian cultural heritage.
Sitting on top of Mandalay Hill, Sutaungpyei Pagoda features a large patio that offers a wonderful views over Mandalay City and the Ayeyarwaddy.
It’s one of the oldest–and from all appearances, richest–of the many pagodas in Sagaing. Sitting high on top of Nga-pha Hill, it was built in 1312.
U Bein Bridge has become one of Myanmar’s iconic landmarks. Spanning 3/4 of a mile, the foot bridge is reputed to be the longest teak bridge in the world.
Oo Hmin Thone Sel Pagoda is an explosion of color, with almost 50 statues of the Buddha looking out from a cave-like crescent from a hilltop in Sagaing.
Covered from head to toe with thick white dust, crouching low on their launches, the young men and boys use angle grinders to carve statues of the Buddha out of solid blocks of white marble.
The open-air observation deck on the 44th floor of the Torre Latinoamericana offers spectacular views out over Mexico City.
Granada’s market is especially good. It’s large and colorful, pungent and bustling. And it’s the only show in town, so everything is concentrated here.
The Galata Bridge has multiple personalities. It spans the Golden Horn from Eminonu to Karakoy and provides both a real and symbolic link connecting two key parts of Istanbul.
In Istanbul, new is relative. The New Mosque might be newer than the Blue Mosque or Hagia Sophia, but having been completed in 1665 it is historic in its own right. And it’s also stunningly beautiful.
Ushuaia claims the title of the world’s southernmost city. These days its main industry is tourism, serving as a gateway to Antarctica. But the town also has charms of its own.
This 360° panorama captures the entire painting inside the Panorama of the Battle of Waterloo.
The docks and canals of Bruges once bustled at night. Now it’s still. And beautiful.
It’s the jail at the end of the world. It would have been very cold, very drafty, and, even compared to the low bar set by late-19th-century prisons, altogether rather unpleasant. But if you could sneak to a window, what a view!
Most churches count their blessings to have one patron saint. This one has two.
At Phonsavan’s morning market you can sit for a tasty bowl of freshly made steaming pho for breakfast or buy some local fruit. You can find much that looks familiar, and quite a lot that doesn’t.
That the Lemaire Channel is nicknamed “Kodak Gap” is a pretty good indication that it’s reliably scenic. When the conditions are right, it’s spectacular.
There are worse places to be than gliding silently at water level amongst the icebergs, seals, and penguins of Antarctica.
When you think of Antarctica, you probably think of lots of white and blue. I was surprised to find that it’s a lot more colorful than that.
Just outside Antigua, Pacaya is one of several active volcanos that make up the Central American Volcanic Arc.
If God and the government had their way, Antigua wouldn’t exist. But it’s a good thing it does. With charming Spanish colonial architecture, cobblestone streets, and a vibrant cultural life, it’s a wonderful place to visit.
From its fearsome gold naga guarding the main stairs, its incredibly lavish gold and red interior, and multi-tiered roof, the Haw Pha Bang at Luang Prabang’s Royal Palace looks ancient. But it’s not.
The interior of Old Montreal’s Notre Dame Basilica has to rank it as one of the most stunning churches or cathedrals in North America.
Central America is where American school buses go to retire. In the balmy tropical climes of places like Guatemala and Honduras, they’re given a new, colorful lease on life.
We’ve made it to the top of Mount Kilimanjaro. 19,341 feet. We’re on top of Africa, far above the clouds. And though we’re right next to the equator, it’s very, very cold and there are thick ice glaciers.
Cenote Xkeken, near Valladolid, is one of the prettiest of the 3,000 or so underground cenotes scattered across Mexico’s Yucatan peninsula.
Vientiane’s waterfront seems purpose-built for beautiful sunsets. With a wide promenade and park, it’s well used. And right across the river is Thailand.
You don’t have to be a fan of Downton Abbey to appreciate the beauty of Highclere Castle sitting on a stately hill in the English countryside of Hampshire about two hours west of London.
One of the world’s most visited museums, the Smithsonian’s Air and Space Museum has an incredible array of original artifacts from the history of flight and space exploration.
Chichen Itza is one of the most famous, most impressive, and most visited of the Mayan ruins sites on Mexico’s Yucatan Peninsula.
Guatemala City isn’t a popular tourist destination, in large part because of the scourge of violent crime, but there are some things worth seeing in this otherwise crowded and poverty-stricken city.
There’s much to love about Zihuatanejo on Mexico’s Pacific coast, and the beach fish market is one of the town’s gems.
Tips and gear recommendations if you’re going to climb Kilimanjaro for the first time. Includes suggestions for choosing a guide, mountain etiquette, and what to expect.
The rugged, mountainous terrain of northern Laos is beautiful. While well off the beaten track and not really on the road to anywhere else, Luang Namtha and Oudomxai provinces are well worth seeing.
Istanbul’s mosques dominate the city’s skyline, and their understated and elegant interiors can be stunningly beautiful.
Guatemalans sure love their fireworks. And Chichicastenango, in the Guatemalan highlands, is not a place that considers fireworks only night-time entertainment.
Known to the locals as “Straddie,” North Stradbroke Island near Brisbane separates southern Moreton Bay from the Pacific Ocean. With miles of spectacular ocean beaches and an abundance of local marine life such as whales, sharks, turtles, and dolphins, it’s a popular summer holiday destination.
The Vietnam Military History Museum in central Hanoi celebrates the Vietnamese victories of the 20th century, first over the French and then the United States. And, of course, it presents a version sanctioned by the Vietnamese Communist Government.