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  • Everest Base Camp

    Mount Everest Base Camp Trek

  • Inca Trail to Machu Picchu

    Inca Trail Preparation and Packing List

  • Galapagos Islands

    The Galapagos Islands - Isabela Island

  • Cooking Class in Rome

    Nonna Lina's Italian Cooking Class

  • Green Travel

    Travel with Increased Green Awareness

  • Colosseum Tours

    Colosseum Underground Tour

  • St. Peter's Dome Rome

    Top 5 Photo Spots of St. Peter's Dome

  • Arenal Volcano

    Spotlight: Arenal Volcano National Park

  • Berber Villages

    Berber Villages around Imlil in Morocco

Recent Posts

13 December, 2013

Ice Hiking and Ice Climbing in Iceland

Crawling into an Ice Tunnel
In an Ice Tunnel

After climbing Mount Jebel Toubkal in Morocco last March and hiking the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu last May, I felt ready for another challenge "Hiking a glacier and climbing an ice wall in Iceland". So last November, when I went to Iceland I made sure we had sufficient time for this activity. It turned out to be a wonderful day, cold but sunny ... perfect for an ice hike. We decided to hike with a guide as glaciers can be very dangerous. There are many crevasses (cracks in the ice) - some of them really large and deep - covered by a little bit of snow, which only an experienced guide would be able to spot ...
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08 December, 2013

Meeting Lesimbi, a young Maasai from Tanzania

Children in a little Maasai village in Tanzania
Maasai children in Tanzania
By Luis Barreto:
This year I had the opportunity to visit Tanzania to work on a few videos for one of my clients. I knew very little about the country before I left cause I prefer not to look up too much information on the Internet before I travel but love being surprised by a country. Tanzania definitely gave me a very positive surprise. It was a wonderful and very interesting experience. 
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01 December, 2013

Top 5 Things to do in Quito Ecuador

Equatorial line in Quito in Ecuador the Middle of the World
Quito Ecuador Middle of the World
When you are in Quito, the capital of Ecuador, the first feeling that you will experience is one of euphoria for having made it to the mid-point of our vast globe. If that's not enough then you can also draw satisfaction from the fact that your are in the second highest capital of the world. Quito, with its 2 million and growing population, is nestled at an altitude of 2,850 and is only beaten by La Paz, Bolivia, as the highest capital city in the world. Therefore make sure to reserve some time in your itinerary to acclimatize. I visited Quito after I hiked the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu and before my visit to the wonderful Galapagos Islands. There are many things to do and see in and around Quito, in this post I will focus on my top 5 while in the city
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26 November, 2013

10 best Christmas Markets in Europe

Santa Claus Christmas market
Santa Claus

The holiday season is my favorite time of year. I love winter walks, the smell of hot chocolate, reading in front of the fireplace, ice-skating, family dinners, the beautiful decorations, reflecting on a year nearly gone by and ... visiting the many beautiful and unique Christmas markets. Last year I only managed to visit some Christmas markets in my home country, like the Antwerp Christmas market, the Brussels Christmas Market and the beautiful Ice Sculpture Festival and Christmas market in Bruges. This year however I plan to visit as many as possible, I already started some preparation and looked into the 10 best Christmas Market in Europe and also asked fellow travel bloggers for their Christmas market recommendations ... 
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20 November, 2013

In the Spotlight: Lake Powell National Park

Amazing Rock formations Lake Powell National Park
Lake Powell Boat Tour
I'm standing at the railing of the boat and stare in awe over the crystal clear blue waters at all the amazing rock formations, it feels so unreal, like I'm on another planet. No wonder this area has served as a film location for so many movies, Planet of the Apes being a well know example. I'm soaking the vistas surrounding me like a sponge and simply cannot stop gazing around. The wind is blowing through my hair and the sun is providing a pleasant warmth .. what a perfect day it is! I'm on a boat tour on the enchanting Lake Powell, Glen Canyon and am on my way to the famous Rainbow Bridge.
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13 November, 2013

10 extreme Travel Destinations

Driving a car on a snowy road
10 Extreme Travel Destinations
Stretching from Marrakech to the Galapagos Islands, Maui to Lapland and everywhere in-between there are hundreds of exciting and beautiful travel destinations. Millions of people look forward to their yearly holiday to discover another beautiful place, explore a new country, relax, spend time with their family while on vacation ... However, the face of tourism is quickly changing as people look more and more for something out of the ordinary. Adventurers, in particular, have an insatiable appetite for the extreme. Here are ten extreme travel destinations to seduce the daring adventurer ... 
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09 November, 2013

Galapagos Islands Photo Journey

a sea lion on Santa Cruz Island Galapagos
Sea lion
The Galapagos Islands - located about 1000 kilometers west of Ecuador - consists out of 21 islands disseminated on both sides of the equator. This paradise on earth is an archipelago of volcanic islands, Isabela Island is the most active one with 5 volcanoes still active. Some of the other main islands - amongst others - are Santa Cruz, Fernandina, Espanola, Floreana, San Cristobal and Bartolome. The many endemic species on the islands, helped Charles Darwin with his theory of evolution based upon natural selection. He noted for example that although the finches on each island belonged to the same family they all evolved differently to adapt to the specific conditions and environment on each island. I hope you'll enjoy my Galapagos Photo Journey of this nature lovers heaven.
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31 October, 2013

The Quintessential Guide to San Francisco

Photo from San Francisco skyline taken from the water
San Francisco
With its spectacular bridges, dizzying coastal vistas and vast cultural diversity, San Francisco is California's most evocative city. Known in particular for its cable cars, tasty Dungeness crabs with sourdough bread, a dramatic park and a famous federal prison that was once home to Al Capone, Robert Stroud - the notorious Birdman of Alcatraz - and George Kelly. Many people visit San Francisco during a West Road Trip; one day will definitely not be sufficient to explore this amazing city, even two or three days might not be enough to see San Francisco in depth but it will at least allow you to scratch its seductive surface.
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26 October, 2013

Top 5 Photo Spots of St. Peter's Dome

View on the St. Peter's Basilica Dome from the Castle St. Angelo Terrace
St. Peter's Dome view from Castle St. Angelo Terrace

Rome, the Eternal City, is popular for its breathtaking sights, splendid beauty and some of the most exquisite pieces of architecture ever built by mankind. A trip to Rome is never complete without visiting its historical landmarks, some of which have been made immortal in history books and movies across the globe. The St. Peter's Basilica - part of Vatican City - is definitely one of those. When I returned from my Rome trip and looked at my photos, I noticed that I had lots and lots of photos of the St. Peter's Basilica Dome. So I decided to put together my list of the Top 5 Photo Spots to take a photo of the St. Peter's Basilica Dome.
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20 October, 2013

Vatican and Sistine Chapel early entrance Tour

View from St. Peter's Basilica Dome over the Vatican
Vatican
One of the most evocative and inspiring sights in Rome is without any doubt the Vatican. There are very few people in the world - even when they are not catholic - who are unmoved by the sheer beauty of what they see in the Vatican, especially in the Museum, St. Peter's and the Sistine Chapel. Although I've always wanted to see the Sistine Chapel, I never did during my previous trips as the long waiting lines and the crowds put me off. This time however I found a unique tour, the Vatican Early Entrance Tour from LivItaly Tours. This tour allows you to enter the Museum before it opens to the public, which means you can enjoy an empty Vatican Museum as well as an almost empty Sistine Chapel.
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12 October, 2013

Colosseum Underground and Ancient Rome Tour

View on the Colosseum Rome
Colosseum
The Colosseum - also known as the Flavian Amphitheater - is one of Rome's most recognizable landmarks. No Rome itinerary is complete without visiting this ancient stadium. I took the Semi-Private Colosseum Underground and Ancient Rome Tour with Dark Rome Tours & Walks. This tour includes the Colosseum, Palatine Hill and the Forum Romanum. What makes this tour so unique is that you are allowed to visit places in the Colosseum which are not open to regular visitors like the underground, the third level and the arena. It is the first time in history that tourists on a special guided tour can visit the underground of the Colosseum! It was truly a once in a lifetime experience, can you imagine yourself walking through the underground tunnels where once the wild animals were held and where the gladiators prepared themselves for battle?
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30 September, 2013

Capture the Colour 2013 Competition

Capture the Colour Competition
Capture the Colour Competition

I have been nominated by Shara from SKJ Travel,  Jaklien from Passport and Toothbrush and Katherine from Travel the World to participate in the Capture the Colour 2013 Photoblogging Competition. Thank you very much ladies! The idea of the contest is to select 5 of your favourite travel photos representing the colours yellow, blue, red, green and white. I love taking amateur photos, so I dived into my travel photos and ... here's my entry. Let me know what you think. 
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22 September, 2013

Private Italian Cooking Class in Rome

Kneading the dough in Nonna Lina's Cooking Class
Nonna Lina's Cooking Class
When I hear the word "Italy" I instantly start dreaming about the the delicious mouth watering Italian cuisine; the pasta, the pizza, the seafood, the meat ... and of course the wine. I'm not much of a cook but I always wanted to learn how to prepare homemade pasta. During my last visit to Italy, I got the opportunity to do so ... I went to Nonna Lina's Private Cooking Class in Rome with LivItaly Tours. At 3.30 pm our unique experience started with a pick-up from our hotel ... 
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05 September, 2013

Exploring Santa Cruz Island Galapagos

Santa Cruz Island Galapagos Islands
Santa Cruz Island
Shunned by the Spaniards but loved by pirates, Santa Cruz - after Isabela Island the second largest isle in the Galapagos archipelago - was the first one to receive visitors. This tradition continues even today as Baltra Island, just across Santa Cruz, serves as the main arrival point of visitors coming to the Galapagos Islands. This island was named 'Santa Cruz' meaning 'holy cross' by the Spanish, however the British named it 'Indefatigable' after the ship that had led them to its shores. Upon arrival in Santa Cruz, after a short flight from Quito, I couldn't believe that I finally made it. It took some blinking of eyes and literal pinching to realize but it was true .. I arrived to this unique place, named Galapagos Islands, a paradise on earth. 
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30 August, 2013

The Quintessential Guide to New Delhi

a picture of Holiday Nomad in New Delhi
New Delhi
The world-famous Taj Mahal and the Pink City Jaipur are both part of India's popular tourist route known as the Golden Triangle. Most Golden Triangle tours start in New Delhi one of India's most interesting cities to explore. This city - which is believed to be more than 5000 years old - can however be overwhelming for first time visitors, India's capital is incredibly busy and quite confronting; the people, the traffic, the touts, the noise ...  Once you get over that, you will discover that New Delhi is a very vibrant city combining perfectly the old and the new world. It is home to two forts both steeped in Mughal legend and features landmarks such as Humayun's Tomb, Qutab Minar and the leafy Lodi Gardens. One day is hardly sufficient to see Delhi's highlights but lets give it a try ...
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22 August, 2013

10 Amazing National Parks in the USA

a herd of bison in Yellowstone National Park
Bisons in Yellowstone National Park
The National Parks in the US are the perfect destination for anyone craving adventure, excitement and above all breath-taking sceneries. These places have stunning landscapes and amazing wildlife waiting for you. Each Park is different and has something about it that makes visiting it a unique experience ... it may be the Bison in Yellowstone or the Delicate Arch in Arches National Park ... If you have not been to a National Park then now is the time to go see the wonders they hold. If you have been to some of them, then now is the time to go and explore the others. These 10 Parks are all very popular and for good reason ... it are some of the most amazing National Parks in the USA.
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18 August, 2013

Things to do in and around Dinant

View from Citadel in Dinant Belgium
View from the Citadel
I'm always so in awe by the beautiful places I visit while traveling that I sometimes forget that there are also stunning places in my own country, Belgium. The historic town Dinant, located on the river Meuse in the Walloon region of Belgium, is one of those places. This beautiful historic city is the tourist heart of the Ardennes in Belgium, for good reason! History lovers, culture lovers, adventure seekers, families with children ... everybody loves Dinant. After my previous post about Dinant's fascinating history, I will focus in this post on "things to do in and around Dinant". 
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14 August, 2013

In the Spotlight: Arenal Volcano National Park

View on the Arenal Volcano in Costa Rica
Arenal Volcano
As I make my way through the dense jungle, the diversity in fauna and flora keeps surprising me. The further I go, the louder I hear the sound of splashing water ... at the end of the trail, I see a beautiful waterfall nestled amidst the forest surrounded by a little pool of water. I take a well-deserved rest here on one of the rocks while birds are chirping around me in an incessant cacophony. On the way back, I just cannot take my eyes off the impressive Volcano looming up in the background. I'm in Arenal Volcano National Park in Costa Rica, Pura Vida
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10 August, 2013

Exploring Isabela Island Galapagos

Sea Lions on the dock of Isabela Island Galapagos
Isabela Island Galapagos
After our visit to the beautiful Santa Cruz Island, we took a small boat to our next destination namely the stunning sea-horse shaped Isabela Island formed of 6 volcanoes of which 5 are still active. It was quite a rough but breathtaking ride through turquoise waters. Upon arrival in Isabela we were greeted by sea lions sunning on the dock. Can you imagine anything more unique? This island is the biggest in the Galapagos archipelago and with almost a million years behind it also one of the youngest. Undisturbed by progress, the human population here leads a peaceful co-existence with wildlife like giant tortoises, iguanas, blue footed boobies, sea lions, penguins, sea turtles and with white-tipped reef sharks to name a few. To preserve all this beauty, make sure to visit with a Green Awareness.
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06 August, 2013

The Quintessential Guide to Jaipur

Courtyard of the Amber Fort in Jaipur
Amber Fort 
Jaipur makes up one of the three points on the tourist route called the "Golden Triangle", a justifiably popular circuit that - along with New Delhi (India's capital) and Agra (where the famous Taj Mahal is located) - provides an excellent introduction to India's diversity. Upon arrival in Jaipur, you'll quickly realize one essential thing: there is a great deal about the city that is over the top. This Indian metropolis, the capital of the state of Rajasthan, is jam-packed with brilliant color, extravagant architecture and cacophonous sound. It's a city of palaces, courtyards and Maharaja riches, but it's also a place teeming with dust, dirt and ceaseless activity. If you're looking for tranquility, Jaipur won't be your cup of tea but if you're looking for a vibrant slice of India, you'd be hard-pressed to find a better choice.
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01 August, 2013

Travel with an Increased Green Awareness

Wading through a river during a jungle tour in Thailand
Jungle Tour in Thailand
Many people visualize someone camping in the jungle or wading through a remote river when they hear the terms "Green Travel" or "Green Tourism". However, Green Travel encompasses a wide variety of tourism experiences and is something that can be enjoyed by all. People who enjoy comfort don't have to sacrifice this by staying somewhere without amenities. Green Travel can involve visiting large cities or smaller villages, staying in luxurious hotels or eco-lodges. The most important aspect of Green Tourism is to consider the environment you are visiting and to try to protect and preserve this environment. 
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29 July, 2013

In the Spotlight: Death Valley National Park

Footsteps in the sand of the White Dunes in Death Valley NP
White Dunes in Death Valley National Park
The sun is shining mercilessly on my head, the heath is burning my throat and the extreme drought makes me more thirsty than I've ever been in my life. For as far as I can see, I see sand ... sand and more sand ... my eyes catch a glimpse of colorful canyons and mountains far in the distance or is this a Fata Morgana? When I turn around, I see my footsteps in the otherwise untouched white sand dunes, a feeling of complete solitude comes over me, yet I have never felt so peaceful in my life ... Death Valley National Park makes for sure a big impression on me.
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26 July, 2013

Visit Romania, Dracula's Country

a photo from Bran Castle in Romania
Bran Castle - photo by Mihaela Schwartz
By Mihaela Schwartz from TheFreeTravelGuide.com
The myth of Dracula is one of the main reasons that attract tourists from all over the world to this corner of Eastern Europe. Travelers come to Romania and tour the Transylvanian towns and villages, hoping to discover at least some of the vampire's traces. However, Romania is much more than Dracula and the castles in which the legendary character has supposedly lived. Inspired by a former Walachian ruler (Vlad the Impaler), Dracula actually owes his fame to the Irish writer Bram Stoker and his best selling novel focusing on a fictional hero bearing this name.
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18 July, 2013

The Quintessential Guide to Marrakech

Marrakech City
Marrakech
Marrakech - the gateway to the snow-capped Atlas Mountains - is a trickster: at times the city is perplexing and exasperating, then just around the corner it manages to thrill and amaze. The fabled Red City has blended Arabic, Berber, French and Moorish influences into a confounding exotic mélange but somehow it all works. Although Marrakech has long been a magnet for adventurous travelers, the city has never been better equipped to ensure a marvelous stay, provided you're prepared for all your senses going into overdrive. Where else could a single day encompass breakfast on the roof terrace of your sumptuous riad, shopping in the souks, a tour of a fairytale palace, a candle-lit tagine dinner in the Kasbah and the circus of the mind-boggling Djemaa el Fna square? So what are you waiting for ... grab your passport ... Marrakech awaits! 
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13 July, 2013

The Taj Mahal, a true masterpiece

The Taj Mahal Agra
Taj Mahal, Agra
Next week, I'm going on another business trip to India. Although I will have no time whatsoever during this trip to visit anything, it does remind me of the fact that I have been able to visit the world-famous Taj Mahal already twice. Unfortunately up till now I never had the time to write about it. Both visits I stared for hours at this awe-inspiring wonder. It is impossible to describe the beauty of this famous marble mausoleum, you have to see it for yourself and I'm sure that you - just like I do - will cherish the memories for ever.   
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28 June, 2013

Hiking from Moray to the Salt Pans in Maras

Moray Maras Hike Landscape, Peru
Moray Maras Hike landscape
After our hikes in Ollantaytambo and Pisac, the entrance to the Sacred Valley, I planned another hike as preparation for the Inca Trail the next day. This scenic day hike took us from the colonial village Maras to Moray where we visited the mysterious circular terraces of the ancient Incas, then back to Maras from where we continued hiking to the famous Salt Mines and then all the way down to the Urubamba river. Moray is located on a plateau at an altitude of 3500 meters, so this turned out to be a great acclimatization hike through stunning landscapes. 
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21 June, 2013

Inca Trail Preparation and Packing List

Inca Trail to Machu Picchu Peru
Inca Trail to Machu Picchu
Many people dream of hiking the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu, arriving the last day before sunrise at Inti Punku the Sun Gate and seeing the mysterious ruins of the "lost city" Machu Picchu appear beneath them. It has been on my bucket list as well for ages ... till I finally decided to just go for it. I started planning my trip in January 2013 and hiked the Inca Trail in May 2013. It was the trip of a lifetime. I hope my tips and info will help you to have your own amazing Inca Trail experience.
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14 June, 2013

Inca Trail Day 4 - Arrival at Machu Picchu

Holiday Nomad in Machu Picchu Inca Trail
Holiday Nomad in Machu Picchu
It's only 3 am but I'm wide awake and filled with anticipation cause today is the day I have been looking forward to for so long ... after a relaxing start on Day 1, a difficult Day 2 and a long Day 3 of the Inca Trail ... I will finally get to see Machu Picchu. We have a quick breakfast and arrive at the last check point just before 4 am. Although the check point only opens at 5.30 am, there are already 2 groups waiting when we arrive. Everybody - including myself - wants to be the first to hike the last 4 km to Inti Punku, the Sun Gate. I'm getting really nervous now, will Machu Picchu live up to my expectations? 
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04 June, 2013

Inca Trail Day 3 - The Longest Day

Lama in Phuyupatamarka, the city in the clouds
I'm pretty sure that tents will never become my favorite travel accommodation. For the second night now, I'm having difficulties falling asleep. Every now and then I nod off for a little while but most of the time I'm awake. Even with the thermal sleeping bag, it's very cold so I put on some extra layers. Who's idea was it again to start the Inca Trail, knowing that the second camp site will be at an altitude of 3600 meters? Yeah, I have to blame myself for this :) The morning ritual on Day 3 is identical to the one on Day 2 of the Inca Trail except that we are ready this time at 6 am.
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25 May, 2013

Inca Trail Day 2 - Dead Woman's Pass

Dead Woman's Pass Ascent Inca Trail
Dead Woman's Pass Ascent
I didn't sleep very well, it wasn't cold with the thermal sleeping bag and liner but the mattress was quite hard and of course I'm just not used sleeping in a tent. Can you believe this is the first time ever I slept in a tent? Yeah there was no other option ... there are no nice Spa resorts on the Inca Trail, not even a basic hostel :) Oh well this is all part of the adventure and I still prefer this tent above the refuge at Mount Toubkal Base Camp where I had to share my room with 25 other people. I'm finally about to fall a sleep when I hear Paul, our guide, shout "Good morning", "Good morning, wake up. We have a big day ahead of us". Indeed, today we will attempt to cross Dead Woman's Pass at an altitude of 4200 meters. The 1st day of the Inca Trail turned out to be surprisingly easy for me, I wonder how today will work out ...
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17 May, 2013

Inca Trail Day 1 - Getting Started

Sexy Llamas and Caballero on the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu
Sexy Llamas and Caballero on the Inca Trail
The buzzing sound of my alarm clock wakes me up at 5:30 am, still half a sleep and a bit disoriented I put the alarm off, turn around and I'm about to fall a sleep again when it finally hits me ... today is THE DAY, the day I have been looking forward to for so long. Today, 6th of May 2013, I will start hiking the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu. During this 4-day hike, I will follow this ancient trail through the Andes and hopefully on the 4th day before sunrise I will arrive at Inti Punku, the Sun Gate to see the wonder of Machu Picchu appear below me. All of the sudden filled with excitement, I jump out of my bed and into the shower. I already packed my duffel back last night, so after a quick breakfast I am ready to go ... 
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02 May, 2013

Inca Pisac the entrance to the Sacred Valley

Intihuatana Ruins - Inca Pisac
The Sacred Valley of the Incas comprises the valleys connected by the Urubamba river between Pisac and Ollantaytambo. Pisac is the gateway to the Sacred Valley and located in the Yucay Valley on the shores of the river, its elevation is 2950 meters. This Andean village is famous for its Artisan Market on Sundays, Tuesdays and Thursdays but even more so for its beautiful Inca ruins - Inca Pisac - built high up in the mountains at an elevation of 3300 meters. We visited Pisac on a Tuesday, the perfect day to combine a visit to the ruins with strolling around the market. 
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25 April, 2013

Atlas Mountains Imnane Valley Trekking

Tizi n'Aguersioual Atlas Mountains
Tizi n'Aguersioual
I already wrote some posts about our Atlas Trekking in Morocco last month but somehow I missed to describe our first day there, so here it goes. On our first day in the Atlas Mountains in Morocco, we woke up around 8 am and about an hour later we were having a wonderful breakfast on the rooftop terrace of the Imlil lodge in Tamatert. It was a beautiful sunny day and the views from the terrace were just stunning. After a delicious and very relaxing breakfast, we met our guide Ibrahim. He told us that we were going to do an acclimatization hike in the beautiful Imnane Valley before starting the harder work the next day when we would attempt the 2-day climb of Mount Toubkal
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18 April, 2013

The Fascinating History of Dinant

Dinant Belgium
Dinant
While visiting Dinant last weekend, I was so fascinated by the history of this beautiful city that I decided to write a post about it. Dinant, a small historic town build along impressive cliffs on the banks of the River Meuse, is located in the Walloon part of Belgium about an hour drive from Brussels. The name Dinant comes from the Celtic word Divo-Nanto meaning the Sacred Valley. Due to its strategic location on the Meuse, Dinant has seen many battles over the years ... from the invasion of the Vikings end 9th century till the bombardments during the second World War.
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12 April, 2013

Atlas Trekking Preparation and Packing List

Berber Village in the Atlas Mountains
Berber Village
The Atlas Mountains are a mountain range of about 2500 km stretching through Morocco, Algeria and Tunisia. The Atlas Mountains in Morocco and particularly the High Atlas is the most popular part and a true hiking paradise. Many visitors come here each year to hike through the beautiful valleys, through the Berber Villages or to climb Mount Jbel Toubkal, with an elevation of 4167 meters the highest peak of North Africa. The Atlas Mountains are easy reachable from Marrakech. It is about one hour drive from Marrakech to get to Imlil, most Trekking Companies will include in their price the pick-up from Marrakech. Arranging an independent trek is quite easy, however to make the most out of your trip it is important to go well prepared.
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08 April, 2013

New Zealand's Astounding North Island Photo Journey

the famous Hole in the Rock
By Kristin Addis from BeMyTravelMuse:
I had the good fortune to meet up with my mother halfway around the world in New Zealand for a holiday over Easter. We took the first half of our journey through the amazingly beautiful North Island, touring Auckland, the Bay of Islands, and the beautiful drive in-between. The following is my photo journey of the little slice of the North Island that I was able to visit:
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04 April, 2013

Berber Villages around Imlil in Morocco

Atlas trekking through Berber villages
Atlas Trekking Berber villages
After our 2 day trekking climbing Mount Toubkal, we only had one day left in the Atlas Mountains in Morocco. On our last day, our guide Ibrahim took us on a walk through Imlil Valley, passing several Berber villages. There are lots of Berber villages in the Atlas Mountains. The Berbers, also called Imazighen or Amazigh meaning free people, are the original inhabitants of Morocco and still have their own language and culture. Ibrahim explained us that there are 3 different Berber dialects in Morocco being Tamazight in the Atlas Mountains, Tarafit in North Morocco and Tashelhit in the Agadir area. Most of the Berbers in the Atlas Mountains are farmers now.
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29 March, 2013

Climbing Mount Jbel Toubkal in Morocco

Climbing Mt Toubkal
Climbing Mount Toubkal
I decided that it would be a good idea to start my Mountain Climbing training in the Atlas Mountains in Morocco and climb Mount Toubkal also called Jbel Toubkal - with its 4167 meters - the highest mountain of North Africa. I read a lot of information about the climb and was reassured by the fact that it did not seem to be a very technical nor difficult climb. So on 22nd of March at 8 am, a beautiful sunny day - I was ready to go. Together with a guide, a cook and a mule to carry the food and baggage, we started our hike from the Imlil Lodge located in Tamatert on the outskirts of Imlil.
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24 March, 2013

Why am I in the Atlas Mountains in Morocco

Holiday Nomad during Atlas Trekking
Atlas Trekking
When I looked forward to 2013 earlier this year, I wasn't planning to return to Morocco this year. So what changed? In May I will hike the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu, this has been the number 1 on my bucket list for ages ... arriving at the Sun Gate the last day of the Inca Trail, watch the sun rise and slowly see the miracle of Machu Picchu appear below me ... No need to tell you how excited I was once I planned and arranged my trip. However the closer I get to this trip, the more nervous I'm getting ... will I physically be able to complete the Inca Trail? Sure I planned to prepare for the Inca Trail by going hiking a lot more, working on my condition, maybe even start running a bit ... however work and daily life got in the way of my training plans.
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19 March, 2013

Sentosa Island Singapore Photo Journey

Bridge to Southernmost Point of Asia Sentosa
Bridge to Southernmost Point of Asia
One of my favorite things to do in Singapore is taking a day trip to Sentosa Island. Sentosa - translating as "Piece and Tranquility" - is a Resort Island featuring Universal Studios Singapore, Marine Life Park, Dolphin Lagoon, beaches and many other exciting attractions. Although it is not always easy to find "Piece and Tranquility" on Sentosa due to its popularity, it is definitely worth a visit. There are 3 beautiful beaches; Palawan, Siloso and Tanjong beach. A walking bridge connects Palawan Beach with the Southernmost Point of Continental Asia. There is so much to see and do, I definitely had an amazing day on Sentosa.
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16 March, 2013

The North Island, Taupo to Wellington

Marlborough Sounds Cook Strait
Marlborough Sounds
From Taupo to Wellington, a post - based upon his travel diary - by Roger Renders:
After our trip from Auckland to Pahia, we returned to Auckland to pick up our rental car and continued to explore the North Island of New Zealand. I got quickly used to driving on the left side of the road although I often found myself on the wrong side of the car to get in. We arrived in Taupo on 2nd of March 2002 together with the arrival of the Iron Man. We stayed in a hostel about 200 meters from Lake Taupo, a huge lake in a caldera created by a massive volcanic eruption more than 25.000 years ago. From the rooftop bar we had a stunning view on Mount Tongariro behind the lake. 
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11 March, 2013

Top 6 Animal Encounters in Uganda

Gorilla
Gorilla Uganda
By Shara Johnson from SKJtravel:
In 2012 I went to Uganda to volunteer in the Uganda Wildlife Education Center for a month. The UWEC takes in rescued wildlife from throughout the country but has no rehabilitation facilities to release them back into the wild after treatment, so typically the majority stays at the center in semi-natural habitat enclosures where the public can see them. After my time there, I traveled around the country to various national parks to see the amazing diversity of wildlife the country protects within its borders. Uganda is often referred to as "The Pearl of Africa" and it’s not difficult to understand why, with its lush jungle environment and copious wildlife, Lake Victoria and the headwaters of the Nile River. As wildlife viewing was for me (and for most tourists) the chief attraction in Uganda, here are a few of my favorite and most memorable wildlife encounters
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07 March, 2013

Top 5 things to do on the Big Island Hawaii

Ka Lae Big Island Hawaii
Ka Lae
Big Island, Hawaii is - as the name suggests - the biggest Hawaiian Island and is probably as well the most diverse one. You will find here rain forests, mountains, beaches, volcanos including Kilauea one of the world's most active volcanos, desserts and much more. Lots of people stay around the Kailua Kona area on the beaches when visiting Big Island which is definitely worth it but they miss out a lot, there is so much more to see ... After my top 5 things to do in Kauai and my top 5 things to do in Maui posts, here is my list of top 5 things to do on the Big Island.
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28 February, 2013

Discovering Macedonia

The Stone Bridge Skopje
The Stone Bridge
By Len Rutledge:
I am gazing at a huge statue of a warrior on a horse in a fountain in the middle of a square. Behind, a street leads to the Stone Bridge which was built in the 6th century by the Byzantine emperor Justinian. Past the Stone Bridge I can see a stone castle which locals tell me is built on an ancient fortress-like structure ... built long before the Roman civilisation came into being. This is Skopje, capital of the Republic of Macedonia. It has been ruled by Romans, Ottomans and the Yugoslav conglomerate before Macedonia's independence and has been twice rebuilt. Once in the 17th century when destroyed by and Austrian general and again after a devastating earthquake in 1963. It is a wonder that anything old remains at all. 
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22 February, 2013

Midwest National Parks Road Trip

Canyonlands NP
Canyonlands NP Moab
I just love Road Tripping in the USA. It is so easy to drive around and there is so much to see, especially if you schedule in a few National Parks. During our incredible Go West Road Trip, we were very impressed with the National Parks in the USA. All parks are so beautiful, grand and diverse. We promised ourselves that we would return one day to visit more of these stunning National Parks. In June 2011 we finally made it back and did our fabulous Midwest Road Trip. Our Go West Road Trip included San Francisco, Yosemite NP, Sequoia NP, Kings Canyon NP, Death Valley NP, Las Vegas, Zion NP, Lake Powell NP, Grand Canyon NP, Lake Havasu and Los Angeles. This time we wanted to see different National Parks and included in our Midwest Road Trip Yellowstone National Park, Salt Lake City, Arches National Park, Canyonlands National Park and Rocky Mountains NP.
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15 February, 2013

Arriving at Inti Punku the Sun Gate

Machu Picchu TravelFashionGirl
Machu Picchu Photo from TravelFashionGirl
As I mentioned in one of my previous posts - looking forward to 2013 - in a couple months time I will finally be able to scratch out the number one on my bucket list ... the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu. I'm so excited about this and I cannot wait till it's May. For so many years, I have been wondering how I would feel the last day of the Inca Trail ... arriving before sunrise exhausted but full of anticipation at Inti Punku - the Sun Gate - watching the sun come up and slowly see the wonder of Machu Picchu appear beneath me ... Because I will have to wait a couple more months before I have the answer to this question, I have asked a few fellow Travel Bloggers how they felt when they arrived at Inti Punka - the Sun Gate - after having hiked the Inca Trail.
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09 February, 2013

Top 5 things to do in Singapore

Marina Bay Sands Hotel Singapore
Marina Bay Sands Hotel Singapore
I just returned from another Singapore trip and like many people I always enjoy the nice weather, the relaxing atmosphere, shopping, a visit to China Town ... I unfortunately did not have much time this trip to do any sightseeing but I was lucky enough on my previous trips to have some time left to explore Singapore a bit further. Here is my list of top 5 things to do in Singapore when you have a bit more time. 
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02 February, 2013

Rocky Mountain NP Photo Journey

Rocky Mountain NP - 1
Rocky Mountain National Park
After visiting the magnificent and diverse Yellowstone National Park followed by the Great Salt Lake and the incredible beautiful Canyonlands and Arches NP in Utah, we ended our June 2011 Midwest Road Trip with a visit to Rocky Mountain NP. Again we were stunned by the beauty, grandeur and diversity of the National Parks in the US. It is hard to describe this unique experience in words, therefore also here I hope my photos will give you a better idea and show you why also Rocky Mountain NP is a "must visit".  
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26 January, 2013

Arches and Canyonlands NP Photo Journey

North Window Arch
North Window Arch
During our Midwest Road Trip from Yellowstone National Park to Rocky Mountain National Park, we also stayed a couple days in Moab. While in Moab, we visited two incredible beautiful National Parks, Arches National Park with its more than 2000 sandstone Arches and Canyonlands National Park. I hope my Photo Jouney through these parks give you some idea of the beauty of this place.
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20 January, 2013

Experience Grand Canyon Rafting

Grand Canyon Greenpan
Grand Canyon Greenpan
There are few places in the United States filled with more beauty than the Grand Canyon. When you travel to Las Vegas, Nevada and you go to see the Grand Canyon, you will first realize just how massive and grand it is! This amazing winding rock formation with a river nestled neatly in the bottom can be experienced either from above, by hiking down and up or by riding the rapids. We want to tell you why you should choose to raft your way through the crazy winding river.
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