Dublin, Ireland’s Fair City

Dublin, Ireland’s Fair City

Dublin is one of the most exhilarating tourist destinations in the world. But it offers a lot more than just the extreme. Below are some of the most interesting reasons to check out Dublin. And don’t forget to get the Dublin Travel Guide and Offline City Map & Metro when you do.

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The Forty Foot

The Forty Foot is one of Dublin’s traditional bathing pools is also the city’s most iconic attraction. It is a rocky plateau projecting into the Irish Sea. The clean deep waters of this swimming hole have been providing thrill and enjoyment to locals and tourists for more than 250 years. Just remember that it is not for everybody. The waters are frigid and there are no lifeguards. Jumping from the rocks is discouraged by not prohibited.

Mass-participation Events

Dublin holds several mass-participation events each year. The most popular of these events are the Great Dublin Bike Ride held in September and the Dublin Marathon held in October. Several thousands of people participate in each of these two events each year. They provide an opportunity for adventurers and fitness enthusiasts to meet and mingle with other likeminded people.

The ADIFF

The 10-day Audi Dublin International Film Festival 10-day is the event film buffs and movie nerds from all over the country are looking forward to the most. Numerous premiers, previews, and Q&A sessions happen in each of the 10 days. Prominent local and international celebrities grace the event. The highlight happens in the last few days when the audience is given the chance to see upcoming films several months before their scheduled released dates.

St Patrick’s Festival

Dublin is the true home of St Patrick’s Day. It is a national celebration of identity, arts, and culture during which the best of the best of local and international talents are honored with a slew of festivities. There is always something to look forward to when it comes to Dublin’s celebration of St Patrick’s Day. The city ups the ante each year so even regular visitors don’t know what to expect.

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Brussels, the Center of European Culture and Institutions

Brussels, the Center of European Culture and Institutions

Brussels is one of the finest hidden gems in the European Union. It may not be as popular a destination as the more renowned cities in the continent but it is still worth checking out. Here are the reasons why. Download and install the Brussels Travel Guide and Offline City Map before your visit.

The Markets

Your experience of visiting this busy city won’t be complete if you don’t check out the markets. Anderlecht district’s Clemenceau market is the noisiest and most hectic food market in Brussels where you can get fresh fruits and vegetables, different kinds of cheeses, olives, and other food items. The Place du Jeu de Balle flea market is a tourist favorite. In it you’ll find all sorts of antique items and various kinds of art pieces, books, jewelry, interior design items, and more.

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The Parks

Brussels has a plethora of interesting and varied parks. The Jean-Felix Hap’s garden is perfect for those who just want to have some peace and quiet. It is the ideal spot for those who just want to be alone. Parc du Cinquantenaire is a bigger and more crowded park. It has several playgrounds for kids and sporting squares where teens and adults can play sports such as badminton. You can even find a triumphal arch, a car museum, an art, museum, and a history museum in the center of the park. If you just want to enjoy nature then you should check out the Bois de la Cambre. It is a massive park with a lovely lake that has an island at the center.

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The Cafés

Brussels is home to numerous great cafés. Ixelles district’s Café Belga is famous for its live music. When the weather is good, the café doors and windows open to give customers an unobstructed view of the outside. Its bestsellers are Belgian beer and peppermint tea. Borgval Street’s Café Central is the most sought-after establishment during weekends when DJs and other live acts perform for the customers. Its bestsellers are its fries and waffles.

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Lyon, the Gastronomic Capital of France

Lyon, the Gastronomic Capital of France

Lyon is one of the emerging destinations in France. It offers numerous attractions several times more affordable than those in Paris. Here are some of the reasons why you should go to Lyon instead of the more popular French cities. Download the Lyon Travel Guide and Offline City Map to help you prepare for your visit.

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No Hassle

Lyon is not a busy city and not many tourists visit it either. Visiting it will make you feel as if everything the city has to offer is exclusively for you. There are no waiting lines on attractions, getting a cab is fast, there is no traffic, etc. You can also just walk from one part of the city to another if you want to soak in the view and feel of locale. If you want a hassle-free vacation in France, this city is exactly what you are looking for.

Affordable

The cost of living in Lyon is nearly 40% cheaper compared to the cost of living in Paris. Everything in Lyon is cheaper than in most French cities, especially the rent. If you want a long vacation in France without burning all your savings then this is the place to go.

Delicious

Lyon is the gastronomical capital of France for a reason. It offers the finest and most varied cuisine in the country. If you want to taste as many authentic French dishes and food items as possible, this is the place to be. The city is located in an area where the finest ingredients in the region pass through. The city also lies between two of the largest wine producing regions in France. To top it all off, there are 17 restaurants in Lyon that hold Michelin stars.

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Historic

Lyon’s Old City is one of the largest intact Renaissance districts in Europe while Vieux Lyon (Old Lyon) is the second largest intact Renaissance neighborhood in Europe. Old Lyon is also a UNESCO World Heritage site. Other notable Gothic and Renaissance buildings and structures can be found all around the city.

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Lima, the Peruvian Capital

Lima, the Peruvian Capital

Lima is renowned the world over for its authentic Peruvian cuisine. Don’t be fooled though. There is a lot more to Lima than just exquisite food. Here are some of the other things it offers. And download the Lima Travel Guide and Offline City Street Map before you visit.

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Bohemian Barranco Nightlife

Barranco, Lima’s beautiful bohemian district, seems serene and laid back during the day but it does full 360-degree turn come nightfall. Nightclubs and disco bars come to life to offer party lovers and cocktail lovers a wild ride. The most famous establishment is the Ayahuasca Bar, a refurbished mansion converted into a stunning nightlife paradise. It is so in demand that reservation is required so make sure you make your reservation on your very first day on the city.

Novice Surfing

Lima’s Pacific Coast is the perfect place to get introduced to surfing. The waves are small enough to not overwhelm novices while also being just big enough to pose a challenge. The unforgettable view of Lima’s skyline will inspire surfers to not give up and keep going until they’ve learned enough. Beaches in the Chorrillos and Punta Hermosa districts are most recommended.

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Shopping

Tourists need items to help them acclimate to the destination and blend in with the locals. They also need items they can take home as souvenirs. Lima has numerous stores that cater to any budget. The Alpaca is the perfect starting point where you can buy well-made scarves, shawls, and sweaters at a really cheap price. The Inka Market in Miraflores is perfect for those with haggling skills. Larcomar’s Sol Alpaca and Kuna offer fancy boutiques that sell luxurious items.

 

  Swimming with Sea Lions

Lima’s Palomino Islands are also known as the Little Galapagos of Lima. The island’s natural ecosystem is preserved by forbidding humans from setting foot in the island. Tourists, however, can hire a boat to take them near the shores of the islands where they can swim in wet suits with friendly sea lions. The waters are ice-cold but the heartwarming experience is well worth it.

 

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Istanbul, Where Traditional Architecture and Modern Nightlife Collide

Istanbul, Where Traditional Architecture and Modern Nightlife Collide

Istanbul is the cultural hub of Turkey’s extremely diverse heritage. Below are some of the reasons that make visiting Istanbul such a refreshing experience. And as always, make sure you have our Istanbul Travel Guide and Offline City Street Map downloaded and installed to help you make your way through the amazing city.

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Turkish Baths

Hamams (bathhouses) play an important role in Turkey’s history. Hamans were first built centuries ago by the Ottoman Empire to serve as both places of worship and communal centers. Today, they are the country’s leading therapeutic establishments. There are more than 200 hamans in turkey and some of the best ones are found in Istanbul. Go check them out and you’ll likely to never think of bathhouses the same way again.

Turkish Food

The local food is something you should not miss when visiting Istanbul. The city offers the widest variety of kebab you’ve ever seen and the unique sweetness of Turkish delights will definitely brighten your day. Visit one of numerous docked boat shops buy some fresh Balik Ekmek, a kind of fish sandwich. Match it off with some warm Simit bread and a cold Ayran yogurt drink and your meal is complete.

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Local Nightlife

More than 80% of Turks avoid common vices like smoking and drinking but they really love to party. In fact, there doesn’t seem to be enough taverns and nightclubs to accommodate them all. Everyone, even the government, supports the city’s lively nightlife. It even holds an event called Club To Club Istanbul several times each year. During the event, participants visit a series of participating nightclubs all throughout the night. It’s the dream even for people who love club-hopping.

 

Top 100 DJ World Tour

The arena-scale dance music event DJ Mag Top 100 DJs World Tour makes regular stops at Istanbul. It brings the most recognizable DJs in the world right at the city center. Dimitri Vegas & Like Mike, and Fedde Le Grand are just some of the big names that have performed in Istanbul nightclubs at least once.

 

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Sicily, the Island at the Heart of the Mediterranean

Sicily, the Island at the Heart of the Mediterranean

Sicily, the largest of Italy’s islands, is rich in natural wonders and cultural treasures. It has great weather and great food. Here are the primary reasons why you should make Sicily your next target destination. And as always, prepare by downloading the Sicily Travel Guide with Offline City Street Map.

Mediterranean Beaches

The shores of Sicily house some of the most beautiful beaches in the world, supplemented by the wonderful weather. Anytime from May to October is a prime time to visit any of Sicily’s 280 beaches. The Western Coast is the favorite of tourists. Villas just 5 minutes away from the shore can be rented at quite an affordable price.

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Incredible History

There are several UNESCO World Heritage Sites in and near Sicily, and each one features vivid architecture from various time periods. The most prominent of these sites are as follows:

·         Ragusa – an ancient city located at the southern tip of Sicily, clinging to a steep hillside. It offers incredible views of the island and features romantic winding streets, cobbled walk ways, historic churches, and medieval buildings.

·         Syracuse – a well-preserved historic site that is home to a weird mix of old medieval houses and new modern ones. It was once a major city of the Greek empire which is still evident in the numerous ancient Greek ruins scattered all around the city.

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Food and Wine

Sicily is a paradise when it comes to exquisite food and authentic wine. All the ingredients come from local farms and wineries which guarantees their freshness. Wherever you eat on the island, the food and wine is guaranteed to be amazing. The island and its regions have their own local specialty dishes the most popular of which is Cannoli (Italian for ‘little tube’). Cannoli is the most coveted dessert in Sicily and one of the most popular in Italy. Its main ingredient is the delectable sugary vanilla ricotta cheese. Sicily Cannoli is special since it is guaranteed to have the magic ingredient Succade (candid citrus fruit peel).

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Salvador, Bahia, Brazil’s City of Happiness

Salvador, Bahia, Brazil’s City of Happiness

Salvador, Bahia is quickly establishing itself as an emerging tourist destination in Brazil. Here are the reasons why you should check out this little gem in Northeastern Brazil. And be sure to take the Salvador Bahia Travel Guide and Offline City Map with you.

Afro-Brazilian Music and Culture

More than 3 quarters of Salvador’s population are of African descent and it shows in the city’s rich African culture, energetic celebrations, and plain but undeniably beautiful architecture. Salvador’s Carnaval (Carnival of Salvador), a week-long event, is your best bet in immersing yourself in Afro-Brazilian music. The event involves seven days and nights of Afrocentric celebrations and street parties. You can sing and dance throughout the night.

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 Afro-Brazilian History

Salvador is an outstanding historic center when it comes to learning about the country’s African and Islamic heritage. The city has its own trinity of learning centers namely; the Afro-Brazilian Museum, the Salvador Mosque, and the Center of African-Oriental Studies (CEAO). All three are accessible to the public and contain detailed accounts of the country’s African heritage especially the 19th century slave revolts that engulfed Bahia. The city is also home to several gold-laden churches built by African slaves in the 17th and 18th century.

Beaches and Tourist Attractions

The Pelourinho historic center is the most popular tourist attraction in Salvador. It houses the city’s famous Elevador Lacerda (Elevator to Upper Town) as well as a plethora of shops and restaurants. Pelourinho is also known as the setting of Michael Jackson’s ‘They Don’t Care About Us’ music video epic. Salvador also has a majestic coastline that houses several amazing beaches the most popular of which is the Praia do Farol da Barra. It is said to be the perfect beach for couples thanks to the romantic mood created by its famous lighthouse. Any of the various restaurants near the lighthouse can be the perfect venue for an unforgettable date.

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Hair and Fashion

Salvador’s Afro-Brazilians have taken celebrating their natural hair and blackness as their primary means of denouncing Brazil’s long history of anti-black racism. All Afro-Brazilians in the city prefer keeping their hair natural and wearing African fashion.

 

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Visit Buenos Aires, the Capital City of Argentina

Visit Buenos Aires, the Capital City of Argentina

Buenos Aires, Argentina’s most populous city, combines faded European grandeur with Latin passion. Here are the 4 most compelling reasons to visit Buenos Aires. For the best experience, make sure you download the Buenos Aires Travel Guide and Offline City Maps before you arrive.

Argentina’s Political Hub, the Plaza de Mayo

Plaza de Mayo, since its foundation in 1580, has played and continuous to play an important part in Argentina’s political landscape. This political square houses Argentina’s the pink-ochre Casa Rosada, the country’s presidential palace. Tourists can participate in guided tours during summer in which uniformed grenadier guards lead you through the palace’s majestic chambers and palm-shaded patios. The square houses several other important historical buildings most notable of which are the Banco de la Nación (the National Bank of Argentina) and the restored Cabildo (a colonial-era town hall).

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Home of the Boca Juniors, the La Bombonera

The La Bombonera Stadium is the home of the country’s leading summer team the Boca Juniors. It is where the career of the legendary player Diego Maradona was launched, an inspiring success story that stirs the hearts of sports fans all over the country even today. The stadium also houses the Museo de la Pasión Boquense. It is a small museum open only on no-game days where the jerseys, trophies, and balls that helped build the Boca story are in full display.

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The Marriage of City and Country, the Feria de Mataderos

The Mataderos Fair is one of the most popular festivals in Argentina. It is an event in which Argentinean culture, traditions, and history are in full display. Countless grills line up on the streets and field cooks prepare and serve steaming plates of traditional Argentinean dishes. While enjoying the luscious food, participants can watch horsemen showcase remarkable feats of feats of bravura horsemanship.

Window to the Past, El Zanjón

El Zanjon in San Telmo is a townhouse built in the 1830s. Beneath it is a mesmerizing labyrinth of tunnels, dwellings, cisterns, creeks, and courtyards built more than 400 years ago. Exploring them will make you feel like you’ve gone back in time.

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Santiago, de Chile, One of the Cleanest and Safest in South America

Santiago, de Chile, One of the Cleanest and Safest in South America

Santiago, de Chile is located between the Andes and the Pacific which makes it a paradise for those who love outdoor activities such as trekking, climbing, skiing, and sunbathing. Even those who don’t like exerting themselves can still have a blast by participating in wine tasting or just strolling around appreciating art or even just idling in one of the cafes. Here are a few particular reasons to come to Santiago, de Chile. Know more through the Santiago de Chile Travel Guide and Offline Map.

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Cultural Centers

Wandering the streets of Santiago is often enough to satisfy your hunger for good art. But even if you prefer not to stay exposed to the heat of the sun while appreciating art, you can still get your fill of good art through the numerous cultural centers scattered around the city. The most popular cultural center in the city is the one located underneath the Palacio de La Moneda where you can view a compact exhibit on the art and music of Violeta Parra, one of the country’s most beloved folk singers and artists. Other notable cultural centers include the ones at the Estacion Mapocho and Matucana 100.

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Parque Quinta Normal

The Quinta Normal Park is an urban park located at the Quinta district of Santiago. It offers luscious maze of greenery and over half a dozen museums, most notable of which are the Museo de la Memoria and the kid-friendly Museo de Historia National. It is the best place in the city to take an early morning jog or an afternoon stroll. You can also go on a relaxing paddle boat ride.

Brasil and Yungay

Near the city of Santiago are the neighboring barrios of Brasil and Yungay. Most of Santiago has already been modernized so if you want to have a look of what a traditional Chilean village looks like, the best way to do so is to take a short ride to the barrios of Brasil or Yungay. These two barrios are home to a plethora of imaginative graffiti murals and artistic benches.

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Quito, the Best-preserved Historic Center in Latin America

Quito, the Best-preserved Historic Center in Latin America

Quito, the capital of Ecuador, is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. It was founded in the 16th century on the ruins of an Inca City. It is the least altered historic center in Latin America. Here are some of the best reasons why you need to visit Quito. For more in-depth knowledge of what the city has to offer, download the Quito Travel Guide and Offline City Street Map.

Iglesia de la Compañía de Jesús

The Iglesia de la Compañía de Jesús is the most astonishing structure in Quito’s Old Town. Its ornate appearance stands out despite the baroque appearance of everything that surrounds it. This marvelous church exhibits perfect symmetry, from the tip of its cross down the famous trompe l’oeil staircase at its rear. Its walls are colored bright red to serve as reminders of the blood Christ has spilled for our salvation. The church offers free guided tours throughout the day. You are even given the option of picking an English or a Spanish guide.

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Museo Nacional

The circular, glass-plated, landmark building of Casa de la Cultura Ecuatoriana houses Ecuador’s National Museum where one of the country’s largest collections of Ecuadorian art is on display. Museo Nacional hosts several exhibits showcasing pre-Hispanic and colonial religious artwork. Over 1000 ceramic pieces dating from 12,000 BC to AD 1534 are displayed at the museum’s Sala de Arqueología (Archeology Room). The centerpiece of its Sala de Oro is an astonishing radiating, golden sun mask. And its Sala de Arte Colonial (Colonial Art Room) presents the best works from the Quito School.

The TelefériQo

The TelefériQo, Quito’s skyrail, is one of the most popular attractions in the entire city. This sky tram offers an unforgettable view of Quito’s marvelous mountainous landscape. The 10-minute ride spans 2.5 kilometers, from up the Volcán Pichincha flanks up to the top of the Cruz Loma. After reaching the summit of Cruz Loma, you can then go on a 4,100 meter hike to the top of the Rucu Pichincha. The hike usually takes three hours but the scenery at the summit is well worth the effort.

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Bogotá, the Next Buenos Aires

Bogotá, the Next Buenos Aires

Bogotá is the ‘Next Big Thing’ when it comes to tourist destinations in Colombia. In fact, a lot of people are already calling it the next Buenos Aires. Here are three powerful reasons why you should consider Bogotá as your next destination. And to make sure you make the most out of your vacation, download the Bogotá Travel Guide with Offline City Street Map.

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Lots of Rich People

Having plenty of rich people in the locality has certain advantages for tourists. For one, more high-end activities become available, at a cost significantly lower compared to home. There are also more modern establishments such as huge shopping malls. You also get to enjoy the availability of current gen gadgets on stores as well as the services of modern innovations such as Wi-Fi.

Unpopular to Tourists

The Colombian national brand has a bad reputation internationally mainly due to the country’s image of having a huge drug cartel problem. And as Columbia’s capital, Bogotá is often viewed by tourists as the most dangerous. The truth is, Bogotá has turned things around in the past several years. It is now a lot safer compared to the other major cities in the country. Its lack of popularity is a huge advantage for the few tourists who visit it. They get to enjoy low prices and don’t have to line up to get the best amenities. And since they don’t get many tourists, the establishments you visit will treat you like kings.

Complex and Exciting

Bogotá is a complicated and unpredictable city. It is a place where the old and the new mix together. Its colonial core, Candelaria, is its most famous area. Candelaria houses the city’s largest museums and oldest and largest churches as well as its largest restaurants and tourist shops. Candelaria has enough attractions to keep you entertained for days. You might also be surprised at how modern the city’s infrastructure is. The past two mayors of the city has placed statewide development and renewal as the top priority.

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St Petersburg, Russia’s Window to Europe

St Petersburg, Russia’s Window to Europe

The 350 year-old city of St Petersburg has become an epic of European revolt and intrigue. Its political and historical narratives can still be seen today all around the city. Below are a few convincing reasons on why you should check out this amazing city. The city is huge so prepare your St Petersburg Travel Guide and Offline City Map.

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The Art

Art is deeply ingrained in the veins of St. Petersburg. This is made obvious the moment you set foot into the city. Almost all the streets are covered in amazing street art that conveys various political and personal views by the artists. The most famous among this marvelous works of art is Timofey Radya’s manifesto All I Know About Street Art he painted at a former plastics factory and dedicated to the St Petersburg Street Art Museum. If you are not that into street art, the world renowned Hermitage Museum houses invaluable works by Rembrandt, Leonardo, Michelangelo, Rubens, and other famous artists.

The Parks

St. Petersburg has several world class parks worthy of your attention the most famous one being the Lower Park which is also referred to as the Russian Versailles. Its location which is between the Grand Palace and the seashore allows for an enthralling scenery and soothing breeze. The Lower Park houses the largest system of fountains in the world. Its arrangement of over 140 fountains will definitely make your jaw drop. It has three major cascades, each one distinct from the others.

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The Palaces

St Petersburg has no shortage of majestic palaces. The Pavlovsk Palace was designed by several of its era’s brightest architects to serve as the perfect summer residence for Great Paul I. inside of the palace is like a different world where cultures from all over the world converge. It has sections dedicated for a particular culture. Its most popular sections are the Egyptian Vestibule, the Italian Hall, and the Greek Hall. Also hanging all around the palace interior are priceless French paintings. The palace also has a serene garden where musical greats such as Strauss occasionally perform.

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Beijing, China’s Political, Economic, and Cultural center

Beijing, China’s Political, Economic, and Cultural center

Beijing was one of the world's great ancient capitals and today it is home to some of the finest remnants of China's imperial past. It is also known as a city of reinvention, undergoing several major changes to keep up with modern times without losing its identity. Below are some amazing reasons to go to Beijing. Beijing is a massive city so make sure you have the Beijing Travel Guide and Offline City Map & Metro.

Palaces of the Emperors

Beijing has been around for almost 3 millennia and it has been witness to three powerful dynasties that reigned over China. It’s been home to 34 emperors many of which ordered the construction of their own palaces, vacation houses, and other structures to serve as their legacy. Many such cultural sites from the Summer Palace to the Ming Tombs remain in good condition and serve as reminders of China’s rich culture and history.

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Old Beijing

Most of Beijing has been modernized but remnants of the Old Beijing still exist the most popular of which is the world famous Peking Opera. Another must-see is the Hutong and Quadrangle. Also scattered all across the city are temples and traditional teahouses. Comparing the New Beijing with the Old Beijing will definitely deepen your understanding the effects of modernization.

Magnificent Sites

There are numerous world famous attractions in Beijing with many of them included in various must-see destinations lists. As a matter of fact, the humongous city has too many locations worthy of your time exploring them all in one visit is practically impossible. To name a few:

·         The Forbidden City – home to the Imperial Palace Complex which is one of the most popular and best preserved ancient sites in the world.

·         Tiananmen Square - the largest city square in the world.

·         The Great Wall – a World Heritage Site and also one of the Eight Wonders of the World.

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4.      Traditional Cuisine

Beijing is the hub of China. Not only is it the best place to taste authentic Chinese food, it is also where you can find a wide variety of foreign cuisines and all kinds of exotic flavors. The city was home to royalty and many of the famous local dishes were once served as part of imperial cuisine.

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Bruges, a City of Historic Medieval Feel

Bruges, a City of Historic Medieval Feel

Bruges offers one of the most unique experiences in Europe and listed below are some of the reasons why. Before visiting the city, make sure you have your trusty Bruges Travel Guide with Offline City Street Map.

Like Living in a Fairytale

Bruges looks and feels out of this world, like a place out of a Disney storybook mainly because most of the city has remained unchanged through the centuries. It still has its cobblestone streets, horse-drawn carriages, and swirling canals. Many of the buildings have also remained the same, still sporting architecture from hundreds of years ago. The city being fairly small also means you can do all your exploration on foot.

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Captivating Canals

Bruges’ fascinating winding canals earned it the nickname of “Venice of the North”. The waterways also make exploring the city through canal boat rides. Many boat operators are also quite knowledgeable Bruges’ history so they can teach you a lot during the boat ride. Just keep in mind that canal boat riding is a favorite activity of tourists visiting the city so it is better to go on one in the morning to avoid long queues.

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Tasty Chocolate

Bruges has numerous chocolate shops and all of them sell high quality, authentic chocolate. Many of them also use their own original recipes so their chocolates cannot be found anywhere else. Some even offer sample boxes for tourists who want to have a free taste. The most famous chocolate box is probably the one sold by Chocolatier Dumon.

Different Beers

Beer is a mainstay of life in Bruges. Aside from beerhouses, almost all restaurants and eateries also serve and extensive assortment of beers. One of the city’s most infamous booze is the Pauwel Kwak which is served in a tall, funnel-like cup and is known for its unique crisp taste. If you want to visit just one beerhouse, the 2be makes a great choice since it has one of the largest collections of beers in the city.

Calm Atmosphere

Unlike most European cities that are noisy and fast paced, Bruges is serene and calm. Most of the activity is on the town square. The rest of the city is as laid back as most rural towns. Bikes and walking are the main modes of transportation and most establishments close early.

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San Diego, an Emerging Travel Bargain

San Diego, an Emerging Travel Bargain

Most of California has still not fully recovered from the recent economic downturn it has endured. Many Californian cities have turned to tourism to bolster their financial position and San Diego is one of them. Take advantage of really cheap air fares, discounted hotel stays, affordable shopping, more affordable luxury spas, and more. So bring your sunscreen, download the San Diego Travel Guide and Offline City Street Map, and get ready to go to a city with one of the most reliable track records when it comes to sunshine and favorable temperatures. If you aren’t convinced yet, below are a few reasons that might change your mind.

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San Diego Safari Park

The Sand Diego Safari Park looks like it’s been sliced off of Africa. It is a 1,800 acre preserve that houses more than 3,500 animals from almost 300 species. Observe wildlife in their natural habitat from herbivores such as red-fronted gazelles to predators such as Sumatran tigers. If you are going with your family, this is the perfect place to teach kids about nature.

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Rancho La Puerta

Some historians claim this 70 year-old spa as the first fitness spa in the world. Despite being considered by many as the best spa in California, not many know about it mainly due to its location which is on the other side of the border near the town of Tecate. It is definitely a hidden gem worth checking out. Because it does not get that many visitors, its prices remain low and there are no queues.

Border Fields State Park

The Border Fields State Park is home to the most beloved beach in California. However, it is also the hardest park to access. The park is close to the border and once you’re at the beach, crossing to the other side is super easy. So you’ll have to do a lot of work to get the gates to open. Once you get in, however, it’s like you’ve just arrived in paradise. In most Saturdays, there are barely any people in it. It’s like having your own private beach.

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Toronto, One of the Most Diverse Cities in the World

Toronto, One of the Most Diverse Cities in the World

Around half of Toronto’s population was born in another country, making Canada’s largest city one of the most diverse locations in the world. It is a place where different cultures and tastes merge. Below are some more reasons to visit Toronto. Make sure you have the Toronto Travel Guide and Offline City Map so you don’t get lost.

Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF)

The Toronto International Film Festival hosted by the city every September is the most important film festival in the world after the Cannes Film Festival. In fact, each year several of the films screened in the 41 year-old TIFF go on to win major awards in the Golden Globe Awards and more importantly the Academy Awards. Not only is September in Toronto heaven for xenophiles, it is also a great opportunity for fans to see their favorite celebrities in person.

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Art Gallery of Ontario (AGO)

The Art Gallery of Ontario houses one of the biggest collections of Canadian and International Art in the West. Normally, tickets are required to see any of its works of art but admission is free on Wednesday evenings. Temporary exhibitions and art shows are also held in the AGO at a regular basis.

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Gastronomic Delights

Toronto was named one of the top 15 food cities in the world by Conde Nast Traveler. The city’s most famous food item is its Montreal-style bagels that are said to be one of the best bagels in the world. The city is home to numerous renowned restaurants including:

·         Bent - one of superstar Chef Susur Lee's Asian-fusion restaurants.

·         The Cactus Club Cafe - serves outstanding West Coast seafood dishes.

·         Café Boulud – a French brasserie owned by Michelin-starred Chef Daniel Boulud.

·         Buca Bar and Restaurant – famous for its Italian brunches, business lunches, and tapas.

·         Raca Cafe & Bar –French and Italian eatery owned by Ivana Raca.

·         Campechano – best Mexican restaurant in the city.

·         Colette Grand Café – has unrivalled patisserie.

·         Drake One Fifty – number one when it comes to comfort food.

More travel guides and detailed city maps of the world’s best destinations can be found on eTips.

Montreal, Canada’s Party City

Montreal, Canada’s Party City

Montreal is one of Canada’s most popular cities known for having the liveliest nightlife in the region. Keep in mind though that is more to Montreal than its nightlife. Here are a few compelling reasons to check the city out. And make sure you have your Montreal Travel Guide and Offline City Map when you do.

Travel to Montreal!

The Food

Canadians love good food, especially those who live in Montreal. Montreal has the most restaurants per capita in all of North America. Numerous food-related festivals are held throughout the year the most famous ones being the Burger Week and the MTL à Table. You can even get food without going to a restaurant. Food trucks roam all around the city during weekdays, most of them affiliated to a local chef. The star players of the Montreal food scene are of course still the restaurants. Here are the ones you should check out:

·         The Manitoba in the Mile-Ex serves Nordic/boreal dishes

·         The Junior in Griffintown specializes in Filipino cuisine

·         The Salmigondis in Petite-Italie is known for its modern Italian cookery

·         The Biiru in Downtown offers Japanese izakaya.

The Architecture

Architecture in Montreal is one of the most varied in North America with American, French, and English architecture being the main influencers. Canada is one of the most desirable immigration destinations in the world. Montreal has immigrants from Portugal, China, Israel, Italy, Ireland, Philippines, and more and these immigrants also brought their own styles and preferences in architecture. The marriage of so many architectural ideas makes exploring the city such a marvelous experience. Must-see structures include:

·         Canadian Centre for Architecture

·         Old-Montreal cobblestoned streets

·         Plateau Mont-Royal townhouses

·         Outremont mansions

The Unique Vibe

There are several things that make Montreal such a one-of-a-kind destination. Below are just some of them’

·         It is the largest French-speaking city in the world after Paris.

·         It is the most laid-back city in North America.

·         It is technologically modern and traditionally artistic at the same time.

·         Canadians are known the world over for being overly friendly and helpful.

Montreal travel guide for iPhone, iPad & AppleWatch

You can find a truly extraordinary experience in Montreal. For more guides and offline digital maps, turn to eTips.

Pompeii, a Chilling Archeological Site

Pompeii, a Chilling Archeological Site

Pompeii was once the largest, richest, and most majestic cities in the Roman era, until disaster struck and reduced it to ruins. Vesuvius’ maiden eruption in ’79 AD covered the entire city under volcanic dust. Today, Pompeii has become one of the most famous ruins in the world. Here are a few reasons why you should add Pompeii in your travel bucket list. And remember to download the Pompeii Travel Guide with Offline City Street Map for an easier and more pleasant vacation.

Pompeii Travel Guide

The Shrine of Pompeii

Thousands of believers headed by Bartolo Longo undertook a massive fundraising to gather funds for the construction of the Shrine of Pompeii. Antonio Cua led the construction for free in the 1876. The structure has been expanded several times through the centuries due to the rapidly growing number of visitors. Today, more than 6 million pilgrims visit the site each year to pay their respects and participate in the prayer to Virgin Mary of Pompeii. The prayer is also broadcast by radio and television all over the world for the millions of believers who cannot come.

The Forum of Pompeii

The Forum was the heart of Pompeii. It was its economic, political, and religious center. It was also where all important religious events were carried out. At the center of its square lied the most important ancient religious site in the city, the Temple of Apollo. The temple used to house several statues of Roman gods all of which were transferred to the Archaeological Museum of Naples.

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The Lupanar of Pompeii

The people of Pompeii were never shy to show their love of the pleasures of the flesh. Many houses in the city had secret rooms where slaves were pimped by their masters at quite a cheap price of two to eight assi which was equivalent to the price of one to four glasses of wine. The Lupanar was built specifically to serve as the city’s whorehouse. This gigantic brothel had two floors, the ground floor for masters and the second floor for commoners. The walls were lined with paintings and sculptures depicting voracious lovers.

The ruins of Pompeii are massive so make sure you bring a map with you. Get offline maps and travel guides from your trusty companion eTips.

Singapore, the Lion City

Singapore, the Lion City

The city of Singapore is insanely popular to tourists. Playing a big part in its appeal is its insane revisit value. Singapore is one of the fastest changing locations in the world. Just give it 3 to 5 years and another visit is sure to yield all new experiences. Due to the city’s constant evolution, make sure you have a Singapore Travel Guide and Offline City Street Map when you make your visit. Below are a few of the reasons that make Singapore a standout tourist spot.

Singapore Travel Guide

Vibrant Nightlife

Just as what is to be expected from a major city, Singapore’s nightlife does not disappoint. The entertainment district is located right at the city center and it is a section that never sleeps. If you’re looking to party, check out the vivid nightclubs. The most notable one is probably Zouk in which the some of the world’s most talented DJs such as David Guetta and the Chemical Brothers often perform. If you prefer a relaxing time while enjoying a nice view then choose one of the many roof top bars or one of the clubs close to the sea.

Amazing Cuisine

Singapore is extremely popular. Tourists from all over the world visit it every year and to accommodate the different tastes of its visitors, the city’s cuisine has expanded to include hundreds of influences. If you want to taste as many different foods as possible while staying in just one city, there is no better place than Singapore. Below are some of the most popular ones:

·         Basilico – famed for its ample Italian food buffet.

·         Lime – serves all kinds of Asian food.

·         Ikoi – specializes in Japanese food.

·         Carousel – has a little bit of everything from French, Japanese, Asian, Italian, etc.

Singapore guide for iPhone, iPad and Applewatch

A Great Place to Start Over

If you’re traveling from place to place because you are looking for somewhere you can migrate to, then Singapore might give you exactly what you’ve been seeking. Singapore is a place where countless cultures converge which makes it easy for anyone to fit in. Everyone is welcome in Singapore and its vibrant economy ensures a good start.

Added tip:

Another place to visit too is Marina Bay Sands. Does that ring a bell? It’s a popular place.

Why not take a selfie with Singapore’s merlion too? Singapore is also great for shopping for signatured brands!

Whichever destination you plan to visit, make sure to get a travel guide from eTips to help make navigating through the city easier.

Kyoto, Japan’s Second City

Kyoto, Japan’s Second City

Kyoto, Japan’s second city, is described by many as the opposite of Tokyo, the country’s first city. While Tokyo is vibrant and modern, Kyoto has remained serene and traditional throughout the centuries. Below are some of the many reasons why you should visit this city known as the heart of Japanese culture. And don’t forget to have your Kyoto Travel Guide and Offline City Street Map ready.

Historic Temples and Shrines

Kyoto has an overabundance of temples having more than 1,600 Zen, Shinto, and Buddhist temples and shrines. Visiting them all is impossible so here are the ones you definitely should not miss:

·         Fushimi-Inari Shrine Complex – founded in 711 A.D., this site is the quintessential representative of ancient Japan. Walking along the slightly uphill path lined up by thousands of red lacquered gates is definitely an unforgettable experience. Visitors are also given the chance to take part in the Misogi water purification ritual before entering the temple complex.

·         Shunko-in Temple – built in 1590, it paves the way to Japanese Zen tradition. And its monks are quite modern. Its guestrooms have free Wi-Fi and the temple’s deputy monk even has a very active Twitter account @RevTakaZen. The lovely gardens in the temple provide the perfect atmosphere for contemplation.

·         Nanzen-ji Temple Complex – houses some of the most beautiful temple gardens in Kyoto such as the Nanzen-ji Head Gardens and the Leaping Tiger Garden.

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Spectacular Outdoor Spaces

There is beauty all around Kyoto. The city’s most popular activity happens at the beginning of spring. The Hanami (Cherry Blossom Viewing) attracts thousands of tourists each year. Even if you miss out on the Hanami, there are still plenty of fun stuff to do in Kyoto even during the other seasons. All year round, you can take the Sagano Romantic Train and experience a jaw-dropping view of the Hozu River gorge. You can also visit in spring and view the hillsides that seem blazing with red thanks to hundreds of fiery maples. Then there is also the renowned Arashiyama bamboo forest where you can immerse yourself in the tranquility of the greenery.

Kyoto eTips Travel Guide

Traditional Sake

Sake was being brewed and sold in Kyoto since early 16th century. There is no better place to get authentic sake than the source. The most popular Sake house in the city is the OZU Kyoto Maison du Sake located near the Kyoto Imperial Palace. It serves a wide variety of sake each one coming with a set of carefully chosen receptacles.

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