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A Glimpse of Rural Local Life Along Kyrgyzstan’s Pamir Highway

  • Catharina Robbertze
  • 28 August 2012

If you’re looking for a historical, unusual, challenging and epic path to follow by bicycle, the Silk Road has to be it. As one on a 12,000-kilometre Silk Road bike trip organised by Tour d’Afrique, I couldn’t have anticipated that the journey would be so eventful, varied and memorable… especially when meeting and learning from locals like those we met along the Pamir Highway in the mountains of Kyrgyzstan.

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Picking Fresh Figs Through Agritourism in Croatia

  • Gina Douglas
  • 19 August 2012

Through our travel guide in Croatia, we had found this family-owned and -run agritourism farm called Villa Solo. I was about to learn that by staying at an agritourism farm you get past a place’s small talk and first impressions. It envelops you as a local, particularly if you get off the beaten tourist path.

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Livingstone, Zambia – Stunning to the Senses

  • Lindy Nauta
  • 20 June 2012

As soon as we get to the plane door, it hits us: dry heat mixed with the smell of the bush. It is instantly recognisable, our senses confirming what our minds already know. We are in the middle of Africa! Specifically, Livingstone, Zambia. A few kilometres away, the ‘Smoke That Thunders’ drifts up to heights of over 400 metres, a plume clearly visible from the air signalling the start of an incredible trip.

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Join a Paper Flower Tradition in Thanh Thien, Vietnam

  • Rachel Greene, Rose Charities
  • 18 June 2012

For 400 years, the villagers in Thanh Thien, Vietnam, have been making beautiful handmade paper flowers using unique designs passed down through the generations. Today, Thanh Thien is regaining fame for its paper flowers. To develop a program to attract tourists to the village, Thanh Thien has recently partnered with Rose Charities Vietnam.

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When Cooking Becomes an Experience… in Burkina Faso

  • Polona Vida Čeligoj
  • 8 June 2012

Kafuli – which in the local Dioula language means ‘a gathering of different people’ – is a local grassroots organisation in Burkina Faso running a variety of projects, from foster parenting to programs in education, fair-trade agriculture and responsible tourism. Yes, you heard right – it’s small but it actually runs all of these projects.

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A Hands-On Cooking Experience in Luang Prabang, Laos

  • Cindy Fan
  • 6 June 2012

Buzz from travellers about Tamarind Café’s cooking class flew around Luang Prabang’s easy-going and placid streets, chatter tagged with words “authentic” and “real local food.” The course includes a morning market tour, the chance to make (and eat) six dishes and an education in the food of Laos. And an education is needed. Lao cuisine is mysterious.

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Chadar Trek: Walking on a Frozen River in Ladakh, India

  • Divij Pasrija
  • 4 June 2012

With my rucksack lightly packed, I travelled from summery Delhi to the small town of Leh and the start of my trekking adventure in Ladakh in snowy northern India. I had come to Leh to hike one particular route, called the Chadar Trek, along the frozen Zanskar River, one major reason why tourists visit Ladakh in the winter (mid-January to the end of February).

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Blissing Out in the Dry Tortugas, West of Key West, Florida

  • Amber Nolan
  • 16 May 2012

“Wow,” is all I can say. From this angle, we can see the entire length of the island. It seems artificial, and certainly doesn’t look like any other part of Florida. I feel content with this paradise around me, and am completely “blissed out.” I hope the ferry never drops visitors off at this island. I appreciate it so much more knowing how far I had come to make this happen.

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Trekking to Northern Thailand’s Mountain-top Villages

  • Gina Douglas
  • 9 April 2012

I look around at the motorcycles, the well-dressed children and the minimalist huts and find myself wondering if it’s all an act. Do they head back down the mountain after we’re all asleep? Is this just a well-produced illusion for tourists? Then I notice a woman hanging up laundry and I pass what looks like a bare-bones general store. This definitely is a lived-in – and by all appearances happy – village.

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Worth the Journey! Tayrona National Park, Colombia

  • Heather Rath
  • 4 April 2012

Today, Tayrona proudly displays its true nature as a safe environment for tourists. Since its elevation in status to a national park in 1969, this biodiversity area covering 12,000 hectares of land and 3,000 of sea has been growing in popularity. Within its territory are sandy beaches, dazzling blue/azure ocean waters, tropical dry jungle and a rainforest up to 900 metres in the Sierra Nevada mountain range.

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