Any clues on the best spot to admire the gorgeous stars of the surreal Milky Way?
In this week’s 123RF World Travel Guide, we start our journey under the glitz and glamour of Monaco’s grand Monte Carlo. Next, we embark on our horseback adventure in Mongolia’s vast wilderness.
Following that, we’re seduced by the spice alleys and snake charmers of Morocco’s intoxicating Marrakesh. Finally, we end our trip in Namibia’s epic Etosha National Park.
For the 123RF World Travel Guide, Monaco is like that fancy dress that you constantly stare at, but can never afford. Or like the musky scent of the hazelnut eyed, bourbon sampling gentleman, at the edge of the bar. It’s tempting and seductive. Likewise, Monaco teases you, beyond your measure and capability.
After all, everyone’s wildest desires are things that we simply do not own. And such is the world famous Monte Carlo, the country’s flag bearer for its prodigious wealth. Naysayers claim it’s overrated, nothing more than a luxurious time-past. Maybe it is, but there’s only one way to find out.
This tiny country’s exuberant attitude also makes it way to its waters. The Oceanographic Museum of Monaco is dedicated to discoveries of marine science. Stuck dramatically to a cliff, the freshly pumped sea water allows for an array of dazzling species to live within its walls. Alternatively, head for the Exotic Botanical Gardens for beautiful views of the country.
If you’ve ever wanted to embark on your epic horseback adventure, Mongolia is the best place to do so. Ancient monasteries, stunning mountain ranges and crystal clear rivers only add to the charm of this picture perfect land.
The Gurvan Saikhan National Park is one of the country’s most prized possessions. This sprawling land is home to majestic vistas and sand dunes, so spending an extra couple of days here is well worth it. Additionally, the park also accommodates Mongolia’s extensive wildlife scene, with birds, snow leopards and gazelles calling this home.
Next, be sure to make your way to Amarbayasgalant Khiid for one of Mongolia’s most popular monasteries. The monastery oozes with a lost in the jungle like charm, thanks to its rather natural state, which only adds to its allure. Finally, the 123RF World Travel Guide recommends heading out to Ulaanbaatar. The capital city shows how the country is more than horses and rivers, as museums, monasteries and memorials are found in abundance.
For the 123RF World Travel Guide, Montenegro is like the new kid on the block. For much of its time, this country has played second fiddle to the likes of Croatia and Italy. However, its Adriatic coastline has finally had its voice heard by European travelers looking to escape the summer crowds and rising travel expenditure.
The town of Kotor is the best place to begin your journey. This captivating medieval city brilliantly combines the old with the new. During the day, spend hours wandering into alleys of its cobbled streets and discover gems like the City Walls and the St Tryphon’s Cathedral. However, come nightfall, put on your dancing shoes and experience the capital city’s vibrant nightlife.
Next, travel to Lovcen for a dose of Montenegro’s best landscapes. The highlight here is the magnificent Njegos Museum, which sits on one of the highest peaks of the country. Additionally, head to the region of Budva if you fail to resist taking a dip in the inviting waters of the Adriatic.
From the imposing golden dunes of the Sahara, to the majestic snow-capped peaks of the Atlas, Morocco promises to satisfy your cravings for a dramatic adventure. For a truly authentic experience, the 123RF World Travel Guide picks the Djemaa El Fna.
Marrakesh’s UNESCO-declared ‘Masterpiece of World Heritage’ comes alive with fires from the charcoal, tunes of the snake charmers, energy of the acrobatic performers, and scent of the spice masters. In short, spend the night here, and you’ll have the chance to be a part of this powerful, highly entertaining tale.
Following that, travel to Casablanca to further indulge in Morocco’s seductive charm. This underrated city is home to a fascinating architecture, art and culture scene, with the Hassan Ⅱ Mosque being the pick of the bunch. However, no trip to Morocco would be complete without a visit to Chefchaouen. The city’s labyrinth of blue hued walls make it an essential for the #DoItForTheGram wave.
For those who dare, Mozambique offers an exciting getaway with swaying palms, beautiful beaches and a hearty dose of adventure. When you’re here, begin your journey in the beautiful Mozambique Island. This tiny island is a UNESCO World Heritage Site that demands more attention, with Portuguese colonial structures like chapels, museums and forts.
The country’s allure continues with the massive Lake Malawi. Also known as Lake Niassa among the locals, it’s best to spend a night or two here and explore the rich underwater life or simply lay in your tranquil eco-lodge. Additionally, the 123RF World Travel Guide picks Gorongosa National Park for a pit stop. The park lacks the tourist allure of other African game reserve, however it remains a good option to experience the best of Mozambique’s wildlife.
Myanmar is about as authentic as a country gets. Here, there’s no room for pretentiousness or over-the-top services, and the country’s attractions are a testament to this. First up, the Shwedagon Pagoda.
One of Buddhism’s most sacred places, a visit here enables you to seek unparalleled tranquility and peace. Meanwhile, if you ever need a landmark to arrive, just keep an eye out for the staggering 327 feet tall stupa. This imperial work of art is adorned with Gautama Buddha’s hair along with tonnes of gold leaf and gems.
Myanmar’s humble roots also takes the 123RF World Travel Guide to the beautiful Inle Lake. This massive body of water is perfect for a stroll as you feast your eyes and lenses to its purple, sunset-kissed skyline and silhouettes of fishermen going about their daily lives. Finally, if you’re looking to step back into Myanmar’s past, Bagan is the best place for it. This archaeological site is dotted with temples and history that’ll surely humble any traveler.
Namibia is ‘Africa 101’. This introduction to one of the world’s most diverse continents promises to satisfy almost every African bucket list that you can ever dream of. Sossusvlei is arguably the most popular attraction of this power-packed country.
This massive desert homes extraterrestrial-like, red sand dunes, thanks to the ever constant wind that continues to work like an artist to shape and mold these features. Alternatively, do keep an eye out for camels, birds and ostriches who frequently parole these lands.
However, for the best of Namibia’s wildlife, head straight to the Etosha National Park. Simply stop by any watering hole and watch lions, elephants and springboks gather. The prospect of having the animals come to you, is what sets this apart for us.
Next up on our 123RF World Travel Guide, join us as we explore the uncharted waters and World War Ⅱ Bomber Track walk of Nauru, along with Nigeria’s exploding arts and music scene in Lagos. Also, catch up on our previous 123RF World Travel Guide series where we uncovered the mud-brick built Grande Mosque of Mali and Micronesia’s world class dive sites in Palau.