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Visit the Republic of Karakalpakstan, 13 Amazing places in Northern Uzbekistan

Do you want to visit Karakalpakstan? Have you ever heard about the Republic of Karakalpakstan? No? Well, don’t worry, because most people don’t know about the existence of this autonomous republic in the northwest region of Uzbekistan. Yes, Karakalpakstan is in Uzbekistan. Truth said, most people don’t know much about Uzbekistan either. I entered Uzbekistan five times, and on this page, I will focus on this desert region full of beautiful places to visit. For those who know me, I have a natural connection to deserted places. I like sand, dust, and emptiness. ■ Also read: 20 Amazing places to visit in Uzbekistan. Enjoy! Curiosities about…

Visit Lebanon – Amazing places for 1 Week Travel Itinerary

Do you want to visit Lebanon? For a long time, I had the desire to visit Lebanon. Years passed and I somehow always postponed my trip to this Middle Eastern country. Due to recent political and regional conflict, I decided that the time has come, and I had to engage myself to organize and travel in Lebanon as soon as possible. Lebanon is a fascinating country located on the shores of the Mediterranean sea. Lebanon is a mysterious nation since we don’t hear people speaking about it very often. Visiting Lebanon is easy because it’s very developed, safe in most of its regions, and full of…

Baalbek – The colossal ancient city of Lebanon

The town of Baalbek is located in Lebanon’s Bekaa Valley, roughly 85km northeast of Beirut and 75km north of Damascus in Syria. Baalbek lies in the Anti-Lebanon foothills, and visitors arrive here mainly to visit the famous Phoenician / Roman ruins. For a long time, I had the desire to visit Lebanon. Years passed and I somehow always postponed my trip to this Middle Eastern country. During my one week trip to Lebanon, I had the pleasure of visiting sites such as Crusader Castle and the old market of Byblos, the incredible Jeita caves, the Roman ruins of Baalbek, and the ruins of Anjar on the…

Why I decided to visit Kyrgyzstan again: 22-day travel itinerary

As a traveler, I have a strong necessity of returning to countries I really liked. Instead of focusing on making a new country every time I have the chance of traveling, I mostly go back to countries I want to spend more time to visit and explore places I somehow missed on previous trips. On this blog post, I’ll write about my second visit to Kyrgyzstan. You can also check my page about my first time in the country: First time in Kyrgyzstan: 10-day road trip itinerary. I spent 22 days in Kyrgyzstan and explored many of its most famous places, mainly in the west part…

First time in Kyrgyzstan: 10-day travel itinerary

Kyrgyzstan is an amazing, uncommon travel destination, most definitely “off the beaten track”. Unique in its cultural richness and unmatched natural beauty, Kyrgyzstan has been home to a variety of cultures, empires, clans, and tribes among one of the lushest terrains in all of Central Asia. With an incredible display of rivers, waterfalls and nearly 2,000 lakes, its beautiful mountainous landscape has provided the setting for over 2,000 years of history. On this blog post, I’ll write about my first visit to Kyrgyzstan. You can also check my page about my second time in the country: Why I decided to visit Kyrgyzstan again: 22-day travel itinerary.…

The Greco-Roman city of Ephesus: a magnificent return to the past

In the summer of 2003, I had the opportunity to visit Turkey for the first time. In possession of an Interrail ticket across Europe and during my train trip, I secured a rental car along with two Polish guys I had met previously at a hostel. Later, we drove from Istanbul down the west coast of Turkey to explore several of its noted historical sites. As time passed and memories faded, Ephesus became like many other places – a victim of my forgetfulness due to the recent years’ extreme traveling. “HOWEVER, ONE THOUGHT WAS ALWAYS CONSCIOUS: ONE DAY I WOULD RETURN TO EPHESUS.“ So, this is…

Chankillo, Peru – the 2,300-year-old solar desert observatory

The pre-Columbian history of Peru began about 15,000 years ago, until the times of the Inca civilization. This vigorous and indomitable Inca empire extended beyond Peru, Ecuador, Bolivia and Chile. The end of the Incas arrived with the Spanish colonizers in 1531. A mix of indomitable spirit, lack of serfdom, refusal to external dominance and unexpected death by unknown diseases, brought the unfortunate decimation of these people by the Spaniards. Independence is achieved three centuries later, led by Simon Bolivar – a Venezuelan military leader who was partly responsible for the revolutions against the Spanish empire in South America. Peru has diverse geographical areas that are…

Visit Qatar – 10 Amazing places to travel in Qatar

Qatar is a fascinating country to travel. The Gulf countries are a bit unknown, as most travelers have a little notion about what there’s to visit and end up visiting major urban areas. However, outside the capitals there are always places of historical and cultural interest. Qatar surprised me because outside the capital, Doha, there are many amazing places to visit. Of course I’m a but suspicious, since I love desert landscapes and obnoxious hot destinations. Qatar, apart from several different types of desert vistas and abandoned fishermen villages, hosts some of the best petroglyphs I’ve seen in my life. Qatar’s history is first documented by…

Peek Inside a Full Passport and be inspired to Travel

Visas and passport stamps come in all shapes and colors. There are larger visas, smaller visas, decorated visas and text only visas. Some are purchased at the border and called Visa on Arrival (VOA), while others have to be previously requested at an embassy. Some entry or exit stamps are blue, others red and some colored in pink. Some are beautiful, others less appealing and some even blurred. I think that even if a traveler does not travel to “collect” stamps in the passport, we all feel glad to have them. Somehow we can recall the experiences through which we passed while on the road, and…

Beautiful Pyongyang – A different look at North Korea’s capital

Pyongyang is the capital city of North Korea. Hundreds of beautifully crafted monuments and memorial murals showing off political leaders and party workers are scattered throughout the city. “Pyongyang is a lovely city for those who love Socialist Classicism architecture.” Pyongyang was heavily bombed and turned to rubble by USA during the Korean War, so most of the infrastructure in the city is built with a mix of socialist Soviet architecture style and Korean architecture. Like in all socialist influenced cities around the world, Pyongyang has a vast number of high-quality museums. Korean people in general are very friendly and always curious to interact with foreigners.…

Khertvisi – Georgia, the stunning 2,500-year-old fortress

Khertvisi, now in ruins, is one of the oldest forts in Georgia. Georgia is a country of the Caucasus, on the coast of the Black Sea, located both in Europe and Asia. 250 km distance from Tbilisi – the country’s capital, Khertvisi fortress protects the entrance of the valley of Erusheti Mountains that head towards the extraordinary Vardzia cave monastery. The Khertvisi fortress is charmingly situated on the top of a high rocky cliff, on the entrance of a narrow canyon at the confluence of Mitkvari (biggest river in Georgia) and Paravani rivers. The collection of old Georgian Chronicles testify to its existence from the most…

Taj Mahal Mausoleum Complex in Agra – India

Taj Mahal The Taj Mahal, located in Agra, is a magical place. A World Heritage Site, the Taj Mahal was built in 1631 to be the tomb of Mumtaz Mahal, the wife of the Mughal Emperor Mirza Shahabuddin Baig Muhammad Khan Shah Jahan. This masterpiece of Indian architecture has a dome measuring 44.4 meters / 145 feet high and is surrounded by four minarets. “The mausoleum is covered in marble and carved with floral ornaments. The building gets different shades of white depending on the time of the day.” Agra was built in 1475 by Badal Singh and Sikandar Lodi. It became the capital of the…

Visit Portugal – 100 Amazing places to travel in Portugal

Cradle of world history, Portugal is a unique travel destination. It is interesting how such a small country offers such a variety of landscapes, history, architecture and gastronomy. To visit Portugal is a great and unforgettable experience. Portugal tells the history of a country and even a bit of the world, through its historical and archaeological monuments from prehistoric times, with dinosaurs and rock carvings, to the discovery of faraway lands beginning the globalization process through the Discoveries. Portugal is a small country located at the westernmost edge of Europe, but it is a nation of great achievements. The more I travel, the more I understand…

Momotombo Volcano and Lake Managua – Nicaragua

Momotombo – Nicaragua On the shores of Lake Managua, Momotombo volcano is one of the most important national symbols of Nicaragua. This is due to its beautiful symmetrical shape, whether you admire it from afar or close. “A stunning cone-shaped volcano formed by overflown magma near the town of Puerto Momotombo on the shores of Lake Managua.” This conical stratovolcano is built up by many layers of hardened lava. The 1610 eruption forced the inhabitants of León to run away and relocate 48 km / 30 mi west, leaving their city behind. Today the ruins of León Viejo (Old León) are adjacent to the small town…

Pirate’s Bay in Charlotteville – Trinidad and Tobago

Pirate’s Bay Pirate’s Bay is a beautiful hidden spot located near Charlotteville on the north-eastern part of Tobago Island. Getting to the beach itself is not very easy, as you need to walk for a while. Down the stairs with a lot more than 100 steps you finally get to the incredible beach. The easy way to get there is by asking a fisherman in Man of War Bay to take you by boat. “The crystal clear water with several sailboats moored is of a unique beauty and a fantastic snorkeling site. The sunset came to flood the bay with an unbelievably dazzling light.” The history…

Amalfi Coast in the Tyrrhenian Sea – Italy

Amalfi Coast Undoubtedly one of the most impressive landscapes in Italy, the Amalfi Coast is famous for its magnificent vistas. The Amalfi Coast has many restaurants and hotels with amazing views over the southern coast of the Sorrentine Peninsula. In 1997, all this region was included on the UNESCO World Heritage Site’s list as a cultural landscape. Amalfi Coast extends for about 60 km / 37 mi from Salerno to Sorrento along the Tyrrhenian Sea. This idyllic place offers the most beautiful Italian coastal views. For its natural beauty, picturesque towns and romantic landscapes, Amalfi is often used in the film industry. Positano Positano town is the most charming…

Blyde River Canyon in Mpumalanga – South Africa

Blyde River Canyon The Blyde River Canyon is one of the most beautiful places I visited during my trip to South Africa. The amazing landscapes and outstanding colors made me experience unforgettable trekking moments. “The Park encompasses the famous canyon which is the third deepest in the world and the largest in South Africa.” Blyde River Canyon Nature Reserve is located in the Mpumalanga region, near the small town of Graskop. It extends over 50 km / 31 mi across different types of terrain and vegetation. Bourke’s Luck Potholes Huge cylindrical potholes and natural swirling whirlpools caused by water erosion over the centuries. Located on the…

Erg Chebbi Dunes in Sahara Desert – Morocco

Erg Chebbi Dunes Erg Chebbi Dunes are a stunning part of Sahara Desert, on the southeastern part of Morocco, close to the Algerian border. This incredible sea of sand is the ideal place for a couple of days enjoying one of the best holiday destinations in Morocco. Explore the dunes and admire a beautiful sunrise or sunset over the horizon. “Having a surprising orange hue, the Erg Chebbi Dunes are one of the most beautiful places in Africa.” Challenge yourself to climb the 250 m / 810 ft “Grand Dune” near Merzouga village. The serene warm wind will welcome you. The vistas are breathtaking and worth…

Visit Uzbekistan – 20 Amazing places to visit in Uzbekistan

Uzbekistan is one of those countries many people never heard about. For most travelers, this doubly landlocked country is somehow deep inside our imaginary of being a faraway Silk Route nation, full of exotic people, ancient architecture and where Alexander the Great fell in love with Roxana- his future wife. ? I entered Uzbekistan five times: July 2004 – Border of KZ ?? – fly out to IR ?? – Backpacking Central Asia June 2012 – Border of KZ ?? to TJ ?? – Central Asia Rally June 2012 – Border of AF ?? to TJ ?? – Driving alone July 2012 – Border of TJ…

Magic Colors of Chefchaouen – The blue city of Morocco

Chefchaouen – the Blue City of Morocco. Somehow, this blue painted old city stands out with a peculiar charm. Chefchaouen is undoubtedly one of the most picturesque and photogenic cities in Morocco. The name comes from the Berber word Achawen, “horns,” because of the mountain peaks that dominate and surround the city. On this page, I selected some beautiful photos of Chefchaouen. I hope you enjoy this photo essay. Photos of Chefchaouen – Northern Morocco Chefchaouen was founded back in 1471 and hosted a population composed mainly of Andalusian Moors. There’s a small fortress called La Kasbah that was built to fight the Portuguese invasions of…

Sacred and Religious Places to visit in Iran – Middle East

Iran is a deeply religious nation. Although the country’s official name is the Islamic Republic of Iran – not everyone is Muslim. There are other strong faith practitioners such as Christians, Zoroastrians, and Jewish. In fact, the Iranian Jewish community is the second largest in the Middle East just after Israel. Iranian people seems to have a deeply ingrained trust and love for their set of religious beliefs, living their lives by the integrity and commitment their faith requires. I have been to many Muslim countries, and I have noticed that people in Iran take their religion more seriously. ? So, why list these places in…

Doors of Marrakesh, Morocco – Voyage Through Time

I love doors. When I travel, I have particular interest in doors and windows. Doors reflect not only the personality of a city, but also the personality of its residents. There’s not one door the same as the next. Marrakesh, seen through doors, takes us on a historical time journey since the city was built until modern days. The old Medina of Marrakesh showcases amazing doors, giving its labyrinth alleys a unique charisma and charm. Founded back in 1071 by the Berber Almoravid sultan Youssef Ibn Tachfine, Marrakesh was the capital of Morocco during the 12th and 13th centuries. Marrakesh was, for a long time, a…

Historical Places to visit in Ethiopia – Horn of Africa

Ethiopia is a fantastic East African destination. I had the opportunity to visit Ethiopia and explore its major historical sites. Considered as the cradle of mankind, Ethiopia is the oldest region of human settlement. I urge everyone to give Ethiopia a chance and discover its friendly people, breathtaking landscapes, and incredible ancient history. Ethiopia – the first Christian nation – holds fantastic religious buildings and other historical destinations with castles, palaces, and hundreds-year-old mausoleums. On this page, I make a list of 37 historical places to travel in Ethiopia which are undoubtedly the country’s major tourist attractions. Don’t forget to leave a comment and share this…

Venice Iconic City – Memorable and Unforgettable Images, Italy

Venice, Italy Venice is a place that almost doesn’t need any words to describe it. It’s famous, historical, culturally on, memorable, outstanding. Getting the opportunity to visit Venice comes out to be one of the nicest experiences a traveler might have. Either visiting its palaces, exploring the museums, wandering along its old streets, discovering small alleys, crossing the countless picturesque bridges, taking a serenaded gondola ride on the canals, food and wine tasting, or just enjoying the romantic atmosphere, well, Venice will definitely keep you busy for a few days. Top 7 things to do in Venice 45 minute romantic gondola ride Visit the famous St.…

Monsanto de Idanha-a-Nova – Awe-inspiring Stone Village, Portugal

Monsanto is a unique granite built village in the center-east part of Portugal. Settled among huge stones on the top of the Cabeço de Monsanto hill, the village is of an incredible and unusual beauty. The streets of Monsanto are sided with granite houses, embedded in colossal stones. We can walk up the village until we reach the castle from where we enjoy amazing views over the region all the way to the Spanish border. The human presence in Monsanto dates back as early as the Lower Paleolithic (early Stone Age during the ice-ages), but the site was also inhabited by the Romans, the Visigoths and…

Luxor the World’s greatest open air Museum – Egypt

Have you heard about Luxor in Egypt? No? well, how about the Colossi of Memnon? or the Hatshepsut’s Temple? not yet? how about the Karnak temple? come on… not yet? Valley of the Kings and the famous tomb of the young pharaoh Tutankhamun??? ahh!! I knew Luxor was familiar to your traveler’s knowledge. Impossible not to be. The list of monuments and famous Egyptian historical sites could go on and on such as Valley of the Queens, Deir el-Medina, The Ramesseum, Medinet Habu or even Malkata. Luxor, from the Arabic El-Uqsur (meaning “the palaces” or “the castles”), the ancient Egyptian city of Thebes, located on the…

Visit Iceland – 90 Amazing places to travel in Iceland

Do you want to visit Iceland? Iceland is famous to have one of the most beautiful vistas in the world. Combining stunning landscapes with incredible natural phenomena such as geysers, active volcanoes, glacier lagoons and breathtaking waterfalls, Iceland definitely keeps us busy for a few weeks. Iceland is a European island located between the North Atlantic Ocean and the Arctic Ocean. For Nature lovers, lonely hikers, adventure seekers, daring drivers, photographers or mountain trekking enthusiasts, YES! – Iceland welcomes you. On this page, I make a list of 90 Amazing Places which are undoubtedly the country’s major tourist attractions. The sequence of the photographs has to…

Photos of Charming Old Cuba

Cuba is a fascinating country with a cheerful and interesting culture. A trip to Cuba will be engraved in your memory forever. Cuba is an easy country to travel, people are friendly and you can safely move around everywhere all by yourself. I had the opportunity to travel around the island for a month and explore a bit of all its more touristic places as well as its secret spots. Basically I drove around the island on a rent-a-car, visiting Cuba best destinations including the most remote beaches and villages. I advise everyone to visit Cuba, and experience an unique travel destination. It seems, due to…

Reasons why I liked North Korea – Visiting DPRK Explicit

People often point out reasons to dislike North Korea. Personally I only travel to enjoy places and things such as colors, people, little details, architecture, sounds, tastes, sunsets, smiles, etc. Because I never travel to dislike or criticize, on this page I will show you 88 images – photos – reasons that made me like the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea. Whatever reasons you might have to criticize DPRK, I invite you to indulge yourself to discover one of the least visited countries in the world. DPRK is indeed a fascinating destination with a very beautiful culture and ancient history. What does North Korea look like? DPRK cities were…

Inspiring Photos of Atacama Desert, northern Chile

Atacama Desert is famous, beautiful, and dry. In fact, Atacama is the driest place on Earth. Sheltered between the Atacama ocean trench and the Andes Mountains, this place offers breathtaking and Mars like landscapes. This desert region is all about 6000 m / 19685 ft high volcanoes, turquoise lagoons, desert wildlife, geysers, canyons and salt lakes. On this page, I share with you a collection of motivational pictures and inspiring photos of Atacama Desert in Chile. This includes places like El Tatio geysers, San Pedro city, Machuca, Salt Lakes, Death Valley, El Coyote and the unbelievable Valle de la Luna. I hope you enjoy it. ?…

Visit Peru – 80 Amazing places to travel in Peru

Do you want to visit Peru? Peru is a country in South America that many people are curious to visit. The combination of tropical latitudes, vast mountain ranges, several topographical variations and the two oceanic currents, the Humboldt and El Niño, gives Peru a large diversity of climates. Peru is a country that has jungle, beach, tropical climate, desert dunes, lakes, and mountains over 6000 meters / 19 685 feet high. ⛰ I had the opportunity of visiting Peru three times: from October 26th until November 16th = 24 days from December 29th until January 23rd = 26 days from August 21st until August 30th =…

Visit United Arab Emirates – 40 Amazing places to travel in the UAE

I was curious to travel in the UAE for quite some time. If you want to visit United Arab Emirates and don’t know where to go, this page will definitely help you. Contrary to what many people might think, the United Arab Emirates have a very rich history. This fact is sometimes forgotten and taken over by modern and famous cities such as Abu Dhabi and Dubai. ℹ️ There are seven Emirates within the UAE: Abu Dhabi Ajman Dubai Fujairah Ras al-Khaimah Sharjah Umm al-Quwain In addition to several historical relics, ancient ruins and centuries-old fortresses scattered in various locations. The UAE has a unique heritage…

Visit Iran: 80 Amazing places to Travel & Discover Iran

If you arrived on this page, I am sure you are curious and whiling to visit Iran right? So, let me tell you from the start, that Iran is an amazing country. Do you have any doubts about it? I know that the general opinion in the West is that Iran is a dangerous country. The NEWS in Europe and the US tell us about a different Iran. They describe a place full of violence that makes us believe the country is populated with mad, unfriendly and ferocious people. Well, we got that wrong… Why? First: Iran is one of the safest places I’ve ever been…

RTW Travel Around the World

To travel Around the World is a dream come true. For many people, traveling is an addiction. This state of being addicted is only really satisfied by … more travel of course. I was traveling around the world during 19 months without any programmed destinations. I had no pre-arranged itinerary. I went along, feeling the trip, visiting countries that were emerging in my mind and on my wish list. I visited and stayed the time that I felt like to. If I liked a place I’d stay more time, if I didn’t like it so much, I’d move on. On this page I’m not going to…

Visit Oman – 25 Amazing places to travel in Oman

Have you ever wanted to visit Oman? The Sultanate of Oman is a fascinating country located on the eastern tip of the Arabian Peninsula. Oman is a mysterious nation since we don’t hear people speaking about it very often. Visiting Oman is easy because it’s very safe and full of very friendly and hospitable people. On this page, I make a list of 25 Amazing Places which are undoubtedly the country’s major tourist attractions. Visit Oman 1- Ras Musandam Fjords Ras Musandam peninsula is separated from the rest of the country. It is famous for its breathtaking fjords of desert mountains and waters of a beautiful…

Best Travel Experiences

Throughout the World, there are many wonderful places to travel to. Yet, some unique experiences remain secrets, only a few people having the chance to become involved with them. On this page, I will describe some of the best travel experiences I’ve had, examples that can easily provide inspiration and motivation for your future travels. Please note: I’ve been traveling since 1999. So, some of the older photographs on this page are taken with more standard equipment and are of lesser quality than more recent images. Happy travels! Berber Triple Marriage in Sahara Desert I had the opportunity of being invited to an authentic Amazigh (Berber)…

8 Days Tibet Tour – Kathmandu to Lhasa Overland

I traveled to Tibet in the month of August. As I was in Kathmandu – Nepal, I decided to take the opportunity of being so close to visit Tibet – China. To visit Tibet, all travelers need to buy a guided tour from a credited travel agency. So I purchased an 8-day tour from Kathmandu to Lhasa called – Roof of the World. The trips to Tibet can be made alone or in a group. You must always have a guide for you and a jeep/minibus, i.e., even if you choose to go alone you have to travel with a guide. In my case, I got…

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The Author of this Blog


HI! I'm João Leitão. Traveling independently since 1999, I explored more than 130 countries and territories in Africa, Antarctica, Asia, Europe, North & South America and Oceania. Welcome to my adventure travel blog, where I gathered useful information and inspiring narratives to motivate you to travel more. Follow on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest e YouTube.

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