Ten Places to Visit

I feel that there is a traveller in all of us, a part of us that wants to explore the unknown and see things for yourself instead of hearing about them from someone else. So to make the exam-blues go away, take a study break and look through these places that boast culture, adventure, social promise and most of all new beginnings for some amazing stories that only you can tell. Bruce Poon Tip, founder and CEO of G.A.P Adventures, lets us know why these places are as legendary in their stories as they are in real life.

1. Taj Mahal, India

“The greatest monument to love on Earth. The passion that inspired the pristine  structure, built so many centuries ago, left me in complete wonder. Even before  its construction, the Taj Mahal was designed to become an inspiring example of  beautiful architecture and remains so today, creating a powerful effect on  visitors from all backgrounds.”

 

 

 

2. Kampala, Uganda

“One of the ultimate African experiences is being able to explore the natural  habitat of the mountain gorillas; a rare pleasure and one that still leaves me  in complete awe. After a challenging trek through thick African jungle, our  group found ourselves in the company of a family of roaming gorillas. The trek  was led by experienced trackers who allowed us to get as close as possible to  the primates while constantly ensuring that we did not disturb their natural  thriving habitat.”

 

 

3. Pak Ou Caves, Laos

“These magnificent ancient caves, high above the Mekong River some 25 km from  Luang Prabang, have been a place of Buddhist worship and solitude for more than  600 years. Over that time, some 4,000 images of Buddha have been placed inside  them, creating a humbling place to ponder life’s great mysteries. The  opportunity to experience the tranquillity of these caves was something I will  personally always cherish.”

 

 

 

4. Galapagos Islands, Ecuador

“For as long as I can remember I have read about Darwin completing his research  on evolution on these curious islands,  so I was keen to explore them for myself. The location is still relatively  remote and left me powerless to do anything but relax and learn. The Galapagos  Islands are an experience rarely available to the modern day tourist and the  opportunity to explore a virtually untouched location inspires me to this day.”

 

 

 

5. Placencia, Belize

“This lost sandy peninsular in the south of Belize is another hidden gem that  remains undiscovered by mainstream tourists. Aside from a few lost backpackers,  it is a rare pleasure to relax with the villagers in total anonymity. More lost  islands are located just off the coast, which can be easily reached, and I would  highly recommend them to those who have extra time.”

 

 

 

6. Tikal, Guatemala

“The Mayans left behind a majestic city that always seems remarkably undisturbed  in the  middle of its tropical jungle setting. By imagining how the Mayans once  ruled this area of the world, it is easy to transport yourself back to a time of  ancient and savage civilisation.”

 

 

 

 

7. Ngorongoro Crater, Tanzania

“My journey through this lush wildlife playground in the middle of a dry open  desert in Africa left me wanting more. I witnessed rhino and baboons roaming  effortlessly and free against a stunning backdrop of the setting African sun. It  was a truly untouched experience, where I felt as if I was immersed in the land  itself.”

 

 

 

8. Angel Falls, Venezuela

“Angel Falls is one of the most spectacular waterfalls I have ever had the  pleasure of visiting, and is certainly the highest in the world. The overall  trip experience is heightened by the adventure one needs to endure to get there.  Travelling down wild riversby canoe and sleeping in hammocks along the riverside  makes it an unforgettable quest to find this spectacular natural wonder.”

 

 

9. Otavalo, Ecuador

“Every Saturday morning, the world’s largest craft market is brought to life with  a wash of vibrant colour as the Otavalo Indians come down from the hills to  market their wares. The electric energy in the air is captivating and puts you  in a mood to spend and take home a special memory of this unique place.”

 

 

 

 

10. Lhasa, Tibet

“At one time Tibet was the spiritual and cultural heart of Asia. While the people  of Tibet have had their struggles since the Cultural Revolution, their spirit  was still palpable as soon as we set foot in Lhasa. The Potala Palace sits  looming over the city as Buddhist monks passed by us on their daily routines,  reminding us that this city was once the pulse of a nation in change.”

 

 

 

-DB