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Bali ‘the island of Gods’

Bali, the ‘island of Gods’, is one of more than 14,000 isles in the Indonesian archipelago, is inhabited by warm and friendly people with a distinct Hindu culture and exudes a charm and beauty that is truly unique. From its majestic volcanoes, breathtaking rice terraces, ancient palaces and temples in the hinterland to the stunning […]

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The Monastery

Enchanting spots: Petra, Jordan

The ancient city of Petra , located deep in the mountains of southern Jordan, is an awe-inspiring monument to mankind’s ingenuity and craftmanship. The city, a UNESCO World Heritage Site and one of the new seven wonders of the world, is situated in a basin and was carved out of the rose-red stone of the surrounding […]

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Sabah: a nature lover’s paradise

This spectacular corner of Malaysia occupies the northern fringe of the island of Borneo and is blessed with superb white sandy beaches and coral islands and large tracts of virgin tropical rainforests. Sabah is also the home of Mount Kinabalu, at 4,095 meters, the highest peak in Southeast Asia; the orang utans; and some of […]

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Sangye's cooking class

Lessons Learned in Sangye’s Kitchen

A guest post by Jessica O. Before visiting the seat of the Tibetan government in exile, I knew very little about Tibet, other than the Beastie Boys wanted to ‘free it’. That changed the moment I started wandering the streets of McLeod Ganj, the backpacker enclave 8 kilometres away from Dharamsala, India. While retaining its […]

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Enchanting spots: Tikal, Guatemala

Situated deep in the jungles of northern Guatemala, Tikal is the largest of the ruined cities of the splendorous Maya civilisation. This ancient city with its breathtaking pyramids (some of which are higher than 60 meters!), temples, palaces and monuments reached its epitome in the 1st century AD but can trace its roots back to […]

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A Kaleidoscope of Colour

Imagine thick blankets made of billions of flowers laid over the mountain slopes and valleys that stretch till the horizon, with an astounding spectrum of colours. Experience this magnificent natural phenomenon in South Africa during the explosion of spring blooms in the region that encompasses the Western and Northern Cape provinces. If you’re in Cape […]

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Mystical Rapa Nui

Mystical Rapa Nui A page from my Travel Journal I don’t think I’ve ever been to a place as isolated as Easter Island, or Rapa Nui as it’s called by the locals. It was quite amusing seeing our flight path from Tahiti – it was literally from one dot to another and the rest of […]

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Luxury North and South

My dear friend Janice Waugh recently went on a trip by train from Chicago to New Orleans. She wrote a series of fascinating articles documenting her experiences and observations which have been published on the Solo Traveler blog. Janice kindly offered to share some of her insights gained during this trip on the Velvet Escape […]

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The thousands of seals on Dyer Island

The marine life of the Western Cape

The Western Cape of South Africa is a popular region in the spring/summer seasons to watch whales and other marine life in their natural environs. Hermanus, about a two-hour drive east of Cape Town and close to the southernmost tip of the African continent, is a great place to start for whale-watching activities but there […]

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Charming Antigua

La Antigua, or just Antigua, is a resplendent city in the Western Highlands of Guatemala. Proclaimed a UNESCO World Heritage Site and often touted as the most beautiful city in the Maya region, Antigua is home to a stunning array of Spanish (colonial) baroque architecture, colourful churches, bustling markets, cobble-stoned streets and charming squares. The […]

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