If seeing elephants in the wild is on your list of travel goals, you’ll be able to tick it off after a trip to Sri Lanka, as over 600 roam around Udawalawe National Park. And make time to visit the Elephant Transit Home, the park’s baby elephant orphanage. Don’t forget the sandy beaches, tea plantations, and Buddhist temples either. Head to Kandy to see the Temple of the Sacred Tooth, one of Sri Lanka’s most revered ancient places of worship, or pitch up on the ice-white sands of Unawatuna beach
The world’s tallest building, giant shopping malls, and glamorous hotels – Dubai is the definition of lavish. But it has another, more traditional side that’s less well known. Away from the glitz of downtown Dubai, spot the souks, galleries, and cafes in the Al Fahidi Historical Neighbourhood. Culture vultures will also relish the opportunity to take guided tours of mosques, barter with local traders, and experience a side of Dubai not often seen.
Home to Valletta, the 2018 European Capital of Culture, Malta has numerous historical sites, an up-and-coming party scene, and rugged coastline. Water babies will find more than enough sites around the island to keep them busy, with activities like diving and snorkelling to try. Better still, it’s an ever-changing landscape – when the Azure Window, a central tourist attraction on nearby Gozo, collapsed in 2017 the natural rock formation gifted divers with a brand-new site to spot tropical fish in.
Whether you’re looking for a chaotic, buzzing city or a laid back beach break for your next trip, you’ll find it in Vietnam. Head to Ho Chi Minh City for rooftop bars, fascinating history, and great eats. Or kick back in Phu Quoc with a coconut at a beach bar, as this island is all about relaxation. And then there’s Ha Long Bay – home to gleaming emerald waters and limestone rock formations topped with thriving rainforests. Locals refer to it as ‘where the dragon descends into the sea’, in reference to the legend that the bay was created by dragons.
Known as the ‘Big Easy’, New Orleans is a city brimming with culture, history, and some of the best food you’ll eat in the United States. The birthplace of jazz music and the home of Mardi Gras, you’ll never be far from a party, or a honky-tonk full of talented musicians. And, don’t forget to explore the city’s superstitious side at the Historic Voodoo Museum, one of the world’s only museums dedicated to the art.
Daredevils flock to Costa Rica for some of the best ziplining in the world, while nature lovers are drawn by the lush wildlife. Spot over half a million different species living within the rainforests, mountains, and rivers across Costa Rica, or take a break from hiking and lounge under palm trees in temperatures hovering over 25°C year round.
The Riu Sri Lanka boasts an excellent beachfront location, modern rooms and a fantastic dining scene.
At Wyndham Esplendor Tamarindo, you can take your pick from the pool, the spa, or the local beach club. If you want to explore further, hop on the free shuttle bus and visit the local town of Tamarindo.
Popular Hotel Waterfront stands right on Sliema's seafront with coastal buses stopping right on its doorstep. It also has a rooftop pool offering spectacular harbour views of the capital, Valletta.
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