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  • Uncommon Journeys

Ten Consummate Travel Experiences

Statistics show that 85% of travelers go someplace they've already been.

Ready for a break from the familiar?

Eager to try something new?

Here are 10 consummate travel experiences that amaze us, inspire us and enrich our lives.

Breakfast in Burma

This is, hands down, our favorite thing in the world. What makes it so special? Exotic settings in dew-covered gardens. Attentive but unobtrusive hospitality. Organic foods, freshly harvested and eaten so close to the source. Sunrise casting promise on a new day of discovery. The intangible feeling of waking up in Burma. It can’t be described. It must be experienced.

Dallol, Ethiopia

If ever a place left us jaw in hand, spellbound, speechless, stunned and amazed, that place is Dallol. What could we possibly love about the hottest inhabited corner of the world, which National Geographic dubbed “the cruelest place on earth”? We’ve taken thousands of photos of the geothermal fields but they don’t do justice. We’ve tried to write about the salt extraction village and camel caravans, but they just can’t be adequately described. Dallol defies the maxim that “seeing is believing.”

La Paz, Bolivia by Cable Car

This is a spectacular perspective of “the city that touches the clouds,” so chock-full of wonderment, quirky beauty and surprises, that you must see it to believe it. Then again, we’ve see it many times, and still can’t believe that such enchantment exists.

Predjama Castle, Slovenia

Predjama Castle stands as a magnificent,defiant testament to a 13th century feudal society ruled by super-powerful landowners, warlords and dynasties. It is a fairy tale world where human ingenuity meets nature’s wonders. Perched on a towering cliff, built directly into the rocky face, it was considered impenetrable until its most infamous resident, robber baron Erasmus Lueger, met an untimely and most undignified death. A cannonball hit the castle privy when he happened to be squatting inside.

Paung Daw Oo Festival, Inle Lake, Myanmar

Every October, beginning on the fifth waxing moon day, Buddhist pilgrims flock to Inle Lake to pay homage to the Phaung Daw Oo Buddhas. The festivities include processions of dozens of canoes, each containing no fewer than twenty perfectly aligned, perfectly balanced leg rowers in all their agile splendor. They propel themselves forward in unison with such steady, graceful, fluid rhythm, that they might be performing an exotic, highly stylized ballet.

Semien Mountain Range, Ethiopia

Of this majestic, biodiverse geographical marvel, Rosita Forbes once wrote, "A thousand thousand years ago the old gods must have played chess with those stupendous crags, for we saw bishops, castles, an emerald knight, and far, far away a king, crowned with sapphire and guarded by a row of pawns." How can you resist?

Dinner at Gustu, La Paz, Bolivia

According to Food & Wine Magazine, food is the number one reason that 75 percent of travelers visit new destinations. If you’re in the majority of food-obsessed travelers, Gustu is not to be missed. They use exclusively local products to promote awareness of Bolivian flavors and food heritage, and to support sustainable socio-economic progress. This might well be the most delectable and innovative culinary experience of your life.

Dinner at Penzion Berc, Bled, Slovenia

Rooted in Slovenian tradition, this restaurant has it all: quaint, rustic ambience; local ingredients, expertly prepared by talented chefs; and impeccable service. Bon appétit!

Timket in Ethiopia

If you’re captivated by religious pageantry, Timket in Ethiopia is for you! Prepare to be transfixed as priests bearing sacred icons converge onto the ceremonial grounds for a confluence of holy mass, chanting, drumming, kinetic dancing and trilling ululations.

Uyuni Salt Flats, Bolivia

This largest salt flat in the world attests to the lake that existed 40,000 years ago. Linda Xiao aptly described it

as “an enchanting, breathtaking, blissfully beautiful, vibrant, awesome, eerie force of nature." And that's not all! Uyuni, once a bustling railway and mining distribution hub, is now home to a “train graveyard.” It’s the ultimate fantasy for hobos and dreamers, where rusted steam locomotives have been abandoned, shunted aside and left to the mercy of the elements.

For these and other consummate travel experiences, please visit

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