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Ancient Walled Cities You Must See

Epic walled cities You Must See
Photo Credit: Wikipedia

I’ve been to almost 50 countries around the world, and while I’ve liked most of the villages, towns, and cities I’ve been to, the ones that are surrounded by walls are my favorites. They always have a lot of interesting history. After all, they were walled in because both the country that owned the city and the ones who wanted to take it over thought they were important for strategy. When you explore a walled city, you’re sure to have an amazing time because you never know what treasures you’ll find. So, with that in mind, here are six walled cities you should put on your list of places to visit.

Dubrovnik, Croatia

Dubrovnik, Croatia
Photo Credit: AFAR Magazine

This city isn’t known as the “Pearl of the Adriatic” for nothing. Star Wars and Game of Thrones both filmed sequences at this Croatian beauty, which is situated along a beach. When you look at the walls and fortifications, which were built about 1,000 years ago, you’d think they’d crumble into the sea, but they’re still there. The city was once powerful enough to compete with Venice as a maritime commerce hub. When you visit today, you can stay in world-class resorts and hotels, as well as economical, pleasant hostels. Enjoy some fresh seafood while sipping a delicious cup of coffee!

Timbuktu, Mali

Timbuktu, Mali
Photo Credit: Medium

People often think that Timbuktu is a mythical place like the Lost City of Atlantis or the Seven Cities of Gold. This may be because of the famous saying “from here to Timbuktu.” But whether you believe it or not, it is a real city! It is in the country of Mali, which is in West Africa. It was built in the 13th century as a trading post. But it wasn’t until about 300 years later that the famous walls were built. Even though it is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, rebels destroyed a lot of its ancient shrines and treasures in 2012. At the moment, both the UK and the US tell their citizens not to go to Mali, but it will be worth the wait when peace comes.

Khiva, Uzbekistan

Khiva, Uzbekistan
Photo Credit: 123RF

This former Soviet Republic was very hard to get into for most of its 30 years as a free country. But these days, most people from the West can go there without a visa. When you go to Uzbekistan, you have no reason not to go to Khiva. Its inner town, Itchan Kala, was walled off for the first time in the 10th century to keep out invaders. Because of this, the ancient monuments inside are still in good shape after more than a thousand years. The houses aren’t as old, with the best-preserved ones only being from the 1800s.

Carcassonne, France

Carcassonne, France
Photo Credit: Wikipedia

Carcassonne is a must-see for history fans. It is in the province of Languedoc in the south of France. Visigoths built the city 1,600 years ago, and the Romans fortified it. Despite being so old, the city is in great shape. It is a UNESCO World Heritage Site because it makes sense. Do you want to find towers? Drawbridges? Battlements? Castles? Carcassonne will take care of you! You have to walk along with the River Aude when you go there. Nearby, there are lots of cute villages, great food, and lots of things to do. Why don’t you rent a bike and spend the day seeing everything?

Toledo, Spain

Toledo, Spain
Photo Credit: Flickr

During the Moorish conquest, many of Spain’s most important towns and cities were protected by walls to keep out the invaders. After a few hundred years, only a few pieces of the walls still stand. But Toledo, which was the capital of the Visigoths and was once the capital of the powerful Spanish Empire before they moved it to Madrid, kept almost all of its walls. Toledo is often forgotten by tourists, for whatever reason. Maybe because it reminds them of the very dull town of Toledo, Ohio? More likely, it is just overshadowed by cities like Madrid, Barcelona, Valencia, and Seville, which have already been mentioned. Toledo is one of a kind because it still shows signs of its Islamic, Jewish, and Christian pasts.

York, England

York, England
Photo Credit: Savills

England must be mentioned in any article about walled cities from the Middle Ages. Even though there are a lot of towns and cities in the UK with walls and ramparts that date back to the Roman Empire, York is the best of them all. The walls here were built between the 12th and 14th centuries and kept those scary Vikings away. There are 34 watchtowers, four very impressive gates, and a wall that goes around 2.5 miles. You can’t enjoy the town without going to York Minster, either.

Best Cameras for Travel You will Get Ideas Before Purchase

Canon Camera
Photo Credit: Wallpaperaccess

It’s difficult to walk the narrow line between overpacking and forgetting to bring stuff on vacation, as anybody who has had to sit on their bag to seal it knows. You should always make sure you have the necessities, but no one wants to be forced to throw items away at the airport gate because their luggage is too heavy.

One thing you do need to switch up your clothing, even if it means buying another pair of shoes? A camera to keep track of your travel memories (and OOTDs). However, unless you’re a professional Youtuber or National Geographic photographer, you’re unlikely to want to carry a heavy-duty model or a body that requires five different lenses for each topic. A fragile camera that demands cautious packing and gentle handling isn’t worth the bother if you’re not part of a filmmaking crew traveling for work.

What matters most is that you enjoy your trip; a camera that interferes with this defeats its purpose. However, you don’t want to buy five disposable cameras and take pictures of all the wonderful moments, just to return home and develop five rolls of hazy, underexposed film. So, what should you think about while selecting a camera for your trip?

Should you even bring a camera?

You probably intend to if you clicked on this article. Consider your phone camera for a moment – if you have a smartphone, it most likely has a camera with impressive photography capabilities of its own. The newer the model, the more likely it is that consumers desire to capture daily experiences in high definition. Is there any purpose to carry an extra camera if you have the latest iPhone, Samsung Galaxy, or Xiaomi model?

It all depends. Are you planning a trip to the beach and want to shoot some cool underwater shots without risking water damage? Is this a ski vacation or an active activity that necessitates additional image stabilization? Or would you want to keep your phone safe in your purse at all times so that you don’t drop it while shooting photos?

If you want to bring a camera on vacation for whatever purpose (even if it’s only to take better photos for Instagram), you should consider the following factors:

Technical Requirements:

Size/Weight:

It’s pointless to spend money on a professional model that won’t fit in your luggage. Make sure your selection isn’t too heavy for you to carry around with you.

Image Resolution:

This is the first thought that comes to mind, and it is most likely the driving force behind your desire to travel with a camera. Anyone can find a dark, fuzzy photo of the Eiffel Tower on the internet, but you want a crystal-clear portrait mode snap of yourself in front of it.

Zoom Levels:

Despite huge developments in smartphone photography technology, your devices will still fall short in this area when compared to more powerful cameras with zoom lenses. Make sure your camera has a good optical zoom — the digital zoom is something you can adjust later.

Compatibility:

Do you like to see your photos at the conclusion of each day rather than waiting until the end of your vacation to have them developed? Then you’ll need a digital camera, as well as a compatible device to view your photos on and a connecting cord.

Modes of Photography:

One of the major advantages of carrying a camera is its versatility: from drones for aerial photos to camcorders for video quality, different gadgets provide different advantages above your normal phone camera.

Price:

Above all, don’t spend more than you can afford. Budgeting for vacation entails planning for the items you’ll need to prepare for your trip – look at your cash and decide how much of it you want to put toward a new camera.

OLYMPUS Tough TG-6 Waterproof Camera

Specs

  • Type: Ultracompact
  • Zoom: Up to 8x or 44x in Microscope Control Mode
  • Continuous Shooting Speed: 20fps
  • Image File Format: JPEG, Raw
  • Max Video Resolution: 4k
  • Megapixels: 12MP
  • Sensor: 1/2.3″
  • Lens: 25-100mm (equiv.) f/2.0-4.9
  • Weight: 0.56 lbs

This camera is dust-proof, waterproof, shock-proof, crush-proof, freeze-proof, and fog-proof, and it may just outlast you. Because the Olympus Tough TG-6 will live through many adventures, pass it on to your children or something. It’s not just tough as nails, but it also has a variable macro system for high-definition close-up images. Its ability to catch the tiniest details on a flower petal has been praised by users.

One potential negative is the battery life – in principle, it should last 340 shots before needing to be recharged, but GPS and wifi capabilities reduce that number, and some users have discovered that they need to bring a power bank on excursions (luckily, it’s easy to recharge via USB cable). The maximum video recording period is also only 20 seconds, therefore this is primarily a snapshot camera.

DJI Mavic Mini 2

Specs

  • Type: Drone
  • Zoom: 4K: 2x; 2.7K: 3x; FHD: 4x
  • Continuous Shooting Speed: 4K: 30fps; 2.7K: 60fps; FHD: 60fps
  • Image File Format: JPEG/DNG, MP4
  • Max Video Resolution: 4K
  • Megapixels: 12MP
  • Sensor: 1/2.3″
  • Lens: 35 mm (equiv.) f/2.8
  • Weight: <249g

Bringing a drone along on a trip elevates travel footage like nothing else – whether you’re visiting a huge city or a natural refuge, there’s always a magnificent overhead perspective to be captured. You’ll understand what we’re talking about if you’ve ever seen those epic tracking shots of a solitary car rushing down a desert road, or a panoramic overview of a cityscape at night, or a zoom-out film of the waves breaking on a beach. Drone photographs are unlike any other, allowing you to enjoy the scope of the new destination you’re seeing while also allowing you to show it off to your friends later.

And when it comes to drones, DJI has virtually no competition. The industry leader makes drones for both consumer and industrial use, so they know what they’re doing. While all of their consumer models have superb cameras, the Mini 2 stands out because of its portability. It’s made to be under 250 grams, which is the minimum weight required for FAA registration (a pain at the best of times). This means that, depending on your destination, you may not require a license to fly your drone. Most nations, including the United States, Canada, and the United Kingdom, adhere to the 250g restriction, but verify your destination’s regulations beforehand. Drone flights are not permitted in some places, such as US national parks, without prior authorisation.

Canon EOS 6D Mark II

Specs

  • Type: DSLR
  • Zoom: Depends on lens
  • Continuous Shooting Speed: 6.5fps
  • Image File Format : JPEG, Raw
  • Max Video Resolution: 1080p
  • Megapixels: 26.2MP
  • Sensor: Full-frame CMOS
  • Lens: Interchangeable (comes with EF 24-105mm IS STM Lens)
  • Weight: 1.69 lbs

The Canon EOS 6D was already a fantastic camera that beginners learned to use and professionals carried with them on assignments. Its Mark II improvement includes an articulating screen, which may appear insignificant but can make all the difference. If you want a shot from a higher vantage point, you can tilt the screen down to see what you’re shooting rather than raising your arm, hitting the shutter blind, and praying for the best. It’s also terrific for selfies, which is a lifesaver if you’re traveling alone or with just one other person — no need for one person to stand in the frame while the other sets the self-timer and sprints. (The screen is also a touchscreen, which helps with focusing.)

The autofocus system has also been improved: although the original 6D had just 11 focus points and only one cross-type (perpendicular sensors allowing for two-dimensional sensing) point, the Mark II has 45 points, all of which are cross-type. That means the 6D Mark II’s autofocus will lock on to anything lightning quick and with pinpoint accuracy.

The sensor is *chef’s kiss*, as befits a full-frame Canon DSLR. It’s image quality that you’d take to your sister’s wedding, even professional levels, so she can save money on a wedding photographer. She might still want one, though, because the 6D Mark II can detect even the tiniest pores. Although it is costly, you get what you pay for.

iPhone 13 Pro

Specs

  • Type: Phone
  • Zoom: 6x
  • Continuous Shooting Speed: 10fps
  • Image File Format : HEIC
  • Max Video Resolution : 4K
  • Megapixels: 12MP
  • Sensor: 1/1.9″
  • Lens: Ultra Wide: 13mm f/1.8; Telephoto: 77 mm f/2.8; Wide: 26 mm f/1.5
  • Weight: 204g

It can be difficult to determine whether or not to upgrade given how frequently Apple releases new products; the same can be said with other devices if you haven’t sold your soul to the Apple ecosystem. And, honestly, if your old phone is still working, you can probably skip a generation or three of new iPhones. However, if you’re in the market for a new camera for travel, it’s worth considering the iPhone 13 Pro, which includes all of the aforementioned features as well as an updated camera.

The iPhone 13 Pro will be released in 2021, and it is Apple’s best phone yet in almost every way (only the smaller size of the iPhone 13 Pro Max, which boasts the same make in a 6.7″ package). Aside from the usual CPU and battery life improvements, the camera improvements and add-ons were a strong selling point for the 13 Pro.

The phone’s Ultra Wide camera allows for macro photography (with macro videos in slow-motion and time-lapse as well). The Telephoto camera produces breathtaking photos that you can personalize with bokeh and lighting adjustments. All three cameras have better low-light capabilities, including low-light portrait mode and improved autofocus, as well as Night Mode. Apple’s neural image processing network, Deep Fusion, analyzes pixels to produce the best final image. And Cinematic mode adds transitions and focus automatically, which you can tweak after the fact – giving you unmatched (in smartphones) depth of field flexibility after the fact.

Australia Ban on Cruise Ships Comes to an End after 2 Years

Australia-Sydney
Photo: Pixabay

Australia’s two-year cruise ship embargo comes to an end on Sunday, marking another step toward restoring tourism after the pandemic’s devastation.

The Cruise Lines International Association estimates that the ban on foreign cruise ships, which was enforced in March 2020 after a Covid outbreak aboard the Ruby Princess spilled into Sydney once the ship docked, cost the Australian economy more than A$10 billion ($7.4 billion).

Operators are “preparing for a carefully regulated restart of activities in a sector that formerly supported over 18,000 Australian employment,” according to a statement released by the group ahead of the ban’s expiration.

After the federal ban expires, the states will decide when vessels can enter. Vaccination regulations for workers and passengers over the age of 12 are in place, as are mask and Covid-testing protocols.

The Pacific Explorer, operated by P&O Cruises Australia, will be one of the first ships to dock in Sydney Harbour on Monday, ahead of its resumption to service at the end of May.

According to official estimates, 1.6 million cruise passengers visited Sydney in 2017 and 2018. Following high-profile outbreaks that caused a number of ports to close their doors, the pandemic impacted cruise ships particularly severely.

Tourism industry groups claim that there is enormous unmet demand for cruises, but it’s uncertain whether the disease’s dread will have a long-term impact on the business. Global travel stocks have failed to make much ground lost owing to the pandemic, and have lagged behind global equities since the start of 2020.

This year, Australia loosened border restrictions, relying on strong vaccination rates as part of a coronavirus-learning plan.

6 Ancient International Beach Destinations

Ancient International Beach Destinations
Photo is taken from Internet

Longing for 6 Ancient International Beach Destinations. We’ve compiled a list of the best places to escape the heat now that travel restrictions throughout the world have been eased.

Breathtakingly beautiful

As Malaysia enters the endemic stage of Covid-19 on April 1, the country is prepared to receive fully vaccinated tourists. There are 99 islands in the Langkawi archipelago, which is 30 kilometers off the coast of northwestern Malaysia. The Andaman Sea encircles the island, which is home to scenic paddy fields, forested hills, and serene waterfalls of different kinds. The swaying coconut trees and powder-fine sand on the beach are a sight to behold. Visit Malaysia’s most popular island and take in the sights and sounds of landmark structures, gorgeous scenery, delicious food, and stunning views. Attractions like the Langkawi Sky Bridge and Gunung Raya Cable Car. Shweta Rajpal, a travel blogger, adds, “Not to mention the black sand beach.

A tropical paradise

My trip to the Maldives was the ultimate joy, from their amazing hospitality to activities like snorkeling, scuba diving, and the sunset cruise they have it all covered for the thrill-seeker in you. It is every traveler’s dream come true and one spot that should be on your bucket list for sure,” adds Avantika Mohan. Adorned with brilliant coral, one can engage in diving as well as snorkeling and experience the secret world of underwater organisms at the Banana Reef. Surrounded by tropical flowers and trees, Sun Island also allows one to enjoy walks on the sandy beaches, and spend some much-needed personal time with nature. Fishing, dolphin sightings, and snorkeling at Rangali Island is a must.

Idyllic beauty

Pre-travel testing requirements for international arrivals have been abolished by Thailand’s Centre for Covid-19 Situation Administration (CCSA). Pattaya, a city on Thailand’s eastern Gulf coast, is a tourist’s dream with pristine beaches, nature reserves, rustic countryside, cities with gorgeous temples, wonderful food, and active nightlife. “Jomtien Beach, barely 4 kilometers from the city center, is known for its spectacular sunsets,” adds travel blogger Bhumika Thakkar. Celebrity wedding photographer Megha Israni states that at Railay beach, “you may enjoy rock climbing, snorkeling, diving, white water rafting, sea kayaking, or jungle trekking.

Gorgeous landscapes and rich culture

By mid-February, infection rates had dropped by 90% daily, and Indonesia was ready to remove the two-year border ban by eliminating all quarantine requirements for travelers who were fully immunized with the disease. On Bali, you’ll find everything from hiking trails and beaches to breathtaking waterfalls and lush woods. This Indonesian archipelago has a seemingly endless number of beautiful beaches, making it an ideal choice for a vacation.

In addition to the natural beauty of the surrounding cliffs and beaches, there are also numerous opportunities for water sports and diving. Learn to surf in Bali’s most popular surfing sites, or hire a board and get out on the water. Travel blogger Nivi Selvaraj says, “Jump off the cliffs and tumble down an actual water slide at Aling-Aling Waterfall, or experience sophisticated manmade slopes at the waterpark.” There are mountains, lakes, waterfalls, rice paddies, and flower beds on the island, as well as sacred rivers and hidden valleys, all of which make up the island’s landscape. Many of the island’s traditional cultural practices are still carried out. Visit Uluwatu Temple and see the sunrise from the top of Mount Batur, then stay for a cultural performance in the evening.

Unmissable sights

For properly vaccinated tourists, the Sri Lankan government has waived all quarantine regulations in November 2021, enticing tourists to visit the island state. Galle, a city on Sri Lanka’s southwest coast, is popular among Indian tourists. The Galle Fort, erected by the Portuguese in the 16th century, is a Unesco World Heritage Site. It has windswept beaches, Dutch colonial buildings, ancient mosques and churches, grand mansions, and museums that transport you back in time. At about 4 or 5 miles south of Galle, Unawatuna, Sri Lanka’s most popular tourist destination, has a wide bay with smooth, golden sands.

A paradise

Beautiful and diversified, Malta is a must-see island. As a popular tourist attraction, it remains mostly untouched by the outside world.” Whether you’re looking for a quiet getaway or a chance to experience the island’s history, culture, and food, Malta provides something for everyone.