Category Culture

UNESCO World Heritage Sites We’ve Got on Our Bucket List

by thehipmunk

These UNESCO World Heritage Sites have us itching to pack our bags and hit the road ASAP!

Iguaçu National Park

Why It’s Awesome: On the border of Argentina and Brazil, Iguaçu National Park is home to one of the world’s most impressive waterfalls. Let’s just say it makes Niagara Falls look like amateur hour.

Getting There: Take a 90-minute flight from Sao Paulo or a two hour flight from Rio de Janeiro.

Where to Stay: Book a hotel in Iguazú with views of the falls, like the Sheraton Iguazú Resort and Spa.

City of Bath

Why It’s Awesome: Bath is a reminder of just how far-reaching the Roman Empire once was. Here you’ll see ancient Roman baths built around natural hot springs...

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Make 2016 the year you discover Charleston

photo by CC user daveynin on Flickr

Looking to explore America this summer? Make this the year that you discover Charleston. A charming southern city that has stayed more or less the same since the Antebellum days, walking its streets are often an attraction in themselves.

If you are looking for a bit more to do than that. Be sure to add the following points of interest to your itinerary…

1) Stroll the City Market

With abundant fertile farmland surrounding Charleston, its no surprise that its City Market is the place to be on any given day.

With numerous gourmet food vendors, as well as many other artisans that deal in goods such as shoes, jewelry and the market’s signature craft (sweetgrass baskets), you’ll find it hard to leave the grounds without having made at least one impulse purchase.

2) Tour a plantation house

Despi...

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Exploring the cultural treasures of Egypt

photo by CC user Ricardo Liberato at liberato.org

Want to discover the cultural treasures of Egypt? Despite the fear in the media, foreign tourists that take proper common sense precautions will be safe here, and they will not have to contend with crowds at any of the following essential attractions in this country…

1) Pyramids at Giza

This attraction needn’t have any introduction, as it is THE cultural asset that people from around the globe associate with Egypt when its name is spoken in causal conversation. Standing up to the forces of man and nature for almost 5,000 years, the Pyramids of Giza is the last remaining wonder of the ancient world that still stands today.

Serving as a tomb for some of the oldest Pharaohs of Egyptian civilization, it is an attraction that is practically mandatory for visitors to Egypt...

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Experience Christmas in a different land this year

photo by CC user Keith Bacongco on Flickr

Want to experience Christmas in a different land this season? If you are looking to shake up your celebrations at the last minute, this post will give you some suggestions to make this dream happen for you and your family…

1) Germany

Home to the rapidly spreading concept of the Christmas market in other parts of the world, Germany has a holiday charm that cuts to core of its original origins.

The best market to visit is in Dresden, which first put together a festival based around the holiday season in 1435.

At this event and equally popular ones in places like Berlin and Munich, you’ll find traditional crafts, the irresistible aroma of spiced gingerbread, and tasty and dangerously addictive mugs of mulled wine.

The latter will warm you through, but do bundle up tight, as the temperature ...

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Cultural must see attractions in Beijing

photo by CC user Saperaud~commonswiki on wikimedia commons

Looking for some must see attractions in Beijing that show off its culture? Below, we go over 4 points of interest that will accomplish this goal…

1) The Forbidden City

Serving as the Chinese imperial headquarters for 500 years from the 15th to the 20th century, the Forbidden City is no longer off limits to outsiders or commoners, allowing you to see how the Chinese royals of yesteryear lived.

Covering 180 acres and consisting of just under 1,000 structures, the name of this massive historical site is an apt one, so be prepared to spend all day walking around to its various points of interest – don’t forget to wear comfortable shoes!

If you are in a hurry, spend your time in the Palace Museum, as its collection of vases and other priceless artifacts will give you much of the value that ...

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4 Reasons to Visit the Roman Catacombs

by thehipmunk

In ancient Rome, burial within the city walls was forbidden. The pagan culture of the second and third centuries preferred cremation, despite the objections of the Christian minority. As land for graveyards was scarce, the Christians of the day cultivated a sense of community away from the public eye by digging burial tunnels into the soft volcanic rock called tufo.

These ancient sites can now be found on the outskirts of the city, along major roadways and close to many Roman hotels. History buffs will find them a fascinating way to experience early Christian art, and to visit the resting places of numerous saints and martyrs.

St. Callixtus and St. Sebastian Catacombs

Both are located along Via Appia Antica and are reminders of religious persecution before Christianity was...

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Carry On with SF Ballet Principal Dancer Luke Ingham

By: Kelly Soderlund, Hipmunk Staff

South Australia-born dancer Luke Ingham trained at the Australian Ballet School and performed with the Australian Ballet and the Houston Ballet before joining the San Francisco Ballet as a soloist in 2012. Ingham was promoted to Principal Dancer in 2014, and has danced many soloist and principal roles for SF Ballet, including Tomasson’s Nutcracker*. We asked the globe-trotting Ingham to take a quick break from dancing and and chat about his travel habits, tips, his favorite cities to visit, and the items he can’t travel without.


InghramHipmunk: So, tell us. What’s in your carry-on?

Luke Ingham: If I’m on a long-haul flight, I always bring Peanut M&M’s. Definitely a book in case entertainment fails...

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Best countries to visit for art lovers

photo by CC user Guache on Flickr

If one of the things that you look forward to the most when traveling is seeing how different cultures express their innermost thoughts on canvas, then you will enjoy today’s post.

Below, we will reveal the best countries to visit for art lovers. From the grittiness of Colombia, to the Old World classics of Italy, there is much to love about the countries on this list…

1) Italy

A serious discussion on the best art destinations in the world simply can not be had without mentioning Italy first.

Home to some of the most creative minds in history, cities like Florence stand out, as being home to Michelangelo’s David (Galleria dell’ Accademia) and some of the finest pieces from Raphael and Rembrandt (Galleria degli Uffizi) has put it firmly on the global art map.

The Eternal City is a must ...

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