One Day in Rio de Janeiro

Here’s a little snapshot I wanted to share where I am at the moment. Spending time home in quarantine isn’t easy. At least I have the beauty of the marvelous city of Rio de Janeiro to keep my morale up while I can’t continue traveling around the world. I decided to have a little fun today. I took pictures of the view from my window at different times to compare them together, to show how the beauty of this city changes through time. I am constantly blown away by Rio which never ceases to impress me year after year, every single day, every single hour. The pictures are taken from my Lagoa apartment rental I found to spend the quarantine, overlooking the Rodrigo de Freitas Lagoon. I took the first picture early in the morning at 7:00, where the sun wakes up from behind, lighting […]

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My Favorite Town in Cuba is… Trinidad!

Even better than Havana in my opinion, it is a perfect little picturesque and authentic village to spend two to three days while in Cuba. I felt transported back in the 19th century walking around its cobblestone streets and its colorful houses. The setup is just magical and nature as well. But be quick to come because I predict that its authenticity will disappear very soon as it is booming with construction at the moment. Hotels are popping everywhere and tourist traps will arrive soon after. If they say Cuba must be visited before it becomes developed, then Trinidad is to be number one on your bucket list. What should you do there? I enjoyed just walking around the old town. It’s so nice and feels so good to just observe how people are living. It just feels so colonial at the same time so […]

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Spending New Year’s Eve in Havana

I had long wanted to go back to Cuba since I first visited the island back in 2002. At the time, it was the typical all-inclusive hotel in Cayo Coco in the middle of the island so I couldn’t really say I had the real Cuban experience. Nevertheless, I remember I had been stung by the joy of the people of Cuba and since I this year I had the opportunity to go back, I thought to myself it could be a good experience to spend New year’s Eve in the country. Havana the capital of joy If we can call Havana the Capital of rum we can also pro probably call it the capital of cigars, salsa and even fun-loving people too. For me time in the city, I rented a one-week apartment in the old town of Havana which was a great way […]

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YEMEN – My 194th of 196 Country Visited – A One Week Expedition Across Socotra

Plunged into a Civil war since 2015, Yemen has been a difficult destination to visit on my quest to reach every one of the 196 countries of the world. I have been waiting for years to be able to go to Sana’a, the cultural capital of Yemen. But as I was planning to come in 2014, it became more and more dangerous for foreigners. It became too risky to make it to the country and soon after, the country fell into a never-ending war which is still raging strong at the time of writing this article. But even during wartime, there are always workarounds to enter a country. So how was it possible for me to spend a whole week in Yemen in 2019? The Secret was to go to Socotra, an island which is part of an archipelago of 4 islands located in the Arabian […]

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Piran, the Slovenian Jewel of the Adriatic Sea

Piran, also known as Pirano, it’s Italian name, shines as one of my favorite and most beautiful city on the Adriatic coast! After visiting Rovinj and choosing it as the most beautiful city of Croatia in a previous article, Piran is toe to toe with Rovinj, probably even more beautiful! No wonder Slovenia kept this tiny opening coast to the sea where Piran is located as part of their territory.   An example of Italian Gothic Architecture Piran is actually very small, just about 5000 inhabitants, but definitely boosts that amount to several thousand more during the peak summer season when all the tourists are around. Its reputation is quickly gaining some momentum and soon this tiny little town will be on everybody’s itinerary as it boasts some impressive character. Chinese tourist groups are already on the lookout as I’ve seen tons of them during […]

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Visiting The Magical Istrian Mountain Towns in Croatia

Though the Istrian Coast gather much of the fame for its pristine blue seas and beautiful Venetian towns, another side of Istria should not be missed while visiting the area. The Istrian interior, a mixture of rolling hills, fertile plains and pine forests with medieval hilltop villages is just as impressive and interesting, making a day or two visit an ideal way to gasp in the experience! If you are the kind of person who gets enchanted by Toscany style Plaines, the Istrian Interior is sure to impress you just as much.  Vineyard-dotted Hills and Medieval Towns The pace definitly slows down from the buzzing tourist lifestyle of the coast, but that’s actually a good thing! The main activity in this part of Croatia isn’t tourism as much, but rather wine-making, olive culture, asparagus harvesting and most importantly, truffle hunting (which you can actually take […]

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Canadian Newspaper LA PRESSE Publishes my Recommendations for Popular Destination Alternatives

For a third time, my travel recommendations were showcased in the Canadian Newspaper “La Presse”. The last time I was contacted by a journalist of the famous Canadian news outlet, I was asked to contribute to an article about Travel Recommendation for Top Destinations for Canadians in 2019. The article Can be found here. It was an interesting experience and gratifying since  I have always read this newspaper growing up in Canada. This time around, I was asked to contribute to an article about Travel alternatives to popular destinations around the world. This was an interesting choice of subject since I am the first to complain that some cities are being totally ruined by the insane amount of tourism that roam their streets. This uncontrollable inflow of tourism is good for the local economy, but as a world traveler, I now sadly avoid to stay […]

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Saudi Arabia (Country 193/196) – 1 Week Traveling between Jeddah and Riyadh

I had been waiting for years to figure out a way to reach Saudi Arabia on my quest to travel to every country of the world. Being one of the closest countries in the world, Saudi Arabia recently made a 180-degree shift of policy to open its doors in a bid to kick-start tourism in the country. Not only did they start issuing tourist visas for special events starting late 2018, but it also has plans to build a touristic city a little bit in the style of Qatar and Dubai in the middle of the desert, and is already starting to invite several countries to come since 2018. I took advantage of a recent event called Jeddah Seasons to finally being able to explore the Kingdom after years investigating all the possible ways to come. This marked my 193rd country visited out of the […]

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Exploring Niamey in Niger – An Example for African Development – (My 192nd of 196 Country Visited)

Back to French-speaking Africa this time in a west-African nation. It was the peak summer season in Niamey, known to be one of the hottest cities in the world, situated in the middle of the Sahara desert! We landed at night and as soon as the airplane doors opened, we felt a wave of dry hot air invade the interior… Just a preview to what I could expect the next few days, with a thermometer over 47 degrees during the day! In General, my expectations for Niger were totally off target from what I had heard and read through my pre-travel research. It was much better than I had imagined. And here’s why… One of the Poorest Nation in the world… Really? I was on my guard when arriving in Niger since I had read a report of the United Nations ranking Niger 189th out […]

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5 Days Traveling around SYRIA during War Times

As some of you read this article, it is important to time-stamp the events at the time of writing. As fighting is still raging in some areas, the war is coming to an end and the situation is changing rapidly. With the government now in control of the country once again, I expect the situation to improve very quickly through the next 2 years, and people reading this article 2 years from now might get a very different experience on their trip. But Make no mistake, as I was visiting in mid-may 2019, the country was still at war and heavy fighting was going on in the Idlib region and around Aleppo where I stayed 2 nights… Was it worth the risk? I Beleive it did, and here’s why… I decided to come to Syria as I believed it was the right time to come […]

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