One of Sri Lanka’s most iconic sights is the Nine Arch Bridge in the small mountain town of Ella. This viewpoint offers spectacular panoramas of the surrounding area, which is made up of verdant greenery and tea fields. Visitors can watch trains roll over the bridge as they make their way along the Demodara Loop. Constructed in the early days of the railway expansion in Sri Lanka, the bridge is particularly impressive because it is made of cement, stone and brick, without the use of any steel. Mihintale is a mountain near the town of Anuradhapura. Its summit has much spiritual significance to the Buddhist community. It’s believed that on this mountain top a Buddhist monk named Mahinda met King Devanampiyatissa and together this meeting introduced Buddhism to the country. Monk Mahinda impressed the King with the peacefulness of the Buddhist doctrine and his contented, serene nature. The King subsequently renounced war, and went on to spread peace throughout the nation. There are several impressive religious and historical structures on and around Mihintale Mountain. Hundreds of pilgrims visit the site each year.
Nepal is a a fabulous place if you are searching for adventure and ancient history feeling. The Bodhanath Stupa, just outside of Kathmandu, is one of the largest stupas of its kind in the world, and dates to sometime around the 6th century, possibly even earlier. Like Bhaktapur, it lies on the old trade route to Tibet and is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The stupa sustained minor damage during the 2015 earthquake but is otherwise in good condition. The stupa itself is a symbol of enlightenment but at Boudhanath the symbolism is particularly clear. Each different shape represents one of the five elements, earth, water, fire, air, and sphere, which are also the attributes of the five Buddhas. Brought together in the form of the stupa, their unity reflects in abstract fashion the structure of the universe itself.
Get Upgraded in the best hotels around the globe. To get to San Blas you’ve got four options. You can fly from Panama straight into the San Blas Islands, take a sailing boat from Cartagena, take a speedboat from Capurganá, or take the bus from Panama City. Most backpackers travelling between Colombia and Panama choose one of these options. For a good reason: Travelling over the land border, known as the ‘Darien Gap’, can be very dangerous . This is a popular drug trafficking route out of Colombia to Panama and is not safe (plus it’s just untamed jungle the whole way!). The people in your group will make it what it is. That’s a fact that you can’t change.But the chances are that most of the people you will meet on these types of trips are open minded, interesting and willing to get to know you. So don’t worry about that too much and just look forward to meeting them. Below you can see the image of our group – representing 7 nationalities: English, German, Chilean, Dutch, Canadian, French and the US.
Thailand is a a fascinating location if you are looking for adventure and ancient history feeling. Krabi province is home to some of Thailand’s most famous beach destinations, and Railay is the cream of the crop. Widely considered one of the best beaches in the country, Railay delivers on promises of white sand beaches, clear blue water, and a feeling that you’ve found a slice of paradise. You have to take a boat to reach the island getaway, with services available from Krabi town and Ao Nang. The beaches are the main reason to visit Railay, but it’s also a rock-climbing hotspot. Railay’s karst peaks draw adventurers both experienced and novice to try their hand at climbing the towering limestone cliffs. Among the many other active things to do, you can go elephant trekking, whitewater rafting, kayaking, and snorkeling, or take on some lighter options such as cooking classes and indulging in a massage. There’s also the tourist-friendly Diamond Cave, with a convenient walkway to accommodate curious visitors looking to do some exploring between stretches of sunbathing.
Indonesia is an incredible location, so much colour, a must see. The Gili Islands are a major draw in Lombok, which has risen in popularity among backpackers and tourists in recent years. These picturesque islands offer beaches that rival those of Bali in their beauty, as well as opportunities for diving and even snorkeling at a turtle sanctuary. If you’re looking for more turtle action, you can check out a turtle hatchery where hundreds of these creatures are born each year. Kayaking is also popular in the Gilis, and if you’re seeking a place to reconnect with your mind and body, you will find several options for yoga classes. The Gili Islands provide a more relaxed, though still stimulating, alternative to popular Bali.
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