Top Three Places in the World

Discussion in 'Et Cetera, Et Cetera' started by exwhyzee, May 26, 2008.

  1. exwhyzee

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    I've always been impressed with the diversity of nationalities and localities represented on LPSG. I dream of embarking on a world tour and visit all the friends I've made on here...but that's another thread! :rolleyes:

    In your personal travels, both domestic (native country) and abroad (other countries), what are your top three places...and why are they your favorites? Maybe you can inspire a few of your fellow posters to take a vacation in your pre-approved spot!

    For me:
    1. Bondi Beach, Sydney, Australia - I loved this because it epitomizes the Aussie lifestyle with bright sunshine, friendly faces, a sandy beach all within a bus ride from central Sydney. I still recall having breakfast overlooking the main commercial drag one Monday morning...no hurry, very civil and relaxed.

    2. Colonia del Sacramento, Uruguay - This is a World Heritage Listed town that was established by the Spanish in 1680. It still has its old protective walls, moat, and drawbridge; a lighthouse; windmill; cathedral; and Plaza Major (where I took a short siesta). On top of the history and architecture, it has some of the best seafood and helado (ice cream) I've ever had.

    3. Zermatt - I visited here when I was 16, and it features the iconic Matterhorn peak that you can see from almost any street. Aside from the village, I took a solo trip up a railway to the top of the Gornergrat, a 3,000m mountain overlooking the town, the Matterhorn, and a glacier. I was so horny that day I found a private place and wacked off!

    Anyone else have some favorite places? :cool: I'm checking airfares as you type!
     
  2. D_Roland_D_Hay

    D_Roland_D_Hay Account Disabled

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    Some of my favorite places are:

    1. Cusco, Peru...I spent a couple of weeks roaming around Peru and was amazed by Machu Pichu and the city of Cusco. I had a great time as the people were very friendly, the food excellent and Machu Pichu very spiritual. Great time!

    2. Isla Bastimentos-Playa Wizard, Panama...some of the best surfing that I have ever experienced. Very remote, beautiful and pure.

    3. Anywhere in the Caribbean with a drink in hand and a chair on the beach!
     
  3. naughty

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    Workin' up a good pot of mad!
    WIthin my somewhat limited travel history the three places that have stood out the most for me have been:


    1)Peggy's Cove, Nova Scotia

    I fell in love with the rocks on the beach. THough I havent been there for many years I will never forget the sheer beauty of that spot on the map.


    2) Puget Sound, Washington

    I was there for a potlatch of all things and I thought I had died and almost gone to heaven. I had never in my life experienced anything as sinfully decadent as succulent alder smoked salmon. WHen I came back to Seattle I went directly to Pike Street Market and bought ruby red salmon jerky till the cows came home.

    3) The Vielle Carre, New Orleans ,LA

    THe French quarter was absolutely stunning and nothing like what I expected. I drowned in the history of those streets and the vibrance of the creole cottages discreetly hidden from the street by courtyards . I loved the pace the food and the romance of the city. It was breath taking.
     
  4. Mem

    Mem
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    1. Manhattan, NYC - After you go there every other city seems like a town.

    2. Key West Florida - The drive there from Miami is great too.

    3. Tie- Las Vegas and Orlando, Florida (Disney and other theme parks).

    Mine are all in the US. Outside of the US my #1 would be Nassau, Bahamas.
     
  5. HotBulge

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    Lowells talk to Cabots, Cabots talk to God
    I won't necessarily speak to the top #3 ranked places on my list, but from my travels around the world, I do think it's highly important to visit at least one ancient "wonder" of spiritual significance to a culture or group of people. It's important to understand what could move thousands of people in a culture to perform years/decades/centuries of manual labor in honor of some belief greater than themselves. It is important to understand the depth of motivation, the ability to organize people and labor and resources for one common, monumental goal.

    Some examples include:
    • The Great Pyramids of Giza, Egypt
    • Borobadur in Indonesia- largest ancient Bhuddist temple
    • the Mayan temple ruins
    • The Vatican - regardless of the sordid history of the Catholic Church
    • St. Sophia Mosque - in Istanbul
    • The Temple of Athena - in Athens, Greece
     
  6. headbang8

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    Shibuya, Tokyo. In a country known for being weird as fuck, Shibuya takes the cake. Many fashionistas have discovered the ultra-hip Omotesando and Harajuku, but just down the Yamanote Line is tits-to-the-wind Shibuya. This is where real Japanese teen girls and boys go to pick up their glam-duds, unselfconsciously start global trends, and just generally hang out. In Hachiko Square, three thousand people cross the intersection on every turn of the lights--unless there's something sexy on one of the six or so jumbotrons, in which case everyone simply stands there, mesmerised. Go to the shopping centre labeled Shibuya 109, and you will see more outrageous clothes, shoes, accessories and general bumpf than a sane mind can take at once. Visit Tokyu Hands, which is like Home Depot on acid. Then, hang out in GasPanic until the sun comes up, and get your breakfast at the Tsukiji fish markets down the Ginza line. You don't get sushi much fresher than that.

    (Mind you, there are a dozen places in Japan that would make my top three. Kobe is the world's greatest gourmet city. Kyoto makes you gasp. Hokkaido ski-ing beats anything in Europe or the Rockies. Shinjuku is utter madness. Ginza out-cools everything)

    The Kremlin. The Czars amassed jewels and treasures by the truckload. After a revolution and two world wars, about a quarter of it is left. That's plenty. And it's all on display in the Kremlin, especially the Armoury. The uber-inner sanctum is the Diamond Vault, heavily fortified. There are two doors, which cannot be opened at the same time for security reasons. Why? The first exhibit on display as you enter is a bucket of diamonds. That's right, a bucket of diamonds. The sceptre of Catherine the Great contains a black diamond weighing 760 carats, from memory. Afterwards, walk outside to Red Square. Comrade Lenin rarely takes visitors nowadays, but you can see his (rather modest) tomb. Across the way is the famous GUM department store, recently promoted from a place where you needed to queue up to buy a comb, to a glittering, exclusive playground for luxury shoppers. Behind St. Basil's, you'll find the Hotel Moscow, the largest in the world, with over 5,000 rooms. To each according to his needs, I say.

    Cape May, New Jersey. Twenty years ago, Disney sent a whole lot of executives to Cape May. The locals rejoiced--they thought it meant the next Disneyland would be built nearby. In fact, the Disneycrats came to copy--Celebration, Florida is a lame, fake copy of the original Cape May. It's the most amazing slice of seaside Americana and Victorian architecture. Street upon street of it, beautifully preserved. And home of the first summer White House, before Camp David.

    Can I sneak in a fourth, Exwhy? If anyone is thinking of going to the Olympics in Beijing, stay here.
     
  7. vince

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    We are really on a travel kick today! This is great reading about everyone's favorite places.

    I don't know if can really say which are my top three places. But I'll tell you three favorites.

    1) The Similian Islands in the Andaman Sea about 100 km northwest of Phuket, Thailand. This group of nine islands is a national park of Thailand and nearly uninhabited. There is a small govt, owned group of bungalows, a park ranger station and a group of bungalows owned by the royal family. The main attraction is the diving. I have never ever dove in such an incredible underwater garden. The bio-diversity ranges from whale sharks to the amazing coral formations. The islands themselves are in a completely natural state. If a coconut palm takes root the park authorities remove it and no human development is allowed. We chartered a live-a-board diving boat for a week, which is really the only way you can stay in the islands.

    2) The Grand Canyon. Nothing prepares you for the enormity of the canyon. It looks just like the photos you have seen, but when you walk up to the rim and look down, it positively takes your breathe away. The scale of it is hard to comprehend. It was one of my most memorable days. The drive north from Phoenix through the desert was wonderful and on the trip back we drove down the Sedona river canyon under the red skies of a sunset. At night the stars in the desert were incredible.

    3) The Pyramids and Sakara in Egypt. The Pyramids of Giza are bigger than you imagine. It boggles the mind how they could have been built 3000 years ago. I went with my daughter in 2003 and it was one of the best trips we ever took. We went down inside the Pyramid of Khafre through a very narrow and low tunnel to a chamber that was about 15 x 10 metres. It was decorated with stars carved in the ceiling and it was very warm in there too. Nearby is the Sphinx, which is huge with it's noble and inscrutable face. At nearby Sakara you can visit smaller pyramids, and a temple which is decorated from floor to ceiling with incredibly beautiful hieroglyphics. You can touch them as much as you want and they are in a wonderful state of preservation. It is some of the most beautiful art I have ever seen.

    There are so many more amazing places on Earth. I wish everyone could travel more.

    Rico- Machu Pichu and Cusco has been on my to-do list since I was a little kid! I hope to get there someday.
     
  8. Mem

    Mem
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    I will have to visit Cape May before I leave NJ. I also have to go to Wildwood, I've never been there either. The farthest south in NJ I have been is in Atlantic City (too many times)
     
  9. erratic

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    I love this thread! Thank you!

    My suggestion is to find a place where there are no people. There should be no traces of civilization, unless they are being swallowed by green. Find a place where the animals look at you and wonder what you are.

    Then never tell anyone where it is.
     
  10. exwhyzee

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    I agree, especially Jungle Juice made with rum...mmmm.

    If its anything like Bar Harbor, I can imagine its beautiful.

    I agree. Architecture is my kick...and food is a close second. :cool:

    Excellent spots, and I was just in Badaling a year ago...I shoulda stayed there!

    Road trip to Maccu Picchu! I have a friend who stayed the night in MP back in the 1960s. She and her friends stayed up all night running around the place in t he dark and had a blast. Not allowed anymore...

    Cape May is awesome for little Queen Anne cottages and salt water taffy.
     
  11. vince

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    Or here- A little guesthouse I stumbled across last fall. It's the best 300 year old hotel in Beijing. I believe it has 16 rooms. It cost me 45 euros, I think they'll be getting a little more this year. :rolleyes:
     
  12. dong20

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    Hmm, it's so difficult ... but for places I've visited :

    1) Angkor Wat - One of the few places that not only met my expectations but surpassed them. I first visited back in about '91 on the back of UNTAC. I managed to blag a motorbike - (until then bar half a day on a scooter on Penang I'd never been on one) for the purposes of avoiding 'official' channels. Headed out just before dawn and spent the next three or four days on some of the worst roads imaginable.

    The trip was made more eventful by being run off the road twice (that I remember), once into a mine crater full of water, the other time into a 'paddy' field. I nearly turned back twice due to the bike being trashed but both times decided against it after managing to bash it back into functionality, also it was as far back as forward! Arrived an hour before dusk and sat (there was nobody else there but a couple of locals) in awe as the sun went down.

    There are many other temples in the area, Preah Khan is a particular favourite, as is Bantay Srei - I only found out later that it, and the road leading to it were still mined in parts - there were cows roaming free at Bantay Srei in a macabre attempt to find them!

    2) Machu Picchu - Somewhere I'd always wanted to visit and while it took three very tough (WiƱaywayna is so named for a reason!) days from KM88, the view from the sungate at dawn on the fourth made it all worthwhile. There was a lot of trouble with Sendero Luminoso at the time so it was very quiet which was a blessing, perhaps a handful of other people. A glutton for punishment I also climbed up Huayna Piccu for a vertiginous look down, and it is.

    3) It's tough but probably, Easter Island - For a simple sense of isolation it's hard to beat and having been trying to get there for years I finally made it in 2004. Rented a bike (surprise) and travelled round for days. The view from the Rano Kau (Orongo village) is amazing. One can pretty much look down several hundred meters to the ocean!! Rapa Nui has a sad and violent history and it's almost tangible when standing on some outcrop looking out to sea, then turning round to see a Moai looking over my shoulder doing the same.

    Honourable mention goes to Hong Kong Harbour & Sydney Harbours (nearly made 3rd place) - I love harbours and these two are perhaps my favourites, albeit for different reasons. Pollution causes Hong Kong to bestow epic sunsets and seen from the Star Ferry is hard to beat. Sydney has an elegance that's hard to define. It just seems to ooze a sense of well-being. Both are places I can (and have) spent an entire day with a book just watching the world go by.

    I've been to Angkor, Hong Kong and Sydney several times over the years but sadly to Rapa Nui and Machu Piccu only once (so far). It's so hard to single out just three and aside from Angkor which so far has an unassailable #1 spot, here's a list I prepared a while back for a previous thread:

    The world is an amazing, (and disappointing) place
     
  13. Nrets

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    Los Angeles. To live and die in LA. Behind the Chuck E Cheese with a Colt 45 (beer) and a pack of cigarettes. No seriously, LA has something. I like the working class taco stands. They are everywhere out here. There is one in Venice that has some crazy feeling of family and friends and just LA. People on break from construction...coming or going to a club....Police relaxing after a brawl or a car chase...Someone on break from some TV show...You see everything at eateries.
    So I would say in LA it is all about Canter's in Hollywood ...El Indio in the SF Valley, that taco place in Venice, The Pantry, The Standard and Clifton's Cafeteria Downtown. throw in any of the Salvadoran, Ethiopian or Korean restaurants that line Western, Sunset and La Brea South of Hollywood and some of the Armenian, Russian or even Italian places in Glendale and Pasadena along with the redneck bars of Simi Valley and you have LA, a city of immigrants making a life in a new crazy land mixed with people from every background all sharing a common thread.

    To live and die in LA

    Berkeley - is a town where Western civilization works because people help each other out, they do things themselves such as make their own transportation if they can and there is a general vibe of creativity. Personally I loved walking up and down Shattuck and Telegraph with a guitar and just talking to all of the eccentrics. Also my favorite spot in the Bay area..is the spot which I love more than any other urban spot. And I have been to a LOT of cities. It is the island on the 80 freeway that connects Oakland and San francisco. Halfway across the bay bridge. You get off on an exit that looks like it is closed to the public. It is like a 5mph offramp. And there you are on this abandoned naval base. It has stunning views of the bay area especially at sunset and sunrise.

    Tijuana. I love chaos. Some of the coolest punk culture ever comes out of TJ. I haven't been lucky enough to check out Central or South America yet.
     
  14. B_JasonDawgxxx

    B_JasonDawgxxx New Member

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    Maui..I love it because.Its the one place where I can just let go and relax.The people are so nice and friendly and its just so beautiful and relaxing

    New York.I love the manic energy.The people the crowds,the shopping.If you cant find it in New York,You wont find it anywhere.

    Miami..The weather.The people watching.the BEAUTIFUL men there.The night life is on fire.Its so beautiful and laid back.Plus one of my best friends lives there and I adore him to his core.
     
  15. D_Roland_D_Hay

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    The Grand Canyon...another incredible place. Like you said, the enormity is incredible and the site very spiritual...two places on this earth have done that to me...the Grand Canyon and Machu Pichu.

    Hey Vince...lets do some scuba diving and head over to Cusco.
     
  16. B_becominghorse

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    I can't reduce it to three.
     
  17. jason_els

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    Looks like the Inn of the Sixth Happiness only without the open sewer. Nice!
     
  18. unabear09

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    hmm... Well I've only seen a small bit of the world (very small in fact) but I do have some favorite places.

    #1 Nashville, TN. Nashville is my second home (and future home at some point down the road), and I love the 'aura' of the city. It is such a cosmopolitan city, has a great natural landscape, a budding art scene, lots of entertainment venues, etc. While it is a larger city, it still maintains a small town southern charm that has been lost in so many of the larger urban areas in the south (think Atlanta)

    #2 The Hague, Netherlands in general, with emphasis on Scheveningen Beach. The history, international importance/significance, and artistic influences. This is such a beautiful city, with great cultural diversity....well I could sit here for days on end trying to explain why I love this city

    #3 The Tennessee River Valley of Northern Alabama/Southern Tennessee.....specifically The Shoals area of NW Alabama (home!) and Chattanooga, Tennessee. This area is home to me, and holds a special place in my heart. It is an environmentaly diverse area, with swamps, mountains, and everything inbetween. If you have never been to the Tennessee Valley, then you are missing out on one of the most beautiful regions of the world.
     
  19. B_becominghorse

    B_becominghorse New Member

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    This is a lovely area, I love Chattanooga even though went only once as a child. All the old shacks used to have tarpaulin signs on them SEE ROCK CITY and we went there, that's part of the Smokies, I think. It was wonderful. Same trip we went to Nashville. I like it too, but didn't get to go to Grand Ole Opry.
     
  20. jason_els

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    Top three........ hmmmmmm......

    Rome - The Sistine Chapel is the single most spectacular man-made creation :)wink:) I've ever seen. It makes me wonder how we'll be able to preserve it when we have to leave earth millions of years from now. And that's just one room in a city littlered with history. It's difficult for me to imagine living in a city with the ruins of another civilization going back over 2,000 years in my back yard. It's the kind of city where you can't tell where anything is. It's all a jumble. Yet every corner turned presents something fascinating or unexpected. In Rome you feel the presence of history like nowhere else. Other cities are old but only Rome do you have the very latest with the very oldest and everything in between. It's the attic of western civilization. Add to this the pleasant weather, great food, and the singularly Italian sense of style, and you find yourself in a city where celebrating la dolce vita comes before everything else. Oh and you can drink from all the public fountains. The water isn't recycled and it all comes in to the city on aqueducts the Romans built 2000 years ago.

    Bermuda - From one of the oldest places in the world to one of the youngest. Bermuda is a strange place. It's not freewheeling like the Caribbean islands it's often confused with, tourism isn't the biggest industry. It's British but it's not, nor is it American. Bermuda is its own thing, set apart, much like its geography of not quite being anywhere else. Unlike many islands, Bermuda isn't poor. It actually has the highest standard of living in the western hemisphere even if it doesn't look like it. The people of Bermuda are warmer than the climate if you are truly genuine and bother to respect their customs.

    But then there's the island itself; a magical place riddled with caves, gardens, stunning pink sand beaches, and aquamarine waters. Bermuda feels small. The water is always very close and the enormous expanse of surrounding ocean is always present in mind. Yet for as lonely as this little speck of land out in the Atlantic is, the homes and landscape is very homey. There are few gigantic hotels and they're not all crammed onto the better beaches forming a line of white concrete. The brilliance of Bermuda is owed directly to its British lineage. The island feels vastly larger than it is. Pastel houses and landscapes are situated in such a way to make every place feel alone to itself. While nearly all the island is settled, there are spaces here and there where it seems no one has been for years. This, combined with the subtropical climate and plantings, makes for some of the lovliest gardens in the world. On the best days, time moves very slowly, the waters are warm, and there's a fun place to go for dinner and entertainment. Even on the worst days, it still doesn't feel as though you're quite on earth. You don't insult the queen here. You don't where flip flops in town. You always greet everyone you meet. You dress for dinner. The gentility of Bermuda is frequently lost on the masses of tourists herded off the ships like so many cattle and they have harmed the character of the island, but if you bother to do as the Bermudans do, you'll find all sorts of doors to private places opened to you.

    New York
    - This is tough. I live 50 miles from the city of New York, yet I grew-up on a farm. I had no friends nearby to play with, just trees and fields and animals. And lots of plants and animals! Everything from delicate orchids to giant beeches, from crayfish to bears. Where I live there are no highways, no trains. It takes work to get here and thus, my little corner of New York state went unmolested for a very long time; a small town in the orbit of a gigantic megalopolis. My mom though, didn't allow me to be a country hick even though her side of the family has lived here for over 200 years. For my birthday or Christmas, or one special school day a year, she'd take me into the city and we'd see shows, go to exotic restaurants, see the sites, and visit museums. The city to me was very alien, filled with people whom I knew had no ability to relate to the life I lived in the woods not so far away. It was frightening and fascinating at the same time. As I grew older I came to appreciate the treasure on my doorstep. New York is a bitch mistress: wonderful if you can afford it, hell if you can't, so I always kept the city at arm's length despite my fascination with it.

    It was only as I traveled around the US and the world more that I came to appreciate just how special New York was. Long before I ran across anyone mentioning it, I always felt like everywhere else was second-rate. No matter where I went, there weren't as many tall buildings, not as many top drawer artists, not as much life. I called Chicago, "New York waiting to happen." I couldn't help the comparisons or the disappointment. When you're in New York, you just feel like you're on the leading edge of where ever it is humanity's going. Everywhere else is in tow.

    I do appreciate London and think the world of Rome as you can see. LA just doesn't have any there there. You always feel whatever is going on is down the next boulevard but inevitably, it's just like the last boulevard you left. Tokyo is just plain batshit crazy and it has the same lively feel to some degree, but it's much less of a cultural repository. It can't boast 8 Vermeers :wink:. Of all cities, I'll agree with my friend and say Paris is most like New York. I love Paris. It's a magnificent city which has much in common with New York, but I have no love for the Parisians. New Yorkers are much friendlier.

    I am in the unusual situation of being a New Yorker without being a New Yorker. All our news comes from the city, all our Sunday papers, all our radio stations. We're as interested in who the next mayor will be as people who live in the city, yet we're not really there. It's like being a life-long servant in a rich household. You know all there is about living rich, except you're not. And that gives me a unique appreciation for New York (the city). I know the subways, the streets, the bridges, and I can even reasonably tell a cab how to get somewhere. In contrast, I still look up at the buildings, generally walk slower than most other people, and have a larger sense of personal space. I'm in awe of what I see and hear, I am still in dread fear of places I don't consider safe. For all that, New York is a magnificent place filled with cultures from around the world, monumental architecture, and every example of everything to at least some degree. No other place is so rich in the world experience, no other place has the best of everything.

    Yup, I'm a tourist in my own back yard.
     
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