Caye Caulker – Belize

The tiny island of Caye Caulker is infamous for its snorkelling and diving adventures, diverse wildlife and hammock lifestyle. Then there’s the wooden houses on stilts, sandy streets and palm trees. Caye Caulker is aptly known for its ‘Go Slow’ motto, a sentiment unique to an island that has ruled out cars, meaning that the locals ride bicycles and take golf cart taxis.

Although Caye Caulker is only just off the coast of Belize, its culture is set apart from the rest of Central America, this five-mile island has a distinct identity of its own. Fusing a population of Mestizo refugee descendants, those who speak English-based Creole and a growing number of Chinese families, the island has a cultural blend that is distinctively vibrant and evolving.

Unmissable

Go snorkelling or diving around the world’s second-largest barrier reef.

Visit Shark Ray Alley to swim with sea turtles, stingrays, sharks and a nearby sunken shipping container.

Rent a sea kayak on the north of the island and explore the dense mangrove forest, past the Split.

Stroll on Front Street and enjoy the local artisan shops.

Eat freshly caught sea food from one of the many restaurants scattered around the island.

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San Pedro de Atacama – Chile

The Chilean town of San Pedro de Atacama, is a popular oasis for people wanting to see some of northern Chile’s most impressive landscapes. Abundant in volcanoes, steaming geysers, salt lakes, thermal spas, intense lagoons and a host of breathtaking rock formations, it is a must-see.

The town itself, centred around a picturesque square and a humble church, is around one hundred kilometres from Calama. While it has become a hub for tour agencies, cafés and tourist accommodation, the dusty streets of San Pedro retain a laid-back place to have as a base for the myriad of tours around the area.

For those heading to Salar de Uyuni, the world’s largest salt flat, this town is a great starting or finishing point for the three/four day tours.

 

Buenos Aires – Argentina

Buenos Aires, a city with two faces, where wide boulevards meet cobbled alleyways, peaceful parques border frantic downtown and raffish tanguero neighbourhoods coincide with the wealthy and exclusive. Cosmopolitan and rough around the edges it is a mezcla of contradictions.

BA is the Argentinian definition of big-city culture. It is a mosaic of food, tango and nightlife. Find empanadas 24 hours a day, drink and dance in boliches until 6 or 7am and join the porteños in eating endless amounts of meat at an asado.

Unmissables

  • Live instrumental music of La Bomba Del Tiempo on Mondays at Ciudad Cultural Konex
  • Tuesday night milongas at La Catedral
  • Unforgettable and international 360 degree Fuerza Bruta show, originally shown in BA
  • Rollerblading in Los Bosques del Palermo
  • Fútbol at La Bombonera (rent members tickets online)
  • Stroll around Reserva Ecológica Costanera Sur to see the widest river in the world
  • Secret cocktails at Victoria Brown’s and Frank’s (you’ll need a password to get in to the latter)
  • The unfolding artwork of Floralis Genérica
  • La Casa Rosada – the palatial mansion
  • Delicious Venezuelan food from Panachef (order their patacones)
  • New Orleans style chicken and homemade lemonade from Nola
  • Slightly expensive but definitely worth it Monzu pizza
  • Unbelievably indulgent cakes and treats from Pani
  • Argentinian steak from Don Julio’s (make a reservation)

Must Try

  • Mate – typical caffeine-rich drink
  • Empanadas – stuffed pastries
  • Alfajores – soft round cookies with dulce de leche in the middle
  • Dulce de Leche – a creamy milk caramel
  • Choripán – barbecue sausage sandwich

 

Parque – park
Tanguero – enthusiastic about tango (no literal translation)
Mezcla – mixture
Boliche – bar or club
Porteño – people from the port (used for people from BA)
Asado – Argentinian barbecue
Milonga – dance school or hall