juliamhammond

Best kept secrets? I’ll give you a few of mine…

Sometimes there’s a travel listicle that does the rounds that just makes you laugh out loud.  I’ve just read a piece by Tour Radar claiming to have been written in conjunction with Lonely Planet which puts Prague, Sri Lanka and Goa on a compilation of eight “best kept secrets”.  I’m sorry, but walk into any High Street travel agent and it won’t be hard to find a package to any of those.  I’m shocked that this got through the filter, if I’m honest, so here’s my response.  You want best kept secrets?  I’ll reveal a few of mine.

Karajia, Peru

Everyone goes south from Lima, but head north and leave the crowds behind.  The area around Chachapoyas has some superb sights and you’ll often get them to yourself.  Read more in my guide to Northern Peru’s Chacha circuit here:

https://juliamhammond.wordpress.com/2014/11/25/northern-peru-the-chacha-circuit/

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The sarcophagi at Karajia

Citadelle Laferriere, Haiti

Haiti’s troubled political history and its penchant for getting right in the way of terrible natural disasters means that tourist infrastructure is severely limited.  Make the effort, though, and there are many wonderful places to be explored.  Aside from Jacmel, I pretty much had everywhere to myself.

https://juliamhammond.wordpress.com/2015/07/05/looking-back-on-my-trip-to-haiti/

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The view from the Citadelle

Copan Ruinas, Honduras

Central America is packed with Mayan ruins but you’ll have a hard time finding space for a bit of quiet reflection if you stick to the beaten track.  Honduras’ reputation as the murder capital of the world keeps the tourists away, but the savvy traveller will know that away from the large cities, the country is as safe as they come.  Saddle up and see for yourself in sleepy Copan Ruinas.

https://juliamhammond.wordpress.com/2015/08/12/the-best-places-to-ride-a-horse-on-holiday/

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Riding with the cowboys up near the border with Guatemala

Obuasi, Ghana

The only other foreigners at the lodge in Obuasi were a bunch of South Africans who partied hard by night and worked the gold mine by day.  Few tourists make it to this part of Ghana but it remains one of my favourite underground experiences.

http://www.gonomad.com/5032-ghana-going-down-a-gold-mine-in-obuasi

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Obuasi miners at shift change

Tanna, Vanuatu

The draw of this South Pacific island is well documented – an active volcano which bred the Prince Philip cult. Its remoteness, however, means that it sees relatively few tourists and those that venture are likely to have little company as they view some of the most spectacular sights on the planet.

https://juliamhammond.wordpress.com/2015/03/23/looking-back-on-my-trip-to-tanna-vanuatu/

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Mount Yasur erupts

Bremen, Germany

If you’re looking for somewhere off the beaten track in Europe, you’re going to have to search hard.  Bremen’s northerly location in Germany means it sees relatively few visitors and yet there’s lots to do and see.

https://juliamhammond.wordpress.com/2015/10/03/beautiful-bremen/

https://juliamhammond.wordpress.com/2016/06/07/just-back-from-a-day-trip-to-bremen/

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Windmill in the park

Extremadura, Spain

Also in a country that sees its fair share of international tourists is the delightful region of Extremadura.  Overlooked in favour of its southerly neighbour Andalusia, yet an easy ride from Madrid, this part of Spain is packed with history and extraordinary scenery.  Get there before everyone else.  No, scratch that – leave this one to me!

https://juliamhammond.wordpress.com/2016/07/12/a-beginners-guide-to-extremadura/

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The sound of Spanish guitar carries across Cáceres’ Ciudad Monumental

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4 responses

  1. Some great tips there Julia and equally mystified by those hidden secrets!

    Liked by 1 person

    December 13, 2016 at 9:37 am

  2. It makes you wonder if they’ve ever been!

    Liked by 1 person

    December 13, 2016 at 9:38 am

  3. Great picks!

    Like

    December 14, 2016 at 8:58 am

  4. Thanks Andrew, what would yours be?

    Like

    December 14, 2016 at 9:06 am

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