Yankee Stadium - The Bronx, NYC, USA: The home of the Major League Baseball team, the New York Yankees. The original Yankee Stadium was built in 1923 and demolished in 2010. The new $2.3 billion stadium opened in 2009 and is a great place to spend an afternoon soaking up some American sporting culture.
Oculus - World Trade Center Hub, NYC, USA: A train station like no other! Completed in 2016 at a cost of $4bn, this structure sits on the site of the 9/11 attacks and is designed to resemble a bird flying from the hands of a child. Head to one of the mezzanine floors to take it all in.
Marina Bay – Singapore: National Day takes place every year on August 9th to commemorate Singapore's independence from Malaysia in 1965. The festivities that take place around Marina Bay include; the National Day Parade, a military show and it all ends with a dazzling fireworks display.
Golden Gate Bridge – San Francisco, USA: Spanning the Golden Gate, the one-mile-wide (1.6 km) strait connecting San Francisco Bay and the Pacific Ocean, this bridge links the city of San Francisco to Marin County. When it opened in 1937, it was both the longest and the tallest suspension bridge in the world, now its claim to fame is that it’s the most photographed bridge in the world!
Tuscan Hills – San Gimignano, Italy: San Gimignano is an Italian hill town in Tuscany, southwest of Florence, surrounded by 13th-century walls. The fiery summer sunsets over the Tuscan hills surrounding this medieval town are renowned.
Street Scene – Hoi An, Vietnam: Hoi An is a popular stop for anyone travelling through Vietnam – small but bustling at all hours of the day. It’s full of colour, with bright yellow buildings and vibrant lanterns making it a picture-perfect destination.
Cathedral Cove – Coromandel Peninsula, New Zealand: Te Whanganui-A-Hei (Cathedral Cove) is one of the most photographed natural attractions in New Zealand and becomes even more busy during the summer holidays in January. It’s worth wandering away from the central attraction, the huge sandstone arch, and exploring the beaches on either side, which are beautiful in their own right.
A moment of calm – Polonnaruwa, Sri Lanka: Polonnaruwa is a fascinating archaeological park, filled with hundreds of ancient statues, tombs and temples. It's also home to many monkeys who take absolutely no notice of the tourists whilst they leap from one statue to another.
Pacific Coast Highway – California, USA: One of the most iconic roads in the world, the Pacific Coast Highway or State Route 1 runs along most of the Pacific coastline of the state of California. Driving the 656 miles from north to south makes it easier to stop off at some of the vantage points on the route, including the famous Bixby Bridge.
The Great Barrier Reef – Queensland, Australia: The Great Barrier Reef is the largest coral reef system in the world with over 2,900 individual reefs and 900 islands, spread across an area of over 300,000 square kilometres. The dolphins are pretty friendly here and like to swim alongside!
Kata Tjuṯa / The Olgas – Northern Territory, Australia: The 500-million-year-old red rock formations of Kata Tjuṯa are an impressive sight, some say that they are more captivating than Uluru. Kata Tjuta is the landmark’s original name, meaning ‘many heads’. The first non-Aboriginal person to see Kata Tjuta was the explorer Ernest Giles, who spotted the domes in 1872. He named the highest peak Mount Olga, after Queen Olga of Württemberg (a kingdom in Germany at the time). Head there at sunset to watch as the domes appear to change colour!
Street Scene – Hanoi, Vietnam: Amidst the frantic moped-filled streets of Hanoi, stall holders await their next sale. Their ingenuity is really quite impressive with the way they manage to cram so many wares into their small stalls.
Cape Reinga Lighthouse – Cape Reinga / Te Rerenga Wairua, New Zealand: 'Te Rerenga Wairua' in Māori language means the leaping-off place of spirits, this refers to the Māori belief that the cape is the point where the spirits of the dead enter the underworld. This is one of the most northerly points of mainland New Zealand and it’s also the meeting point of the Tasman Sea and Pacific Ocean which creates some spectacular waves.
Mitre Peak – Milford Sound, New Zealand: One of New Zealand’s most popular natural attractions, Milford Sound is set in the Fiordland National Park and is a stunning sight with its cliffs clad in emerald green forest rising out of the deep dark waters. The drive there is almost as stunning but be sure to take your waterproof - the mean annual rainfall there is 6,813mm, raining on average for 182 days a year.
Rooftops – Saint-Émilion, France: Nestled amongst the rolling vineyards in the heart of the Bordeaux wine region is the medieval town of Saint-Émilion. It is home to word-famous vineyards thanks to its terroir which provides perfect conditions for many grape varieties to thrive including; Merlot, Cabernet Franc, Cabernet Sauvignon, Malbec and Petit Verdot.
The Beach – Farewell Spit, New Zealand: This is the northernmost point of the South Island of New Zealand, named in 1770 by Captain Cook as he left the country. Most of it is only accessible if you’re on a tour with a regulated guide but if you manage to get there you may be treated to some seals basking in the sun. It’s also worth checking out nearby Wharariki Beach – horse riding over the lush green hills to canter along this pristine strip of sand is on many bucket lists!
The Fort – Galle, Sri Lanka: Perched above the stone sea walls on the southwest coast of Sri Lanka is the sleepy city of Galle. There isn’t a huge amount to do here but you may actually appreciate the quieter pace of life at the end of your trip around Sri Lanka. Wander the pedestrianized streets, taking in the colonial Portuguese, Dutch and British architecture, and explore the fortified old city – a beautiful place to take in the sunset.
The Summer Palace – Beijing, China: Just a short drive from the centre of Beijing is The Summer Palace, the largest imperial garden in China, covering almost 3 square kilometers, of which three-quarters is water. Emperor Qianglong commissioned the first Summer Palace, named Qingyi Yuan or ‘the Garden of Clear Ripples’, in 1750. Although it can get extremely busy, the lakes, hills and beautiful designs, which even cover the lengthy walkways, are a refreshing contrast to the city.
Sri Mariamman Temple – Chinatown, Singapore: Sat at the end of Pagoda Street, in the heart of Singapore’s Chinatown is Sri Mariamman Temple, the oldest Hindu temple in Singapore. The original three-tiered gopuram (entrance tower) was constructed in 1903 although the current one dates back to the 1960s and features an array of brightly coloured sculptures. The temple holds an annual fire walking ceremony around a week before Deepavali, the festival of lights which takes place in autumn each year.
Carmel (Carmel-by-the-Sea) – California, USA: No road trip along the Pacific Coast Highway in California would be complete without a stop at Carmel on the Monterey peninsula. Although classed as a city, it really has the feel of a village – pretty cottages, winding streets and boutique galleries. The real attraction of this place has to be its beaches though – peak though the shade of the Monterey cypress trees to the pale, powdery sand that leads to the turquoise Pacific Ocean lapping at the shore. The sunsets are also picture-perfect here…
The National Orchid Garden – Botanic Gardens, Singapore: The National Orchid Garden is truly beautiful with stunning displays full of colour – there are over 1000 species and 2000 hybrids on display. Wander through the garden surrounded by beautiful flowers and check out the orchids created for visiting celebrities and dignitaries, including; the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, Jackie Chan, Michael Kors, Ban Ki-Moon and Princess Diana.
The Forbidden City – Beijing, China: The Forbidden City is the world’s largest imperial palace, comprising over 980 buildings and covering over 180 acres, which is even more incredible given the fact that it’s right in the heart of Beijing. Since its construction in 1420, it has been home to 24 Chinese Emperors, right through to the abdication of the last emperor in 1912 and the creation of the Republic of China. This is just part of the impressive nine dragon wall that stretches over 60 feet, built in 1733 to stop people peeking into the palace – it definitely beats your standard garden fence!
Shwedagon Pagoda – Yangon, Myanmar: The Shwedagon Pagoda is a focal point in Myanmar, its shimmering, 99-metre dome perched upon a hill overlooking the city. The gold-plated dome is topped with over 7,000 diamonds, rubies, topaz, sapphires and a huge emerald. Despite a major earthquake in 1769, smaller tremors since and even a fire in 1931, it still keeps watch over the city. It remains a focal point for Buddhists and many festivals are held here throughout the year.
Angkor Wat – Siem Reap, Cambodia: The largest religious monument in the world even appears on the Cambodian flag. It was originally constructed as a Hindu temple dedicated to the god Vishnu although it was gradually transformed into a Buddhist temple towards the end of the 12th century. According to inscriptions, the construction involved 300,000 workers and 6000 elephants. This is just one of an incredible selection of spectacular temples in the area, others include Bayon, Ta Prohm and Angkor Thom.
Udawalawe National Park – Sri Lanka: Udawalawe National Park is one of the world's best places to see wild elephants, it’s thought that there are around 250 roaming freely throughout the park, attracted by the Udawalawe reservoir and other drinking spots! Other residents include leopards, sloth bears, deer, wild boar, water buffalo, macaque and many wild birds. Although many people visit to catch a glimpse of these amazing creatures, the scenery itself is just as spectacular.
Bologna – Emilia-Romagna, Italy: Home to the world’s oldest university, the city still has a large student population and the young, vibrant culture that goes with it. As the capital of the Emilia-Romagna, it boasts some of the most famous Italian cuisine; pasta and meat sauces from Bologna itself, ham and parmigiano cheese from Parma, the finest balsamic vinegar from Modena and, of course, gelato! The city is also famous for its medieval towers; of the almost 200 built in the 12th and 13th centuries by wealthy families, only around 20 remain. The most famous are the "Due Torri" (Asinelli and Garisenda) in the centre of town.
Yosemite National Park – California, USA: A National Park of epic proportions – covering over 1,000 square miles, it’s a similar size to the US state of Rhode Island. Set amongst the Sierra Nevada mountain range, almost 95% of the park is designated as wilderness. It’s famed for towering granite monoliths including the gargantuan El Capitan and Half Dome which take centre-stage in many of the awe-inspiring views around the park such as this one (Tunnel View).
The Getty Center – California, USA: The $1.3billion Getty Center opened in December 1997, funded by the J. Paul Getty Museum Trust. The architecture of the building, manicured gardens and views over downtown LA are almost as impressive as the collection itself, which includes works by Rembrandt, Cézanne, Renoir, Manet, Van Gogh…the list goes on! J. Paul Getty made his fortune through oil, was named the richest living American in 1953 and was worth more than $2billion when he died in 1976.
Santa Barbara – California, USA: Santa Barbara is a perfect pitstop on a roadtrip down the Pacific Coast in California. Unwind by the sea and under the blue skies (the sun is always shining here!); wander the peaceful streets, pop into some beautiful boutiques, canter along the beach, sample some delicious food, and even better wines…
Brick House, The High Line – NYC, USA: The High Line is a public park built on a historic freight rail line elevated above the streets on Manhattan’s West Side. The Spur section of the park opened in 2019, offering a large open space and incorporating the Plinth as a focal point, which houses a series of art installations that rotate every eighteen months. The inaugural commission was “Brick House” by Simone Leigh, a huge 16-foot-tall bronze bust of a Black woman looking over the streets below. The title comes from the term for a strong Black woman who stands with the strength, endurance, and integrity of a house made of bricks.
San Gimignano – Tuscany, Italy: San Gimignano is a picturesque medieval hilltop town in Tuscany, famed for its fortified tower houses. Between the 11th and 13th centuries, it is estimated that wealthy families built over 70 of these and although only 14 of the original towers are standing today, they create a beautiful sight from the surrounding vineyards. The town is also known for its white wine, Vernaccia di San Gimignano, produced from the ancient Vernaccia grapes, which thrive in the sandstone hills surrounding the town.
Hoi An – Vietnam: Hoi An is a popular stop for anyone travelling through Vietnam – small but bustling at all hours of the day. It’s full of colour, with bright yellow buildings and vibrant lanterns making it a picture-perfect destination. You don’t have to venture too far out of the town to get some peace and quiet though - surrounded by vivid green paddy fields, it’s a beautiful place to explore on two wheels.
Château Branaire-Ducru – Bordeaux, France: Château Branaire-Ducru winery is located in the famous Bordeaux wine region of France. The main red wine they produce is also called Château Branaire and was one of only ten wines in the Quatrièmes Crus category of the Bordeaux Wine Official Classification. This classification system was created in 1885 at the request of Emperor Napoleon III. It was used to categorise France's best Bordeaux wines at the Exposition Universelle de Paris that year, which attracted visitors from around the world. There have only been two changes in over 100 years since the original classification!
Kaikōura – New Zealand: The name Kaikōura means ‘meal of crayfish’ and the town is well known for its abundant sea life, though most people go to catch a glimpse of something slightly more exciting such as a whale, dolphins or fur seals! The scenery in this area is truly spectacular too, with the sea on one side and the Southern Alps on the other, there are epic views in whichever direction you look.
Udawalawe National Park – Sri Lanka: Udawalawe National Park is one of the world's best places to see wild elephants, it’s thought that there are around 250 roaming freely throughout the park, attracted by the Udawalawe reservoir and other drinking spots! Other residents include leopards, sloth bears, deer, wild boar, water buffalo, macaque and many wild birds. Although most people visit to catch a glimpse of these amazing creatures, the scenery itself is just as spectacular.
Central Park – New York City, USA: Central Park is the largest public park in Manhattan, occupying an area of 840 acres. The park opened in 1876, a masterpiece in artificial landscaping offering lakes, swathes of grass, gentle slopes and rocky walks. It really is an oasis in the heart of the city - the perfect place to escape the frenetic pace of modern-day, urban Manhattan.
Lake Matheson – South Island, New Zealand: Lake Matheson was formed when the Fox Glacier retreated around 14,000 years ago and was an important food gathering site (mahinga kai) for Maori travelling along the coast. Today it’s popular amongst tourists who come to see the picture-perfect reflections of the snow-capped Southern Alps in the lake. From this vantage point, you can see both Aoraki / Mount Cook and Mount Tasman, New Zealand’s highest peaks.
Gardens by the Bay – Singapore: The number 1 attraction in Singapore, according to TripAdvisor. Situated at the Marina Bay Waterfront, Gardens by the Bay is an oasis in the heart of the city, spread over 101 hectares and incorporating three gardens - Bay South, Bay East and Bay Central. Since opening in 2009, it has won international acclaim and multiple awards, including; the ‘Landscape Award’ from World Architecture News in 2013, the ‘Best Attraction in Asia Pacific’ from Travel Weekly in 2015 and the ‘Best Attraction Experience’ at the 2019 Singapore Tourism Awards.
The Australian War Memorial – Canberra, Australia: Not something you may usually associate with travel, but the Australian War Memorial is one of the best in the world and a must-see on any visit to Canberra. It encompasses an archive, a shrine of epic proportions and one of the best museums in Australia, all set in the heart of the capital city. The exhibits are exciting, engaging and thought provoking. The Last Post ceremony takes place every evening, sharing the story behind one of the names on the Roll of Honour before visitors leave – a poignant way to finish the day.
Lanterns – Hoi An, Vietnam: Hoi An is a popular stop for anyone travelling through Vietnam – small but bustling at all hours of the day. It’s full of colour during the day with its bright yellow buildings but it really comes alive at night with its vibrant lanterns. They were introduced by the Chinese and Japanese in the late 16th century. Given silk was one of the key exports from Hoi An, it wasn’t long before they started producing silk lanterns commercially and they’ve been popular to this day.