Lonely Planet

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21 free things to do in Tokyo

Exploring the Big Sushi is a mind-blowing experience, but it can also blow your budget. Don't despair there’s an abundance of things to do and see in Tokyo that don’t cost a single yen. From gardens and temples to contemporary art, sumo practice and a world-famous fish market, you can experience …

Japanese Art

Ultimate travel list

Is the list of places you’d like to visit becoming a little unwieldy? Ours was – which is why we’ve whittled them down from thousands to a definitive rundown of the planet’s most unforgettable sights.

Not only that, we’ve made the bold move of ranking them in order of brilliance, based on a highly …

Great Barrier Reef

Ultimate travel list

A labyrinth of humanity, a jungle-shrouded temple, a head-spinning architectural masterpiece, and the archipelago that prompted Darwin's theory of evolution...

That's just a sample of the cultural heavyweights and natural wonders pushing for a place in the top 20 of our list of the world’s ultimate …

Architecture

Ultimate travel list

From the salt flats of Bolivia's Salar de Uyuni to the chaos of Morocco’s most famous square, our definitive assortment of showstopping, jaw-dropping sights just keeps on stirring up a storm of wanderlust.

Want ancient marvels? No problem. Raw natural beauty? We’ve got you covered with our ultimate …

European Travel

Ultimate travel list

While many of our ultimate travel destinations inevitably draw throngs of sightseers every day, others are so vast and serene you’ll probably feel like the only person left on earth.

So what are you waiting for? Opportunity to both enter the fray and ponder your existence in solitude abounds in this …

Outdoors

Ultimate travel list

The most mind-blowing sights on the planet come in a vast array of forms – from urban wonders like the colourful, cobbled streets of old Havana to epic works of nature like the plains of the Serengeti.

The must-see places in this final instalment of our series on the top 50 sights of Lonely Planet's …

Africa

Exploring West Australia's craft beer scene

Hoppy and assertive IPAs and subtle and zesty Belgian-style farmhouse ales are now all the rage in craft beer bars around the world, but in Western Australia the trend for full-flavoured and interesting brews actually kicked off three decades ago.

Back in 1984, the Matilda Bay Brewing Company …

Craft Brewing

New Zealand's best foodie events

New Zealand’s fresh produce, artisan producers, top-notch wines and a lively craft beer scene make it a mouth-watering destination for discerning foodies. And best of all, it’s easy for visitors to enjoy these at a slew of tempting food, wine and beer festivals that offer a chance to sample …

Travel (New Zealand)

Where and how to watch sport like a local

There are few better ways into a place’s soul than through its sports teams. Step into the febrile atmosphere of a stadium or arena mid-match and you’ll find usually relaxed locals in a state of agitation or elation, depending on the scoreline.

Head to one of these sporting destinations and we …

Indian Premier League

A guide to South Korea's most charming mural villages

The term 'street art' can often conjure up an image of hooded graffiti-artists stenciling edgy pieces down seedy city laneways in the dark of the night.

But in South Korea, there’s a different kind of street art scene going on – formerly underserved neighbourhoods are getting makeovers in the form …

Asia

Taking it to the streets: Seoul's surprising contemporary art scene

Ever since Seoul-born artist Nam June Paik caused a sensation with his pioneering video installation and performance art in the 1960s, there has been international interest in the unique creations of Korean contemporary artists.

It was also at the tail end of the 1960s that South Korea’s National …

Art

Nikola-Lenivets: contemporary art in the Russian countryside

Contemporary art is not usually prone to hiding in the remote countryside, but here is an exception. Taken over by a group of architects and land artists more than 20 years ago, the once abandoned village of Nikola-Lenivets, 220km southwest of Moscow, is now a huge open-air exhibition space dotted …

Russia

Discovering East Prussian legacy in Kaliningrad

With wide avenues lined with propaganda posters, plenty of military uniforms in sight and its Stalinist-era name, Kaliningrad at first comes across as unmistakably Russian, or rather – Soviet. But its Gothic cathedral, cobbled streets and remains of Jugendstil architecture lurking behind …

Russia

How to banish back-seat boredom on a family road trip

Originally published on 11 August 2015.

Kids are not baggage – you can’t just sling them in the boot. I know because I’ve tried. A bored child can turn into an insufferable one when you are trapped together for hours in a claustrophobic car.

But don’t despair. Here are some of the ways you can prime …

Road Trips

Dark side of Kowloon: peninsular Hong Kong by night

Most travellers to Hong Kong gravitate towards the glamour of its main island, yet across Victoria Harbour lies the more heavily populated Kowloon. Nicknamed the ‘dark side’, despite being permanently lit up in a fiery neon glow, Kowloon is restlessly trapped between Western idealism and Da Li (the …

Hong Kong

Weird and wonderful Korea: unique sights for the temple-fatigued

South Korea knows how to let loose and get wonderfully bonkers. Of course, the country's wealth of captivating temples and museums are well worth visiting.

But beyond the zen of temples and earnestness of history museums, a visit to some of Korea's lesser-known sights offers fascinating insight into …

Asia

Make art not war in South Korea artists' village

Only 6km from the border with the world’s most secretive nation lies another secret destination – but one you are more likely to want to visit. The dedicated art village of Heyri in South Korea is about an hour’s drive north of Seoul and just throwing distance (though not recommended) from the …

Art

The Skelligs: a trip to the edge of the abyss

Originally published on 10 August 2015.

The search for solitude has led pilgrims to the edges of the known world – and beyond – throughout history. But few final destinations rival the remoteness of Skellig Michael, a lonely, storm-lashed rock off the west coast of Ireland.

The trip to the Unesco …

Visiting Japan's ghost island of Hashima

The small island of Hashima was once bustling with a community of 5000 people, who lived alongside the mines they worked. Abandoned in the 1970s, the island and its buildings had been left to the elements. But calls for its preservation, a cameo role in a Bond movie, and Unesco recognition have all …

The Musashi

The other Japan: secret beaches of Okinawa and the Southwest Islands

Originally published on 10 August 2015.

Okinawa and the Southwest Islands comprise one of Japan’s pretty little secrets – a side of Japan that differs from the mainland in culture and pace. They take a little more time and effort to access, but the rewards for getting there are gorgeous …

Asia

Porto on a plate: a perfect day in Portugal's food capital

When it comes to talent in the kitchen, Porto knows few rivals in Portugal. With the Atlantic on its doorstep, the Douro vineyards rolling east and the Trás-os-Montes producing smoked meats in its fumeiros and tangy cheeses - the city cherry picks the finest regional produce.

So loosen the belt and …

Portugal

Foodlandia: the perfect weekend in Portland for foodies

Portland welcomes an enthusiasm for food. Long associated with quirky excess – nude bike rides, beard-grooming competitions and backyard chicken coops – this city combines a special brand of do-as-you-please West Coast liberalism with the region's fertile farmland.

The evidence is in the numbers. …

Portland, OR

Discovering the Great Blue Hole

When Jacques Cousteau puts a dive site on his Top Ten list, then you know it must be good. That’s what I was reminding myself as I descended along a wall into the depths of the Great Blue Hole, a World Heritage Site off the coast of Belize.

So far, it was dark.

But suddenly, the wall gave way to a …

The Philippines for beginners: 7 first-timer fails to avoid on your trip

Originally published on 06 August 2015.

The Philippines is a relatively easy travel destination by Southeast Asian standards. English is widely spoken, and the country has an endearing don’t-worry-be-happy vibe, soothing for first-time visitors. Alas, volatile weather and natural disasters can mess …

Asia Travel

Best places to travel in November 2015

Originally published on 04 August 2015.

Choose to travel in November and you’re in for a treat – this penultimate month is packed with quirky festivals, sporting events and wondrous wildlife-spotting opportunities.

Don your cowboy boots and indulge in a little gaucho culture in Argentina; stand in …

South America Travel

Two-week traveller: choose your Central Asia adventure

Originally published on 03 August 2015.

Once the realm of Silk Road merchants and Great Game spies, the Heavenly Mountains and Black Sand deserts of the ‘Stans, as the five countries of Central Asia are affectionately known, have historically been the stuff of epic overland trips taking many months …

Asia Travel

Makgeolli to microbreweries: how to drink well in Seoul

Originally published on 04 August 2015.

In a city where alcohol is cheap and free-flowing, sampling a bottle of soju (a vodka-like spirit), makgeolli (milky rice wine) or local beer is a quintessential aspect of a night out in Seoul.

A large portion of the spirits on offer are still mass produced …

Seoul

The best beaches of the Philippines

Originally published on 03 August 2015.

The Philippines is generating a buzz as a less-discovered alternative to southeast Asian beach hotspots like Bali and southern Thailand. It’s not hard to see why. The country has more than 7000 islands, most boasting at least an idyllic beach or two. With such …

Beaches

Island adventures: top activities in the Philippines

Originally published on 03 August 2015.

The Philippines is justifiably known for its beaches, but the country isn’t just about finding an isolated patch of sand and sinking into a sun-kissed stupor. The 7000-plus islands of the Philippines offer an array of more adventurous pursuits that can raise …

Philippines

Five reasons to visit Prizren, Kosovo’s cultural capital

Originally published on 04 August 2015.

If you’re looking for culture in Kosovo, it’s best to head south to Prizren. Seated at the foot of the Shar mountains and close to the Rahovec (Orahovac) wine region, Kosovo’s second city packs a heavy punch with its rich history, traditional handicraft shops …

Kosovo