nick gemistos

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Port of Call: A Day in Dubai

With the recession behind it, Dubai (within the United Arab Emirates) is back to building opulent hotels and reigniting its reputation as a Las Vegas of the Middle East. But step away from its Guinness World Record-winning skyscrapers, and you’ll find a multicultural emirate with a centuries-old …

Learning to See in Uganda

When the boat starts to rock, I’m not entirely reassured when the guide says, “Don’t worry. Just a hippo trying to come up under us.”<p>Right. No big deal. We’re about to capsize in the middle of a herd of twenty hippos, spread across the river like fat, warm rocks, because one of them understands …

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The Oldest Desert in the World

Standing atop one of the tallest dunes on Earth, it felt as though the sand beneath our feet stretched into infinity. With its red dunes rolling endlessly into the ocean, the Namib is the oldest desert in the world — a sea of silica stretching along Namibia‘s entire Atlantic coast.<p>In the local Nàmá …

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The Best of Playa del Carmen

If you associate travel with faraway lands and exotic cultures, it can be easy to overlook your neighbors when planning your next big trip. So when my family was planning our last vacation, Playa del Carmen, Mexico, seemed like a good place to start. Turns out you don’t have to be halfway across …

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I Heart My City: Barrett’s Charleston

As a member of the U.S. Coast Guard, traveling is part of the job for <b>Barrett Caldwell</b>. While he spends half the year criss-crossing the globe and soaking up other cultures, he’ll never outgrow his fondness for the place where he “learned to love the water and developed an appreciation for history …

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Asian-Inspired Chocolate in Brussels

When we travel, we can become someone else, and in Brussels, I fancied myself a chocolate designer. I’d open a small corner shop just off the Grand Place, where it’s less chaotic and I could create beautiful pieces of art that also happen to be delicious. It would be more of a chocolate salon, a …

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Then + Now: Machu Picchu

Hiram Bingham first set eyes on Machu Picchu in 1911. Though he did not discover the striking citadel in the clouds (locals, many of whom served as Bingham’s guides, had known its whereabouts for centuries), he intended to reveal it to the world.<p>That chance came when the National Geographic Society …