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Lonely PlanetLonely Planet

Lonely Planet

December 2019

Feed your love of travel with award-winning Lonely Planet. Inside you'll find topical ideas for easy inspirational weekend breaks and more adventurous experiences to try out, helped by the insider knowledge of Lonely Planet's many experts around the world. You'll be taken on a journey through words and beautiful photography, with highly atmospheric features transporting you to spectacular landscapes and allowing local people to reveal their culture, history ,food, drink and the natural wonders that surround them.

Country:
United Kingdom
Language:
English
Publisher:
BBC Worldwide Limited
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$32.21
12 Issues

IN THIS ISSUE

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editor’s note

Don’t be hard on yourself if you’ve never heard of eSwatini. This is the southern African nation that was, until quite recently, known as Swaziland. It’s a tiny kingdom of immense character, where a benchmark on a global scale is being set for conservation efforts. You’ll find eSwatini starring among the top countries in this year’s Best in Travel run-through (from p42), and featured in my write up of a recent trip there (p54). So many moments from my visit have whirled through my mind since: being allowed to creep close to white rhino that, due to decades of success here in the fight against poaching, have good reason to be less fearful of humans than their cousins elsewhere in Africa; riding out at dawn among wildebeest and zebra that…

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the wood for the trees

It might sound hard to keep almost 100 square miles of forest and island-studded lakes under wraps, but that’s largely what happened with Québec’s Parc National d’Opémican, until now. This back-country expanse around four-and-a-half hours’ drive north of Toronto has been gradually opening to the public this year, and while visitor facilities are rudimentary in parts, 2020 should bring expanded access. For now, the change in seasons means a shift in activities from canoe exploration to snowshoeing, cross-country skiing and ice fishing. Read more at sepaq.com.…

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morocco 2-in-1

Marrakesh often serves as a winter escape for northern Europeans, but – after a couple of days of sensory overload in its historic medina – many visitors feel in need of a second escape. In the last year, intercity travel in Morocco has become easier, first with the opening of a high-speed rail line in the north of the country, and now with the launch of Souk to Surf’s bus shuttle services linking Marrakesh to various wave-blessed spots along the Atlantic coast. In the former, find a peaceful riad from which to set out to explore intricately tiled palaces, contemporary art galleries and markets where there’s every chance of returning with an unforeseen purchase of an ornamental lamp or teapot. Once you’ve experienced Marrakesh to the full, book a £14…

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golden boy

It may be 100 years since his tomb was first discovered, but the poster-child of ancient Egypt still has plenty of star power. Opening at London’s Saatchi Gallery on 2 November, Tutankhamun: Treasures of the Golden Pharaoh is expected to sell out during its UK run. ‘Tutankhamun is Egypt’s best ambassador,’ says curator Tarek El Awady. ‘His name is the world’s most known of the ancient kings and the golden Pharaoh is the most travelled.’ This will be the last time the artefacts tour before returning to their new home, the Grand Egyptian Museum in Giza, due to open in 2020. Among the objects displayed is this gilded wooden figure of Tutankhamun throwing a harpoon, which shows the young king – who ascended to the throne aged nine and died…

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1898 the post, ghent

Why am I going to Ghent? Ask natives which their favourite Belgian city is and very few will answer ‘Bruges’. Too touristy, too expensive and the food’s rubbish they’ll explain, should you ask their reasons. But Ghent will be a common answer. It has all the characteristics loved by visitors to Bruges (the canals, medieval churches and cobbled streets lined with wooden-shuttered houses among them) but with the additions of abundant quirks, a solid local character to life there, and few tourist throngs. I’m sold. So where should I stay? 1898 The Post opened last year in a prime location overlooking Ghent’s main quay, the Graslei, and the stone St Michael’s Bridge. The overall feeling on entering the hotel is one of a deep exhale: this place does calm like a Zen priest.…

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a year of unusual sports

December: Chess boxing, Turkey Over eleven rounds – six chess, five boxing – competitors (‘nerdletes’) must KO their opponents in the ring or outwit them on the board. Popular in India (the supposed birthplace of chess), where it is reported to have lifted some pros out of poverty. London Chess Boxing stages bouts throughout the year, and the World Amateur Championships will take place in December 2019, in Turkey. londonchessboxing.com March: Sheep shearing, New Zealand Ewe better believe the annual Golden Shears International Championships are a big deal in New Zealand. The four-day lanolin-scented jamboree, touted as ‘the Wimbledon of sheep shearing’, is held in the town of Masterton every March to crown the world’s fastest sheep shearer. Live bands bring a party vibe and there’s much food and drink to be enjoyed.…

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