Travel News

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Although many people visit the region for a Kenya and Tanzania safari, the lakes of Kenya have gotten more attention in the news lately. Lake Elementaita, Lake Bogoria and Lake Nakuru were named UNESCO World Heritage Sites in June.

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The lush fields covering the mountainsides of Panama’s Chiriquí Highlands in Boquete are home to various forms of wildlife, including the sought-after resplendent quetzal, making nature travel through the countryside memorable for any wildlife or birding enthusiast. But they also produce one of the country's largest exports, a commodity that no traveler should pass by: coffee.

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Though sites like Machu Picchu, the Great Pyramids of Egypt and Stonehenge may differ from one another in several ways, they are all bound by at least one similarity — distinction as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The prestigious title reflects these locations' unique positions as arbiters of the local culture and as a commanding physical significance for the area in which it is found.

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Far beyond the city limits of sparkling Rio de Janeiro lie some of Brazil's most spectacular gems for those seeking genuine nature travel. The striking yellow breast and beak of the saffron toucanet is one such wonder, and can be found in Iguazu National Park (pictured) on a Pantanal expedition.

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South America has much to offer those who are interested in nature travel with the Brazilian Pantanal — the world's largest expanse of wetlands — holding particular esteem among the birdwatching crowd. Ranging between 54,000 and 75,000 square-miles, the Pantanal is home to a wealth of rare and beautiful animals, including more than 1,000 species of birds.

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Birders have long explored the Amazon River and its tributaries, as theses waterways are home to a diverse collection of avian species, many of which are rarely glimpsed outside of the region.

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The island of Elephanta offers the epitome of Hindu cave culture and nature travel. Even its name refers to the rock art practiced by people as far back as the 6th century. When Portugese navigators landed on the island, they found a massive stone elephant commonly called Gharapuri, which is an alternate name for the island, according to UNESCO.

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Meals are an aspect of Egyptian culture that American travelers may be unprepared for. Learning about Egypt’s dining culture will whet any visitor’s appetite for some local fare before exploring the Pyramids or relaxing on a Nile cruise.

While Egyptians are generally very enthusiastic about food and meals, their formal meals are structured differently than the traditional breakfast, lunch and dinner format of the West.

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Once thought to be a cross between a camel and a leopard, the giraffe is now a commonly recognized animal in its own right. However, spotting one on a Kenya and Tanzania safari is still a treat for nature enthusiasts.

The giraffe is the tallest living animal, measuring as high as 20 feet. Their long necks allow them to reach into trees to maintain their herbivorous diet, and their legs — usually measuring about six feet high — allow them to run at speeds of 35 miles per hour at a gallop.

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Salt mined in Maras, Peru, just north of Cusco, has always been popular among the Andean people, but markets as far away as Switzerland, Japan and the Philippines are now demanding the special mineral.

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