Commissioned by Napoleon III in 1860, the Palais Garnier Opera House was designed by Charles Garnier in an exuberant Baroque style. Garnier worked tirelessly on the project for over a decade, from 1862 to 1875. Today, the opulent monument is a symbol of Napoleon’s Imperial regime. The facade features classical columns and eight sculptures representing allegorical figures: Poetry, Music, Idyll, Recitation, Song, Drama, and Dance. The loggia depicts busts of composers, including Rossini, Beethoven, and Mozart, while the cupola is topped with a statue of Apollo with allegorical figures of Poetry and Music. Upon entering the building, visitors are dazzled by the lavish 11,000-square-meter interior. Most of the building’s space is dedicated to the grand foyer with its fabulous Grand Escalier, marble entrance staircase, adorned by ornate gilded lamps.
Nepal is a an awesome destination if you are searching for ancient history mixed with trekking and adventure exploration. Bhaktapur, the third of the “Royal Cities,” lies on the old trade route to Tibet, just outside of Kathmandu. For Bhaktapur, the trade route was both an arterial link and major source of wealth. Its relative remoteness at the time allowed the city to develop independently and in ways which distinguish it from the other two cities. In contrast to Patan and Kathmandu, the population of Bhaktapur is primarily Hindu. The best place from which to begin a tour of the city is Durbar Square, where in addition to the royal palace, several temples are also situated. The whole area is an UNESCO World Heritage Site. Many of the buildings in Durbar Square in Bhaktapur were damaged in the 2015 earthquake.
Looking for a luxury travel club?. Visiting San Blas is mainly about enjoying the beauty of the nature and spending your time relaxing on these incredible islands, think of it as a way to get away from it all. I find that it’s the small things that you can do on these multi-day, get aways that make them unique. Here are a few highlights of the speedboat trip I did with San Blas Adventures from Colombia to San Blas. San Blas is lobster heaven. If you go snorkelling the chances are high that you will see them hiding in their little shelters.If not you can buy one from the Kunas and have it cooked to perfection by a local for $6. Not $60 like you’ll have to pay in a fancy restaurant in Europe. $6 in San Blas.
Thailand is a a fabulous place if you are looking for ancient history mixed with modern attractions feeling. A visit to one of the floating markets is a fun way to do some shopping and eating while supporting local vendors and observing local commerce in action. Some do seem to cater more to the tourist crowds than to be part of the fabric of local Thais’ daily lives, but there are others that make for a nice authentic travel experience. You’ll need to get up early to visit a floating market, as vendors are out in their long wooden boats first thing in the morning with their goods, fresh fruits, vegetables, spices, and tasty dishes. There are several floating markets near Bangkok, Amphawa and Damnoen Saduak being among the most popular. You can go it alone or join a guided tour, which can include visits to local houses and shops.
Indonesia is an amazing destination, so much colour, a must see. Another of Indonesia’s famed volcanoes, Gunung Rinjani is a top attraction on Lombok. Rinjani itself does not see the eruptions and activity that some of the others have, but its caldera-forming eruption in the late 13th century is believed to have been one of the most powerful in human history. A lake sits in Rinjani’s caldera, and within the lake sits Mt. Baru, another active volcano. In Rinjani National Park, you may spot animals such as the rare black Ebony leaf monkey, long-tailed macaques, the sulfur-crested cockatoo, and other exotic species. Guided treks are available, and you can camp overnight in the park. The park does caution that treks are strenuous, so if you plan to hike the mountain, you should be in good physical health and be prepared with the appropriate equipment.
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