NGT Rewind: Hogwarts Express Rides, Photo Tips from Raghu Rai and Moroccan Adventures

The best of Nat Geo Traveller India from July 25-31. | By NGT Staff  
Halong Bay Vietnam
A traditional fishing junk completes a timeless scene on Ha Long Bay, a UNESCO World Heritage site scattered with some 1,600 islands and islets. Photo: Catherine Karnow

What’s New

LOCAL VIEW: Tech giants Google and Microsoft have begun mapping Rio de Janeiro’s colourful, crowded favelas with the help of locals. But what does this mean for travellers to the Brazilian city? More here.

Where to Go Now

ISLAND HOPPING: Looking for a beach holiday? The Indonesian archipelago of Raja Ampat, with its thriving reefs, is a mecca for divers. But the islands have plenty to keep landlubbers occupied too. More here.

NEW ZEALAND CALLING: There’s a gourmet revolution brewing in Wellington. The capital city of New Zealand counts trendy gelato shops, Wonka-esque chocolate stores and outlets selling hand-churned peanut butter amongst its eateries. More here.

SHELF INDULGENCE: Five must-visit bookstores around the world, including one that inspired the Hogwarts school library. More here.

DATE WITH DURRELL: At the age of six, the animal-loving Gerald Durrell took the decision to build his own zoo. Luckily for us (and for the wildlife he helped pull back from the brink of extinction), that is exactly what happened. Here’s how you can visit the sanctuary of the famous author-conservationist. More here.

MOVE IT, MOVE IT: The Argentinean city of Buenos Aires lives to party. Clubs rarely shut before dawn, the streets are alive until well past midnight, and there’s always music in the air. Here’s why the Argentinean city should be on your travel list this year. More here.

WILD THINGS: Four islands around the world dominated by animals, including one where cats outnumber humans. More here.

Travel Reads

ALL ABOARD: Locomotive nut Sidin Vadukut journeys through the Scottish Highlands on The Jacobite, or—as the steamer is more popularly called—the “Harry Potter” train. More here.

PAST PERFECT: Made immortal on celluloid, the Moroccan city of Casablanca has inspired travellers for centuries. A mother and daughter return to the city to revisit their roots and retrace Casablanca’s romantic past. More here.

TRAVELLERS’ TALES: We’ve all come a long way from our first-ever trip. With experience usually comes wisdom. In these letters to our younger selves, we resort to humour, hindsight, and other vain attempts to change the past. More here.

THE RIDDLER: For over four thousand years, Egypt’s Great Sphinx has captivated the world’s imagination. Who built it? What happened to its nose? Here are seven things you may not know about this ancient giant. More here.

IN PHOTOS: Millipedes, firefly squids, fungi and other glow-in-the-dark species, caught on camera. More here.

VIDEO: Watch an Airbus A380, the world’s largest passenger plane, get a complete overhaul in 2 minutes. More here.

Insider Stories

PARTY FAVOURITE: Fast, filling, and affordable, the MLA finds place on many Hyderabad restaurant menus. This is its story. More here.

PHOTO STORY: Vietnam has come a long way from its war-ravaged past. The Southeast Asian country is experiencing a renaissance, with tourists flocking to its cities and prospering local businesses. This beautiful photo essay allows a glimpse into the changing country. More here.

SWEET DEAL: Flowery, with an undertone of warm spice—that’s what kithul, Sri Lanka’s answer to maple syrup, tastes like. More here.

THE WEATHERMAN: For over 15 years, an octogenarian in Karnataka’s Anshi-Dandeli Tiger Reserve has been helping weather forecasters decode the monsoon. Here’s how. More here.

MYSORE MASALA: The south Indian town of Mysuru may be best known for its regal past, but its contemporary inhabitants give the city its eclectic feel. Meet its snake rescuers and legendary Mysore pak-makers. More here.

Travel Advice

TARMAC TROUBLES: Pre-trip checks, motion sickness hacks, and other useful tips in our guide to avoiding common road-trip woes. More here.

MASTERCLASS: Legendary photojournalist Raghu Rai shares tips on how to find calm in chaos for the perfect picture. More here.

TREAD SOFTLY: Handy tips for earth-friendly travel to offset our environmental karma. More here.


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