A couple of friends and I are looking to travel the world for about a year in the near future. We've been looking at places to go and we think we have a lot of the typical places covered (i.e. the pyramids, taj mahal, etc) but we want to have the full experience and see some places that most people miss. I figured if anyone knew of anything it would be the people on here. We are open to going anywhere and everywhere possible. If anyone knows of any hidden gems anywhere around the world please let me know.
Thank you all in advance
Myanmar is a great country well worth visiting. The shwedagon Pagoda in Yangon is one of the best temples in the world. It is just incredble even more so at night. If you do a google search for some pictures, you will see what I mean. You can stand on one tile and see all the colours of the diamond that crowns the pagoda. It only seemed to be one tile in the huge complex. Inle Lake in Myanmar is also amazing. You can stay in an over water bungalow for a fraction of the cost that they are in most other places that have them. It was not much more than $20USD (at the rate you get when you change your money illegally on the black market). The rate you get at the airport is almost without a doubt the worst rate anywhere in the world. When I was there you got 7 Kyats for every $1USD at the airport or the bank in town, if you exchanged money illegally on the black market it was 1040 Kyats for every $1USD!!! That meant it was the equivalent of $215USD for a glass of orange juice at the official rate of exchange or about $1.50USD at the black market rate.
Another area well worth going to is southern China like the Yangshuo and Guilin area. It is very beautiful around that area.
If you are going to go to India, you should try and make it to Amritsar and see the Golden Temple. I didn't get there but it is meant to be even more spectacular than the Taj Mahal. It is up in the northern part of India close to the Pakistan border. Another place in the general region which is meant to be great but I haven't got to yet is Bhutan. They do have a rediculous law there which means you'd only really want to spend a few days maximum as you are required to change $200USD a day regardless of how much you spend and you can not change the money back when you leave, so you are stuck having spend a minimum of $200USD a day.
Russia (in particularly Moscow and St Petersburg) are not such hidden gems, but one missed by most tourists because getting the visa is so painful. It is so worth going if you like your architecture and photography. St Petersburg is my favourite city in the world. I've been there twice. You would need to do it towards the start of your trip to make sure the visa was valid as you would need to get it before you left home.
Other places you are highly unlikely to get to but which are gems is Scoresby Sund Fjord on the East coast of Greenland, Western Greenland any places in Antarctica and the inside passage of Alaska.
If you are going to South America, a trip to Iguazu Falls is a must and it is better to see from the Brazil side, but ideally you would see both sides. If you need to get a visa before you go to Brazil, it would be worth going to Argentina first and then ending in Brazil because the visa for Brazil is a real pain. If you hold a UK and New Zealand passport then you don't need a visa for Brazil before you go, so it is simple. Australian's get a real hard time getting a visa to Brazil. Easter Island in Chile is worth a few days if you were around in South America, but is one of if not the most isolated place on earth, so is not easy to reach. Patagonian South America is awesome mainly in December - February when the weather is more likely to be alright but even then you have no guarentees it will be remotedly warm. Torres Del Paine National Park, El Chalten, Perito Merino glacier is one of the largest glaciers in the world outside of Antarctica and is well worth seeing.
Australia has plenty of gems in the Northern Territory and North Western Australian. Tasmania is also a really nice place but more so in summer when the weather is not totally rubbish the whole time.
[ Edit: Edited on 09-Dec-2010, at 03:51 by aharrold45 ]
Okay we Australia has a wonderful less visited places;
1. Coles bay Tasmania it is part of a national park but the walk sucluded beaches and rocks are wonderful ESP in December January
2. Mosmon creek between port Douglas and the northern tip it's a bit of the track in the middle of sugar canes, when the weather is great it is perfect for a swim!
3. Victoia has many wonderful little towns but the best little place is bridgewater bay, it has a wonderful fossiliesd Forrest and seal colony! Go before it rots away!!
Awesome ideas guys. This is exactly what I was looking for. Thanks!!