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The water around Ishigaki is pure blue, with white sandy beaches to soothe your senses. But don't just stand on the beach and stare. Travelers recommend a ride in a glass-bottomed boat to gaze at the coral reefs and tropical fish from above.
Kapaa, also spelled Kapa'a, means "solid" in Hawaiian. Travelers find this small town, nestled at the base of Nounou (the Sleeping Giant) Mountain on Kauai tourist friendly with its diverse array of hotels, shopping centers, and restaurants. The Kinipopo Shopping Village is a favorite for its fun eateries and small keepsake shops. Look for the "Kauai Made" logo for products made by local craftsmen using traditional materials. Kappa also offers water sports, including water skiing and kayaking.
Known as the safari capital of Africa, Nairobi is an energetic, modern city that serves as a fascinating introduction to both wildlife and nightlife. Music clubs pulse with life, shops and markets bustle, and a mélange of restaurants will tempt your palate in this former Maasai watering hole. Top sights include the Karen Blixen Museum, Giraffe Centre and the black rhinos of Nairobi National Park. The compact city center is safe to walk in and taxis make other areas accessible.
Travelers say Halifax is best seen on foot, so park the car and start walking. Immerse yourself in Halifax's rich history at the Maritime Museum of the Atlantic, and be sure to survey the city from the 18th-century Citadel National Historic Site. Then walk into any of Halifax's great bars and restaurants and catch some live music to round out your day.
One of Poland’s most beautiful cities, Gdansk, on the Baltic Sea, has played major roles in history, especially in the 20th-century. It was the 1939 flash point of World War II, and then in 1980, the birthplace of the Solidarnosc labor movement, ushering the end of Communist domination in Eastern Europe. Gdansk’s Old Town, painstakingly reconstructed to its Hanseatic League glory after being leveled in World War II, is a highlight. The 14th-century Town Hall houses the city’s historical museum.
Vibrant and packed with Victorian mansions, Costa Rica's rowdy, bustling capital was built on the profits of the coffee trade and working "golden bean" plantations still surround the city. Try freshly roasted local beans at Mercado Central. For shinier gold, visit the Museo del Oro. Many renovated landmarks now house stylish hotels. Usually viewed as a hub, rather than a destination, nightlife is concentrated in Spanish village-inspired El Pueblo. Don't miss the elegant 1897 National Theater.
The Latvian capital, the largest city in the Baltics, is a fascinating mixture of proud Latvian tradition and influences of the various countries that have occupied it. Independent once again since 1991, Riga's Art Nouveau center has won it UNESCO World Heritage Site designation. Opened up to mass tourism with the advent of budget air travel, Riga's Old City and its abundance of bars and restaurants can be explored on foot. The New Town is easily reached by an efficient and modern bus and tram network.
Positioned at the eastern tip of the Costa del Sol, Nerja boasts nearly 10 miles of powdery beaches featuring activities like water skiing, scuba diving and sailing. Although tourist-oriented, it hasn't been overtaken by high-rises, and its huge promenade delivers panoramic Mediterranean views.
Today Casablanca is a large, modern city, but the former French colonial post still allows myriad movie moments for those who want to revisit love in the medina and Old City. Casa (as locals call it) isn’t too touristy, but it’s the most cosmopolitan and Western-feeling city in Morocco. Visit The King Hassan II Mosque and Casa's Medina.