The immensity and diversity of the United States are reflected through its architecture, natural scenery, and cuisine. Global immigration has contributed to the varied cuisine scene where award-winning bistros jostle alongside gastropubs and gourmet food trucks. There isn’t a single place in the nation where you’ll struggle to satisfy your hunger but these are the best US cities for culinary travel.
New York City, New York
As the largest city in the US by population, New York City’s dining scene is an assortment of North American and international eateries across hole-in-the-wall joints and upscale restaurants headed up by master chefs. NYC claims the highest number of Michelin-starred restaurants with many establishments carrying three stars. These include Chef's Table at Brooklyn Fare where shellfish and meat are prepared according to Japanese and French techniques. Thomas Keller’s nine-course tasting menu at Per Se mingles New American gastronomy with French haute cuisine while Central Park views complete the luxury experience.
Welcome to Budapest, the captivating capital city of Hungary, where history and royalty intertwine with rich culture, hidden gems, tantalizing cuisine, and exceptional wines. Join me as we embark on a regal journey through Budapest, tracing the footsteps of kings and queens, including the prominent Habsburg royalty. Get ready to immerse yourself in history, explore hidden gems, indulge in exquisite food, and savor the finest Hungarian wines.
Budapest's illustrious history unfolds like a storybook, with the influence of various dynasties leaving their mark on the city. Marvel at the grandeur of Buda Castle, a testament to the Habsburg era, which houses the Budapest History Museum and the Hungarian National Gallery. Explore the Royal Palace complex, where you'll find the enchanting Matthias Church, the symbolic coronation site of Hungarian kings.
Only a fraction smaller than the state of Texas, the island of Madagascar comprises rainforests, arid deserts, mangroves, white sand beaches, and the compelling capital of Antananarivo. Baobab trees and lemurs are the emblems of Madagascar but that’s not all you’ll find in this African country. Let’s take a tour of Madagascar’s highlights.
Flora and Fauna of Madagascar
Also known as reniala (the mother of the forest) baobab trees thrive in environments where few other living species can. These gigantic succulents are native to the African savannah and six of the nine genera grow in the arid south of Madagascar. They can exceed heights of 30 meters and act as a source of water and shelter for reptiles, birds, and mammals.
As the ‘island of lemurs’ Madagascar is home to over 100 different varieties of its endemic primate. Ranomafana National Park provides a habitat to around 20 species including the rare golden bamboo lemur and Milne-Edwards' sifaka lemur. These arboreal lemurs are so acclimatized to leaping through the canopies that they are unable to walk on all four legs. Instead, they bound upright as though using a pogo stick. Berenty Reserve is a prime spot for sighting ring-tailed lemurs (Lemur catta) and Verreaux's sifaka while Aye-Aye Island harbors an endangered species of long-fingered lemur.
Whisky with no “e” refers exclusively to Scottish, Canadian, and Japanese grain spirits distilled from corn, wheat, or barley whereas whiskey with an “e” is used for these types of spirits crafted in the United States and Ireland. Producing single malt, single grain, and blended whiskies, whisky is one of Scotland’s finest exports and a driver of tourism. According to law, Scotch whisky must be distilled and matured in Scotland in oak casks for at least three years in order to earn the designation.
As the setting of over half of Scotland's malt whisky distilleries, Speyside is known as Malt Whisky Country. In fact, this area in the northeast of Scotland is just one of its five premier whisky regions. The Highlands, Lowlands, Campbeltown, and the Scottish Isles claim the other four. Travelers who enjoy visiting wine regions around the world may be curious to explore Speyside in tandem with other scenic whisky regions of Scotland.
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