In case you haven’t noticed, we’re avid travelers for many reasons, but the primal one being the ability to escape and see life in a different light. Out of this very one thing spawns endless possibilities in creativity and of utmost importance, oneself. Though you can always easily trot across the globe to the confinements of a luxurious hotel/resort, there’s no magic in that. We believe the greatest experience comes about by walking around, trying new things at different places, and immersing in the locale. However, crossing boundaries often times requires much research on the destination for the sake of developing a general cultural awareness and ensuring you get to explore the best possible spots amid your excursion. Having been lucky enough to frequent several places on the face of this planet, we’ve rallied up 3 inspiring cities you should add to your itinerary in 2016 along with the best spots to infiltrate:
1. New York City
The City that Never Sleeps…it’s true, the streets will make you feel brand new, the lights will inspire you. There are countless things to experience from the food to the never exhausting scenery and the like-minded personalities that force you to transcend. There are so many reasons this city is becoming our permanent home!
The NYC food scene never disappoints and the selections are copious! Definitely test out the menu at the Cafeteria – they have an amazing take on classic dishes (if you’re into french toast – the Crunchy French Toast Croissant is a dream)! If you’re within the gaping walls of Chelsea, you’ve got to try Mokbar for ramen which fuses Korean & Japanese flavors delectably. The ABC Kitchen makes a great dinner choice for its amazing service, idyllic decor, and the freshest of fresh ingredients (all organic, non-GMO). Finish off the night with drinks at the grand Polo Bar. But don’t be fooled, they offer a full dinner menu, which is also delightful.
The MET Museum houses a massive archive of art work and artifacts from all over the globe. However, if museums aren’t your thing, you should visit the Brooklyn Bridge – it makes a beautiful backdrop for photos with its breathtaking view. Times Square is definitely a must-see especially if it’s your first NYC trip because its brightest lights and ever busy streets prove that the city truly never sleeps.
Shop at Catbird for the most stunning selection of all things dainty and sparkly and do take a tour through Bergdorf Goodman for a luxurious NYC shopping experience or just to gloat over the intricate windows (especially during Christmas). If you’re in the mood for small sweets, be sure to hit up Laduree for divine macarons and ornate pastry sculptures.
2. Hong Kong
Hong Kong is really the most incredible amalgamation of old and new world. The cityscape ceaselessly amazes, the food scene is equally as good, and the commute options feel infinite (with the addition of the ferry rides). From the bustling city life to the tranquil rawness, there’s much to see, eat, and do.
When in Hong Kong, dim sum is a must and Dim Dim Sum takes the cake with their great variety and most adorable custard buns. If you have a crazy obsession with Chinese Baos like we do, be sure to drop in Little Bao for the best ever selection. However, if you’re more into that peking duck, Island Tang is definitely the winner. To land a sumptuous Hong Kong experience, set some time aside for afternoon tea at
The Peninsula – they offer a decadent plate of little pastries and canapes. The tea though really is that good!
For a bit of old world culture, you’ll be dazzled by the charms and antiques you find at the Cat Street Markets. If you’re more so looking to get a serene view of the beautiful slopes, take a hike up the Dragons Back.
For a wide view of the Hong Kong coastline, the inexpensive Star Ferry will give you quite the exposure. If you’re looking for little souvenirs or gifts, Loveramics has the best collection of ceramics that do the job. You can also indulge in the night life by promenading the streets of Wan Chai – the drink and gift shops are sure to keep you up all night.
We’ve never actually been to Madrid, but always find ourselves lusting over the exquisite backdrops of our friends at Cup of Couple. If we ever get the chance to go, we know what fun things we’ll be taking in…
Sacha seems to be the place where chefs dine and after perusing the reviews and images, it’s easy to see why – seemingly delicious homestyle cooking that makes us froth at the mouth. The contemporary, high-ceilings at Bosco de Lobos alone make this place enticing, but the modern American-Italian cuisine looks even better! Lastly, we know tapas is mandatory when in Spain and TriCiclo looks like the perfect place for them.
Sight seeing is always a must wherever we go and the facades along Gran Via look like the place to be. We also always hear about the breathtaking rooftop bars, so we’d be interested in hopping over to La Terazza del Urban to get a shot of the skylines and old city center.
We’ve learned from experience that the local markets are the best way to immerse in the culture and food of a particular area so we’d definitely hit up the Mercado de San Miguel. With that said, we’d also hit up Rastro Market – one of the oldest markets in Europe.
Did we miss anything you’d recommend? If you’ve been to any of these cities, we’d love to hear all about it!
Travel supported by Cathay Pacific Airlines.