I am Natasha, born and raised in the largest country in the world, country of the greatest cultural heritage and full of natural wonders, Russia. Now I am based in another part of the world, in Guadalajara, Mexico, living here with the love of my life. Travelling made me who I am, travelling I met my husband, travelling I realized the idea of happiness. I live in a wonderful world that is full of beauty, charm and adventure, and I am feeling home in each corner of our planet. I am not full-time traveler, but full-time adventurer, exploring every day something new, even if I am not moving from my neighborhood. There is no end to the adventures that we can have if only we seek them with our eyes open. Have your heart always open to emotions, never be afraid of changes, be grateful for everything you have, keep harmony in soul, do what you enjoy to do, give love to feel love, fulfill your mind meeting new people, exploring new countries, feeling new emotions, tasting new food. Travel enriches life.
1.) Blue mosque, Istanbul, Turkey
Istanbul inspires from the first step to its lands. Delicious street food, hospitality of local people, ancient rituals, smell of spices and fresh fish and of course sounds of minarets. The Blue Mosque is surely the most impressive touristic experience while in Istanbul. There is no way to describe its beauty and peaceful harmony that you feel inside. It simply must be seen to be truly appreciated.
Insider Tip: Besides being tourist attraction, it’s also an active mosque, so it’s closed to non-worshippers for a half hour during the five daily prayers, so it’s better to plan your visit for mid-morning, don’t forget to cover your head and take off shoes, remain quiet and respectful and enjoy this stunning beauty.
2.) Cappadocia, Turkey
Have to see it to believe it. Nature and history blend together to make this place breathtaking. Cappadocia is pure magic at any time of a day. Start with sleeping in a real cave. There are plenty of cave hotels and it’s must do if you are in Cappadocia. In early morning be ready for the most fascinating experience. Hundreds of air balloons fill the sky in the planet of Cappadocia.
Insider tip: During the day explore the surreal landscapes, take a tour to the most famous nature sights or make 6 or 10 km route in a rouse valley, making stops on authentic cafes and for great pics.
3.) Pamukkale, Turkey
Visiting Pamukkale was a highlight during my travel to Turkey. This is a stunning natural sight that looks like hot snow dessert. Travertine terrace is formed of calcium and mineral content. Don’t miss ancient ruins of Hierapolis and swimming in Cleopatra thermal pool.
Insider Tip: I would recommend getting there early in the morning before hundreds of tourists and have full day if possible to explore and absorb.
4.) Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque, Abu Dhabi, UAE
Sheikh Zayed Mosque is the entry landmark of Abu Dhabi. No one photo can capture the beauty and serenity of it, it’s just enormous, perfect and luxurious. The pure white structure, huge shining chandeliers, the golden carvings on walls all around, the largest handmade carpet, blue water pools: it’s breathtakingly beautiful and highly spiritual place.
Insider Tip: Try to wear decent clothing, else Anaya is provided free of charge in exchange of id proof.
Petra or rose city is one of the most spectacular places on the face of the planet. Being here is an experience of a lifetime, standing on such an incredible ruins, that saw several civilizations and religions, is a unique feeling. What if these walls could talk? 4 years ago in Petra daily arrived 4000 tourist, now less than hundred. People are afraid to go. It’s sad and unfair, because Jordan is magnificent country, with amazing people, incredible heritage and natural beauty, and it’s SAFE. Visit Jordan, let this country come into your heart.
6.) Santorini, Greece
This Cyclades Island in the Aegean Sea is one of the most romantic places in the world. Santorini has unique landscape, recognized for even those who never been there: white houses topped with blue half-spheres carved into cliffs. Got lost in tiny streets of Oia, find the best place to watch the sunset at Oias Castle. Eat street food, drink wine, smile to local people, explore black volcanic beaches. Time stops in Santorini, it’s a piece of harmony in the world.
7.) Venice, Italy
Venice is one and only, connected by 177 canals and 409 bridges. It’s a heaven for all romantics of the world. There is so much to see in this enchanting city, known worldwide for its amazing art, architecture, culture. But wandering in the streets is the best of all experiences. Don’t be in a rush trying to see everything in Venice. The best you can do is take a ride in gondola, choose a good wine for dinner and walk back from the restaurant at night, feeling the life, color and history of this very special city.
8.) Playa del Carmen, Mexico
Playa del Carmen used to be a fishing village, now it’s a modern, hippy and extremely touristic town in Caribbean. Once visited, you’ll fall in love. There are so many activities here, that a week will be not enough to explore. Visit ancient ruins of Tulum, meet with Mexican culture in thematic parks,( Xcaret is the best of all), try fish tacos in hundreds of street restaurants, dive in vibrant waters of Caribbean, go clubbing till sunrise and feel unique, free atmosphere of Playa.
9.) Machu Picchu, Peru
The unforgettable experience starts with train raid, right next to huge river and high peaks all around, most gorgeous road in our lives. No words can describe what it is like when you have your first view to the lost city of Incas. It’s the most spiritual, magnificent and inspiring site I’ve ever seen. There are no facts about this place, just mysteries. Who built it, when and why, why people left their city, how they cut blocks of stones, that they fit perfectly, even a blade of grass fits between the stones. How many centuries-old secrets are trapped in walls of Machu Picchu? The only thing that is clear that this place has incredible vibes and energy. Don’t try to choose the best time to visit Machu Picchu, it’s always full of tourists. But don’t worry, just stop and breathe fresh mountain air, enjoy the most mysterious site and feel its energy.
10.) Goa, India
Actually, there is nothing extraordinary in Goa, no breathtaking sites, no incredible landscapes. But Goa has something that no one place in the world has – its atmosphere of incredible freedom, no prohibitions, no rules, pure happiness and lazy way of life. It is a perfect place to escape from reality. Wake up with sunrise to practice yoga in endless coastline, then take you bike and go to the center to buy a bottle of fresh juice for 1$, here in “Juices” is a meeting point for all foreigner hippy population of Goa, make friends and meet again to see sunset. Everyday sunset party is another icon of Goa. Forget who you are, what you wear, just be carefree in this part of the world.
Follow more of Natasha’s travels on Instagram