Guanajuato Is The Coolest and My Most Favorite City In Mexico

Time to Fully Enjoy: 11 minutesThis could be the ‘fresh car smell’ effect that ultimately wears off, but Guanajuato simply has this charm that really makes it a cool city to venture around, and potentially stay in, for atleast 3-4 weeks.

What I really enjoyed about the city was driving into for the first time, and being enveloped in the complex tunnel system that runs beneath the streets, and through the mountain sides that surround the city.

Once you walk through the city, everything felt very well centralized and compact into the center, with streets winding about like snakes, up and down the hills, through narrow streets, stairs, and alleyways that can only fit a bike or a person or two.

Guanajuato felt like what a city in Italy feels like, surrounded by mountains on all sides, and contradictory to where you would put a city, it somehow exists, and prospers.

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Epic Mexico Road Trip: Aguascalientes, San Luis Potosi, San Miguel De Allende & Leon

Time to Fully Enjoy: 14 minutesAfter venturing in mexico’s second largest city: Guadalajara, I returned back to my accommodations in Nuevo Vallarta, Mexico to continue working.

After a few more weeks of working, and enjoying the beach & resort lifestyle, it was time to continue venturing into the unknown of Mexico.

So I took only my backpack, and bought a $60 USD flight into the parts where most foreigners don’t go.

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Guadalajara, Mexico’s Second Biggest City (150+ Photos)

Time to Fully Enjoy: 11 minutesOriginally, settled in 1532, the site of Guadalajara was relocated 5 times due to several major issues such as a lack of water, a dry and inhospitable land, hostile indigenous tribes who kept attacking for years, and a leader who just didn’t like the location.

Finally, by 1542, after almost a decade of unsuccessful attempts, Guadalajara was officially settled in its new and current location at the ‘Teatro (Theatre) Degollado’.

Yet, by 1543, a contingency of indigenous tribes waged war against the city, due to the savage treatment of the indigenous people as slaves under the spaniard ‘Nuño de Guzmán’. The war ended only after ‘Nuño de Guzmán’ agreed to release the indigenous slaves.

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The Taj Mahal Was OK, But The Agra Fort in Agra, India Is Amazing!

Time to Fully Enjoy: 9 minutesWhile the Taj Mahal is one of the most iconic locations in the world to take a selfie in, I have to admit that the Agra Fort was a much more enjoyable and breathtaking artifact of history.

It’s kind of how the ‘Mona Lisa’ painting is a tiny over-rated painting (metaphorical Taj Mahal) in the Louvre Museum in France, yet when you look behind yourself in the same room, you see a REALLY stunning painting of an epic scale (metaphorical Agra Fort).

Oh, and the squirrels in the Agra Fort will literally climb you up and down looking for food.

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Capilano Suspension Bridge, Vancouver, Canada

Time to Fully Enjoy: 4 minutesThis is a major tourist destination in North Vancouver, that has a 140 meter long (460 feet) suspension bridge that is 76 meters (230 feet) above the Capilano river.

The bridge was originally built in 1899 using hemp and wood, but was upgraded to a wire cable in 1903.

By 1935, various local tribes were invited to place their totems in the park for an added theme.

In 2004, the second major section, the ‘Tree Tops Adventure’, was added, consisting of footbridges attached to the gigantic ‘fir’ trees.

This is a nice place to visit, and walk around for 2-3 hours, and just enjoy the mixture of nature and man-made suspension bridges and pathways.

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Beaches of Mexico – Nuevo Vallarta, Sayulita, Litibu, Boca De Tomatlan

Time to Fully Enjoy: 10 minutesThe entire area of Vallarta (and a bit further beyond), features some really incredible, picturesque beaches, great for adventure, building sand castles, and just retiring as many pensioners and ex-pats have done.

You can fulfill all your hopes and dreams of: sitting on the sand and burning your skin away, fattening up on endless buffets and cocktails at resorts, adventure into some coastal jungles and villages, and to touch horses and seeing a fat kid riding a donkey on his way to work (photo included).

In this post, I will cover 4 beaches:

– Nuevo Vallarta
– Sayulita
– Litibu
– and the ultimate: Boca De Tomatlan

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The Ultra Gentrified Colonial City of Puerto Vallarta Photos (120+ Photos)

Time to Fully Enjoy: 10 minutesIn 1963, a major American motion picture was being filmed in ‘Puerto Vallarta’, which involved famous actors and actresses of the time – the film is called ‘La Noche De La Iguana’ (The night of the Iguana).

The main actor (Richard Burton) and actress (Elizabeth Taylor), while still married to other people, had a sexual relationship.

This caused wide-spread media fervor in the United States, resulting in an EXPLOSION of curious tourists, and media personnel, who were excited to know about this beautiful, lust-inducing place in the world.

Thus, from 1965 and onward, the government of Jalisco approved massive construction efforts to upgrade the port town into a massive resort city, including an airport, electricity, roads, bridges, and other infrastructure.

By 2000, the population was about 71,000, but by 2010, it had exploded to 255,000. A huge chunk of those being foreigners from Canada and the United states.

About 2.5 million tourists visit Puerto Vallarta (and its surrounding regions) every year, thus making it the 3rd most popular destination in Mexico.

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Travelling in the Ancient City of Samarkand, Uzbekistan

Time to Fully Enjoy: 11 minutesDue to constant tribal in-fighting and the advancements of ship technology, the ancient silk road became an impractical and unsafe method of transporting goods.

So, from 1720, Samarkand became a ruinous wasteland dotted by ancient architecture, with no one living there.

By 1865, the Russian empire had captured Khiva, Bukhara, and Samarkand, and ran a railroad next to the city by 1888, at which point economic and cultural activities resumed.

From 1924-1934, the soviets had recaptured most territories of the old Russian empire, and made Samarkand the capital of the Uzbek Soviet Socialist Republic.

The beauty of Samarkand falls unto its gigantic 14-20th century Madrassahs, mosques and tombs that were built during the empire of Amir Timur and his children.

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The Ancient City of Bukhara, Uzbekistan (130+ Photos)

Time to Fully Enjoy: 10 minutesThe history of Bukhara goes back about 2500 years, with the initial settlements of the Aryan people.

It was a major city within the Persian empire from 600 BCE, but eventually a Turkic population overthrew the locals.

By the 9th, and 10th century, the Samanid empire (an Iranian Islamic empire) conquered the city and Bukhara became the intellectual capital of the Islamic world.

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Khiva, Uzbekistan Reminds Me Of The City in Aladdin, Agrabah (100+ Photos)

Time to Fully Enjoy: 9 minutesKhiva’s true rise to fame was through its intensive slave trade, at peak having over 30,000 Persian and Kurdish slaves, and 3000 Russian slaves kidnapped from the southern areas of Russia.

By the 1850’s the Russian government was well aware of it’s people being kidnapped in cities such as Orenburg. But at the time, the Tsar was busy consolidating his power in St. Petersburg and the rest of Russia.

By the early 1870’s, Russia used the pretext of ‘Russian slaves in Khiva’ to stage a strategic military advance and invasion (Although the real goal was to capture British controlled Afghanistan, and ultimately, India).

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Getting A Visa To Uzbekistan, Exploring Tashkent And Uzbekistan History (100+ Photos)

Time to Fully Enjoy: 12 minutesWhichever way you look, Uzbekistan is surrounded by 5 countries: Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, and Afghanistan.

Since 1991, one man has basically controlled Uzbekistan, under a mostly dictatorship-style government, while initiating a post-soviet reformation from absolute chaos and anarchy.

As of 2017, a new president is now in office, and is seeking to liberalize the entire country by apologizing for past mistakes, giving large economic incentives for international investments, establishing communication presidents from other countries, and allowing the Islamic religion more room to flourish.

Within the next several years, Uzbekistan will most definitely be a prime tourism and investment destination for many foreigners.

Oh, and Tashkent is the capital of Uzbekistan 🙂

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Kyrgyzstan City & Outback Adventures

Time to Fully Enjoy: 7 minutesThe flight from Almaty was less than $100 USD and took only 1 hour.

But upon trying to land the plane in Kyrgyzstan… we didn’t land, so the pilot made a big circle around the airport, and tried to land again… but couldn’t… for a total of 3 failed landing attempts.

After the 3rd failed attempt, tensions in the body were rising… would the plane have enough fuel to land in another airport? Were we going to crash and burn in the Kyrgyz mountains? 

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Adventures & History in Almaty, Kazakhstan

Time to Fully Enjoy: 7 minutesAfter my 3-4 day stop in Astana, Kazakhstan, I decided to take a $95 USD flight down to Almaty, Kazakhstan (the former capital of Kazakhstan).

You can either take a train for about 15 hours, or a 2 hour flight… Obviously the flight was the better option.

Long story short, I ended up staying in Almaty for almost a month, and had an epic adventure into the mountains of Shymbulak.

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Plyos, Russia – A Provincial Town For Art & Relaxation

Time to Fully Enjoy: 5 minutesJust like yourself, I had no idea what Plyos was, or why someone would go there. It is almost in the middle of nowhere in Russia, and has a very small population of about 2300 (according to wikipedia).

What you get to see in Plyos, is a beautifully scenic town by the river… old-Russian style.

About 120 years ago, a Russian painter from Moscow, Isaac Levitan, came across the hills of this town, and decided to start painting it all.

Upon displaying and selling his paintings back in Moscow, Isaac Levitan became incredibly famous, and the town of Plyos became a ‘Dacha’ or Cottage resort town.

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The Ancient Russian City of Suzdal

Time to Fully Enjoy: 4 minutesIn 1864, local merchants failed to convince the town to build the trans-siberian railway through it.

Thus the town remained a religious backwater village, and was bypassed completely by the industrialization of the 20th century.

The beauty of the town is in its reminder of an older time in Russian history, with its magnificent churches, and many wooden houses.

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33 MORE AWESOME USSR/Communist Propaganda Posters

Time to Fully Enjoy: 4 minutesWhile exploring Moscow, I stumbled upon these amazing posters from mid-century USSR / Communist Russia.

These came from a time, when the media was completely controlled by the government. Thus they could shape, direct, and force the minds of millions of people in any direction they wanted.

Thus, one day the USSR is friends with Nazi Germany, and the next, they are bloody, savage, and ruthless enemies.

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The Most Difficult City To Visit In Europe: Minsk Photos

Time to Fully Enjoy: 5 minutes“Minsk, The Most Difficult City To Visit In Europe” is actually the title of a Minsk vlog review I posted back in October of 2016.

I stayed in Minsk for a total of 3 weeks in 2016 (1 week, then 2 additional weeks), and decided that it was an awesome city to visit… if you could get in.

For many years, the Visa process for many people was a headache, which prevented extensive amounts of income from tourism.

As an interesting side note, Minsk was COMPLETELY destroyed by the German army in World War 2.

Thus, everything you see in these photos, was built after the war.

A lot of Minsk was re-built by prisoners of war as well.

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33 Translated World War 2 USSR/Communist Propaganda Posters

Time to Fully Enjoy: 3 minutesWhile wandering around Yekaterinburg, Russia – Home of Russia’s First President, there was a fun exhibit on the streets, featuring Communist propaganda against the Nazi’s in World War 2.

Since I loved playing WW2 video games as a kid, and watching a good WW2 about the epic Eastern Front (Russians vs. Germans), I was quite excited to share these Translated World War 2 USSR/Communist Propaganda Posters.

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