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101 Reasons to Travel Now: Urban Finds

We've scoured the globe in search of hidden gems to experience around the world. Check out this list of insider finds in the world's great cities.

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Hong Kong's skyline lights gleam against a dark night.


From the October 2015 issue of Traveler magazine

Reasons to Travel Now: 67-84

67. CAR-FREE SIENA:

Less flashy than Rome or Florence, always innovative Siena was first among Italian cities to ban cars from most of its old-town center.

68. SYMPHONY OF LIGHTS:

This synchronized sound-and-light show illuminates buildings on both sides of Hong Kong’s Victoria Harbour each night at 8 p.m.

69. MEXICO CITY SUBWAY TICKET:

At many subway stations in Mexico’s capital, do ten squats at a special machine and you’ll get a free ticket to ride.

70. KENNEDY CENTER'S MILLENIUM STAGE:

Nightly at 6 p.m., this Washington, D.C., temple of culture hosts performers such as steel-pan drummers and dance groups.

71. 'WEEKDAY WANDERLUST"

San Francisco’s monthly travel-writer speaker series packs the Library Bar of the Hotel Rex with a collegial mix of trip tales and cocktails.

72. SPIFFIER ROME:

The Pyramid, Colosseum, Trevi Fountain, and Domus Aurea (Emperor Nero’s villa) all show off much needed—and tasteful—touch-ups. Next: the Spanish Steps.

73. REAL MEXICO:

The revived colonial mining town Real de Catorce offers 17th-century churches and buildings (some converted into hotels and restaurants) and horse rides into peyote country.

74. MOTOR CITY MIDTOWN:

Detroit’s Midtown hood lures “eds and meds” from the nearby college and hospital with made-here watches and high-end bicycles (Shinola), quirky crafts (City Bird), and local beer (Motor City Brewing Works).

75. MUMMERS PARADE, PHILADELPHIA:

Greet New Year’s Day with brilliantly feathered pageantry, now in its 116th year.

76. REST LIKE ROYALTY:

London’s fourth-generation, family-owned Goring Hotel features not only a complete designer revamp but also a royal warrant from Queen Elizabeth II for hospitality services.

77. BLISS OUT, MOROCCAN STYLE:

With its orange-blossom-scented massages, Les Bains de Marrakech provides a luxurious respite from dusty streets and souks.

78. RAISE YOUR GLASS:

Szimpla Kért started Budapest’s “ruin bar” trend in Hungary when it opened in 2002, and it remains cool as ever with its good food and beer in dilapidated open-air courtyards.

79. RICHARD III's NEW GRAVE:

The mortal remains of the infamous English king were recently reinterred at Leicester Cathedral.

80. CANADA'S ELLIS ISLAND:

Genealogy buffs have a field day at the newly expanded Canadian Museum of Immigration at Pier 21, in popular port of call Halifax.

81. HIPSTER JOBURG:

Maboneng Precinct, in Johannesburg, South Africa, fills converted warehouses and onetime factories with galleries, cafés, and the best people-watching in town.

82. QUINTESSENTIAL JAPANESE TEAHOUSE:

Near Kyoto’s Kodaiji Temple, sit and sip at ultratraditional Rakusho, with its garden, lanterns, and pond of koi fish.

83. ALPACA APPAREL:

Cloud-soft sweaters go for cheap at San Telmo market in Buenos Aires, where Argentine dealers in knitwear set up every Sunday.

84. TRIBAL TEXTILES:

In riverside Luang Prabang, Laos, watch skilled women weave, tie dye, and batik fabric at the Ock Pop Tok workshop, then take a half-day crafting class.

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