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5 Major World Cities You Must See

The world is vast and filled with interesting people and places to travel. Every continent and every country has beauty and numerous cultural experiences waiting for you to discover. If you’re thinking about taking a trip this season, here are some places you may want to consider.

1) Amsterdam

Home of Anne Frank, Rembrandt, and for a brief time, Vincent Van Gogh, this city pays homage to illustrious history. But it is not stuck in the past. Amsterdam boasts many contemporary artists and even hosts an annual Amsterdam Art Weekend every November where current artists showcase their work throughout the city. While you're visiting, check out a jazz concert (they are happening all the time) and don't forget to leave time to walk along the many canals.

2) Luang Prabang

For somewhere genuinely exotic, visit this little-known gem in Laos. The ancient capital of Laos, it is a beauty to the eyes and a real adventure for those who love to seek. Hike through the jungle and take a slow boat on the Mekong River. Luang Prabang lends inspiration to the photographer and a thrill for the wanderer. Be sure to visit the nightly Handicraft Market for a peek into some authentic souvenirs. Oh, and since you should know how to pronounce a place you're considering visiting, it's lwahng prah-bahng.

3) Barcelona

While there are endless things to do in Barcelona, this is one city that will leave you breathless. Located along the Mediterranean Sea, you can dip your toes in the water anytime. The tapas are filling, the siestas relaxing, and impressions left by Picasso and Gaudi unique and lasting. Be sure to visit the Gothic Quarter (the oldest part of Barcelona), and Las Ramblas (a market with everything from grapes to art and lively entertainment), as well as the Barcelona Museum of Contemporary Art.

4) London

While London is a well-known place, it is still fascinating to the traveler, and always full of new adventures. A hub for art and shopping, with a punk scene like nowhere else (check out Camden Lock Market), Harry Potter has now given the city a new right to not-so-plain and pure fun. Visiting London is like going to a place you thought knew well but realize you didn't. While there, you can also hop on a bus and enjoy day trips to the other-worldly Bath, Oxford, and Stratford-upon-Avon.

5) Rio de Janeiro

For those who love color and water, history, and endless nightlife, Rio de Janeiro is the place to be. Even if you're not there for Carnaval, you will encounter sure festivity as the music is always for dancing, the food is likely rich and spicy, and the culture is inviting. Start the day with a traditionally light and early Brazilian breakfast, and head off on the Rocinha Favela Walking Tour for a genuine look at everyday Rio. Take the Street Art Tour for a look at how folk art has influenced the city, and end your day with a sunset cruise on the Lagoa de Merapendi.

Traveling is such a great way to ensure spontaneous fun. Make it an annual tradition and choose a new country every year. Surely, you will find new beauty.