A desert escape where there are no rules

(CNN) — Qataris are proud of their gleaming, ultramodern capital Doha, but their hearts are still in the desert. Each weekend in the winter months, families cram their four-wheel drives with camping gear and travel to the deserts, which envelop much of the Gulf state. Dune bashing and camping under a canopy of stars are weekend highlights for many. As is lazing on the sandy shore of the Inland Sea

Katara: The center of Qatar’s creative scene

(CNN) — It’s the ornamental plants and immaculate green lawns rolling over the man-made dunes at Katara Cultural Village that first catch the eye. Once inside the labyrinth of narrow, cobbled passageways, a sense of grandeur and escape takes over. Built on reclaimed land on the coastal edge of Doha, the bespoke complex has become the beating heart of Qatar’s creative scene since its opening in 2010. A unique “village”

Around the world with carry-on luggage only

(CNN) — She has visited every corner of the world, but photographer Jill Paider always travels light — with only a carry-on case as luggage. Paider has traveled everywhere, from Guatemala to Tokyo and all places in between, photographing her adventures along the way. Now she’s has written about her experiences in a new book, “Carry-On Only.” “The goal was to, part one, document it and keep a record of

Fly from Tokyo to Paris without leaving the ground

(CNN) — Imagine jet-setting from Tokyo to Paris, enjoying first-class travel, a four-course dinner and a city tour — all without leaving the ground. This isn’t a sci-fi fantasy. This is the future of air travel according to Japanese company First Airlines, which has harnessed the power of virtual reality to create dream vacations. Passengers avoid the costly airport transfer, the baggage fees or busy airport terminal — and instead

Where to eat in London’s Chinatown

(CNN) — The lanes around Gerrard Street in London’s Soho are crammed as tightly with Asian restaurants as fillings in a Chinese dumpling, with the results just as delicious. This is London’s Chinatown, an Asian community hub since the 1950s, and one of the most fun and diverse places to eat in central London — if you know where to look. In what’s one of the city’s most touristy destinations

13 hot reasons to visit Qatar right now

(CNN) — Qatar connects to 100 different destinations, making it an extremely busy transit spot. In fact, Hamad International Airport has fast become the global gateway for overseas travelers. So if you’re scheduled to make a stop and are looking to break up your long-haul flight, why not tack on a few days to your travels and explore this tiny Gulf nation? It’s not only one of the safest countries

Zanzibar’s $1,150-a-night Millionaire’s Island

(CNN) — Often referred to as the “Spice Islands”, the archipelago of Zanzibar is made up of a necklace of islands that bead their way down the shore of East Africa, off the coast of Tanzania. There’s the main island, which has a UNESCO World Heritage Site for its capital, sister island Pemba, with its extensive clove plantations and the neighboring Mafia Archipelago, known for its majestic coral reefs and

Traveling the world, one beautiful moment at a time

(CNN) — What’s your definition of a beautiful moment? Is it time spent with family, or a solitary walk? A major life event, or an everyday triumph? Blogger Janne Willems finds all these instances beautiful — and she would know. Willems travels the world searching for perfect moments. The Dutch native approaches strangers, hands them an index card and asks them to draw or write about a moment that touched

11 amazing places to visit in the Czech Republic

(CNN) — The Czech Republic is a destination straight out of fairy tales. With an array of picturesque historic cities, world-class architecture, romantic castles and charming natural wonders, this Central European country should definitely be on every travel list. Covering an area of just 78,866 square kilometers, it boasts an impressive 12 UNESCO World Heritage sites. Fascinating, affordable and filled with beautiful sights, the Czech Republic is a magnificent destination

In Thailand’s Phang Nga Bay, a luxury resort with a conscience

(CNN) — Thailand’s Phang Nga Bay is home to unrivaled natural beauty. A string of limestone cliffs and small islands juts through the azure waters of the Andaman Sea like sleeping giants, creating a stunning visual dance between land and sea. Perhaps the most luxurious way to experience the area is with a stay at the Six Senses Yao Noi, located on a large island between Krabi and Phuket. Related