In the 2,000 years since Caesar Augustus laid one of Ljubljana’s first stones, then for a settlement called Emona, this city has often hidden in plain sight. No longer: As Slovenia’s capital cheers its bimillenary throughout 2014, it’s putting its treasures on parade.

Washington, D.C.’s National Gallery of Art is an awesome trove, but approaching it requires planning. Most of the gallery’s art is not on display at any one time, of course, but some spectacular pieces always are, and they provide the best starting point. Here are ten must-see works recommended by curator Eric Denker.

Despite its size, London is a very kid-friendly city. Almost 40 percent of the capital is dedicated to parks and public spaces, and major museums are free. The only problem is there’s so much to see. Here are some of the highlights.

Not to knock Dubrovnik, with its marble streets, 16th-century city walls, sparkling red roof tiles, and primo location—it more than earns its moniker of “Pearl of the Adriatic,” not to mention its UNESCO World Heritage status. But if you cross Croatia off your list after you’ve seen Dubrovnik, you’re missing out on a lot. Here…

After a thoroughly East Coast childhood, Avery Stonich traded Boston for Boulder in 1988. Once she experienced the city locals lovingly refer to as the “People’s Republic of Boulder,” she never looked back. This outdoor enthusiast and freelance adventure and travel writer has more than 40 countries under her belt, but still thinks Boulder is among the greatest places on Earth. Here are a few of her favorite things about her hometown of choice.

“Every traveler has a special place, a home away from home,” says National Geographic Traveler editor at large Daisann McLane. “Old Bangkok is mine.” Here’s her insider’s guide to preparing for your trip and what you should do and see once you’re on the ground to experience the rich culture of everyday Thai life.

The plains? Hardly. A solo drive through the Dakotas proves big on personality.

There’s a reason that the Wright brothers picked the Outer Banks to take their first flight: reliable breezes, wide open, non-vegetated spaces, and 100-foot dunes—the tallest on the Atlantic coast—where even novices can fly safely before alighting in soft sand. Your first flight in a hang glider “might just change your life,” says Andy Torrington, who has been teaching the sport near Kitty Hawk, North Carolina, since 1991.

There are some amazing events on tap all over the world, all the time. Here’s a taste of what you can see and do in September.

Like their American counterparts, the cowboys, France’s gardians cut a dashing figure and loom large in the culture of the southern France. Part of a brotherhood formed in the early 16th century, the gardians are the caretakers of the herds of beautiful gray horses and black bulls that roam the largely unfenced Camargue region.

Michigander Luke Lienau’s relationship with Macau began in 2002 with a visit to see his girlfriend, a native of the Chinese Special Administrative Region. In the course of traveling back and forth for nearly a decade, he became fascinated with the city and its changes. When Luke finally decided to move to be with his now-wife…

Out of the Ashes: Valparaíso

Though just 70 miles south of Chile’s capital, Santiago, Valparaíso is a destination in its own right. The port city’s economy may not be what it was, but the vibrant culture you’ll find there remains, despite a flagging maritime trade and earthquakes that have shaken it to its core. As the city and its people rebuild and heal after a catastrophic fire claimed homes and lives, there has never been a better time to visit. Here’s why.

The Roman Empire may have fallen off the map centuries ago, but to a modern traveler, the center of Italy’s capital city may feel just as vast. While walkable, distances between monuments within Rome’s historic core can be a haul—made worse if the tiny, twisty streets turn your sense of direction to mush. The city…

Tea reigns in Darjeeling, where life is marked by the four harvest seasons: first flush in spring, the second flush in June, monsoon season (yes, it’s a tea season) July-August, and the autumn flush from October into November. No matter how you take your cuppa, here’s a short and sweet guide to visiting this world-renowned tea mecca.

Virginia may be for lovers, as the commonwealth famously claims on its license plates, but it’s also for travelers eager to experience the simplicity of the country life. Here are three rural paradises worthy of enthusiastic praise.

Asin Sharma is a Kathmandu native whose love for her home city has only grown over time. To be sure, this passion drove Asin to pursue a career as a writer for NepalAdvisor.com, but that doesn’t mean she doesn’t indulge her wanderlust once in a while. “I love traveling alone with a map in my hand…and an adventure right in front of me,” Asin admits. But her heart will always be in Kathmandu. Here are a few of her favorite things about the culturally rich capital she calls home.

If there is one aroma that unifies Liguria—the region that arcs along Italy’s northwestern coast, joining France to Italy, Alps to sea—it’s Genovese basil.

You can’t say “Walla Walla” aloud and not feel a bit happier. Try it. Though most of us haven’t given a thought to visiting this pleasingly alliterative town in southeastern Washington (population 32,000), increasingly visitors are driving the four hours from Seattle or Portland to see what’s there. Many arrive with a smirk or low expectations, but leave with plans to return. Here’s why.

Georgians say that when God divided Earth’s land among its peoples, the Georgians showed up late, drunk. They’d been toasting and praising him, they claimed. God so liked this excuse that he gave them his own land: the most fertile of all. Here’s a brief insider’s guide to this cultural crossroads in the Caucasus.  …

When the Birthplace of Country Music opened in August of 2014, the Smithsonian-affiliated museum let the world in on a secret musicians have known for generations: The roots of American music run deep in Bristol, a onetime Appalachian railroad boomtown straddling the Tennessee-Virginia border.

Marta Macedo was born and raised in Porto and came to realize just how much she loved her city while she was studying abroad. “People may live their lives trying to figure out where their home is,” she says. “Being away made me realize that Porto truly is home for me.” After traveling the world, Marta returned to her beloved port city and started sharing her hometown pride on Spotted by Locals. Here are a few of her favorite things about Portugal’s second largest city.

I have never received as many concerned messages as I did on a recent trip to Egypt. The nation has made headlines lately, and few have been positive. Realities on the ground in Luxor, though, were different.

The first national park east of the Mississippi, Acadia National Park comprises nearly 50,000 acres of rocky coastline in southern Maine. This glorious patchwork of parkland, private property, and seaside villages seasonally fills with what residents call “the summer people”—visitors getting their fill of the scenic splendor and serenity that Acadia has to offer in spades. Here’s an insider’s guide to New England’s crown jewel written by one of the park rangers that knows it best.

The fastest-growing water sport in the world, stand-up paddle boarding (SUP) was born in the Hawaiian Islands, and with calm jungle rivers and 50 miles of beaches, Kauai is one of the best places for the sport. Here’s the why and how.

Helen Davies may hail from the United Kingdom, but after an extended solo journey around Africa in her 20s, she fell in love with the continent. In fact, Zambia impressed her so much she ended up moving there to become an expedition leader and tour guide. Nowadays, she divides her time between Africa and the U.K. and documents her travels on her blog to help others uncover the best the world has to offer. Here are a few things about Livingstone, the city Helen calls her “second home.”