A religion with a sum of believers estimated to number 350 million, Buddhism is the fourth-largest religion in the world, and it is observed in countries as diverse as Vietnam, China, Japan and the USA.
A religion that teaches peace, harmony and enlightenment, one of its largest celebrations takes place in May, when people who follow the Mahayana branch of the faith celebrate and pray on the date said to mark Prince Siddhartha Gautama's birth.
South Korean Carnivals
A country with a sizeable Buddhist population, Korea's take on the celebration of Buddha's Birthday is an exciting experience. Known as "seokga tansinil", the majority of the country's population join approximately 15 million ...
Set among rolling hills and forests, the Lithuanian capital of Vilnius is a place unlike many other northern European cities. Nestled between Germany, Poland and Latvia, the Baltic nation's capital exudes medieval mystery and baroque classicism, making the city an enjoyable place for a weekend retreat, or a cultural stop-off for those touring Lithuania as a whole.
If there is one thing that Vilnius is known for across the world, it is its baroque spires, colonnades and exquisite architectural carvings. The city is home to one of Europe's largest baroque old towns, with the combination of winding streets, diverse facades and a delightful street culture that could easily ...
With the cool air of winter migrating south for another year, in April and May, Asia opens its arms and welcomes in the dawn of a fresh new spring. As well as heralding bright blossoms and rising temperatures, for many countries, this time of year is extra special, with New Year's festivals occurring in several countries throughout the continent.
From Vietnam to Japan, spring echoes a feeling of hope, thanks and excitement – which makes it the perfect time for any traveller to head to the east and experience something new.
As the sun rises high and the winter frost thaws, every year, millions of people enjoy the traditional Japanese custom of Hanami. Translated into English, Hanami ...
There is something to be said for throwing off the shackles of the everyday and enjoying a delightful spa break. In the luxuriant surroundings of the spa, sumptuous treatments and a keen attention to detail come together to produce a symphony of relaxation, although as with most things in this world, there are a select few spa experiences that are a cut above the norm.
Sun-bleached, white sands, a spectacularly blue sky and the perfectly azure waters of the Indian Ocean form the backdrop of Velassaru. Located in the characteristically relaxing Maldives, this exceptional resort is designed in a minimalist manner that takes into account the island's jungle-like environment ...
As a city, Dalian offers plenty to both domestic and international travellers looking to explore northeast China. With plenty of parks and rolling green hills, Dalian presents something of a unique and cosmopolitan environment – and there is plenty to explore.
Just like Hong Kong, Shanghai and Qingdao, Dalian too has had to break free from colonial occupation. But where it was Britain in the case of Hong Kong and Germany in that of Qingdao, for Dalian, its colonials arrived in the form of Russia and later, Japan.
In 1950, Dalian was renamed Luda City by the Communist regime, but in 1984, when the city opened up to foreign investment, it once again became Dalian – the title ...
For a night spent in the most stylish of manners, few activities rival an evening that includes a visit to the theatre. Sumptuous surroundings, thrilling performances and the excitement of the live music experience are all excellent reasons to visit any theatre, and there is also something to be said for visiting the world's best theatrical locations too.
The Bolshoi, Moscow
Opened in 1856 on Tsar Alexander II's coronation day and designed by Joseph Bové, Moscow's Bolshoi Theatre is one of the most well-known cultural institutions in the world.
The beautiful neoclassical columned building is home to excellent performances of ballet, opera and classical music that cannot be enjoyed anywhere ...
Although its origins can be traced back to Roman times, May Day celebrations have a distinct and traditional feeling wherever they are being held.
Taking place on the first day of May, every year millions of people enjoy celebrating May Day, spending time unwinding with their friends and family as they are given an extra day off work. But just how did May Day come into being? And how do people choose to celebrate it?
Origins and Interpretations
From exchanging gifts in Italy to singing songs in Spain, it is rare that you will find two countries that celebrate May Day in the same manner – one of the main reasons why May Day is so special. With several nations across the northern ...
Shying away from standardisation and normality, Hamburg is a city with both a unique nature and cosmopolitan outlook, and is well worth exploring. The city, unlike many others throughout Germany, has successfully retained certain elements of its medieval past – even today, self-governance and ancient tradition run rich throughout the place.Historic Hamburg
If there was one word that could be used to define Hamburg's history, it would be 'resilient'. In the last century alone, the municipality has endured terrible floods, hard-hitting reparations and devastating air raids, yet despite all this, contemporary Hamburg it is a thriving city that is alive with culture, commerce and opportunity ...
Some cities are known for their towering, dreamy architectural wonders; some for their historical prominence; while others are of note because of their economic influence. There are some, however, that are known for their inherent artistic merits – home to world-leading artists or the sites where famous artistic movements were started.
For the art lover, these cities are meccas of technical and creative skill – perfect places to explore and admire.
A meeting point between East and West, Istanbul has been a cultural melting point for millennia, recognised not just in Turkey but across the globe, and this wonderful mix of peoples and ideas has allowed Turkey's most populous ...
Man's ability to craft beautiful, iconic structures is truly remarkable. Since the Great Pyramid of Giza first reached up into the sky in 2584 BC, all kinds of wonders have risen and fallen, from the white marbled columns of the Temple of Artemis to the near-100ft-tall bronze Colossus of Rhodes.
As the Great Pyramid is the only ancient wonder still standing, in 2007 over 100 million people voted for the New7Wonders of the World, choosing Chichen Itza, the statue of Christ the Redeemer, the Great Wall of China, Machu Picchu, Petra, the Colosseum and the Taj Mahal as the modern line-up. Nine years later, are there any truly modern structures that could be added to this list?