February 2011

Issue number: 117

In this issue

Adventure / Wildlife / Never stop travelling

Cheer up and discover the world’s happiest places! Uplifting adventures in Bhutan, Denmark and India. Inspiring ideas for volunteering abroad – from a week to two years. Plus, Rio de Janeiro, Brecon Beacons, Panama and an Arctic Bruce Parry. See what's inside the latest issue... More

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Additional content

Contents February 2011 | Issue 117

Win! Amazing trips to the Arctic, South Africa, the Silk Road and Malawi.


World in pictures | Dancing devils in Barcelona, extreme sports in Vanuatu, China’s Tea Horse Road and Lake Wanaka in New Zealand

Shortcuts | A swift roundup of the world’s travel news:  Antarctica made easy (ish) and why tortillas deserve recognition...

Go Now! | Arctic Tromsø: the coolest Feb break

10 things to do for free in | The skinflint’s guide to having free fun in New Zealand’s capital, Wellington



Skills | How to be a good guest, hang a mossie net and plan for the Trans-Sib

Gear | All you need for a desert adventure

Photo tips | Take better people pictures

Health | How to travel healthy and happy

Q&A | Your questions answered, including where to go for a UK walking break

From the road

Ripping yarn | West Papua ancient trading route

Letters etc

The world according to | World music maverick DJ Andy Kershaw


Panama | The Kuna Indians of the San Blas Islands have the right idea – perfect beaches, family living, simple values. We follow their lead in the untouched Caribbean

Top 5: Varanasi, India | Find spiritual fulfilment in India’s most sacred – not to mention most fascinating – city, with our guide: includes photo tips and sitar lessons

Bhutan | Be a pioneer in the happiest Himalayan Kingdom – we explore Bhutan’s unique east, which hadn’t seen a tourist for a very long time...

Guantanamo, Cuba | Life beyond the notorious US base

Kilimanjaro, Tanzania | Kili expert Henry Stedman helps you rise to the challenge of climbing Africa’s highest peak

Denmark | TV presenter Simon Reeve, fresh from exploring war zones, explains why Denmark is the world’s happiest nation

Volunteering | From a week to two years, from helping streetkids read to monitoring vultures in the Gobi deset, we look at a world of volunteering options

Plus | Books, Guides & apps, Music, World diary and What’s On: UK

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Articles from this issue

Travel photography: taking portraits

How do the professionals manage to get such evocative and engaging portraits? Steve Davey says it’s all about getting up close and personal

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My secret happy place: Denmark

Denmark is forever top of ‘happiest country’ surveys. But why? TV presenter Simon Reeve, usually found in the world’s danger zones, explains what lures him back

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The other Guantánamo Bay

Guantánamo Bay may be notorious for its US base, but it’s also a Cuban province of cultural diversity and surprising splendour

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Climbing Kilimanjaro

Set yourself a challenge by getting to the top of Africa's highest mountain. Here's a practical guide for making the climb

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Kilimanjaro: a typical climb

What's it like climbing Kili? A day-by-day account of a typical climb up the Machame route

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Kilimanjaro explained

Almost 6,000m of mountain is a lot to get your head around. Jeremy Gane, a 21-times Kili summiteer, helps you find your way

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Volunteering: Help conserve wildlife in Mongolia

"You have conversations and interactions you simply couldn’t have as a traveller". Des Gould, Business Consultant, 55

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Volunteering: Work with 18-24 year olds in Costa Rica

"It doesn't take much effort to get out there and get on with it". Sarah Elliot, Student, 34

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Volunteering: Help a non-profit business in Nigeria

"It was very emotional when I finally had to leave" Cicely Brown, Business Development Director, 44

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Bhutan: Footpaths to enlightenment

In Bhutan, the official pursuit of Gross National Happiness has kept the country’s mystical east closed to visitors for years. Until now…

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Panama: Paradise found on the San Blas Islands

Panama’s Kuna islanders are among the most contented people on Earth. Wanderlust discovers their secret in this award-winning article from Nick Boulos

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Go now! Tromsø, Norway

Legendary polar explorers, Sami culture and perhaps the world’s best place to see the northern lights – north Norway makes for the coolest winter break

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Travel extremes: The ultimate wooden building

Stand face to face with the world's largest wooden structure, home to a 500-tonne Buddha

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Great British Escape: Brecon Beacons, Wales

Powys was recently ranked the happiest place in the UK – with rugged hills, tasty food and bookshops galore – and Brecon Beacons National Park makes it easy to see why

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10 South African adventures – how many would you try?

Croc diving? Dune boarding? Walking with lions? Test your appetite for adventure against South Africa's biggest thrills

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The complete guide to volunteering

Thousands of people volunteer overseas every year. Here we explain why, and how you can make a difference – from a week to a couple of years

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Volunteering: Teaching English on the Book Bus in Ecuador

"For once we English speakers were making a leap of faith". Ed Stocker, Journalist, 29

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6 tips for travel health happiness

It’s certain most of us find happiness when we travel, here we look at how hitting the road can keep you both happy and healthy...

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