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The Five Cheapest European Capitals to Visit 2019

Which European Capital Cities Offer the Best Value for Money?

According to Wanderu’s analysis of the travel experiences of visitors to various European capitals, some of the most expensive you could choose to go to include London, Paris and Dublin. Reykjavik, Amsterdam and Copenhagen are also towards the top of the list. Unsurprisingly, Monaco – with its world-famous casino – is also at the more expensive end of the spectrum. For the more frugal traveler, who might enjoy games at an online casino rather than mixing it with the high rollers at Monaco’s roulette tables, which European capitals offer more bang for your buck? Read on to discover more about five of the best options.


Source: Wikimedia – Vlada Markinovic

The capital of Serbia, Belgrade is widely regarded as an up-and-coming city which offers plenty of new attractions as well as an Old World feel that has remained unchanged for centuries. Visitors often remark how friendly the locals are because, perhaps, they are not used to seeing tourists in large numbers. Belgrade lies on the Sava River and it is a working place where goods are still transported by boat. The lively pedestrianised area of Knez Mihailova is not to be missed if you want to enjoy a little nightlife during your stay.


Source: Wikimedia – WinStonza Talk

Most visitors to Turkey head to Istanbul or the resorts which face the Mediterranean. However, Ankara, the country’s centrally located capital, has so much to offer. Firstly, like Istanbul, there are plenty of antiquities from the Roman period including historic bathhouses and the Column of Julian to explore. Then there are many national museums worthy of a visit to take into consideration, too. If you want a cheap activity, then exploring the Byzantine remains of Ankara’s citadel is well worth it. There are hotels and hostels to suit all budgets in Ankara which has a lively cultural life that attracts many visitors back for more once they have tried it.


Zagreb City Bowl
Source: Wikimedia – Daniel Nikolic

Among the most beautiful capitals in Europe, Zagreb is also one of the cheapest. The city is full of low-cost accommodation and reasonably priced restaurants to try out. It also lies a short distance from the world-famous Plitvice Lakes National Park which makes it the ideal place for a city break where you won’t just be confined to the busy city streets. The Gothic, twin-spired cathedral which dominates the capital’s skyline is also a good place to visit.


Source: Wikimedia – Arild Vågen

Germany’s large capital is surprisingly cheap according to the many visitors who head there. Sure, there are some expensive things you can do in Berlin but eating out and finding a reasonable hotel in the city need not break the bank. You can visit many museums in the city for free. In fact, some people go just to explore the Christmas markets there without spending a euro. Getting around by public transport is also relatively cheap in Berlin compared with other big cities in Europe.

5.San Marino

San Marino Castle
Source: Wikimedia – Max Ryazanov

The medieval town of San Marino is where most visitors flock because it is so beautiful. If you stay just outside this area, then you can find some exceptionally good value accommodation. San Marino may be small but it is perfectly formed. The rugged Mount Titano on which the capital sits is steep, however, so you need to bear this in mind if you are exploring by foot.

How Big Is Africa in Comparison to the Rest of the World?

Massive African plains
Source: Pixabay

When looking at a map of the world, a quick glance will establish what you think you already know about the planet. You have an idea of how the geography of everything fits together, where the United States is, where Europe is, and how everything sits on the globe. The only problem is this; the map you are used to seeing is an enormously inaccurate representation of how big things really are. The world map, most commonly seen, has been designed in order to create something that visually makes sense. The truth is, however, that Africa is depicted at just a fraction of its real size.

Recently, Michael Jordaan, former CEO of First National Bank, published a Tweet in which it was visually demonstrated what the real size of the African continent was, and it caused a massive stir across the Twitter-verse. Many are perhaps aware of the fact that Africa is much bigger than is assumed, but when given a visual representation of this, the effect can be nothing short of jarring.

Africa Is Massive

Being told that the United States barely covers even a fraction of Africa, were it to be placed over it, is one thing, but seeing this is another thing entirely. A world map suggests that the United States is virtually the same size as Africa. This truth is, however, that the United States fits into the African Continent without touching sides.

The effect is even more striking when doing the same exercise with Europe. Europe is positively miniscule when placed inside Africa, to such an extent that it defies belief. China likewise slips into the borders without a problem, with Asian countries like Japan appearing as no more than tiny specks on the enormous face of the continent.

Or to put it another way; the United States, China, India and all of Europe could fit into Africa combined, and would just barely be protruding at the borders. This eye opener was recently visually created by Kai Krause just a few years ago, who intended on demonstrating to the world just how inaccurate the average global map really is.

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But Just How Big Is It?

But, how about a bit of a clearer indication of the situation just to put it all into perspective? South Africa, for example, is only the ninth biggest country in Africa. Algeria is twice the size of South Africa. However, if we’re taking South Africa as a benchmark, the sizes of things begin to make more sense mentally.

Southern Africa is five times the size of the United Kingdom. That’s 1,221,037 km² versus 242,900 km². A size difference that is positively gob smacking, especially when you go back and take another look at the traditional map of the world. It really does seem like whoever was creating this map had a serious issue with size. Though, it should be kept in mind, that this traditional map is referred to as a ‘political map,’ which is used to excuse the massive size discrepancies that are present. If the sizes were accurate, the map would more or less be one giant continent, and a few smaller ones scattered around it.

Once again, comparing the size of Germany to South Africa further makes clear just how big the differences are. Germany will fit three times into the borders, and furthermore, the Netherlands will fit thirty three times into the borders.

On the Other Hand

But let’s not get too carried away. Australia is another part of the world that is grossly misrepresented on the traditional world map. Southern Africa fits into Australia around six times, and into Brazil almost seven times.

Which is to say that the only real conclusion that can be drawn is that the traditional, or political map of the world really is a gigantic confusing mess. If anything, the best approach to understanding the geography of the world is to probably just forget everything you think you know. Which is certainly confusing, but also happens to be the way every school has teaching for a very long time.

The World’s Busiest Air Routes

Popular plane stats and facts
Source: Pixabay

At any given time, thousands of aeroplanes are jetting across the sky, delivering paying passengers to their destinations of choice. Popular routes run throughout the day and night, shepherding passengers from point A to B as the global economy expands.

But have you ever stopped to think about which routes are the most popular?

From an international standpoint, most of us think that flights from London to the US make up the bulk of the air traffic. But, if we look at passenger volume alone, the numbers tell a different story…

Numbers that Fly High

The most popular air route in the world is between the cities of Seoul-Gimpo and Jeju in South Korea. At just over 450km, the route has over 12 million passengers a year, a number so staggeringly high it eclipses second place by a full 3 million passengers per annum. The second busiest air route is between Tokyo and Sapporo in Japan followed by Tokyo to Fukuoka.

Not surprisingly, India has the fourth most popular route with around 8 million passengers flying between Delhi and Mumbai each year. Australia caps off the top 5, with just under 8 million people flying between Sydney and Melbourne. Interestingly enough, the UK, and the US do not even feature in the top 10 with China, South America, Japan and South Africa leading the numbers.

Officially, the most popular international air route is between Hong Kong in China, and Taipei in Taiwan. Second on the international list is the route between Jakarta in Indonesia and Singapore in the Republic of Singapore.

If you have a hankering to try these routes for yourself, or just love flying from country to country, you may need to play at an online casino for a little bit, as the costs of all this flying adds up. Airlines make huge profits, and tickets are not always cheap.

The Most Profitable Routes

If we put aside passenger numbers and we look at revenue, then we have a completely different list on our hands.

According to the Official Airline Guide, British Airways earns around $1.04 billion a year flying passengers from New York JKF to London Heathrow. Qantas is second on the earnings list making a whopping $855 million flying people from Melbourne to Sydney in Australia every year. American Airlines features at number 5 on the list with Los Angeles LAX to New York JFK being the most lucrative U.S air route. Next in line is United Airlines flying from San Francisco to Newark.

Another interesting statistic is the profitability of major airports. We have to discount traffic numbers and go on pure revenue here. In this category, London Heathrow wins out as it features on at least 5 of the most profitable routes even when compared to Dubai or popular destinations like Schiphol in Amsterdam, or Copenhagen in Denmark.

Jetting off across the world
Source: Pixabay

The Longest Flight in the World

For those who have crossed the Atlantic by air, it may seem like you were on the longest flight in the world. These days, it is not uncommon to have flights that exceed 10 hours nonstop between airports. If you really want to feel what it is like to be on the longest flight in the world, make your way from Doha to Auckland. This route flown by Qatar Airways is officially the longest non-stop flight by great circle distance. Climbing aboard the Boeing 777-200, you should be prepared to spend around 18 hours and 20 minutes in the air.

The Most Expensive Flight in the World

What about the most expensive flight?

This is a different category altogether as we have to factor in first class ticket prices. Officially, Etihad Airways has the most expensive flight between Mumbai in India and New York. The cost of a one-way ticket on this luxury trip will set you back around $38,000 and it has a stopover in Abu Dhabi.

What do you get for your money? A private cabin called “The Residence”. This three-room suite comes equipped with a private butler, a double bed with Italian linen, turndown service and a private chef. There is also a living room area with a large flat screen and a separate television in the bedroom. Now that’s what we call flying in style!

Elon Musk To Build Chicago ‘Loop’

Elon Musk’s Hyper-Loop
Source: Quartz

It has been announced that billionaire tech entrepreneur Elon Musk has managed to land a major city contract for his company, Boring Co. This is one of many companies owned by Musk, with this particular branch specialising in tunnel boring. The contract in question is a rapid transport system between downtown Chicago, and the O’Hare International Airport.

With the contract confirmed, you might now recall that plans had been laid down by Musk as early as 2013. His lofty idea at the time was for a system that travelled at a rather outrageous 760 miles per hour, and this was considered a notoriously bold claim. Now that the contract has been secured, it turns out that the speed will be a far more realistic 150 miles per hour, leaving passengers enough time to play at an online casino or read a magazine on the way to their destination.

It seems like with the speed reduction the billionaire has had to have a serious reality check. Or is this just a step in the direction of a 760 mile per hour rapid transit systems, as he is now claiming?

Steps In The Right Direction

As it stands, Chicago residents have had very little options when wanting to get to the O’Hare Airport. Currently a best-case scenario will see a journey from downtown Chicago take about 40 minutes. The Loop, as it is being called by Musk, will reduce that time to about 12 minutes. An enormous improvement to say the least. But, it is still falling a great deal short of the system originally pitched.

However, he isn’t giving up on his 760 miles per hour system. Instead, he is now claiming that the current project is just a step towards his so-called Hyper-Loop. At a news conference, Musk told Mayor Rahm Emanuel that his Hyper-Loop system was better suited for longer distances, specifically mentioning Chicago to New York as an example.

In The Loop

Many are already saying that Musk is a classic case of all bark and no bite, but a look at the proposed Loop between Chicago and O’Hare is an impressive project, none the less. According to the information provided, the Loop will be entirely automated, and be equipped with pods that carry 8 to 12 passengers at a time. The proposed tunnel will be created by Boring Co, and the passenger pods by the infamous Tesla Inc. The tunnel will be completely subterranean, and be imperceptible by anyone on the surface. In other words; silent and creating no surface vibrations or tremors.

Another notable aspect is that there is the possibility that passenger vehicles will also be able to make use of the system. Or at least Musk hinted at the fact, saying that the possibility exists. More interesting is that the project will cost about $1 billion, which may sound like a lot, but is in fact a great deal less than what such a project would normally cost. Plus, riding the system will reportedly be about half the amount paid for a taxi or Uber. So, even if the system is not reaching the lofty heights that Musk originally put down, it is still an impressive endeavour.

Typical Musk Confidence

Musk is once again doing his part in taking the world forward into the future, and evolving technology. Perhaps we will soon live in a world where rapid transport systems really do travel at 760 miles per hour. Assuming that Musk can gather the needed finances. Although that won’t be a problem, especially given his response as to how he would raise the funds for the Loop. He responded simply that he hasn’t had a problem before, and it won’t be a problem now. Short on details it seems, but you have to love the man’s confidence!

Going Solo – The Newest Travel Trend

Solo travel a hit with women
Source: Pixabay

A new trend is rising in the world of the travel industry; solo travel. When thinking about travelling, many imagine doing it with a partner, or with a group of friends. There are, of course, a number of advantages to having others along when exploring the great unknown. Shared costs and good company certainly goes a long way.

So, why is it that solo travel is seeing an enormous increase in 2018? Such an enormous increase that travel agencies around the world are taking notice? It turns out that there are a number of advantages to travelling alone, whether it’s to Vegas to experience the real life thrills that you’ve enjoyed at Spin Place casino online, to Italy to explore the beautiful countryside, or to Asia to soak up the sights and sounds of somewhere like Hong Kong.

Why Travel Alone?

Premier Hotels & Resorts’ founder and managing director, Samuel Nassimov, knows the travel industry better than most. According to him the most common reason for people to travel solo is, very simply, the liberating sense of freedom. In daily life most are bound by rigged schedules, tight deadlines, and cement rules. Taking a holiday alone means making ones own rules, and that speaks for itself.

Travelling alone also means not having to consult with anyone about destinations or travel routes, which means a holiday free from virtually all kinds of stress or conflict. Anything goes when there is no one else to say otherwise.

Sure, there wont be anyone around to hold the camera for a scenic photo. But then that’s what selfies are for!

Women – The Champions Of Solo Travelling

Exploring the world alone
Source: Pixabay

When digging deeper into the nature of this new trend it turns out that women, overwhelmingly, are more likely to travel solo than men. A recent survey conducted by Solitair Holidays found that the percentage of solo travellers stands at 73% female, and only 27% male. A big enough difference to conclude that there is a major trend.

The question as to why this stark contrast exists was posed on Solo Traveller, a social website dedicated to those who travel alone. The responses were varied, but it seems that many simply assume that women are more adventurous, and far more comfortable with being on their own in unfamiliar environment.

Solo Travel Age Groups

It seems that solo travel is also very specific to age groups; Solitair Holidays survey revealed that those willing to travel alone under the age of 30 are just 4%. The vast majority of solo travellers are over the age of 50. In fact, 84% of all solo travellers are between the ages of 51 and 70, which starts to put the whole picture into perspective.

Further analysis finds that the most common destinations are Europe and Mexico, and the most commonly visited attractions are museums. So it seems that solo travellers are most likely to simply take their time, stroll around museums, and not have to worry about others rushing them.

Solo Traveller Fears

The final aspect to take into consideration is what concerns solo travellers the most about their journeys. Some might have assumed it was getting lonely, but it turns out that only 14% of solo travellers are worried about this. The biggest fear is safety, with 60% ranking it as their number one fear.

Samuel Nassimov admitted that safety should be a concern for solo travellers, but concluded that vigilance goes a long way in keeping a person safe, wherever they decide to go exploring.

Ready for a holiday on your own? Now looks like a great time to go travelling on your terms!