culture & history DESTINATIONS

South Africa, Greece, Morocco, Netherlands

Morocco is the definition of a melting pot with French, Spanish, Arabic, and Berber influence shaping everything from the country’s history and architecture to its culture and cuisine. The collision of cultures means you hear the locals speaking multiple different languages, see a variety of religious structures, and taste a fusion of food that can only be found in Morocco. Take to the desert to learn more about the indigenous Berber population, visit the third largest mosque in the world to understand the important role religion plays in daily life, and eat as often as you can to experience the wide range of Moroccan food. 

Experiencing Greek culture means chatting with the local shop owner, eating al fresco on the water, drinking Ouzo on the beach, and slowing your pace down. Wander around ancient ruins and imagine what it would have been like to live during the Archaic era. Trek to hidden waterfalls on Samos and Crete. Soak up the sun and salt water. People watch from the outdoor patio of a seaside cafe and observe the importance of familial relationships in action. Visit a museum and gaze upon archeological treasures and age-old artifacts from the earliest civilizations on earth. You could spend weeks in Greece and still leave wanting more. 

Culture in the Netherlands revolves around art, food and drink, and cycling. With world-famous Dutch painters like Vincent Van Gogh, Rembrandt, and Johannes Vermeer, the Netherlands’ many marvelous museums are must-sees for any art-lover. With 32,000 kilometers of bike paths throughout the country, cycling is an integrated part of Dutch culture. Do as the Dutch do, pick up a bicycle, and pedal your way around bike-friendly cities like Utrecht and Amsterdam. Visit in spring and see the millions of tulips that bloom at the famous Keukenhof, or anywhere else within the Bollenstreek (Bulb Region). Dutch culture is cheerful, honest, and will embrace you with open arms.

From its pristine nature to its cultural diversity, South Africa is always buzzing. Learn about the country’s most significant history by visiting the Apartheid Museum and the Soweto urban complex in Johannesburg or the Bo-Kaap neighborhood and Robben Island in Cape Town. Take the wine tram through Franschhoek Valley and visit the best vineyards and wineries in the peaceful countryside. Trek up Table Mountain or along the Garden Route to appreciate all of South Africa's rugged beauty. See penguins, seals, whales, and sharks in their natural environments on the Western Cape or head northeast to some of the world’s biggest wildlife preserves to spot lions, hippos, elephants, and other big game animals. 

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