My Top Ten….Cities

After last week’s post about my top countries to go to, I thought I would do the same with cities. Interestingly they are in TOTALLY different countries from my top ten, how strange!

1. Vladivostok, Russia – To me that word signifies the ends of the earth, as far as you can go, as it is the furthest the Trans Siberian reaches. It also sounds so damn soviet and cool – I imagine it being very grim and grey, with all the hardened faced people still singing soviet songs as they go about their labours, that sound like Borat’s Kazakh national anthem…

2. Tblisi, Georgia – With a name meaning ‘warm spring’, that only the initiated know how to pronounce, who doesn’t want to go!? It looks like a beautiful Eastern European capital, with a church on a hill overlooking the river.

3. Turkmenbashy, Turkmenistan – The portal to the Caspian Sea and to Baku and as part of the Silk Route, it is a city I am dying to see.

4. Mexico City, Mexico – I went to an exhibit at the British Museum not so long ago about Moctezuma, and it made me realise just how amazing the history of Mesoamerica is and specifically Mexico City, which I had discounted before as being some great big, newly sprung up megalopolis.

5. Timbuktu, Mali – Another place that have always felt signified the ends of the earth to me, a place impossible to go to as it is so totally unreachable, ever since I was a child when my dad used to recite the cassowary poem to me. Nowadays that poem annoys me – it has misled generations of children who have grown into adulthood into believing that cassowaries are from Africa…

6. St Petersburg, Russia – Great grand squares and candy cane patterned buildings.

7. Samarkand, Uzbekistan – Another fabulous Silk Route city.

8. Moscow, Russia – Red Square, The Kremlin, and this place –

It looks like if I climbed up and licked it, it would taste sweet and sticky!!!!

9. Barcelona, Spain – Oddly I have never been here, even though I have been to Spain many times, and have had friends living there in the past. I really want to see all of the Gaudi architecture.

10. Beijing, China – Specifically to see The Forbidden City, but also Tienanmen Sq. and the Temple of Heaven.

Oddly, Russia is not a place I would say I want to go to that badly, yet three of my told ten cities are there!

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4 responses to “My Top Ten….Cities

  1. Barcelona is lovely. Before I was dragged there by an ex-boyfriend, I was always reluctant to visit Spain because I imagined it to be full of British yobs/the stereotypical British tourist, haha. But, I loved Barcelona. Great architecture and food! And I’d love to see as much of Russia as possible! I spent two nights in Moscow six years ago and that was definitely not enough.

  2. Robert Henderson

    Mexico City is amazing, but it can be intimidating at first. It has more history than any other city in the Western Hemisphere, so many different cultures have lived there -the Cuicuilcas, the Teotihuacanos, and of course the Mexicas (a.k.a. Aztecs) who founded Tenochtitlan in 1325. It was a beautiful, perfectly planned city built on islands in a lake. Then the Spaniards came along, they destroyed much of the existing city but built nice things too. And modern day Mexico is a fascinating mix of Spanish and Western elements, and native American ones. The food, the people, the traditions etc. all have traces of both cultures. It’s not as huge as people make it out to be, it’s in fact far smaller in area than greater London, L.A. or New York (let alone Tokyo!). Mexico City proper is “only” 8.7 million people, but most of the interesting bits are clustered in two zones in the central parts of the city. In any case, I agreed with Lonely Planet’s survey results showing Mexico City as the world’s best unloved city -I don’t know why it gets such bad press, it’s not as polluted as people think (air quality has improved a lot since the 80’s) and if you keep your eyes open you will be safe. I’ve been here for 6 years, and my only complaint is that many public buses are too small for a rather tall Westerner like myself!

  3. Vladivostok is not so grimy, especially if you go there in late spring, early summer… It’s actually a beautiful city even if sometimes it still looks a bit “soviet”. Btw, you can have fun, it’s a youg city (meaning, lot of young people), if you like nature, around the city you can find beaitufil places and incredible landscapes. Then it woul dbe worthy doing some diving along the coast, but it’s cold water diving ,eheheh! 🙂

    • tinastravellingtales

      Thank you for your comment Edoardo – I have been neglecting my blog recently but am firing it up again as of today. Thank you for your advice about Vladi – one day I will get there!

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