Features // Lottie Gross

The best places to travel solo – as voted by you
The best places to travel solo – as voted by you

Solo travel can be one of the most rewarding experiences out there. But where is the best place to travel alone? We put together our own recommendations last year, but this year we thought we’d ask our readers. Here are the best places to travel solo – as voted for by you. 10. Ethiopia Ethiopia might not usually feature…

Photos: China’s record-breaking glass bridge is nearly complete
Photos: China’s record-breaking glass bridge is nearly complete

In another update on China‘s record-breaking bridge over the Zhangjiajie Grand Canyon – which we’re promised is “almost finished” – new photographs have emerged of the near-complete construction. But they don’t exactly inspire confidence in any prospective visitors… This enormous feat in engineering will be the world’s longest glass-bottom bridge at 430m-long, and the highest of its kind, sitting…

Poll: would you use these vibrating shoes to help you navigate a city?
Poll: would you use these vibrating shoes to help you navigate a city?

No, it’s not a click-bait headline – it seems the latest in travel tech is indeed a pair of vibrating shoes. They’re called “Sneakairs“, made by budget airline Easyjet, and are a pair of trainers that are designed to help you navigate your way through a new city using vibrations. Suspend your disbelief for a moment…

An Instagram journey through Albania: 11 beautiful pictures
An Instagram journey through Albania: 11 beautiful pictures

During two weeks researching in Albania for the Rough Guide to Europe on a Budget, Web Editor Lottie Gross took over our Instagram account to document her travels. Here are some of her best photos.  It’s nigh-on impossible to take bad pictures in much of Albania. There’s a wealth of natural beauty and historical charm that just…

Where to go for a serious adventure: 10 of the world’s wildest places
Where to go for a serious adventure: 10 of the world’s wildest places

In last week’s #RGchat, we asked our Twitter followers to tell us what ‘wild’ meant to them. We didn’t expect to get such a beautiful response. After much discussion on Twitter and Facebook, we’ve shortlisted ten destinations that offer a taste of true wilderness or, perhaps, just the chance to go wild yourself. Read on for the…

Poll: would you book your holiday via WhatsApp?
Poll: would you book your holiday via WhatsApp?

Earlier this year, WhatsApp reached an astonishing one billion users – that’s a seventh of the entire population of Earth. Travel companies are now trying to tap into this enormous user base by offering a messaging booking service via the app – but will it take off? Last year Jovago announced they’d be offering a…

The world’s 10 most expensive destinations revealed
The world’s 10 most expensive destinations revealed

Airport transfer booking website Hoppa have released their research on the world’s most expensive cities, and there are a few surprises on their list. Measuring the average cost in each destination for a pint of beer, a cup of coffee, a meal for two, a bottle of wine, a hotel room for one night and taxi fares per three kilometres, Hoppa ranked…

An underwater art exhibition just opened in Florida
An underwater art exhibition just opened in Florida

A brand new art exhibition with a difference has opened in the Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary this month. You can’t exactly buy an entrance ticket and there are no galleries as such. Instead, you’ll need a PADI license and an oxygen tank, because this exhibition sits 27m below the surface of the Atlantic, around…

Quiz: can you say ‘cheers!’ in all these languages?
Quiz: can you say ‘cheers!’ in all these languages?

Love a drink? Then you’ll be an expert on this travel quiz. We’ve travelled around the world and toasted our trips in many a country, but how many of the following languages can you identify? Find out below if you’re a brilliant boozer, or perhaps a little too far gone…

Planes vs cars: the ultimate drag race just took place in Australia
Planes vs cars: the ultimate drag race just took place in Australia

Which goes faster, the plane or the car? Finally, we have an answer to this age-old question… Okay, so it’s not exactly an age-old question. But now we’ve asked it, you want to know the answer don’t you? Well, you’re in luck – kind of. Qantas and Tesla have gone head-to-head to find out once and for…

Quiz: which US national park should you visit this year?
Quiz: which US national park should you visit this year?

This year the US National Park Service celebrates its hundredth year in operation. There are loads of events happening throughout America’s 59 parks this year, so to help you decide where to go, we’ve devised this short test. Find out which US national park you should visit next:  

The 7 most beautiful places in Southeast Asia – chosen by you
The 7 most beautiful places in Southeast Asia – chosen by you

It’s not just appearance that makes up the beauty of a place. Often, travellers will cite the people as the most beautiful thing about a country or culture. In Southeast Asia, there’s no doubt there is beauty in every form – and now our readers have voted to decide which countries are the most beautiful. Here…

Painting the town red, pink, green and yellow: Holi Festival 2016 in pictures
Painting the town red, pink, green and yellow: Holi Festival 2016 in pictures

Every year, Hindus around the world celebrate Holi Festival: the festival of colours. The event attracts many non-Hindus to take part, too, with hundreds of people gathering to throw coloured powder at one another – a tradition supposedly started by Krishna as a young boy when he used to throw paint over the gopis (milkmaids). The result, of…

The world’s happiest countries have been revealed
The world’s happiest countries have been revealed

If you’re a resident of Europe, it’s likely you’re happier than the rest of the world, according to the UN. Yesterday, the World Happiness Report Update 2016 revealed seven European nations in the top ten happiest countries in the world. The report has been released in advance of World Happiness Day (March 20) and ranks 157 countries in order of…

The 10 most beautiful places in Europe – chosen by you
The 10 most beautiful places in Europe – chosen by you

To celebrate publication of the new Rough Guide to First-Time Europe, we took to Facebook and Twitter to ask our followers to vote for the most beautiful places in Europe. After much debate, it was whittled it down to the top ten. These are the most beautiful places in Europe – as chosen by you. 10. Iceland Exploring…

14 gorgeous photos from the Canon photography competition
14 gorgeous photos from the Canon photography competition

Earlier this year Rough Guides were on the judging panel for the ‘Depth of Field’ photography competition run by Canon. Amateur and professional photographers were asked to submit their best shots with interesting use of depth of field. After hundreds of entries came flooding in, we whittled it down to a shortlist and Canon chose the final…

Meet the 80-year-old explorer who just won’t stop exploring
Meet the 80-year-old explorer who just won’t stop exploring

Robin Hanbury-Tenison is an explorer like no other: not only has he been awarded medals for his work with tribes around the world and for his expeditions across various landscapes, but he’s still doing it all at the age of 80 years old. So, you say you’re an explorer: what is a modern day explorer?…

The UNESCO list you’ve never heard of
The UNESCO list you’ve never heard of

We all know about the UNESCO World Heritage List – the comprehensive list made by UN delegates, detailing places around the world that are “considered to be of outstanding value to humanity.” It includes sights like the pyramids in Egypt, England‘s Stonehenge and – most recently – the Forth Rail Bridge in Scotland. But there’s another list that…

Finding love in the UK’s least romantic city: 7 reasons to visit Hull
Finding love in the UK’s least romantic city: 7 reasons to visit Hull

This year we listed Hull as one of the top ten cities to visit in 2016 – an accolade that had many people surprised. Here, Lottie Gross explains why it made the list. It’s safe to say, most people’s preconceptions of Hull aren’t brilliant. In the past it has been named Britain’s worst city and the least…

12 of the best travel apps and websites you should use in 2016 
12 of the best travel apps and websites you should use in 2016 

Unless you’re planning a digital detox, you’re likely going to use the internet, either on a desktop or via a mobile app, to plan part of your next trip. Here are 12 websites and apps you need to check out for your travel plans in 2016. 1. Find somewhere to pitch up with Hipcamp We’re…

Quiz: which country should you visit in 2016?
Quiz: which country should you visit in 2016?

Now the New Year has dawned we’re all thinking about where we should go in the next twelve months. Fortunately, we’ve compiled a definitive guide to the best countries, cities and regions to travel to in 2016 to help you plan your holiday. But if you’re still stuck for ideas, take this quiz to find out…

The best Christmas gifts for travellers
The best Christmas gifts for travellers

Whether you’re looking for a meaningful gift for your travel partner, or you’re stuck with the awkward guy in the office secret Santa draw, there’s something for every kind of traveller here. Get your Christmas lists at the ready: here are the best gifts for travellers this year. For the practical traveller: cafetiere mug This…

19 pictures of Hong Kong that’ll have you reaching for your camera
19 pictures of Hong Kong that’ll have you reaching for your camera

Named one of the most photogenic destinations by Rough Guides photographer Tim Draper, Hong Kong in undeniably striking. Whether it’s the brilliant skyline lit up at night, the colourful street scenes or even the surrounding countryside, there’s a picture to be taken at every turn. Here are 19 gorgeous Hong Kong pictures from Picfair‘s best photographers…

Quiz: Where should you take a digital detox?
Quiz: Where should you take a digital detox?

Do you spend more time tweeting about your travels than experiencing them? Are you fixated on your Facebook feed? It’s time to break the habit. You’ve read the guide on how to give up social media while you’re on holiday, and now it’s time to find the perfect destination for your digital detox. Take the test below…

Creativity & consumerism: how to spend a weekend in Birmingham, England
Creativity & consumerism: how to spend a weekend in Birmingham, England

If we told you that Birmingham, the industrial powerhouse of the UK in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, had more than six million trees, you probably wouldn’t believe us. If we said it had more parks than any other European city, you might question our judgement. But you had better believe Birmingham holds some surprising…

Video: 5 incredible views of London from above
Video: 5 incredible views of London from above

As far as capital cities go, London is big. It’s the largest capital in Europe and has land mass of over 1500 square kilometres. Within that space, over 8.5 million people from all over the world live, work and play, and a further seventeen million people visit the city each year. Those are big numbers…

The man who accidentally picked up a pet penguin in Uruguay
The man who accidentally picked up a pet penguin in Uruguay

Tom Michell, author of The Penguin Lessons, was an intrepid but fairly ordinary 23 year old when he travelled to Argentina in the 1970s to teach English in a boys’ school. But on one school break, in which he travelled through Brazil and Uruguay, he picked up an unusual companion… Here’s the story of how it…

Video: couple captures the romance of Norway’s wild storms
Video: couple captures the romance of Norway’s wild storms

If howling winds and unrelenting rains aren’t your idea of a romantic break, then perhaps this isn’t the trip for you. But watch this video, and it might change your mind… Norway‘s rugged coastline is battered by wild storms every winter, but that doesn’t mean adventure, and even a bit of romance, isn’t possible – as…

The magic of Vietnam in 22 pictures
The magic of Vietnam in 22 pictures

Vietnam: an intoxicating country full of stunning sights, sizzling beaches and sumptuous food. It’s a country bound to make an impact on you, no matter where you go, whether it’s trekking with hill tribes near Sa Pa, or whizzing around Ho Chi Minh City on a motorbike. From our favourite Picfair photographers, here are 22 gorgeous…

21 pictures of Iceland to make you swoon
21 pictures of Iceland to make you swoon

Iceland‘s landscapes look different from every angle and at every time of day. Whether it’s a late-morning sunrise in the middle of winter, or the aurora borealis dancing in the skies above a glassy lake, the country produces vistas that make even the most travel-weary adventurers say “wow”. The climate can be challenging, but the rewards are plenty –…

9 secret cabins that’ll have you pining for your own
9 secret cabins that’ll have you pining for your own

We all want to get away. To find a refuge we can retreat to for peace, quiet and solitude; a place where our mind can breathe. This was the driving force behind Zach Klein and his friends when they started up their Cabin Porn Tumblr blog. “Inside each of us is a home ready to be…

Poll: is travel the best education you can get?
Poll: is travel the best education you can get?

Education; noun; the act or process of acquiring knowledge. Travel may just be the best education you can get. Sitting at a desk studying page after page is only half the story; exploring the world can give you so much more than just knowledge. You can learn about the geology of the Grand Canyon in…

5 TED Talks that will inspire every traveller
5 TED Talks that will inspire every traveller

If you’re in need of inspiration, TED Talks aren’t short of it for most topics – and they certainly aren’t lacking when it comes to travel. You could spend hours watching presentation after presentation, soaking up all the words of influential and interesting people from around the world. But we’ve got a few favourites; here are…

The best of Instagram’s travelling pets
The best of Instagram’s travelling pets

If there was ever a perfect pairing on Instagram, it’s travel and pets. You might look at a landscape and think: yes, that is beautiful. But it’s still missing something. Sometimes it takes a fluffy friend to give an image that real awe (or aww) factor. From climbing cats to daring dogs, Instagram plays the visual home to some…

6 reasons to visit Edinburgh outside of the Fringe
6 reasons to visit Edinburgh outside of the Fringe

It’s that time of year again: Edinburgh has taken off its Festival face and the Fringe has finally petered out of our social media feeds. After a month-long celebration of all things arts, culture and creativity, the city can go back to sleep. Or can it? It’s not all about the Fringe in Scotland’s capital…

Crowdfunding your holiday: the trend that’s gone too far?
Crowdfunding your holiday: the trend that’s gone too far?

Travel is increasingly driven by the sharing economy: we can sleep in strangers’ beds, eat in other peoples’ homes and take tours led by locals. These experiences help us see the world from a new perspective and make new friends at every turn. But has this movement been taken too far? You’ve got your itinerary set, decided which hotels you’ll stay in…

Win a walking holiday for two in Tuscany
Win a walking holiday for two in Tuscany

This competition is now closed. We’re giving away a walking holiday in Tuscany for two in our latest competition with FrancigenaWays.com. If you’re dreaming of olive groves, vineyards and quaint little hill-towns, this is the trip for you. Tuscany is in many ways the essence of Italy – and there are few better ways to explore the…

Quiz: are these really Australian place names?
Quiz: are these really Australian place names?

From Uluru to the Great Barrier Reef, Australia has many wonders. But some of the country’s most unbelievable highlights are its weird and wonderful place names. Doo Town and Tittybong might sound downright ridiculous, but they’re just the tip of the iceberg. Do you think you can tell real place names from ones we’ve made up? Take the quiz to find…

7 things you probably didn’t know about Senegal
7 things you probably didn’t know about Senegal

Say Senegal or mention West Africa and misinformed mutterings of ebola start to spread quicker than the virus itself. Sitting on the western shoulder of Africa, Senegal is frequently overlooked by travellers – but for little good reason. While the excellent birding and beaching in The Gambia – the country that slices Senegal’s coastline in two…

Poll: would you wear this to save suitcase space?
Poll: would you wear this to save suitcase space?

We’ve all done it: put on a few extra layers to save space in our hand luggage or worn hiking boots to the airport so we didn’t have to pack them in our carry-on bags. But how desperate are you to take that extra outfit on your next trip? With tight budget airline hand baggage restrictions,…

Outstanding travel photography: our favourite images from Picfair
Outstanding travel photography: our favourite images from Picfair

We’ve been fans of Picfair from the beginning: a place where amateur and professional photographers alike can sell images at their chosen price, it’s great for snap-happy travellers – whether you’re just lucky behind the lens or an aspiring travel photographer. Reflecting on their last year, founder Benji Lanyado said: “[This year] we passed one…

20 incredible pictures from the Travel Photographer of the Year Awards 2015
20 incredible pictures from the Travel Photographer of the Year Awards 2015

Every year the Travel Photographer of the Year awards get thousands of submissions from around the world, from budding travel photographers to professionals, for the most prestigious accolades in the industry. This year’s best entrants have been selected and the winners chosen, and all are on display at the Royal Geographic Society in London. Here’s our pick of…

Win the ultimate camping accessory kit from Bear & Bear
Win the ultimate camping accessory kit from Bear & Bear

This competition is now closed. We’re giving away an incredible bundle of camping gear from online boutique Bear & Bear. So you’ve got your tent, poles and pegs and you’re ready to set up camp – but that’s just the Bear (& Bear) essentials… Next you need sleeping bags, torches, picnic blankets and more. So this is…

Gorgeous video explores the Philippines from above
Gorgeous video explores the Philippines from above

The Philippines is beautiful from the ground, but from above it’s even better. This video soars hundreds of metres into the air to give you a bird’s-eye view – and it’s awesome. From White Beach on Boracay to the little town of El Nido, Frédéric Bussière’s drone camera captures the stunning scenery of this southeast-Asian archipelago. As…

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