Countries with the best music festivals


Music festivals are a staple event for any fun-seeker and big-time dancer looking to boogie the night away. Unlike concerts or live gigs at venues, music festivals tend to give a spectacular once in a lifetime experience for those listening and watching to the artist right there and then – with thousands of happy people around you – even if you are in a muddy field.

There are hundreds of exceptional music festivals all around the world – from dance to pop, from rock to hip-hop. There’s plenty out there. We want to give you a guide of some of the countries that are considered to have some of the best. Get your wellies and shades ready!

USA

The Best Festivals: Coachella, Burning Man

Woodstock festival held in the Catskill Mountains in 1969 was highly-regarded as a pivotal moment in the world’s popular music industry. After this, the United States had a lot to live up to. We’ve not been disappointed though. Coachella, CA attracts thousands of festival-goers each year with its glamorous celebrity-spotting vibes and its annual lineup of the world’s best pop, rock, and dance artists. Also Burning Man, NV continues to become more and more popular with mainstream visitors for its unique focus on the arts community, peace & harmony and self-expression.

Burning Man

UK

Best Festivals: Reading & Leeds, Glastonbury

The UK caters to international interests, hosting a wide variety of music festivals. There seems to be an annual event created for nearly every type of musical genre. Some of the best festivals include Reading & Leeds which continue to draw in crowds to its rock and alternative line up, while Glastonbury is often regarded as the best festival in the world, having hosted some of the most prestigious international acts – Dolly Parton, David Bowie, Beyonce, Oasis. Glastonbury is the largest greenfield festival in the world with a capacity exceeding 175’000.

Spain

Best festivals: Primavera Sounds, Benicassim International Festival

Spain is the perfect location for the best summer festival. With its sunny Mediterranean climate, festival-goers are attracted to Spain’s musical festivals for their mix of chilled vacation vibes and their top lineup headliners. Benicassim continues to be one of the best festivals on the International circuit, hosting the best names in pop, rock, and electronica, while Primavera Sounds is also notably popular with festival-goers for its laid-back take on the best urban artists in pop, rock, and underground dance music.

Belgium

Best festivals: Tomorrowland, Pukkelpop

Belgium festivals are the place to be for travelers and those interested in soaking up some European culture. The country attracts festival-goers for its extravagant theming and immersive experiences. Tomorrowland has become one of the largest music festivals in the world, hosting the best international names in electronic dance music. It’s even reached such great popularity that it has other spinoff festivals – TomorrowWorld in the US, Tomorrowland Brasil and Tomorrowland Winter located in the French Alps. Pukkelpop is another award-winning music festival located in Belgium, attracting festival-goers all across the globe for its eclectic host of genres – dance, pop, rock, alternative, hip-hop, heavy metal, and so much more.

Tomorrowland

Music festivals bring their crowds together lovingly as one like no other type of event can. There are truly some remarkable festivals out there with an appeal for everyone. So find the right one for you. You’re certainly invited, come along! Remember to bring your dancing shoes.

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Countries that help working class students get into university have happier citizens

A study has shown that ‘inclusive’ educational policies that help working class students access higher education, such as delaying streaming children according to their ability until they are older, lowering the cost of private education, and increasing the intake of universities so that more students can attend all act to reduce the ‘happiness gap’ between the rich and poor.
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The biggest party countries in the world


Traveling the globe appears to be a common dream shared by people worldwide, although everyone has different preferences when it comes to what you want to experience. Some enjoy letting fate run its course, letting chance dictate what happens next, and others enjoy a perfectly planned, tight-packed experience filled with activities, cuisine, and adventure. Whether you’re chasing pavements in search of yourself, or to expand your cultural knowledge, sometimes you just need to let loose; so, where’s the party at?

The Netherlands, Amsterdam

Popular with both first-time travelers and the experienced wanderers, Amsterdam has it all, and you’ll probably find yourself returning not long after your first venture. While Amsterdam lures the lonely traveler with its charm and tranquility, it has a different side to it which might surprise you; it’s a massive party hotspot. That’s right, if you think you’ll be hanging your backpack up at 8 pm for lack of things to do, then you’re sorely mistaken. Amsterdam is packed with incredible clubs, pubs, and other midnight establishments. If you’re looking for a party then you’ll find it – whether you want highrise or subterranean, chances are it’s just around the corner.

Amsterdam

Ibiza, Spain

Everyone’s heard of Ibiza, and if you love a party, then you need to grab a friend, pack your bag, and book your flight. While the partying experience might be a little pricey, many have said it was worth the dollar. Ibiza isn’t just about strobe light and dance music, there is also the chilled party vibe option where you can enjoy the island without completely overdoing it. If you’re looking for sun, strobe lights, and sensational music, then Ibiza is the place to go.

London, England

Full of life, wonder, and eccentricity; there’s always a party in England’s capital city! All you need to do it prowl the busy streets of Leicester square to be invited to crazy one-off secret party adventures. Of course, keep your wits about you, but London can become the best party you have ever experienced. Whether you’re looking for a wild jaunt in a London pub or a wacky alternative club experience in Camden town – London will have everything you’re looking for.

Absolutely anywhere in Greece

Nightlife is abundant on the exotic Greek islands, and there is no getting away from it. Your choice of destination will be based on just how wild and cultured you want it to be. Kavos, in Corfu, is a famously wild party destination, but sometimes things can get a little too wild. So much that there are TV shows dedicated to showing the horrors that happen. There are plenty of other areas where you can enjoy a fun, but cultured experience, doing it as the locals do. Mykonos has been classified as wild as Ibiza, a reputation worthy of only the most popular party areas! However, if you’re looking for somewhere a little more sophisticated, then Santorini is your place.

Greece

It depends what kind of party you’re looking for, whether you want to go wild on the shores of a warm beach or get crazy surrounded by the city lights. Whatever you’re looking for, there’s always a place to be.

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Countries with the nicest people


If you are a well-traveled person, you may know that some countries are certainly more welcoming than others. When your plane touches down thousands of miles from home, it’s always nice to be greeted with a friendly smile and a warm embrace. On the other hand it’s never comforting for the welcome to feel slightly frosty and unwanted – ignored, stared at, and just overall uninviting.

Every country around the globe has their own little sense of humanity – rules, norms, traditions – and it makes you wonder, which of the world’s countries are said to have the most welcoming and friendliest people? Judging from a survey done by global expat network InterNations, we’ve created a list detailing some of the countries that polled in as having the friendliest attitudes towards ‘out of towners.’ FYI, USA ranked 36th out of 180…

Countries with the nicest people

Spain

“80% say people have a friendly attitude towards out of towners.”
Spain is one of the most popular European tourist destinations, attracting people for its relaxed beach vibes and glorious tapas food. It’s said that the friendly attitude comes from the country’s chilled casual vibes and leisurely lifestyle – siesta anyone?.

Canada

“81% say people have a friendly attitude towards out of towners.”
America’s northern neighbors have ranked highly, attracting visitors with its glorious natural scenery and charming way of life. It’s a common notion that Canadians are reputably open-minded, tolerant, and benevolent. Right, where’s our passports? We’re moving to Canada.

Vietnam

“83% say people have a friendly attitude towards out of towners.”
Having become an increasingly popular tourist destination – especially for backpackers – Vietnam attracts tourists for its one-of-a-kind beaches and endearing culture. Known to be a particularly safe country, Vietnam ranks highly for its friendly vibes and gentle locals.

Countries with the nicest people

Mexico

“87% say people have a friendly attitude towards out of towners.”
America’s southern neighbors attract a host of different visitors – from beach-goers to hikers – all in searching to get a taste of Mexico’s distinctively vibrant culture. It’s said that Mexico is notably welcoming to people with their positivity and easy-to-adapt way of life that naturally embraces everyone.

Taiwan

“86% say people have a friendly attitude towards out of towners.”
Taiwan is an island off the Eastern coast of China and is not a particularly popular tourist destination. However, it does attract people for its fascinating culture of delightful spiritual temples and the lively central capital hub Taipei. It’s said that the Taiwanese are particularly friendly to visitors as they are proud of their independence from China. They offer an open and warm welcome to foreigners.

Portugal

“94% say people have a friendly attitude towards out of towners.”
Portugal appeals to tourists for its thriving cities and coastal resorts, beautiful island scenery, and intriguingly lovely food and culture. The country is said to have a great sense of neighborliness, with an attitude of looking out for each other, valuing comradery and geniality.

Well there you have it, folks, if you’re looking to venture off traveling and want to ensure you are greeted with a smile and a perhaps a nice warming hug…You know where to go!

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The best coffee comes from these countries

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Ask any coffee drinker, and they’ll tell you there is absolutely nothing like the taste of a freshly poured coffee in the morning. It’s an instant taste of optimism. The day starts as soon as that hot steaming mug of bitter-sweet goodness reaches your lip, and with a good-quality coffee, it usually starts pretty darn well.

There’s a lot to know about coffee – it’s not just about the average cup of instant granules you can pick up at the local supermarket, there’s a whole world of different smells and tastes that the little coffee bean can show you that you’re probably yet to discover. Every country has a different way of making coffee, and every little bean of coffee has a different story to tell. Can you tell that we love coffee yet? Here’s a look at the countries who supposedly make the best-tasting coffee and their best-loved strand. Get the flights booked.

Colombia – ‘Supremo Coffee’

Colombia is the world’s biggest supplier of coffee – providing it with 15% of its beans. One particular strand of coffee that is distinctively delightful to the tastebuds is the ‘Columbian Supremo’. It’s often described as the best type of coffee as it uses the latest technology to grow. However, because of this, a genuine 100% Supremo grade coffee is quite hard to come by.

What does ‘Colombian Supremo’ coffee taste like?
A rich, bold and velvety flavor.

Guatemala – ‘Antigua Volcanic’

Guatemala is a country known for its high-quality tasting coffee because the beans grow on the richly mineralized mountainous areas where flavor is intensified. The country’s favorite coffee strand is ‘Antigua Volcanic’ coffee, named appropriately so after it’s grown from the volcanically rich soils of Antigua Volcano.

What does Guatemalan ‘Antigua Volcanic’ coffee taste like?
A sophisticated and heavy taste, enriched with aromas of smoke.

The Arabian Peninsula – The ‘Arabian Mocha’

Arabian coffee is generally thought of to have a sweeter and more delicate flavor – softer tones of sugar, sweet and berries. So if you have a sweet tooth, this may be the one for you! The ‘Arabian Mocha,’ grown on the hills of the Arabian Peninsula, is one of the world’s most famous coffee strands, but due to its small production volumes, it is rare to come by, only usually exported to neighboring countries.

What does ‘Arabian Mocha’ taste?
A sweet and fruity chocolatey flavor.

Ethiopia – ‘Harrar Variety’

Some of the world’s best-known brands and strands of coffee are grown in Ethiopia. The beans are usually grown on the high-altitude Eastern highlands of the country, with each strand tasting notably different. Perhaps the most loved Ethiopian coffee is the ‘Harrar variety’ with an exotic zing perfect for anyone wanting their coffee full of bold flavor.

What does Ethiopian Harrar coffee taste like?
A wine-like aroma, mostly spicy or fruity.

Coffee is one of the most valued exports, and its world-wide produce is a huge business around the globe, powered by our universal love for the gorgeously tasting innocent little bean. When you next take your next first delicious morning sip, have a real think of where it has been grown, and ponder on where it may have all started.

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Trump cuts aid to Central American countries as migrant crisis deepens

The U.S. government cut aid to El Salvador, Guatemala and Honduras on Saturday after President Donald Trump blasted the Central American countries for sending migrants to the United States and threatened to shutter the U.S.-Mexico border.


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Trump plans U.S. aid cut to 3 Central American countries as fight widens over U.S.-bound migrants

Critics say move is counterproductive and might increase migration.
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Countries with the funniest people

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Some people are just funnier than others, there’s no denying it, but are people from certain countries typically funnier than others? We’re looking at hilarious people all over the world and deciding once and for all which countries have the funniest people.

UK

Have you ever heard of dry British humor? You’ll never guess where it comes from! Whenever the world gets British people down instead of crying about it, they find humor in the darkest of situations. It’s what makes the country keep going and there isn’t a single thing that British people won’t turn into a joke. Sure the subject matter might be terrible, but the British mentality is essentially; “If we can’t laugh we’ll cry,” and they choose laughter every time.

USA

The US has its own brand of humor that has become popular all over the world. The sitcom has become a staple of American entertainment, and there are a lot of them. That means there are tons of funny people out there coming up with these great ideas for hit shows. Add to that the amount of stand up comedians on tour each night in America, and you know you’re going to be laughing before you go to sleep. While sometimes American humor might lack subtlety, it isn’t afraid to make a joke that needs to be said.

Australia

Australians are hilarious. We could just leave it there, but we thought we’d explain why they are so funny. Australia is a country where literally everything is capable of giving you a fatal bite, sting, or wallop. The environment is so dangerous in Australia, but they are the most laid back people in the world, and that brings great humor.

Australians aren’t afraid to make a joke in bleak times like the British, but will happily hit you with an American style prank to get you laughing too. It’s this combination of English and American humor that make Australians some of the funniest people in the world.

Canada

Some of the funniest actors in the world come from Canada. Comedians such as Jim Carrey, Mike Myers, and John Candy all hail from Canada and they are definitely some of the funniest people to have ever lived. Throw in a healthy dose of sarcasm on top of those great actors and try to convince us Canadians aren’t hilarious.

Ireland

If you want a good laugh, then make sure you get yourself to Ireland. While most countries have comedians to make them laugh, Ireland doesn’t need them as everyone is hilarious. Sure there have been some funny comedians, writers, actors, and entertainers from the Emerald Isle, but trust us, there are a million others just like them. Ireland is where you go if you want a good time and you can’t leave this country without cracking a smile at least once.

People all over the world are funny, but we think these countries have the funniest people. The most hilarious humor around the world is born from these nations, and while other countries deserve mention, these are the greatest.

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In a letter, the US threatens to limit intelligence sharing with countries that use the Chinese tech giant to build 5G networks

The US has underscored to Germany its threat to limit intelligence sharing with countries that use Chinese tech giant Huawei to build their 5G communications networks.


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These European countries offer the best vacation homes

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If you’re the kind of person that loves to travel and explore the world but aren’t too fond of staying in a hotel, vacations homes could be right up your street. These are houses that are rented out by their owners for tourists and explorers alike to enjoy during their vacation. So, you get all of the home comforts you could possibly want, while also being away from your own house and the same ol’ views of your town. Europe is home to some of the most beautiful vacation homes, but have you ever wondered which one is the best?

United Kingdom

The United Kingdom may be small, but it’s one of the most varied destinations in Europe. Within just a short drive of each other, you can make your way to the beach, the countryside, the valleys, and the cities. This means that you can push the boundaries of your vacation home. You can opt for a quaint apartment in the city, or a humongous converted barn surrounded by fields and hills.

Portugal

Because so many people make their way to mainland Spain for their vacations, Portugal often gets overlooked. This means that there are beautiful and empty vacation homes that are just waiting for you to settle down in. Many of these homes offer endless views over the mountains and the ocean, and Portuguese houses are also praised for their architecture so you can get an art lesson at the same time!

France

With endless sunshine and some of the best food in the world, why wouldn’t you want to see what France has to offer in terms of vacation homes? Many of the best vacation rentals in this country are located outside of the city and in rural towns and villages. This way, you get to check out the medieval buildings, sip on a glass of wine or two, and have a dip in your own private pool.

Croatia

Croatia is one of the most beautiful countries in the world and offers visitors the chance to see this beauty in all of its glory. The coastline and the beaches are scattered around the whole country, which means you can often stumble upon something magical when you least expect it. The best part? The vacation homes in Croatia are normally traditional, quaint, and absolutely stunning.

Switzerland

If you’re a fan of skiing or just frolicking around in the white stuff, you definitely have to make your way into the mountains of Switzerland. While you can explore the gorgeous towns, cities, and villages, the best vacation homes in Switzerland can be found at high altitude. Yes, we’re talking incredible ski chalets and log cabins that are perfect for a winter away. Make sure you take a blanket and some firewood though because you’ll need it.

If you’re looking to venture across the world and see what Europe has to offer, there’s no need to worry about booking a hotel. After all, these countries all have incredible vacation homes for you to enjoy!

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Best vegan-friendly countries in the world

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Traveling is the perfect way for us to see everything on offer out there in the world. However, it might seem as though you have to plan even more if you live a vegan lifestyle. That is until learning the variety of the best vegan-friendly countries in the world.

The U.S.

America has been leading the way for many things over the years, and now it seems as though it’s one of the best vegan-friendly countries in the world, too. The west coast is filled with all kinds of vegan restaurants meaning you can eat out without worry, as well as having dedicated stores, clear packaging, and a huge community all willing to help you find the perfect vegan meals on your travels!

The U.K.

One of the best things about eating in the U.K. is the fact the country has adopted many different cooking styles over the years. The farmer’s markets offer up the perfect place to search for fresh produce if you want to cook up your own meals, while the cities, such as the capital London, have plenty of vegan-friendly restaurants. As if that wasn’t enough, many fast food chains now offer up vegan options meaning you can still enjoy all your favorites.

Germany

If you’re traveling through Europe, then you might want to stop off in Germany’s capital, Berlin. This city has been named as the vegan capital of Europe thanks to the huge number of people living in the area who all live by the lifestyle, but that’s not all. Small towns dotted all across the country have all started to embrace the change with several vegan-friendly stores and restaurants providing almost everything you could need.

Taiwan

Believe it or not, but most of the vegetarian dishes in Taiwan are already vegan. The country tends to steer clear of using eggs and dairy in their meals unless you pay extra meaning you should be safe to eat meals from most places without any worry. The government also has some pretty strict rules about the labeling of their food meaning that everything is clearly laid out for us to see – no hidden ingredients in sight.

Israel

Israel is often considered to be one of the top-rated vegan countries in the world thanks to the incredible variety of meal options on the menu. The local dishes of falafels and hummus are perfect for anyone wanting to try some local cuisine, while companies such as Ben and Jerry’s and Dominos both offering vegan versions of their world-known favorite options.

It once seemed as though we had to accept the fact we would be dining in or cooking for ourselves if we wanted to follow our vegan lifestyle while traveling, but that no longer has to be the case. With so many countries learning how to embrace the change, it looks as though the world could soon all be at our fingertips! Now, all we need to do is book some plane tickets and pack our knife and fork.

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Countries with the worst traffic in the world

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If there’s one thing that many of us can’t stand it’s sitting in traffic. Sure, it starts out as a time to people watch or sing along to the radio, but it can soon see even the best of us lose our cool. We just want to get home! If you’re sick of looking at tail lights, then you might want to avoid the countries with the worst traffic in the world.

The U.S.

It might be no surprise to hear that the U.S. has some of the worst traffic in the world after learning that Los Angeles, New York City, San Francisco, and Miami are all listed in the top 10 most congested cities. In fact, LA takes the top spot on the planet. It’s thought the small streets teamed with the number of people – in between the many tourists that visit the country every year – are all contributing factors to the traffic issue.

Thailand

While Thailand might be on many people’s bucket lists of places to visit, it seems as though you might spend the majority of the time sat in the car judging by their traffic issues. Although there is a driving test, which is prepared for through lessons around a driving obstacle course, most of the problems on the roads appear to be caused by people driving just about however they like – including blocking intersections for hours.

China

Although China has become famous for their incredible public transport system, it seems as though many residents still prefer to hit the open road – or enjoy sitting in traffic on it at least. Many reports state how car ownership is rapidly increasing across the country, while many of the cities are filled with complex road systems and a network of underground tunnels that appear to try and make things as confusing for drivers as possible.

Mexico

Mexico City has the highest population in North America, and it’s thought that people could spend hours on their daily commute. In fact, studies have shown how most drivers in the city will spend a whopping 219 hours stuck in traffic each and every year. As well as losing days of their lives to the heavy traffic throughout the country, all that extra time on the road is said to be one of the major factors of the country’s rising pollution issues.

Romania

Romania is a beautiful country, and you’ll get plenty of time to enjoy it from behind the wheel of your car as you sit in hours of traffic. The capital, Bucharest, is thought to be the worst affected area, especially at rush hour. Parking is free throughout the city while the public transport system leaves plenty to the imagination, both of which have become a recipe for plenty of backlogs throughout the twisting streets of the city.

While many of us love the idea of hitting the open road, it seems as though we might want to avoid the countries with the worst traffic in the world if we’re going to put our pedal to the metal.

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Why are some countries making a vaccine U-turn?

More than a century before Facebook, anti-vaccination campaigners had another method for spreading their message — an eye-catching march through town with tiny children’s coffins emblazoned with the words: “Another victim of vaccination.”


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Greta Thunberg, a 15-year-old Swedish environmental activist, all but shamed the 190 countries represented at the UN’s COP24 conference

Greta Thunberg, a 15-year-old Swedish environmental activist, all but shamed the 190 countries represented at the United Nations COP24 conference in Poland last week.


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5 Fictional Anime Countries We’d Love to Visit

Anime makes it possible for us to travel to incredible destinations that differ much from our world. Animators go to great lengths to create these places, seemingly pulling incredible worlds out of thin air. Unfortunately, it isn’t possible to actually go to these places, but it doesn’t hurt to dream.  Here are five fictional anime countries we’d like to visit.

The Kingdom of Dowa (ACCA: 13-Territory Inspection Dept.)


Fictional anime countries we'd love to visit The kingdom of Dowa from ACCA

Our world’s divided into different regions and countries, each with their own history and culture. But we don’t always get the opportunity to explore these beautiful locations. Luckily, ACCA: 13-Territory Inspection Dept gives us a front row seat to such a place — the Kingdom of Dowa, a country comprised of 13 districts.

For centuries, the nation has experienced the chaos and destruction of war. But thanks in part to the public service organization ACCA, Dowa has been peaceful for the last one hundred years. However, when rumors of a revolt start to surface, it’s up to ACCA to stop it. Tasked with the case is ACCA agent Jean Otus, who must investigate all 13 states to get to the bottom of the rumors.

Not only is ACCA: 13-Territory Inspection Dept intriguing but also rich with culture. Through Jean, we get to see all the different regions of Dowa. Pranetta, in particular, stands out with its desert terrain that’s perfect for a dune buggy ride. There’s also Hare, which boasts beautiful tropical beaches and whose citizens have the longest lifespan in the country.

Alfheim (Sword Art Online)


Fictional anime countries we'd love to visit Alfheim from Sword Art Online

When playing a game, you really don’t want to die in real life. That’s why we’ve skipped Aincard — even though it’s beautiful — and decided on Alfheim, the realm of fairies in ALfheim Online where dying isn’t permanent. Taking place a year after the Sword Art Online incident, the VRMMORPG features nine fairy races competing against each other to reach the top of the giant World Tree. The first to reach the top will turn into the legendary race of Alfheim.

After escaping SAO, Kirito discovers that Asuna is being held captive in ALfheim Online — where the players assume the roles of fairies. Without hesitation, Kirito dives once again into a virtual world and reconnects with old friends to rescue Asuna.

Throughout their journey, we get to explore the beauty of Alfheim — which, like all great vacation destinations, is completely surrounded by water. At the center of this single continent lies the Alne plateau, an area separated from the fairy realms by a mountain range that stretches up into the clouds. It’s essentially the anime version of the Alps, and you don’t need a passport to get there.

Japan (My Hero Academia)


Fictional anime countries we'd love to visit Japan from My Hero Academia

With so many superhero shows and movies coming out, it’s not difficult to imagine ourselves in a world where people have extraordinary abilities. This happens to be the case with My Hero Academia, where 80% of the population has a superpower, aka a Quirk. The anime movie centers around Izuku Midoriya, a Quirkless teenage boy who receives the power of his idol and #1 hero, All Might. To become a certified hero, however, Midoriya must first go through training at the prestigious U.A. High School. And so the story of the world’s greatest hero begins.

We’d love to visit this fictional version of Japan if it meant we could see U.A. High School. The academy is home to the strongest young heroes in the nation — it also doesn’t hurt that All Might is one of the school’s alumni. With the chance to be surrounded by exceptional people, have a Quirk, and study as a hero-in-training, who wouldn’t want to visit (or live in) My Hero Academia‘s Japan?

Amestris (Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood)


Fictional anime countries we'd love to visit Amestris from Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood

Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood is the second anime adaptation based on the manga of the same name. In this fantasy, alchemy — a scientific/mystical process to transform, create, or combine objects — reigns supreme. The series follows brothers Edward and Alphonse Elric who, after a failed attempt to resurrect their mother, go searching for the Philosopher’s Stone to restore their lost bodies. Their journey takes them all over Amesteris, leading them to discover the dark-rooted evil hidden in the country’s past.

Putting Amestris’ history of mass murdering people to produce Philosopher’s Stones aside, it’s a country any anime fan would like to visit. In this fictional world, people can transmute objects into other things without much effort. This makes repairing worn buildings a breeze, and even outlandish feats like building giant walls of ice during a battle are within reach. Despite its 20th-century vibe, Amestris is quite advanced when it comes to automotive armored prostheses, also called automail. These parts not only work in battle, but they also double as prosthetic body parts for amputees. Amestris, with its steampunk, metaphysical feel, serves as the perfect playground for those of us interested in elemental battles.

Land of Fire (Naruto)


Fictional anime countries we'd love to visit Land of Fire from Naruto

Everyone’s dreamed of being a ninja at least once in their lives — especially once Naruto, the inspirational series about Naruto Uzamaki’s quest to become the Hokage, hit the scene in the early 2000s. It was impossible to escape the popular shōnen anime, which has inspired countless playground battles, video games, and of course, a fandom of loyal fans. Naruto takes place on a fictional version of Earth, with a single continent that’s divided into several countries. The majority of the series takes place in the Land of Fire, and more specifically in the hidden village of Konohagakure.

Naruto‘s world resembles feudal Japan in many aspects, with its countries maintaining the balance between themselves through the use of the mystical arts of jutsu. To keep the order and peace, and to protect themselves from attacks, the citizens of these countries go through intense training to control their powers — which includes commanding the elements. When you have the opportunity to live in a world where you can defeat baddies with the power of jutsu — and breath fire from your mouth like a freaking dragon — it becomes impossible to say no.

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35 Places in America That Look Like Foreign Countries

If you yearn to travel the world but are held back by lack of time or money, or impatience for the inconveniences of trans-Atlantic air travel, don’t pack away that suitcase just yet. There are many spots right here in the United States that boast the look and feel of far-flung destinations. When wanderlust hits, start with these 35 places with foreign flair aplenty, no passport required!
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European countries to visit in the fall

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People always like to talk about the best places to go on vacation in the summer and winter, but what about the rest of the year. Fall might be that awkward time between sunning yourself on the beach and getting cozy by the fire, but it’s still a great time to take a break from work. Europe, in particular, has some incredible locations for this time of the year, and they’re ones you won’t want to miss out on.

Germany

This one should be pretty obvious. One of the biggest events to happen in the fall is Oktoberfest, a celebration that has its origins in Munich, Germany. Although many other countries like to celebrate the occasion with their own festivals, nowhere does it better than the home of Oktoberfest. Feel free to let go of your inhibitions as you drink as much as your body can handle, and then some. You might return home feeling worse for wear, but it’ll be a vacation you remember forever… maybe.

Italy

We’re not trying to say that a European vacation should be all about drinking. However, Italy is one of the best countries to visit in the fall, and the drinking opportunities are part of the reason why. The vineyards are thriving, and nothing says a relaxing vacation like watching the sun go down with a bottle of red or white. With temperatures beginning to drop by this time of the year, too, you won’t be stifling in the Italian heat as you enjoy your break. That makes it a great time to check out some of the country’s incredible landmarks. Pompeii, here we come.

Croatia

Croatia has become something of a popular choice for people ever since “Game of Thrones” started filming there. While millions might be rushing there in the summer to make the most of the weather, though, they’re missing out on the great opportunities the fall provides. Although temperatures are lower, they’re still pretty warm for this time of the year. Plus, prices aren’t as high because less people are visiting the country. So, if you’ve always wanted to see Croatia’s incredible views, the fall is the best time to go.

Switzerland

If you’re a hiker, there’s nowhere we’d recommend more than Switzerland. Although the country might be famed for its winter skiing opportunities, the mountains are just as enjoyable in the fall. You’ll be glad you made the effort to trudge all the way to the top once you see the views available. There’s nothing quite like looking down from a mountain peak and realizing how small everything around you is.

What’s more, Switzerland has plenty to offer tourists outside of just somewhere to walk. Fans of rail travel will have a blast seeing the Swiss scenery from the comfort of the trains. Few countries have a rail network that runs quite as efficiently as Switzerland.

Seen somewhere you fancy checking out? Fall might seem like a dreary time of the year, what with the temperature dropping and the trees losing their leaves. However, as these countries prove, it’s just as wonderful a season as all the others.

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As Pence kicks off his Asia tour, other countries have their own ideas for the ‘Indo-Pacific’

Before the Trump administration began calling for unimpeded commerce and an end to authoritarianism in the Indo-Pacific, both Japan and Indonesia already had their own policy ideas for the critically important region.
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European Commissioner: Trade war is ‘unacceptable,’ it’s time for countries to work together

European Commissioner for Health and Food Safety Vytenis Andriukaitis on Tuesday denounced the protectionism he said is keeping countries and their people from seeing as much success as they otherwise would.
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Youth violence lower in countries with complete ban on corporal punishment

A study shows that in countries where there is a complete ban on all corporal punishment of children there is less fighting among young people. There was 31 percent less physical fighting in young men and 42 percent less physical fighting in young women in countries where corporal punishment was banned in all settings, compared with those where corporal punishment was permitted both at school and at home. In countries where there was a partial ban on corporal punishment (such as in Canada, the US and the UK where corporal punishment not banned at home), the level of violence in young men was similar to that in countries with no bans, though the level of violence in women was lower (at 56 percent).
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These Countries Pose the Biggest Threat to U.S. National Security, Says Kissinger Associates CEO

Since the Cold War ended, U.S. national security has focused on issues like terrorism and climate change rather than conflict with other countries, says Jami Miscik, CEO of geopolitical consulting firm Kissinger Associates.

But she said that trend is now reversing, with Russia and China returning to the lead the list of national security risks. Of course, Russia is alleged to have interfered in the 2016 U.S. presidential campaign while China and the U.S. are engaged in a trade war that is expected to intensify.

Miscik, speaking at Fortune’s Most Powerful Women Summit on Wednesday in Laguna Niguel, Calif., also named Brazil as a potential hot spot because of its upcoming elections that could put a more extreme far-right government in power. Meanwhile, in Iran, more extreme leaders may be coming into power because the economic prosperity promised by moderate politicians after the U.S.-Iran Nuclear Deal failed to materialize.

“I don’t think [Western] companies ran in there the way moderates in Iran hoped they would,” Miscik said. “Domestically, the moderates have declined in popularity.”

When it comes to China, she expects that President Donald Trump’s trade war will worsen relations. The longtime safeguard against conflict between the U.S. and China–their financial interdependence–is no longer enough.

“I think the tensions are here. I think they’re likely to grow,” she said before adding: “What we really are interdependent on is trade. If we take that off the table, with sanctions or tariffs, we start to remove the one thing that links us together.”

When asked to assess President Trump on foreign relations, Miscik praised his decision to pull the U.S. out of the Trans-Pacific Partnership and his renegotiation of NAFTA. But in general, she criticized his approach toward America’s allies.

“I do not give him a high grade on making our allies feel comfortable that we will be there for them,” Miscik said.

Miscik said that financial prowess is what allows the U.S. to wield global power. Most transactions come through the American economy at some point, which gives the U.S. government jurisdiction to enforce measures like sanctions on other countries.

“We have economic exceptionalism in our control of the national financial system,” she said, but countries are beginning to explore alternative payment methods in order to avoid the U.S. entirely, which could dilute America’s international influence.

Despite the increased risks from individual nations, functional issues remain a significant threat, from terrorism and rising nationalism to nuclear proliferation, populism, and authoritarianism.

“Climate change has officially become a national security issue,” Miscik said, based on the huge number of Americans living in coastal areas that are in danger of flooding if water levels rise.

She also warned about cybersecurity threats and the new types of attacks that U.S. organizations may need to be prepared to face.

“The one I’m worried about now, especially for businesses, is an attack that manipulates the data,” she said–a tactic that could be used to undermine confidence in American institutions and financial systems.

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