Author: Stephen Lioy

Introducing: Jyrgalan – Boz-Uchuk Lakes Trek in Kyrgyzstan

Introducing: Jyrgalan – Boz-Uchuk Lakes Trek in Kyrgyzstan A growing trekking destination, the Central Asian state of Kyrgyzstan’s rugged mountains and verdant valleys are becoming increasingly popular among independent travelers looking to experience pristine nature and local culture. While traditionally independent international trekkers have stuck to a set few routes around the cities of Bishkek and Karakol, a number of smaller settlements around the South Shore of the country’s Issyk-Kol lake are developing as alternative hubs for trekking on newly-marked routes into the central Tian Shan mountains. One of these, the small village of Jyrgalan around 50 km to the...

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What It’s Like In: Texas’ Rio Grande Valley

What It’s Like In: Texas’ Rio Grande Valley Once renown for horse thieves and Catholic missions, U.S. Army forts and a short-lived independent Republic; now the home of a much-maligned border. Called the Rio Bravo in Spanish, populated by a diverse mix of nationalities and backgrounds. Texas is pretty different from the rest of the US, to be sure, but the Rio Grande Valley is also a far sight removed from the rest of Texas. On The Streets The very streets themselves are often more reminiscent of old-school Spanish colonialism than the modern US. The big-brand box stores creep up...

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Photo of the Week: Keren Camel Market in Eritrea

Photo of the Week: Keren Camel Market in Eritrea   The camel plays an important role in Eritrea’s history and even self-identity, with the long-suffering animals playing a vital role in many of the battles central to the decades of conflict that have waged on and off since the 1960’s. The animal even features prominently on the country’s official emblem, and a shiny embossed metallic camel features prominently on the Eritrea visa alongside the embassy stamps that authenticate it. It should come as no surprise after all that, then, that one of the focal points of weekly schedules and...

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What It’s Like: Winter Travel in Kyrgyzstan

What It’s Like: Winter Travel in Kyrgyzstan For most of the growing number of tourists that are traveling in Kyrgyzstan, the small Central Asian republic is a country of summer mountains and sandy beaches. The majority of visitors come in the warmer months, for the June-September high season when horse riding and mountain climbing and of the many other reasons to visit Kyrgyzstan. For a small subset of the travel scene, though, the country is creeping up the ranks in popularity as a winter tourism destination as well. Snow-capped mountains, accessible front- and back-country skiing and boarding, and super affordable prices that...

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Photo of the Week: Exploring Asmara, Eritrea

Photo of the Week: Streets of Asmara, Eritrea   Researching a trip to Eritrea, the bulk of the (admittedly very limited) information available points to one major draw: the Art Deco Architecture of capital city Asmara. An Italian colony from the 1880’s till 1947, the European influence is notable throughout the country but particularly in Asmara. Italian-era theaters, ornate villas housing consulates and government offices, street-side cafes serving up macchiatos and pasta, and the sound of Italian as a second-language among the older generations. But there are other sides, as well, deeply religious (the population is roughly split between Islam...

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About GoMad NoMad

The GoMad Nomad Travel Mag is an online magazine for independent travelers publishing original travel articles on popular and off-the-beaten-track destinations, volunteering and working opportunities abroad, and practical travel advice on long-term, adventure, alternative, and budget travel.

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