Grace on Pace

Tag - Myanmar

Our 10 Favorite Historical Places

Our 10 Favorite Historical Places Around the World

Everyone views splendor in different ways. What one person considers beautiful may be completely different to another.  Our favorite historical places are, in their own right, beautiful.  Consisting of everything from individual monuments and temples to entire religious complexes, they are some of the most stunning places on earth.

Favorite Historical Places #10 – Forbidden City – Beijing, China

The Forbidden City is the best-preserved imperial palace in China, the largest ancient palatial structure in the world, and the essence and culmination of traditional Chinese architectural accomplishment.  This might explain the hoards of people itching for a peek.

Forbidden City

Favorite Historical Places #9 – Luang Prabang, Laos

According to legend the Buddha smiled when he rested in Luang Prabang for a day during his travels, prophesying that it would one day be the location of a rich and powerful city.  The spectacle of the ancient temples is apparent at first glance; the unassuming nature of the locals, given the chance, will also leave a lasting impression.

Luang Prabang

Favorite Historical Places #8 – Copán Ruins, Honduras

The Maya site of Copán is one of the most important sites of the Mayan civilization.  The lengthy inscription on the Hieroglyphic Stairway, the longest inscribed text in the Maya region, allowed archeologists to crack the ancient language.  The town of Copán, adjacent to the ruins, is a beautiful place paved with cobblestones and lined with white adobe buildings with red-tiled roofs.  Go for the ruins and stay for the town.

Copan Ruins, Honduras

Favorite Historical Places #7 – Hagia Sophia – Istanbul, Turkey

The Hagia Sophia is an architectural beauty and an important monument for both Byzantine and for Ottoman Empires. Once a church, later a mosque, and now a museum at the Turkish Republic, Hagia Sophia has always been a jewel of its time.

Hagia Sophia - Istanbul, Turkey

Favorite Historical Places #6 – Acropolis – Athens, Greece

The Acropolis of Athens and its monuments are universal symbols that form the greatest architectural and artistic complex bestowed by the ancient Greeks to the world.

Acropolis - Athens, Greece

Favorite Historical Places #5 – Banaue Rice Terraces, Philippines

Carved out of the hillside by Ifugao tribes people 3000 years ago to provide level steps where the natives plant rice, the Banaue Rice Terraces stretch like stepping stones to the sky, with some reaching an altitude of 5000ft).  It is considered one of mankind’s greatest engineering feats.

Banaue Rice Terraces

Favorite Historical Places #4 – Bagan, Myanmar

Tucked away in central Myanmar and home to more than 2,000 temples, Bagan’s beauty and historical significance is unsurpassed.  On the banks of the Ayeyarwady (Irrawaddy) River, the site home to the largest and densest concentration of Buddhist temples, pagodas, stupas and ruins in the world, many dating from the 11th and 12th centuries.

Bagan, Myanmar

Favorite Historical Places #3 – Angkor Wat – Siem Reap, Cambodia

In 1860, missionaries came across the ruins in the Cambodian jungle and discovered a lost city twice as large as Manhattan.  Angkor Wat is actually just one of more than a dozen magnificent temples in the vast metropolis of Angkor, the capital of the Khmer Empire from the 9th to the 15th centuries.  The temple complex is the largest religious monument in the world and absolutely incredible.

Angkor Wat

Favorite Historical Places #2 – Machu Picchu, Peru

An extraordinarily beautiful setting, it’s no wonder Machu Picchu is Peru’s most-visited site.  Dating to the mid-1400s, it’s a marvel of mortar-free limestone architecture perched on a high plateau in the middle of a tropical mountain forest.  Its giant walls, terraces and ramps cut into rock cliffs are the most amazing urban creation of the Inca Empire.

Machu Picchu

Favorite Historical Places #1 – Great Wall, China

To this day, the Great Wall continues to be the world’s largest military structure.  It is also, the greatest tourist attraction in the World and the goal of millions.  It will not disappoint.

The Great Wall of China

Our 10 Favorite Historical Places

Southeast Asia Itinerary “Sampler Plate”

Southeast Asia Itinerary

South East Asia No. 1

Southeast Asia Itinerary – Myanmar, Laos, Thailand, Vietnam, & Cambodia “Sampler Plate”

Temples, Beaches, Great Walls, Monasteries, Tigers, and Elephants

Five Weeks (January 30th – March 3rd, 2014)

Since most international airlines fly to Bangkok, we decided to book a flight with a connection in Beijing and take advantage of the new 3-day visa on arrival. With our 72 hour clock ticking, we spent our time scaling the great wall, wandering the Forbidden City, and getting lost amid the city’s hútòng (narrow alleyways).

After securing our Myanmar visa in Bangkok, we wasted no time and booked a round-trip ticket to the ancient capital of Mandalay. After a 6 day round-trip minibus journey to the ruins of Bagan, Mount Popa, and the island monasteries of Inle Lake, we headed back to Bangkok.

Southeast Asia Itinerary

Southeast Asia Itinerary

We then took the direct bus to Siem Reap to see Angkor’s magnificent temples, before busing to charming Phnom Penh and on to Vietnam’s bustling Ho Chi Minh City.

Southeast Asia Itinerary

Next, we worked our way north with a stop in delightful Hội An, for atmospheric strolls and relaxing on the beach. Stuffed and bronzed, we moved onward to the antique streets of Hanoi and the awe inspiring Halong Bay.

Southeast Asia Itinerary

We then air-lifted out of Vietnam to laid-back Luang Prabang, Laos’ world-heritage city filled with temples, French colonial buildings, elephants and hill-tribe adventures. We then flew to chic Chiang Mai for temple-spotting, thai food, and tiger encounters, before heading back to Bangkok for our journey home.

Southeast Asia Itinerary

Southeast Asia Itinerary


Southeast Asia Itinerary

Budget = $3,700 / Person (Traveling with Eight People)
Flight - New York to Bangkok + 6 Regional Flights$3700
Bus, Tuk Tuk, Taxi, Moto Rental & Boats$3700
Lodging - Hostels & Hotels$3700
Activities - Entrance Fees, Massages, etc.$3700
Southeast Asia Itinerary Packing List

Documents / Essentials

  • Passport (w/copy in Paper) (w/scan saved online)
  • Dollar Cash Money (3-$100, 5-$20, 5-$10, 10-$5, 20-$1)
  • Driver’s License (w/copy in Paper) (w/scan saved online)
  • Credit Card (Visa or Mastercard) Call to Inform Them
  • Debit Card (Visa or Mastercard) Call to Inform Them
  • Myanmar Visa Application (Filled out Two Copies)
  • Flight Itineraries Printed Out (To Obtain Visas)

Liquids / Toiletries (In Plastic Bags)

  • Sun Screen
  • Tooth Paste
  • Bug Repellant
  • Mouth Wash
  • Hand Sanitizer
  • Razor
  • Shaving Cream
  • Q-Tips
  • Nail Clippers
  • Advil
  • Imodium
  • Ciprofloxacin (Need Prescription)
  • Antihistamine Itch Cream
  • Lotion
  • Lip Balm


  • Gummies
  • Pretzels
  • Beef Jerky
  • Granola Bars
  • Chewing Gum


  • 48 Liter Backpack
  • Glasses
  • Sun Glasses
  • Belt
  • Lonely Planet Book
  • Camera w/ Charger
  • Phone w/charger
  • Outlet Converters
  • Head Lamp
  • Hat
  • USB Drives
  • Memory Cards For Camera
  • Day Bag
  • Dry Bag
  • MP3 Player w/ Headphones
  • Ear Plugs
  • Zip Lock Bags
  • Chewing Gum
  • Pen(s)
  • Travel Towel
  • Playing Cards
  • Book to Read


  • (Wear) Sweat Shirt – Give Away on Arrival
  • (Wear) Jeans – Give Away on Arrival
  • Tennis Shoes
  • Sandals
  • Socks (5 Pair)
  • Underwear (12)
  • Khaki Shorts (3)
  • Swim Suit
  • Speedo
  • T-shirts (10)
  • Tank Tops (3)
  • Long-sleeve T (1)
  • Dress Shirts (2)