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New York City
Home to the Empire State Building, Times Square, Statue of Liberty and other iconic sites, New York City is a fast-paced, globally influential center of art, culture, fashion and finance. The city’s 5 boroughs sit where the Hudson River meets the Atlantic Ocean, with the island borough of Manhattan at the “Big Apple's" core.
San Francisco, in northern California, is a city on the tip of a peninsula surrounded by the Pacific Ocean and San Francisco Bay. It's known for its hilly landscape, year-round fog, iconic Golden Gate Bridge, cable cars and colorful Victorian houses. The Financial District's Transamerica Pyramid is its most distinctive skyscraper. In the bay sits Alcatraz Island, site of the notorious former prison.
Los Angeles is a sprawling Southern California city famed as the center of the nation’s film and television industry. Not far from its iconic Hollywood sign, studios such as Paramount Pictures, Universal and Warner Brothers offer behind-the-scenes tours. On Hollywood Boulevard, TCL Chinese Theater displays celebrities’ hand- and footprints, the Walk of Fame honors thousands of luminaries and vendors sell maps to stars’ homes.
Singapore, an island city-state off southern Malaysia, is a global financial centre with a tropical climate and multicultural population. In circa-1820 Chinatown stands the red-and-gold Buddha’s Tooth Relic Temple, Little India offers colorful souvenirs and Arab Street is lined with fabric shops. Singapore is also known for eclectic street fare, served in hawker centres such as Tiong Bahru and Maxwell Road.
Taipei, the capital of Taiwan, is a modern metropolis with Japanese colonial lanes, busy shopping streets and contemporary buildings. The skyline is crowned by the 509m-tall, bamboo-shaped Taipei 101 skyscraper, with upscale shops at the bottom and a rapid elevator to an observatory near the top. Taipei is also known for its lively street-food scene and many night markets, including expansive Shilin market.
Hong Kong is a city, and former British colony, in southeastern China. Vibrant and densely populated, it’s a major port and global financial center famed for its tower-studded skyline. It’s also known for its lively food scene – from Cantonese dim sum to extravagant high tea – and its shopping, with options spanning chaotic Temple Street Night Market to the city’s innumerable bespoke tailors.
London, England’s capital, set on the River Thames, is a 21st-century city with history stretching back to Roman times. At its centre stand the imposing Houses of Parliament, the iconic ‘Big Ben’ clock tower and Westminster Abbey, site of British monarch coronations. Across the Thames, the London Eye observation wheel provides panoramic views of the South Bank cultural complex, and the entire city.
Experience the Venice of the East! The thriving city of Bangkok has a good mix of old and new with an East-meets-West fuse. It is known for its majestic temples or Wats, often considered as the city's heart and soul. There are hundreds of temples around Bangkok with the Wat Pho, Wat Arun and Wat Phra Kaew within the Grand Palace grounds being the most visited. Tracing its roots to a small trading post along the Chao Phraya River, Bangkok is also known for its river markets, as well as the night markets.
Paris, France's capital, is a major European city and a global center for art, fashion, gastronomy and culture. Its picturesque 19th-century cityscape is crisscrossed by wide boulevards and the River Seine. Beyond such landmarks as the Eiffel Tower and the 12th-century, Gothic Notre-Dame cathedral, the city is known for its cafe culture, and designer boutiques along the Rue du Faubourg Saint-Honoré.