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Around the World in 24 Hours

A photo tour for the adventurous traveller who never stops

5 A.M. in Hawaii
Whether day breaks gently or in fiery glory, dawn—pictured here in Hawai'i Volcanoes National Park—is a time to look at the world anew. ...Dawn is when the world is at its best, a fine and private place. Breakfast, and everything after, can wait.
Written by P.F. Kluge. Photograph by Andrew Richard Hara.
6 A.M. in Paris
The day is fresh in the French capital as the Marché Bastille fills with vendors organising their produce before the official market opening at 7 a.m. ...Twice a week (Thursday and Sunday) food stalls sprawl along Boulevard Richard Lenoir, piled high with crates of seasonal fruits and vegetables, baskets of eggs, stacks of cheese, bowls of olives, jars of yogurt, and armloads of flowers. Soon appetising aromas fill the air, from sweet breakfast crepes to pans of paella to Alsatian choucroute garnie, and you find yourself waiting for vendors to stop their preparations, look up, and ask what you’d like to sample. en.parisinfo.com
Written by Jill K. Robinson. Photograph by David Briard.
7 A.M. in San Francisco
Skip the tiny hotel gym and opt for climbing San Francisco’s more than 670 stairways instead. ...Whether your workout goals include a glute-burning workout or merely spectacular views and fresh air, pick up Adah Bakalinsky’s Stairway Walks in San Francisco to help plan your uphill course. The wide and well-maintained Lyon Street steps lure fitness fanatics; 16th Avenue’s tiled stairs are a work of art; Baker Street claims the longest continuous staircase in the north side neighbourhoods; and extremists seek out the Bernal Heights neighbourhood, with the most stairways in the hilly city (over 50 blocks of stairway streets). 
Written by Jill K. Robinson. Photograph by Jayms Ramirez.
8 A.M. in Abu Dhabi
Before the glitzy skyscrapers and even its oil, Abu Dhabi (and the rest of the United Arab Emirates) was known for natural pearls, something the region hopes to recapture. ...Spend the morning getting a taste of history with the Traditional Pearl Diving Experience with Al Mahara Diving Centre. You’ll voyage to the waters off Sir Bani Yas Island on a pearling dhow to learn how to find your own pearl in the shallow water, armed with a traditional basket, bone noseclips, and a stone weight. Whether or not you hit upon a dana (the most valuable kind), your pearl is a uniquely Emirati keepsake. divemahara.com
Written by Jill K. Robinson. Photograph by Outdoor-Archiv, Alamy Stock Photo.
9 A.M. in Melbourne
Some of the best coffee in the world can be found in Melbourne, Australia's “second city”. ...In fact, there's nothing secondary about the city's radical street art, outdoors activities, and innovative food scene. Cockatoos, grey-headed flying foxes, and the world's only urban penguins also call the place home. natgeoexpeditions.com
Written by Robert Reid. Photograph by Doug Gimesy.
10 A.M. in Tanzania
After exhilarating encounters this morning in the Ngorongoro Crater with some 30,000 creatures (including lions, elephants, and zebras), return to camp and venture to the nearby Maasai village. ...You can participate in daily life there, whether visiting the school, talking with elders about Maasai culture, helping in the fields, cooking lunch, fetching water, or teaching a new game to the children. Or you can keep your walking shoes on and join Maasai guides to discover the Ngorongoro highlands on foot, learning about animal habitats. natgeoexpeditions.com
Written by Jill K. Robinson. Photograph by Michael Nichols, National Geographic Creative.
11 A.M. in Argentina
In the Southern Patagonian Ice Field, the name you need to know is Perito Moreno. This glacier covers more than 96 square miles and is the world’s third largest freshwater reserve. ...With Hielo & Aventura’s Big Ice tour, you can get a close, yet safe view of the glacier’s spectacular ice falls from its front walls, which loom nearly 200 feet above the water’s surface. The highlight of the daylong excursion is hiking atop the frozen plateau to lunch, while viewing crevasses, caves, and moulins streaming with meltwater. hieloyaventura.com
Written by Jill K. Robinson. Photograph by Ed Norton, Lonely Planet Images/Getty Images.
12 P.M. in Namibia
Skeletal camel thorn trees rise from a dry clay pan in Namib-Naukluft National Park, backdropped by a sand dune glowing orange in the midday sun. ...One of 16 official parks and reserves in Namibia, Namib-Naukluft is known for its towering sand dunes, clay pans, rugged mountains, coastal ghost towns, and desert-adapted wildlife. natgeoexpeditions.com
Written by Jayne Wise. Photograph by Frans Lanting, National Geographic Creative.
1 P.M. in Charleston
While Charleston, South Carolina's charms have been luring visitors for centuries, a road trip north on Highway 17 to Pawleys Island reveals a much wilder stretch of coastline—including Waccamaw Neck, or the Neck, for short—that owes its heritage to the Gullah traditions. ...If Charleston is the Low Country’s historic headquarters, the Neck is its spiritual heart, and an unexpected source of culture—from basketmakers and woodcarvers to soul food cooks and fishermen, museum guides, and living heritage experts. And now, thanks to widened bridges, improved roads, and the opening of a second hotel on Pawleys Island, the rice corridor is ripe for a long weekend. 
Written by Jessica Mischner. Photograph by Alex Kotlik.
2 P.M. in Portland
While the odd and unusual walk hand-in-hand in Portland, it turns out that the Oregon city’s eccentricity goes way back—long before the Voodoo Doughnut shop and nude bike festivals. ...The Underground Portland tour, by Portland Walking Tours, leads visitors through Old Town and Chinatown and then underground to the legendary “Portland Shanghai Tunnels” below the historic Merchant Hotel. Guides, in collaboration with the Oregon Historical Society, explore the city’s history of vice and corruption, allowing you to get a far better glimpse of Portland’s quirky spirit than just spending the afternoon walking and gawking along Alberta Street. portlandwalkingtours.com
Written by Jill K. Robinson. Photograph by NashCO.
3 P.M. in New Zealand
On the North Island of New Zealand, a system of caves burrow beneath green, rolling topography. ...The most famous of these—the glimmering Glowworm Grotto—was a legend among the Maori people by the time it was first explored in 1887. By 1889, the limestone caves and their glowworms (which are actually larval fungus gnats found only in New Zealand and Australia) had become a tourist destination. More than 125 years later, they remain a source of wonderment for visitors, thanks to their shimmering fringe of silky threads suspended from the cavern ceiling. —Excerpted from Nat Geo’s new book Wild, Beautiful Places
Photograph by Stoked for Saturday.
4 P.M. in Croatia
On a sea trek in Croatia, afternoons spent snorkeling or hiking along the Adriatic coast flow into evenings sleeping on a beach under the stars. ...Sea trekkers store their gear in an inflatable waterproof backpack that trails behind as they swim to the day’s destination. This new adventure sport combines backpacking, free diving, and fin-swimming and was developed by German freediver Bernhard Wache. He also leads trips to Elba, Cinque Terre, Sardinia, and Corsica. “With sea trekking you leave everything behind. You face life without a lot of possessions,” Wache says. “All you have are the things you really need.” aetem.de/en
Written by Lois Parshley. Photograph by Tim Ertl.
5 P.M. in Tokyo
Exports of Japanese sake to the United States have grown in recent years to nearly £25 million annually, especially of higher-end, higher-priced sake. ...Create your own special sake happy hour in Tokyo to learn about and taste the wealth of options. Start at Nihonshu Stand Moto, a standing bar in Shinjuku well known among sake lovers, where you can choose from among the offerings on the handwritten menu. Next head over to Kuri in Ginza, with more than a hundred types of sake, including weekly seasonal selections. Both spots have sake sommeliers, so you can lean heavily on their expert advice. sake-talk.com
Written by Jill K. Robinson. Photograph by Alexander Spatari, Getty Images.
6 P.M. in Kerala
Sunset in Kerala, India, is greeted by a series of rituals. Here on Kakkathuruthu, a tiny island in Kerala’s tangled backwaters, children leap into shallow pools. ...Women in saris head home in skiffs. Fishermen light lamps and cast nets into the lagoon. Bats swoop across the horizon snapping up moths. Shadows lengthen, the sky shifts from pale blue to sapphire, and the emerald-fringed “island of crows”—the Malayalam name for this sandy spot along the Malabar coast—embraces night. If dawn is awakening and daytime illumination, then twilight is transcendence, a final burst of vitality before darkness falls. natgeoexpeditions.com
Written by George W. Stone. Photograph by M Amirtham, Dinodia Photo/Age Fotostock.
7 P.M. in Cuba
When the sun dips behind Havana’s crumbling facades and the mercury drops to a bearable number, Cubans head outdoors. ...Tourists head for famed spots like the Tropicana, but locals flock to the Malecón. Walk any section of the five-mile esplanade and you’ll feel as if you’ve stumbled upon a world music festival. A man playing a six-stringed tres serenades lovers while others rumba as a classic car rolls by. Grab a sweet treat from the nearby Coppelia ice-cream parlour, or snack on roasted peanuts sold in bouquets of white paper cones as you stroll the thoroughfare. natgeoexpeditions.com
Written by Jeannette Kimmel. Photograph by Tino Soriano, National Geographic Creative.
8 P.M. in New York City
In New York—here, looking north over Battery Park—nothing is ever really closed. Whether uptown, downtown, or in Brooklyn, no other place makes night shine brighter. ...You can draft a wish list of your perfect night here, but it’ll end up being so lengthy that you’ll realise right away that your perfect night is actually several nights. And that the most New York of moments is the one you don’t expect.
Written by Tara Isabella Burton. Photograph by George Steinmetz.
9 P.M. in China
During the Shangyuan festival on the 15th night of the first month of the new Chinese year, towns and villages across China bathe in the glow of lanterns. ...Red-paper globes take their place among illuminated butterflies, dragons, and birds, each posted with a riddle—those who solve them win a prize. 
Photograph by Nicky Loh, REUTERS.
10 P.M. in Budapest
If you are Budapest bound, plan to arrive via the river at night. Danube cruise ship passengers know to be out on deck when the Hungarian capital’s illuminated landmarks start to fill the scene: ...the bristling domes of the Parliament building on the Pest side, the Castle atop its broad hill on the Buda side, and Chain Bridge guarded by stone lions connecting the city. It’s a symphony of architecture, light, and rippling reflection that a history of war and revolution hasn’t silenced. Prefer to stay on land? Stroll the Pest embankment from the elegant Four Seasons Gresham Palace to Liberty Bridge’s green towers.
Written by Amy Alipio. Photograph by Sergii Figurnyi, Alamy Stock Photo.
11 P.M. in Monaco
The line-up of cars outside the legendary Monte Carlo casino includes a mantis-green McLaren and a black Rolls with its top down. ...Next door, the restaurant at the Hôtel de Paris is by Alain Ducasse, of course. Down the hill in the mega-yacht-filled Port Hercule, a luxury cruise ship sails off to its next Mediterranean port of call. Luckily it doesn’t cost a thing to walk the Circuit de Monaco, the twisting route through town that roars with Formula 1 race cars during the annual Grand Prix weekend in May. Ten euros and a passport get you into the Casino de Monte-Carlo, surprisingly low-key despite its James Bond setting.
Written by Amy Alipio. Photograph by Marc de Delley.
12 A.M. in Norway
When it comes to hunting the aurora borealis in the northern lights zone, a key consideration is making sure nothing stands between you and the flickering ribbons lighting up the night sky. ...In extreme northwestern Norway, 250 miles above the Arctic Circle, the Kirkenes Snowhotel offers either rooms constructed of ice or fishing-hut-style cabins with arched, panoramic windows and lounge chairs from which to hunt the aurora borealis in comfort. Go on a midnight snowshoe hike along a marked route to the edge of an Arctic fjord—and bring along a hot beverage from the hotel restaurant for added cosiness. kirkenessnowhotel.com
Written by Jill K. Robinson. Photograph by Cody Duncan.
1 A.M. at 35,000 Feet
“I’m actually a little bit obsessed—OK, totally obsessed—with trying to do everything I can to make my flights more sleep-friendly. ...Because I travel so much, I’ve learned over time that a little preparation goes a long way.” —Arianna Huffington
Written by Hannah Sheinberg. Photograph by Wasim Choudhury.
2 A.M. in Atacama Desert
Sandwiched between the Pacific Ocean and the Andes mountains, Chile’s Atacama Desert is one of the driest places on Earth, thanks to its position in a rain shadow, high atmospheric pressure, and cool winds from the ocean. ...Coupled with a lack of light pollution, these are among the best factors for optimal stargazing. Take a tour of the night sky with San Pedro de Atacama Celestial Explorations. They guide heavenly viewings via both naked eye and through an array of specially aligned telescopes. When the tour wraps up around 2 a.m., continue your sky viewing with the Star Chart app for i-devices, from your private terrace at Tierra Atacama, one of the National Geographic Unique Lodges of the World. spaceobs.com natgeolodges.com
Written by Jill K. Robinson. Photograph by Victor Lima.
3 A.M. in Tel Aviv
Tel Aviv has no last call, only last customers. Start the night by wandering down Allenby Street to Lucifer, which boasts rather unconventional decor: big screens peeping on passersby on the street. ...Fresh air and affordable beers, such as city favorite Goldstar, can be found a few blocks away at HaMinzar. When crowds elsewhere start to thin, head to late-night spots like beachside Clara or underground club The Cat and the Dog. At the Breakfast Club, pumping techno and house music keeps the party pulsating until it’s time for bacon and eggs at nearby Benedict, open around-the-clock. 
Written by Christine Blau. Photograph by Adi Adinayev.
4 A.M. in Northern Ireland
The Finn Lough hotel's greatest amenity? The starry night sky. This lakeside retreat, located in County Fermanagh, Northern Ireland, boasts a band of bubble domes that offer 180-degree clear walls for optimal stargazing. ...The best part? You don’t even have to leave the room’s four-poster bed, crafted by a local furniture maker, in order to stare up at the ceiling of sparkling constellations. And, after a full 24 hours of travelling around the world, you definitely deserve some rest. finnlough.com
Written by Hannah Sheinberg. Photograph by Tyler Collins.