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20 Best Budget Travel Destinations I’d Go At Least Once In My Life

20 Best Budget Travel Destinations I’d Go At Least Once In My Life

If you’re planning your next travel adventure on a limited budget, there’s good news. Price of Travel recently published the Backpacker Index of 136 countries for 2016.

The index is based on the price for a group of things, per day, for each city. Included is a dorm bed at a good and low-cost hostel, three value-for-money meals, two public transportation rides, one paid cultural attraction and three cheap beers.

To ensure diversity in terms of countries represented, we have excluded countries that appear more than once in the top 20 of the index, selecting the next best option. Here are 20 best budget travel destinations based on July 20th, 2016 Exchange rates:

1. Krakow, Poland

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    Photo Credit: Marcin Grabski via Flickr

    Krakow is one of Europes most interesting and affordable cities.

    1. Average daily budget: $24.83
    2. Main attractions/things to do
    • Auschwitz, the biggest Nazi German labour and concentration camp
    • Wawel Castle – this former castle is now a museum.
    • Bunker of Modern Art – museum located in the center of town.
    • Free walking tours daily

    2. Kiev, Ukraine

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      1. Average daily budget: $21.73
      2. Main attractions/things to do
      • Chernobyl Museum
      • Kiev’s Metro Stations, a byproduct of the Soviet era
      • Kievo-Pecherska Lavra – this monastery is one of the top attractions

      3. Belgrade, Serbia

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        Photo Credit: Nikola Smolenski/Vlada Marinkovic via Wikipedia under Creative Commons
        1. Average daily budget: $27.03
        2. Main attractions/things to do
        • Kalemegdan – Belgrade Fortress – this citadel is a top tourist destination
        • Palace of Princess Ljubice
        • Nikola Tesla Museum dedicated towards the famous scientist and inventor.

        4. Hanoi, Vietnam

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          Photo Credit: Hanoi Tourism

          Whilst Hanoi – the capital of Viet Nam – is more traditional, with less to do than the bigger Saigon, the busy city center makes up for this.

          1. Average daily budget: $17.14
          2. Main attractions/things to do
          • Overnight trips to the famous Halong Bay.
          • Hoa Lo Prison – this is where John McCain spent time during the American/Vietnam War.
          • The Water Puppet Theatre is one of the top attractions.
          • Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum allows you to see this leaders preserved body as you walk through the tomb.

          5. Goa, India

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            Photo Credit: Lonely Planet

            Beaches and bars. Need one say more.

            1. Average daily budget: $18.42
            2. Main attractions/things to do
            • Paradiso Club in Anjuna – this is a famous disco in the area.
            • Beaches – take time to unwind on the many beaches in the area.

            6. Chiang Mai, Thailand

            1280px-Phra-Singh_Temple_Chiang_Mai.-min
              Photo Credit: Panupong Roopyai via Wikimedia Commons

              After Bangkok, Chiang Mai is the second largest and second most popular cultural city.

              1. Average daily budget: $19.07
              2. Main attractions/things to do
              • Chiang Mai National Museum
              • Museum of World Insects and Natural Wonders
              • Wat Phrathat Doi Suthep – this temple overlooks the city from the top of the mountain. There is a cable car which can take you up the last stretch.

              7. Vientiane, Lao People’s Republic Democratic Republic

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              Buddha-Park-3
                Photo Credit: Remy Rossi via DHTRAVEL
                1. Average daily budget: $20.00
                2. Main attractions/things to do
                • Lao National Museum – this is the countries largest and most comprehensive museum.
                • Patuxai (Victory Gate) – staircases through several gift shops guide you to majestic views.
                • Wat Si Saket/Sisaket Museum – known for the hundreds of small buddha statues.

                8. Quito, Ecuador

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                  Photo Credit: Deviantart

                  Quito has spring-like weather all year round. This combined with high altitude gives it an exotic feel. Is is often the starting point of those who wish to venture to the Galapagos Islands.

                  1. Average daily budget: $22.20
                  2. Main attractions/things to do
                  • Teleferico cable car – provides stunning views of the city.
                  • Museo del Banco Central is the main museum, offering a mix of history and art.

                  9. Cairo, Egypt

                  the-sphinx-at-gizacairo-in-egypt-with-the-pyramid-of-chephren-khafre-in-the-background
                    Photo Credit: Domonik Golenia via FW
                    1. Average daily budget: $23.03
                    2. Main attractions/things to do
                    • Great Pyramids & Sphinx
                    • Great Pyramid of Khufu – the largest of the pyramids
                    • Mummy exhibit – contained within the museum, this is a separate fee
                    • Ride a camel
                    • Egyptian Museum

                    10. Colombo, Sri-Lanka

                    Sunset in Colombo
                      1. Average daily budget: $23.13
                      2. Main attractions/things to do
                      • Colombo Zoological Gardens

                      11. Phnom Phen, Cambodia

                      Phnom-Penh-4
                        Photo Credit: brendansadventures.com
                        1. Average daily budget: $23.75
                        2. Main attractions/things to do
                        • Royal Palace/Silver Pagoda – the main palace of the country.
                        • Killing Fields of Choeung Ek – the memorial is to be found 20 min outside town. A must visit.
                        • Wat Phnom – this is where the city gets its name from. This temple is the most impressive and is found on a mountain overlooking the town.

                        12. Bucharest, Romania

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                          Photo Credit: fusion-of-horizons via Flickr

                          Bucharest is one of Europes cheaper larger cities.

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                          1. Average daily budget: $23.94
                          2. Main attractions/things to do
                          • Parliament Palace – this Soviet-era structure is the second largest building in the world.
                          • Museum of the Romanian Peasant – immensely popular.

                          13. Manila, Philippines

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                            Photo Credit: travel-oriented via Flickr

                            Manila is becoming increasingly popular among cultural travelers. And there is no shortage of things to do.

                            1. Average daily budget: $24.68
                            2. Main attractions/things to do
                            • National Museum of the Philippines – displays of the history and the contemporary culture are too be found.
                            • Ayala Museum – special exhibitions are often showcased here.

                            14. Sofia, Bulgaria

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                              Photo Credit: Lauras Eye via Flickr

                              Sofia is not a destination that many would of mentioned in the past, but this is changing rapidly as people explore post-soviet life and the history and culture of the city.

                              1. Average daily budget: $25.99
                              2. Main attractions/things to do
                              • Walking tour of Sofia or bicycle tour – guided tour of the city to see the main sights
                              • St. Alexander Nevsky Cathedral museum – it is free to enter the orthodox cathedral, but there is a charge for entering the crypt.

                              15. Pokhara, Nepal

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                                Photo Credit: Sharada Prasad CS via Flickr

                                Pokhara – the capital of Nepal – is often one of the first stops after arriving in Kathmandu and also the city with the most bang for your buck.

                                1. Average daily budget: $15.75
                                2. Main attractions/things to do
                                • Devis Falls – popular waterfall. Don’t bother during winter as the waterfall is merely a trickle.
                                • Trekking – can add to the cost, but do some research and shop around. The Annapurna circuit is popular.
                                • Huge choice of restaurants and bars serving a selection of food from around the world.

                                16. Jakarta, Indonesia

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                                Monumen_nasional_jakarta-min
                                  Photo Credit: Mikael07 via Wikimedia Commons

                                  Jakarta is the main hub for accessing almost anywhere in Indonesia

                                  1. Average daily budget: $26.81
                                  2. Main attractions/things to do
                                  • Monas (National Monument) – Whilst the monument itself receives mixed reviews, the top of the tower offers the best views.

                                  17. Yangon, Myanmar

                                  Karaweik-Palace-min
                                    Photo Credit: Ralf-André Lettau via Wikimedia Commons
                                    1. Average daily budget: $26.96
                                    2. Main attractions/things to do
                                    • Shwedagon Pagoda – this is the most important religious site in the country and should be on top of your list.

                                    18. Mexico City, Mexico

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                                      Photo Credit: Blok 7 via Flickr
                                      1. Average daily budget: $27.10
                                      2. Main attractions/things to do
                                      • Sightseeing bus tour – a tour that gives you hop-on, hop-off privileges
                                      • Chapultepec Castle – provides stunning city views
                                      • National Museum of Anthropology – visit the acclaimed museum.

                                      19. Fez, Morocco

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                                        Photo Credit: Nick M via Flickr
                                        1. Average daily budget: $27.13
                                        2. Main attractions/things to do
                                        • Shopping
                                        • Wander the complicated Medinas with a guide (recommended)

                                        Cities excluded to allow for diversity of locations:
                                        Saigon (Viet Nam), Kathmandu (Nepal), Luang Prabang (Lao People’s Democratic Republic), Delhi (India), Mumbai (India), Bangkok (Thailand), Hoi An (Viet Nam)

                                        20. La Paz, Bolivia

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                                          La Paz has extreme altitude and a climate that never changes. It is regarded as one of the most unique cities in the world.

                                          1. Average daily budget: $25.26
                                          2. Main attractions/things to do
                                          • Coca Museum – the cocaine trade is discussed.
                                          • Museum San Francisco – Bolivias historical artifacts can be found here.

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                                          Nick Darlington

                                          Nick is a Multipotentialite, an entrepreneur, a blogger and a traveler.

                                          Study Says Art Makes You Mentally Healthier, Even If You’re Not Good At It When You Can Stop Yourself From Multitasking, Your Brain Will Start To Change How Silence Affects Our Brains in A Good Way, Science Explains 5 Things That Will Happen When You Wake Up Two Hours Earlier For A Month Why Overthinkers Are Probably Creative Problem-Solvers

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                                          Last Updated on September 10, 2019

                                          7 Morning Rituals to Empower Your Day And Change Your Life

                                          7 Morning Rituals to Empower Your Day And Change Your Life

                                          Most of your reality is not a given. It is shaped by your expectations, beliefs and thoughts you have formed about it. A big chunk of these beliefs and expectations are encoded into habits you integrate in your daily life.

                                          Yes, some of these habits are formed unconsciously and can be counter-productive or limiting but conversely, you can consciously form positive habits that will transform and empower your life significantly.

                                          This is a powerful point of departure that more and more people are becoming aware of. The most common trait of highly successful people is the recognition of the power they have in co-creating their reality through changing the way they think, believe or expect their reality to be.

                                          One of the most effective ways of changing our belief patterns is through practising and maintaining daily rituals. Ancient traditions had clearly understood the power of rituals in reinforcing habits and changing the way we see and create our reality a long, long time ago.

                                          Once again, if you look into the life history of any highly successful individual, you will find some form of ritual in their daily routine. Some of these rituals may seem banal or eccentric but don’t be deceived by appearances. Rituals are one of the most effective self-empowering tools freely available at the practitioner’s disposal – that is, you!

                                          Below are some the easiest yet life-changing morning rituals you can do every day. Of course, you can have your own afternoon or bed-time rituals but morning rituals are extremely effective in empowering your day since they help you charge yourself before it all starts.

                                          1. Gratitude

                                          Feeling gratitude and appreciation for those little signs and moments of joy happening in your life is probably one of the most overlooked or underestimated rituals. It is a perfect morning ritual to start your day on a very positive key.

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                                          The real power of gratitude is that it makes you pick out and focus on what is working in your life – what is in tune with your being as a whole. It is selectively positive. It reinforces happiness and positivity by shedding light on those awesome things, small or big, that grace your everyday living.

                                          Quite often, we just pick out the pain points, the problems, the bottle necks, whatever it is that is not working in our life and causing friction, anxiety and unhappiness. This is like constantly rewriting the script of your life with a negative or tragic overtone. Your subconscious mind follows faithfully that script you write whether it is a negative or positive one.

                                          So feeling gratitude is undoubtedly an immensely empowering ritual. Start your day by being thankful for those positive things that happened the previous day or throughout the week. It could be something really petty and small. It doesn’t matter. You might be grateful for an unexpected visit from an old friend, a beautiful encounter with a kind stranger, a new opportunity or whatever it is that shines your way. Do it every morning and see what happens during the day.

                                          Gratitude-Quotes

                                            2. Writing Down Your Most Important Tasks

                                            This is a very practical ritual. Start your day by identifying and writing down from one to three of the most important tasks you need to complete during that day. These tasks are ones which support important long term goals that are aligned to your purpose, passion or general direction in life.

                                            For example, if writing a book or building an online community are important long term goals which are aligned to your personal growth, then an important task for the day might be finishing off a particular page or two of the book or coming up with fresh content ideas for the online community.

                                            What is important with this ritual is that you identify these tasks and complete them as early in the day as possible. Of course, you will have other tasks apart from the ones you will write down but, these are tasks which can be tackled later or batched up and carried out in one go.

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                                            Writing down your most important tasks in the morning helps you focus your day and life according to what is essential. It helps you prioritize and manage your time better. As a result, you simplify your life by applying your focus and energy on what really counts for your overall life progress.

                                            3. Affirm Your Goals in Writing or Drawing

                                            This is similar to the previous idea but different in its application and purpose. Writing down your most important tasks of the day is a way to have a concrete structure of action to follow. Affirming your goals, on the other hand, is a very powerful way of crystallizing your vision and goals in life into your everyday mental space.

                                            Writing down or doodling your goals on a piece of paper helps you externalize those goals by giving them form. In return, they are reflected back in your subconscious mind and thus, reinforcing them and integrating them more wholly.

                                            An example of this would be writing down “I am achieving greater success in my career” or “I am becoming healthier and stronger through my exercise.” Notice the present tense being used as a way to tell yourself you are in the process already. Remember the life script we subconsciously follow? You are basically modifying the script to be applied now in the present.

                                            Drawing or doodling can be equally, or even more, effective  (if you are more of a visual person) as it summarizes a graphical representation of your goals. For example, if your goal is to build a new house or live in another country, you can draw the house or draw things that symbolise the country you want to live in.

                                            write down goals

                                              4. Practice Qi Gong Exercises

                                              According to Chinese philosophy, Qi (pronounced ‘Chee’) means the life force or energy inherent in all things;[1] and Qi Gong is the practice to cultivate and circulate that energy in your body. This may sound esoteric or complicated but actually, Qi Gong is really a set of simple exercises aimed at increasing your health and vitality.

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                                              There are numerous forms and practices available for free through the online media. As a morning ritual, I recommend following these simple exercises by Qi Gong master Lee Holden:

                                              5. Drink Hot Water with Lemon

                                              Simply add a slice of lemon in a glass of hot water and drink one every morning. This is a very simple ritual I follow faithfully every morning.

                                              Apart from being a good source of vitamin C and a great way of flushing out toxins in the morning, it balances and maintains the PH levels in the body, reduces pain and inflammation in joints and knees and helps nourishing brain and nerve cells. Here are some more benefits of drinking hot water with lemon.

                                              6. Rise Earlier

                                              The practical advantages of waking up early are obvious.

                                              For example, you gain more time for doing exercise such as walking, cycling or Qi Gong as suggested above. You gain more time to be with yourself to reflect, meditate or, more importantly, carry out the other morning rituals.

                                              So rising early can be seen as a foundation for all the other morning rituals. Many, like myself, find that they are more productive in the early hours of the day.

                                              Also, various studies have shown that there are many other benefits from waking up an hour or two earlier in the morning. Sleeping early and waking up early helps the body attune with the earth’s circadian rhythms thus, promoting more restorative sleep. Other curious results from such studies show, for instance, that early risers tend to be more optimistic and can anticipate and solve problems more efficiently than the norm.[2]

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                                              7. Listen to Uplifting Music

                                              Uplifting music can have a direct impact on our mood, especially in the morning. It charges us emotionally and tunes us into a more positive outlook of the day ahead.

                                              Most people wake up to music or listen to music as they commute to work. Very often, however, they tune in to a radio or randomly pick a playlist from their device. Being more selective and conscious of the music you listen to in the morning can have a great impact on your day and life in general.

                                              It’s funny how we try to choose music according to our mood. For example if you are feeling down or disappointed by something, you are more prone to listen to music that reflects that mood – for instance blues, sad songs or downtempo music. This has the effect of reinforcing that mood. What you need to do is the exact opposite and retune your mood by listening to music that beats to a different tune than that mood.

                                              Try to listen to more uplifting music in the morning even if, or especially if, your mood does not dictate so.

                                              More About Energetic Habits & Rituals

                                              Featured photo credit: Carli Jeen via unsplash.com

                                              Reference

                                              [1] Live Science: What Is Qi Gong
                                              [2] Harvard Business Review: Defend Your Research: The Early Bird Really Does Get the Worm

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