1. Camping out in the White Desert, Egypt.
With its white chalky formations, the White desert can seem like another world, a sci-fi movie, another planet or just a dream. It was our home one full moon night. We peeked out of our tent to watch the moon sparkle over a sea where the waves had turned into marble like statues. Mesmerizing.
2. Homestay on Elephantine Island
Letting a stranger share your home, is a big trust. The banks of the Nile are not short of luxury hotels, but a homestay is a glimpse into the lives of people whose land you are visiting. It is trust and exchange on both sides.
3. Fauzi Azar by Abraham hostels, Nazareth
This old Arab mansion has an old-world charm that takes you back in history. Pictures of Fauzi Azar and his family still adorn the walls. Guests can lounge in the courtyard. Grilled doors, high ceilings; verandahs hang over the narrow alleyways which crisscross the old town of Nazareth. Drink your coffee watching the day lighting up ancient houses around you gradually.
4. Garvault House in Kinbrace, Scotland
Garvault house prides itself as being the most remote bed and breakfast in the UK mainland. Surrounded by mountains, old fortresses, lakes and hiking trails- this is the one stop shop for revitalizing your soul. Judge by the picture whether the claim appears true.
5. Wild camping in Botswana
I did not know what wild camping was when I booked this. Sounded interesting and was much cheaper than a luxury lodge safari. Pleasantly surprised to realise how much more you get back for your money. Lions prowl around your tents at night and hyenas circle your dinner party. Induction points cover, what colour of glowing eyes you avoid at night- should you need to visit the earth dug loo.
6. Hostel Innsa, Barrio del Carmen, Valencia
An old mansion converted to a hostel. The dark woodwork, the arches and pillars and the heavy gated door hold echoes of the past. Lunches can turn into prolonged affairs of song, dance and leisurely chat. It boasts the best paella of Valencia- no mean claim.
7. PingYao Yide Hotel, Ping Yao, China
The walled city of PingYao is a 14th century time capsule. No new buildings are allowed. The only tourist accommodation are historic courtyard houses like the one in the picture here. The four poster beds need to be climbed on with short ladders and the rooms opened out to stone paved courtyards. Another way to step back into time.