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editor’s note


We’re celebrating cities in this issue, with four major features to fuel your urban adventures. ‘Two streets over’ is a term I’ve always liked using, representing original experiences just beyond the familiar sights: that bar the locals love, the quirky hidden museum, the tranquil park across from the hubbub.The idea is well represented in our exploration of the varied levels of New York City, from an underground supper club to views across Manhattan… from a height to set this vertigo sufferer’s knees knocking (p60). Next in our sequence is a story ranking (in a wilfully unscientific way) the unsung cities we say deserve to be on your radar (p72). We head on to hunt for the secrets of Santiago, the capital of Chile – the top country in Lonely Planet’s Best inTravel 2018 – and a fascinating place, all too often passed through by travellers en route to showboating natural spectacles like the Atacama Desert and Patagonia (p82). Our worldwide smorgasbord of cities is completed byTokyo and Kyoto, witnessed at the time of hanami – the viewing of cherry blossoms – through the lens of gifted photographer Will Elsom (p94). Let me sign off with a recommendation to keep a close eye out for next month’s issue, where we’ll be unveiling two exciting new front sections that my team is putting the finishing touches to right now.


@peter_grunert petervg73

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Lonely Planet
April 2018

Other Articles in this Issue

What Team Lonely Planet has been up to this month
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The highest point of Cyprus is the island’s very own
You don’t have to head far from the capital to get the best out of Thailand: start with a foodie tour of Bangkok’s markets, before retracing WWII heritage in Kanchanaburi, and feeling the peace among the temples of Ayuthaya. Now it’s island-hopping time, so make for the beach heaven of Ko Kut and the jungle interior of Ko Chang
North, south, east and west, begone. To take a true reading of New York City, look not left and right, but up and down – from an underground music club sunk below the concrete foundations to a wraparound rooftop observation deck, 70 storeys above the teeming sidewalks
Take the unexpected path with our countdown of 10 offbeat European cities
A nation that spans frozen fjords and dusty deserts, Chile claims the top spot in our Best in Travel list this year, making it the number-one country to visit in 2018. In the midst of these epic landscapes is the capital, Santiago – its skyscrapers rising tall against a backdrop of snowy sierras. Long bypassed by visitors to Chile, this city is currently undergoing a renaissance, with a lively arts scene, revived urban spaces and an evolving food culture. Here are eight stops to make on your own pilgrimage
Every spring in Japan, sakura (cherry blossom) forecasts are played on the radio and TV, just like the weather. The arrival of the blossoms heralds a nationwide festival to celebrate the passage of the seasons, the start of spring, and the fleeting beauty of the flowers. Hanami is the main format for celebrations, involving picnics and parties beneath the cherry trees. In popular spots, people book time off work and camp out to stake claim to the sought-after sakura. It’s a land grab! Other areas are quieter, though. The festival attracts people of different ages, professions and sensibilities: there’s a collective interest in the blossoms, and it’s a national spectacle. I love nature, so I found it interesting and profound to see a mass of people paying such respect to the seasonal cycle in the urban environments of Tokyo and Kyoto, which I visited for this project. Joining in this centuries-old tradition made me feel a part of something precious. I especially liked the notion of wabi-sabi that underpins the festival: it is the philosophy of appreciating something in all its forms, and seeing beauty in imperfection
With its moors and dales, fishing ports and cathedrals of industry, 'God's Own County' is rich in sights and experiences. Here you'll find our pick of the highlights, with a special section on the historic hub city of York
Explore the American capital in the season that suits it best: spring. Take your pick from grand monuments and sculpture gardens, outdoors markets and trips by paddleboat in parks full of cherry blossom
The city of siestas naturally thrives at night. Use this guide to explore the Spanish capital in its element - after sundown. You'll find food, bars, clubs and late-night sights, plus a special section on the city's top tapas joints
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1 Which three countries begin (in English) with the letter