Wonderful cities around the world…. Starting with E

Wonderful cities around the world…. Starting with E

Take an adventure with Travelling King through this series, showing you all the wonderful cities of the world from A to Z. We have joined up with countless amazing Travel Bloggers throughout this series to come up with some great experiences about these cities. We will tell you why we love these cities, what we love doing and suggest a few places to stay. Lets continue on with cities around the world starting with E.

See the previous Amazing cities around the world.

Edinburgh (Scotland)

Ian from MoverDB tells us about Edinburgh

Edinburgh is arguably the best city in the UK to both visit and live in. For a city its size, it has a huge amount going on in terms of culture, nightlife, dinning and shopping. Plus, since its much smaller than London, it’s much less hectic and you can visit most of it on foot, which is the best way to see any city.

While tourist head to Edinburgh Castle for views of the city, I’d say you’re better off climbing Arthur’s Seat and/or Calton Hill for the best views of the city. And best of all both are completely free.

In terms of museums you’re spoiled for choice with the National Museum of Scotland (free), Scottish National Gallery, City Art Centre, Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art, Scottish National Portrait Gallery, Surgeons’ Hall Museums, Museum on the Mound, and Museum of Edinburgh, among others all located in the city.

If you want to try whisky (without the e), you can find many great drams in virtually of Edinburgh’s pubs. However, for something truly unique head to Usquabae Whisky Bar to try some of their amazing selection. And for the truly serious, consider a membership to The Scotch Malt Whisky Society which offers whisky’s you literally can not find anywhere else on earth.

Finally, if you want to try Scotland’s national dish, Haggis, head to the Sir Walter Scott Tea Room, the Last Drop, and/or Greyfriars Bobby’s Bar, the latter being named after Bobby a Skye Terrier who spent 14 years watching over his master’s grave after he died.

Weird fact and outlandish Laws about Edinburgh:
– Edinburgh residents in the 17th century believed that rubbing the burnt ashes of dove’s droppings on their heads would cure baldness.

– it is illegal for a boy under the age of 10 to see a naked mannequin.
– It is illegal in Scotland to be drunk and in charge of a cow

Read more on Edinburgh:

aerial view from calton hill, edinburgh, uk

Essaouira (Morocco)

Summer from Los Angeles urban adventures tells us about Essaouira

Essaouira lies on the Atlantic coast two hours drive west of Marrakech. Nestled on a a small peninsula between an arched sandy beach and rugged rocks, its landscape is dramatic and enchanting. A long low sea wall separates the main square from the port providing the perfect place to watch the waves crash into the city or the sun set over its horizon. Seagulls provide the soundrack here and majestic evergreens dot the ocean boardwalk. The vibe is chill and tranquil.

Originally a port city, Essaouira is has always hosted vistors, at one time home to several European embassies, and boasts and somewhat international vibe, with quirky expats aplenty and delicious Italian and French food available. More recently a fisherman’s town, scouring the port and market for fresh sardines, shrimip, sea bass and eel are must-dos for everyone in town, both local and visitor.

Locals love music too, and one of the largest festivals in Morocco takes place here every summer–the Festival de Gnaoua et Musique du Mondes, highlighting the enchanting rhythms of the region’s traditional Gnawa music. You’re almost certain to catch some sort of art or music festival when in town so be sure to check the program at Dar Souiri, the city’s cultural center.

Otherwise, Essaouira begs to be lingered in, explored at a slow pace–a cafe beckoning on every corner of the medina, hidden plazas giving way to markets, food stalls and daily life just passing by ever so much slower than its big city counterparts.

Weird fact and outlandish Laws about Essaouira:
– Also a funny quirk is that locals have a tradition of challenging those who claim to be true Souris (from Essaouira) but testing their knowledge of lyrics to an old folklore jingle. If the challengee replies correctly, then they’ve passed the test, proving their connection to the city!

– It’s illegal to drive in the old medina (walled city) but the upper curst locals often take advantage of their status and get away with it.

Aerial view on old city of Essaouira in MoroccoEl Valle (Panama)

Rob from Namu Travel Group tells us about El Valle

One of the most inhabited volcanic valleys in the world, El Valle de Antón (commonly referred to as ¨El Valle¨ among both locals and foreigners, and occasionally ¨Anton Valley¨ among expats) is a quaint and charming 7 square-mile village that has thrived to become a one-of-a-kind resort.

El Valle is most frequently visited for the inherently cleansing qualities of the region´s volcanic mud baths and thermal pools. Deep-tissue massages, spas and yoga retreat centers are also enjoyed by many, in addition to the hikes, waterfalls, organic farms, canopy tours, flora and fauna observatories and more that El Valle intrinsically offers.

Return to a simplistic and balanced style of living, reflected in the local resident´s use of bicycles as a common form of transportation in El Valle´s flat terrain. The town center´s daily marketplace offers much more than fresh produce, but handmade paintings, baskets and indigenous crafts made by the Guna women, in addition to other beautiful pieces of art and design.

With an ever-growing number of family-owned restaurants, cafés, bakeries and more, a wide variety of natural cuisine, including local cooking classes, is designed for residents and visitors to enjoy food. Bring a light sweater to El Valle and prepare for a culinary and tranquil experience as you discover why this has become Panama´s popular weekend retreat.

El Valle de Anton in Panama. El Valle is considered one of the most beautiful places in Panama.

Elche (Spain)

Nicola from Spain Holiday tells us about Elche

The city of Elche in Alicante, Spain is a compact city and it is possible to see a lot of its history, culture and natural wonders on foot in a day.

Elche is famous the largest palm plantation in Europe, originally planted by the Moors.  The Palm Grove of Elche “El Palmeral de Elche”, contains more than 200,000 palm trees, mostly date palms, and is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The dates are harvested annually dating (no pun intended) back to the 5th century!

The palm leaves are also used for the Palm Sunday Easter Procession in Elche.

The Dama de Elche is a stone bust statue depicting an Iberian priestess in ceremonial robes dating back to the fifth century B.C. to this period. It is considered to be one of the most important Iberian art works ever found.  A replica of the statue is on display in Elche, where it was discovered.

The Basilica of Santa Maria, in Plaza de Santa Maria, which is built in the Baroque style in the 17th century. On the 14th-15th August each year, Elche stages its unique mystery play inside the basilica. The mystery play, which UNESCO has declared to be a heritage masterpiece, tells the story of the Assumption and Coronation in Heaven of Mary with a rousing mix of drama, music and passion.

Elche is a shoe lover’s paradise.  It is the largest producer of footwear in Spain. To pick up a bargain pair of heels head to the largest shoe factory outlet in Europe, Salvador Artesano factory, on the city’s outskirts, which has thousands of shoes from sportswear to high-heeled party shoes on offer.

Weird fact and outlandish Laws about Elche:
– There are over 1000 shoe manufacturer factories in Elche
– With over 200,000 palm trees, Elche has the biggest palm grove in Europe.

Elche, Spain - A birds-eye-view over the Palau Square in Elche, Spain, highlighting the dome and the belltower of the Basilica of Santa Maria church, dedicated to the Virgin Mary

El Nido (Philippines)

Jo from WanderWithJo tells us about El Nido

El Nido is perhaps the most enchanting part of Palawan in The Philippines. I fell in love as soon as I got there. With its white sand beaches and marble cliffs, it is easy to fall for it.

For me, the best part was the island hopping tours. You can enjoy an array of activities like fishing, snorkelling, swimming in the blue green waters or diving. There are many spots where you can watch the underwater world come alive with colourful corals and exotic fish.

Don’t miss this paradise as it is sure to steal your heart, like it did mine.

Weird Fact – You can catch your own fish in most tours and sometimes if you don’t catch any (as a group), you might have to skip lunch or survive on fruits.

I didn’t catch a single fish and in fact I fed them as they easily ate the bait and swam away before I could reel-in. Luckily, the boat driver our guides and few fellow travellers caught plenty for everyone (Thank god – I am not a good at starving lol).

Read more on the Philippines:

Beautiful landscape scenery of El Nido coastline. Unique amazing Pinagbuyutan island in background framed by tree branches. Palawan, Philippines

El Chalten (Patagonia)

Rax from NomadsUnveiled tells us about El Chalten

El Chalten, the heart of Patagonia and arguably the hiking capital of the region. A small cozy town surrounded by stunning, expansive nature. From waterfalls to glaciers, this is where you discover the beauty of Patagonia. 

One of the best things about El Chalten is that it is surrounded by many trails that start right at the edge of the town. This means no buses or transportation time needed to get to the trail head. You can look at the weather in the morning and immediately decide if you want to embark on a trek. 
There are many popular trails around the town with different difficulty levels. They can range from a couple of hours to a full day hike. You can even combine treks and make it a multi day adventure into the wilderness.
Many travelers also wander off into nature to rock climb or simply meditate. It is an open paradise, but whatever you do, just make sure you can find your way back.
The town is most popular amongst backpackers and hikers, but there are options available for all types of travelers. You can choose to mingle in hostels, book a nice comfy cabin, park your camper van, or even pitch a tent at one of the campsites in between the different trails. 
Do note that the remote nature of the town means that facilities can be kind of unstable. This means you want to bring cash as much as possible, and be prepared for events like power outages. This is a place where you can indulge yourself in nature while having access to basic conveniences.

Fitz Roy mount in Los Glaciares National Park, El Chalten,Patagonia, Argentina.

Edmonton (Canada)

Robyn from Two Empty Passports tells us about Edmonton

I might be a little biased, since I grew up here, but Edmonton is a beautiful city to visit, in both summer and winter. A gorgeous river valley divides the city, with the dramatic downtown skyscrapers on one side and the old university on the other.

If you are a shopper, then West Edmonton Mall should be your first stop. West Edmonton Mall, or WEM as Edmontonians call it, is home to more than 800retailers, selling everything from children’s toys to outdoor BBQs to wedding dresses. The mall is home to numerous restaurants, food courts, a casino, three themed walking streets, a bowling alley, roller coaster theme park, water park,and an indoor skating rink. 

Downtown Edmonton is where tourists can visit the Alberta Legislative Building is located. Sitting on the edge of the river valley, this historical building can be appreciated inside and out. There are several fountains and parks surrounding the building. In winter, the fountain is turned into an outdoor ice rink for locals and visitors to enjoy.

There are also so many outdoor leisure activities to enjoy, including golf, skiing,biking, canoeing, and kayaking… enough to keep visitors busy and active.

And of course, a visit to Edmonton wouldn’t be complete without attending an Edmonton Oilers (NHL) hockey game in the newly built arena with 20,000+ seating, or an Edmonton Elks (CFL) football game. Good food, good entertainment, and a countryside that can’t be beat is just the start of exploring Edmonton.

Stay at the iconic Fantasy Land Hotel, located in West Edmonton Mall, with interesting,themed rooms and suites!

Weird Facts & Outlandish Laws in Edmonton:

– North America’s largest urban green space with over 7300 hectares.
– It is the largest northern city in North America.
– Edmonton has a bylaw banning the production of any generally offensive odors

Light trails from rush hour traffic light up Edmonton downtown Winter sunset skyline showing Walterdale Bridge across the frozen, snow-covered Saskatchewan River and surrounding skyscrapers.

Exeter (United Kingdom)

Exeter is the capital city of the county of Devon which is located in Southwest England, it sits along side of the River Exe. Exter is very well known for the Gothic Exeter Cathedral aka Cathedral Church of Saint Peter in Exeter, construction started in 1050 and then completely around the 1400s.

Exeter isn’t very touristy but there are some cool things to do when you visit, such as visiting the Gothic Exeter Cathedral or enjoying of a tour of 14th century underground passages which were used transport water from natural springs outside the walled city.

The Devon Hotel has been voted as the best hotel in Exeter by fellow travellers, its only 3km away from the city centre, making it easy to get into the city but far away enough to be relaxing.

Weird Facts & Outlandish Laws in Exeter:

– Exeter was called Isca Chester by the vikings
– Exeter was the last place in England where a woman was trialed and executed for witchcraft.

Exeter, Devon, England, UK - The West side of Exter Cathedral on a fine summer day.

Edessa (Greece)

Norm from Travel Younger to tell us about Edessa

Edessa, Greece, is probably not on your travel radar, but this town, along with the rest of northern Greece, should be! Edessa is called the “City of Waterfalls,” and the BIG ONE is called “Karanos,” and just a few yards to one side are a double falls, called, Lamda.

Fun fact: we usually think that a waterfall erodes the ground beneath it, but the lip of these falls actually GROW! The travertine in the water, which is a form of marble, accumulates and grows over time, so that that lip now protrudes further out that in years past. Below the falls is a small cave that is being enclosed drop by drop with every molecule of water that touches it.

Another fun thing: from the top of the falls you can see a bridge down below. Find a way down there and you can view the falls from below, along with coming back UP through the spray! Wet, fun, and exhilarating. (I have a video if you want it)

If you like cherries—and figs—the Edessa region is the largest growing area in the country, and just a short drive to other great fruit: wine grapes! Add Edessa to your itinerary, starting in the city of Thessaloniki, about 90 minutes south. Take your time since you will be driving over history that abounds in that area, including the birthplace of Alexander the Great and his city of Pella.

Gorgeous view of famous Edessa waterfalls. Beautiful nature backgrounds. Greece.

El Paso (Texas, USA)

Emily from The Female Abroad to tell us about El Paso

Known as “Sun City” and famous because of the Fort Bliss military base, El Paso has really started to blossom over the last ten years or so and is starting to become a must visit for foodies due to the impressive culinary scene. Besides food they also have a thriving theater scene and great museums. My favorite hotel is the Hotel Paso Del Norte – Autograph Collection – mostly because of the rooftop pool. 

  1. It constantly makes the top 10 safest American cities
  2. There are no basements in the city due to the soil featuring too much clay which causes it to move around too much
  3. Even though it is on the US / Mexico boarder and has some of the sunniest weather in the entire country, they still get snow. 
  4. Weird laws: it is illegal to own an encyclopedia because it contains the recipe for making beer. Also, if you want to go barefoot you will have to buy a $5 permit to do so. 

El Paso, Texas, USA downtown city skyline at dusk with Juarez, Mexico in the distance.

Thank you to everyone who contributed to this article 🙂

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Wonderful cities around the world…. Starting with E

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