These are my answers for a recent email swap I did on swap-bot called "Where on Earth Have You Been?", it asked for you to name 10 places you've been that you really enjoyed and to tell a little about each place. This photo is one I took in Egypt.
1. Cairo, Egypt
One of the most amazing places I've ever visited. We went to the pyramids on the Giza Plateau, and I went inside the middle pyramid all the way to the center. I also saw the Sphinx which is in the same area. We went to the Cairo Museum, and I was able to see things that had come from King Tutankhamen's tomb including all the gold things. We had to be searched and go through a separate metal detector to go into the "gold" room. I tried my hand at bargaining with the vendors that tried to sell me things, and because I'd taken dollars and not cypriot pounds, I got everything half of what the others got things for since I would dicker until it was one dollar instead of one pound (2 dollars equalled 1 pound at that time). Our bus had a big bullet hole in the front glass, and we had armed soldiers watching over us at all times.
2. Niagara Falls, New York
I went to visit a friend of mine in Buffalo, NY in springtime, and there was a terrible ice storm. I am from the south so I was a little scared, especially since I had to drive in the snow and ice. They decided to take me to Niagara Falls, and it was very beautiful though the viewing area and all around the falls were all frozen. I wish I'd owned a nice camera at the time but I didn't so I didn't get many good photos of it but it was a great experience.
3. Bethlehem & Jerusalem, Israel
I took a cruise while living in Cyprus, Greece to both Israel and Egypt (see #1), so our first destination was Israel. We went to Bethlehem first, and I went into the church where they say Jesus was born, I put my hand into the hole in the floor to touch the rock they say he was born on. It was interesting, and the church was gorgeous. We then went to the Mount of Olives and I took some photos of Jerusalem in the distance, then into Jerusalem where we followed the Via Delorosa (the way Jesus supposedly traveled on his way to the cross). There was a spot in the wall all worn down where they say he put his hand to rest, I put my hand there as well. We went into the church where they say he was crucified, it was very extravagant and beautiful. We then went to the Wailing Wall, and saw people praying there. There was a woman's section and a male section to pray and stuff prayers into the old wall.
4. Daniel Stowe Botanical Garden near Charlotte, North Carolina
Last spring, we had the chance to see this garden and I took so many photos, it was crazy! All the spring flowers were in bloom, and they have an orchid conservatory that I had a great time taking photographs inside of. It's well worth a trip if you are ever in the area. It's laid out in various little gardens, and you can just walk through all over the area moving from one type of garden to the next. I also liked the topiaries they had.
5. Biltmore House and Gardens in Asheville, North Carolina
I have been to Biltmore House and Gardens twice now. Once was on our honeymoon, and we went on a behind the scenes tour. It's a gorgeous home. We also went once at Christmas and went on a rooftop tour. We got to see the gargoyles up close and personal! They had it decorated for Christmas - amazing! The tree in one part of the house was so huge, that they had full size tricycles as decorations hanging on it! They also have a vineyard there and we participated in a wine tasting.
6. Rhine Valley, Germany
After about 3 weeks traveling around German with a band, my husband and I took a brief vacation to the Rhine valley before heading home to America. We found a little inn online, and made all transactions that way. It was a nice place and the owners were very helpful. It was quite a walk from the train station though, we sure did get our exercise. We spent our few days riding the train up and down the Rhine river looking at various things such as all the old Castles, especially Rheinfels Castle. You could explore it all you wanted, even could go into the dungeon if you had a flashlight. We bought a cuckoo clock while on the Rhine as well, doesn't everyone? Haha.
7. Paphos, Cyprus
While living in Limassol, Cyprus I took several trips to Paphos. There are so many places to visit there, old castles and archeological ruins and such. I went parasailing in the Paphos Harbor (the Mediterranean), that was a lot of fun. I went to see the pillar where they say St. Paul was tied to and whipped on his first missionary journey to Cyprus. There was a big fence around it, so I crawled under it and got my picture taken with it, and then crawled back out. Fun! We went to the Tombs of the Kings which was very much like tombs in Egypt but they'd been dug for the aristocracy in Cyprus.
8. St. Louis, Missouri
While attending some classes in the early 90's in Missouri I took time to go to the St. Louis Arch and we went up to the top where I took some photos. It was a little scary, the elevator was so small and it jerked back and forth as it made it's way to the top. I was not afraid of heights at the time, so I really enjoyed it. Then we ate at a mcdonald's that was in a riverboat near the Arch.
9. Charleston, South Carolina
One of my favorite places to go in my own state. It's very historical and I love going to take photos there. I hope to go again really soon. One visit we did all the touristy things. We took a horse carriage ride through the historical district, and we went on a tour of the old dungeon area where it's said to be haunted. It was spooky. On another trip we ate at a famous restaurant near the old slave market named Hyman's Seafood. Lots of celebrities have eaten there and where they ate is marked by a little marker. There is an awesome place to buy postcards in the old market, and they have a lot of old confederate photos and souvenirs. I hope to go on a ghost tour sometime there, but I'm sure it would be super spooky.
10. Brookgreen Gardens & Atalaya, Murrells Inlet, South Carolina
I love gardens, and this was one I've been to a couple of times, but we never have enough time for me to really spend all day here. It's been only a few hours at a time. I still love it. It's huge and situated near the ocean, as well as the salt marsh. It's near where rice used to be grown and you can go on a boat ride on the old rice fields. It's a sculpture garden, so it's chock full of magnificent sculpture of everything under the sun from mythical creatures to animals, people, etc. Across the street from Brookgreen is Huntington Beach State Park and that is where you find Atalaya, which is an old home built in the style of a moorish castle by the Huntington's who started Brookgreen, as Mrs. Huntington was an avid sculptor.