From frescoes to a steep stepped climb, Sigiriya in Sri Lanka is a must visit. The history of Lion Rock and its fortress is a top attraction.
Immersing yourself with the locals many times means getting out of the flashing city lights and exploring smalls towns that are not known to receive hordes of tourists. In Sri Lanka that meant breaking away from the capital city of Colombo and heading northeast to Hiriwadunna Village.
Climbing the 368 stairs to the top of Bartolome island in the Galapagos made my brow trickle with sweat and scaling the 468 stairs of the Florence Duomo made my lungs [...]