10Best: Kingdoms Around the World

  • Tatksang Monastery in Bhutan

    Kingdom of Bhutan

    The Himalayan Kingdom of Bhutan sits tucked between Nepal, Myanmar and Bangladesh and remains one of the most off-the-beaten-path destinations in the region. Besides trekking amid snow-capped peaks, visitors to Bhutan will find a host of lovely Buddhist monasteries and a schedule full of colorful cultural festivals.

    Photo courtesy of StephenChing/iStock

  • Kingdom of Bahrain

    The Kingdom of Bahrain, a small archipelago in the Persian Gulf, offers visitors a cultural experience of the Arabian Peninsula with much more relaxed Islamic law than some of its neighbors. The name Bahrain means "two seas" in Arabic, so you can bet that water-based activities are rather popular, especially given the hot, arid climate.

    Photo courtesy of aksphoto/iStock

  • Kingdom of Cambodia

    The crown jewel of the Kingdom of Cambodia is undoubtedly the temples of Angkor, but this fascinating Southeast Asian country also offers a distinct cuisine, excellent local markets, stunning natural scenery and a friendly culture.

    Photo courtesy of huad262/iStock

  • Copenhagen

    Kingdom of Denmark

    The peninsula and archipelago that makes up the Kingdom of Denmark serves as a crossroads between Scandinavia and Europe. There's something for everyone in this eco-friendly kingdom, including viking history, fairytale landscapes, sandy beaches, half-timbered villages and all the modern trappings of cities like Copenhagen.

    Photo courtesy of SeanPavonePhoto/iStock

  • Petra

    Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan

    Most travelers associate the Kingdom of Jordan with Petra, its most famous attraction, but there's much more to this desert nation than its mysterious lost city. The red rock formations of Wadi Rum have become a magnet for outdoor adventures, while Biblical sites dot the landscape along the Dead Sea on the border of Jordan and Israel.

    Photo courtesy of Burachet/iStock

  • Kingdom of Lesotho

    The Kingdom of Lesotho, nicknamed the "Kingdom of the Sky," is unique in that it's entirely surrounded by South Africa. The entire country lies over 3,000 feet above sea level, and the mountain scenery begs to be explored on foot. If your feet get tired from all that trekking, it's also possible to pony-trek from village to village.

    Photo courtesy of K. Kendall

  • Kingdom of Morocco

    The Kingdom of Morocco is a land filled with the stuff of many a traveler's dreams: rolling sand dunes, old walled cities, colorful bazaars, snow-capped mountains, maze-like streets and alfresco cafes. It's an exotic kingdom that occupies all your senses.

    Photo courtesy of lalo Fuentes

  • Kingdom of the Netherlands

    If you're planning a trip to the Kingdom of the Netherlands, you might be going to see the iconic windmills and tulips in Europe, but you might also be heading for a beach vacation in the Caribbean. Three sovereign island states, Curaçao, Aruba and Sint Maarten, are all part of the greater Kingdom of the Netherlands.

    Photo courtesy of catolla/iStock

  • Kingdom of Norway

    Considered one of the world's most beautiful countries, the Kingdom of Norway is perhaps most famous for its majestic fjords and the colorful and quaint towns that line them.

    Photo courtesy of Perszing1982/iStock

  • Mosque in Medina

    Kingdom of Saudi Arabia

    While the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia is slowly starting to open its doors to the outside world, it remains one of the world's last forbidden kingdoms with some of the most restrictive travel policies out there. For the foreseeable future, the kingdom of Mecca will remain the stuff of travel dreams and imagination.

    Photo courtesy of azaharphotography/iStock

  • Valencia

    Kingdom of Spain

    Art, architecture, food, history ... no matter what your travel interests, the Kingdom of Spain has it in spades. Another benefit of traveling to this exciting and diverse kingdom is that, depending on where you go, you'll have a completely different experience. A trip to the Moorish city of Granada will feel totally different than a beach vacation to Mallorca or museum-hopping in Barcelona.

    Photo courtesy of amoklv/iStock

  • Kingdom of Swaziland

    The Kingdom of Swaziland, one of the few remaining kingdoms on the African continent, is also one of Africa's smallest nations. Its excellent wildlife reserves and photo-worthy scenery make it a popular safari stopover between Mozambique and South Africa.

    Photo courtesy of Uros Ravbar/Hemera

  • Stockholm

    Kingdom of Sweden

    You'll find no shortage of amazing sights in the Kingdom of Sweden, no matter the season you visit. In the dead of winter, the skies of Lapland in the North light up with the colorful Aurora Borealis. In summer, head above the Arctic Circle to see the phenomenon known as Midnight Sun. Then you have Stockholm, one of the world's most beautiful capital cities.

    Photo courtesy of scanrail/iStock

  • Temple in Pakchong, Thailand

    Kingdom of Thailand

    From the rolling green hills of the north to the cerulean waters and sun-drenched beaches of the islands, the Kingdom of Thailand is no stranger to the top of traveler bucket lists.

    Photo courtesy of nok6716/iStock

  • Kingdom of Tonga

    The Kingdom of Tonga is the self-proclaimed "place where time begins" due to its position just east of the international date line. The series of some 170 islands that make up the kingdom offer spectacular diving and snorkeling, countless white sand beaches, top-notch whale watching and a traditional culture that hasn't experienced quite as much outside influence as nearby Samoa.

    Photo courtesy of Sarah Kelemen Garber

  • United Kingdom

    You can't mention kingdoms without including what might be the most famous of them all, the United Kingdom. This particular kingdom consists of Scotland, Wales, England and Northern Ireland.

    Photo courtesy of Boarding1Now/iStock

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