The towns where travellers lose track of time

The towns where travellers lose track of time

It was only supposed to be a couple of days; time enough to check out the temple you’d read about, pick up some bargains in the market, and mosey round the town before you head off to the next stop on your travels.

Yet somehow it’s a week later and not only are you still there, but you can’t see yourself leaving anytime soon. You have a favourite bar where the staff greet you like an old friend, and the receptionist in your guesthouse has a look of weary bemusement at your daily request to stay for just one more night.

You’re not alone: whether it’s a fortnight’s holiday or a year-long adventure, many travellers on a multi-destination trip find themselves spending longer than intended in one place. Here are our picks of some of the top spots in which to lose track of time, plus the reasons why they’re so damn hard to leave.

What to see and doThe Pura Taman Saraswati temple, set behind a pond crowded with lotus blossom, makes the perfect backdrop to catch a traditional Balinese dance performance. Take a walk in the Sacred Forest Monkey Sanctuary but be warned, if you’re carrying any food your serenity won’t last long with those cheeky primates around.

Antigua, Guatemala – too much to learn

Heading to Antigua to brush up on your Spanish or take your first steps in learning the language? Then prepare to be amazed, not just by the town’s renowned Spanish schools but also the cultural richness crammed into its colourful and characterful streets. Packed with religious sights, museums and galleries, Antigua’s historical significance has earned it Unesco World Heritage Site status. If that wasn’t enough then Antigua’s colonial beauty and captivating setting will soon have you under its spell.

What to see and do

There are dozens of Spanish schools to choose from, the oldest of which is Proyecto Lingüístico Francisco Marroquín. Pay a visit to the sunshine yellow church of La Merced and the abandoned Convent of Las Capuchinas.

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