The city took its name from Athena, goddess of wisdom, strategy and war, and protector of the city. The financial, political and administrative center of the country and an all-powerful city-state in antiquity, Athens is a major center of culture. A visit to the first-ever museum dedicated to Byzantium, a stroll around the National Garden and a trip to the Olympeion archaeological site will take you back through time.
To reach the world’s longest golf course, one must travel a long way. For me, this meant a flight southwest across China from Shanghai to Kunming, capital of Yunnan Province. And from Kunming it was still another hop, a short one, to the village of Lijiang, a place of myth and fable now preserved as a UNESCO World Heritage site. My long journey ended at the Banyan Tree Lijiang. This top-notch villa resort shimmers like a mirage on the high, remote, nearly empty Yunnan plateau. There the Banyan Tree staff had already booked a tee time and taxi for Jade Dragon Snow Mountain Golf Course the next morning.