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The Silk Road nation, perhaps the most impressive Stan of them all, has long been plagued by a burdensome and outdated tourism policy, which included a provision requiring most travelers to secure a letter of invitation to get a visa. That's changing in 2018. Under Shavkat Mirziyoyev, the country's new president, foreigners will be able to secure a 72-hour transit visa without jumping through hoops, while travelers from a handful of Asian countries will be able to visit without a visa for up to 30 days. – Daniel, Popupla editor
Studio Tack, the NYC-based firm who designed Coachman Hotel in Lake Tahoe, is behind another beautifully refurbished California motel. The Sandman, a throwback motor lodge in Santa Rosa, is full of fun and quirky touches: an outdoor pool and hot tub, a chic pool house and bar, minimalist rooms, and a retro vibe throughout. Definitely want to check this out when I'm next in California wine country. – Daniel, Popupla editor
The Most Elaborate Feast in New Orleans
It's Mardi Gras season, and I'm not in NOLA, so I'm doing the next best thing: eating King cake and restaurant. It's for a staff of nearly 100 — from busboys to owners — and it's so good that even the plumbers, wine delivery guys, and off-duty staff show up in time to sit down and chow. – Jeralyn, editorial director
If you ever find yourself in Yerevan, the capital of Armenia, find yourself some jungle bread. A specialty from the Republic of Artsakh a.k.a. the Republic of Nagarno-Karabakh (part of Azerbaijan according to the UN but controlled by Armenian separatists), jengyalov hac (jungle bread) is a thin, flat bread filled with mountain greens that's baked or pressed like a panini. Although some say it's better to eat this dish in Artsakh itself, the restaurant Jengyalov Hac in Yerevan is the next best thing. Don't forget to get an okroshka (chilled yogurt drink). It's my favorite way to have it. — Alan, Spotted by Locals
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Popupla Travel Awards: Most Romantic Hotels 2018.