Let's turn up our noses right here at the inevitable "desperation," "naked corruption" and "open sewer" jokes. We take the sweet smells that remind us of our travels seriously. Starting with the ubiquitous temple incense in Myanmar and other Southeast Asian countries.
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Italy = Espresso —
Thought we were gonna say pizza? Good choice, but can't you practically smell the bitter goodness of espresso in an Italian cafe from here?
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Japan = Tatami —
If you've been to Japan, you know exactly what this room smells like. Pure elegance.
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North America = Forests —
In certain woodlands of North America, like California's Prairie Creek Redwoods State Park, some insist they could be dropped in blindfolded and still know where they are by the distinctive smells.
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Germany = Beer and sausage —
We couldn't decide which smell most took us back to Bavaria, sausage or freshly tapped beer. So we went with both.
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India = Spices —
In the olfactory safari that is India, spices at places such as New Delhi's Khari Baoli, the largest spice market in Asia, demand to be remembered.
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Caribbean = The beach —
You don't need to be a "Seinfeld" fan to understand the heady aroma of "the beach." If only we could bottle this stuff! This beach in St. Martin on the Island of Guadeloupe stands in well for the entire Caribbean.
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France = Fresh baguettes —
The aroma of freshly baked bread brings France to life each morning. Good for when you've had your nose in too much red the night before.
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Indonesia = Kretek cigs —
Love it or not, the pungent smoke from clove cigarettes (kretek) is inescapable -- and unforgettable -- throughout Indonesia.
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Safari countries = Wildlife —
Something smell gamey around here? The aromas of an African safari might not always be pleasant, but when wild animals come near, they can be profound.
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China = Blazing woks —
In China's street stalls, spices such as flower pepper and aniseed mix with sizzling grease to produce a scent that travelers and homesick natives will recall from thousands of miles away.
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Belgium = Chocolate —
The Belgium Chocolate Village (pictured) in Brussels easily passes the sniff test.
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England = Pub fug —
There's nothing like the fug of a warm English pub, preferably with a dog and fire in the mix. The Old Spot Inn in Dursley (pictured) is a 100-year-old pub with a keen nose for tradition.
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Mexico = Warm tortillas —
Fresh off the comal (that's the metal hotplate for cooking), warm tortillas smell like home for Mexicans, heaven for visitors.
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Philippines = Coconuts —
The Philippines is the world's largest producer of coconuts, so when you're in country you're never far from the olfactory excitement of a freshly cut one.