It is no secret to those who have watch a news broadcast or read a newspaper that Somalia has been rife to turmoil and upheaval since seemingly forever. And there are reminders of the troubled past everywhere. But what the sensationalism does not prepare you for is the peace and stability (relatively speaking) of the self-declared independent region of Somaliland. Here, there are no bombings. There are no kidnappings. Just normal everyday folks going about their daily business. And it's capital, Hargeisa, is a laid-back, easy-going town. For the traveller, there aren't any real "sights" of note. But what you get is a genuine welcome. Locals don't see you as a tourist or an invader, but as a visiting friend. The honest nature makes a stay here shockingly easy. One of the last places like it on Earth.