by Jim Benning | 05.13.09 | 2:33 PM ET
Jim Benning asks the Europe travel guru about his new book -- and where Americans can go for a politically eye-opening experience
by Terry Ward | 04.07.09 | 12:04 PM ET
The language of love may be universal, but the etiquette of dating is not. Terry Ward looks at courting from Tehran to Tokyo.
by Michael Yessis | 03.13.09 | 8:06 AM ET
- Australia floats a plan to offer tourists free flights to the country, provided they spend a certain amount of money while visiting. (via Jaunted)
- IgoUgo lists 10 places to go to drink iconic drinks.
- Out: Sears Tower. In: Willis Tower.
- Airport living: A Finnish woman apparently spent more than two months calling Berlin’s Tegel airport home. (via Gridskipper)
- Japan unveils its “Ambassadors of Cute.” Metro has a photo.
- Kenya slashes visa fees to encourage more travelers to visit.
- The latest Washington Post Time Zones piece: Eating in Tehran with Thomas Erdbrink.
- The White House clarified President Obama’s position on travel: Travel on federal bailout money bad. A strong travel industry good.
- Finally, in the Onion TV listings: Crash Cab. Description: “In this hit game show, unsuspecting taxi passengers must answer general knowledge trivia questions correctly to prevent their cab from careening into the nearest storefront or bridge abutment.” (via @Marilyn_Res)
by Jim Benning | 03.06.09 | 11:03 AM ET
- Gotta love diplomatic pressure: Iranian officials say they’re going to free American freelance journalist and NPR contributor Roxana Saberi.
- Slate’s Jack Shaffer visits Africa a few times a week—thanks to the New York Times’ man in East Africa.
- Paris celebrates the art of the void at the Pompidou Centre.
- The Telegraph has put together a fine list of the 20 best travel books, including some fiction. Your assignment: Compare and contrast with our list of the best 30.
- Busted: Catalonia’s tourism officials, who used a photo of an Australian beach to represent Spain’s Costa Brava.
- Rio’s favelas + Hollywood film crews = Favellywood? One neighborhood where crews can “shoot without getting shot.” Ugh.
- Is San Diego the new super-yacht capital? I’m hanging with the wrong crowd.
- And finally, from the Travel Channel home offices in Chevy Chase, Maryland: Do you have the travel bug? Pay a visit to the Travel Bug Treatment Center. I was diagnosed a “Trailblazer.” What form does your bug take?
by Frank Bures | 01.30.09 | 10:28 AM ET
Frank Bures asks him about the classic journey from Istanbul's pudding shop to Kathmandu
by Michael Yessis | 01.08.09 | 9:29 AM ET
- Video: Slate interviews “an Algerian man who just walked alone across the United States with nothing but $217 and a backpack.”
- Some “serious soul-searching in French tourism circles” helped inspire the country’s new rebranding campaign.
- Mapped: 50 United States and their Mottos. Intelligent Travel talks to the map’s creator, Emily Wick.
- Rick Steves in Iran: The preview.
- Cheap flights abound for the New Year, but, by historical standards, they’re not as cheap as you might think.
- Peter Hessler takes a road trip to the Tibetan Plateau. (It’s only an abstract, unless you’re a New Yorker subscriber.)
- USA Today looks at Twitter and travel.
- Want more Twitter in your life? Maybe attend a Twestival.
- Cunard reveals its 2009 Queen Mary 2 voyages with “literary luminaries” on board. Among the writers on the transatlantic crossings: Kathryn Harrison and Oscar Hijuelos. It is my duty to tell you that if you’re interested in going, you should first read this (pdf).
by Michael Yessis | 11.12.08 | 10:49 AM ET
USA Today’s Laura Bly reports that American travelers to the “Axis of Evil” nation find themselves greeted with two “constants”: “‘Welcome to Iran!’ and smiles as wide as a cloudless desert sky.” She offers some evidence in a terrific slideshow.
by Eva Holland | 10.06.08 | 12:00 PM ET
Brittany Shahmehri takes a compelling look back at her childhood summers in Iran and Texas. “I was only 3 when my American mother and Iranian father gathered our few possessions and booked a one-way flight to Texas,” she writes in the Christian Science Monitor. “But once there, we continued to eat Persian food, with steaming saffron rice and fenugreek-laced stews, and, when we could find it, pomegranate.”
by Jim Benning | 07.22.08 | 11:10 AM ET
Or something like that. World Hum contributor Jeff Biggers argues in The Huffington Post that “now is the time for universities, schools and literary organizations—and publishers—across the country to begin the process of breaking the ice in people-to-people diplomacy and cultural exchange” with Iran. American readers, he writes, should pick up some good Iranian literature this summer, starting with Strange Times, My Dear: The PEN Anthology of Contemporary Iranian Literature.
Related on World Hum:
* Rick Steves on his Iran Trip
by Jim Benning | 06.19.08 | 1:00 PM ET
He’s back from his trip to shoot a show that will air in January—we noted it here—and he recently spoke about it on public radio’s The World. Interesting interview. Warning: This web page plays the audio automatically.
Related on World Hum:
* Q&A with Rick Steves: Reflections on Three Decades of World Travel
by Julia Ross | 06.18.08 | 10:07 AM ET
Fancy a retreat at North Korea’s Mount Kumgang Zen monastery? A leisurely tour of the ruins at Persepolis (pictured)? Dream on. Foreign Policy has a tongue-in-cheek look at five alluring destinations off-limits to Americans.
by Elyse Franko | 06.17.08 | 4:47 PM ET
Lonely Planet founder Tony Wheeler says Iran, North Korea and other countries that appear on government travel advisories are worth the almost-guaranteed hassles. “There are plenty of reasons they’re worth the extra effort, and, furthermore, they’re generally far less risky than the rumors, horror stories, and ‘don’t go there’ warnings would have us believe,” he writes in GOOD Magazine’s travel issue.
by Michael Yessis | 05.30.08 | 2:09 PM ET
Chris who? You probably know his syrupy song “The Lady in Red.” (Video below.) It was huge in the mid-‘80s. Turns out the British singer is still huge in Iran, where, for almost three decades, most Western music has been forbidden by the ruling Shiite Muslim clergy. De Burgh’s songs circulated on illegally copied tapes there, and he became rock-star popular. So much so that, in an apparent lifting of the Western music ban, de Burgh recently became the first Western pop musician to visit Iran since the 1979 revolution.
by Jim Benning | 05.21.08 | 1:52 PM ET
He’s there to produce a TV show about travel in the country—and he’s on something of a mission. As he explained on the blog a couple of days ago:
by Jim Benning | 05.06.08 | 4:37 PM ET
Interesting bit in a Guardian story about train travel in Iran: “Scheduled for completion later this year is a line that will run from Kerman in the south-east to Quetta across the Pakistani border. When finished, it will present a mouth-watering prospect: uninterrupted rail travel from Europe to the subcontinent.”