Destination: Rome

Eight Great Travel Stories About Food

Eight Great Travel Stories About Food iStockphoto

To mark World Hum's eighth anniversary, we've collected eight favorite stories from our archives that explore the sweet spot where taste meets travel

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Where Will Dan Brown Go Next?

Where Will Dan Brown Go Next? Publicity still from "Angels and Demons" (via IGN)
Publicity still from “Angels and Demons” (via IGN)

Looks like the bestselling author has been keeping busy. While we’ve been pondering the “Angels and Demons” boycotts and bus tours, Brown has been hard at work on his next novel—and now, his publisher has finally announced its impending release.

“The Lost Symbol” will hit stores in September with a staggering first print run of 5 million copies, the largest in Random House history. Naturally, Columbia Pictures—the studio behind the first two Brown adaptations—wasted no time snapping up the film rights.

But with all the excitement, I’m left wondering: what, exactly, are we waiting for? Where will Robert Langdon (and the resulting hordes of movie tourists) go next?

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Five Hostels I Have Loved

Five Hostels I Have Loved Photo of Lizard Point by Eva Holland
Photo of Lizard Point by Eva Holland

These days, there are more accommodation options than ever for the budget traveler: everything from house swaps to pod hotels to rock-bottom recession-era deals at more traditional travel digs.

But even with that abundance of choices—most of which I’ve sampled, and enjoyed—I think my shoestringer’s heart will always belong to the youth hostel. I love the hosteling community, I (sometimes) love the fiesta atmosphere, and—of course—I love the price. From grungy party pads to serene dorm-room retreats, here are five hostels I have loved:

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Is an ‘Angels and Demons’ Boycott in the Works?

Is an ‘Angels and Demons’ Boycott in the Works? Publicity still from "Angels and Demons" (via IGN)
Publicity still from “Angels and Demons” (via IGN)

Get the Big Picture blogger Colin Boyd rounds up rumors from Reuters and Italy’s La Stampa newspaper about a possible Vatican-backed boycott of the upcoming Dan Brown adaptation. The movie—which has already spawned the inevitable bus tours—hits theaters in May, and Boyd is doubtful that a boycott would have much impact (or at least, not the sort of impact the Vatican is hoping for) on its potential success. He writes: “Perhaps there is no better, more effective form of advertising and buzz-building than a good ol’ fashioned protest. I can’t think of any product or service, actor or athlete who became less well known following a public ignoring session.”


The Forbidden Kebab in Tuscany

The Forbidden Kebab in Tuscany photo by espresso marco via flickr (Creative Commons)
photo by espresso marco via flickr (Creative Commons)

I once interviewed a chef whose Michelin-starred restaurant is tucked in the hills of eastern Lazio; when I asked what he thought of fusion cuisine, he said—without blinking an eye—that he liked it: using tomatoes from the Campagna region and basil from Genoa was great, he remarked. My question had broader ingredients in mind, but I got the point. Lucca, a walled medieval town in the northeastern part of Tuscany, made headlines a few months ago when the right-wing-leaning city banned ethnic foods from its historical center. The city claims it has since received mountains of letters from around the world supporting the ban.

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Best Cities to Drink Coffee

coffee cafe REUTERS

Terry Ward takes a look at seven of the best cities in the world to sit and sip

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Morning Links: War Hotels, the Solas Awards and More

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Rome: All the ‘Angels and Demons’ You Can Handle

Rome: All the ‘Angels and Demons’ You Can Handle Photo by Ed Yourdon via Flickr (Creative Commons)

As we’ve noted before, expectations (and concerns) are high for Dan Brown-related tourism in Rome as the release of the big-screen adaptation of “Angels and Demons” draws nearer.

The movie isn’t due out until May, but that hasn’t stopped Roman tour operators from getting an early start. In fact, as Jessica Spiegel points out in a post at WhyGoItaly, “Angels and Demons” themed tours have been popular with visitors to Rome ever since the Dan Brown phenomenon really took off a few years back. She’s got the details on six different tours on offer in the Eternal City (Six! And people say nobody reads anymore), along with a stern warning to anyone who might be planning to bring a chisel along for the ride. For those so inclined, the movie trailer is after the jump.

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Morning Links: Weird Hotels, Flight 1549: The Game and More

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Italian vs. I-talian vs. New Yorkese

Missy Robbins, the new chef at the posh New York City eatery A Voce, was relatively unknown to the New York City fooderati. That is, until Barack Obama came along. Robbins was the chef at Chicago’s Spiaggia restaurant. Like A Voce, Spiaggia serves up lauded Italian cuisine in a chic setting. And Obama was a regular, thanks, apparently, to Chef Robbins’ wood-fired scallops, among other menu items. With the circus surrounding the Inauguration, I decided to dine at A Voce a few days ago, hoping I’d get a chance to taste what kept Obama coming back to Spiaggia again and again (he was just there last month, in fact).

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‘The Terminal’: Limbo I Can Relate To

airport Photo by Matt Biddulph via Flickr (Creative Commons)
Photo by Matt Biddulph via Flickr (Creative Commons)

This weekend, on a long distance bus ride, I found myself watching The Terminal. (You know, the one where Tom Hanks lives in JFK for a year and makes out with Catherine Zeta-Jones?) Under ordinary circumstances, I probably would have found it sweet, if fairly forgettable—but on the bus, with snowy, nondescript Western New York sliding by, I was surprised by the way the film’s themes, about waiting and limbo, grabbed me. Airport terminals have a static in-between-ness all their own, but long bus and train rides—despite, obviously, keeping travelers in motion—can have that same quality of suspended animation, too. Being in a strange place, surrounded by strange people, dozing and eating in semi-public, I felt much less like someone watching Hanks’ character from the outside, and more like a colleague—or, well, like a fellow-traveler.

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Morning Links: Glum Gladiators, ‘Nutters and Nudies’ and More

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Morning Links: Roman Gladiators, Michelin Guides, Prehistoric Airports and More


Morning Links: Taj to Reopen, ‘The Pervert’s Grand Tour’ and More


How to Cross the Street in Rome

rome street Photo by stanrandom via Flickr, (Creative Commons).

Walking across a busy street in Italy's capital is no easy feat. It's an art, and as David Farley explains, you need some serious sprezzatura.

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