Category: Historical travel

Fighting Ethnocentrism by Going to Europe: Travel as a Political Act with Rick Steves

The name Rick Steves has become synonymous with savvy, frugal, no-nonsense travel. He’s established a veritable European travel empire, including dozens of guidebooks, tours, apps, travel products and even the beloved PBS series, complete with its own theme song. But in the case of Rick Steves, “empire” isn’t really the right word, not with his emphasis on meaningful cultural exchange and the publication of his award-winning manifesto, Travel as a Political Act. In a …

National Museum of African American History and Culture

Hamilton tickets have become one of the most coveted cultural commodities of our day, but a timed pass to the Smithsonian’s new National Museum of African American History and Culture (NMAAHC) comes in a close second. This is in part because the museum, which opened on September 24, 2016, has fallen victim to its own success.

The average “dwell time” for most museums, which describes the length of an average visit, ranges from 75 minutes …

Ocean Friendly Whale Watching

Whales are one of the Earth’s largest mammals, the beauty of which is best seen in the open waters of the ocean. There are numerous destinations around the world where you can observe these gentle creatures swim, thrash, and play in the water. All that is needed is a quiet boat or even a motor-less sailboat to venture out to sea to experience whale watching at its best. And, with a little patience and understanding, …

Offbeat Venice

If you come away from Venice thinking, “It’s too crowded and it smells,” you’re doing it wrong. Sure, the labyrinthine city’s glory days are long gone, and many of the palazzos along the Grand Canal have been converted to restaurants or left to rot, their first floors already reclaimed by the sea, but the city is more than just a shadow of its former self. There’s a reason, after all, that the tourists still flock …

9 Reasons to Head to Memphis

Nashville may have been getting all the attention with a television show, but it’s not the only place you want to go to for the history of southern music and family fun. Memphis offers a look into the birthplace of the Blues, civil rights, and major attractions.

Allow a full day to explore Graceland.

1. Graceland
You don’t have to be an expert on Memphis to know that Graceland is the top attraction in this …

An Island on the Rise

The stilt fishermen of Sri Lanka

For years the little island of Sri Lanka has been a place that lots of people wanted to visit but very few actually did.

A devastating civil war was followed by the brutal 2004 tsunami. Now the country is rising above its past to become a holiday hotspot, with its exotic beauty, fabulous food and its intriguing yet traumatic history. Sri Lanka is like India for sissies, with spectacular …

Following the Sound of Music in Austria

It’s been over 50 years since The Sound of Music was released (1965). Everyone remembers Julie Andrews singing “The Hills Are Alive,” but not many know the Alps behind her are. They are in Austria, along with the rest of locations used for the movie. It was the home for the real von Trapp Family and it’s possible to relive one of the world’s favorite family films during a tour in that European country.

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The Fabled Colonial Key West

Key West Aerial View by Andy Newman/Florida Keys News Bureau

Key West is described as the southernmost city giving visitors a taste of the Caribbean without even leaving the US. The tourist board even states Key West is a “unique tropical island city.” However it is defined, Key West is alluring, entertaining and peaceful all at the same time with sightseeing tours conducted on conch trains down roads lined with Colonial houses.

Chugging Train, Key…

George Washington’s Mount Vernon

There they are, on full display in front of you: George Washington’s legendary false teeth, looking more like Johnny Rotten’s. The uppers aren’t that worse for wear, but the lowers have gaps that one could drive a truck through. But they are not made of wood as many believe. The first president’s choppers were crafted from the combination of elephant ivory, human teeth, and cow teeth.

Inside Donald W. Reynolds Museum and Education Center: dentures…

Romantic Winter Destinations USA

Sleigh Ride courtesy the US Fish and Wildlife Service Headquarters

There’s something about snow that inspires us to escape with that special someone to a peaceful and quiet hideaway from the crowds and hustle and bustle of life. Thankfully, there are places with elegant mountain cabins, tranquil rivers and sleigh rides through frozen landscapes.

 

Estes Park Mountain and Inn by Brylie Oxley

Estes Park, Colorado

Nestled on the edge of the Rocky Mountain National Park

10 Reasons to Visit Tel Aviv

The view of the beach from the Dan Hotel Tel Aviv.

The Israeli city of Tel Aviv may not be on your vacation list, but it should be. In addition to a history that dates back thousands of years, the city will surprise you with plenty to do, see, and eat.

1. Beaches
Tel Aviv borders the Mediterranean Sea for a stretch of nine miles. The beaches are clean and have plenty of soft sand …

A Pilgrimage to Bob Dylan’s Minnesota

Hull-Rust open mine pit where young Bob used to ride his bike with his friends.
© Michael Schuman

How does it feel?

A little breezy, actually. Standing on a modest hilltop overlooking the Hull-Rust open pit iron mine, where Bob Dylan, then Bob Zimmerman, used to ride his bicycle with his friends, it is easy to see how his youth in Hibbing, Minnesota influenced Dylan’s work. This endless iron mine pit is the largest in …

Frank Lloyd Wright’s Falling Water

A shaded forest with dappled sunlight dancing between the trees; a clear stream that cascades over a severe, silver rock face; a certain hush, save the occasional bird and the crunching of leaves underfoot, and there, in the middle of it, a house like a no other, rising from a waterfall.

Exterior view of Fallingwater from www.fallingwater.org

There’s a reason why Frank Lloyd Wright remains one of America’s most beloved architects. Falling Water, the stunning …

20 Years After Terror Attack, Oklahoma City Museum Undergoes Expansion

A lot has happened since the pictures of devastation from the usually quiet municipality of Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, USA made headlines 20 years ago. Heart-wrenching images of a bombed office building and broken bodies, the kind we are used to seeing from the Middle East and not the American Midwest, were on television screens and in newspapers in parts of the world that never knew Oklahoma City existed. The date was April 19, 1995. The time …