Archive for the ‘News of Note – Travel’ Category

Does language shape culture?

Tower of Babel

Does language shape culture? It’s an interesting question. Even more interesting, though, is the answer. Yes. Apparently, language not only expresses our views, but also helps to shape our very thoughts.

Creativity and education across cultures

students working together on a project

In previous posts about education across cultures, it’s been noted that one of the traditional strengths of the American system is that it promotes creativity and individual initiative. What is interesting now, though, is that other countries are trying to replicate this U.S. model at the very time that Americans are going in the opposite direction.

Great train journeys

Great train journeys

Train journeys are one of the great ways to travel. National Geographic Traveler recently published lists of their favorite train journeys in Europe and North America, and there are some wonderful selections to consider for your next adventure.

Driving through Namibia

Namib Desert

Although Namibia is not a country that gets a lot of tourist press, it’s one of the more developed countries in Africa in terms of infrastructure and it not only has tribal cultures and wildlife sightings for tourists, but also coastal towns, desert landscapes and some of the most stunning sand dunes in the world. Barney Lyons just wrote an article for BootsnAll about a driving tour of Namibia.

Three months in India for a family of four

Taj Mahal

India for three months: with two young sons, aged eight and six. Are you up for it? Michael Booth and his wife were. And, in an enlightening article for the London Times, he explained how this trip was a life-changing adventure for his family.

Chinese education, American education

chinese school

There are many differences in the educational systems of various countries. One of the largest gaps is between the Western and Asian styles of teaching and learning. Those differences were on display again in a recent story about Chinese guest teachers in the United States.

What are the world’s most beautiful drives?

amalfi coast

There is no shortage of contenders in this category, as there are countless jaw-droppingly beautiful drives in the world. But the website GotSaga recently took a shot at coming up with a list of some of the world’s most beautiful roads.

Unlearning conformity in Egypt


It’s common throughout the Middle East, Asia, and some other regions of the world for a culture to value conformity over individualism, and memorization over creativity in education. This topic is covered in a recent article I came across, which discusses how the educational style at the American University in Cairo differs significantly from the typical Egyptian classroom.

How geography can become destiny

The geography of Greece.

How much influence does geography have on a nation’s culture? Quite a bit, actually, and not only for the reasons you might initially consider…While pivoting off the current Greek debt crisis, he suggests that Greece’s geography has, in many ways, determined its destiny.

If you like architecture, here are some cities for you


Architecture is fascinating, particularly as you make your way around the world and take in the shapes, colors and functions of buildings in different cultures. A great thing to remember as you travel, in fact, is to look up periodically and to absorb the details of the buildings around you. The architecture of our lives […]

Transformational trips

You have the time. You have the money. And you want to do something different: take a trip that will transform your life. Or at least give you the sense that you’ve had a life-changing adventure. Travel & Leisure and MSNBC recently published a story about what they called midlife crisis trips, but the journeys […]

Dreams of Cascadia

Ever heard of Cascadia? Or Ecotopia? This is the geographical and cultural region – both real and mythical at the same time, it seems – that stretches from the Pacific Northwest up through British Columbia and includes such cities as Seattle, Portland and Vancouver. The NY Times recently published a story on the region. And, […]

    Meet Bob Riel

    Bob Riel is a writer and a traveler. Go here to read more about Bob, his work and the Travels in the Riel World blog.

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