Archive for the ‘All About Travel’ Category

Risk, innovation and U.S. culture

The United States is renowned for having a culture that rewards risk-taking and innovation. This is so ingrained into the culture that it’s easy to forget it’s actually a somewhat unique trait that is not always so easily replicated elsewhere. Here’s a reminder of that, buried in a NY Times profile of scientist-businessman John Kao. Before long he had written […]

Biking Vietnam

It’s not a vacation for the faint of heart, given the chaotic vagaries of Vietnamese traffic, but Margo Pfeiff had an exhilarating time during a biking tour of Vietnam. She wrote about her experiences for the San Francisco Chronicle. Sucking in a deep breath, I launch myself into one of the most exhilarating and terrifying adrenaline […]

Cultural insights from Egypt

I came across some interesting cultural insights in a recent article about Egypt in the International Herald Tribune. Although the story, on its surface, is about Egyptian perceptions of the U.S., just begin reading and you’ll discover some anecdotes that shed light into Egyptian and Arab culture. My favorite, at the start of the article, describes the local […]

Improve your health, take a vacation

Americans work more hours and take fewer vacation days than pretty much anyone else in the industrialized world. Now, though, comes evidence that vacations are more than a fun perk – they may actually help you stay healthy and live longer. Here are the vacation stats: A global study by found that about a […]

Riel World photo – Nile River, Egypt


Nile River, Egypt Sunset over the Nile River near Luxor, Egypt.

Disappearing destinations

The website New West has an interview online with Heather Hansen, co-author of the new book, Disappearing Destinations, which looks at the environmental challenges that are plaguing popular tourist destinations worldwide. An excerpt from the interview: How did you come up with the idea for Disappearing Destinations? Kim and I were at a conference in […]

Riel World photo – Prague, Czech Republic


Prague, Czech Republic The architecture and flowers of Old Town Square in Prague.

Saudi gender relations: the female view

Yesterday, I had a post about gender relations in Saudi Arabia and the remarkable lengths that the society goes to in order to maintain separation between males and females of different families. I linked to a story in the International Herald Tribune in which young men were interviewed about their interactions with women. Today, we cover […]

Saudi gender relations: the male view

It’s easy in the West for us to express shock or dismay at the state of gender relations in some Arab countries (the veiling of women, the separation of the sexes, etc.), and particularly in a very conservative culture such as Saudi Arabia’s. However, it’s also easy for us to forget that many people in those […]

Travels in Ladakh


I enjoy reading the travel writings of Pico Iyer, so I was happy to find this recent article of his about a trip he took to Ladakh, a Tibetan culture in the Himalayan region of northern India. I knew before I came to Ladakh — the high, dry region in northern India that borders Tibet […]

Stunning sand dunes of Namibia

When most of us think of vast deserts and mountainous sand dunes, our mind wanders to the Arabian or Sahara deserts. Few people think of Namibia and sand dunes in the same sentence. But this country on the southwestern coast of Africa is, in fact, known for some of the most stunning sand dune landscapes […]

Images of China


National Geographic has a wonderful feature online – an interactive photo map of China. By clicking on the names of cities or regions, one is transported to a collection of photos from that part of the country. There are 200 pictures in all and they show the amazing diversity, complexity and beauty of the Chinese […]

    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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