Celebrating the best bits and bobs to be found while exploring Britain, Ireland and beyond. Much is inspired by real outings, whether they were walking, cycling or photographic in nature, while virtual blundering in the name of planning them has turned up some gems too. Regardless of how they were found, I hope that they keep coming so I can continue to share new things with you.
It is only in recent years that I began to read travel magazines as regularly as the walking magazines that have told me so much about where to walk around Britain and Ireland for more than a decade. Even with travel blogs and portals like Vacation Country Travel Guide, Two Nerds Travel, Travelade, ExploreNorth, Expert Vagabond, Beyond Our Horizons, Traveldudes, Travel Daily, The Bimblers, Geeky Explorer, Norway to Nowhere or The Quirky Traveller, there remains a place for paper magazines that you can hold in your hand. After all, there is something about stunning photography and good writing that comes together when presented on a printed page that beats anything seen on a computer screen. So, here is a list of the former that I have found so far.
Learning about destinations piecemeal is the main attraction for me in these because surveying a whole guidebook at one sitting can be just a little too much. Also, having a general awareness helps when working where to find out more while planning an actual overseas excursion. There even could some money saved as a result and I know how easily money can be spent on guidebooks and maps so anything that directs attentions more precisely has to be a good thing.
Here are a few magazines that feature a varying selection of countries in every issue and many of these are monthly too. Getting a regular dose of overseas wandering ideas can mean that you are not starting from scratch when figuring out what to see during a trip to another part of the world.
It was the combination of wonderful photography and lengthy feature articles that hooked me on this one, so much so that I became a subscriber after buying only a few issues from newsagents. Many of the features are written on the basis of package tours yet they still tell us so much about the places included in them while those with an independent travelling streak need to a little work on their own.
A cursory look at the name should bring up an association with the well known guidebook brand. Here though, things are featured in bite-sized chunks with more of a focus on independent travel. As a non-car user, I do sense that may of the itineraries are constructed with car usage in mind when other ways might be better. Maybe having features not covering as big an area and concentrating on smaller details in smaller ones would make a better mix.
This is not one of my regular reads though it is an offering from the respected geography society. Again, we are talking about a similar bite-size mix to the others with some of the trademark high standard photography for accompaniment.
Here is something from the authors of Europe by Rail, a title formerly published by Thomas Cook until the travel firm exited that business. It now has taken on another life and the magazine comes out three times a year and includes no advertising. The only way to get the latter is to buy it direct from the publishers with subscriptions also being available.
Though this American title has not appeared on any newagent's shelf that I survey, there is much useful content on its website so that is enough to get it included here. It got found via a mention in Insight's guide to Canada so curiosity got me investigating and a possible North American trip may have me perusing a copy for real.
A visit to a newsagent will reveal that certain destinations are of particular interest to readers and here are a few. What also will become clear is that they go beyond visiting somewhere to include moving there, either completely or seasonally. It is when you see property sections and details of applying for residency that causes that realisation to dawn on you.
The size of Alaska guarantees that outdoor adventures will feature in this title. That in fact is the main theme of the current issue at the time of writing. With scale of the landscape, its latitude and the creatures that live there, this is one dramatic part of the world that I have yet to visit. In the meantime, this title will give me a sense of what is to be found there and what might constitute a starting point for getting to know the place more while on an actual visit. After all, that would involve some hiking so finding more accessible trails for a first encounter sounds sensible given how isolated some localities are.
The antipodes continue the sunny theme, especially Australia. Still, it is New Zealand that I find more attractive with its appealing mountain country and compact size. Both places remain desirable for anyone wishing to embark on a new life and the magazine does not miss out on that either.
It is one of Britain's nearest overseas neighbours and, for all the historical animosities, there remains a connection between the both countries. That I myself learned French at school and spent a number of weeks around St. Malo with the aim of expanding my competence with the language means that it does not feel that unknown a place to me. Still, my interest veers away from valley laden with viticulture to those with mountain country.
Italy is another of those destinations that must attract British attention and I wonder if it is all the sunshine its delightful parts get. Of course, there is a lot to see too from alpine mountains in the north to sun-blessed coastline and both Italian food and culture too are world renowned.