Travel off the Beaten Path

Discovery and serenity in Cambria, CA

The Central Coast town offers a rare atmosphere of tranquility and peace.

When I think of Cambria, I often think of my Grandpa Bristol – outfitted in a pair of brown waders – prying large red abalones from tidepool rocks. The Bristol home was close to the ...

Cabo Polonio, bona fide best of Uruguay

No roads or electricity? All the more reason to visit.

There may well be other places like this, a scruffy village of dwellings on a cape which seems like it’s from another time, but I haven’t seen any. Most locations remind you of some other ...

Love for H-Town

The Big Star Bar and local craft brews overcome Houston's mosquito-revitalizing weather.

Ahh, Houston! As soon as I landed, my shirt got stuck to my body as I breathed in that humid thick air. Siri told me that my week visiting Texas for my cousin’s wedding was ...

Fascinating Kinmen, Taiwan

Cold War tunnels and traditional villages greet the curious visitor to this tiny island group.

A convenient weekend break from the noise and bustle of Taipei is a one-hour flight to the island of Kinmen. Although Kinmen is controlled by Taiwan, it lies only eight kilometers from the Chinese mainland ...

Escape to Minca, Colombia

Get a break from the heat of the north coast in this sleepy backpacker hub.

It’s not the kind of place that comes to mind when thinking about Colombia, but a little mountain village called Minca gets my vote for best of honors. A slow 17 kilometers up and out ...

Loveland Reservoir: backcountry in San Diego's backyard

Just 45 minutes from downtown, the reservoir offers hiking, fishing and close-to-home wilderness.

Loveland Lake and Dam is a true hidden gem in the backcountry about 40 minutes drive from downtown San Diego off I-8 East. The trailhead can be easily missed if you blink once while driving ...

The Mitchell Caverns: California's sacred caves

Explore these ancient limestone caverns a 4.5-hour drive north in the Mojave.

The Mitchell Caverns are not as large as those at Carlsbad, New Mexico, or as well known — but are local, every bit as dramatic, and come complete with a history made for movies. I ...

Bulgaria? Nobody goes there!

Like many Westerners, I imagined a gritty, gray and boring post-Communist Balkans.

"Bulgaria? Nobody goes there!" said my husband when I mentioned it. Admittedly Bulgaria had never really been high on my list of places to visit, but fate brought me an opportunity to meet an old ...

What brings you to Kosovo?

The country remains untouristed, with lots to see for the intrepid traveler.

1/18 UPDATE: see this link on travel safety if visiting Kosovo. Travel to the north of the country is currently not advised, other areas are relatively safe. "What brings you to Kosovo?" In most countries, ...

South Pacific's mythic Marquesas

Journeying aboard the cargo-cruiser Aranui to far-flung isles.

The South Pacific’s remote, pristine Marquesas Islands make Hawaii look like Harlem. I can honestly say these South Seas sojourns to French Polynesia’s untrammeled atolls and isles have been the greatest excursions of my life. ...

China Lake: California's rock art library

See the largest gathering of petroglyphs in the northern hemisphere.

At night, especially under a full moon, the locals say you can hear the voices of the ancient ones. They ride the wind, telling the story of their people as they glide across the rocks. ...

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