I think I can say with confidence that if an executive editor of Travel + Leisure or Afar tried to put this month’s batch of Perceptive Travel stories on the cover of their magazine, said editor would soon be looking for a new job.
We don’t like to play it safe though, so we’re going with our odd batch of travel tales from places that won’t make the trend-chasing travelers sit up and take notice.
Well, we do have Brazil in there, which is getting tons of press in 2014, but there will not be any World Cup matches where this article takes place. Volker Poelzl and his girlfriend take off on a canoe to paddle down a remote section of the Amazon River where there are more pink dolphins and caimans than people. See The River of Solitude in Brazil.
Judith Fein corresponds with a pen pal in Ukraine for 20 years before finally paying him a visit. She’s there to research a new book (The Spoon From Minkovitz) and dive into the origins of her mother’s home cooking in Jewish Brooklyn back in the day. See Kishka and Kasha in the Ukranian Countryside.
I think I know a lot about the world and as a kid I was fairly obsessed with all the unsolved mystery stuff that was all the rage in the 70s—from UFOs to the Loch Ness Monster. I’ve never heard of this strange Nan Madol site in Micronesia though that Brad Olsen profiles. It’s a citadel of ancient kings, built with giant basalt “logs” that can weigh a couple hundred tons, and it defies all logical explanation as to why it’s there and how it was built. See Micronesia’s Mysterious Nan Madol.
Graham Reid cranks up some new world music albums, including the new Rough Guides collection Arabic Cafe and a new one from the legendary Gipsy Kings.
Bill Caverlee reviews some new and noteworthy travel books hitting the shelves, from yet another Lonely Planet coffee table book to the 80th anniversary edition of a beloved Footprint guide. See the latest travel book reviews.
We give away something cool for free each month to one of our newsletter subscribers. For February, an Australian reader named Hannah scored a free pair of new Vasque shoes. This time we’ve got a $130 daypack from Granite Gear that can work for hiking or just hauling around your stuff when you’re sightseeing. You’re on the newsletter list, right? If not, get on it quick to enter this month and every month.
I’ve saved the bragging for last, but if you’ve read this far, we’ve done very well in some award announcements lately. Perceptive Travel got a Silver for “best online travel magazine” from the North American Travel Journalists Association, as well as some individual awards. Then the Solas Awards came out and we took home even more in that one. See the home page of Perceptive Travel for more: best travel writing awards.