Outside Context travel writing has been featured on some of the world’s top websites. Articles have been purchased by Airlines, featured in iPhone Apps, published as questions in degree level English examinations and comments have been posted by everyone from Lonely Planet writers to US Special Forces Lieutenant Colonels!
In the last of my series of films re-examining my output over the last 10 years, I present the definitive [...]
Writing an article about Zen is almost a contradiction in terms. That is unless I simply leave the rest of [...]
Come see the ever changing colours of Uluru in all its unbelievably rich and mesmerising splendor at sunset. Followed by the next morning as the sun rises and the colours grow as the sun bathes the rock faces in light.
The magic of the temples of Angkor are almost beyond imagination. I met many people on my travels who have [...]
After watching LOTR for the first time I started a long journey of the heart. The first steps were the [...]
Endings are actually beginnings too. This is what I told myself as I sat in the tiny, oh so tiny, [...]
I have written before about travellers wanting a point to it all, to travelling. In part this is perhaps seen [...]
4am in Tokyo, Japan trickled around and we were ready to go. We skipped breakfast and headed down to the [...]
"So," said Cesca loudly and clearly, just as I was drinking from a water bottle, "What's all this about China [...]
Everyone loves Pandas and at the Panda Conservation Centre near Chengdu, China is probably the best place to see [...]
"You have to imagine," said the man in broken English, "that this..." he gestured his hands at the view in front of us, "big lake... flood wide and deep... great water!" He broke into a wide toothy smile.
When you travel through a country, especially if you are using a published travel guide, you are walking a well trodden path. Indeed maybe a thousand people are doing it with you simultaneously. This has a very strong effect over time, as more and more guest houses start catering only to the backpacker and spring up all along the route, which had myriad knock-on effects. Such as: taxi services who know the guide books better than you do and hordes of travellers at ever corner all "experiencing" the local atmosphere; all the time failing to realise that they are in a "bubble" like a Disney theme park ride.
As a traveller you know, and even expect, the unknown to occur. You want this; for some it’s the whole point of leaving their home in the first place. It’s usually to do with the fun stuff like walking the Great Wall, eating Sushi in Tokyo Fish Market or jumping off a bridge in New Zealand with only an elastic band to prevent your death.