Category Archives: Cultural Curiosities

Alaska’s Iditarod: “The Last Great Race”

The Iditarod is one of the most epic dogsledding races in the world, but outside of Alaska, few even know what it is. How long is it? Why is it known as "the last great race"? And do they really race with dogs? As a man who has mushed a few teams myself, I like to start with a brief history, dispel some common misconceptions, and then relate some of my favorite facts about the race.
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Scotland : Land of Music, Myth and Whisky

This is the post I’ve been needing to write for roughly a decade. Why? Because, as a former Glasgow bartender, I’ve spent most of my working life writing lists of “cool Scottish stuff” on napkins for passing tourists. I couldn’t be more excited to give you some bona fide inside knowledge that will bring your Caledonian adventure to life!
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Ljubljana: Europe’s Hidden Gem

Towering mountains and Bled Castle overshadow a passing Pletna, north of Ljubljana Half the size of Switzerland, yet brimming with attractions - from Venetian coastal resorts in the south to the majestic Julian Alps and emerald-green lakes in the northwest - Slovenia is a hidden jewel still buried in misunderstanding. Locals still contend with Westerners…
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The Mysteries of Machu Picchu

It's hard to deny that Machu Picchu is a truly grand feat of engineering, but why was such an impressive structure abandoned? War? Disease? Divine intervention? It remains a mystery - here are the five most likely theories.
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What Is A Yeti?

In 1921, British explorer and politician Charles Howard-Bury spotted massive footprints while on an expedition to Mount Everest. His Sherpa guide informed him that they must be those of the “metoh-kangmi,” the rough English translation being, “man-bear snowman.” From this, the world first heard of the abominable snowman, or yeti, one of the most persistent and widely known legends of our time. But where did this folklore originate before being introduced to the West? And why does it persist today among the people who call the mighty Himalayas home?
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Walking the Camino de Santiago

To truly understand the significance of the Camino, you have to travel at least a part of it yourself. I did and what I discovered is that at the heart of this storied path of quaint villages, picturesque landscapes and historical relics lies a deep spiritual journey – one that began with Roman-era Christians but now includes people from many different walks of life.
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Sailing Through History Along Croatia’s Dalmatian Coast

Floating atop the crystal clear waters of the Adriatic Sea, a 110-year-old wooden masterpiece named Bozidar, meaning “God’s gift,” awaits our arrival. As we finish our hike through charming coastal villages, centuries-old olive groves and secluded bays, the rocky trail conveniently ends at a small dock where Bozidar’s dingy picks us up to whisk us out to our group’s private boat for the week.
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Switzerland’s Hidden Secrets

My Backroads guests and I have just piled into the Sunnbüel cable car and we're ready to ascend over 3,800 feet to begin our hike across the Gimme Pass. It's day two of our Switzerland Walking & Hiking Trip and I'm about to tell my guests something that I know nobody will believe.
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Glaciers – Where to See Them Before They’re Gone

Glaciers, massive conglomerations of ice, snow and rock, are among the world's greatest wonders. But they're also slowly disappearing. These natural phenomena, which have come and gone throughout Earth's long geological history, appear to be in the process of documenting another chapter in our planet's story. But while most glaciers are receding at an alarming rate, certain destinations still provide an abundance waiting to be appreciated. What many don't realize is that many of Earth's most beautiful places, while devoid of glaciers today, were actually sculpted and created by these fascinating features and are home to unforgettable scenery.
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