By the age of 11, the average
kid has learned how to climb a jungle gym. But not Richard Wiese. That was the
age when the former Explorers Club president climbed Mt. Kilimanjaro for the
first time—and he’s done it 15
more times since. The Emmy Award-winning journalist/adventurer/field scientist
has also cross-country skied to the North Pole, tagged jaguars in the Yucatan
jungles, and was a member of the largest medical expedition ever conducted on
Mt. Everest. But his latest undertaking is as the host of the aptly named Born
to Explore, a new syndicated ABC travel program that highlights cultures
from around the world, including Aboriginals in the Northern Territory of Australia, Batwa pygmies in Uganda, and Mayans
One side effect of having a partner who is training for the New York City Marathon (Go, Bob, go!) is that it has upped my own mileage as well. I tell myself, if he is out on an 18-miler, I can certainly pound out eight. This increase in my own distance has had another unexpected and pleasant side effect: On my last trip to London, wanting to keep up my running schedule, I found myself out running around in new areas of the city I’d never seen—I was sightseeing by accident.
Stride-by-stride is such an enjoyable way to take in a new city. I suddenly wanted to run everywhere! Wouldn’t it be great to run over the Golden Gate Bridge, or through tulip fields, or by the Pyramids? During sunset on the Côte d’Azur, in cherry-blossom season in Japan, along the coast in Perth?
I was one of the lucky New Yorkers who caught a brief, colorful glimpse of Papua New Guinea recently. At an event sponsored by luxury tour operator Absolute Travel and the Papua New Guinea Tourism Promotion Authority, two tribesmen—a Wigman from the Huli tribe and a Mudman from the Asaro tribe—performed and mingled with the crowd to promote travel to PNG. The promotion worked. I want to go.
The Catskills Mountains are a perfect getaway from the hustle and bustle of New York City, and a great place to soak in the best of fall, with picturesque hiking and horseback riding trails, quirky antique shops to explore, and gourmet restaurants and markets. But if bucolic tranquility isn’t enough to get you pumped for fall, I’ve got a suggestion for all you thrill-seekers out there.
Hunter Mountain is a popular spot in the winter with skiers and snowboarders in the northeast, but it's also home to the largest Zipline course in North America, with 4.6 miles of runs at higher than 600 feet in the air. I sought out the ultimate thrill not too long ago, with New York Zipline Adventure Tours’s Skyrider course, which includes five dual runs (so you can challenge the person opposite you to a race), a 500-foot jungle bridge, and a self-powered Zipline, where "take off" means taking a running jump into thin air on a downhill slope.
Recent headlines about Mexico are more likely to involve drug cartels and killings than adventure travel and Mayan pyramids. That's why the opening interview with President Felipe Calderon in a new TV travel special is surprising: Calderon confronts the image problem head on instead of trying to divert attention with pretty images. He even lays some of the blame on Mexico's neighbor to the north. But make no mistake. "Mexico: The Royal Tour," which premieres tonight and tomorrow on PBS stations nationwide, is a love letter to Mexico, a celebration of its history and the travel adventures that await visitors.
The Bollywood blockbuster of the summer, Zindagi Na Milegi
Dobara(You Only Live Once) is a cinematic love letter to Spain, following
three buddies on an epic bachelor trip that takes them from Barcelona to
Seville and beyond. But lest you jump to the inevitable comparisons, the Indian Hangover it is not—ZNMD (as it's now called) has a lot less raunch, a lot more soul, and plenty of beautifully shot musical sequences.
For megastars Hrithik Roshan, Farhan Akhtar, and Abhay
Deol, filming was an epic adventure all its own—they spent three months on the
road and even re-created Buñol’s famed Tomatina festival (with 16 tons of tomatoes!)
and the running of the bulls, in Pamplona. Granted, these events don’t appear in
the film in chronological order, but this is Bollywood after all, so defying logic goes
with the territory—especially if it creates scenarios "ripe" for spectacular