Credit: Richard Phibbs

Let’s just call it my sponge theory: Most committed travelers I know want to take it all in—the atmosphere, the experiences, the people, the events. In my case, this always involves a bit of athleticism, dashing from one spot to the next so as not to miss anything at that particular moment, in that particular season, in that particular place. There is always a lot on my plate. As an example, take what I already know about my itinerary for a five-day trip to London in early November: Tate Modern, V&A (see our NewsFlash Culture Special); the Wolseley and Bentley’s for lunch (I always go); the Royal Academy of Arts; dinner with friends at Scott’s, the River Café, and/or Zuma or Hakkasan; theater, undecided; shopping, undecided, though definitely Boots for drugstore essentials and Grays market on Davies Street for antique baubles, whether to swoon or buy (my husband and I will be celebrating an anniversary, after all). It’s a lot to do when you’re also working, but well worth the effort if, like me, you dance to the beat of style and culture—not coincidentally, the theme of our October issue.

What I’m talking about is something I believe to be the very essence of travel—the pleasure of engagement, whether with a previously unknown destination, from El Calafate in Argentina to Langkawi in Malaysia; the coastal Indian oasis of Goa; or the gleaming new W South Beach. What I’m talking about is dropping in on the constantly evolving art and design scene, restaurant scene, shops, and personalities in Downtown New York and making the most of the opportunities laid out in T+L’s fall lineup of exhibitions, films, and performances. You’ll find all of this, plus a driving trip from Venice to Asolo on the trail of 20th-century architect Carlo Scarpa; a very insider Paris shopping tour; and, to ensure you have something to bring home with you, a tutorial by T+L photo editors on how to take better pictures on your next trip, with smart advice on the best new cameras.

So if you’re thinking that you just don’t want to be bothered—that like everyone else you have important things on your mind these days and style and culture don’t seem, well, quite so urgent—please reconsider. It’s a great way to soak it all up.

Where to Find Me

Twitter: @nnovogro