THIS WEEK IN TRAVEL (ISSUE NO 23)


As seen in recent issues of This Week in Travel, cities like Croatia and Italy are deterring sightseers away from their popular destinations—see Venice ban. While they are aiming for fewer visitors, here are ten places that deserve your attention—in fact they insist travellers should come. According to National Geographic travellers willing to take a bit of risk should undergo these lesser-known spots. Spoiler, the ancient city of Urfa or Mardin in southeast of Turkey, Kyrgyzstan (as mentioned last week), Guyana and Moldova, where you can indulge in their flourishing wine trade, all made the list. Despite the violence commanding our screens, our world isn’t as dangerous as the media makes you believe. Yes, you should take precaution while travelling and do your research, but don’t miss out on the opportunity to experience and engage with cultures outside of your own.

Urfa, Turkey. Photo courtesy of National Geographic via Getty Images. 

This week was all about places not on the obvious list. Last week we were talking up Queen Victoria’s Royal Terrace (not such a secret), but one of England’s best-kept secrets, the beach in the town of Deal, has us re-thinking our travel plans. Have you not heard? Don’t worry, neither have we, which is why this seaside spot deserves some admiration. Now that the secret is out, we must go. Along the Kent coastline, Deal has been the spot to-go-to for those in the know long ago. But with a surge of artists migrating away from the more well-known, nearby town, Margate, Deal has transformed into the next seaside scene for locals or travellers. Small, but full of spirit, Deal is ideal for those intent on spending their holidays at intimate wine bars, independent galleries, and specialty vinyl and craft beer shops. Shift your eyes away from London; Deal is the place for a more small community feel.

Deal, England. Photo courtesy of Condé Nast. 

Along with Deal, there are plenty more to explore beyond London. Condé Nast gives us a list of the most picturesque small towns Brits can boast about. From a market town located on the River Wye, Bakewell, Derbyshire, to the village Burford, Oxfordshire, the United Kingdom is bursting with extensive gardens and countryside worth exploring.

Bakewell Derbyshire, England. Photo courtesy of Condé Nast. 

(On another note, Nevada a popular place for reasons not just to do with gambling —ahem weed—will may be seeing less visitors due to their lack of it. Before you go, if you are going for the obvious reasons, you should know the surplus of marijuana has dwindled due to the demand from visitors. Point blank, Nevada is running out of weed.)

More and more people are heading to Japan with a record number of visitors this past spring drawn by the popular cherry blossom season creating a buzz for foreign workers. As tourism continues to boom, Japan seeks for more foreign workers in order to fill job vacancies in hotel and hospitality sectors. And with Japan hosting the Rugby World Cup (2019) and the Olympic and Paralympic Games (2020), tourism to Japan with likely continue to grow setting Japan up as a top holiday destination.

On the subject of top destinations, UNESCO has put Vienna on the danger list. Known for its famous skyline, Vienna is under threat of losing its UNESCO status after receiving it in 2001. With a new high-rise project threatening to obstruct this prominent skyline, UNESCO is insisting the projected plans to build luxury high-rise apartments (among other buildings) in 2019 be scaled back. If the city can’t prove their plans will not impact the value of their site to the World Heritage Council, Vienna may lose their UNESCO classification.

Vienna, Austria. Photo courtesy of Lonely Planet. Image by Christian Thur

In happier news, Airbnb launches 'Refugee-Friendly Open Homes' program in Italy. Launching in Milan, over 100 Italians have thus far open their doors to those misplaced. Through its 'Disaster Response Programme’, Airbnb helps support volunteer hosts to open their homes to refugees and those misplaced from tragedies without charge. In Milan, their efforts have been focused on an overflow of migrants. Currently in partnership with five other countries (Canada, U.S., France, Italy and Greece), Airbnb hopes to expand its program soon. Well done, Airbnb!

Environmental initiatives taken by China (see Liuzhou's "forest city") have been making headlines and with a greater need for a green future it’s not a surprise other countries are jumping on board as well. Spain’s coastline is heavily developed the cause of tourists’ booms. With another uproar in property development, environmentalists look to protect unspoiled areas of the Spanish coastline. The environmental organization, Greenpeace, fear that these 53 current unharmed areas could be under threat to future development and is calling for action to protect these zones. Their aim is to get the coastal areas reclassified as protected areas under Spanish law by the European Union’s Natura 2000, therefore enforcing stricter environmental safeguards.

Cadiz in Spain, one unharmed area under threat. Photo courtesy Lonely Planet. Image: Manuel Breva Colmeiro

Going forward, if we would like to be able to have the opportunity to explore more of the unknown, there will need to be more initiatives like Greenpeace who are willing to fight for a cause and protect these untouched lands. And for now we must enjoy the earth we were given unscathed and free from greed.  

Did you get around to trying our recommendation of sisig last week (courtesy of Mr. Bourdain) No? That’s perfectly all right. In the spirit of Tokyo—one of our favourite cities—, and somewhat on the subject from this week’s issue, we re-watched the mouth-watering mastery of “Jiro Dream’s of Sushi”. A documentary about the worlds greatest sushi chef and his 10-seat only, $280 a head, 3 time Michelin Star sushi spot located in a Tokyo subway station gave us one heck of a hankering. If you haven’t, check it out! But be warned while you watch you will channel your in Nevada taste buds and most certainly will find yourself trolling for some simple, authentic and damn delicious local grub.

Happy Travels!

The Kosan Team