Auschwitz: Looking Away is Not an Option

"Work sets you free." Just how inhumane would you have to be to think up a sign such as this?

“Work sets you free.” Just how inhumane would you have to be to think up a sign such as this?

Many people have written the horrifying story of Auschwitz, so I’m not going to rehash it here.

Squinting at Beer Through a Cigarette Haze

Old Town views across the Vltava River...

Old Town views across the Vltava River…

Prague is one of Europe’s most recognizable cities. It’s long been a favourite of backpackers for its low costs and cheap beer. And it’s firmly on every European tour itinerary thanks to its beautifully preserved UNESCO listed old town.

The Austrian National Library, Vienna

If there's a heaven for me, it would look like this library...

If there’s a heaven for me, it would look like this library…

I believe that a library is a sacred space, and a visit to a library is a form of pilgrimage.

London Calling

A lovely day for a walk down Regent Street...

A lovely day for a walk down Regent Street…

It’s been a while since I’ve posted a new blog. But I haven’t forgotten about you…

Rest assured that I’ve been hard at work on a new book and new articles. And I’m busy wading through stacks of reading and marking up maps as I plan several cool new trips for 2016.

I Accidentally Rented a Fruit Plantation

I had no idea it was going to be this big...

I had no idea it was going to be this big…

I knew this place was over the top when Tomoko made the Japanese sound for astonishment: a long, drawn out, “Ehhhhhhhh?”

We’d just pulled up to the gate of the villa I had rented, and we were looking down the palm-lined path that led to the house.

Where the Heck Are the Åland Islands?

The Åland archipelago truly is a magical place...

The Åland archipelago truly is a magical place…

It’s governed by Finland but its people speak Swedish.

It has its own flag, stamps, and parliament, and special trading arrangements with the E.U.

And it’s halfway between Finland and Sweden, smack in the middle of where the Baltic meets the Gulf of Bothnia. But it isn’t really a part of either country.

Don’t Forget to Remember

The war graves section of the Pershore cemetery — 41 of these men were Canadians

The war graves section of the Pershore cemetery — 41 of these men were Canadians

Yesterday was Remembrance Day — November 11th, the day we pause to think about all those who lost their lives in the two World Wars, and in Korea and all the conflicts that have happened since.

Hanging Out at Hamlet’s House

Kronborg Castle in Helsingor, immortalized by Shakespeare as the fictional setting of Hamlet...

Kronborg Castle in Helsingor, immortalized by Shakespeare as the fictional setting of Hamlet…

Okay, I wasn’t really hanging out at Hamlet’s house. And I didn’t find myself talking to skulls in any graveyards, either.

Copenhagen — The End of the Line

Making myself at home in the throne room...

Making myself at home in the throne room…

The next stop on our long northern journey took us to a rather strange island shrouded in history, mystery and avant garde film…

Is There One “Perfect Place” For Everyone?

Searching for my personal landscape...

Searching for my personal landscape…

I’ve dedicated the past decade and a half of my life to traveling the world’s marginal places.

I started off exploring forgotten regions, like Central America’s Mosquito Coast or the Mongolian Gobi. But I’ve also conducted a very long inquiry into expat life.