Andrew Evans

I have never received as many concerned messages as I did on a recent trip to Egypt. The nation has made headlines lately, and few have been positive. Realities on the ground in Luxor, though, were different.

Like Mexican cooking, which mixes 
the flavors of limes and chilies, Yucatán’s civilization is a blend of contrasting cultures: Maya and Catholic. Nowhere is the mix more evident than in the golden city of Izamal, in Yucatán’s north.

The homemade pierogi are spot-on and the borscht is rich with dill, just like in Ukraine. But the old country is thousands of miles away; I’m on a patch of Canadian prairie in Alberta, site of the biggest Ukrainian settlement outside of eastern Europe.

In 1953 Edmund Hillary summited Everest with Sherpa Tenzing Norgay. Helping keep Hillary warm at the subzero altitude was a sweater made from Shetland wool. The artisanal tradition, which continues to this day in the Shetland Islands, remains one of Scotland’s most recognizable trademarks.

Adventures in Swiss Cheese

Comments Off

“A pro can sniff out at least 45 distinct aromas,” says Dominique Yersin, a Swiss cheesemaker who resembles a champion wrestler in an apron, as he holds a ripened hunk of his L’Etivaz cheese to my nose.

Andrew’s 10 Durban Must-Dos

Africa never leaves you. Once you’ve smelled the air, laid footprints in the red dirt, and caught a flaming hot pink sunrise you just want to go back and do it all over again.

Though my job affords me some terrific travel opportunities, Durban — a city smiling and alive with people, color, and bright lights — occupies a special place in my memory. Even though I could rave about it all day, these stood out as must-dos if you’re thinking about planning your own South African adventure.

Geo Bee

Twenty-two years later, and it still makes me nervous. Just watching the young contestants at yesterday’s preliminary finals of the National Geographic Bee was enough to make me sweat and tighten my hands into fists—to hope and to cringe with every question asked. Back in 1989, I participated in the first ever National Geographic Bee.…

Where’s Andrew? Mustering Brumbies

“Is that photographer fella come yet?”/ “No.”/ “Do you know where he is?”/ “I think he’s coming tomorrow.”/”The American bloke?”/ “I dunno.”/ “Is the journalist guy with you?” Before I met any of the folks at Kings Creek, I listened to them all discuss my visit on the scratchy radio. On an outback station as…

Happy Australia Day to all of you! After traveling for more than seven weeks in Australia, I feel like I have a much better sense of this remarkable country and its people. Still, that didn’t prepare me for the jubilant celebrations that mark Australia Day. As a national holiday, Australia Day commemorates the landing of…

Visiting a world famous icon always carries high expectations with specific ideas about the experience, while true travel always offers an extra element of surprise. Australia’s Uluru surprised me with its colors, lightning storms, and zebra finches. Thanks again to the Anangu for welcoming me to the sacred sites of Uluru and Kata-Tjuta.

Where’s Andrew? Way Out Woop Woop

Comments Off

Most of Australia is gloriously empty. Perhaps that’s why I love it so much here. Don’t get me wrong. I’m not one of those country people who generally despises or mistrusts the big city. I love a nice, overwhelming metropolis–plant me in midtown Manhattan and I’m a joyful man–but I equally love the existential rush…

“Thank You” will take you pretty much anywhere in the world. Not just because your mother told you so. It’s a basic travel rule and it really works. I’ve never really counted, but I’m sure that I’ve uttered “thank you” in at least 50 different languages around the world. I’ve since forgotten how to say…

Just like Texas, everything in Australia is bigger. So far on my travels through Oz, I’ve seen giant waves, giant kangaroos, giant trucks, giant floods, and one giant cow. Best of all, I got to visit one giant reef–the largest coral reef in the world. The Great Barrier Reef is both physically and mentally monumental:…

Some of you have asked me about the sharks in Australia–what they like to eat, for instance. Well, as far as I can tell, sharks like cold barbecue chicken. I’m not a marine biologist or a shark expert. I am a swimmer and diver who gets to see sharks now and again. All I can…

Postcards are a big fat lie. Pulled from our daily mailbox, postcards promise a turquoise dream of tropical beaches and heart-stirring, Photoshopped skies. We tack them to our fridge, then leave them up there for months, reminding ourselves at random moments that there is a faraway place that is much more beautiful than here and…

Where’s Andrew? The Bay of Fires

The best mode of travel is on foot. This is no secret. Good travelers go walking wherever they can, be it Manhattan or the Mojave desert. I know that I always see so much more walking–you feel the land underfoot and sense every new thing, and more importantly, you have the time to think about…

Where’s Andrew? Starstruck in Sydney

Celebrity run-ins are as much a part of travel as lost luggage and passport stamps. Perhaps we never expect the stars to cross our paths, but when they do, it offers us a never-fail travel story. I know, because once I saw Princess Di in London, another time my dad jogged past Robert Redford, and…

Comments Off

My first week in Australia has been busy, busy. Trying to throw all of you off my trail had me bouncing from Melbourne out to the historic Goldfields, up to the stunning high country of the Victorian Alps and then back to the stormy southern coast. I am still quite amazed by the diversity of…

Where’s Andrew? Music in Melbourne

I traveled to Australia because it’s what I know least. It’s the farthest place from home and literally the opposite end of my world. Where better to begin my digital wanderings than in a huge, almost-empty continent on the flip side of the globe? (It also helps that it’s summer down here.) I flew to…

Where’s Andrew? Balloon Boy

Just one day after planting my feet on the great Australian continent, I took off again. Flying in a hot air balloon was something that I’d always wanted to try. It also proved a nice introduction to the city of Melbourne. Some of the first modern cartographers used hot air balloons to make their maps…

Video: Where’s Andrew? Flying to OZ

Comments Off

Wow, you’re all so smart! After I was airborne for more than 16 hours, you deduced that I was headed down under. Good on ya but just know that from now on, the game only gets harder. Congrats to @USElaine @falisha and @abaesel2 for correctly guessing Melbourne as my first port of call. (Incidentally, on…

Where’s Andrew? Basic Instructions

Last month we introduced you to Where’s Andrew?, my next adventure for National Geographic Traveler. As I get ready to leave next week, I thought I would fill you in on the basics of how my trip will work: One new photo clue and caption will be posted every weekday (Monday-Friday) on the  National Geographic…

The Cutest Kingdom in Canada

Comments Off

Intelligent Travel contributing writer Andrew Evans sends along this post about one of the plus beaux villages in Quebec. Canada’s different. I keep on remembering that every time I go back, and then I slowly forget it until the next time. It’s not the language or the money or the license plates. It’s just this feeling…

Digital Nomad Andrew Evans sends along this interview with his 97-year-old grandfather who vividly recalls his first transatlantic flight in 1949. Not to boast, but in the last year I’ve crossed the Atlantic twelve times. In fact, I’ve done the 8-hour trip so many times, it’s become rather routine: I doze during taxi and take-off, read until…

Penguin Places

IT Contributor Andrew Evans offers an all-inclusive guide to all things penguin. Penguins are never passé. Be they marching or tapping their happy feet toward another sequel, the little black and white birds are still very much in everybody’s minds and hearts. I also imagine that kids who play with plastic penguins in their Happy…