Intelligent Travel

About Intelligent Travel

Cultural, Authentic & Sustainable: This is your brain on travel. We showcase the essence of place, what's unique and original, and what locals cherish most about where they live. And we highlight places, practices, and people that are on the front lines of sustainable travel--travel that preserves places' essential uniqueness for future generations.

Our mission is rooted in what the National Geographic Society stands for: inspiring people to care about the planet. Traveler and Intelligent Travel also want you to experience and enjoy the planet. We want to help you journey with greater sensitivity to the impact your trip has on a place and its inhabitants.

Sometimes we celebrate, sometimes we criticize. But we always try to heighten awareness about what's really important about travel: finding great places, experiencing them fully, and leaving them no worse for your visit.

Email: intelligenttravel at ngs dot org

Lima is in full throttle. Lunch rolls seamlessly into dinner. 
Dancing keeps going long after last call. Across the more than a thousand-square-mile sprawl of Peru’s capital, from the working-class Chorrillos barrio to highbrow San Isidro and along the glorious Pacific coastline, pure urban exhilaration reigns, and just about all of the 8.8 million inhabitants are caught up in it.

The Glacier Skywalk is officially open for business, debuting an awe-inspiring vantage of Jasper National Park in Alberta, Canada, while replacing a once dangerous pullout along the Icefields Parkway. Acrophobics need not apply.

#NGTRadar: Travel Lately

The Radar–the best of the travel blogosphere–is a regular feature on Intelligent Travel every other Wednesday. Follow us on Twitter @NatGeoTravel and tag your favorite travel stories #NGTRadar to help us find the crème de la crème on the Web. Here are our latest picks.

If you like Paris in the springtime, you’ll love Provence in the summer. The region’s famous lavender fields burst into full flower at the end of June and last until the beginning of August in a good year. Don’t miss your chance to see–and smell–the fragrant herbs up close and personal this year. Here are three great places to stay while you’re there.

Riverboats, wrought iron balconies, Creole culture, a famous jazz fest, and flamboyance in the face of hardship. Where else could this describe but … Saint-Louis, Senegal?

“A river changes people, even if they’re not looking to change,” says Bill “Bronco” Bruchak. He should know, having guided on rivers since 1978, including 80 commercial trips down the Middle Fork of the Salmon River through the protected Frank Church–River of No Return Wilderness, in central Idaho. “White water makes you let go of…

Tell your kids you’re visiting where the real Pocahontas was married, and motor through ten miles of woodlands along Colonial Parkway from Williamsburg to Jamestown, the first permanent English settlement in the Colonies, dating to 1607. After the buzz of Colonial Williamsburg, this quietly purposeful archaeological site on the James River seems Zen-like. Take a…

There are some amazing events on tap all over the world, all the time. Here’s a taste of what you can see and do in June.

Looking for an escape from the turmoil of urban existence? Many waterfront cities have island havens where nature beckons, just a quick step across a bridge or a short ferry ride away. Here are ten worth seeing.

This year’s National Geographic Traveler Photo Contest is winding down. So far, the entries have been surprising and stunning, but the winners are far from being chosen.

The June 30 deadline is fast approaching, but there’s still time to throw your hat in the ring. Here’s how to enter–and what you could win.

As 20th-century jobs shifted from farms to factories in the American South, barbecue pit masters moved to cities like Memphis, Tennessee, where they worked more quickly, smoking smaller cuts of meat in handmade oil drum grills and brick barbecue pits. In the process, says Lolis Elie, author of SMOKESTACK LIGHTNING, “the styles of barbecue now associated with Memphis emerged: shoulder sandwiches and rib racks.” Here are the best places to grab a taste.

#NGTRadar: Travel Lately

The Radar–the best of the travel blogosphere–is a regular feature on Intelligent Travel every other Wednesday. Follow us on Twitter @NatGeoTravel and tag your favorite travel stories #NGTRadar to help us find the crème de la crème on the Web. Here are our latest picks.

America’s national parks are blessed with opportunities for unparalleled biking. Trips that can cross the Continental Divide, circle the rim of an ancient volcano, or follow the path of an historic canal. Here are seven national parks that offer world-class scenic cycling routes.

Weimar’s size has always belied its moxie. When a fire ravaged the gilt-trimmed Duchess Anna Amalia Library in 2004, locals formed a human chain to save historic masterpieces that included Martin Luther’s 1534 Bible. 
A decade later, the book restorations are finally nearing completion and have ignited renewed interest in this German town of around 65,000 people that’s no stranger to attention.

#NGTRadar: Travel Lately

The Radar–the best of the travel blogosphere–is a regular feature on Intelligent Travel every other Wednesday. Follow us on Twitter @NatGeoTravel and tag your favorite travel stories #NGTRadar to help us find the crème de la crème on the Web. Here are our latest picks.

Two hundred years ago, British statesman Stamford Raffles rediscovered the sprawling temple of Borobudur on a remote hilltop in Java, Indonesia, hidden under a tangle of thick jungle. Today the shrine endures as a symbol of quiet resilience—the world’s largest Buddhist temple, located in a country with a Muslim majority.

There are some amazing events on tap all over the world, all the time. Here’s a taste of what you can see and do in May.

If you approach America’s national parks like a nature photographer, not only will you get memorable images, but also you’ll experience the parks at their inspiring best. Here’s how.

In a nod to the renaissance transforming South Africa, 
Cape Town has been crowned the World Design Capital of 2014. The art scene here particularly flourishes in the neighborhood of Woodstock, a historically industrial quarter along a shabby stretch of the city’s eastern fringes.

#NGTRadar: Travel Lately

The Radar–the best of the travel blogosphere–is a regular feature on Intelligent Travel every other Wednesday. Follow us on Twitter @NatGeoTravel and tag your favorite travel stories #NGTRadar to help us find the crème de la crème on the Web. Here are our latest picks.

Washington, D.C.’s famous cherry trees are in full bloom, and Nat Geo Travel took you there in real time with Dan Westergren, the head of photography for Traveler magazine, leading the way. During the Google Hangout On Air, Dan went down to one of the District’s most photogenic spots–the Tidal Basin–to capture this world-class capital city in…

Ohio’s city of seven hills is on the way up. New riverfront parks and neighborhood comebacks are revitalizing Cincinnati’s urban core—a mix of industrial grit and Victorian ornamentation that wags call “sauerbraten Gothic.”

Ever dreamed of having the ear of National Geographic Traveler’s editor in chief? Here’s your chance. Keith Bellows will be the featured guest on a live Twitter chat next Tuesday, April 8th at 12:30 p.m. ET, so start thinking of what you might want to ask him.

#NGTRadar: Travel Lately

The Radar–the best of the travel blogosphere–is a regular feature on Intelligent Travel every other Wednesday. Follow us on Twitter @NatGeoTravel and tag your favorite travel stories #NGTRadar to help us find the crème de la crème on the Web. Here are our latest picks.

Tucked into the peaks of Toubkal National Park, named for North Africa’s highest summit, a crop of modern guesthouses has transformed Imlil, Morocco–once known as a no-frills base camp–into a comfortable retreat for day hikers.