Megan Heltzel

of National Geographic Travel

More than five years ago, Enric Sala left a tenured position at prestigious Scripps Institution of Oceanography and showed up at Nat Geo’s doorstep to outline his vision for protecting the last wild places in the ocean. Today, with support from the Society, the audacious marine ecologist remains the driving force behind the Pristine Seas Project, an epic effort to establish marine reserves–underwater national parks–around the world. I recently got the chance to chat with Sala about his hometown in Catalonia, his favorite place to scuba dive, and more. Here’s what he had to say.

The beauty of America’s 59 national parks, from the crystal clear waters of Glacier to the sharp silhouette of the Grand Tetons, is something you should experience firsthand–and this is the perfect time to do it. Why? It’s National Park Week. To pay homage to the amazing natural splendor of America’s best idea, we asked our Facebook community to share their favorite national park with us–and what makes it so special. Here’s what they had to say.

I don’t know about you, but for me, indulging in authentic, local cuisine while traveling—and finding the most authentic establishment to patronize—is a must. With warm-weather wanderlust upon us, we asked our Facebook fans to give us the inside scoop on their city’s signature dish, and where to go if you want to try it for yourself. Here’s what they had to say.

With spring travel just around the corner, we asked our Facebook fans to share the best travel advice they’ve ever received. Their responses ranged from practical tips to inspirational musings.

This month National Geographic Traveler announced 2014′s must-see places in the annual Best of the World feature. From Argentina to Oz, the final lineup reflects what’s authentic, culturally rich, and sustainably minded. Discover what makes these destinations worthy of a visit—and how they ended up on the list.