Beyond the Guidebook – Mini-Blogs – Intelligent Travel

River Cruising With Kids: Three Reasons to Go

A river ship doesn’t have the climbing walls, play zones, or indoor skydiving activities that filigree ocean-going ships. Which isn’t surprising given that the median age on a river cruise ship is 55. So what was a nine-year-old doing sailing the Rhine one recent spring afternoon? Playing shuffleboard on the sun deck. And having a great time.

Just Back: Isle of Man

Nat Geo travel books editor Larry Porges crossed a destination off his bucket list this summer when he traveled to the Isle of Man, located smack-dab between the islands of Ireland and Great Britain in the middle of the Irish Sea. The co-author of the “London Book of Lists” has had a long fascination with the self-governing British Crown dependency and its Celtic, English, and Viking roots. Here’s why.

The Local Beat in Buenos Aires

Argentina’s debonair capital hums round the clock, from morning coffee to late night tango. Here’s an inside look at what to do, eat, and buy in the city.

Travels on the Run: Marseille

For National Geographic Books Senior Editor Barbara A. Noe, going on a run is the best way to get oriented in a new city, and a great way to take in the sights. So lace up your sneaks and read on to get Barbara’s tips on where to run in some of the world’s greatest places—and what to see along the way.

American Glamping: Three Great Finds

Lodge in nature without sacrificing comfort. > Treehouse Point B&B (Fall City, Washington) Backdrop: The western foothills of the Cascade Mountains, beside the Raging River. Best for: Couples seeking lofty hideaways and Wi-Fi–free nights. Creature comforts: Six hand-built wooden tree houses with quilt-covered beds, large windows, and porches; breakfast of eggs, homemade granola, breads, and fresh…

I Heart My City: Peggy’s Virginia Beach

Virginia Beach native Peggy Sijswerda can remember when her hometown was a sleepy little city covered in cornfields. Today, acting as editor and publisher of two regional magazines keeps Peggy more than busy, but she still makes time to enjoy all this coastal gem has to offer—”amazing history, beaches, boating, swimming, and seriously tasty seafood” chief among them. Here are a few of her favorite things about the city she’s proud to call home.

The Movie Geek’s Guide to Wellington

The landscapes of New Zealand’s North Island hold cinematic cachet. “The Piano” starred a black-sand surf beach in Auckland’s Waitakere Ranges; Kiwi Andrew Adamson transformed nearby Woodhill Forest into a witch’s camp in “The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe;” and Hollywood tapped Mount Taranaki in “The Last Samurai.” But when time is limited, Wellington provides ample sites, lore, and glimpses behind the scenes of a robust local film industry. Here’s a brief guide to the hot spots movie nerds should hit in the Kiwi capital.

Just Back: Santiago, Chile

National Geographic Traveler associate editor Susan O’Keefe always thought of Santiago, Chile, as a prelude to skiing in the Andes or hiking through Patagonia. But on a recent trip she was taken in by the city’s grand colonial architecture, wide boulevards, and charming neighborhoods. Here are some of the high points of Susan’s trip, in her own words.

@NatGeoTravel Staff Picks: Summer Festivals

In the mood to celebrate among the masses? There’s nothing quite like an outdoor festival to make the summer season seem official. Here are a few of the @NatGeoTravel team’s favorite open-air festivals to inspire your next trip.

World Calendar: Must-Attend July Events

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 July.

Big Cities, Great Escapes

When it’s just too darn hot, these are the go-to getaways for city dwellers around the world.

I Heart My City: Erin’s Madrid

Madrid “feels like the Spanish best friend you never had—one that welcomes you with open arms, tasty tapas and drinks, and good times,” says local Erin Ridley. “Really, it’s hard not to feel like you belong here.” Here are a few of Erin’s favorite things about the city she’s proudly called home for seven years.