Back in 2010, Houston-born schoolteacher Lynda Martinez traded the Gulf of Mexico for the Persian Gulf—with two sons in tow—when her husband was offered a job in Dubai. Though her “heart is still in Texas,” Lynda has grown fond of her current home base and shares the love on her blog, Longhorns and Camels. Here’s a look at Dubai through her unique lens.

As the 150th anniversary of the Civil War draws to a close, head to these mid-Atlantic sites. They played a pivotal role in America’s deadliest conflict.

In his new National Geographic book, Traveler magazine editor at large Christopher Elliott outlines how to be the world’s smartest traveler. Here’s Elliott’s take on the myriad ways to reserve a room.

We can thank President Theodore Roosevelt for establishing what became the nation’s first national wildlife refuge—Florida’s Pelican Island—in 1903. Today, more than 560 refuges throw a lifeline to some of America’s most vulnerable species, and to the millions of visitors who spend time there drinking in the great outdoors. Here are six national wildlife refuges that provide idyllic alternatives to urban life.

It’s the last night of my tenth trip to Hawaii. This time I’ve come to visit my daughter, Jenny, who is planning to move back to California this month after living on Oahu for more than two years. My wife, son, and I have gathered for one final family fling. And we’ve had a wonderful…

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 April.

Anne Elder “fell in love with France somewhere between Madeline and Moulin Rouge.” After studying abroad in Paris, the life-long Francophile migrated south and found a home in Aix-en-Provence, France. When she’s not helping students learn English as a teaching assistant, Anne spends her time keeping her blog up to date, working on the perfect bœuf bourguignon, or trying to blend in with…

Travel Lately—a roundup of the best new dispatches from the travel blogosphere—is a regular feature on Intelligent Travel every other Wednesday. You can play, too. Follow us on Twitter @NatGeoTravel and tag your favorite travel stories #NGTRadar to help us find the crème de la crème on the Web.

Ireland’s pub culture is often imitated, but rarely duplicated. Here are four taprooms across the United States that come close to being spot-on, where you can enjoy a pint (or more) along with some neighborhood bluster and brogue.

Kerry is the most westerly county in Ireland, with Brooklyn, New York, jokingly referred to as “the neighboring parish.” But its people don’t think of it as remote. For them, the rest of the world is to be pitied for being remote from Kerry. Here’s a brief primer on one of Ireland’s most idyllic counties.

National Geographic Traveler editor at large Christopher Elliott is the magazine’s consumer advocate and ombudsman. Over the past 15 years he has helped countless readers fix their trips. Here’s his latest advice.

Pa Teuruaa was born on Rarotonga, the largest and most populous island in the sprawling South Pacific archipelago known as the Cook Islands. Despite spending time in (relatively) nearby New Zealand, he couldn’t resist the pull of his ancestral home. Upon his return, Pa parlayed his twin passions for the island’s rugged interior and the healing power of plants into a career as a guide, leading his first nature trek in 1985. Here’s a look at the jewel of “the Cooks” through Pa’s unique lens.

Itching to get out and about after a long winter? Join @NatGeoTravel for our next Twitter chat on Thursday, March 19, from 1 to 2 p.m. EDT to get the scoop on the best places to visit this spring.

Nat Geo Travel just unveiled its list of this season’s best trips, so we asked our Nat Geo Travel Facebook fans to share spring break escapes that go beyond the warm-weather clichés. Here’s what they had to say.

Diana Orduna began her love affair with Geneva—a place she describes as “a huge melting pot of cultures, people, and international organizations”—three years ago. Soon after relocating from Mexico to the capital of Switzerland’s Romandy, or French-speaking, region, she started sharing her discoveries with the world on Spotted by Locals and on her own blog, LivinGeneva. Here are a few of Diana’s favorite things about her hometown of choice.

Culture vultures know how to holiday. They aim for creative clusters—innovative centers abuzz with imaginative activity—and let loose. While some clusters occur organically, art-smart urban planners have turned the creation of cultural spaces into an art form all its own. Here are a few newly opened and about-to-open art hubs that are putting imagination, art, and history on the world stage.

More than anywhere else I have been, Seville resists change. From its passion for bullfights to its fondness for the pageantry of the Catholic religion, the capital of Andalusia always has reveled in its traditional way of life. Here’s a primer on making the most of your time in this stunning city.

The Texas capital’s many music clubs host live performances every night of the year—and multiple times an evening during March’s annual SXSW festival. But Austin’s HOPE Outdoor Gallery showcases a very different creative output: artists legally spray-painting on a three-story abandoned construction site.

While strife-weary Middle Eastern grandes dames Beirut, Cairo, and Tehran have all seen better days, Sharjah—glitzy Dubai’s demure neighbor in the United Arab Emirates—is a cultural doyenne with a vision.

Travel Lately—a roundup of the best new dispatches from the travel blogosphere—is a regular feature on Intelligent Travel every other Wednesday. You can play, too. Follow us on Twitter @NatGeoTravel and tag your favorite travel stories #NGTRadar to help us find the crème de la crème on the Web.

In 2013, Trevor Huxham left Texas for Santiago de Compostela and never looked back. Now an English teacher at a bilingual school, Trevor spends his extracurricular time cataloguing the many pleasures of Santiago de Compostela on his blog, A Texan in Spain. “Not only is Santiago the endpoint of the historic and modern Camino phenomenon, but it is also a lively university town with great seafood and beautiful granite architecture,” he writes. Here are some of Trevor’s favorite things about the World Heritage-listed city he calls home.

In 1911, skiers first completed the Haute Route: a six-day, 46-mile traverse through the skyscraping peaks between Chamonix, France, and Zermatt, Switzerland. Since then, the Haute Route has become a rite of passage for adventurous skiers.

For more than a quarter of a century I’ve traveled Ireland’s western coast, up from the filigreed fringe of west Cork, along the lakes of Killarney, to the world-class golf links of Ballybunion and Lahinch, to Yeats country in Sligo, meeting people who give me yet another reason to come back.

Some years ago Alexander McCall Smith started to write a serial novel, “44 Scotland Street,” set in Edinburgh. “In this series—now in its ninth volume—I wanted to explain why it was that this city should so beguile those who come to know it, why each morning makes me feel as if I am waking up to a continuing love affair with the place in which I live.”

Avid traveler and Venezuelan national Andreina Pantin moved to Panama in 2009, and has been exploring the ins and outs of its capital city ever since. Adreina believes that “to love a place, it is important to know it, its people, and its culture,” and practices what she preaches by blogging about her ongoing discoveries in and around Panama City. Here are a few of her favorite things about the cultural crossroads she calls home.