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Inside the Pope’s Vatican

For one week this September, Pope Francis will trade umbrella pines and St. Peter’s Basilica for New York skyscrapers and D.C.’s Capitol dome. But though Catholics look forward to his trip to the U.S., a Roman holiday to the Vatican remains the best way to get close to the pope.

Reader Recs: Long Weekend Getaways

It can be difficult to find time for a long trip, but that shouldn’t keep you from exploring the world. Take a break from reality (and an excuse to use up one of those vacation days) with a three-day getaway. Here are a few suggestions from our Nat Geo Travel Facebook fans to inspire your weekend wanderlust.

I Heart My City: Angela’s Rome

Originally from the island of Sardinia, freelance travel writer Angela Corrias has traveled the globe, living as an expat and racking up nomad cred. Two years ago, she decided to stop roving and put down roots in Rome. The Eternal City continues to earn its moniker with its “never-fading allure,” she says. “Few places make whirling back in time so easy.” Here are a few of her favorite things about Rome.

I Heart My City (in the Spring)

From music festivals to flower shows, beaches to wineries, here are 20 ways to make the most of the next few months in 20 cities around the globe.

#StrangePlanet: Travel Trivia

Truth is stranger than fiction. Here are five travel factoids to help prove it: Bogged down: Every August, competitors in the World Bog Snorkeling Championship flipper their way to glory in a water-filled trench cut into a peat bog outside the tiny Welsh town of Llanwrtyd Wells.   Still around: Chugging along since 1835, the St. Charles…

Travel Lens: Steve McCurry’s World

A National Geographic Traveler editor goes behind the lens with photo legend Steve McCurry.

At Home in Rome: Where to Stay

The Roman Empire may have fallen off the map centuries ago, but to a modern traveler, the center of Italy’s capital city may feel just as vast. While walkable, distances between monuments within Rome’s historic core can be a haul—made worse if the tiny, twisty streets turn your sense of direction to mush. The city…

#NGTRadar: Travel Lately

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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.

The Best Gelato in Rome

On warm evenings, Rome’s locals stroll the cobblestoned streets, cones and cups in hand. About 2,000 gelaterias exist in Rome. Most use additives, thickeners, and synthetic flavors–yes, even those that call themselves artigianale (artisanal). Here’s where to get the good stuff.

Meet the Editor: Isabella Brega

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Isabella Brega, the executive editor of Traveler’s Italian partner magazine, put together a buyer’s guide to authentic goods in Italy, highlighting 20 places in five different cities where you can witness craftsmanship in its highest form–from marionettes to mandolins. “The story of Italian artisans is one of valuables and values,” she writes. Here’s a brief look at Touring’s creative maven and her singular view of the world.

I Heart My City (And So Should You)

It’s a new year and, with it, new trips to plan. As you mull over which places you’d like to tick off your travel bucket list in 2014, consider these brief but compelling reasons why you should visit 20 of the world’s cities from the people who know and love them best.

Travels on the Run: Heart of Rome

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For Nat Geo Travel 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.