Nathan Bransford, Author


Thursday, October 20, 2011

Where Is Your Favorite Place You Have Traveled?


There's something about traveling that unlocks the brain. It gets you out of your routine, it shows you a different way of life, the jet lag puts you in a creative fog.

Mark Twain said, “Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry, and narrow-mindedness.”

St. Augustine sad, "The world is a book and those who do not travel read only one page."

I'm traveling now, so posts will be a bit more sporadic than usual, and perhaps arriving at odd hours. But I want to hear what travel means to you - do you like to travel? Are all writers wanderers by nature?

And where is your favorite place?






151 comments:

magarentse said...

Scotland, truly magical.... And yes, travel is essential for a writer.

Rosasharn said...

Cuba. Craziest place on earth.

The Red Angel said...

I have to say that visiting Germany was my all-time favorite trip. My family and I went to Berlin quite a few years ago and I still have not forgotten what it was like. We visited several historical sites (Berlin Wall, museums), and real German cuisine is fantastic. Berlin is an urban center, but from what I experienced it's also rather serene, a quiet city. I loved it and I definitely want to go back some day.

Honorable Mentions (haha): Britain and Hawaii!

~TRA

http://xtheredangelx.blogspot.com

Bookish said...

By far, Bath, England has to be my favorite. As an Anglophite, I devour english literature almost daily, and relished seeing the corner of the world which was the scene of many of Jane Austen's novels. The gentle rain, the lush green landscape, the crescent on the hill, and the famed hot springs and pump room made me feel at the time, and still today, as if I were in a dream.

Dorothy L. Abrams said...

Traveling to the UK unlocked my novel set in Cumbria and the Lake District. I actually found the places I had imagined in the book. Very magical. We are off again to England and Scotland next spring.

In the States, we are going to the Boston area and Sturbridge sometime soon. We have family and genealogy to do, but there are stories to find as well.

Karen Stivali said...

I traveled a ton when I was younger, not as much since I've had kids. I still love exploring new places. Favorite US city: NY. Favorite European cities Oxford and Florence. Favorite beaches: Rhode Island coast.
The thing I've always liked most about travel is that you get to experience a glimpse into the lifestyles of the people who live in that place all the time. I love finding places that the locals frequent rather than doing the standard touristy things.

Sierra McConnell said...

I haven't traveled much, money and all, but I would love to go to the places I've written about and read about. Odd places like Hiram, Georgia\Maine\Ohio, Straubing Germany, and perhaps even Kittery, Maine.

I like Maine most. XD

Josin L. McQuein said...

I've traveled very little, but not for lack of desire. I *want* to go just about everywhere in the world, but if we're going on places I've actually seen, then I'll say Orlando Florida.

Pathetic, I know. :-(

AlvaradoFrazier said...

The quotes you mentioned are posted on my bulletin board beside a small color map.
Venice is one of my favorites, because of the feeling the canals and buildings evoke both during the day and evening, there is an eerie serenity about the place.
Paris is a close second because of the parks, bridges,architecture and food. Travel provides more than just a new locale for a writer.

Eden Bradley-Eve Berlin said...

Scotland was magical. I loved that as I'd walk down the street in Edinburgh passing modern buildings, I'd suddenly come upon a church or some other structure that was 800 years old. And the people were so lovely-every cab driver and waitress was ready to take us home and feed us.
St. Andrew's was beautiful, especially the rugged coastline, the long expanse of sandy beach. It was November and freezing, but I'd go back any time.
Travel is absolutely essential for a writer. It opens the world to us in a way that just doesn't happen by Googling a place (which I've also done, when necessary). But only experiencing a place can give you the true flavor.

sue laybourn said...

the Hunza Valley in Pakistan. Sadly off-limits these days (probably) but very beautiful.

Quinn said...

Iceland. I only got to see a little bit of the country around Reykjavik, but the alien beauty of the landscape was like nothing I'd ever seen, and I almost got lost in a canyon full of volcanic ash, which makes for a good story.

Also, the BEST HOT DOGS IN THE WORLD. No joke.

David Gillaspie said...

Spain did it for me, national afternoon shutdown and tappas gave it a universal happy hour feel.

P.I. Barrington said...

Britain. Probably because that was the first major out of country place I visited. Of course that I am an Anglophile doesn't hurt either. It was stunning to the point of beyond tears of disbelief!
All writers must needs be travelers...they cannot take their readers on journeys otherwise!

Kate Larkindale said...

Berlin. It's the perfect mixture of chaos and organization, bustling and vibrant in one moment, tranquil and gorgeous in another.

NYC is a close second though....

Kathryn said...

Rome. The sunshine is golden unlike anywhere you've ever see the sun.

Susan Antony said...

I agree with Kathryn. Rome the Eternal City.

Matthew MacNish said...

When I was young I moved to a new city every six months. I'd loved to wander. Now that I'm a parent, traveling is prohibitively expensive, because obviously four tickets cost more than one.

That being said, I've still never left the continent. I intend to spend my retirement seeing the world, if I can afford it.

Deb said...

That's like asking which child is my favorite. Impossible to answer. Each place is so different and so magical in its own way. Venice, Jerusalem, the Dingle Peninsula, Barcelona, Banff, Tuscon, Maui ... it's not even comparing apples to oranges. It's comparing falafel to croissants.

Roger Floyd said...

Anywhere in New Mexico.

Tasha Seegmiller said...

San Juan Islands, WA. Amazing and serene. I wish I could go back just to sit, take it all in, and write.

Ms. Blasé said...

Even though I've been to Europe and Latin America, my favorite destination is still Tulsa, Oklahoma.

CourtLoveLeigh said...

What?! Nobody has said France yet? I did a study abroad in Lyon once and got to live with a host family. It was my first big adventure alone with no family and no friends. So I guess it's always gonna have that special place. Of course, there are many wonderful places left to visit! I will never get to all of them in one life (also, I like that Scotland seems so popular).

Heidi Windmiller said...

Norway. I've never been anywhere as spectacularly beautiful as the fjords. Very literally breath-taking.

Other Lisa said...

In my case I don't think you need to ask...

I mean, about the travel part -- I love travel, and it's essential to my work.

China's on my list, not too surprisingly, in part because the place has been such a large part of my life and a key to my own self-understanding. Places in China: Yangshuo, Guizhou, Xinjiang and even old Beijing.

But I really love traveling anywhere. I still judge natural wonders on the Big Sur scale, which is just a drive up the coast for me. I visited St. Louis MO for the first time last month, and I loved it. I think sometimes it's just about getting out of your comfort zone and seeing something new.

Have fun!!!

abc said...

I'm on board with travel. But I have to say I'm pretty picky. I'm not that person that wants to climb mountains and sleep under the stars and try exotic foods. I love to see culture and beauty and all that, but I like boutique hotels and hot showers and clean toilets. Maybe prissy is the right word. Though you'd never know by looking at me.

I love Dublin the most out of all the places I've been to. For the vibe and the people. For the history. And the beer.

Jen McConnel said...

Egypt is by far the most amazing place I've ever been. The sand pulses with magic, and the people there are the friendliest folk I've met. It's funny, I traveled to Egypt after I began writing a book set there, and I found that I had made up all the details really well...but I never predicted how much the trip would mean to me, nor how much I want to go back.

Heather said...

Paris. Watching the people stroll by the cafes, feeding sparrows outside the Louvre, walking along the Seine. It's the most peaceful place I've ever been, considering I was in a big city. The architecture just takes your breath away.

And yes, I believe writers are wanderers by nature. Even if we don't leave the house we travel to different worlds in our minds. Real travel just stimulates something that's already implanted in our lives.

Marta said...

So many wonderful places that it's hard to decide, but I'd have to say Istanbul. Didn't expect to like it the first time. Now it calls to me. Layers of history and culture, great views, fabulous food, pleasant people. And the contrast between east and west, old and new constantly surprises.

John said...

I enjoy traveling from my couch to the bathroom during advertisement breaks on the Travel channel.

OK, not really. I've been to Italy, Spain, and Morocco. I only go to other places so I can write a fictionalized version of my travels and sell millions of books under my pen name, John Grisham. It's really easy to do.

In fact, there aren't enough people writing about their trips to the bathroom or their lives in general! So I created a list. How to Write a Book in 10 Easy Steps. http://bit.ly/ph1T81 It's almost as easy as sitting on the couch, eating ice cream, and pretending that you're a world traveler.

Anonymous said...

I travel all the time through my imagination. But my favorite place, is the place I haven't been yet.

Lisa Shafer said...

Edinburgh, Scotland. Hands down the coolest place ever.

DearHelenHartman said...

It's not a where but a how. My favorite way to travel is to drive - to wander, to stop, to meet people, to zip off the highway and find something amazing. A car trip to anywhere is as wonderful as a magic carpet ride if you do it right.

L.G.Smith said...

I'm gearing up for a trip to England, Scotland, and Wales (setting for my WIP). Cannot wait. I've been to London before, but didn't get outside the city to explore. This time I will. I'm even daring to rent a car and tour the countryside.

Crystal said...

I'm another Scotland person. It's unreal there. The kind of unreal that could make me believe in magic.

Tracy said...

Montreal in winter. The contrast between the -28c, frozen streets and the warm underground city is incredible. It is a must for any hard-science fiction writer that wants to get a feel for inhospitable places that might one day be colonized.

Anne-Marie said...

Italy, hands down, although if I could use the other hand too it would point to Scotland.

Rick Daley said...

"There it is kids! Big Ben! Parliament!"

- Clark W. Griswold

I was in London in early September, and had a colleague take a picture of me doing a silly walk in front of Buckingham Palace. Experience of a lifetime for a Monty Python geek like me.

My favorite place internationally is probably Amsterdam. In the US, San Diego.

Least favorite: Tijuana (international, scary) and Omaha (domestic, boring).

WORD VERIFICATION: lootords. Floaters in a British restroom.

@rjdaley101071
http://mydaleyrant.blogspot.com

L. Shanna said...

Phuket, Thailand. I had no idea the ocean was that beautiful.

P.I. Barrington said...

LG!
So am I!
London is astounding but up in the border country, Scotland, the Yorkshire Dales your heart will break from the beauty of it! Not to mention the HISTORY!
I may drive too!

Sarah said...

Venice. Always Venice. I think it might be my favorite city in the world.

Dana Strange said...

It's a flat out tie for me between Phuket, Thailand and Rome. I cannot choose. Phuket for the amazing Thai people, beaches and adventures. Rome for complete awesomeness in every possible category.

chitrader said...

The Canadian Rockies. I could sit and stare at mountains for hours. And the golf is spectacular up there, too.

Carrie Filetti said...

Prague! I must find my gypsy roots. ;)

L.G.Smith said...

P.I. - I know! I'm already delirious thinking about all the history and gorgeous country I'll see. Amazing. Have a great trip!

Lauren Alissa Hunter said...

Luang Prabang, Laos.
Out of 18 countries I've backpacked, it's the only place I have done *twice*. I think travel not only cultivates an open mind for people who are different from you, but shows how similar all of us really are in our desires, struggles, dreams etc... Consequently, traveling so many places alone has forced me to endure some of the most painful and introspective loneliness I've ever felt... Which, we all know, does wonders for the "creative process."

Bryan Russell said...

The mountainous south coast of Ireland and the fjords of Norway (and the Trollstigen, of course). The pedestrian resort town of Zermatt, in Switzerland, is also pretty lovely.

Elsie Chapman said...

Tokyo!

Bryan Russell said...

And Seville and Salamanca are two of my favourite towns.

Okay, I want to travel again.

Mira said...

I'm not really a traveler; I prefer to snuggle up with the comforts of home.

Although I do enjoy luxury travel - lovely bed and breakfasts and gorgeous hotels that pamper me.

That said, I think it was crucial I left my own country and experienced a different culture from my own. It expanded my sense of what it means to be human in a major way.

My favorite places tend to be more about beauty or tranformative experience.

Yosemite is probably my favorite place in the world. The Alps were gorgeous and Switerland is pristine, but I think Yosemite is one of the most beautiful places in existence.

I also think that anyone who can should try to stand at the edge of the Grand Canyon at least once in their lifetime.

Another thing to do in one's lifetime is to stand in the presence of one of Michalangeo's sculptures.

And be inside the Notre Dame Catherdral in Paris.

There are so many other places I haven't been, so it's a short list, but that's my list so far.

Mira said...

Oh, and, it's abit embarrassing to admit, but I LOVE Las Vegas.

Disneyland for grown-ups.

ScottB said...

The hilarious thing about the Twain quote is that in his celebrated travelogue "Roughing It", he spends a whole chapter lampooning the sacred texts of the people he was staying with and exaggerating their flaws in his clever way. Try that in a Muslim nation, Mr. Twain.

I realized that other day that I haven't ever really "traveled" just to travel, there has always a business purpose. I've gotta try that some day.

Mira said...

Oh. And I LOVE Disneyland.

I also love the Harry Potter Amusement park although I've never been there.

Okay, enough from me. :)

Travis Erwin said...

I do love to travel but near running water, especially a mountain stream is where I feel that utopia is a real possibility.

Ken Hoss said...

Being ex Army and Navy, I traveled a lot. Between the two I got to see both Europe and Asia. My favorite place though would have to be Berchtesgaden, in Barvaria. Clean fresh mountain air, peaceful, and the people were so warm and friendly. I would love to go back again someday.

Roxanne Skelly said...

Hard question as I'm a serious traveler. I've a goal of traveling to every James Bond location, including space (skipping Uganda, North Korea and a few others for now).

Right now, I'm thinking Egypt. I went there for two weeks with 25 other bellydancers. Needless to say, we got special treatment :)

Second would be sailing in Thailand.

Anna said...

Love to travel. My two favorite places are Paris and Vancouver. I'm going to Seattle for the first time in January. I love take-offs and landings—it's odd, I know.

Shaunna said...

Firenze. I don't know why we call it Florence when its real name is so much more beautiful, but it was absolutely amazing -- and completely unexpected, too.

Charlotte Sannazzaro said...

Italy - so many diverse landscapes and cities in one country, with amazing cuisine and fantastic people. I didn't want to leave. After ten years, I'm going back in February... can't wait! :-)

Marilyn Peake said...

I absolutely love to travel, for many of the reasons you mentioned. Where are you now? I haven't traveled to a lot of places, but am hoping to travel much more in the upcoming years. I absolutely loved visiting Hawaii and taking a cruise to Alaska.

Kate said...

Sydney, Australia.

Best three weeks ever.

Helen J Beal said...

Mongolia. AMAZING.

Natalie said...

Yes, travel juices the writing soul.
Went to Ireland in 2010 - best trip ever. The beautiful countryside and people.
My favorite city though is Vancouver and I love Canadiens!

Anonymous said...

The quote from Twain only works with tourists who spend such a short time they only see the surface of places/people they visit.

"Familiarity breeds contempt." -- St. Augustine.

Margaret Reyes Dempsey said...

I love traveling to places that are not so touristy, where I can immerse myself in the rhythm of the local people. One such trip was to Gaeta, Italy, a gorgeous fishing town with mountains on one side and the sea on the other. It was once a renowned tourist resort to the wealthy, ancient Romans.

http://margaretreyesdempsey.wordpress.com/2011/08/17/travel-gaeta-italy-in-october/

tanyagrove said...

Okay, a few people already mentioned Venice, but it truly is the most magical place on Earth. What I noticed when I was there was that everyone--not just the tourists, but everyone--seemed so happy. People sang, whistled, hummed, and smiled while out and about doing their daily routine.

And I am intrigued by Ms. Blase's comment about Tulsa, OK. I'm from Oklahoma City, and I've been to Tulsa a few times. I'm betting that she must have friends and/or family there if that's her favorite destination because Tulsa is nice, but I wouldn't go there if I didn't have to.

tanyagrove said...

Okay, a few people already mentioned Venice, but it truly is the most magical place on Earth. What I noticed when I was there was that everyone--not just the tourists, but everyone--seemed so happy. People sang, whistled, hummed, and smiled while out and about doing their daily routine.

And I am intrigued by Ms. Blase's comment about Tulsa, OK. I'm from Oklahoma City, and I've been to Tulsa a few times. I'm betting that she must have friends and/or family there if that's her favorite destination because Tulsa is nice, but I wouldn't go there if I didn't have to.

Kate Higgins said...

Paris at night...

lynnfc said...

Italy...Italy....Italy...and more Italy...Florence, Roma, Cinque Terra, Sienna, San Gimignano, Pisa, Naples, Sicily, Pompeii, Venice...its the art, the people, the food, the wine, the raw emotion and the countryside. It's modern design contrasted with the Renaissance. Can't get enough...

the PolitiCrush said...

Singapore! Fascinating and beautiful.

the PolitiCrush said...

Oh, also Budapest, Hungary. The most beautiful place in the world in the winter.

Margie said...

I'm going with Iceland. I lived in Keflavik on and off-base when I was a kid. It was truly a magical existence.

Amanda P. said...

Toss up between Prague, Czech Republic and Berlin, Germany.

We lived in Germany for a while when my husband was playing pro basketball there and we got to see so many amazing things! I can't wait to go back when our son is older and can actually appreciate it!

Mary said...

Travel, just like any new book, is an adventure. I have a hard time sitting around on vacation - must explore. Do I think travel goes hand in hand with being a successful author? Uh, no.

Favorite places so far : St. Martin (French Side), Netherland Antilles and Sedona, AZ.

Dawn Simon said...

New York!

Suzanne Grenager said...

The Indian Himalaya, mother of all mountain ranges, Queen of the world, and home to sages and saints. I beat the Beatles there more than 40 years ago and was back again recently,feeling every bit as tingly and alive up there where the air is rare as I did as a kid.

Kristin Laughtin said...

I really would like to travel more! Life and finances have prevented me from going to too many of the places I want (Sweden, Ireland, England, France, Germany, Japan, South Africa...), but I did go to Australia a long time ago. IT WAS MAGICAL. Sorry, Augustine. I need to read more pages.

Have a fun and safe trip and feel free to share any pictures and the like when you get back!

veela-valoom said...

Switzerland - where I spent 3 months. Sometimes I think it takes awhile to truly know a place. I feel like I really got to know Switzerland, particularly the town where I live, and loved everything about it except the prices.
OR
Venice where I spent 2 days (unless you count the whole days spent on train to get there and back) because its just as lovely as you expect, especially if you go in October when it's not peak season.

Kimmy said...

I love everywhere I've been but I must say I am most partial to Big Island, Hawaii. The volcano is truly an experience you can't find anywhere else. Travel to me is an escape from everything - just like reading a good book!

Cathi Stoler said...

Love, love, love to travel. So far, Barcelona is my favorite place. But haven't been to Asia or S. America yet, so that may change.

I use places I've traveled in my novels. Ilove Italy, as well and a lot of the action in TELLING LIES takes place in Florence.

babette said...

I've been to all 50 of the United States, five provinces of Canada, Northern Mexico, Eastern Australia and the north island of New Zealand. This year I'm going to Belize, Honduras and Cozumel.

I can't say what's my favorite because there is something special about every place. I love meeting people and learning their cultures. It's amazing how people can be so different, yet at the core so very much the same.

jan said...

Zambia, Africa. I'll take a one way ticket, thank you very much. The 35 hour journey afforded lots of time to read. The people were awesome. There are no words to describe Victoria Falls. I'm homesick for it!

CG Blake said...

London, Hong Kong and Kyoto--breathtaking all.

Maegan Langer said...

Scotland, Brazil, South Africa, and most of all, Wales. I think I've left a little piece of myself in each of these places. Headed to New Zealand for the first time next week. Wanderlust may not be essential to a writer's life, but it certainly doesn't hurt :)

D. Michael Olive said...

Holland. I love Amsterdam, Leiden, and Groningen. Beautiful country, great people.

Jean Marie Johnson said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
rebeccam said...

Croatia -- Dubrovnik, Zadar, the island of Hvar...

Jean Marie Johnson said...

The mountains of North Carolina. At night in the dark, I wonder who lives where those little dots of light emit on the mountains so far away from everyone else.

irishoma said...

Greece. Sailing Greek Islands.

Richard Gibson said...

Many places for many reasons. I'll go with Moscow, summer 1992, a year after the fall of the Soviet Union, more or less.

For scenery and such, anywhere in New Zealand, 1981.

For personal solace, Sailor Lake, Tobacco Root Mountains, Montana.

Gael McCarte said...

An enchanted island where the houses have names not numbers, where bread is flown in each morning from France (now that IS French Bread), where your family and the person standing next to you is your first priority. Mr Chevalier will sell you vegetables from his own rich soil. You can go to France for lunch and Spain for dinner. The Island of Jersey, C.I.

Matt Larkin said...

India. Very amazing place.

TL Conway said...

Ireland. Again and again, Ireland. But if I wanted sun and beaches, I'd say Greece.

All the Scotland votes here make me think I should head there next!

Terin Tashi Miller said...

Ayayayayay. That's a bit of a tough one, Nathan.

I like to live places far more than visit them.

I have lived a lot of places, and enjoyed living there--through all four seasons--throughout my life.

I'm a bit of a gypsy that way, I guess. There are places I consider home essentially the moment I arrive, and places that never really are home no matter how many years I've lived there.

How does one pick between, say, Gangtok, Sikkim when it was a kingdom, or Kabul or Bahmian, when Afghanistan was a kingdom, for that matter, and India when it was an optimistic and fledgling secular democracy, or Kathmandu, Nepal; and Madrid, or Pamplona, or San Sebastian, or Bilbao, or Grenada or Sevilla or a small little village like Ronda, or Paris or Venezia or even Sturgeon Bay, Wisconsin or Austin, Texas?

It's like Ernest Hemingway said in the introduction to "The First 49" collection of his short stories: Paris is always good, as are Varanasi in India, and Bangalore, in the cool months or Sikkim or Darjeeling in the summer; Madrid is always a good place to write, especially in the Spring and Fall; other places are not so good, "or perhaps we were not so good when we were in them."

I currently live in a suburb in New Jersey. It's very much like the one I grew up in, when I wasn't traveling.

Another quote: "In going where you have to go, and doing what you have to do, you dull and blunt the instrument you write with. But I would rather have it dull, and bent, and have to take a grindstone to it than have it all smooth and shiny but unused and in a closet."

Now, it is time to get back to the grindstone again...

But thanks for the quick trip down memory lane.

Anonymous said...

Definitely a "wanderer by nature."

Come to think of it, calling out "ROADTRIP!" could be a good way to find fellow writers (many of whom would sacrifice a small appendage rather than admit to writing fiction.)

Can't play favorites, but one that's high on my list is Dead Horse Point S.P. in Utah.

I'm thinking of going to Dominica on a research mission...I refuse to write about Antarctica...Has anyone out there been to the island of Dominica?

Catherine Stine said...

Beijing, Southern India, Moscow. Amazing places, all!

Sara said...

Love to travel...so many amazing places to see.
Greece: love the ocean, the people, the culture, and the food.
Italy: same.
India: Because it is unlike anything I have ever experienced before and surely that is a good thing.
Australia: the people, their love of life. Hiking through the red center is something I will never forget and standing next to the most enormous tree I've ever seen in the rainforest...wow.
In the US, I love the energy of NYC and the beaches of MA.

L.Shanna: Phuket is on my top 5 list!! It looks ridiculous!

George Fripley said...

Of all the places I've been, I loved Bhutan - went twice and spent 24 days on the Snowman Trek last time. Absolutely majestic and peaceful.

George

Sierra Godfrey said...

Edinburgh, Edinburgh, Edinburgh...it always comes back to that "Athens of the North" for me. But I take a circuitous route there. I go by Santorini, Greece, first, where I spent 3 years as a kid scampering among the olive trees.

Just Another Day in Paradise said...

Love to travel. We generally move someplace for a few years. Economically it's more feasible and you really get a feel for the place. Are you kidding me?

Currently in the Caribbean. What an adventure.

Favorite place. The mystical magical Rocky Mountains. Husband and I were ski bums in a few past decades. Moved around in the High Country.

What a Long Strange Trip it's been.

Antaracomms said...

India, crazy, chaotic and alive.

Tyson Adams said...

I've been a few places. We love visiting a town named Busselton in Western Australia. Lovely place with a great bookstore.
I really enjoyed touring the country-side in Indiana (USA), New Zealand has some nice areas, and if it wasn't for the humidity I would have loved Fiji and Villa. Nomeau was awesome - small French island that is semi-tropical and is free of all the pesky things we have in Australia (snakes, scorpions, spiders, and all the other deadly animals we have).

Janiel Miller said...

I can't imagine life without travel--even just a few hours. I have a friend who loves just staying home. I'd be dead inside.

My dad was in the Air Force, so we moved around a lot. Loved living in Germany. LOVED. And my husband took me to Ireland last April for our 25th wedding anniversary. Been wanting to go for 25 years. We had no money. He robbed no banks. No idea how he pulled it off. But what an amazing, ridiculous, gorgeous, hilarious place. Felt like going home. And the people were quite marvelous. Two favorite answers I got to questions:

--Have you lived here your whole life?
--Almost.

--How to I get to Christchurch?
--Well, I wouldn't want to start from here.

See?

J.C. Martin said...

Easy. Santorini in Greece. Most magical island ever.

Jen said...

Vanuatu. The answer to this question is always Vanuatu. the island of Tanna has black sand beaches courtesy of the volcano, Yasur. You can walk up the volcano. At night, you fall asleep listening to the waves crashing on the beach and Yasur rumbling in the distance.

I could live there. Forever and ever, please!

marion said...

Enjoy your tip, Nathan! (And forget about the blog. We'll get over it!)

I have to say my fave is Egypt, where I'm living now (yes, for the WIP.)
Fascinating tension between very ancient and very modern. Ghosts from the Pharaonic age trying to jostle aside electronic signals.

Also loved Switzerland, where I lived years ago. Very expensive, though!

Anonymous said...

Funny. I would have said that in terms of an international community, Omaha was exactly like Frisco, except without the annoying tourist sheen. You've gotta find it on your own, though, and not expect it to be as well-established and affluent as say, Chinatown.

I used to eat free in this little tourist trap in San Francisco, because the owner wanted his tourists to see artsy-bohemian types for their dining buck. Any fake-er than that, and somebody'd try to sell you ears with your name embroidered on them.

For weird, I think I'd go with the Lambourn stables, in England. Nothing funnier than a racehorse swimming laps.

There's something memorable about the American cliff-dwellings, too.

Am I allowed to vote for whatever the next place is?

kelly said...

I loved every place I've ever been. Can't think of any travel I've ever regretted. Mexico really inspired me to write, daily, while I was there.

I went to Prague last year, and while it was difficult at times to feel so much outside my own cultural element, I think it was still my favorite place. Mostly because the architecture transported me back in time. London and France always take me back to the eighteenth century, but Prague took me even further back, to the middle ages.

Mostly because of that trip, I've begun writing a story set in the middle ages, and I am having my protagonist travel to Prague and spend some time in Alchemists' Row. Hoping to get back to Prague and do some research once I get to that point in my WIP. *dreaming*

Keira of LoveRomancePassion said...

Antarctica! That was spectacular and amazing and wonderful with all kinds of fangirl squeeing. Penguins, whales, birds, everywhere! Everywhere! It snowed! (I've never seen snow when it's snowing... I live in a tropical climate... and the last time I saw snow (real honest honest) was in Switzerland.) Beautiful continent. Can only get there by cruising unless you're a scientist. Don't miss seeing!

Cossette said...

Venice. So far. :-) Although Dobrovnik, Croatia, was incredibly breathtaking as well! Scotland, England, Poland,New Zealand and Switzerland are all on my bucket list. I can hardly wait.

Derrick Hibbard said...

Saba--in the Dutch Carribean. Its a small island off the coast of St. Maarten, and absolutely beautiful.

Sharon M. Smith said...

Nothing like landing in Sydney, Australia.

Jill said...

I've lived all over the world in the last 11 years: Brazil, Singapore, Switzerland, and now England -- and I've traveled to many more places. I could never pick a favorite, each one is special. I am now addicted to the adventure of being in a new place and learning everything I can. I've been so fortunate to have these opportunities, but there have been sacrifices too, and I'll mention it can be hard work! Definitely worth it though. I'm beginning to wrap my ahead around writing a memoir.

Charlee Vale said...

GREECE! It was so beautiful and filled with history and culture. You feel like you are walking through the past. There are ideas for writing just strewn along the sidewalks there, it's almost as prevalent as their graffiti.

CV

Tammy said...

My favorite place has been Mexico. It was less like visiting than a homecoming. Never before have I felt so welcomed and relaxed. Each day was a natural inspiration from the people to the scenery to the history and culture. I hope to someday live in Mexico and to make it mine in real life as much as I have made it mine in my soul.

P.I. Barrington said...

How could I forget? New England, specifically MAINE is my second ever place to visit! So different from California! If I could live there I would!

P.I. Barrington said...

Has anyone mentioned Hong Kong?
And just OT slightly: Egypt is the place I would most like to see--EVER! My dream journey!

Tres Buffalo said...

A Certain Swim Up Bar in Cancun

Daniel McNeet said...

Nathan,

Travel is actually a cure-all for intolerance. Give respect, get respect.

The Balearic Islands off the coast of Spain, Mallorca, Minorca and Ibiza. And, the food is good, too, Zarzuella comes to mind. It is like Bouillabaise but with almonds and sherry.

Enjoy your travels, Nathan.

ryandake said...

tokyo! if you can't find it in tokyo, it doesn't exist. plus, japanese people rock. such nice people.

D.G. Hudson said...

My all time fave place that I've traveled is Paris,France. Once you've been there, you have this strong desire to go back and wallow in history and lovely cafes.

We could easily live there. (I've been influenced reading by 20th century French authors)

Key West, and San Francisco are other favorites. I still want to see London, Portugal, and New York.

salima said...

Schwangau, Germany. And Edinburgh, Scotland. And the Black Forest in Germany.

kate said...

my favorite place to have traveled to, above and beyond the tyrolian alps or anyplace else in the ever so magical europe, is the forest behind my house. every evening as the sun sets i cross the driveway and climb the small embankment leading into the forest and i wait. it isn't long before my raccoons, opossum, foxes, and stray cats come (i suppose i should mention that i bring a large amount of food and water otherwise you'll think i have some st. francis complex). the forest at night is like a whole other world...and who wouldn't want a raccoon crawling into their lap?

CricketW said...

JAPAN! I traveled there alone, and I recommend such travel to everyone. I read not a word of Japanese but before I left I learned to say just two Japanese phrases: (polite version of) 'where is the restroom' and 'thank you.' Somehow not knowing the language brought unexpected serendipity to my experience. I could write forever just about that trip. And also interesting, the locals' reactions to me (blonde westerner) off the normal tourist-beaten paths; hospitable in every way, but clearly, I was just plain weird looking to them!

brianw said...

It seems like maybe there are a lot of people who have traveled to way cooler places than me, but I'll comment anyway. Just yesterday I went to Maroon Bells, the most photographed place in all of Colorado (just outside of Aspen). I am ashamed to say that I have never been there before, even though I'm a Colorado native. We missed the full beauty of fall (most of the leaves had fallen) and it was still amazing.

Will said...

I haven't traveled much (yet), but I'm not sure I'd have any one favorite place even if I had. My taste's a bit more nebulous--if it's anywhere peaceful and refreshing that allows me to just sit back and think about whatever with no time constraints, it's more precious than gold to me. The place that tends to happen the most, though, is in the woods--bonus points if there's a ledge of rock beside a waterfall. I've had some brilliant ideas in that setting, and it's still quite calming and enjoyable whether I get any new ideas or not.

P.I. Barrington said...

I'd love to be able to say that!

Henri said...

Slovenia

Anonymous said...

Love to travel! I've ventured around the world a lot longer than I've been writing.

Most exotic location: Egypt
Intriguing: All along the beautiful Mediterreanean
Historical factors: China
Nicest people: Bangladesh

There's something good about every place I've set foot on.

Bonnie said...

Bryce Canyon, Utah, is the most beautiful.
Pompeii, Italy, is the most amazing.

K. M. Walton said...

Ireland. It is one of the most stunning and magical places on earth.

The beer = outstanding.

The coastline = breathtaking.

The people = kind and lively.

Susie said...

I love to travel.I've been to Portugal many times and love it. My mother own a home there so it make it easy. I also love Spain, maybe because it's so similar to Portugal and loved a trip to London a did about five years ago. Europe to me is just so full of history and mystery. There's something about how Europe ages that is beautiful

Leigh D'Ansey said...

Visiting the Taj Mahal was a most magical and memorable experience. I'd go there again in a hearbeat. India itself is an overwhelming and totally fascinating cacaphony of history, culture, noise, colour and vivid humanity - explosions of experience that are too much to take in all at once but marvellous to reflect on in the quiet of home.

ED Martin said...

Eze-Village, France. There's a pathway leading up the mountain from the modern town to the medieval town, with a bench strategically placed to sit and watch the ocean framed between two other mountains. I could happily spend a good chunk of my life sitting on that bench.

Kim G. said...

New Orleans. Fun times and great food!

Rob Smith said...

South of Sweden. While in Sweden I stayed in Stockholm for about about ten days and spent four in South Sweden, visiting different small towns and rural communities. We could see Denmark across the sea. It was like visiting a frosty Hawaii, with Nordic history all around.

Tanya @ Lovely Greens said...

South Africa...a beautiful country once torn apart by apartheid and still suffering from racial, cultural, environmental and economic clashes.

Matthew MacNish said...

We miss you, Nathan, but hope you're having a great trip.

The Desert Rocks said...

Have fun traveling and yes it is important but I'm glad I got it out of my system. Now I prefer to reflect on all the wonderful places I've been all over the world.

janesadek said...

Wherever I'm headed to next!

Fernando Gros said...

LiJiang, Copenhagen and Boston have all left a big impression on me.

Safe travels!

David Gaughran said...

Argentina.

Not only does it have the best beef in the world, some of the tastiest red wine, and very beautiful people, it also gave me the idea for my first novel (and steered me away from the misguided fictional autobiography of a failed hand model that was really one joke stretched over three hundred pages.

Thank you Argentina!

Marilyn Brant said...

Italy...sigh. Always, Italy. Love the scenery, the people, the art and the food.

Nicole Marie Schreiber said...

Europe is my favorite continent. I've lived in Florence and traveled around Italy, Germany, Austria, Switzerland, England, Ireland, Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland, Belgium, Czech Republic, and Germany. I loved Thailand as well and I love the New England states in the US (Though I live in Oregon, which is very nice, too.)

It seems that the very last place I have traveled to is usually my favorite, so Prague really stands out right now since it was my last European city and Boston since it was my last American city I visited.

My second love, besides writing, is travel! No wonder I write historical fiction. :-)

Nick Lewandowski said...

For sheer travel excitement, Egypt.

But the Cinque Terra Villages near Genoa were spectacular in a whole other way.

Anonymous said...

Hi, I like the Scottish borders, the south west of London, Spain's Costa Del Sol and Seville, Rome, Canadian Rockies (Jasper to Banff), Norway Fjords, Robin Pope jeep safaris, Copenhagen, any boats, Guilin mountains and Switzerland best ;)

C.E. Hart said...

I love to travel, and often incorporate my traveling experiences into my stories. :)

My favorite place I've visited, hands down, is Italy. I want to go back desperately. Lucca is a medieval walled Tuscan city that stole my heart.

Emily Anderson said...

I've had lots of favorite vacations for different reasons. Machi Picchu was ethereal, Paris fascinating, Disneyland a childhood favorite, but my favorite vacation has to be the first time I traveled by myself to see the tiny town I set my first novel. Driving down the streets my character walked was magical in a cerebral sense. I still think about it all the time

Meghan Ward said...

That's a tough question! I lived in Paris for a long time, and it will always be my favorite city. But I loved traveling to Prague and spending time in Tokyo and scuba diving in Honduras. India was crazy and dirty and wonderful and magical - definitely my most memorable trip.

Rebecca Kiel said...

It is a toss-up between Aruba and Salzburg.

Nicole McInnes said...

Egypt was the place where I felt most at home - almost (as cheesy as this sounds) as if I had been there before. Truly loved it.

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