Have you done something that scared you recently? How did it go?
Tomorrow, I'm jumping off my own little cliff with the launch of a project that's been brewing for a few months now:
It's called The Better Travel Podcast, and I'm the creator and host!
The podcast is aimed at people who love to travel and who want to make sure they do it the right way. People (like me!) who would jump at the chance to spend a week in Venice, but who worry about those anti-tourism protests they read about. People who want to see the world, but who are concerned about their carbon footprint. People who want to get past the stereotypes and marketing hype of the cities they visit and have a genuine experience of a place.
The travel industry is huge! It's also really complicated -- and I would love to help you navigate it. So over the course of the first season, I'm going to be taking you to some of my favorite places, including Paris, Hawaii, New Zealand, and Iceland. I'm going to be interviewing groundbreaking leaders who are forging a better path from within the travel industry. And I'm going to be talking to committed travelers who are taking a more thoughtful approach to seeing the world.
You can listen to the trailer right now! You can also subscribe and the first two episodes will show up in your feed tomorrow morning. I'll be working with my brilliant producer, Artemis Irvine, to get you a new episode every Thursday for the next 12 weeks.
It is my sincere hope that you will find these conversations engaging, eye-opening and useful. To that end, I would love to hear from you: What questions would you like me to dive into? What destinations do you want to learn more about? What issues are you struggling with when it comes to travel?
Thank you so much for your support. And I'm so eager to hear what you think!
The Writing Life
How do you feel about Airbnb? Have you ever been a host? Are there a lot of Airbnb rentals in your neighborhood? If so, what effect have they had on your quality of life?
In August, I went to Barcelona for The New York Times and put those kinds of questions to as many people as I could. I got the whole range of responses -- from people who wanted to ban all forms of short-term rentals to others who saw it as harmless and a vital source of income for locals. Judging from the many comments that have come in on the piece, the strong opinions aren't limited to Barcelona.
It was a fascinating and challenging piece to research and write, and it really brought home to me just how much tourism affects the daily lives (for better and for worse) of people who live in the places that get a lot of visitors.
That's all for now (I'll save my book recs for next month...). Thanks so much for reading -- and maybe for listening too! I really appreciate it.