Alastair Humphreys and filmmaker Tem set off from the city to summit Suilven, a remote mountain in the Scottish Highlands, with the aid of Brompton’s Explore Edition, small folding bicycles, and inflatable canoes.
A full length (1h:10m) documentary video of a four-month motorcycle adventure from London, UK to Sydney, Australia, taken by two friends — David Darcy and Darren Higginson — back in 2012.
UNESCO (United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization) on July 10, 2020 at it’s meeting in Paris, designated 15 new Geoparks. There are now 162 designated sites across 44 countries.
UNESCO said »
These sites of exceptional geological and cultural significance showcase the beauty and diversity of planet Earth. Today 162 sites across the world document our planet’s evolution over 4.6 billion years, unlocking our history preserved in the rock record to learn from the past and support local communities.
- Cliffs of Fundy UNESCO Global Geopark in Nova Scotia, Canada (Twitter)
- Discovery UNESCO Global Geopark, Bonavista Peninsula in Newfoundland and Labrador (Twitter)
- Xiangxi UNESCO Global Geopark, in Hunan Province, China
- Zhangye UNESCO Global Geopark, in Zhangye City, Gansu Province, China
- Lauhanvuori-Hämeenkangas UNESCO Global Geopark in Finland (Twitter)
- Toba Caldera UNESCO Global Geopark, on Sumatra Island, Indonesia
- Rio Coco UNESCO Global Geopark, in Nicaragua
- Estrela UNESCO Global Geopark, in Portugal (Twitter)
- Hantangang UNESCO Global Geopark, in Korea
- Yangan-Tau UNESCO Global Geopark, in Republic of Bashkortostan, Russian Federation
- Djerdap UNESCO Global Geopark, in Serbia
- Granada UNESCO Global Geopark, in Spain (Twitter)
- Maestrazgo UNESCO Global Geopark, in Spain
- The Black Country UNESCO Global Geopark, in England, UK (Twitter)
- Dak Nong UNESCO Global Geopark, in Dak Nong Province, Viet Nam
- Kula-Salihli UNESCO Global Geopark, in the Aegean Region of Turkey (Twitter)
More » UNESCO
More » Wikipedia entry for UNESCO Global Geoparks
Chinese authorities have recognized that tourism is a key pillar of their economy, and they continue to invest heavily to improve infrastructure and standards, in addition to opening up the country with increasingly tourism-friendly policies and initiatives.
At the World Travel Market in London, Euromonitor International’s Head of Travel Caroline Bremner said: “Destinations like China are poised for a successful performance in inbound tourism, with China set to overtake France as the leading destination worldwide by 2030.”
The report estimates there will be 127 million arrivals in China each year by the end of the next decade, compared to 126 million in France and 116 million in the US.
And as household incomes and standards of living continue to rise, more Chinese are predicted to be travelling overseas in the coming decade than any other nationality.
Read more at World Economic Forum
The Henley Passport Index is a ranking of the world’s passports according to the number of destinations their holders can access without first obtaining a visa.
Henley & Partners released this press release today:
Japan has overtaken Singapore to claim the top spot on the 2018 Henley Passport Index, having gained visa-free access to Myanmar this month. Japan now enjoys visa-free/visa-on-arrival access to 190 destinations, compared to Singapore’s total of 189. The countries have been neck and neck since they both climbed to 1st place in February, pushing Germany down to 2nd place for the first time since 2014.
Germany has now fallen further to 3rd place, which it shares with South Korea and France. Their nationals enjoy visa-free access to 188 countries. France moved up a place last Friday when it gained visa-free access to Uzbekistan. Iraq and Afghanistan continues to sit at the bottom (106th) of the Henley Passport Index — based on exclusive data from the International Air Transport Association(IATA).
The US and the UK, both with 186 destinations, have slid down yet another spot — from 4th to 5th place — with neither having gained access to any new jurisdictions since the start of 2018. With stagnant outbound visa activity compared to Asian high-performers, it seems unlikely they will regain the number 1 spot they jointly held in 2015 any time soon.
In general, the UAE has made the most remarkable ascent on the Henley Passport Index, from 62nd place in 2006 to 21st place worldwide currently, and looking ahead, the most dramatic climb might come from Kosovo, which officially met all the criteria for visa-liberalization with the EU in July and is now in discussions with the European Council.
Russia received a boost in September when Taiwan announced a visa-waiver, but the country has nonetheless fallen from 46th to 47th place due to movements higher up the ranking. The same is true of China: Chinese nationals obtained access to two new jurisdictions (St. Lucia and Myanmar), but the Chinese passport fell two places, to 71st overall.
Dr. Christian H. Kälin, Group Chairman of Henley & Partners, says countries with citizenship-by-investment (CBI) programs all fall within the top 50 of the Henley Passport Index. Newcomer Moldova, which is due to launch its CBI program in November, has climbed 20 places since 2008. “The travel freedom that comes with a second passport is significant, while the economic and societal value that CBI programs generate for host countries can be transformative,” says Dr. Kälin.
The top countries are:
1. Japan (190 countries)
2. Singapore (189 countries)
3. Germany (188 countries)
4. (Tied) France, South Korea, Denmark, Finland, Italy, Sweden, Spain (187 countries)
5. (Tied) Norway, United Kingdom, Austria, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Portugal, USA (186 countries)
6. (Tied) Belgium, Switzerland, Canada, Ireland (185 countries)
7. (Tied) Australia, Greece, Malta (183 countries)
8. (Tied) New Zealand, Czech Republic (182 countries)
9. Iceland (181 countries)
10. (Tied) Hungary, Slovenia, Malaysia (180 countries)
The Michelin Guide has announced the new winners for 2019. 21 new restaurants in Great Britain and Ireland received their first Michelin star and three more received a second. None reached a third.
The first ever Michelin Guide was produced for French motorists 118 years ago, in 1900. One star meant a restaurant was good and worthy of a stop; two that it mérite un détour (justified a detour); and three that it was so exceptional that it warranted a special journey.
Restaurants to received two Michelin stars:
1. Clare Smyth’s Core in Notting Hill, London
2. James Knappett’s Bubbledogs Kitchen Table in Fitzrovia, London
3. Mark Birchall’s Moor Hall in Lancashire
Restaurants to receive their first Michelin star:
1. Tomos Parry’s Brat in Hackney, London
2. Jeremy Chan’s Ikoyi in Westminster, London
3. Nieves Barragán Mohacho and José Etura’s Sabor in Westminster, London
4. Ollie Dabbous’ Hide in Mayfair, London
5. Sam Kamienko, Ed Thaw and Jack Lewens’ Leroy in Hackney, London
6. Simon Rogan’s Roganic in Westminster, London
7. Simon Rogan’s Rogan & Co, Cartmel, Cumbria
8. Chris Simpson’s Gidleigh Park, Chagford, Devon
9. Steve Drake’s Sorrel, Dorking, Surrey
10. Tim Allen’s Flitch of Bacon, Dunmow, Essex
11. Chris Cleghorn’s Olive Tree, Bath, Somerset
12. Colin McGurran’s Winteringham Fields, Scunthorpe, Lincolnshire
13. Paul Foster’s Salt, Stratford-upon-Avon, Warwickshire
14. Paul Welburn’s Oxford Kitchen, Oxford, Oxfordshire
15. Daniel Smith’s Fordwich Arms, Canterbury, Kent
16. Tom Parker’s White Swan, Fence, Lancashire
17. Dom Robinson’s Blackbird, Bagnor Berkshire
18. George Livesey’s Bulrush, Bristol
19. Ahmet Dede’s Mews, Baltimore, County Cork
20. Takashi Miyazaki’s Ichigo Ichie, Cork
21. Rob Krawczyk’s Chestnut, Ballydehob, County Cork
There are now a total of 155 one-Michelin-star establishments, 20 two-star and five three-star in the UK and Ireland.
If chasing the most remote Michelin star restaurant is what you are after, then check out Koks, the worlds most remote foodie destination. (The New Yorker)
The Michelin Guide
More at Conde Nast Traveller
There are others. These were suggested by readers of The Guardian.
- Passau, Germany, to Vienna, Austria.
- The pilgrim route from Canterbury to Rome.
- The River Loire, France.
- The Romantic Road, southern Germany.
- From Rotterdam, take the Eurovelo 2cycle trail, also called the Capitals Route, across the Netherlands and Germany to Berlin, then on to Moscow if you wish.
- Gospić to Karlobag, along the Croatian seaside.
- The Amalfi coast, in Italy.
- Milan to Sanremo, 200 km leg of the The Giro d’Italia.
- From Dieppe to Paris in the French countryside.
- Baie de Somme, Picardie, France.
More at The Guardian
According to the United Nations World Tourism Organization’s 2018 Tourism Highlights, the total number of international tourist arrivals (overnight visitors) grew 7 percent from 2016 to 2017.
International tourist arrivals reached a total of 1.323 billion in 2017, some 84 million more than the previous year and a new record. The sector has now seen uninterrupted growth in arrivals for eight straight years.
2017 was the eighth consecutive year of above- average growth in international tourism following the 2009 global economic crisis. The growth in the travel and tourism industry has been fuelled by the global economic upswing, resulting in strong outbound demand.
By region, Europe and Africa saw bigger than average growth of 8 and 9 percent, respectively. By subregion, North Africa and Southern and Mediterranean Europe saw the greatest increases in 2017, reflecting strong demand for destinations along the Mediterranean.
When looking at sheer numbers, Europe continues to lead with almost half of the world’s total international arrivals, at 671 million. Europe was also home to six of the ten most visited countries in 2017, with France remaining in the lead.
Spain overtook the USA for second place as international tourism to the USA was down almost 4%. Continue reading
Each year, the Economist Intelligence Unit release its annual Global Livability Index which measuring the most livable large cities in the world. In this year’s report, Vienna, Austria has succeeded in displacing Melbourne, Australia from the stop spot, which it previously held for a record seven consecutive years.
The Economist says:
The concept of liveability is simple: it assesses which locations around the world provide the best or the worst living conditions.
The Economist Intelligence Unit’s liveability rating quantifies the challenges that might be presented to an individual’s lifestyle in 140 cities worldwide. Each city is assigned a score for over 30 qualitative and quantitative factors across five broad categories of Stability, Healthcare, Culture and environment, Education and Infrastructure.
The 20 top rankings are populated with cities in Europe (9), Australia (4), Japan (2), New Zealand (1), and Canada (4).
Honolulu was the highest U.S. city at number 23. The next highest American city was Pittsburgh in 32nd position. Manchester was the highest ranked in the UK at number 35.
Here are the top 50:
1. Vienna, Austria
2. Melbourne, Australia
3. Osaka, Japan
4. Calgary, Canada
5. Sydney, Australia
6. Vancouver, Canada
7. (Tied) Tokyo, Japan
7. (Tied) Toronto, Canada
9. Copenhagen, Denmark
10. Adelaide, Australia