Tag Archives | Customs

Customs and traditions make for some of the best travel stories. Here are travel posts from Inside the Travel Lab on customs and practices from around the world, from curses to parties, religious processions to setting food on fire, to declaring undying love…

Central Amalfi

When Life Hands You Lemons…

Lemons. They’re all over the place in the narrow streets of olive and stone-soaked Amalfi. […]

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The Importance of A Woman’s Hair, China

In many a culture, the lusciousness of a woman’s locks says something about her status. […]

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Cape Town Rainbow

Why South Africa Is Called the Rainbow Nation

Why South Africa is called the Rainbow Nation I’m in South Africa right now and […]

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Sunscreen in Myanmar: Thanaka

In Myanmar/Burma, people use thanaka on their cheeks to stay beautiful and to protect against […]

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Beer Can Regatta Crocodile

Darwin’s Beer Can Regatta

Spain has the Tomatina, Britain has cheese-rolling and Texas has rodeo. Step forward Australia, with […]

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Christmas in Basel

And To All A Good Night…

Wherever you are and whatever you think about Christmas, I hope that you’ve had a […]

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The Man Who Makes Baubles for the Pope

Weinachtsbaumschmuckausstattungsgeschäft. At 40 letters long, Weinachtsbaumschmuckausstattungsgeschäft’s the longest word there is, at least on the snowy-sweet streets of Basel. And while…

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Dawn over Kakadu

Kakadu Park: Smoke, Art & Crocodiles

Kakadu. The sound is soft yet distinctive, like a bird call that rolls and unfolds across the willows and the reeds, the waters, the low and smoky air, to reach me on the scrunched and scorched soil. On the earth that is itself Kakadu.

The word…

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Team GB book

Just What I Think About the Olympics

Ready, Set… Boom. The London 2012 Olympics are here. I watched the flames fill each […]

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Asukasa golden dragon

Swastikas & Smoke: Sensoji in Japan

I love this photo. I love the smoke, I love the skin creases…

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Colosseum

Love on the Edge of Death

A surprise find in the Roman Colosseum…

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Big Ben at night - seen from the River Thames

Audio On Travel & Philosophy at the LSE

How do we know when we’ve arrived when we travel? Because we recognise the image we’ve already seen. We think we’re chasing new experiences but we’re actually chasing our memories.” Dr Gillespie

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Swimming in Budapest baths

The Water of Winter: Baths in Budapest

The steam rising out of the drain cover caught my attention first. It was a cold, vengefully cold mid-winter morning in

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Feynan Eco Lodge Bedouin Sunset

A Night With The Bedouin

Sparks hissed from the fire where we clustered beneath the stars. The group fell silent, waiting for Hussein to finish his story. He sat cross-legged, wearing the traditional thawb and keffiyeh, his deep eyes lined with kohl.

“My darling,” he said, fixing his eyes on the girl in front of him. “Forget the astronomer. Come with me. I’ll show you the stars in the day.”

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sweet love fika

Sweet Love in Sweden: First Impressions & Fika

Fika. So said the letters, so said my host. It was not yet four in the afternoon and I began to brace myself.

The word fika, I decided, had all the hallmarks of a potent local spirit, the sort that could stand in for paint stripper on an identity parade and would give you a headache as soon as look at you…

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Pizza Ideas - Pizza in a glass

P-P-Pizza Ideas: The World’s Most Creative Pizzeria

“I’m not a cook. I’m a fixer man.”

It’s a striking opening line from anyone, but coming from Fabián Martín, it sounds particularly ominous…

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Enburi ribbons at a winter festival

Hot Octopus & Straw Shoes: Winter Festivals in Japan

Whenever I feel the cold breath of winter on my neck as autumn runs out of time, my tastebuds turn to octopus, the signature dish at…

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About poppy day

Red is for Remembrance: About Poppy Day

“You have blood on your hands,” she said as she jabbed me in the ribs. “And you’re celebrating mass murder.”

As a travel writer with a British passport, the first statement is something of an occupational hazard…

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Bregenzerwald Werkraum

Bregenzerwald: The Side of Austria They Don’t Want You To See

I arrived in Schwarzenberg just as the funeral procession entered the graveyard. Scratched clouds lingered overhead, matching the mourners’ sorrow with their weightless, clawing rain…

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Afternoon Tea

Dirt, Sweat & Cucumber Sandwiches – English Afternoon Tea

A clock plods through its strict rhythm as the clink of china echoes through

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