Travel as a Political Act

This travel memoir (304 pages) was published in February of 2018 by Rick Steves. The book takes you to the countries of the world. Melissa read Travel as a Political Act and loved it; it wouldn't be on our site if she didn't recommend it.

Travel as a Political Act

Rick Steves

It’s no exaggeration to say that without Rick Steves’ first-rate travel inspiration, we would probably not have moved from the U.S. to Prague in 2017. We’re loyal fans of his detailed guidebooks and nerdily entertaining TV show.

If you’re interested in local culture and getting to know a city beyond the general tourist recommendations, Rick Steves’ guides are for you. His books are packed with practical advice and guidance on hotels, restaurants, transportation, and more. In addition, three things make them worth reading: his walking tours, his history recaps, and his insider tips.

But this thought-provoking book is something more. It’s a manifesto for traveling with compassion and fearlessness, a challenge to be goodwill ambassadors as we explore the world. Although Steves has been traveling the globe for decades, he still marvels at learning about other cultures, and his enthusiasm is infectious. But he’s not pollyanna: Steves recognizes that the world is wrestling with divisive, troubling events — Trump, Brexit, climate change, populism, the resurfacing of fascism. And he argues that now is the best, most important time to travel. Meeting people from other cultures and seeing how they interact — with us and among themselves — is one of the best ways to build understanding, which leads to respect and empathy.

Travel, like reading, helps us understand that the world is both more wondrous — and a bit smaller — than we realize. By sharing his experiences in Europe, Central America, Asia, and the Middle East, Steves demonstrates that we can gain a deeper understanding of our own culture by immersing ourselves in others’ homelands.

As Steves educates legions of travelers, he’s also making our world an even better place. All royalties from the sales of this book are donated to Bread for the World, a non-partisan organization working to end hunger at home and abroad.

Rather than accentuate the difference between “us” and “them,” I believe travel should bring us together…. [Travel] has humbled me, enriched my life, and tuned me into a rapidly changing world. And for that, I am thankful. — Charlotte

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