Go With a Purpose.
A blog about connecting through places that matter.

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Heritage Q&A with Travelogged Founder Liz Borod Wright

Today’s post is next in a series of Q&As with people with a passion for heritage- and culture-related travel.

Liz Borod Wright launched her travel blog, Travelogged, in which she not only writes about her own trips but about other people’s adventures, allowing her to cover a wider variety of destinations. She has held editorial staff positions at Zagat, ABCNews.com, Good Housekeeping and Fortune.com. She also is working on a novel.

1. Where have you found inspiration and/or life enrichment during your travels?
I have always loved going to museums. Sometimes just spending a few hours looking at art and artifacts can feel like a vacation in and of itself. Whenever I am traveling, I try to schedule in at least one museum visit. It’s great when I get lucky and they are having an interesting exhibit, but I also like seeing the permanent collection, especially if it includes local artists and/or depicts local scenery and history.

2. Tell us about your most recent trip. What heritage or cultural sites did you visit?
My most recent trip was to Northern California. I went to Half Moon Bay, Carmel, Big Sur, Napa and San Francisco. It was my first time to this part of our country, and I was struck by the incredible natural beauty. As we drove from Half Moon Bay to Carmel, we stopped in the tiny historic town of Pescadero and had lunch at Duarte’s Tavern, which has been around since 1894. A few miles further down Highway 1, we stopped and admired Pigeon Point Lighthouse. I was thoroughly charmed by Carmel-by-Sea, which has enormous amount of art galleries for a small place. San Francisco was the obvious heavyweight of the group when it comes to culture, and I loved seeing the Victorian architecture (particularly around Alamo Square), the Embarcadero and Haight-Ashbury. I also made sure to visit the de Young Museum, which is in a stunning modern building.

3. What is your most memorable heritage or cultural travel experience?
This is a tough question, because I’ve been lucky enough to take some fantastic trips. But I think I will choose the first sightseeing family trip that I can remember from my childhood, which was to Washington, D.C. I loved taking the hop-on hop-off tour bus and seeing all of the famous sights I had learned about in school. I also remember how much I loved the Air & Space Museum and the American History Museum — especially the First Ladies’ dresses. It wasn’t until I was older that I could appreciate the city’s beauty and how, as a planned city, it resembles Paris.

4. Where is one heritage or cultural destination you think everyone with your interests should visit?
As a lifelong New Yorker, I always tell people they have to visit New York City at least once in their lifetimes so they can experience its remarkable energy for themselves. I truly believe that the quality and diversity of cultural options available here are unparalleled. Visitors can’t expect to see and do it all but they have to at least attend a Broadway show, spend time at the Metropolitan Museum and have a delicious meal. You can get a feel for old New York by strolling down Park Avenue, ambling around Central Park, walking through the West Village or exploring the Financial District.

5. What sorts of things do you like to learn during your travels?
I always hope to pick up some knowledge of the local culture during my travels. I find that it’s hard to predict what you’re going to learn but that no matter what you walk away with it helps you understand the world at large.

6. What does heritage travel mean to you?
To me, heritage travel means learning as much as you can about a place before you visit it. Knowing the history helps you to appreciate the present, as well as what remains of the past.

7. What are your favorite heritage- and culture-rich destinations?
Since I live in the city, I like to visit heritage-rich destinations that allow me the chance to enjoy nature, too. I love how Newport, Rhode Island, not only offers incredible mansions to tour but also has some nice beaches. Key West may be celebrated for its nightlife and water sports, but I found its Old Town quite impressive and full of interesting history.

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