This Week in Travel (Issue No. 28)

As you heard, the Total Solar Eclipse has come and gone in mere minutes, but the frenzy surrounding the majestic eclipse, which had begun months in advance, continues to be a topic of interest. If you weren’t able to catch a glimpse, Condé Nast has gathered some pretty fantastic photos capturing the main event of the summer. Small towns all over the United States celebrated the solar eclipse with a more than average spike in population as eclipse goers travelled to Oregon, Idaho, and Wyoming—to name a few. But if the US eclipse wasn’t on your radar, start planning a trip now to see the celestial event in South America in 2019.

Another hot event coming in less than a week, Burning Man 2017 showcases incredible art installations on the playa every year in Nevada’s Black Rock Desert. And along with these radical, giant sculptures, thousands of individuals flock to the temporary desert city to be apart of the experience becoming one of the largest cities in Nevada for just a week. Photographer and blogger Jessica Yurasek shares images taken over the last six years showing one of the most unique experiences of humans interacting with such large scale sculptures.

A destination less frequented that should spark some curiosity, this tropical island received about 2000 international visitors last year, making it the least-visited country according to the World Tourism Organization. Tuvalu, located between Hawaii and Australia near the popular Fiji Island, is made up of three reef islands and has a distinct island cultural filled with their unique music, dance and legends. This may entice travellers to add Tuvalu to their list. And no surprise, in contrast, reports reveal France as the most visited country with 83 million tourists followed by the US.

Often overshadowed by Austria’s sought after cities: Vienna and Salzburg, the second largest city Graz, is the most underrated city in Austria. Even without its luster similar to Vienna, there are plenty of reasons why Graz should be on your list of places to frequent in Austria. At the top of the list, Graz is one of Europe’s best-kept Old Towns with exquisite structures to prove it. And not too shabby, the Schlossberg, a mountain in the middle of the city, is a sight for sore eyes.

In other news, a travel ban has been imposed on North Korea to British travellers, who seem to be at risk as tensions increase in North Korea. Recent threats unveiled in a propaganda video by North Korea showing Guam attack raises concerns for travellers heading to North Korea. The Foreign Office advises those visiting to “follow the advice of your tour group and the local authorities” diligently as you could easily put yourself at risk or face severe punishment.

Isle of Skye is another destination that has seen a huge tourist boom this past summer; attention locals do not exactly love. Interest in the island’s waterfalls, villages and cliffs have drastically increased to the point that locals are noticing a decline in the island’s infrastructure. With that, a campaign has been launched to charge a small tourist tax in order to fund infrastructure improvements. And with travellers showing up without booking accommodation in advance, there has been a plea for a long-term sustainable tourism plan in order to ease overcrowding and protect Skye’s beautiful idyllic features.

As you know by now, we are strong advocates of travelling while learning about the world. But of course with that comes responsibilities as travellers to understand the impact we have when visiting the places we love. The World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) launched a new campaign “Travel.Enjoy.Respect” recognizing the importance of sustainable tourism and focusing on promoting tourists to use travel “as a catalyst for positive change.” We have spoken about destinations affected by the high volume of travellers increasing each year, most recently Dubrovnik in Croatia, which in turn has caused the implementation of new measures in order to control these numbers. With natural environments at risk, the campaign aims to encourage responsible travellers by giving recommendations to be the best kind of traveller: “respect nature, respect culture and respect your host”; and therefore promote leaving a positive impact on the destinations they visit.

Photo provided by Lisa Murray.

Happy Travels

The Kosan Team

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