Gulang Yu

At the turn of the twentieth century, Gulang Yu (鼓浪嶼 “Drum Wave Islet”) was one of two foreign concessions in China (the other being Shanghai). Because of this, the island is full of European-style mansions and churches. It also has a piano museum and a calligraphic wood carving museum (my personal favorite attraction). Cars and bicycles are banned on the island, so the tourists get to walk around and take it all in.

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A Trip to Kinmen Island

A few weeks ago, my mom made the long flight to Hong Kong to visit Katie and me. After spending a couple days around our home, the three of us went on a trip. Our first stop was Kinmen Island, which sits close to the Chinese mainland and is controlled by Taiwan. It was a fascinating place, rich with history. The vibe was very laid back and the people were quite friendly.

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AtW #81: Alec Hill

Alec Hill is a world traveler who is just getting started on an open-ended trip. In fact, Hong Kong was his first international stop, and I was his second Couchsurfing host. We chatted about how he got here and what lies on the road ahead for him.

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AtW #80: Alison Price

Katie and I met Alison Price many years ago at the Twin Ports invasion, dubbed “The World's Coldest Couchsurfing Invasion”, a claim that I do no dispute. Alison is an amazing artist based in Minneapolis.

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Kashmir On My Mind

A few months ago, Katie and I met Pradeepika Saraswat while traveling in Hampi, southern India. We hit it off and she later invited us to visit her in Delhi, where we recorded this podcast. Pradeepika is a journalist who has spent much time living in Kashmir, a region over which India and Pakistan have fought multiple wars. I also visited Kashmir a few years back and became very interested in the region, so naturally, this was the main focus of our discussion.

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AtW #77: India Roundup

With only a few days left in our ten-month trip, Katie and I recapped our time in India and discussed how travel has changed us. Lots of good philosophical advice in this one.

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Trekking the Annapurna Circuit

Katie and I had an amazing month of trekking the Annapurna Circuit in Nepal. Along with the gorgeous scenery and the extreme physical challenge of hiking to the 5416-meter Thorung Pass, the people were the highlight of our trek. Those who lived along the trail were extremely friendly, as were the other trekkers we met. And among them were today's guests, Martijn and Manon. We made some time a few days after finishing our trek to record a podcast and reminisce our month in the mountains.

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Tattoo Witness: What Do You Ink?

Ruwan Perera hosted Katie and me at his home near Colombo, Sri Lanka. While we were there, Ruwan was also hosting a couple of tattoo artists from Ukraine. They asked Ruwan if he would like a tattoo in exchange for hosting them, and he said yes. In our podcast, Ruwan discusses getting his first tattoo, as well as some of the history of his country, and the importance of Couchsurfing and similar networks in this age of modern travel.

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