Exploring the Place Where You Live
Updated: Dec 12, 2021
Travelers stuck at home over the last year (or nearly two) did not stop thinking, dreaming, and scheming about travel. Even though we were more often staying still, it didn’t stop our minds from wandering. As we navigate tricky openings and closings, mask etiquette, vaccine hesitation, and loads of information and misinformation, we may very well find ourselves too exhausted (overworked? extra anxious?) to travel too far or too often or too soon. On the flip side, it’s leading many of us to explore the places we live in a thorough and thoughtful way. Here's how team TIBIC has been traveling close to home lately.
Hiking in Los Angeles is my pandemic salve. We moved from New York to LA in the middle of covid, when the city was totally shut down. So we hiked. I knew of the famous routes, but the variety and scope has been a nice surprise. Trails to swimming holes and lakes, up mountain passes and down to beach tide pools. We especially love Flat Rock Beach for the tide pools and rope climb to get back to the parking lot or Inspiration Point for stunning views of the Pacific Ocean and - sometimes - the Channel Islands.
With three very small kids in one very small apartment, we spent most of our height-of-covid times at the beaches, botanic gardens, and farms of Eastern Long Island, which I researched and wrote about here and here with evergreen recommendations that will hopefully serve as a resource beyond the pandemic era. I spent much of last summer co-writing Travel North America (and Avoid Being a Tourist), which hit shelves this summer and will hopefully inspire vacationers for many seasons to come.
Nestor Lara Baeza
Though I decamped to Florida for much of the winter, when in New York I took advantage of the great outdoors and explored the Finger Lakes region. The area had long been on my “to do” list for its wineries, hiking trails, and charming inns, and I was finally able to bring it to the top of the priority list. Anchored at the cozy E.B. Morgan House by Inns of Aurora, my husband and I bounced around wineries, including our favorite sparkling wine destination, Hermann J. Weimer. Closer to home, I rediscovered some of my favorite neighborhood walks and explored the outdoor dining scene, which I hope sticks around after the pandemic.
Naledi K. Khabo
I’m used to being bi-continental but my primary residence is the NYC Metro area, and I honestly didn’t leave my house much during the pandemic beyond running necessary local errands. However, I was able to travel to South Africa for a considerable period of time and spend quality time with my mom and a few relatives in a “bubble” that we had formed. During this time, I was fortunate enough to make several trips to explore various open-air destinations and check out some new properties, including Kruger Shalati, The Train On the Bridge.
Like many people in New York, the endless loop of sirens kept me indoors for most of last spring — I was terrified to leave my apartment to venture down the block, let alone board a train or plane. Instead, when I finally started emerging from my shell, I set out to discover New York City, my longtime home, in a fresh way. I refamiliarized myself with the ferry system – it felt much safer than the subway and there was a stop close to my apartment – and used it to travel across the far reaches of New York, from Rockaway Beach to Staten Island to the Bronx. Along the way, I also satisfied my travel cravings by sampling the city’s best Palestinian, Sri Lankan, and Greek food. I recapped my adventures for Lonely Planet this year, and even took readers on the ferry with me in the accompanying video.