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You should have been there

You should have been there

By Mick Webb and Simon Calder
Simon Calder, travel correspondent of The Independent and former BBC producer, Mick Webb, discuss the world of travel and delight in travellers' tales.
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PODCAST 122 THE UPS ANDS DOWNS OF A TOUR MANAGER
Our guest Raquel tells us all about an essential but often unsung job in the travel industry-  the Tour Manager- revealing its upsides as well as its disadvantages. While Simon takes a trip back in time on the chrome-covered Amtrak express, The Wolverine, en route from Detroit to Chicago.     
27:34
August 15, 2022
A ROMAN SUMMER
Can you avoid the summer crowds in Italy?   How trustworthy are online travel agents?  And last but not least, the real reason why we didn't win a UK Podcast Award. With thanks to James Hill, Rebecca Halpern, Helen P and Jonny N. 
28:36
August 01, 2022
THE TROUBLE WITH DOVER
Simon wisely cycles to Dover's ferry port to report on the queues and the chaos that have beset holidaymakers. Who is to blame?  Plus, the winners of our competition to find the UK's best city for a summer break.    
27:49
July 24, 2022
PODCAST 119 SUMMER IN THE CITY
Which UK city has most attractions for the visitor? Join us for a discussion of hills, lanes, beaches, museums, architecture and other key features. Vote for your favourite at   https://twitter.com/SimonCalder/status/1548983503190114305?s=20&t=WyCR1_M_9ElJ5nx98ayfaA
27:56
July 18, 2022
TRAVEL IN TROUBLED TIMES
As the summer of chaos continues, with its many barriers to having an enjoyable holiday- flight cancellations, Covid concerns and Brexit effects, for starters- we discuss how to prepare for them and make your travels relatively relaxing.
29:33
July 11, 2022
PODCAST 117 WHAT ON EARTH IS PSYCHOGEOGRAPHY?
Jean McNeil, writer and academic, joins us on the roof terrace of London's Barbican Centre to talk Psychogeography. Discover what it is, where it comes from and how it can help you get a bit more from your travels. Plus, more on the great Bielfeld conspiracy!    
27:47
June 27, 2022
PODCAST 116 ENJOYING AIRPORT DELAYS
With the help of listeners' stories, we distil positivity from the unlikeliest of subjects-  delayed flights at airports.  
28:13
June 12, 2022
TRAVEL HIGHS AND TRAVEL LOWS
Follow Simon's week of travel reporting-from the chaos at UK's airports to the 9 euro deal of the century on German railways. And taking in the bizarre dangling tram of Wuppertal as well as plenty of technical challenges along the way.  Many thanks to Hywel Jones and Linda WS for their contributions.   
24:38
June 03, 2022
PODCAST 114 A PILOT'S VIEW OF CITIES
Our guest interviewee is airline pilot and travel writer, Mark Vanhoenacker. He talks about his new book, Imagine a City, recently published in the UK by Chatto and Windus and also shares some trade secrets. Would you have guessed that the first things he packs is a spork?   Thanks to Mark for his photo of Cairo by night
30:08
May 28, 2022
Podcast 113 PLATE WITH A VIEW: THE MAIN COURSE
Enjoy more of listener's  photos of great dishes with spectacular views. Find out which country topped the polls as your favourite location and see the photos @ https://www.flickr.com/gp/190976368@N06/Dc61Tp.    Thanks to all contributors for their photographs and to Scott Buckley for permission to his music track, Solstice
21:24
May 16, 2022
PODCAST 112 PLATE WITH A VIEW
We discover listeners' rooms with views (with Greece clocking up a majority) and serve up the first helping of plates with views. With thanks to everyone who sent in pictures to our twitter account @ youshouldhave BT, and to Nicky Gardner, co-author of Europe by Rail magazine, for sharing her favourite view from a train.   
27:08
May 10, 2022
PODCAST 111 ROOMS WITH VIEWS
Hear from listeners about the views that have inspired them and created travel memories both happy and sad. With special thanks to Julia Lo Bue-Said of The Advantage Travel Partnership, James Beagrie of Meon Valley Travel, Mary Poulton, Rebecca Halpern and everyone else who got in touch to share their rooms and their views via our twitter account, @youshouldhave BT 
23:24
May 02, 2022
PODCAST 110 THE WEIRD WORLD OF CAVES
Bats, birds and bones, not to mention churches and cheese. We enter the twilight zone of caverns and grottoes to discover much more than stalactites and stalagmites.
28:36
April 25, 2022
PODCAST 109 JOURNEYS WITH A MISSION
We discover ways of adding spice to your travels by undertaking special or unusual quests.  The "route of the dovecotes" in southern France, the grounded solar system in Zagreb and the Shakespeare trail in Stratford-upon-Avon are all on the itinerary. Thanks to Norman Smith, Tim Neale and Gary Knapper for taking part.     
27:57
April 19, 2022
PODCAST 108 TOURING THE BALTIC STATES
Simon takes the temperature of travel in Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania, three small states in the menacing shadow of Russia and Belarus. Even so, he enjoys the scenery, the hospitality and a surreal cultural tour in the Estonian town of Sillamäe. With thanks to his guide, Valentina, and the anti-war protestors of Tallinn. 
29:07
April 13, 2022
PODCAST 107 DO YOU GET WHAT YOU PAY FOR?
We discuss the real value of travelling with the help of listeners' descriptions of their most expensive holidays. But were these the most enjoyable ones? With special thanks to Jan Morris and Susan Latham   
28:27
April 04, 2022
PODCAST 106 GOOD TRIPS, BAD TRIPS
We discuss how drugs have influenced travel and tourism: Amsterdam, L.A, the Hippy Trail, the Green Tortoise and more recently, Breaking Bad and Ozark. Plus a health warning about medicines that are considered illegal drugs in some parts of the world. Many thanks to Tony Wheeler, co-founder of Lonely Planet publications, for his contribution. 
28:57
March 28, 2022
PODCAST 105 THE TROUBLE WITH LUGGAGE
We unpack the perennial travel problem of the incredible shrinking baggage allowance, with the help of listeners, previous contributors and the surrealist maestro, Marcel Duchamp. Thanks also to Rebecca Halpern, Sascha Heeney, Sarah Baxter and Tristan Gooley.  
28:47
March 21, 2022
PODCAST 104 RETURN TO THE COLD
We ponder the possible consequences of Putin's brutal war for travel and tourism, helped by Russian travel expert, Neil Taylor. Are there any parallels to be drawn with apartheid South Africa or Franco's Spain? And Simon recalls his recent visit to Chernobyl when it was, hard to believe now , a tourist attraction
25:59
March 14, 2022
PODCAST 103 QATAR'S WORLD CUP
We discover what awaits visitors to the first truly post-modern World Cup. As stadiums rise from the desert, Doha's beautiful new museum opens its doors to Simon, if he can manage to find the way in!  With thanks to Samuel and Daniel for joining in. 
29:38
March 07, 2022
PODCAST 102 THE FIRST TOURIST IN SYDNEY
Simon goes to Sydney, newly-opened to the world and, of course, eager to welcome tourists. He gets free vegemite at the airport, roams the city to discover what is and isn't open yet and enjoys some of the city's simpler pleasures: a tram ride, a sunset walk across the iconic bridge and a trek through the Sydney Harbour National Park, where the suburbs, the sea and the outback meet. Thanks to Jane and Jim O'Donnell for taking part.   
24:21
February 24, 2022
PODCAST 101 THE ROOM 101 OF TRAVEL
Join us in the room where travel fears and phobias are brutally revealed. There's talk of vertigo, malaria and, more controversially, the constant concern that your flight will actually arrive on time. Honestly!  And we continue the discussion of travel breakfasts by unravelling the mystery of the "Big Rolls" 
26:14
February 14, 2022
PODCAST 100 CELEBRATING OUR CENTURY
Unapologetic self congratulation is in order as we pick our favourite extracts from the 99 previous podcasts.  On the menu: the epitome of slow travel, Graham Greene's little known travelogue and Simon's embarrassing experience on the Balham train, along with the evocative sounds of Andean flutes and a choir of cicadas. Plus, some inspirational journeys involving the number 100, which include "the sociopath's camino de Santiago."  Also, thanks to Syna-Max of Freesound for the recording of applause. 
26:47
February 06, 2022
PODCAST 99 THE TRAVELLING BREAKFAST
This essential kick-start to the day's adventures or relaxation is often undervalued. From avocado on sourdough to stale bread and undrinkable coffee, we reminisce about breakfasts on the road and try and draw up an identikit menu of the ideal start to the travelling day. 
28:53
January 29, 2022
PODCAST 98 MUSEUMS: A SURVIVAL GUIDE
As the world of museums expands, quirkily, intriguingly and bafflingly, we discuss how to sort the wheat from the chaff and how to avoid a hangover from excessive viewing. Does Zagreb's Hangover Museum provide the answer? And we're joined by Jill Tsai, the founder of the Travel Things Museum (https://www.travelthingsmuseum.com)
29:40
January 24, 2022
PODCAST 97 THE PLACE TO BE IN 2022
We're joined by The Independent's Lucy Thackray for a discussion of this year's hot destinations and travel trends.  On the agenda: vegan hotels, work and playcations, sweat lodges or just a simple, old-fashioned Costa Rican sunset. And as the "Marble Arch Mound" closes down, what other ludicrous, white elephant tourist attractions does the world have to offer? 
28:52
January 17, 2022
PODCAST 96 THE GREAT CHRISTMAS QUIZ
Expect festive cheer and testing questions as Simon @simoncalder takes on Wanderlust Magazine's founding editor, Lyn Hughes @Wanderlust.Lyn See how you measure up against our travel experts and help decide the worthy winner! 
32:33
December 21, 2021
Podcast 95 TESTS, TRAINS AND TORTELLONI
We hear listeners' responses to the last few podcasts and try to answer their questions. On the varied menu: Covid testing, the ethics of elephant riding, the new European railway timetable, very wild swimming and learning to cook pasta dishes in Bologna. Many thanks to all contributors, not least our special guest, Doctor Silas. 
28:29
December 12, 2021
PODCAST 94 SUNSHINE STATE OF MIND
Simon goes to Florida and returns with tales of manatees, space missions and roseate spoonbills. There's more to the sunshine state than theme parks, although he did sample (and survive) the terrifying velociocoaster. With many thanks to Simon Veness, Susan Veness, Jenna Pierce from the Imperial Bar and former astronaut, Bruce Melnick. 
27:24
December 06, 2021
PODCAST 93 CHRISTMAS GETAWAYS
We hear from listeners about Christmases past and make plans for Christmases future, Omicron variant permitting.  Plus, expedition of the week and travel rants from the town of Morpeth. Many thanks to Lizzie and Norma for taking part. 
28:21
November 29, 2021
GOING WEST
SImon makes a pioneering trip across the Rainbow Bridge, which connects Canada with the the newly opened USA. Mick, meanwhile journeys to the hilly county of Dorset and scales its mightiest peak, risking family unity on the way. We compare notes and tensions.  With thanks to Steph, Silas and Aruja for taking part. The recording of pheasants comes courtesy of http://www.freesound.org/people/klankbeeld/
29:29
November 22, 2021
Podcast 91 THE WORLD IN A NUTSHELL
The World Travel Market has just taken place in London. It provides a cornucopia of new travel ideas and destinations, a riot of daft marketing slogans and no shortage of blah blah blah. We discover how much attention was paid to the climate concerns voiced at COP 26 and reveal why the Gulf States should be renamed the Golf States. 
28:44
November 07, 2021
OFF THE RED LIST
We take a whistle stop tour of five Latin American countries that have been freed from the shackles of Grant Shapps' red list. On the agenda: the world's best coffee, its highest waterfall and the place where longevity is a fact of life. Not to mention some truly romantic islands.
28:19
October 31, 2021
PODCAST 89 THE ARABIAN SIGHTS
Simon discovers more of Saudi Arabia's ancient wonders and gets an early peek at their grandiose plans for developing tourism. Meanwhile, at South London's Selhurst Park, the Saudi takeover of Newcastle United attracts criticism as well as visual creativity. Many thanks to Najla Drees and to Paul Oliver for taking part.   
23:01
October 25, 2021
PODCAST 88 NEWCASTLE to NEOM
Simon of Arabia discovers whether the Desert Kingdom and the home of the Geordies have anything in common, apart from the ownership of a well-known football club. We weigh the relative merits of camel tongues and saveloy dips and hear what the respective locals know about one another's countries.  Thanks to Christine, Fahad, Janet and Michael for taking part and being such good sports.
29:13
October 19, 2021
Podcast 87 NO TIME TO.... TRAVEL
As James Bond returns to the big screen, we map his journeys around the world and speculate on his favourite destination based on the 1000 locations that he has appeared in. How many are authentic? How many are location doubles? Simon joins us from one of these stand-ins- the Broadgate Tower in Bishopsgate, London.  
27:31
October 11, 2021
PODCAST 86 THE GREAT CAMEL-RIDE SCAM
Listeners share their experiences of travel con-tricks, old and new, in situ or online. Simon reports from Rotterdam's genre-bending art museum while Deirdre Swann tells us about a surprise encounter and an opportunity missed on her 64th birthday walk. Thanks to Deirdre, to Alan and to Ina Klaassen of The Depot.
28:33
October 04, 2021
PODCAST 85 SCAMS AND STINGS
From the old "three cup trick" to internet-age "fake villa" villainy, we reveal the many traps that lie in wait for the unwary tourist. Beware the "something-nasty-on your-bag-mate,"  the petrol pump counter you can't see and the "Thanksgiving Upgrade," which is just one of the  dodgy practices that bedevil the car rental business.
29:30
September 26, 2021
PODCAST 84: CHINA VERSUS JAPAN
The latest head-to head in our travel Olympics involves two mighty destinations from the Far East.  Which will prevail in events that feature capital cities, walls, snow monkeys, toilets and Simon's culinary take on the travel bug?  Many thanks to Dr Emily Thomas and Rebecca for their contributions and to the Terracotta Warriors for their unwitting participation.  
37:26
September 20, 2021
TRAVEL, WITH THE BEATLES
We embark on a magical mystery tour of places associated with the Fab Four, or named in their songs. As well as Penny Lane and Abbey Road, expect Blue Jays, paper bags and the windmill in East Sussex where Sir Paul has a recording studio.  
28:39
September 13, 2021
NO GO AREAS?
We debate the pros and cons of visiting countries with dodgy regimes. Is it ever justifiable? And if so, under what circumstances? Fortunately, we are guided through the minefield of ethical dilemmas by the philosopher and traveller, Dr Emily Thomas, of Durham University. Thanks also to Luis Cuellar from Freeimages for the photo
29:34
August 29, 2021
ZANTE OR SHETLAND?
Enjoy our latest head-to-head: Scottish Island versus Greek Island. Which is the better holiday destination? Simon is on location in Lerwick, while Zante's champion is Julia Lo Bue-Said, Chief Executive Officer of the Advantage Travel Partnership
30:12
August 23, 2021
PODCAST 80 TRAVEL OLYMPICS
We showcase listeners' suggestions for travelling situations that warrant inclusion in our TRAVEL OLYMPICS. Plus a head to head contest between Zimbabawe and Zambia for the "worth visiting" medal. 
29:56
August 16, 2021
WHERE IN THE WORLD CAN WE GO?
With Simon reporting live from sunny St Pancras station, we attempt to navigate the latest twists and turns in the government's controversial "traffic light" travel scheme. And it's Slovenia (colourful capital: Ljubljana ) versus Slovakia (world's most castles!) in our new Olympic travel competition.  
28:04
August 09, 2021
THE TRIP THAT CHANGED ME
This edition is all about listener's formative travel experiences- from a first distant view of the Himalayas to a wild camping trip to Pembrokeshire. Special thanks are due to Rebecca and to Dr John Mason. 
26:19
August 01, 2021
JOURNEY INTO SPACE
Never mind those space billionaires, we are joined by a much more knowledgeable guest to talk about eclipses, meteor showers, Northern Lights and other heavenly phenomena. Dr John Mason MBE, astronomer extraordinaire, discusses what to look out for and and where best to see it. You can find out more about his work by searching online for the "South Downs Planetarium"
28:31
July 25, 2021
FIRST STEPS ABROAD
What was your first trip aboard like? Where did you go? Did anything amazing happen? Simon and Mick compare their first times and their memories, but we want to know about your experiences. Do get in touch by audio message on Anchor.fm/youshouldhavebeenthere or via Twitter: @youshouldhaveBt
22:42
July 18, 2021
GOING UNDERGROUND
We discuss the sometimes surprising delights of the world's underground railway systems and make a spurious case for claiming Gareth Southgate as one of our own.  
26:54
July 11, 2021
DUE DILIGENCE: PREPARING TO TRAVEL ABROAD
We attempt to hack our way through the red tape and labyrinthine protocols surrounding foreign travel. Fortunately we are joined by an expert guide, Julia Lo Bue-Said, who is chief executive of Advantage Travel Partnership-the UK's largest group of independent travel agents.  Follow Julia on Twitter at @jlo_said 
29:34
July 04, 2021
THE PERFECT SQUARE
The heart of any self-respecting town or city is its square. So which is the world's best square, what are the essential ingredients for a good one and why are we in the UK so bad at them? Simon offers his opinions from the not very renowned Kings Cross Square in London though I thought the Piazza del Duomo in Pisa was a bit more photogenic!  
29:40
June 28, 2021
RUSSIA: BIG BUT IS IT BEAUTIFUL?
Mick's prejudices about the world's largest country are robustly challenged by Simon and the travel writer and photographer, Frances Linzee Gordon. Enjoy her tales of smiling policemen, two-way mirrors and learning to fire a Kalashnikov.
28:42
June 13, 2021
SMALL PLEASURES: VISITING EUROPE'S MICROSTATES
Join Simon in Gibraltar as he meets the residents and tries to avoid the light-fingered macaque monkeys. The famous "Rock" is just one of the tiny states that dot the map of Europe. Cleo Paskal, Associate Fellow of Chatham House kindly shares her research passion for these Microstates and we revisit a journey to Andorra.  
30:07
June 06, 2021
INSIDE THE RAINFOREST
A gorilla mother and baby are among the most wonderful sights that a rainforest can provide. But there are also snakes, scorpions and mosquitoes that you would prefer not to come across. We get inside nature's miraculous but disappearing hot houses with the help of Joe Taylor and Silas Webb. Thanks are also due to Ernesto, the Colombian guide who helped Simon and me across a small part of the treacherous Darien Gap. The website with details of our very own UK temperate rainforests is https://lostrainforestsofengland.org/  
31:28
May 30, 2021
FIRST FLIGHT TO FARO......
....... and of course Simon was on it, taking the Covid tests and checking out sunny Algarve as the UK's oldest ally gets a green light from the government. But how complicated is it to get there and what kind of holiday experience awaits the intrepid visitor to Portugal?  Many thanks to Paul Goldstein for joining in the Faro fun.   
30:12
May 19, 2021
AROUND THE WORLD IN 80 DELAYS
Taking our cue from the famous novel by Jules Verne, we hear travellers' tales of trials and tribulations with some unexpected bonuses. A free hotel stay in Antigua can't be bad, can it? Thanks to Carolyn Pearson, Dr Claire Corkhill and David Else for their stories and to everyone who kindly sent their tales of delay via Twitter. 
24:25
May 09, 2021
TRAVEL DESTINATION ROULETTE
We shed light on the government's forthcoming strategy for foreign travel with the help of Carolyn Pearson. Her company, Maiden Voyage, advises business travellers on safety and well-being (maiden-voyage.com). An unexpected accompaniment is provided by some dogs that Simon befriended outside Swindon Railway Station. 
25:18
May 02, 2021
TRAVEL'S NUCLEAR OPTION
35 years since the melt-down of Chernobyl's nuclear reactor, the site of the catastrophe has become a top tourist attraction. Nuclear scientist, Dr Claire Corkhill, joins us to talk about "dark tourism" and the ethics of visiting places like this. Claire has recently taken part in the documentary "Russia versus the World" which you can see on My5. 
29:19
April 25, 2021
TWINNING WAYS
We investigate the twinning movement, looking back at some of the more interesting and bizarre connections that it has thrown up. Did you know, for instance, that one English town has chosen Narnia as a partner? We'd love to receive your ideas for any new kinds of twinning via twitter, @youshouldhaveBt
25:45
April 19, 2021
LIES, DAMN LIES AND HOTEL RATINGS
As self-catering accommodation re-opens, we discuss the widespread problem of fake reviews with the guidebook writer and editor, David Else.    He highlights some scams and reveals the tricks of the professional reviewer's trade. Find his work at www.davidelse.com
30:24
April 11, 2021
TRIPS THAT NEVER WERE
We hear from listeners about all the journeys that were planned but not made during the past 12 months, while Simon makes a "minimised" trip to the seaside. Many thanks to Poppy, Daisy and Jamie for their readings. Also to Christian Bjoerklund for his music track "Hallon" 
29:01
April 06, 2021
ON THE ROAD AGAIN!
Simon reports from the first bus to leave Manchester for London on the 29th March, the day that travel restrictions were cautiously relaxed. Many thanks to Dave the driver, fellow-passenger, Sam Serrano, as well as listener Mick for his message. 
23:48
March 30, 2021
EASTER ESCAPES
We talk about the best places to visit at this time of year and answer that perennial question.  No, not when is Easter, but WHERE is Easter? Do get in touch with us on Twitter:  @youshouldhaveBT
29:32
March 22, 2021
DECIPHERING BORIS'S ROAD MAP
Cathy Adams of The Independent joins us to plot a route through the 68 page document that will lead us towards a day out in Brighton and the promise of far-off beaches. Or will it?  We assess the obstacles that await on the road ahead. Cathy on twitter is Cathy@catman and we are @youshouldhaveBt. Many thanks, too, to Glyn Jones and to Poppy
25:11
March 15, 2021
THINKING DEEPLY ABOUT TRAVEL
We talk to Emily Thomas about her recent book, which explores most entertainingly what philosophers have said about travel.  Descartes, for instance, claimed to have gained most of his knowledge from "the great book of the world". Emily's book, The Meaning of Travel, is published by Oxford University Press.  
25:13
March 10, 2021
CONFESSIONS OF A TOUR GUIDE
Find out what it's like to be a top cultural tour guide with our guest, James Hill. The highs, the lows and what goes on behind the scenes, plus some terms you might not have come across before-we certainly hadn't : "lollipops" and "shamrockisation".  James' tours can be found at www.ciceroni.co.uk
29:49
February 26, 2021
VAMOS A LA PLAYA
As the prospect of a Spanish holiday draws a little closer Lola Culsán and John Weller reveal how to avoid the seaside crowds. Their new book, Hidden Beaches: Spain, is the fruit of an epic, covid-interrupted journey round the whole coast of Spain in a campervan. Get a 20% discount with the code, hiddenbeach21, from www.wildthingspublishing.com/product/hidden-beaches-spain-book/
28:55
February 23, 2021
SAFETY IN NUMBERS
Today we're talking about group travel with Joe Fallon, founder of the company TruTravels.  From steamy Thailand he tells us how he set up his firm and about his hopes for it in an uncertain future. We also discuss what group travel can offer that independent travel can't!  Joe's company website is trutravels.com.  Contact us at   twitter.com/YouShouldHaveBt
29:56
February 14, 2021
ROMANCE ON THE ROAD
In honour of Valentine's Day, our subject is romantic destinations and locations. They range from heart-shaped islands to a windowless bar in Krakow. We'd love to hear your own stories of travel romance via Twitter- @you should have BT
26:54
February 07, 2021
THE MYSTIQUE OF MUSTIQUE
Journalist Claire Wrathall helps us peek behind the plantation shutters of Mustique's exclusive villas and explains what it's like to visit this most exclusive of islands.  
30:21
February 02, 2021
THE ALLURE OF AUSTRALIA
Simon reveals his love of Quokkas,  while Mick's sceptical view of Australia's charms is well and truly challenged by Oz aficionados, Charlotte Hindle and Peter Webb.
25:28
January 24, 2021
WHEN A BREAKDOWN IMPROVES A JOURNEY
There's nothing quite like a mechanical breakdown to disrupt your travel plans.  But sometimes it can make rather than break your holiday, as we hear from Steph Nelms and Alec Webb. Meanwhile  the President of the AA, Edmund King gives some timely advice on how to avoid mechanical mayhem. Do send your travel tales to us via Twitter  @youshould haveB1
26:30
January 17, 2021
THE BEST EVER TRAVEL FILM
To help draw up a shortlist of worthy contenders, we are joined by Sarah Baxter, Charlotte Hindle, Alec Webb and Tony Wheeler.  Would you believe that someone proposed The Sound of Music?  Do send us your own suggestions to our new Twitter destination, @youshouldhavebe1
29:39
January 10, 2021
PROSPECTS FOR TRAVEL 2021
What does this New Year have in store for tethered travellers?  And If we are allowed to get away, how much of the travel industry will still be functioning?  Our guest this week, having an educated guess at what might happen, is Tony Wheeler, co-founder of Lonely Planet guidebooks. Find out about Tony and his travels at  www.tonywheeler.com.au 
28:01
January 02, 2021
THE WORLD-BEATING CHRISTMAS TRAVEL QUIZ
SImon goes head to head with Lyn Hughes, Editor in Chief of Wanderlust magazine, over ten mind-bending rounds. Can you outquiz them? 
43:60
December 21, 2020
TRANS EUROPE EXPRESS
With acknowledgements to Kratftwerk, we preview the new European Rail Timetable in the expert company of Nicky Gardner and Susanne Kries. Prepare for the light at the end of the tunnel with their top train tips. Find details of their publications at  www.hiddeneurope.co.uk/
29:25
December 13, 2020
LONG DISTANCE WALKS
Where are the most enjoyable long walks and what's the best way to tackle them?  Our guest this week is Sarah Baxter, travel writer, walker and author of  " A History of the World in 500 Walks" . Her website is sarahbtravel.wordpress.com
29:42
November 29, 2020
TRAVEL BUGS
We discuss how to travel healthily with Sascha Heeney. She 's not only a nurse but also a travel guide with Lupine travel (lupinetravel.co.uk) which specialises in tours to some of the world's hardest to reach destinations. Altitude sickness, malaria, air pollution water, food, insurance, it's all here! 
28:14
November 21, 2020
THE LOST ART OF NATURAL NAVIGATION
 Discover how the humble stinging nettle can help you find your way to a village pub with our guest, Tristan Gooley.  He's an expert in the lost and often fascinating art of navigating by the sun, stars, clouds, trees, even satellite dishes. Details of his ideas and his books are available on naturalnavigator.com
29:15
November 15, 2020
EVERY PHOTO TELLS A STORY?
It's not just what you photograph but the context in which you take it.  Our guests today are travel writer and adventurer, Frances Linzee Gordon, and Mario Cavalli who is a film maker and photographer. Enjoy some of his work at https://mario-cavalli-images.squarespace.com/.  And, https://mario-cavalli-images.squarespace.com/-jodhpur-the-blue-city-holi.  See our photos at  http://bit.ly/YouShouldHaveBeenThere
29:11
November 08, 2020
ARE YOU A TOURIST OR A TRAVELLER?
Helped by travel writer and adventurer, Frances Linzee Gordon, we discuss the contentious distinction between the words "traveller" and "tourist".   Would you ever find a true traveller in an all-inclusive resort?  Or a tourist on a dodgy local bus? 
28:59
November 02, 2020
STRANGE BREWS
We recall, or at least try to, some of the oddest drinks we've encountered during our travels and attempt to describe their flavours and their effects!
27:40
October 26, 2020
Q IS FOR QUARANTINE
Simon and Mick are joined by travel journalist, Helen Coffey to ponder some of quarantine's big questions. Where was it first practised, how do you cope with being quarantined and hardest of all, what are the UK's current restrictions? 
27:54
October 19, 2020
TIERS FOR SOUVENIRS
Souvenirs come in all shapes and sizes and, of course, in various shades of naffness.  We compare our own favourites and talk to Julia Ferguson, a Business Psychologist, about the value that we place on these symbols of abroad. 
29:01
October 12, 2020
THE CYCLING REVOLUTION?
Simon and MIck are joined by Anna Hughes, Director of FlightFree UK, co-author of Peaky Climbers and a champion of cycling. They share the pleasures (and pains)  of cycling and wonder what could be done to make getting on your bike an easier experience in the UK. 
29:06
October 04, 2020
THE MODERN-DAY PILGRIM
We hear from people who have walked the Camino de Santiago about the joy and pain they have experienced, and muse on the similarities between tourism and pilgrimages. Many thanks to Debra, Richard and Louise for their contributions
30:08
September 28, 2020
GETTING AWAY FROM IT ALL
Simon and Mick compare notes about their respective attempts to enjoy some time off. But was it better to be scaling Holland's highest peak or to be walking through a road-free valley on the way to a pint of Sussex ale? Well, we'll let you decide!
27:10
September 20, 2020
YOU SHOULD HAVE BEEN THREE
A typing error leads Mick and Simon to wonder about the desirability of travelling in threes. When is three a better number of people than the standard two?  The answer seems to be - when you're in a boat with a dog, when you're up a snowy mountain or when you're flying on a low-cost Spanish airline on Valentine's day!  
26:01
September 06, 2020
EMBARRASSING TRAVEL MOMENTS
Travelling and embarrassment seem to go hand in glove.  Simon and Mick wonder whether it's an essential part of being a tourist and also, if we are often the authors of our own discomfort, not to mention that of our children. The tale  of the false beards is a case in point.  Thanks are due to Poppy and Daisy Calder for dishing the dirt on their dad! 
28:22
August 30, 2020
RESPONSIBLE TRAVEL
Are you a responsible traveller?   See if you measure up to the standards proposed by some of the movement's new gurus, and enjoy the poetic pledge created by the Tourist Office of Finland.  Thanks to Anna Hughes of Flight Free UK for her interview  and to  Aaron Burden@unsplash for his photo.
28:20
August 24, 2020
HIGH PLACES
What is that makes us stretch every sinew to get to the top of things? Simon and Mick's favourite high places include the Blackpool Tower, Buenos Aires' Barolo Tower, Mount Aconcagua, also in Argentina, and The Cirque de Gavarnie in the French Pyrenees. Joining them are Silas Webb, who scaled Mount Kilimanjaro and Ed Douglas, whose book, "Himalaya, a human history" is published on the 27th August by Vintage-price £25. Thanks are also due to Christian Bjoerklund for letting us use his musical track, Hallon. 
30:58
August 18, 2020
TRAVEL WIT AND WISDOM
The act of travelling from one place to another may seem a simple thing. But it has spawned  a vast number of sayings and reflections. Simon and Mick discuss the wittiest, wisest, pithiest and most pathetic of them. 
28:01
August 11, 2020
SURE WAS GLAD TO GET OUT OF THERE ALIVE
Mick and Simon relive some of the travel situations which they're only too pleased to have survived.  Plus a visit to a pub in Southampton which is proud to carry the name of that ill-starred ship, The Titanic.  Thanks to Martin and Michelle for their contributions and to www.fesliyanstudios.com, for the music. 
28:05
August 04, 2020
THE NEW NORMAL
What's in store for this summer's holidaymakers in the UK?  What's open, what needs booking and when do you need to take your own toilet with you? Plus an insight into the mysteries of Romney Marshes and the challenge of cycling from London to Land's End. Thanks to Rob, Silas, Karen, Jan and Vanessa. 
25:52
July 27, 2020
TAKING A CHANCE ON A FOREIGN HOLIDAY
Simon unveils his five pillars of advice on how to avoid some of the nastier travel surprises that are emerging in the wake of the pandemic.  We're grateful to f_ilippo @Freesound for the casino recording  
28:36
July 20, 2020
TRAVELLING LIGHT
Reflections on the subject, a bit of advice on how to do it and a look back at what some eccentric travellers carried with them on their journeys. You can see the painting "Waiting for a train" @ https://www.nzmuseums.co.nz/collections/3243/objects/35106/waiting-for-the-train-willesden-junction
28:42
July 14, 2020
NEW FRONTIERS
Mick and Simon try to make sense of the bewildering advice about where we can and can't  go on our holidays. They also ponder the new pop-up enclaves created by Coronavirus, adding to the historical oddities like Llívia, a small piece of Spain entirely surrounded by France. 
28:24
July 06, 2020
CARRY ON CAMPING
Simon and Mick discuss a tentative new dawn for camping, and swap tales of their own intense experiences under canvas.  Music: Solstice by Scott Buckley 
28:30
June 29, 2020
SLOW TRAVEL
Is slow travel something we should all strive for, or is it just an exercise in marketing?  Simon and Mick investigate, helped by Gina Waggott, Anna Hughes, Alec Webb, Nicky Gardner, Graham Hoyland and James Hill. 
30:59
June 22, 2020
TRAVELLING SAFELY, WEIGHING UP RISKS
Mick and Simon discuss travel risks and how to manage them. Diseases, snakes and hippos all feature, along with selfies, local police and rip tides. For information about these, go to bit.ly/RipSafe. Thanks to Charlotte for her wise words. 
28:32
June 09, 2020
GREAT EXPEDITIONS: BARNARD CASTLE AND BEYOND
What makes a trip or a holiday into an expedition? Does it need a key objective, sponsorship or just some specialised kit?    Simon and Mick talk machetes and mountain meals, as well as catching up on the latest Covid19  travel news   
30:53
June 01, 2020
Brief Encounters
The search for the perfect, fleeting holiday experience takes in the Kentish North Downs, Kalingrad Oblast and Carnforth railway station. With the briefest of stops at Dublin airport and Newport Pagnell Motorway Services.   The recording of the steam train leaving Moor Street station was made by Keith Burnett 
28:59
May 25, 2020
Travel with social distancing
What's the current guidance and what will await us, when and if we do get away?  Simon unveils his five "tests " for prospective travellers while Mick continues his worldwide search for Gerald Bernstein.                                                                                                                                           We'd like to thank Daisy and Poppy for their help.                                                                                                                                                                          You can read the article from the New England Journal of Medicine  at :   https://www.nejm.org/doi/full/10.1056/NEJMoa031349
29:22
May 18, 2020
The Bits Awards
Enjoy the best bits from our first 20 podcasts.  Among the categories: best travel moment, best lock down story and best breakfast. 
31:07
May 11, 2020
The ideal travelling companion
Who would you most like to travel with on a long trip?  Someone who get things organised, can carry most of the kit, tells a good joke..........?  Thanks to Charlotte and Alec for their contributions.  
29:06
May 04, 2020
School Journeys
What were your journeys to school like? Long, uneventful, exciting, dangerous.....?  Enjoy the experiences of some of our listeners.  We'd like to thank Steph, Camilla, Silas, Lynette, Carol, Daisy and Poppy for their contributions. And the website we mentioned is www.boredpanda.com/dangerous-journey-to-school 
28:18
April 27, 2020
Poetry in motion
Travel and journeys have inspired some great lines and uplifting verses. But, how many of our chosen poems do you know ? 
27:02
April 18, 2020
The World's Top Travel Icon
Which famous site has come out top in our twitter poll?  Will it be a wonder of nature or an attraction created by us humans?   We also discuss Robert Louis Stevenson's book: Travels with a donkey in the Cévennes The musical fanfare,  The Curtain Rises, was composed by Kevin Macleod (incompetcech.com)  
27:40
April 13, 2020
Armchair Travel
Simon and I exchange ways of keeping the flame of travel alive, without going anywhere. Expect entertaining books, silly games and a brief appearance from the president of The AA, Edmund King.  The book "Journey round my room" is available, free, at gutenberg.org. 
30:18
April 06, 2020
Travel beyond the pandemic
Travel and tourism will be transformed. Will our attitudes have to change too? 
27:16
March 30, 2020
Coronavirus versus the Travel Bug
We ponder the future direction of travel and suggest some ways of combatting cabin fever.
27:45
March 22, 2020
Faking it
Simon and Mick make  a few personal confessions and reveal some of travel's great fakes and fakers.  They award the title of the greatest travel impostor to Georges Psalmanazar (not his real name), native of Formosa (well, not exactly) who hoodwinked  London society in the eighteenth century. 
29:49
March 09, 2020
BAYWATCH
All about the world's bays: the most beautiful, the saddest and those that have left their mark on history.  Some, like Montenegro's Bay of Kotor even have their own islands.   
30:45
February 20, 2020
Getting to know the Stans
Discover the five mysterious and intriguing countries of Central Asia with names that all end in  ........ stan. 
34:07
February 17, 2020
The Ups and Downs of a Travel Writer
Simon Calder and Mick Webb share views on working as travel writers- the rewards, the challenges and how to do it well.
28:46
February 04, 2020
Travel in the 2020's
The Great Green Wall,  electric planes, vacuum trains....   Simon Calder and Mick Webb look forward to the next decade of travel and what it might bring.  Electronic music is from the track "Hallon"  by Christian Bjoerklund on the album Skapmat. 
29:29
January 17, 2020
Tales from the A23
Every road, like every picture, has a story to tell. The A23, on its route between London and Brighton, has seen some of the best and worst of travel. Mick Webb and Simon Calder uncover tales of highwaymen, princely misdemeanours and old crocks (cars not them). They are joined by Rachel Birch and Beverley Keech    
30:32
January 14, 2020
Can you fly with a clear conscience?
Simon Calder and Mick Webb visit the UK's Gatwick Airport to discuss the carbon impact of flying
30:49
December 16, 2019
Places glimpsed
Simon Calder and Mick Webb create an alternative bucket list of places they've glimpsed from cars, planes and buses, and which they would love to return to one day.  Like this Greek village in the Peloponnese. 
28:32
November 28, 2019
Travelling hopefully.......
...............Is it better than arriving?   SImon Calder and Mick Webb discuss Robert Louis Stevenson's famous quotation.  And they trek hopefully through the vast expanses of the World Travel Market, playing Crazy Golf, Abu Dhabi style, and collecting freebies, daft marketing slogans and inspirational ideas about  tourism.
28:37
November 27, 2019
When in Rome........
........       should you do as the Romans or behave like a tourist? And how about in places like Dohar, Dubai or Australia's Ayres Rock?  
27:42
November 06, 2019
Lost
Simon and Mick have made getting lost into an art form. They recall their most memorable experiences and discuss various ways to avoid losing the plot.  Do send us your own stories via the audio link
29:18
October 24, 2019
Borders
Crossing frontiers is a crucial part of the travelling experience.  It can be time-consuming,worrying, frightening, often fascinating and sometimes downright entertaining .   In this Podcast, travel journalists, Simon Calder and Mick Webb, who have travelled far and wide, reflect on the borders they have crossed. Like the unforgettable night  spent trying to convince the Panamanian soldiers on the frontier between Colombia and Panama that they were bona fide tourists.  Far from any road, in the thick rainforest of the Darien Gap, where most travellers were smugglers, Colombian guerrillas or paramilitaries, it took some doing. The photo shows a border marker ( and Simon). Some remote border crossings seem to have very little serious connection with monitoring comings and goings, others, ironically, have become tourist attractions in their own right: Simon discusses the origins of the name and his own experience of crossing during the Cold War. And sometimes you get the feeling that it’s the border-crossing travellers who are providing the entertainment for the frontier officials.  Do send us your own tales of frontier experiences- the good, the bad and the ugly.   
28:13
October 18, 2019