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Slow travel is suddenly in fashion. Speed was once associated with success. Less so nowadays, as travelers realize that those who travel slow savor riches that those committed to speed simply miss. Getting to know one or two places properly can be immensely more satisfying than trying to pack ten European cities into a two week trip.
The essence of Slow Travel
A while back we published our manifesto for Slow Travel which appealed to the interests of a new generation of travelers who increasingly prioritize low impact tourism, engaging with locals and giving something back to the communities they visit. These are folks who are ever aware of their own carbon footprints.
Bradt Travel Guides
So three cheers for British publisher Bradt Travel Guides, which has launched a new series of guides devoted to Slow Travel, books that focus on the local and highlight how you might secure real insights into a country by exploring a limited area in detail.
Bradt has always been at the innovative end of the guidebook market, venturing to publish authoritative guides to areas of the world that receive only a tiny trickle of tourists. For travelers looking for good English-language guides to Belarus or Kosovo (or even, for that matter, to Eritrea or Kyrgyzstan), then Bradt is absolutely the market leader.
But they also have their own distinctive take on more frequented spots, and we are much impressed by a trio of books published earlier this month on very beautiful parts of England. They are Slow Norfolk and Suffolk by Laurence Mitchell, Slow North Yorkshire by Mike Bagshaw and Slow Devon and Exmoor by Hilary Bradt, who way back in the mid-1970s founded the company that still bears her name.
Slow Travel in England
Slow travel is a state of mind. It is about having the courage to give to places the time they deserve and not being enslaved by the need to travel farther and travel faster. England is of course ideally suited to this mode of travel and the three books that launch the new series dive off the main highways to take in country lanes and small villages.
Bradt say that more books in their Slow series are in the pipeline. US distribution is handled by Globe Pequot Press. The US editions of all three books will be published on July 13, 2010. Amazon is advertising them for about $16 apiece.