The WHY of Travel?

The good gang at Rolf Potts’ Vagabonding highlighted WAIW? just the other day. My little quest got them thinking about the “why” of travel.

There are just about as many reasons to travel as there are travelers. It could be as simple as checking off sites on your “must-see” list, or it could be an emotional journey tracing family history in the mother country. The “why” of travel can be a complicated question, and for some it’s never fully answered.

The “why” for me has changed through the years.

First there was, “Why not? What the hell else would I do with my degree in Anthropology?”

Next there was, “I’ve got the last half of my uber-cheap ATW plane ticket left. Why not use it?” Followed by several other Why’s involving a Dracula obsession and some SCUBA gigs.

Now, the “why” is I enjoy writing about places and taking readers along for the ride.

Rolf Potts wrote the book on the “WHY” and “HOW” of travel – Vagabonding: An Uncommon Guide to the Art of Long-term World Travel. I suspect that Rolf’s current “why” travel is similar to my own. His writing are popping up all over the internet: a column for Yahoo! and recent reports for Slate.

He’s passed off a lot of the daily blogging responsibilities to his team of bloggers. They are doing a fine job of making the site interesting and useful to both travelers and writers alike. Note the permanent link over yonder.

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