The Un-Discovered Islands
An Archipelago of Myths and Mysteries, Phantoms and Fakes
This guide to islands that have never existed examines 24 products of imagination, deception and human error. Some have emerged from myth, others as phantoms, plain mysteries, or fakes. The island of Frisland was claimed as British territory by Elizabeth I but turned out not to exist, and there were fraudulent inventions such as Phelipeaux, in Lake Superior. Illustrator Katie Scott adorns the text with mythical beasts and a variety of images.
Beyond the Map
Unruly Enclaves, Ghostly Places, Emerging Lands and Our Search for New Utopias
Not marked on any official map, new islands are emerging from the ocean, villages are disappearing beneath it, sea-forts declare independence and utopian communities are founded. This book explores 39 such extraordinary places. Here are the elusive Minkies in the English Channel, islands created in the South China Sea by a People’s Republic determined to expand its territory and influence, a ‘city without ground’, and the new Arctic being revealed as a result of global warming.
F Is for France
A Curious Cabinet of French Wonders
This alphabetical guide to the quirkier aspects of French life and culture ranges from absinthe to Zinedine Zidane, via cheese, garlic, sex and, of course, wine. It includes recipes (‘take a dozen frogs’ legs…), illustrations and curious facts rarely mentioned in regular guidebooks. Who knew, for example, that the French are addicted to McDonald’s, that the town of Châteauneuf-du-Pape has banned UFOs from landing, or that kangaroos roam the forests around Paris?
Roland and Sabrina Michaud have spent most of their lives exploring Africa and Asia. Organized by region, this account of their travels features nearly 500 colour photographs depicting the temples of India, Chinese monasteries, and the tents of Mongolian nomads. Their commentary explains the background to the images and describes the sense of shared humanity they felt with people whose lives were very different from their own.
The Book Smugglers of Timbuktu
The Quest for this Storied City and the Race to Save its Treasures
When the political chaos of 2012 allowed jihadists to surge across Mali, librarians and archivists secretly worked to hide thousands of Timbuktu’s precious ancient manuscripts. This book combines first-hand reporting of those modern events with the story of Timbuktu’s past as a medieval centre of learning and as the mysterious city that inspired decades of dangerous expeditions by Westerners in search of its fabled wealth.
The Great Explorers
The achievements of 40 of the world’s greatest explorers are celebrated in this collection of essays, from the epic maritime voyages of 500 years ago to Gertrude Bell’s travels in Mesopotamia, and from Nain Singh’s Tibetan journey to Jacques Cousteau’s deep-sea dives. Written by a team of distinguished travel writers, historians and broadcasters and extensively illustrated with historic images, the selection follows the pioneers on land, at sea, across deserts and polar ice, and into space.
Turkish Mosques & Tombs
At their peak in the 15th and 16th centuries, Ottoman architects created some of the most beautiful buildings in the world. The 125 photographs in this book offer breathtaking and surprising glimpses of some 20 mosques and tombs in Istanbul, Bursa and Edirne. Mary Cross charts the development of the Ottoman style, its unparalleled use of space, ornament and colour, and the role of the great architect Sinan and his pupils. A map, glossary and timeline of sultans are included.
The World's Most Exotic Railway Journeys
50 of the Most Dramatic, Scenic and Long-Distance Routes Across the Globe
Travel by railway, particularly on historic routes or to exotic locations, holds a romance that can't be matched. The 50 journeys traced in this book range from spectacular lines through the Andes or across the Khyber Pass, to travelling north from Helsinki to the Arctic and the famous Paris-to-Istanbul route of the Orient Express. Each report is based on first-hand experience and contains photographs, a route map, technical details of the engine and track, and train timetables.
The Crossing of Antarctica
Original Photographs from the Epic Journey that Fulfilled Shackleton's Dream
The first successful crossing of the Antarctic continent was completed in 1957–58 by a British and Commonwealth expedition led by Vivian Fuchs and Edmund Hillary. Like Shackleton's journey four decades earlier, the mission produced spectacular photographs, this time by George Lowe, recording the men and their 'sno-cat' vehicles in the icy landscape. Led by these images, some in colour, this book tells the story of the expedition, with contributions and reflections on Antarctica by leading polar experts including Ranulph Fiennes.
The Other Paris
An Illustrated Journey Through a City's Poor and Bohemian Past
Paris, the City of Lights, has always had its dark side: a city of the poor, the outcast, the criminal, the eccentric and the nonconformist. Illustrated with more then 300 historic images, this poetic essay takes the reader on a journey through its dance halls and whorehouses, its absinthe bars and hobo shelters, finding their traces in the bricks and stones of the modern city, reclaiming it from the haute bourgeoisie and the property speculators.
The First Circumnavigators
Unsung Heroes of the Age of Discovery
When Ferdinand Magellan set sail in 1519 to claim the Spice Islands for the King of Spain, his fleet included an international crew of family, friends, mariners, men-at-arms and slaves. Returning to Spain years later, three dozen of them had circumnavigated the globe, probably by accident. This book tells the story of the men accompanying Magellan and other illustrious expedition leaders on their voyages of discovery, and includes route maps and short biographies. Slightly off-mint.
Great Railway Journeys in Australia & New Zealand
Railways have been essential to the economic and social development of Australia and New Zealand, transporting commodities from inland farms and quarries, and linking distant cities. This volume charts 34 of the most rewarding rail journeys in the two countries, each illustrated with colour photographs and a map, from New Zealand’s TranzAlpine to Australia’s Spirit of the Outback. It traces the history of each line, gives technical details of the track, locomotives and carriages, and highlights features of interest along the route.
The World Around 1900
From Windsor Castle to the Great Wall of China, and from Japanese mussel gatherers to market traders in Algeria, this volume contains over 400 hand-tinted photographs in a survey of the world as it was in 1900. Jürgen Sorges’ introduction describes the tremendous pace of progress over the late 19th century and, with hindsight, sees in these wonderful images of wide open spaces, streets without cars, unspoilt mountainsides and low-rise cities a world ‘dancing on the edge of the abyss’.
The Jesuit Century
When the Jesuit missionary Antonio de Andrade set out from Agra in 1624, no European had visited Tibet and almost nothing was known of the country or its inhabitants. This book describes the travels and achievements of Andrade and four other Jesuits who made the long and perilous journey across difficult terrain and without maps. The final missionary is Ippolito Desideri, who stayed in Tibet from 1716 to 1721 and wrote a long and detailed account of the country.
Walking the Himalayas
For six months, Wood and his guides trekked along the foothills of the Himalayas, through Afghanistan, Kashmir and Nepal. His account of the 1,700-mile journey explores the region’s history, politics and the lives of its people, including yak-herders, separatist fighters, Buddhist monks and blood-drinking shamans. Off-mint.
Royal Cities of the Ancient Maya
From the 3rd to the 13th centuries, while Europe was deep in the Dark Ages, the Maya of Central America were creating astonishing buildings and sculptures, and charting the movements of the stars. This magnificent volume pairs an absorbing, authoritative history of their rise and fall, political intrigues and armed conflicts, with stunning photos of their surviving legacy, including the magnificent temples at Uxmal, Tikal, Palenque and Chichén Itzá, where their final flowering was extinguished by the Toltecs.
Biography of a Town
Nicholas Blincoe draws on his own long experience of living in Bethlehem as he lovingly describes the past and present of this city located between hills and desert and suffused with history and myth. Taking the reader through its stone streets, monasteries, aqueducts and orchards, he tells how it developed from the little town of Biblical times to the overcrowded city of today, whose inhabitants are caught up in the intractable complexities and contradictions of conflict and occupation.
The Longest Winter
Scott's Other Heroes
Captain Scott's Antarctic expedition of 1911–12 comprised a party focused on the Pole attempt and a second group detailed to undertake scientific research. This book recounts the ordeal of the six men of the second expedition, who were forced to survive the winter in an improvised ice cave before making a perilous journey back to base camp, where they were finally rescued nearly a year after they had been stranded.
Great American Railroad Journeys
Historical Companion to the BBC Series
In his popular TV travel series, Michael Portillo followed 19th-century railway guides, tracing the history and development of each destination since their original publication. This historical companion to the BBC series focuses on the railways of America, telling the story of the first pioneers, engineering mavericks and tycoons and how the railroad helped to shape the country before and after the Civil War, and into the 20th century.
The Haunted Beauty
With superb colour photographs, Julian Beecroft’s book is a pictorial tour of the world’s least visited places, inaccessible for reasons ranging from military secrecy and political paranoia to the sheer difficulty of getting there. Places covered include isolated monastic settlements such as Skellig Michael off the coast of Ireland; the closed cities of the former USSR; enclaves of elites and ghettoes of minorities; Cold War bunkers; and locations remote even today, such as the Berber towns of the Maghreb.
A Disenchanted Traveller's Guide
You don’t have to be Elvis Presley to take a walk down Lonely Street – the world, it seems, is full of lugubriously named places, from Disappointment Island in Australia to Misery (Elend) in Germany. Illustrated with hand-drawn maps, this quirky guidebook weaves a rich narrative of landscape, mythology and misadventure to explore the strange histories behind such tragic toponyms as No Place, County Durham; Massacre Island, Ontario; Suicide Forest in Japan and Doom Town, Nevada.
The World's Great River Journeys
50 Scenic Voyages Along the Waterways of 6 Continents
Travelling by river takes you to the heart of a city or country, while the leisurely pace allows time to appreciate the view. Arranged by continent, this volume presents 50 journeys along the world’s great rivers, including the Danube, the Rhine, the Nile, the Volga, the Amazon, the Hudson and the Ganges. Each trip is depicted on a map and illustrated with colour photographs, while a final section provides details of river cruise operators region by region.
Journey Through the Philippines
An archipelago of over 7,000 islands, the Philippines has natural environments ranging from coral reefs, through beaches, lakes and forests to active volcanoes, and urban landscapes that can be ultra-modern or old colonial Spanish. Nigel Hicks, a photographer and frequent visitor to the islands, describes a selection of 30 of the most beautiful and interesting places and, having tempted travellers, provides them with practical information on visiting the Philippines.
Where the Wild Winds Are
Walking Europe's Winds from the Pennines to Provence
In this unconventional travelogue, Nick Hunt is blown along by four of Europe’s fiercest winds: the Helm, which blasts the Pennines; the Bora, that scours the valleys of Slovenia; the ‘snow-eating’ Föhn of the Alps; and the Mistral of Provence. Along the way, he meets meteorologists, mountain men, sailors and shepherds, and learns how each of these named winds has its special characteristics, shaping lives, landscapes and communities.
The Conquest of Everest
Original Photographs from the Legendary First Ascent
On May 29 1953, Edmund Hillary and Tenzing Norgay stood on the summit of Everest: it was the first ascent of the mountain. Published in 2013 to mark the 60th anniversary of that achievement, this volume presents the astonishing photographs taken by George Lowe, one of Hillary’s climbing team in 1953 and an experienced photographer. The book contains over 160 photographs, of Everest and other peaks, along with written contributions from fellow climbers and a foreword by Hillary, written in 2007.
Knud Rasmussen's Fearless Journey into the Heart of The Arctic
Knud Rasmussen (1879–1933) was unique among Arctic explorers. Rejecting the elaborate equipment, extensive supplies and large teams employed by other expeditions, he travelled with a few Inuit assistants, learning from them how to live off the land. This first full-scale biography captures the Greenland-born ethnographer’s courage, charisma and sense of adventure, records his profound respect for Inuit culture, and charts his crowning achievement, a 20,000-mile odyssey by dog-sled from Greenland to Alaska.
Illuminating the Story Behind The Riddle of the Sands
Fascinated by Erskine Childers’s 1903 thriller, Maldwin Drummond spent years exploring its north-German coastal setting. Newly illustrated with Martyn Mackrill’s maritime drawings, his account blends travelogue and detection into its author’s life, which ended in front of an Irish firing-squad.
Beauty in Desolation
What is left when humanity has moved on? Across the world, ruined churches, derelict theatres, rusting fairgrounds, corroding factories, empty houses and dusty shops with nothing to sell are slowly being reclaimed by nature. The photographs and thought-provoking text in this book explore the eerie afterlife of buildings abandoned through war, natural disaster, or economic change. From California to Chernobyl, from Antarctica to Japan, these forgotten places embody the melancholy beauty of dereliction.
The Natural Heritage of the World
The Most Beautiful National Parks, Protected Areas and Biosphere Reserves on Earth
The world’s wild places offer a refuge for endangered species, an information bank for scientists, and a priceless gift to the human spirit. Illustrated with colour photographs, this book explores all 229 areas of natural beauty on UNESCO’s list of World Heritage Sites, from Lapland’s Arctic wastes to the Amazon rainforests, from the Great Barrier Reef to the reserves of East Africa, and from the primeval beech forests of the Carpathians to the natural parks of North America.
Then and Now
Pairing photographs taken during the Belle Époch, from around 1870 to 1910, with modern colour photographs of the same locations today, the authors look at how Paris buildings, monuments and streets have fared over the last century or so. Many of the older photographs were commissioned by the city authorities to record the redevelopment of Paris, and they show side streets and outlying districts as well as monumental buildings such as Notre Dame and the Panthéon.
A Traveller's Reader
Throughout its history, Madrid has attracted writers, artists and revolutionaries. This traveller’s reader brings the city to life through the letters, diaries, memoirs and novels of Casanova, Napoleon, Dumas, Trotsky, Hemingway, Dalí, Buñuel and many others. Selected by the eminent historian Hugh Thomas, these eyewitness accounts set five centuries of adventures and misadventures, Surrealist pranks and blood-soaked bullfights against the brooding backdrop of the Spanish capital.
A Traveller's Reader
Venice has inspired writers since the sixth century, when Cassiodorus described the lagoon-dwellers as living ‘like sea-birds in huts’. Selected by John Julius Norwich, this anthology includes the impressions of both inhabitants and visitors over the centuries. In letters, diaries, travelogues and verse, Byron, Casanova, Goethe, Wagner, Dickens, Ruskin, Henry James, Jan Morris and others reflect on the island city’s architecture, its atmosphere, music, ceremonies and people.
An Adventure History of Paris
Paris is one of the most alluring cities in the world; however well we know it, it never ceases to surprise. Reading this book, which retells its history through the lives of its inhabitants from Balzac to Baudelaire, Sartre to Sarkozy, is like stumbling upon a tiny restaurant frequented by eccentric locals. Robb is both a scholar and an adventurer, and from 250 years of urban history, he weaves a dazzling tapestry of fact and fantasy, memory and myth. Slightly off-mint.
A Traveller's History of Turkey
This Traveller's History is part of a series described by The Daily Telegraph as 'ideal before-you-go reading'. The concise, informative and useful history is for travellers who want a comprehensive view of the country's past and more detail than ordinary tourists' guides can provide. The book includes a chronology, gazetteer, a list of further reading and an index and is illustrated with maps, plans and line drawings.
A Cultural Guide
Ian Campbell Ross traces the history of Umbria from the Umbri people living there 1,000 years before Christ, to the present day, and offers an in-depth guide to the region’s cities and hill-towns, its ancient monuments and Renaissance art, and the glorious landscapes of ‘the green heart of Italy’.
Southern Cross to Pole Star
Tschiffely's Ride: 10,000 Miles in the Saddle from Argentina to Washington DC
In April 1925 an unassuming schoolteacher left Buenos Aires with two horses, to ride to New York. When he arrived two years later, he was greeted by a ticker-tape parade. His account of the journey, first published in 1933, tells how he traversed the Pampas, scaled the Andes, swam crocodile-infested rivers and escaped capture by revolutionaries. It has inspired generations of adventurers, including Robin Hanbury-Tenison, who provides the introduction to this new edition.
The Red Line
A Railway Journey Through the Cold War
In 1981, with the Cold War at its height, Christopher Knowles embarked on the first of 24 train journeys as a tour guide from London to Hong Kong. In this memoir, he recalls travelling on ordinary passenger services through East Berlin, Poland, the Soviet Union and China, describes his eccentric fellow-travellers, and recounts a series of bizarre and sometimes frightening experiences, including being mistaken for a Red Army deserter in Mongolia.
A Rich and Curious History of Pirates, Castaways and Madness
Daniel Defoe's famous castaway has been etched into the popular imagination for three centuries – but what of his island? This book identifies the real place – Juan Fernández Island in the South Pacific – and charts its colourful and often violent history. Drawing on voyage journals, maps and illustrations, Andrew Lambert brings to life the voices of visiting sailors, scientists, writers and artists from the early encounters of the 1500s to the naval battles of the First World War.
The Bazaars of Istanbul
Like the city itself, Istanbul's bazaar quarter is a meeting of opposites: East and West, ancient and modern, beautiful and chaotic. This richly illustrated book takes the reader on a journey through a world filled with fascinating history and people. Separate sections explore the various parts of the Bazaar District, trace their long traditions of craftsmanship, and celebrate their merchandise: food, spices, jewellery, carpets, textiles, ceramics, leatherwork, books... The volume includes 30 traditional Turkish recipes.
Athens is an enigma: its Acropolis was settled more than 7,000 years ago, but the city below is less than 200 years old. For much of the intervening period, it dropped off the map altogether. This cultural guide gives an in-depth insight into the city's identity, tracing its origins, development and social history, and providing a lively introduction to its art, architecture, music and film.
Symbols of China
A colourful and very accessible introduction to Chinese culture, this book comprises concise, well-illustrated and richly informative articles on aspects of the country ranging from natural wonders such as the magical Stone Forest to chop sticks. Beginning with cultural icons, including calligraphy, fengshui and the four auspicious creatures, the book has chapters covering architecture, festivals, daily life, arts and crafts, legends, famous historical figures and the performing arts.
By Endurance We Conquer
Ernest Shackleton was one of the greatest of polar explorers, calm and courageous in the face of adversity, who led his men to safety against all odds after their ship Endurance was crushed by ice. Yet his personal life was as chaotic as his public exploits were level-headed and assured. Drawing on extensive original research, this balanced and yet sympathetic biography explores the formative experiences that shaped a flawed hero.
Captain Cook and the Northwest Passage
Captain Cook is best known for his South Pacific voyages, but his exploration of the American Arctic in pursuit of the elusive Northwest Passage is arguably of equal importance. Published to accompany an exhibition at Anchorage, Alaska, this collection of essays by an international team of scholars assesses the impact of Cook’s journey on Russo-British relations and its legacy for later navigators. The text is lavishly illustrated with contemporary paintings, documents and maps, including Cook’s own charts of the Newfoundland coast.
Life On The Line
People of the Arctic Circle
The photographer Cristian Barnett travelled eastward from Alaska, through Canada, Greenland and the countries of Scandinavia, completing the Arctic Circle in Russia, and capturing images of life and work along 'the line where each year there is one day when the sun does not set, and one when the sun does not rise'. Accompanying the portfolio of 182 colour photographs are an interview in which Barnett talks about his northern journeys and an Alaskan resident's reflections on the Arctic year.
First used in medieval Venice and prized for its manoeuvrability, the gondola evolved over the centuries into today's sleek, asymmetrical black boat. Illustrated with reproductions of views of Venice, Donna Leon's little book offers 'a new way to enter into the life of the city' through the stories of the gondola, its history, its makers and its songs. A CD of gondoliers' barcarole accompanies the book, recorded by Il Pomo d'Oro, with a special track by Cecilia Bartoli.