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The Worldwide Quest Blog

Enjoy our leaders’ reports from the field, our travellers’ stories and pictures, travel advice and staff picks from trips we’re working on.

"A Merry Christmas to every-body! A Happy New Year to all the world! Hallo here! Whoop! Hallo!"

By: Beverley Carr
Before Victoria's reign started in England in 1837, nobody in Britain had heard of Santa Claus or Christmas crackers. No Christmas cards were sent and most people did not have holidays from work. The wealth and technologies generated by the industrial revolution of the Victorian era changed the face of Christmas forever. Sentimental do-gooders like Charles Dickens wrote books like A Christmas Caro...

A Quick Guide to Port Wine: Facts We've Learned in Portugal's Douro Valley

By: Samantha Clark
Port is a sweet, red, fortified wine from Portugal's Douro Valley. It's the region’s climate and the soil type that help acquire its unique characteristics and its history dates back to the 17th-century, but we won't get into that now. Although Port wine is gaining a lot of popularity, it's still a surefire way to impress your guests with something different. Here are a few things we've lear...

That Golden Sun Still Shines: A San Francisco Love Story

By: Melanie Blake
What happens when you love a city but it doesn’t love you back? Local writers had gathered in San Francisco’s Make-Out Room, with its Saturday-Night-Fever-meets-natural-history-museum vibe, to read their stories about a city that, by many accounts, was losing its unique spirit. San Francisco has attracted adventurers, eccentrics, and strivers of all stripes since its days as the half-f...

Holiday Recipes from Around the Globe

By: Sara Feeny, Private Journeys Travel Planner
Treat your guests this holiday with some international favourites from Morocco, Argentina and South Africa! With my own gatherings with family and friends in mind, I've scoured the internet for recipes that are sure to impress. Sfenj are swoon-worthy Moroccan beignets. Though they are available in markets year round, their popularity skyrockets around Hanukkah time. Little sister to traditi...

Notes from the Field: Justin’s Scouting Trip to The Gambia

By: Justin Peter
It was with considerable anticipation that I went to The Gambia earlier this month on a reconnaissance tour. It was my second visit to this West African country. While The Gambia is tiny, I believed that I had missed much during my first visit in early 2016. On that quite leisurely visit, I remained in the ‘Lower Country’, the region closest to the Atlantic Coast – a region that ...

No Mere Discord of Flags

By: Melanie Blake
[This essay brings together Melanie Blake's reflections on the June 2016 tour The Pity of War and ideas she's been exploring as part of a larger project on literature about war. Learn more about Melanie's upcoming tour, Belgium & France: English Poets of WWI.]Down in the trench, it was easy to imagine the rain would keep falling forever and the swath of sky above would remain the same uniform ...