Experimental Travel

Experimental Travel

Today is World Book Day, at least in the United Kingdom. So I wanted to join my fellow NN Bloggers in our newest SynchroBlogging effort and wrote this post about science and books. I decided to write about the last book I bought – which was yesterday.

The book is in German and is called Italien – Kurzes Reisehandbuch von Karl Baedeker. The Baedeker series of travel guides (this one is about Italy) is still popular, but was started around 150 years ago. My book is the third edition and was printed in 1895. I will be traveling to the Amalfi Coast near Naples for my Easter holiday and I thought this would be a good opportunity to do some experimental tourism.

Experimental Travel is a playful new way of traveling that I learned about exactly one year ago on March 6 (another good reason for this post) when I bought this book in a bookstore in Auckland on my first vacation day in New Zealand. The books describes many travel experiments and laboratory results, including

  • Airport tourism. Spend 24 hours in an airport without getting on a plane
  • Confluence seeking. Visit ordered points such as exactly 35° S / 117° E using a GPS device
  • Mascot travel. Take pictures of your mascot outside famous landmarks, made famous by the French movie Amelie.

The experiment I wanted to do since reading this book was historic travel, i.e. traveling with the help of a guidebook from a different time. Italy is perfect for that, because my 1895 guidebook can still be very useful for many places I will be visiting. Pompei is a good example. I will try to write lab notes and report on the outcome of the experiment.

Copyright © 2008 Martin Fenner. Distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.