This is the December 2018 issue


Enormous carved walls and the doorless entrance dwarf visitors to the Temple of Horus at Edfu.
Cruising the Nile on a customized tour of Egypt’s magnificent sites
By Debi Shank
Appears on Page 6
The Golden Pavilion in Kyoto.
Japan — an independent journey
By Lucy Fleming
Appears on Page 20
The facade of Kylemore Abbey.
Enchanted by the Emerald Isle on a tour of western Ireland
By Cindy Palmer
Appears on Page 42

Travelers' Intercom

Dimmuborgir “Dark Castles” lava formation on the east side of Lake Mývatn. Photos by Marcia Reynolds
Lake Mývatn, Iceland
By Marcia Reynolds
Appears on Page 14
Google Maps’ GPS (at the very bottom, it says “297 km 11:46 AM”) versus the car’s GPS (“Arrival 11:58, 299km”). Photo by Joe Whitehouse
Tips for driving in Japan
By Joe Whitehouse
Appears on Page 16
Long lines upon departing Aruba
By John Wion
Appears on Page 27
Our first stop for sampling wine, cheese and meats. Photo by Norman Dailey
Day tours canceled in Italy
By Norman Dailey
Appears on Page 28
Assessing hotels on an OAT Baltics tour
By Florence Drake
Appears on Page 30
Impressions from Germany
By Philip A. Shart
Appears on Page 32
Panorama of the walled city of Mdina. Photos by Theodore Liebersfeld
Much of Malta in 4 days
By Theodore Liebersfeld
Appears on Page 32
Abdellah (center front, in hat and vest) in Meknes' Sunday market. Photo by Stephen Addison
Guide for Moroccan Jewish heritage
By Stephen Addison
Appears on Page 36
‘Fantastic guide’ in Bulgaria
By Sabina Joyce
Appears on Page 36
Edna R.S. Alvarez in front of one of the stones at Avebury.
Avebury henge and stone circles
By Edna R.S. Alvarez
Appears on Page 37
Awaiting the opera “Carmen” at the Verona Arena. Photo by Irina Stroup
Opera at Verona Arena
By Irina Stroup
Appears on Page 46
TrevisoCarService, Italy
By Marilyn Hill
Appears on Page 47
Kangaroo Island
By Jackie Chase
Appears on Page 47

Calling All Readers!

Ireland’s narrow Wild Atlantic Way is “No Country for Old Men.” Photo and caption by Ron Carlson
Senior drivers of rental cars
Appears on Page 38

Calling All Readers! Call for Submissions

Solos and Assigned-seating Dining on Ships
Appears on Page 17
Ethnobotanical culture outside the US
By Mary Light
Appears on Page 59


To imagine you’re one of Bath’s upper crust, cruise along the Circus, stately buildings that evoke the wealth and gentility of the town’s glory days. <i>CREDIT: Cameron Hewitt, Rick Steves’ Europe.</i>
Bath's easy urban delights
Rick Steves' Europe Supplemental

By Rick Steves

In France, galettes are an important part of the Epiphany celebration.
Joyeux Noel: How France celebrates Christmas
Rick Steves' Europe Supplemental

By Rick Steves

Palermo entertains travelers with striking architecture, vivid street life, a cosmopolitan vibe and a fun-loving energy.
Sicilian surprises in Palermo
Rick Steves' Europe Supplemental

By Rick Steves

Guided food tours provide thoughtful explanations of the authentic foods we travel so far to taste.
Specialized tours enrich travel
Rick Steves' Europe Supplemental

By Rick Steves

Ronda is the birthplace of modern bullfighting and home to a venerable bullring that dates to 1785.
Experiencing the soul of Spain in Andalucía's hill towns
Rick Steves' Europe Supplemental

By Rick Steves

A Christmas market scene in Prague, Czechia, with the Old Town Hall in the background.
EU compensates air passengers. Cruise ship conscripted in search. Cape Town drought eased.
Boarding Pass

By David Tykol
Appears on Page 2
Choosing luggage and packing light
The Mindful Traveler

By Mark Gallo
Appears on Page 49
Narrow paths connect “rooms” in the Inner Garden, this one dedicated to foliage in shades of green.
The Crystal Garden in Wales
The Garden Path

By Yvonne Michie Horn
Appears on Page 51
Do your research on the big aggregator sites, but then book directly with a family-run hotel — like this one in Prague — for a glimpse into the local culture. Photos by Dominic Arizona Bonuccelli
Book smart when looking for lodging
Rick Steves' Europe

By Rick Steves
Appears on Page 53
The Geografile
The Geografile

By Bryan Henry
Appears on Page 53
The Grand Tomb at Hili Archaeological Park in Abu Dhabi. Photos by Julie Skurdenis
Hili — Bronze Age settlement in Abu Dhabi
Focus on Archaeology

By Julie Skurdenis
Appears on Page 54

Funniest Thing

Just want to stretch my legs
By Kitty Chen Dean
Appears on Page 47

Where in the World? Correct Answers