Pathway through dense temperate rainforest tree ferns in New Zealand,

Unique Plants and Animals of New Zealand

Back before humans showed up in New Zealand, the islands were isolated from contact with any other landmass for millions of years. This gave the native wildlife time to develop in some unique ways. Learn about the unique New Zealand plants and animals that have managed to survive the arrival of humans and non-native species, and ongoing preservation efforts.

Surfers in action at Sayulita beach. Photo © Justin Henderson.

Discover Sayulita and the Riviera Nayarit

Once upon a time, not so many people made the effort to see what lies north of Puerto Vallarta along the beautiful and verdant Nayarit Coast. This has changed of late, however, as the “Riviera Nayarit” has emerged as a major tourist destination in Mexico. Whether you are looking for a quiet respite from the crowded streets and beaches of Puerto Vallarta or a nonstop beach party with hundreds of potential new friends, there’s a place for you just a couple of hours away.

Misty mountains surround Jinotega. Photo © Elizabeth Perkins.

A Week in Nicaragua’s Great Green North

Nicaragua north of Managua is offbeat and less visited, giving the creative traveler lots of opportunities. Each town has a swimming hole, local hike, or archaeological site that will beckon you farther, immersing you in an authentic and sublime world you won’t soon forget.

Sun Bay Beach in Vieques. Photo © Mark Franco/123rf.

Best Vieques Beaches

Aside from Mosquito Bay, the main reason to come to Vieques is to enjoy the staggering beauty of its miles of remote, pristine beaches and clear, turquoise waters. Each beach has its own unique characteristics—some are calm and shallow, others have big crashing waves, and still others offer spectacular snorkeling. Several are accessible only from dirt trails, off road or by foot, so bring sturdy shoes. And don’t forget the bug spray.

Volcán Concepción. Photo © Dreamstime.com.

Nicaragua’s Best Volcano Hikes

No trip to Nicaragua is complete without visiting at least one volcano. Dormant and active peaks are scattered up and down the Pacific half of the country. With a couple exceptions, most of these hikes are long and challenging, requiring an experienced guide. Here are the best volcano hikes from north to south.

Scuba divers set out from the Águila de Osa Inn at Drake Bay. Photo © Christopher P. Baker.

Things to Do in Drake Bay, Costa Rica

On the north side of the Osa Peninsula, Drake Bay lies between the mouth of the Río Sierpe and the vastness of Parque Nacional Corcovado. It’s a good base for sportfishing and scuba diving, and for hikes into nearby wildlife refuges and the national park.

Ebenezer Baptist Church. Photo © Lpkb/Dreamstime.

A Guided Tour of the Martin Luther King Jr. National Historic Site

Almost a million people make the pilgrimage to Atlanta each year to pay tribute to the legacy of Martin Luther King Jr. Since 1980, the National Park Service has maintained the Martin Luther King Jr. National Historic Site, which includes the graves of King and his wife, the historic Ebenezer Baptist Church, the King Birth Home, and Historic Fire Station No. 6.

Sunner Time by artist Nellie Mae Rowe. Photo © Nellie Mae Rowe [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons.

African American Arts and Heritage in Atlanta

Atlanta has been called “the crown jewel in the story of black America” for good reason. The city’s distinction as a crossroads for equal opportunity dates back generations, due in no small part to the concentration of historically black colleges (the largest in the country) and long legacy of African American entrepreneurship and innovation. This unique heritage is also a major draw for tourism; no matter what the calendar says, it’s always Black History Month in Atlanta.