How much of travel today has become a list?
Dan Kieran, writing in The Idle Traveller, touches upon a series of books of which I discovered for the first time on a yacht I used to run. I first read Baedeker’s Mediterranean whilst sailing down the coast of Galicia on my way to Palma.
It was that perfect time of year to properly go sailing. Early in the season, with weather to contend with and judgements to make; but ample time to make them and remain in port discovering somewhere unlikely. Galicia is one of Europe’a truly untapped cruising grounds.
The Badaeker’s series of travel guides are obviously of a certain age. A distinctive bright red cover conceals a well bound compilation of text and tidy fold out maps. The text on that thin paper that crams so much into a small volume. Much smaller and more practical in size than the average modern travel guide. Lonely Planet et al take note.
Written at a time before aviation had come to the fore, but in a golden age of land and sea, one characteristic of Badaeker is the open ideas it gives as to how you might travel between different places.
The journey is integral, because at that time, the routes between places were so far from clearly defined. With this comes the possibility of independent discovery.
No top-tens, no must sees, and no lists…