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Category: travel

Tourism is at a crossroads: which path will it choose?

Recently, there has been a huge amount of discussion on the impact of COVID-19 on tourism. Today, The Guardian published a piece on how Thailand’s islands have been affected, given their huge reliance on tourism. “Deserted beaches, empty bars: Covid-19 devastates Thailand’s tourist islands” is the headline.

I have spent a number of years in Thailand, and worked in travel, seeing how development has changed places. But, as my earliest time in the Kingdom was 2004, to go back further I have to look at old guidebooks. I have been collecting Lonely Planets from the 1980s and fascinated by how places used to be. Well-known Thai islands such as Koh Samui  are in normal times packed out with tourists filling the thousands of hotels, guesthouses, restaurants, bars, tourist shops etc. But such islands only a few decades ago were sparsely populated, with small fishing and farming communities that were relatively cut-off from the mainland. When I read about these places, I wish I was able to experience them before all the other tourists and development arrived, but at the same time mindful that any arrival in any destination furthers scope for development.

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Armchair travelling: the 5 best travel YouTubers to watch

When I’m at home at the best of times, I long for travel. But that’s nothing compared to the feeling I have right now, when it’s not even possible to travel out of my front door: I crave travel. That feeling of freedom to wander, new experiences, new people, new cultures, new food.

Never again will I take travel for granted. Whilst good travel books provide some relief, there are YouTubers out there producing some incredible content that can make you feel like you’re out there too, not here, avoiding outside human contact.

In no particular order here are five YouTube travel channels deserving of your time:

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