- Virginia Johnson
When you travel, is walking always part of the itinerary? Besides being good exercise generally and a great way to unstiffen those limbs after the tight quarters on an airplane, train, or car, walking lets you see so much more of your destination. Take your time, and you can see –and- understand the sites much better than if you whirled past them on a tour bus.
Set your own pace, and you’ll have the opportunity to make interesting discoveries, about a place’s history, maybe even how it relates to the history of the world itself. A History of the World in 500 Walks is an intriguing blend of travel book and history book. With chapters ranging from Prehistory (the Gold Coast Hinterland Great Walk, a 34-mile rainforest traverse in Queensland, Australia) to the 20th Century (the Selma to Montgomery Trail in Alabama and the Long Trail in Vermont—completed in 1930), you’ll become more aware of history’s triumphs and tragedies and nature’s sometimes harsh beauty, as well as other cultures' histories, as can be found on the Nakasendo Trail in Japan.
Even if you never take a single one of these walks in person, Sarah Baxter’s book lets you cover the same ground in your mind. With insight, she gives you 500 walks around the world to think on and dream on. Although sometimes only described by a single paragraph, each entry contains enough information to spark a reader’s imagination. If you would like to plan on taking that walk in reality, the site information can be Googled easily enough.
This winter, why not plan a journey—exotic or domestic—that will take you back in time to revisit intriguing landscapes? If you are more of an armchair traveler who would prefer to delve into the details via the pages of a book, we at the library can help you with that plan, too. But, however you wish to explore, don’t miss 500 Walks. Travel certainly enriches the mind, whether it’s on foot or between the pages of a book.