Urban stimulants

Photo by Wells Baum (Grand Central Station)
Photo by Wells Baum (Grand Central Station)

There’s a compelling story everywhere you go. But some places (e.g. New York) are more content rich than others.

All you need to do is walk a few blocks and observe with the cerebration of your senses.

The graffiti scrawled on the outside of million dollar apartments, the street smoke billowing out from the sewers, the smell of hot dogs and nuts from the street vendors, the sound of delivery trucks running through potholes, and the scratch you get from someone’s suitcase as they rush by you.

Everything is attractive, a potential a souvenir of the present moment.

New York manufactures an excess of content and inspiration, much like the Internet. Such hyperactivity is overwhelming and hard to parse — some thrive on The City's ubiquitous stimulus, others feel compelled to escape to Florida to refuel.

External provocation is integral to any environment. After all, that's why we travel — to be astounded by newness.

If boredom is your enemy, seeking interesting places with variable rewards may be your calling. But that last thing you want is to get abused by the infinite. It's better to scroll with intention to coalesce out of the void of 24/7 distraction.

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‘Time is to clock as mind is to brain’ 🕰️

Longitude: The True Story of a Lone Genius Who Solved the Greatest Scientific Problem of His Time

Time is to clock as mind is to brain. The clock or watch somehow contains the time. And yet time refuses to be bottled up like a genie stuffed in a lamp. Whether it flows as sand or turns on wheels within wheels, time escapes irretrievably, while we watch. Even when the bulbs of the hourglass shatter, when darkness withholds the shadow from the sundial, when the mainspring winds down so far that the clock hands hold still as death, time itself keeps on. The most we can hope a watch to do is mark that progress. And since time sets its own tempo, like a heartbeat or an ebb tide, timepieces don’t really keep time. They just keep up with it, if they’re able.

— Dava Sobel, Longitude: The True Story of a Lone Genius Who Solved the Greatest Scientific Problem of His Time

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Bailong Elevator, the highest outdoor elevator in the world

Bailong Elevator, the highest elevator in the world image
Image via @nk7

The Bailong Elevator is the world's highest outdoor elevator, towering an astonishing 1,070 feet high inside the National Forest Park in the Wulingyuan area of Zhangjiajie, China. Opened in 2002, the elevator allows 50 visitors at a time to skip up the mountain in two minutes versus a dangerous five-hour car ride.

As you can imagine, the outdoor lift also provides panoramic scenery to its riders of bridges and villages below. Meanwhile, the top of the mountain features the scenic Yuanjiajie natural heritage spot.

Add Zhangjiajie National Park to the list of places to visit, along with Vietnam's Golden Bridge and Coron Island in the Philippines. See more about the Bailong Elevator in the video below.


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Surfing a world-record 80 foot gigantic wave

Surfing a word-record 80 foot gigantic wave #nature
Francisco Leong/AFP/Getty Images

Nature always makes you feel small. Brazilian surfer Rodrigo Koxa surfed a record-setting 80-foot wave in November 2017 off the coast of Nazaré, Portugal. Just look at the lighthouse and onlookers in perspective to the surfer surrounded by the mountainous wave, or shall we say avalanche. Watch it for yourself.

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Over and into the Rainbow Mountain in Peru

The Rainbow Mountain in Peru #travel #traveldestinations #peru

I visited Cusco, Peru nearly two years ago but somehow never heard of the Rainbow Mountains while I was there. These skittle-looking ranges also called Vinicunca, are a three-hour ride outside the Peruvian city. The red, yellow, purple, and greenish hues are a result of leftover mineral deposits from ice sheets that once filled the area. It looks like I'll have to make a second trip so I can hike this!

The Rainbow Mountain in Peru
The Rainbow Mountain in Peru

More info here.

Photos via Getty

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Coron Palawan: The most beautiful island in the world

An image of Coron Palawan, the most beautiful island in the world
Image via H.abanil

With a population of 51,803 people, Coron island in the Philippines is considered one of the most beautiful islands in the world. And it looks like paradise. On a historical note, Japan used the island as a refueling base during World War II. Check out more images and a video after the jump!

An image of Coron Palawan, the most beautiful island in the world
An image of Coron Palawan, the most beautiful island in the world
An image of Coron Palawan, the most beautiful island in the world
An image of Coron Palawan, the most beautiful island in the world
An image of Coron Palawan, the most beautiful island in the world

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Anthony Bourdain’s tip for aspiring travelers

No Reservations: Around the World on an Empty Stomach (Amazon) was Bourdain's sixth book. In it, he offered this sage advice to ambitious world travelers.   

“Travel isn’t always pretty. It isn’t always comfortable. Sometimes it hurts, it even breaks your heart. But that’s okay. The journey changes you; it should change you. It leaves mark on your memory, on your consciousness, on your heart, and on your body. You take something with you. Hopefully, you leave something good behind.”

Anthony Bourdain

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