A cool tool can be any book, gadget, software, video, map, hardware, material, or website that is tried and true. All reviews on this site are written by readers who have actually used the tool and others like it. Items can be either old or new as long as they are wonderful. We post things we like and ignore the rest. Suggestions for tools much better than what is recommended here are always wanted.
I recently chatted with Jason Moore on the ZeroToTravel Podcast to kick off 2023 with a nomad destinations theme. We dove into finding the ideal city size, why some of the most popular destinations got that way, and what some “up and coming” places to unpack your laptop for a while might be. Listen on your favorite podcast app or here: Best Remote Work + Digital Nomad Destinations 2023 (And Beyond)
Regions That Have Bounced Back
The UN’s World Tourism Organization has released its stats for 2022 and you weren’t imagining those crowds: Europe was almost back to pre-pandemic levels last year, only down 21% from 2019 (585 million arrivals). The Middle East was only down 17%. It’s likely that these two regions will be back to “normal” this year, so hit them at shoulder season or get those flight tickets now. See the full report here.
What the Earth Used to Look Like
Want to see what our planet looked like when there was just one land mass 240 million years ago? Or in the Jurassic Period 170 million years ago when dinosaurs roamed the Earth? The cool spinning globe at DinosaurPictures.org shows the planet at various stages of its evolution, with current countries layered in on top to show the days when you could walk from South America to Africa. Use the pulldown menu at the top to change the time period or on the right to go to a time like “first primates.”
Long-lasting Travel Hats
Would you pay a bit more for a hat that’s guaranteed for life? Next time you’re traveling in a sunny place, watch the experienced travelers with light skin and you’ll probably start seeing Tilley hats around you on a daily basis. I have packed one on almost every trip for the past 15 years and when I wore out an Airflo one and it started coming apart, the company sent a replacement. I just had to pay for shipping and send photo proof that I had destroyed the old one. Get them at Amazon or direct from the company.