Headlines can paint a pretty grim picture of life across our planet. On bad days, they can make any of us want to seek shelter at home. But in fact, doing the opposite can produce surprisingly curative results. Spin the globe. Pack a bag. Break bread with strangers. Soak in radical beauty. In short – travel.
We asked a range of people, from writers and chefs to musicians and photographers, to share one experience from the last year that truly inspired them – something that, in no uncertain terms, reminded them why they love the world. Madly. Here's what they told us.
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Because floating next to these humpbacks in Tonga reminded me of just how beautiful the Earth's creatures can be.
– Lia Barrett, BBC Travel contributor
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Because I finally went to Mexico for Día de los Muertos and discovered that every once in a while, reality can exceed expectations.
– Brad Cohen, BBC Travel Thirsty Explorer
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Because joining a ragtag band of fellow travellers, cooks and guides as I trekked back from La Ciudad Perdida in Colombia reminded me of the joy of sharing your journey with others.
– Candace Rose Rardon, BBC Travel contributor
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Because the beauty of the Grand Canyon
causes people to break out into expressions
of unedited joy.
– Pam Mandel, writer
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Because jumping into a river with millions of bright red salmon made me happy to be alive.
– Josh Humbert, BBC Travel contributor
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Because, not long after leaving Las Vegas last summer, I got to see a Vegas-style performance done to uncanny perfection in Sin City's curious cousin, the North Korean capital of Pyongyang.
– Pico Iyer, BBC Travel contributor