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South Africa

An Oyster’s Journey

Not too long ago, I was on a media junket run by the Hong Kong government. Unlike other sponsored journalist programs I’ve been on—bouncing along in SUVs on big-game safaris, touring indigenous women’s collectives that made jewelry out of Red Bull pull-tabs—this one was a dull series of meetings in tall glass towers with men...

ALSO FROM STRANGER'S GUIDE

Mexico City

Bullfighting

Three-quarters of Mexicans support a ban

Mexico City is home to Plaza de Toros Mexico, the largest bullring in the world. The first...

Mexico City

The Underworld

The sewer diver of Mexico City

Whereas the Greek underworld included five rivers, Mexico City’s underworld is a bit more complex—roughly 7,500...

Mexico City

Improvising Survival

The clash between the new global gentrifiers and Mexico City’s informal economies.

From downtown, it takes about an hour by metro to get to the Wednesday flea market...

Mexico City

The Pulque Chronicles

Mexico’s pre-Hispanic alcoholic drink finds new life in the city’s old school bars.

Ten years ago I lived in an apartment building in downtown Mexico City. One afternoon a...

Zimbabwe

The Great Hope

A Zimbabwean expat ponders her country's momentous election

Just under a year ago, a series of previously unimaginable events occurred in Zimbabwe. The Robert...

United States

Darkness and Enlightenment

Looking for a world without light pollution

I held my breath as I lowered myself into the swift, cold waters of Central Oregon’s...

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Mexico City

Eternal Funeral Pyres

The myth behind the Mexican volcanoes Iztaccíhuatl and Popocatépetl

The Iztaccíhuatl volcano is 51 miles from Mexico City but visible from almost any rooftop. Izta,...

Did You Know?

United States

Navigating Racism

During the Jim Crow era, African American travelers often relied on the Green Book to avoid encountering violence or harassment on the road. Victor H. Green, a postal carrier who lived in Harlem, introduced the guide in 1936 which listed establishments that welcomed non-white travelers. While the book initially only focused on the New York Metropolitan area, over time it grew to include the whole country.

Encounters that take you there.

Before there were guidebooks, 18th- and 19th-century authors wrote “stranger’s guides” to cities and countries, pamphlets and books that combined helpful tips with particular and offbeat advice and context: the best boarding houses alongside bits of history, preferred brothels as well as ways to avoid pickpockets. These guides were far removed from a modern, sanitized Fodor’s—rather they were personal, eccentric and intimate portrayals of place.

Stranger’s Guide is a modern version of that idea—a nonprofit publication designed to reveal the intricacies of places across the globe, through both local and foreign eyes.

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