Imagine that you are on a road trip in a country where you haven’t been before and whose culture you don’t know. Street signs are familiar, with the exception of one or two odd signs that feature encrypted local language. Then, on the road ahead you spot a pedestrian crossing that is floating above the street. Welcome to Iceland.
If you know the quiet back roads and cycling lanes of Europe, you have a fantastic opportunity to cycle in many countries. The best thing with cycling is that during the daily pedaling journey it is possible to see many sights and absorb local culture. But where are Europe’s best cycling routes? EuroVelo has mapped 15 routes that let cyclists explore Europe along cycling-friendly roads.
One important thing that makes traveling in Europe, especially in countries that have joined the Euro, easy is the common money. You can cross borders, for instance, from France to Italy or from Estonia to Finland without having to worry about currency rates or having to search for a currency exchange kiosk. For travelers, the Euro is the best thing since the bottled water was invented, but also statisticians can take advantage of the common currency, because it makes comparisons between regions easier. Now, Luxembourg has been ranked as the most expensive country in the Euro zone.
Even if your car or campervan doesn’t have a shining new entertainment system with a myriad of external connectors, you can add voice control to your car. Most importantly, you can easily add speech-enabled navigation (you don’t need a dedicated GPS device), access to news, and music. The small gadget that does all this is the Garmin Speak.
Here is an electric vehicle that looks like it was borrowed from the movie Blade Runner: a motorbike that hovers above ground and moves rapidly vertically, laterally and forward. The police force of Dubai has already subscribed to the vehicle because it allows them quickly to reach any place in the city.
A safe travel destination doesn’t mean it is a boring place. On the contrary, if we take a look at the Economist Intelligence Unit’s ranking for the world’s safest cities in 2017, for instance, Amsterdam has a fairly large red light district with cannabis cafés in the city center, but it still is the sixth safest city in the world. The safest city in the world is Japan’s capital Tokyo.
The race that takes sailors around the world on sailing boats, the Volvo Ocean Race, starts from Alicante, Spain in 2017. After sailing about 45 000 nautical miles (mind-blowing 83 300 kilometers, or 51 700 miles) those teams who have survived the entire journey arrive in Hague, Netherlands by the end of June 2018.
Electric cars, scooters and bicycles are here already, but conducting a long road trip on a fully electric car has a problem: range. For instance, manufacturers of compact electric cars may specify a 200 mile / 350 km range for their vehicles, but in reality, the range can be one-fourth or one-third shorter than that. Toshiba’s solution to the problem is the SCIB vehicle battery that fully charges in six minutes.
When you are riding a bicycle in an unfamiliar place, you need something to help you navigate. Dedicated bicycle navigators are available, for instance, from Garmin, and many riders use their smartphones to find their way to the destination. The smartest product for cycling navigation may well be a tiny puck that does nothing else but points the rider to the right direction.
I became concerned about the possibility of being cheated after one of my colleagues wrote about her horrible experience in a flat she had rented in Portugal from Airbnb. The flat itself was as advertised, but the ghetto-like neighborhood wasn’t safe for foreigners.