Wiki-World

How did I not know about Wikivoyage until now? It’s a crime, I tell you. But now that I have learned of its existence, I’ve got an instant rabbit hole to fall down any time I’m bored at work.

On Wikivoyage, destination pages are broken down neatly into intuitive sections (Do, Eat, Buy). While some pages are more robust than others, the ones I visited have plenty of (apparently correct, based on my limited knowledge–as with all wikis, reader beware) information, including what appear to be personal tips on transportation and safety, for example. As you drill down to more specific locations, you can find more details about lodging and restaurants, including, again, what appear to be personal tips on who speaks English at a certain hotel or what dish to eat at a certain restaurant. There’s enough depth here, combined with the wonderful convenience of links, that I think I’ll try to plan my next trip with Wikivoyage as a starting point, rather than my old standby dead-tree Lonely Planet guide.

Even more intriguing are some of the other topics they feature. Each month the site features, in addition to a more well-traveled destination, an “Off the Beaten Path” destination, acquainting you with locations farther afield than most of us would even think about looking into. By putting those destinations right on the home page, they get a spotlight that normally only shines on, for example, Tokyo or Disney World.

Beyond pages on specific destinations, the site features general travel topics, such as what should be in your first aid kit, and a more extensive phrasebook than is easily accessible anywhere else I’ve seen. Need to learn to count in Yoruba? They’ve got you covered.

The most exciting pages to me are the ones that take you through various itineraries. There’s a huge variety, everything from hikes in the Lake District of the UK to a month-long tour around Southeast Asia. It seems like the perfect page to start on if you’ve got the itch to go somewhere but no clue where exactly.

Have you spent any time poking around Wikivoyage? What did you discover?

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