Bridget Gleeson Travel Writer

Bridget Gleeson
I make maps: you should, too.
I make maps: you should, too.

Maps you make for work, maps you make for fun, maps that inspire you, maps that force you to be practical, maps that cause you to fight with your boyfriend.

Things I Ate in Peru
Things I Ate in Peru

In a follow-up to my runaway, practically-went-viral smash – the hard-hitting piece of culinary reporting ‘Things We Ate in Ecuador’ – I present you with the things I ate in Peru.

Ringing in the new year, alone on an airplane
Ringing in the new year, alone on an airplane

The start of a new year always makes you think.  Traveling alone also makes you think. So what happens when you travel alone to a foreign place over New Year’s?

High-low traveler: weekend notebook
High-low traveler: weekend notebook

From a five-star hotel in Uruguay to the villas (slums) of Buenos Aires? Now that’s my kind of work week.

A lonely planet in orbit
A lonely planet in orbit

Or bidding farewell to an icon as we’ve known it. ______________________________

Living nowhere / living everywhere
Living nowhere / living everywhere

Moving around is easy. Staying still is hard.

An ode to my traveling companion
An ode to my traveling companion

We’d never been on such a long trip together, you and me, so I didn’t know how it would go. Six weeks of traveling through Brazil – no, seven.

Terra da felicidade: A Return to Afro-Brazil
Terra da felicidade: A Return to Afro-Brazil

‘The city of Bahia, black and religious, is almost as mysterious as the green sea…’

Classic / contemporary: Christmas in the Big Apple
Classic / contemporary: Christmas in the Big Apple

As New Yorkers left the city in mass exodus, we rolled into Penn Station just in time for the holidays.

Vintage Wonderland: South Beach
Vintage Wonderland: South Beach

After one bicycle ride down Ocean Drive, I was ready to chop off my hair, start smoking cloves, and ditch my Macbook for a vintage typewriter.

One for the Road
One for the Road

On traveling alone: accepting solitude, tolerating jerks and being your own best friend.

Seven Days in the Desert
Seven Days in the Desert

I just spent one of the happiest weeks of my life in San Pedro de Atacama, Chile.

Los Angeles, Ablaze
Los Angeles, Ablaze

‘Remnants of a lost Los Angeles, city of the mind, remembered and yearned for, the neon lights of LA – celestial fires of another sort, green, gold, ruby red, electric blue…

Aventura Colombiana
Aventura Colombiana

Sunshine, coconuts and white sandy beaches – and wild crocodiles – and armed robbery – oh, Colombia.

Thirty days in Sin City
Thirty days in Sin City

I spent a whole month in Vegas, and I’m still recovering.

Red Rock: Where Vegas showgirls hit the trails
Red Rock: Where Vegas showgirls hit the trails

First, I have to say: I should have just camped out at Red Rock Canyon last weekend.

Northern exposure
Northern exposure

Siestas, asados, pelopinchos, empanadas… oh, how I love the laid-back charm of northern Argentina.

Stranded in Brazil
Stranded in Brazil

When mechanical error strikes: how to calm down an angry mob of frequent fliers.

Ringing in the New Year, Punta del Este-style
Ringing in the New Year, Punta del Este-style

We toasted the end of 2011 with heart-stopping steak sandwiches and wild fireworks on the sand.

At home in Santiago
At home in Santiago

When you stay in a foreign home, you learn what the locals wear to bed and how they take their coffee (in this case? Instant Nescafé with steaming hot milk and liquid sweetener.)

The High-Low Traveler: Evening at the theatre
The High-Low Traveler: Evening at the theatre

Velvet ropes, champagne and ballerinas at the State Opera House in Prague – for less than the price of a movie ticket in New York?

36 Utterly Selfish Hours in Budapest
36 Utterly Selfish Hours in Budapest

I skipped the museums. But I had breakfast in the subway, pretended to shop for apples and saw lots of beautiful Hungarian women.

In hot water
In hot water

Yesterday I floated in the waters of Budapest’s thermal spas. Yes, the system is confusing if you don’t know Hungarian – and yes, the older gentlemen are satisfyingly rotund in their tiny swimsuits.

Drink up, it won’t last
Drink up, it won’t last

Reporting live from vinobraní, Prague’s young wine festival.

Prague: my old flame
Prague: my old flame

Or the ways in which revisiting a city where you once lived is like seeing a person you were once in love with.

Things we ate in Ecuador
Things we ate in Ecuador

A week of gourmet meals on a yacht in the Galapagos – plus a week of cevicheria-hopping in Quito?

Ten things I didn’t know about the Galapagos
Ten things I didn’t know about the Galapagos

The islands startled me. They’re rougher, colder and more spectacular than I expected – somehow bleak and lush at the same time.

Amish country: foodie destination?
Amish country: foodie destination?

Peruvian ceviche and Chinese pork dumplings get all the hype. But the Amish pretzel dog is an unsung hero.

A wandering homebody
A wandering homebody

I like to stay in. I like to cook. I don’t like to be separated from my family. How on earth did I end up as a travel writer?

Secret gardens in the big city
Secret gardens in the big city

‘My life, which seems so simple and monotonous, is really a complicated affair of cafés where they like me and cafés where they don’t, streets that are friendly, streets that aren’t, rooms where I might be happy, rooms where I shall never be…’ — Jean Rhys (Good Morning, Midnight)

An ode to my barrio
An ode to my barrio

Parisian architecture, Peruvian street food, handsome gentlemen in three-piece suits, crowded bookshops, glamorous old cafes… what’s not to like about living downtown?

Buenos Aires: the underground
Buenos Aires: the underground

“I like to be with other people who don’t need to fit the mold or belong to some kind of tribe. Then we can feel free to celebrate art and music however we want.”

California love
California love

On most Lonely Planet trips, I’m a stranger in a strange land. But here in California, I have a gym membership, happy hour dates, and friends with boats.

Right turn on a red light
Right turn on a red light

I was a tough sell. But the deed is done – I really, really like southern California.

Holiday nostalgia
Holiday nostalgia

Another holiday, another cake, another desperate attempt to carry on our family traditions far from home.

Edible souvenirs
Edible souvenirs

I used to collect keepsakes from my travels – batiks from India, espresso cups from Italy – but things got out of hand.

Sleeping pods & champagne: airport VIP lounges
Sleeping pods & champagne: airport VIP lounges

Can you learn anything about a destination from inside the airport?

We got lost in Lisbon, then the rental car broke down
We got lost in Lisbon, then the rental car broke down

I like talking about the stuff that never makes it onto a postcard. The unexpected failures and mini-disasters, jet lag haze, upside-down maps. Interpersonal dramas.

Someone else’s family tree
Someone else’s family tree

In the past week, I’ve been to Portuguese farmhouses, bohemian apartments in Pamplona, birthday parties in the Algarve and a dinner party in an old Spanish barn. (Oh yeah, I also spent a night at the Holiday Inn in Lisbon. Don’t ask.)

Woody Allen’s Barcelona: fact or fiction?
Woody Allen’s Barcelona: fact or fiction?

This isn’t my first time in the Catalonian capital – it’s one of my favorite cities. But until this week I thought that the leafy settings of Vicky Christina Barcelona were just another of the director’s urban fantasies.

Carrying on
Carrying on

I don’t care to be the girl with the overstuffed suitcase. It’s a matter of pride.

Last-minute hits: the Windy City
My mom and I were looking for the toy camera exhibit.

It’s a bittersweet fact of travel – we discover some of our favorite things about a place in the moments before we leave it.

Highway to hell
Highway to hell

I’m kidding. But it wasn’t easy traveling up one of the world’s most rugged and desolate highways on a beat-up old bus with thirty backpackers – and my mom.

The Godfather trifecta
The Godfather trifecta

What do Robert Duvall, Francis Ford Coppola and Al Pacino have in common? A lot more than stony facial expressions and severed horse heads.

Return of the native son (plus one)
Return of the native son (plus one)

My boyfriend and I are planning a last-minute vacation to Spain and Portugal. Or perhaps it’s more accurate to say I’m planning a vacation while he tries to get a word in edgewise.

The High/Low Traveler
The High/Low Traveler

I’m a high/low traveler – at least when it comes to work. I stay in five-star hotels and backpacker hostels. I like chocolate crème brûlée as much as I like the candy bars sold in German vending machines.

Signs of (indigenous) life
Signs of (indigenous) life

Everyone’s abuzz about the BBC’s recent piece on an ‘uncontacted tribe’ living in the Brazilian rainforest. And by everyone, I especially mean those of us who recently researched and wrote Lonely Planet’s Brazil 8 book.

Culinary Chicago
Culinary Chicago

Avec, check (liked the stuffed olives and the cool all-wood interior with communal tables.) Purple Pig, check (liked the quartino carafes of Greek chardonnay and the fried brussel sprouts with lemon, thyme and pepper.)

Mini-break in Lake Geneva
Mini-break in Lake Geneva

Much as I adore my friends, I loathe the phrase ‘girls’ getaway.’ I like ‘mini-break,’ as the Brits say – or better yet, the Spanish word ‘escapadita’ (little escape.)

Valentine getaway
Valentine getaway

I know it’s a greeting-card holiday. But I decided to plan a mini-vacation for two this Valentine’s Day – in my defense, I had a very good reason.