Rick Steves Europe

Rick Steves advocates smart independent travel. As host, writer and producer of the popular public television series Rick Steves' Europe, and best-selling author of 30+ European travel books, he encourages Americans to delve deep into Europe and become "temporary locals." He helps American travelers connect much more intimately and authentically with Europe — and Europeans — for a fraction of what mainstream tourists pay. Over the past 15 years, Rick has hosted over 100 travel shows for public television (most still airing in rebroadcasts), and numerous pledge specials. Rick's relationship with public television began with his first series, Travels in Europe with Rick Steves. Since then, he has become one of public television's top pledge drive hosts, raising millions of dollars annually for stations across the U.S. His current Rick Steves' Europe TV series has grown to 70 half-hour shows carried by over 300 public television stations annually, reaching 95 percent of U.S. markets. Rick writes and co-produces his television programs through his company, Back Door Productions. Rick recently launched a weekly public radio program, Travel with Rick Steves. Focusing on world travel, each hour-long program has a guest travel expert for interviews, followed by call-ins with questions and comments. This show airs across the country and has spawned a popular podcast. Rick self-published the first edition of his travel skills book, Europe Through the Back Door, in 1980. He has also written 12 country guidebooks, nine city and regional guides, six phrase books, and co-authored Europe 101: History and Art for Travelers. His Italy guidebook is the bestselling international guidebook in the U.S. In 1999, he tackled a new genre of travel writing with his anecdotal Postcards from Europe, recounting his favorite moments from 25 years of travel. Rick's books are published by Avalon Travel Publishing. In addition to his guidebooks, Rick is a syndicated newspaper columnist with the Tribune Media Services and is a regular on the op-ed page of USA Today. He appears frequently on television, radio, and the Internet as the leading authority on independent European travel. Rick took his first trip to Europe in 1969, visiting piano factories with his father, a piano importer. By the time he reached 18, Rick jokes, "I realized I didn't need my parents to travel!" He began traveling on his own, funding his trips by teaching piano lessons. In 1976, he started a business called Europe Through the Back Door (ETBD), which has since grown from a one-man operation to a company with a well-traveled staff of 70 full-time employees. ETBD offers free travel information through its travel center, website (www.ricksteves.com), European Railpass Guide, and free travel newsletters. ETBD also runs a successful European tour program with over 300 departures — attracting over 10,000 travelers — annually. Rick is outspoken on the need for Americans to fit better into our planet by broadening their perspectives through travel. He is also committed to his own neighborhood. He's an active member of the Lutheran church (and has hosted the ELCA's national video productions). He's a board member of NORML (working to reform marijuana laws in the USA). And Rick has provided his local YWCA with a 24-unit apartment building with which to house homeless mothers. Rick lives and works in his hometown of Edmonds, Washington. His office window overlooks his old junior high school. He lives with his wife Anne, and two children, Andy and Jackie.

From Rick Steves Europe

  • Versailles; Being French; Understanding Israel in 60 Days or Less
    <p>Rick and two French guides offer tips for planning a visit to the royal palace of Versailles and discuss contemporary issues facing France. Graphic Novelist Sarah Glidden discusses her first trip to Israel on a Birthright tour.</p> For more information on Travel with Rick Steves - including episode descriptions, program archives and related details - visit www.ricksteves.com.
  • Traditional Irish Music; Being Irish; Belfast
    <p> Give yourself an authentic Saint Patrick&#39;s Day as friends from Ireland demonstrate how traditional folk music continues to play an important role in their lives on a level that everyone can enjoy. Explore the sights of Ireland&#39;s second city, Belfast, and hear how Northern Ireland has outgrown its reputation for sectarian violence.&nbsp; We&#39;ll also have pointers on what it really means to be Irish.</p> For more information on Travel with Rick Steves - including episode descriptions, program archives and related details - visit www.ricksteves.com.
  • Marty Essen’s Favorite Wild Animals; Ireland 2017
    <p>Photographer Marty Essen talks to Rick about his close encounters with animals in their native environments. And guides from Ireland recommend their favorite parts of Ireland to explore for people visiting this year.</p> For more information on Travel with Rick Steves - including episode descriptions, program archives and related details - visit www.ricksteves.com.
  • American Women's History Sites; Diana Nyad; Wilderness Healing
    <p> Celebrate 30 years of Women&#39;s History Month in the USA by visiting sites where women changed the nation&#39;s history, recommended by a former director of the National Museum of American History. Endurance swimmer Diana Nyad tells us how she set a world record swimming from Havana to Key West. And naturalist Gary Ferguson describes the fierce nature of the wilderness.</p> For more information on Travel with Rick Steves - including episode descriptions, program archives and related details - visit www.ricksteves.com.
  • Food Regions of Spain; Carnival in Venice and Rhineland; Alt for Norge
    <p> We&#39;ll hear about the local delicacies found on the various tapa menus across Spain. Then we&#39;ll learn more about the centuries-long traditions behind Carnival celebrations in Venice and Cologne, the scene of some of Europe&#39;s biggest wintertime parties. Plus we&#39;ll listen in on the Norwegian TV show that&#39;s helped many Americans discover their old-country ancestry.</p> For more information on Travel with Rick Steves - including episode descriptions, program archives and related details - visit www.ricksteves.com.
  • Budapest Riverwalk; Understanding the Brexit Vote
    <p> We&#39;ll take an audio stroll along the bustling banks of the Danube as it flows through the scenic heart of Budapest. Then we&#39;ll hear from some Brits about what motivated them to vote for or against leaving the European Union, and about what makes them fearful &mdash; or optimistic &mdash; for the years ahead.</p> For more information on Travel with Rick Steves - including episode descriptions, program archives and related details - visit www.ricksteves.com.
  • Essential Sicily; If Venice Dies; Casanova
    <p> A Sicilian tour guide lays out the essentials for exploring his distinctive sun-drenched island. Then a prominent Italian archaeologist discusses Venice's population decline, which continues even as crowds of tourists and cruise-ship passengers overwhelm Italy's most beloved city. And we&#39;ll get all the gritty details on the side of 18<sup>th</sup>-century Venice described so vividly by that infamous libertine, Casanova.</p> For more information on Travel with Rick Steves - including episode descriptions, program archives and related details - visit www.ricksteves.com.
  • Italy by Train; Italy: North Versus South
    <p> British author Tim Parks explains why the Italian rail system, which he depends on daily, means more to him than a mere means of transportation. Then a pair of tour guides from opposite ends of Italy highlight the regional differences that make travel in Italy such an enjoyable study in contrasts.</p> For more information on Travel with Rick Steves - including episode descriptions, program archives and related details - visit www.ricksteves.com.
  • Becoming a Road Trip Pilgrim; China Tourism; Nationalism in Europe
    <p> Journalist Elizabeth Becker tells us how China&#39;s mandatory Golden Week holidays have boosted the fortunes of the travel industry.&nbsp;A European panel explains how populist politics are playing out in the European Union.&nbsp;And discover the rewards of being a &quot;road trip pilgrim,&quot; to add enthusiasm to your next adventure.&nbsp;</p> For more information on Travel with Rick Steves - including episode descriptions, program archives and related details - visit www.ricksteves.com.
  • Saigon; David Suchet; Open Phones: Travel Plans
    <p> Travel writer Dave Fox discusses everyday life as an American in Saigon, then British actor David Suchet explains why this year&#39;s 500-year anniversary of the Protestant Reformation is so important &mdash; and why London is the world&#39;s best city for theater. Plus, listeners get Rick&#39;s advice for making the most of their European travel plans for 2017.</p> For more information on Travel with Rick Steves - including episode descriptions, program archives and related details - visit www.ricksteves.com.

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