Travel

Cousteau, Hawaiians Set Sail to Raise Awareness

Publication: National Geographic News   Date: July 21, 2003   View Article

On board a modern research vessel laden with cutting-edge scuba gear and high-definition video cameras, Jean-Michel Cousteau is documenting a 1,200-mile (2,000-kilometer) long chain of remote islands and coral reefs in the tropical Pacific Ocean to raise awareness of its uniqueness and the need for its protection.

Hot on Cousteau’s trail a group of native Hawaiians will sail from Kauai in the main Hawaiian Islands to the Northwestern Hawaiian Islands in a traditional Polynesian voyaging canoe on a mission to restore the Hawaiian concept of malama—caring—to the land and sea to ensure a balance among all forms of life.

Tour Guides Research While Whale Watching

Publication: National Geographic News   Date: July 9, 2003   View Article

Hundreds of humpback whales spend their winter months breeding, giving birth, and caring for their young in Mexico’s sun-splashed Bahia de Banderas to the delight of the millions of tourists who flock to the resort community of Puerto Vallarta each year.

The humpbacks and most of the tourists have gone north for the summer. The whale breeding season runs from November through April and coincides with the high season for tourists seeking warm sun during the Northern Hemisphere’s winter.

Cousteau to Explore Remote Pacific Islands

Publication: National Geographic News   Date: July 7, 2003   View Article

Jean-Michel Cousteau embarked Sunday on a voyage along a 1,200-mile (2,000- kilometer) chain of remote islands and coral reefs in the tropical Pacific Ocean to document the marine life that thrives there and the traces of humankind that linger.

The atolls stretch out towards Asia from the main Hawaiian Islands and are known as the Northwestern Hawaiian Islands. The islands serve as nesting grounds for green sea turtles (Chelonia brongniart), home to millions of seabirds, and a refuge for rare monk seals (Monachus fleming). The surrounding reefs swarm with life. But their remoteness has kept them out of the public eye and out of reach of even the most intrepid ocean explorers.

Rare Total Eclipse for Africa, Australia

Publication: National Geographic News   Date: December 3, 2002   View Article

Amateur and professional astronomers are flocking to the southern hemisphere to catch one of nature’s greatest shows—a total eclipse of the sun. The spectacle gives earthlings a rare glimpse of the corona, the scorching hot and faint outer atmosphere of the sun.

“Solar eclipses are spectacular to watch because of the drama of the sky going dark in the daytime, the blue sky going away, the rapid changes in the sun,” said Jay Pasachoff, an astronomer from Williams College in Massachusetts.

Machu Picchu Under Threat From Pressures of Tourism

Publication: National Geographic News   Date: April 15, 2002   View Article

In 1911, an innkeeper from the Peruvian town of Aguas Calientes led Hiram Bingham on a scramble up a steep, jungle-tangled embankment to the extensive ruins of an Inca settlement that was named Machu Picchu for the neighboring mountain.

Bingham, a professor from Yale University who was exploring in the region, later wondered in his book, Lost City of the Incas, whether anyone would believe what he had found.

Rural Mexicans Learning to Make Ecotourism Pay

Publication: National Geographic News   Date: September 5, 2001   View Article

It’s not hard to advocate ecotourism—loosely defined as a form of travel that protects an area of the natural world while enabling the local people to preserve their culture and meet their daily needs.

The hard part is making ecotourism work.

Coral Reef Paradise Round in Remote Indonesian Islands

Publication: National Geographic News   Date: August 8, 2001   View Article

Scuba divers, take note: The waters of the Raja Ampat Islands off Indonesia’s province of Irian Jaya may replace heralded Palau as the most species-rich sea in the world.

An international team of marine biologists who visited the Raja Ampats recently to examine the reefs said they found what may be an unparalleled array of species—corals, fishes, and mollusks—including some species never seen before.

© 2008-2010 Collected Writings By John Roach