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

  • Slavic View of EU; Undocumented
    <p>Friends of Rick&#39;s from the Czech Republic, Slovenia, and Bosnia share a Slavic perspective on what it means to participate in the European Union. Then novelist David Lida describes what poverty in rural Mexico looks like, and its role in the lives of many who enter the US illegally in search of work. Plus, Rick shares an audio snapshot from a restoration project in the heart of Warsaw.</p> For more information on Travel with Rick Steves - including episode descriptions, program archives and related details - visit www.ricksteves.com.
  • Naples; Human Trafficking; What's New in Oslo
    <p>Get insider advice for enjoying Naples &mdash; home to what has to be the liveliest street scene in Italy &mdash; without feeling put off by its in-your-face energy. Then listen in as a leading expert on international terrorism explains how and why groups such as ISIS and Al Qaeda have turned to human trafficking and kidnapping. Plus, hear a tour guide from Oslo's freshest tips for visiting Norway&#39;s nature-loving, eco-friendly, and expensive capital city.</p> For more information on Travel with Rick Steves - including episode descriptions, program archives and related details - visit www.ricksteves.com.
  • Orlando Beyond Disney; Oh Florida; American Right to Roam
    <p>The author of Frommer&#39;s Orlando guidebook returns with ideas for enjoying central Florida beyond the big theme parks. Then Tampa Bay Times reporter Craig Pittman discusses what makes his home state one of a kind &mdash; and much more than the target of punch lines. Plus, writer and trespasser extraordinaire Ken Ilgunas describes his hike from the tar sands of Alberta to the Gulf Coast of Texas.</p> For more information on Travel with Rick Steves - including episode descriptions, program archives and related details - visit www.ricksteves.com.
  • Porto and the Douro Valley; Midnight in Siberia; Scottish Pub Talk
    <p>Guides from Portugal describe the delights of Porto, and the winemaking traditions of the nearby Douro Valley in the north of Portugal. Then NPR&#39;s David Greene shares what he learned about everyday working-class Russians from his trips on the Trans-Siberian Railway. And friends from Scotland explain the cultural importance of their neighborhood pubs, and share tips for making yourself feel right at home on your next pub visit.</p> For more information on Travel with Rick Steves - including episode descriptions, program archives and related details - visit www.ricksteves.com.
  • National Parks Dinner Party; The Great Southwest; Utah's Craziest Bike Ride
    <p>Author Terry Tempest Williams describes the various &quot;personalities&quot; of a dozen US national parks, and examines each one&#39;s contributions to the American character. Then historian Flannery Burke tells us how Arizona and New Mexico came to embody what we now think of as The Great Southwest. And travel writer Christopher Solomon enjoys getting dusty on a mountain-bike tour across southern Utah.</p> For more information on Travel with Rick Steves - including episode descriptions, program archives and related details - visit www.ricksteves.com.
  • Liechtenstein Day; Gelato; The English Moors
    <p>Hear about what it&#39;s like to celebrate National Day in Liechtenstein, one of the world&#39;s smallest &mdash; and wealthiest &mdash; countries. (Hint: Free beer at the palace!) Then learn the secret to gelato&#39;s distinctive smooth texture, and get tips for picking the best gelato shop in any Italian town. And tour guides from Britain tell us why a hike in the wild and windy English moors can be a delightfully uncrowded way to escape into nature.</p> For more information on Travel with Rick Steves - including episode descriptions, program archives and related details - visit www.ricksteves.com.
  • Rolling Blackouts; Language to Lend; Czech Beer
    <p>Reporter Sarah Glidden shares what she has learned from meeting Kurds in the Middle East. A Dutch &quot;language spotter&quot; recommends interesting foreign words we might want to borrow. Also, guides from Prague explain how sharing a beer is an important part of the social fabric in the Czech Republic.</p> For more information on Travel with Rick Steves - including episode descriptions, program archives and related details - visit www.ricksteves.com.
  • Scotland 2017; Atlas Obscura Europe
    <p>Tour guides discuss planning a great Scottish getaway from tracking down scenes from Outlander and Harry Potter to exploring the haunts of ancient Celts and Vikings. Folks from the Atlas Obscura directory of unusual places chat with Rick about their favorite quirky sites in Europe.</p> For more information on Travel with Rick Steves - including episode descriptions, program archives and related details - visit www.ricksteves.com.
  • 35 Miles from North Korea; Detroit Sightseeing; Being Slovenian
    <p>Michael Breen in Seoul explains how his fellow South Koreans regard their northern cousins. Hear how peace-loving Slovenians look at themselves compared to their neighbors. Also, enjoy yourself in Detroit as the city recovers its status as a lively arts and entertainment center for the Midwest.</p> For more information on Travel with Rick Steves - including episode descriptions, program archives and related details - visit www.ricksteves.com.
  • French Riviera; The Discovery of France; Paris Day Trips
    <p>French tour guides describe the Mediterranean highlights of the Riviera and recommend elegant day trips an hour or so outside of Paris. Plus, author Graham Robb tells us what his bicycle adventure across the French countryside taught him about the provincial character of France.</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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