DestinAsian - - DEPARTMENTS - @des­ti­nasian­magazine @DestinAsian_Mag DestinAsian.Mag DestinAsianMag

There is some­thing in­her­ently mag­i­cal about be­ing in a vast desert—per­haps it’s the in­fin­i­tes­i­mal suc­ces­sion of sand dunes march­ing off into the hori­zon, or the qui­etude and sense of awe that takes over as we sur­vey the empti­ness be­fore us: a stark, in­hos­pitable en­vi­ron­ment that puts our hu­man vul­ner­a­bil­i­ties into sharp fo­cus. I’ve al­ways been more of a “wa­ter” per­son, but read­ing ed­i­tor-in-chief Christo­pher Hill’s ac­count of his re­cent romp through Oman has me con­sid­er­ing a road trip of my own through the fas­ci­nat­ing Ara­bian coun­try. Mar­tin West­lake, a reg­u­lar con­trib­u­tor to our mag­a­zine, tagged along for the ride, shoot­ing what may be the first desert-themed cover in our 16 years of pub­li­ca­tion.

It’s also re­fresh­ing be­cause that part of the world of­ten finds it­self painted in a less fa­vor­able light—which re­minds me of the lat­est po­lit­i­cal squab­bles that re­main a headache for trav­el­ers in the Gulf coun­tries. But Oman has wisely steered clear of the ker­fuf­fle so far.

As in our cover story, the other three fea­tures ex­hort read­ers to leave the big city be­hind. For­mer DestinAsian ed­i­tor Gabrielle Lip­ton high­lights the easy­go­ing charms found on Prince Ed­ward Is­land, the small­est of Canada’s prov­inces. Penny Wat­son roves the fer­tile coun­try­side in the Aus­tralian state of Vic­to­ria, vis­it­ing a trove of restau­rants that bring the best of their lo­cal in­gre­di­ents to the din­ing ta­ble. She shows us why, on the culi­nary front, it would be a mis­take to re­strict our ex­plo­rations to Mel­bourne. Closer to home, Paul Ehrlich takes us deep into Isan, that un­der­rated north­east­ern re­gion of Thai­land, with a trio of in­ti­mate, cul­tur­ally minded re­sorts to act as his guide. Be­tween all th­ese places, I’m sure there’s plenty to add to your wish list.

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