Travel Content and Cultural Sensitivity: How Should You Depict Other Cultures?

After returning from a trip, travellers are usually consumed by an overwhelming desire to tell everyone about the amazing experience they have had. This is what a travel writer is paid to do in the most eloquent way possible. However, it can also be the hardest part to master when it comes to depicting and representing other cultures.

Cultural sensitivity should be paramount when writing travel content, but it is often sorely overlooked. Mariellen Ward of the Breathedreamgo travel blog has discussed the dangers of cultural imperialism (or the belief that your way of life is better) in travel writing, while photographer Bani Amor has criticised colonialism in travel literature.

When writing about location, ethnicity and society, there are certain to be complicated politics that come into play. Although there’s no one-size-fits-all phrasebook to help travel writers avoid all controversy in their content, there are helpful tricks for traversing this complicated terrain. Scroll down to read the advice of the World Words team.

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Our Travels: Lisbon, Portugal

Here at World Words, it’s not just writing about travel that gets our pulses racing – we’re pretty keen on actually travelling, as well. At least one of us is always on the go, exploring a new (to us) and exciting corner of the globe.

As travel writers, we love to share our adventures with the wider world, which is what this Our Travels blog series is all about. We’ve covered plenty of places already, from Tallinn in Estonia to Vancouver Island in Canada to the Finger Lakes in the United States. And those are just a few of our most recent posts – here’s the full OT archive.

This month, our intrepid staff content editor Eilidh shares the highlights from her recent summer trip to the pretty Portuguese capital of Lisbon. For Eilidh, it’s a city that benefits from repeat visits. Scroll on down to find out why…

Eilidh on the roof of Évora's cathedral.

Eilidh on the roof of the UNESCO-listed Cathedral of Évora.

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Our Best Autumn-Themed Travel Content

We hate to begin with bad news, but there’s no avoiding it: summer is almost over. However, rather than dwelling on the negatives (bye bye sunshine, sandals and copious amounts of ice cream), let’s all focus on the positives.

Autumn is approaching and there are lots of exciting things on the horizon. If you are based in the UK, you can expect a flurry of festivals coming your way, including the UK-wide Museums at Night and London Open House. Not familiar with these events? You can find out more by reading our write-ups of previous editions below. There are also rumours of an autumn heatwave arriving on UK shores. And though we have learnt not to put too much faith in the predictions of the Met Office, we have included our article on Devon’s top picnic spots just in case.

And that’s just the start…

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Our Travels: Stockholm, Sweden

Summer is well under way in the northern hemisphere, so the sun-loving members of the World Words team are busy planning their warm-weather travel adventures. But there’s still enough room for nostalgia for chillier times.

In this popular Our Travels blog series, World Words writers and editors take a look back at some of their most memorable experiences abroad. We’re a very well-travelled bunch, so you can read about our trips everywhere from Madeira to New York State and from India to Belarus. And they’re just some of the most recent excursions.

This month, the article comes from staff content editor Eilidh, who looks back on a trip she took earlier this year to snowy Stockholm. From fine food to memorable museums, here’s her take on a city break in the Swedish capital…

Eilidh explores the frozen landscape surrounding the Artipelag arts centre

Eilidh explores the frozen landscape surrounding the Artipelag arts centre.

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