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Research can be fun and exciting, especially when watching actual videos of places you plan to visit. We recommend watching travel shows, documentaries, movies and docudramas featuring dramatized reenactments of actual events helping you understand the importance of famous historical sites and events.
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Travel Shows, Documentaries & History Pre-Travel

One of the best ways to research a trip is to watch Travel Shows and Documentaries to learn about travel destinations, activities and history.

Researching your trip will help you plan your travel route as well as reveal things to see and do.  Our advice is to not simply plan to show up not knowing anything about the locations you are visiting.  There are often hidden gems you will never know about without first spending a little time researching.  You don't want to spend time somewhere only to return home to find you missed something important that was right in front of you.

Interesting and important artwork and other items can be found all around Europe; in places you would never expect.  There is a church in Bruges Belgium that houses one of Michelangelo's sculptures - 'Mother with Child'.  You may not expect to find an original Michelangelo here and may completely pass it by without ever knowing it was there if you did not do your research.

As Europe's history goes back thousands of years, take some time to research the places you will visit to learn about the importance and historical significance.

If you are interested in WWII, history is everywhere.  Take time to learn and contemplate what really happened at various locations.  When you are there, reflect on the events that transpired.  A popular place for tourists and locals in Munich Germany that is not to be missed is the famous Hofbrauhaus Beer Hall.  Did you know this was one of the places where Hitler gave his first speeches?

Hofbrauhaus Beer Hall - Munich, Germany

In February 1920, Hitler and the National Socialists held their very first meeting at Hofbrauhaus in Munich. During this gathering in the Festival Room, Hitler presented the Nazi Party 'Twenty Five Point Program' (a political manifesto outlining the party's philosophy and mission).  The Hofbrauhaus is also where Hitler publicly denounced the Jews and gave his infamous "Why We Are Anti-Semites" speech. In fact, the Hofbrauhaus played such a central role in Hitler's rise to power that they would celebrate the founding of the Nazi party here every year on it’s anniversary.

If you have cable or satellite TV, you may have the Travel Chanel where you will find shows such as Travel with Samantha Brown.  Some of the best travel shows out there are Rick Steve' Europe and Smart travels with Rudy Maxa; both can be seen on your local PBS station.  If you have Netflix or Amazon Prime, many other travel shows are available.

You will find shows dedicated to travel locations as well as ones focused on sports, food and other activities.  Every travel show is unique and will cover different information and activities.  In fact, different shows on the same location may have a different focus and present entirely different information.  No show will cover everything and you will no doubt discover things on your own that were never mentioned in any show.

Travel Shows & Documentaries
Rick Steves' Europe
Rick Steve's travel shows are some of the best around.  They are informative and entertaining giving you a perspective on what to see and do as well as a focus on museums and history.

Travel DVDs and Blue-ray

All the travel shows are available for purchase at a great rate - we think the best available anywhere.

You may purchase DVDs and Blue-rays directly on the website and often on PBS during specials.  Purchased on PBS, a portion of the money goes to support public television.

Individual DVDs can be found on the website for around $10-$20 for an entire season of shows.  For example, the 2015-2016 DVD contains 12 shows for 6 hours of viewing.  The best deal is to purchase the entire boxed set catalog of shows for around $65 providing 63 hours of viewing.

We own the entire set of shows and highly recommend purchasing a copy for yourself.

Watching the shows prior to planning a trip will give you ideas on what to see and do.  Even when not planning a trip, the shows are fun and entertaining to watch at anytime.

Rudy Maxa's World
Rudy Maxa, one of America’s premier consumer travel experts, is host and executive producer of “Rudy Maxa’s World,” the Emmy Award winning, public television travel series featuring destinations as diverse as Korea, Argentina, South Africa, Tuscany, and Thailand.
Smart Travels with Rudy Maxa
Host Rudy Maxa models hassle-free ways of getting to great places, discovering the world’s vitality and character, and plotting memorable, independent trips. Maxa, a well-known travel personality, writer and lecturer, is an MSNBC business travel columnist, a Pulitzer Prize nominated reporter and the original host of public radio’s "The Savvy Traveler."

He shows viewers how to travel smart and take charge of their own trips. The itineraries lead into the tourist-savvy destinations first and then beyond, making travel easy for first-timers and anyone who can read a map, browse a guidebook, pack lite, and enjoy good wines and food. Smart Travels motivates independent travel and appeals to armchair travelers. These are real trips with precise you-are-there details. In every episode, Rudy highlights a manageable itinerary of famous spots and off-the-beaten-path surprises.

One note, Rudy does tend to stay and highlight higher end accommodations which may not be as economical as other locations especially when traveling on a budget.

Travel With Kids
Award-winning television series Travel With Kids® educates families about the people and places of the world by immersing in the history, culture and nature of a destination while featuring lots of family-friendly fun and adventure along the way. With 85 episodes under their belt, Travel With Kids® imparts expert family travel advice while entertaining with kid-friendly antics and high-flying adventure. From the glaciers of Alaska to the wilds of the Amazon, from diving to depths to climbing to heights, Travel With Kids® explores the remote corners of the globe meeting locals, trying new foods, dancing in festivals, discovering history, climbing through nature and more!
Journalist Joseph Rosendo likes to recall a quote from Mark Twain at the end of each episode of his Emmy Award-winning television series: "Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry, and narrow-mindedness." Embracing that philosophy, "Travelscope" leads viewers on journeys to the world's most exotic locations with the goal of filling in the missing link between cultures. Rosendo provides not only insights on the numerous places he explores, but important travel information for the conscientious globe-trotter.
Burt Wolf: Travels & Traditions
Award-winning journalist Burt Wolf leads viewers in educational jaunts around the globe in this series that combines the joy of traveling with related explorations of history, culture and cuisine. In each unique location that he visits, Wolf reveals the influences of foreign traditions, investigates its past, and explores the architecture, food and customs. From tiny Ellis Island to the considerably larger Sea of Cortez, Wolf's relaxed personal style keeps the trips lively, informative and entertaining.
Samantha Brown

Samantha Brown's Place to Love

Samantha Brown has visited dozens of countries, hundreds of cities and countless hotels around the world.  She gives and entertaining and interesting perspective on travel.
Travel Man Richard Ayoade attempts to visit all the top tourist attractions in various cities in a 48-hour period. Richard hates long, boring holidays so he challenges himself to make trips as efficient as possible. He devises a plan to ensure that he makes every stop on his site-seeing journey. Each episode sees Richard travelling with a different companion to places such as Iceland, Barcelona, Istanbul and Marrakech. Celebrities taking on the fast-paced travel challenge with Richard include Kathy Burke, Adam Hills, Jessica Hynes and Stephen Mangan.
Travels with Darley
Emmy Award-nominated host Darley Newman travels with locals to experience the history, food, music and art of exciting locations around the world.
Somebody Feed Phil Philip Rosenthal is perhaps best known as being the creator of long-running sitcom "Everybody Loves Raymond," but since that show went off the air he has gotten more on-camera exposure. In this series, he takes viewers on a goodwill eating tour of the world. Rosenthal -- joined by friends and family -- visits cities that include Tel Aviv, Mexico City, New Orleans and Bangkok to get a taste of the local cuisine and culture at each stop on his journey.