For Bhutan, being a tiny, isolated, never-colonized country has had advantages: A united people, a common religion, an appreciation of happiness, and centuries of cultural continuity. Luckily for today’s travelers, change came late to Bhutan, so many of its traditions have survived. Today, for example, those who travel Bhutan see an abundance of evidence of the country’s thirteen traditional crafts. Especially ubiquitous are examples of the well-preserved art of textile weaving. Throughout Bhutan, in private homes, weaving villages, schools, museums, markets, festivals, and on the streets, you will see glorious examples of textiles with patterns that have remained unchanged for centuries. Two reasons for their survival are that traditional clothing is required for official and public events, and they are integral to the country’s celebrations and festivals. Western clothes may be making inroads, but look closely at the street fashion: A young woman may be wearing a t-shirt under her kira, but that traditional dress is the same as the one her grandmother wore. Its threads may be handspun silk, cotton, or yak hair, and the pattern represents the region where it was woven. Today, weaving in Bhutan is more than a craft; it’s an art that tells a story. […]
As 2014 comes to an end, the travel industry is already gearing up for another adventurous year ahead. Dr. Antonia Neubauer and Allie Almario, president and vice president of Myths and Mountains respectively, are preparing for more amazing experiences with travelers who want to get away from it all to see the beauty in everything. Here, these travel experts share what they deem as top travel trends in Asia, Southeast Asia and South America for 2015.