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Adventure Magazine

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Adventure Know-It-All
Ask Adventure

Q: I am planning a trip to Southeast Asia. how concerned should I be about terrorism?

The August bombing in Jakarta, Indonesia, last year's tragedy in Bali, an insurgency in the Philippines, and arrests of suspected terrorists in Malaysia make many travelers leery of the region with good reason. However, "I'd reckon Southeast Asia is safe all around," says Rolf Potts, an Adventure contributor and the author of the gonzo guidebook Vagabonding. "Just stay away from the southern Philippines, the ethnic border wars in Myanmar, the bandit and land-mine areas of Cambodia—oh, and parts of Indonesia, such as Aceh, can be dodgy as well. So, what's left? Well, here's a counterintuitive tip from Potts: Go to Bali. "Right now it should be very safe—and cheap." When planning your itinerary, check the State Department's travel advisories, along with information produced by Reuters and publisher Travelers' Tales. Once you've arrived, chat with ex-pats, taxi drivers, and shopkeepers for local intel.

What do you want to know? Ask Adventure >>

Q: What's the best bike touring route across the united states?

Well, it's a big country—there's no single answer. "There are thousands of potential combinations," says Mike Deme of the not-for-profit Adventure Cycling Association. The organization proposes three cross-country trips: the cooler, wooded Northern Tier; the Transamerica, which cuts through the heartland; or the deserts and bayous of the Southern Tier. Adventure Cycling can send you waterproof maps that break the 3,000-plus-mile (4,828-plus-kilometer) routes into segments ($11 each; $67 to $114 per set) and include information on everything from history to where to grab a hot meal. If you'd rather piece together your own path, the ACA also publishes the Cyclists' Yellow Pages—a state-by-state listing of resources. Web sites maintained by most states' departments of transportation also provide useful information, though the quality varies.

What do you want to know? Ask Adventure >>

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Related Web Site

Expedition Advisor
Read explorer-tested tips from adventurer Jon Bowermaster.

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September 2003

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