Who could be better to start our new Slow Travel column than Dervla Murphy? She never goes anywhere in a hurry, preferring a bicycle or a bus to an aeroplane. She has travelled extensively through Persia, Pakistan, Afghanistan, Africa, the Balkans, Tibet and lately Siberia. Generally travelling alone, eschewing mobile phones and email connections, she writes up her journeys on a typewriter which she carries with her at all times. She is certainly the doyenne of slow travel.

This column is partly a response to the mainstream ‘mini-break’ mentality, which is less of a rest and more of a rush – ...


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