Friday, February 10, 2017

What is my most favorite place in the world?

Confucio,

The question I get more often than any other is "what is my favorite place in the world?

I understand why people ask it, but there really is no good answer. When you visit somewhere, you have an experience. Your experience might be good or bad depending on factors such as at the time of year, the weather, the people you meet, and random events which occur during your trip. Two people on the same itinerary, staying at the same hotels, might have totally different experiences if they arrive on different days.

I mention this because of a trip I took last November to Churchill, Manitoba to photograph polar bears. Churchill is a sub-arctic region and in November it's cold. The area there is totally flat and what vegetation exists is nothing more than scrawny trees and bushes. We spent almost two weeks confined to vehicles, and we had limited water for bathing.

If what I described doesn't sound like a great experience, you'd be wrong. My time in Churchill was one of the best experiences I've had in 10 years of traveling around the world. I saw polar bears, arctic foxes, and snowy owls.

If you were to visit any other time of the year, you would have a totally different experience. You might experience the cold without the polar bears, or you might experience mosquitos….without polar bears. Likewise, a trip to a tropical island can turn horrendous if you wind up in the middle of a hurricane. 

What made my trip to Churchill great wasn't the "place" per se. It was the time of year, the people I was with, and what we experienced. 

If I'm asked what my favorite "place" is, I might not list Churchill, Manitoba, but I would list my polar bear experience as one of my favorite of all time.

Check out my latest photo essay to see for yourself my trip to Cape Churchill and what made it so special

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