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The International Living Podcast

Arts & Culture Podcasts

Not the world you see on the evening news: The International Living Podcast explores safe, welcoming, beautiful—and often little-unknown—spots on the planet. Places where you could live richer, travel more, invest for profit, and enjoy a jet-set life...for less than it costs to stay home. Host Jim Santos talks with IL’s magazine writers and with a cast of thoughtful characters living interesting lives abroad—from Penang to Porto, Cuenca to Madrid. Smart ideas for richer living in a bigger, better world.

Location:

Ireland

Description:

Not the world you see on the evening news: The International Living Podcast explores safe, welcoming, beautiful—and often little-unknown—spots on the planet. Places where you could live richer, travel more, invest for profit, and enjoy a jet-set life...for less than it costs to stay home. Host Jim Santos talks with IL’s magazine writers and with a cast of thoughtful characters living interesting lives abroad—from Penang to Porto, Cuenca to Madrid. Smart ideas for richer living in a bigger, better world.

Twitter:

@inliving

Language:

English


Episodes

Episode 57: The World's Best Places to Retire in 2024

1/3/2024
When it comes to your overseas retirement, you don’t want to go in blind. That’s why, every January, International Living publishes the world’s most in-depth, detailed resource on the subject. Put simply, it ranks the top destinations on the planet to retire to, based on the factors that matter most. How much does it cost to rent a two-bedroom home in a pleasant expat area? What does a bottle of local beer cost? Will you be able to meet other expats?, is the weather good?, will you be able to get quality medical care at a price you can afford? These are just a few of the questions that International Living puts to its team of overseas contributors every year. And that team consists of expats who live overseas, who experience that lifestyle, and who know first-hand exactly what it is that makes the difference between a successful overseas retirement and an unprepared disaster. Make no mistake, International Living’s Annual Global Retirement Index is not some throwaway listicle compiled by some bored intern scraping Google results; it’s a solid piece of invaluable research compiling countless hours of experience and judgement. If you’re enjoying the podcast, we would really appreciate it if you could leave us a review on your favorite podcast platform: https://lovethepodcast.com/internationalliving. Facebook | Instagram | Twitter | YouTube

Duration:00:36:33

Episode 56: On the Ground in Costa Rica’s Top Expat Destinations

12/20/2023
In our last podcast of the year, Jim speaks to Lifestyle Editor Seán Keenan about his recent exploratory trip to Costa Rica. He visited some of the most popular areas in the country— and talked to expats in each of them—to share what makes it one of the best places in the world to retire. If you’re enjoying the podcast, we would really appreciate it if you could leave us a review on your favorite podcast platform: https://lovethepodcast.com/internationalliving. Facebook | Instagram | Twitter | YouTube

Duration:00:39:27

Episode 55: The Many Faces of Sophisticated Argentina

12/12/2023
While the rest of us shiver in the gloom of our northern winter, expats around the world languish in the sunshine of beach resorts, highland retreats, and buzzing cities. International Living Panama Editor, Jessica Ramesch is one of them. Most of the year, she lives by the beach in the year-round sunshine of Coronado, Panama. Every day in Coronado is summer, so where does Jessica choose to go when August comes around The answer may be counterintuitive, but it has its own undeniable logic. South, to Argentina, and the snowfields of wintertime Bariloche. "The thing that Argentina has to offer me that I don't get here in Panama is that cold weather and skiing,” Jessica says. Spending three weeks in the snow, then heading to Argentina’s capital city—Buenos Aires—gave Jessica more than enough time to get under the skin of this fascinating South American country, its people, its politics, its economy, and its remarkable beauty. Host, Jim Santos, talks to Jessica Ramesch in this episode of the International Living podcast. If you’re enjoying the podcast, we would really appreciate it if you could leave us a review on your favorite podcast platform: https://lovethepodcast.com/internationalliving. Facebook | Instagram | Twitter | YouTube

Duration:00:34:41

Episode 54: The Best Places in the World to Buy Real Estate in 2024

12/6/2023
“The world keeps turning and it keeps creating opportunity,” says International Real Estate investor, Ronan McMahon. Since 2008, Ronan and his team have been scouring the globe for the best real estate deals on the planet. When they find them, they share them in Real Estate Trend Alert—Ronan’s investment advisory service. To be included, the terms are simple: this needs to be an investment that will at least double in value within five years. That’s no small task, and Ronan’s team of hand-picked experts travel and research extensively to find opportunities that they’re willing to put their name to. But there’s more to buying an international property than the financial returns. What about weather, beach access, sports facilities, culture? Every buyer has a different list of what they want in their dream home overseas. That’s why Ronan and his team have compiled the International Real Estate Index, ranking the best places in the world to buy property, via ten categories from Availability of Bank Finance, to Holding Costs, to Climate. If you’re enjoying the podcast, we would really appreciate it if you could leave us a review on your favorite podcast platform: https://lovethepodcast.com/internationalliving. Facebook | Instagram | Twitter | YouTube

Duration:00:41:57

Episode 53: Is Nicaragua Still a Viable Retirement Destination?

11/29/2023
Lifestyle Editor Seán Keenan joins the podcast from Central America, on location as he researches his next feature story for International Living magazine. His first stop is Nicaragua, once a high-profile expat destination, now slightly under the radar. Times change, fashions change, but Seán’s travels in this fascinating country bring him from the delightful Spanish Colonial streets and plazas of lakeside Granada to the upscale opulence of the region’s premier gated community—Rancho Santana. It’s a journey of discovery and contrast as podcast host, Jim Santos, speaks to roving editor, Seán Keenan in this week’s episode. If you’re enjoying the podcast, we would really appreciate it if you could leave us a review on your favorite podcast platform: https://lovethepodcast.com/internationalliving. Facebook | Instagram | Twitter | YouTube

Duration:00:39:04

Episode 52: Dance Yourself Healthy in San Miguel De Allende, Mexico

11/22/2023
A study found that there’s one physical exercise that protects from both dementia and Alzheimer’s… and it’ll give your social life a boost, too. The New England Journal of Medicine published the results of a 21-year study of senior citizens, aged 75 to 85. The researchers discovered that the only physical exercise that provided protection from both dementia and Alzheimer’s was… dancing. Whether partnered or solo, frequent dancing provided a 76% risk reduction! IL contributor Ann Kuffner tells Jim about San Miguel de Allende and the dance venues where you can practice your moves. If you’re enjoying the podcast, we would really appreciate it if you could leave us a review on your favorite podcast platform: https://lovethepodcast.com/internationalliving. Facebook | Instagram | Twitter | YouTube

Duration:00:38:07

Episode 51: $500 Sea-View Rentals in Secret Europe

11/15/2023
Jim Santos meets Norm and Kathleen Bour, nomadic seniors who spend their time adventuring around the globe on just their social security payments. With a host of tips and tricks for making a roving retirement exciting and affordable, Norm and Kathleen have much to share, particularly when it comes to the country where they spend much of their time—the almost-forgotten Mediterranean nation of Albania. With its dramatic coastline, tall mountains, cosmopolitan cities, and a low cost of living, Albania is already worth adding to your list of must-visits, but a very friendly official policy for U.S. visitors makes it one of the most welcoming places in Europe to explore. A full year’s stay, renewable, means that complicated residency paperwork isn’t an issue. And as for the $500-a-month rentals…those are just the icing on the cake. If you’re enjoying the podcast, we would really appreciate it if you could leave us a review on your favorite podcast platform: https://lovethepodcast.com/internationalliving. Facebook | Instagram | Twitter | YouTube

Duration:00:38:45

Episode 50: Affordable Real Estate and Hot Spring Baths in Rural Japan

11/8/2023
This week, podcast host Jim Santos meets Greg Goodmacher, an expat who began his live-overseas adventure over 30 years ago. Originally from New York and later, San Francisco, Greg caught the expat bug straight out of college, when teaching English, and a stint in the Peace Corps, brought him into contact with the many exotic attractions of Southeast Asia. Korea and Thailand appealed to him to different degrees, and a sojourn working in Abu Dhabi added a little variety to his experiences, but it was eventually Japan which captured his heart. Learning the local festival calendar, discovering the mountain terrain, and discovering a passion for winter sports kept Greg busy in the early years of his time in Japan. Meeting the woman who would become his wife also helped establish Japan as an essential part of his life. Add to that a deep love of the local cuisine, and an enthusiasm for onsens—the hot bath ritual—and it became clear that for Greg, Japan is where his heart lies. On the cusp of a move to a new region of Japan—one where he has easy access to winter sports, beaches, and natural hot springs, Greg shares a wealth of detail about living in Japan—from friendly neighbors who will look after your pets while you’re away, to explaining just why the real estate in Japan is so affordable. If you’re enjoying the podcast, we would really appreciate it if you could leave us a review on your favorite podcast platform: https://lovethepodcast.com/internationalliving. Facebook | Instagram | Twitter | YouTube

Duration:00:36:24

Episode 49: A Sporting Life on a Greek Island for $800 a Month

11/1/2023
This week, podcast host Jim Santos meets Francisco Huerta, an international athlete who chased his dream of playing soccer at the highest level to Europe. Soccer provided Francisco with a central theme to his expat life, but in between, discovering the heavenly beaches, the ancient ruins, and twisting medieval streets of the Greek island of Rhodes…as well as the practicalities of daily life in Greece, has proven to be a voyage of discovery and personal growth. If you’re enjoying the podcast, we would really appreciate it if you could leave us a review on your favorite podcast platform: https://lovethepodcast.com/internationalliving. Facebook | Instagram | Twitter | YouTube

Duration:00:36:36

Episode 48: A Night at the Opera—High Culture in Vienna for €15 Each

10/25/2023
This week, podcast host Jim Santos, and his wife, Rita, are in Vienna, Austria checking out the city’s historical and cultural highlights, as they make their way through Europe in their own version of the Grand Tour. Once again, in this episode, Jim himself takes to the mic. Soaking up the sights and sounds of a European city that has even more historic twists and turns than the usual, Jim navigates through the eclectic streets of Vienna, a long-time crossroads of cultures, with influences from Eastern points mingling with the more familiar nuances of Western Europe. Finding much to feast on beyond the expected schnitzel and sausages, Jim discovers a city rich with international flavor, and deeply carpeted in the glitter and magnificence of generations of power and wealth. Join Jim as he talks us through the sights, sounds and smells of Vienna, from the grand palaces of the Hapsburg empire to the glorious Baroque stylings of the Opera House; to the mirrored surrounds of the Café Savoy, to the crypt of the Austrian royal family, and much more in-between. Where to go, what to see, and how to do it all on Vienna’s efficient public transport network…it’s all included in the latest episode of the International Living Podcast. If you’re enjoying the podcast, we would really appreciate it if you could leave us a review on your favorite podcast platform: https://lovethepodcast.com/internationalliving. Facebook | Instagram | Twitter | YouTube

Duration:00:21:21

Episode 47: What We Learned From One Week in Istanbul, Turkey

10/18/2023
Jim Santos, and his wife, Rita, continue their long-delayed roving retirement plan. As Jim records this episode, he and Rita are in Istanbul, Turkey checking out the city before they head to Vienna and Prague to continue their nine-week romp through Europe. In a change to the usual format, in this episode, Jim himself takes to the mic, giving his impressions of a city that straddles two continents, maintains thousands of years of history, and bridges the Western and Eastern worlds. He shares details of where you should visit, and when. Jim’s tips and hacks on how to avoid the worst of the tourist crowds, what to look out for when you book your accommodation, and how to keep yourself safe and sane in this city of 15 million inhabitants, are invaluable preparation for a trip to Turkey’s largest city. Join Jim as he talks us through the sights, sounds, and smells of Istanbul, from the subterranean city cisterns to the glorious dome of the Hagia Sophia; across the Bosphorous Strait for lunch in another continent, to fresh pistachios and Turkish Delight at the Grand Bazaar. When to go, what to wear, and which days to avoid…it’s all included in the latest episode of the International Living Podcast. If you’re enjoying the podcast, we would really appreciate it if you could leave us a review on your favorite podcast platform: https://lovethepodcast.com/internationalliving. Facebook | Instagram | Twitter | YouTube

Duration:00:15:52

Episode 46: An Untourist’s Stroll Through Pisa and Florence

10/11/2023
This week, the International Living Podcast swoops down to the rolling hills of Tuscany, Italy. Host, Jim Santos, talks to International Living Lifestyle Editor, Seán Keenan. Seán joins the podcast fresh from a trip to the heart of the Italian region best known for its olive groves, vineyard-covered hills, centuries-old farmhouses, and art-filled cities. Florence and Pisa, where Seán spent much of his time in Italy, are among the world’s most-visited destinations. Florence, famous worldwide for its architecture and the long-lived opulence of the city’s Medici founders, has been a fixture of European tourism since the 17th century. Europe’s educated elite made the city a stopping-off point on their ‘Grand Tour’ to the antiquities of ancient Greece. Tourists are everywhere in the historic center, there to view artworks as infamous as Michelangelo’s David, or Bottecelli’s Birth of Venus. Pisa, too, groans under the weight of mass tourism. With a globally recognized icon of the modern tourism industry—the Leaning Tower—nestled in the city’s northwest corner, the footfall of international visitors is enormous. Most come to take a photo of themselves with the tower, and leave soon afterwards. It’s a missed opportunity because, overlooked by the majority of its visitors, Pisa is one of Europe’s most attractive, liveable, and pleasant cities. Florence, too, away from the crush of the tourists, is an energetic and attractive civic space, with food, wine, conviviality, and charm that rewards a deeper dive than the tourist trudge from the Duomo to the Pitti Palace. It's this ‘untourist’ experience that brought International Living to Tuscany; to search for the overlooked piazzas, cafés, bars, villages, and undiscovered corners of the region, as well as the flavors, customs, and charm that lies under the surface. It’s surprising just how easy it is to become an ‘untourist’. And it’s infinitely more rewarding than the package tour approach. Tune in for inspiration and ideas on how to make Untourist Tuscany yours. If you’re enjoying the podcast, we would really appreciate it if you could leave us a review on your favorite podcast platform: https://lovethepodcast.com/internationalliving. Facebook | Instagram | Twitter | YouTube

Duration:00:40:56

Episode 45: On the Road with Host, Jim Santos, in Greece

10/4/2023
This week, podcast host Jim Santos, and his wife, Rita, set off on their long-delayed roving retirement plan. As Jim records this episode, he and Rita are in Thessaloniki, Greece, after a great week in Athens, and are about to head to Istanbul to continue their nine-week romp through Europe. Since more and more people are opting to spend months at a time abroad instead of choosing one destination to settle down, International Living thought this would be a good opportunity to explore how Jim and Rita reached this decision, and how they prepared for roaming. Also, some of the logistics of planning that international lifestyle Jim talks about on the show. In an interesting tweak to the format, IL's Panama editor, Jessica Ramesch, hosts the show, allowing Jim to be the guest of today's podcast. If you’re enjoying the podcast, we would really appreciate it if you could leave us a review on your favorite podcast platform: https://lovethepodcast.com/internationalliving. Facebook | Instagram | Twitter | YouTube

Duration:00:30:07

Episode 44: I Want to Move Abroad, But What Do I Do With My Stuff?

9/27/2023
This week we chat to Suzan Haskins about a subject that comes up often in our mailbag, and at conferences. Understandably so. It’s one thing to pack a bag for a vacation—any fool knows how to do that—but it’s an altogether different prospect when you’re planning on moving abroad for months, years, or decades. Read Suzan's full article in the September issue of the International Living Magazine: "I Want to Move Abroad, But What Do I Do With My Stuff?" Suzan, and her husband, Dan Prescher, are experts on the business of moving overseas. They’ve lived in multiple countries, and made numerous moves. Sometimes they pack light, other times they take a more elaborate approach to transporting the possessions they can’t just throw into a backpack. Bear in mind that Dan’s a musician—he’s not going anywhere without at least a guitar. That’s a logistical challenge in itself, but it’s one that Suzan and he have risen to with experience and aplomb. Shipping containers, transporting animals, hold baggage, import/export agents, paperwork, import duties, and U-Haul trucks…Suzan’s done it all. Over the years, she’s built up a wealth of knowledge, and more importantly, an address book full of contacts. Knowing who to speak to, and who to hire makes all the difference when it comes to big decisions such as whether to bring your own car abroad with you, or if you really need to ship your old bed to your new home. But perhaps more important than any of the logistics, is Suzan’s underlying question: Do you really want to bring your old life with you when you start afresh overseas…or just the parts that mean the most to you? Whether you’re someone who moves abroad with nothing more than what you can carry on your back, or whether you want to go the whole hog with a shipping container, Suzan Haskins is just the person to explain it all. Join host, Jim Santos, as he meets her in the latest episode of The International Living Podcast. If you’re enjoying the podcast, we would really appreciate it if you could leave us a review on your favorite podcast platform: https://lovethepodcast.com/internationalliving. Facebook | Instagram | Twitter | YouTube

Duration:00:30:31

Episode 43: Living in "The Paris of South America” for $1,000 a Month

9/20/2023
This week, we're talking to International Living contributor, Greyson Ferguson, about his decision to expand his options and life experience with a move to Buenos Aires, the capital city of Argentina. Like many others, the COVID pandemic and travel lockdown prompted Greyson to evaluate his life, take a look around, and make the push to live in a way he truly wanted, rather than settle for what simply fell into his lap. Greyson’s first move was to renovate a 1960s camper and set out across the United States in search of adventure and enlightenment. With him came his dogs, and although they were a responsibility, the company and companionship they brought was more than enough to make up for any inconvenience. So much so, that when Greyson decided that it was time to look outside of the United States for the continuation of his adventures, he didn’t hesitate to bring them along. Getting the dogs to South America was a story in itself. Stressful at times, and involving a mountain of paperwork, it didn’t help that one of Greyson’s dogs was an ageing pitbull. Ageing, and gentle, but nevertheless, a breed that’s banned from many countries. It narrowed the options a little, but after a stint in Peru, Greyson and the dogs now find themselves in Argentina, enjoying the sophisticated, European-style life of Buenos Aires—sometimes called the "Paris of South America." With stylish cafés, vast outdoor markets, and with a huge range of international cuisine, life in Buenos Aires is as sophisticated as any European city. Using a currency-conversion hack known as the ‘blue dollar’ though, makes it much, much more affordable. Living large on $1,000 a month? It’s easy when you have blue dollars. In this episode, Greyson explains all. Join host, Jim Santos, as he meets Greyson Ferguson in the latest episode of Bigger Better World. Read Greyson's full article in the March issue of the International Living Magazine: "Blue Dollar" Delivers Bargain Lifestyle in Buenos Aires. If you’re enjoying the podcast, we would really appreciate it if you could leave us a review on your favorite podcast platform: https://lovethepodcast.com/internationalliving. Facebook | Instagram | Twitter | YouTube

Duration:00:37:48

Episode 42: How We Built a Successful Beach Club Business in Belize

9/13/2023
This week, we’re talking to IL Belize Correspondent, Shane Kenny, and his wife, Heather, about their decision to up sticks from their home in Atlanta and move to the Caribbean nation of Belize. With two sons at high school, and established careers in the States, there were plenty of reasons why Shane and Heather shouldn’t have taken the plunge, but fortune favors the brave, and it wasn’t long before they turned their dream of owning a beachside hospitality business became a reality. Adventurous? For sure. Hard work? Definitely. And that’s before they got hit with a pandemic lockdown in their first year of trading…. Shane and Heather were definitely not the first couple who looked around themselves one day and thought, "Let’s give it all up and go run a bar in the Caribbean." But there’s a big difference between dreaming it and doing it. Now, after lots of learning-on-the-job and hard work, they’ve made their Belize dream come true. It didn’t happen right away. In fact, their search for the perfect opportunity started in an entirely different Caribbean nation—the Dominican Republic. But in the end, it was the practical details of Belize—no currency fluctuations, a more recognizable legal structure, and above all, the fact that the official language is English—that won out. Combing the coastline in search of the ideal spot, it was almost entirely by luck that they hit upon an abandoned beach club with an almost empty pool…and realized that they’d hit pay dirt. "That's kind of the story of how we ended up here and how we ended up with what's now called Placencia Beach Club," explains Shane. "And so what we do is, we are a bar and a restaurant, but we're on the beach, and we have a pool as well, so we call it a beach club because people come not just to eat or drink, but they come kind of spend the day and relax. And so they'll hang out in the pool or on the beach or in the water." Now, with the business ticking along, and all the hassles of relocation behind them, there’s time to reflect: "Life is simpler," says Heather. "Not every aspect of life is easier, but it's so much simpler and a lot less stressful from outside influences." Join host, Jim Santos, as he meets Shane and Heather Kenny in the latest episode of Bigger, Better World. Read Heather's full article in the August issue of the International Living Magazine: We Turned an Abandoned Pool into a Booming Beach Club If you’re enjoying the podcast, we would really appreciate it if you could leave us a review on your favorite podcast platform: https://lovethepodcast.com/internationalliving. Facebook | Instagram | Twitter | YouTube

Duration:00:38:02

Episode 41: A Cycling Adventure from London to Berlin

9/6/2023
This week, the Bigger, Better World podcast takes a trip to Europe, talking to International Living contributor Sharyn Nilsen about her recent adventure traversing the continent, from London to Berlin, by bicycle. Sharyn and her husband, Tim, are no beginners when it comes to bike touring. With long-distance trips across Africa, North America, and Australia already on their resume, it was only a matter of time before the varied geography and cultures of Europe called. Full-time travelers, Sharyn and Tim split their time between exploration missions and the more settled and domestic activity of house- and pet-sitting. Bookending their bike journey across Europe with home stays in the UK, the northern hemisphere summer gave them ample time to see the sights, "Perhaps we were lucky, but we had only one rainy day. The summer weather was mostly warm and sunny without being too hot, with cool nights for a restful night’s sleep in our tent…. We rolled past rustic-looking windmills, grand old churches with functioning bell towers, and age-old castles in various stages of decay through dappled ancient forests and acres of wheat, barley, and cornfields." Independent, self-sufficient, and not bound to any strict timetable, Sharyn and Tim’s adventure allowed them to indulge themselves as they liked. With plenty of breaks, no high-mileage rides, and always a cold beer at their destination, there was no need to race through the journey. "We’re not hardcore cyclists," Sharyn states. There’s so much to see and do on the stretch between the Netherlands and Germany that it would be a shame to rush it all. On the other hand, there’s no difficulty in taking the bikes on a train to cover some distance either. That’s all part of the appeal, when there’s no set plan and no clocks to punch. Join host, Jim Santos, as he meets Sharyn Nilsen in the latest episode of Bigger, Better World. Read Sharyn's full article in the December issue of the International Living Magazine. If you’re enjoying the podcast, we would really appreciate it if you could leave us a review on your favorite podcast platform: https://lovethepodcast.com/internationalliving. Facebook | Instagram | Twitter | YouTube

Duration:00:33:24

Episode 40: Cruising the Canal du Midi in France

8/30/2023
This week, we chat with International Living contributor Kevin McGoff about his passion for France and, more specifically, his love of traversing the country via its extensive network of navigable waterways. Whether it’s a slow-paced getaway for just Kevin and his wife, Patty, or a more extensive trip with a group of friends, the rivers and canals of France open up a side of the country that’s often missed by visitors. A side where things are altogether more languid, where the slow filling and emptying of boat locks dictates the pace of travel, and where a shared glass of wine and conversation with the lock keeper is more important than deadlines or itinerary. Making new friends, learning new skills, exploring an entirely different France than the one the highways bring you to—the boating experience offers a vast range of countryside, scenery, and historical perspective on life in the heart of rural Europe. Meeting experienced boaters, as well as complete novices, Kevin and Patty have racked up a wealth of anecdotes and memories, from watching the fall colors of the Burgundy forests to getting dug out of a mudbank by the French army. ‘I would say the relaxing mode of travel,’ says Kevin, explaining what he loves about boating in France. ‘You get into this rhythm where… I liken it to a beach vacation where you have something to do because it's not terribly taxing, but you have to keep alert. So you've got a challenge, if you will, of navigating the boat, navigating the locks…. And being out in the countryside on a nice day at the end of a maybe four or five-hour cruise. There's nothing like it.’ Join host, Jim Santos, as he meets Kevin McGoff in the latest episode of Bigger, Better World. Read Kevin's full article in the June issue of the International Living Magazine: No Experience Required: Pilot a Boat on a French Canal. If you’re enjoying the podcast, we would really appreciate it if you could leave us a review on your favorite podcast platform: https://lovethepodcast.com/internationalliving. Facebook | Instagram | Twitter | YouTube

Duration:00:39:00

Episode 39: Temple-Hopping in Lampang, Thailand

8/23/2023
This week we’re talking to Rachel Devlin about her recent exploration way off the tourist trail…to the north of Thailand and the city of Lampang—the provincial capital. Though Thailand was never formally colonized by the West, its northern provinces—particularly Lampang—were heavily influenced by British and American immigrants. American Protestant missionaries arrived in the mid-to-late 19th century. At the same time, the British took advantage of the then-booming teak industry. Today, the city of Lampang—a mere 90-minute drive from Chiang Mai—heads the province of the same name. Though it’s a sprawling, modern metropolis set against a rural backdrop of rice fields and small mountains, you can still find evidence of these British teak wallahs, or loggers, around Lampang’s old town. It’s a city of traditional crafts—the local ceramics are a highlight—and ancient ways. Reflecting a clash of cultures that’s endured for centuries, the local Buddhist temples are built in a Burmese style, in some spectacular settings. In between visiting those, Rachel got to enjoy the local cuisine, night markets, vigorous hiking, and a 1930s Hollywood/Broadway connection that’s controversial to this day. But for Rachel, who’s lived in nearby Chiang Mai for years, the simple conveniences of Thai life are always the most enjoyable. Though Lampang’s history and culture is impressive, it’s also a top spot to just chill. In her own words: “This is a great place to stroll, stop for some $4 rice or noodles from a street cart, get a massage for $6, and take in the lovely old buildings.” Join host, Jim Santos, as he meets Rachel Devlin in the latest episode of Bigger, Better World. Read her full article in the August issue of the International Living Magazine: Temples, Teak Barons, and Mystical Quartz in Thailand. If you’re enjoying the podcast, we would really appreciate it if you could leave us a review on your favorite podcast platform: https://lovethepodcast.com/internationalliving. Facebook | Instagram | Twitter | YouTube

Duration:00:36:19

Episode 38: Madrid's Three Historic Culinary Gems

8/16/2023
This week, the Bigger, Better World podcast takes a trip to Spain, talking to International Living Spain Editor Sally Pederson about her recent scouting trip to the center of the country and the city of Madrid—Spain’s political…and gastronomic capital. Hailing originally from Canada, Sally’s been an expat for years, having started her overseas life in Costa Rica before making the move to Spain. She had a list of non-negotiables for her new home: efficient public transport, somewhere with a beach, and a good international airport nearby. For Sally, the city of Barcelona checked all the boxes, and she based herself there. But, as she explains in the podcast, it’s so easy, comfortable, and convenient to travel in Europe, that she’s not tied to one city. In fact, she sees Barcelona foremost as a base for her extensive travels. “Compared to North America,’ Sally says, ‘it's so cheap to travel around Europe, and it's one of the things that I love. So it's very easy and convenient. There are so many trains every day, so many flights every day. So whether internationally, within Europe, or even just within Spain, I can't even tell you how many trains leave Madrid or Barcelona or any major city. There's so many every single day.’ And that means she can explore and enjoy everything that Spain has to offer, whether that’s in her home city of Barcelona, or farther afield. That’s how she came to learn about the city of Madrid and its unbeatable cuisine and dining options. Who wouldn’t like to eat at the capital city’s oldest restaurant—which has been serving up local dishes since 1725? Or share a range of tapas with friends at a sidewalk café, or indulge in seafood paella with at Casa Labra—one of Ernest Hemingway’s favorite joints in the city? In her article for International Living magazine, and in her discussion with podcast host, Jim Santos, Sally explores what it is that makes dining, drinking, and ultimately…living in Spain such a rewarding experience for discerning Europhile expats. She paints an evocative picture of centuries-old restaurants; seasonal, regional fare; delectable tapas; unhurried atmospheres, and a commitment to the art of good living in two Spanish cities that are unrivaled for energy and sophistication. Read Sally's article here. Join host, Jim Santos, as he meets Sally Pederson in the latest episode of Bigger, Better World. If you’re enjoying the podcast, we would really appreciate it if you could leave us a review on your favorite podcast platform: https://lovethepodcast.com/internationalliving. Facebook | Instagram | Twitter | YouTube

Duration:00:36:33