After 11 award-winning years and nearly 100 issues, I say goodbye to my Real Travel column in National Geographic Traveler (the last one is below). No worries, though--there will be more real travels to come on this blog, and eventually over at daisannmclane.com. So stay tuned. (click the image for a larger-type version.)  ...

The deep, dark secret of Hong Kong's world famous eating culture is this: Nobody likes Chinese banquet food. That's the topic I tackle in this month's National Geographic Traveler magazine--my article is part of their terrific new all-food issue.   “Banquet food is always too salty, too rich and too greasy. And the dishes are always more or less the same.” This is not a person speaking, it is actually the translation of a Cantonese dialogue I had to memorize from an early lesson (“At The Banquet”)  in my language classes. Little did I know how useful the phrases in this chapter would...

  I split my year between Hong Kong and New York, and just got back to my Brooklyn apartment a couple of weeks ago. Of course I'm feeling discombobulated--brutal jet lag and all--but I think that's a good thing. One of the advantages of never completely settling into a place is that you never get a chance to stop seeing it with fresh eyes. That's the great gift that traveling gives all of us. Even (especially) when we're in the most familiar surroundings, we can still feel the thrill of discovery. At home, we're tourists. (Apologies to new wave rockers, the Gang...

My latest Real Travel column, "Parting is Such Sweet Sorrow" has just been posted on the National Geographic Traveler website. It's also in the magazine's May/June issue--on newsstands now. Leaving is one of the most emotional experiences I have as a traveler. As the old song goes, I "Never can say goodbye...

a jar of genuine American Skippy peanut butter sells for $58.60 (about $8) in Hong Kong!A couple of years ago, a fellow American expat told me about a little-known basement-level supermarket here in Hong Kong called Gateway, that sells nothing but brand-name American supermarket staples, and junk food, to homesick expats. I tucked that information away in case I ever woke up in Hong Kong with a craving for Cocoa Puffs or Kraft's Macaroni and Cheese. But it hasn't happened. In fact, I spend an unhealthy amount of time wandering the aisles of Hong Kong's giant gourmet emporium, CitySuper, where...

The other day, on a beautiful morning in Hong Kong, I decided to go and have a walk and a late breakfast in Kowloon City, an old neighborhood of low-rise buildings across the harbor from where I live. As I mentioned in my Real Travel column in this month's National Geographic Traveler, I'm big on walking as a way to really get to know a place. Kowloon City is well worth exploring, for it has a fascinating history. In the 19th and 20th centuries, it was the site of a lawless, walled state-less enclave within the British Colony, where gangsters...