Strange Brew,” Roads & Kingdoms
Discovering the variety and richness of coffee culture around the world is one of my greatest pleasures in life. And Roads & Kingdoms sets forth a good read about the history of coffee, as well as the full-on nerdiness of coffee enthusiasts. —Davina Baum

Rio, With Eyes Open,” The New York Times
I loved the cover story in this weekend’s New York Times travel section. Correspondent Jodi Kantor traveled to Rio with her 7-year-old daughter and filed an honest, warts-and-all take on exploring Brazil’s second-largest city. —Julia Cosgrove

Africa’s Long Spring,” The Wilson Quarterly
The Arab Spring continues to grip our attention, but what of popular democratic movements in sub-Saharan Africa? Senegal? Ghana? Zambia? Namibia? Do the cases of Mali, Nigeria, and Somalia indicate a “democratic recession?” Steve McDonald writes: “Throughout Africa, the young, educated, and technology-savvy Africans who now make up the majority of the continent’s one billion people are demanding freedom.” —Derk Richardson

Yardbird: Hong Kong’s Yakitori Visionaries,” Food & Wine
I devoured the 35th anniversary edition of F&W, including this fun story about an western-style yakitori restaurant run by Canadians in Hong Kong. Chicken on a stick has never been so global. —Ariel Ramchandani

The Sydney Bucket List,” TimeOut Sydney
During most of my recent trip to Sydney, Australia, I had my head buried in TimeOut Sydney. I was lucky to be traveling when the February issue (which happens to be the mag’s 100th issue) was on newsstands. It included a big feature titled “100 Things to Make You Happy” in Sydney that ranged from outdoor cinemas to an underwater motorcycle that you can snorkel around. Of course, that story wasn’t published online, but I also read this condensed bucket list, which gives you the picture.  —Serena Renner 

The BIG Map Blog
Those of us who work at travel magazines have a fondness for maps. They’re excellent catalysts for wanderlust. The BIG Map Blog delivers on the promise of its name. It’s a collection of lots of historical maps, scanned at high resolution to allow for zooming in on say, the Santa Fe Railroad of 1888, or “A Good Natured Map of Alaska” from 1934, or a French map of the Holy Land from 1738. Ironically, it’s quite easy to get lost among all these maps. —Jeremy Saum

Aleph, by Paulo Coelho
Setting off to Africa, Europe and Asia via trans Siberian express, Aleph is about a personal journey and self-discovery. —Onnalee MacDonald 

After Syria:  If the Assad regime falls, can Hezbollah survive?” The New Yorker
Filkins reports on the precarious position of Hezbollah of the Assad regime falls in Syria. I came away reading it with a much better understanding of Hezbollah and the politics between Israel and Lebanon than I had before, and, like most of Filkins’s work, it’s a great read. —Ariel Ramchandani

Photo by Aubrey on