With 2009 already rushing in, we wanted to take a moment to reflect on your favorite online stories over the past 370 days. So here they are, the most popular stories of 2008. (Over the last year we also revamped our magazine site's RSS feed to include photos, illustrations, and more text to read.)
10. The Adventure Life with Steve Casimiro: Apple's Macbook Air
This review of the “sexiest laptop ever” got more user comments than any other article this year. Note: you have to be a tech geek to understand most of them.
9. 6,000 Miles to Moscow
Contributing Editor McKenzie Funk hitchhiked the length of the Trans-Siberian highway to paint a picture of globalization. Photographer Aaron Huey’s images are gorgeous.
8. Peru: Hell and Back
An oldie but a goodie, Contributing Editor Kira Salak's story of her spirit quest in the Amazon is an amazing tale of transformation (and even has something for the hallucinogen crowd).
7. 50 Top Ecolodges
Global Travel Editor Costas Christ (who writes Beyond Green Travel) gave us a list of the most spectacular green base camps on the planet—and, surprisingly, there's something for almost every budget. We made a really handy world map to help you find them.
6. Life’s an Adventure Reader Photo Contest
We love your photos. Here are some great ones.
5. Best of the National Parks
This year, we found the most beautiful places and park adventures to deliver an authentic American summer escape. We also georeferenced each spot so you can find them.
4. Have You Seen This Croc?
As far as we know, Gustave the man-eating croc of Burundi is still on the loose (or the giant, elderly Nile croc died a quite death in obscurity). This true story is quite similar to the fictional thriller, Primeval, which speaks to its ongoing audience. Photographer Bobby Model’s photos of the Rusizi River delta region are quite impressive.
3. Photo Gallery: First In
These are some of the best adventure photos to pass across our photo editors’ desks. They don’t disappoint.
2. Where to Live and Play: The Next Generation of Adventure Towns
Boulder, Austin, Jackson, yep, all great adventure towns. Our picks this year, however, are part of a burgeoning group of great places to live—and they are smart investments in times like these. Plus, our special wallpaper feature will give you instant adventure town gratification.
1. The Best Adventure Travel Companies on Earth
There’s nothing like it anywhere—a travel tool that helps you find excellent tour operators based on our experts' ratings, from quality of service to environmental practices. Search by whatever suits you—activity, destination, ratings categories. We’re actually unveiling the 2009 update this week. Stay tuned!
Was there a story we published this year that you really enjoyed? Let us know.