Program 630a: Portugal's Art and Architecture; Breakfast With Polygamists; Jack London's Yukon

Release Date: 11-25-2023


Tour guides from Lisbon paint audio pictures of the vivid art that colors the streets of Portugal, then a journalist and former diplomat tells of how curiosity led him to meet with healers in the jungles of Nicaragua and Belize. And travel writer Richard Grant explains how a particularly bitter Yukon winter in Dawson City inspired Jack London to write one of his most famous tales of the North. Plus, Rick's in-house art expert gives us a close-up appreciation of Leonardo's Mona Lisa.


  • Cristina Duarte, tour guide based in Lisbon  
  • Rafael Pereira, tour guide based in Lisbon
  • Travel writer Dave Seminara, author of "Breakfast with Polygamists: Dispatches from the Margins of the Americas" (Wanderlust Press)
  • Travel writer Richard Grant, author of "The Deepest South of All: True Stories from Natchez, Mississippi" (Simon and Schuster)
  • Gene Openshaw, co-author of "Rick Steves Europe's Top 100 Masterpieces:  Art for the Traveler" (Avalon Travel)

Additional Info

  • The Rick Steves online guide to visiting Portugal
  • The Calouste Gulbenkian art museum in Lisbon comes highly recommended by listener Patrick and the guides.
  • Rick writes about the fado music scene in Lisbon in his book of travel essays, For the Love of Europe. Rick reads from that entry in an extra to this week's show.
  • Cristina Duarte's website includes information about visiting Lisbon, and her tour services.
  • Rafael Pereira provides small group tours of the Jeronimos Monastery Church in Lisbon.
  • Dave Seminara writes about his travels in the Americas in his book "Breakfast with Polygamists." His website includes information about his 2011 book, "Mad Travelers: A Tale of Wanderlust, Greed and the Quest to Reach the Ends of the Earth."
  • Dave posted his interview with Belizean bush doctor Harry Guy on YouTube.
  • The free Friday night Rosine Barn Jamboree is held in the Kentucky hometown of bluegrass music legend Bill Monroe. It closes for the winter from Mid-December until mid-March.
  • Richard Grant wrote about visiting Dawson City in the Yukon to investigate the activities of author Jack London during the Klondike gold rush, in Smithsonian magazine in November 2019.
  • Dawson City, Yukon Territory lies at the confluence of the Yukon and Klondike Rivers, and was the setting for the Klondike Gold Rush.
  • Richard also lived in Natchez, Mississippi to learn what makes the town distinctive, which he writes about in his book "The Deepest South of All."
  • The Louvre museum in Paris lets you view Mona Lisa online, and will have information on when the Covid-19 pandemic conditions will allow the museum to re-open.
  • Rick's latest collaboration with Gene Openshaw is Europe's Top 100 Masterpieces.

Program Extras

More with Rafael Pereira - Portuguese tour guide Rafael Pereira tells Rick more about the highly-recommended Gulbenkian art museum in Lisbon. (runs 1:21)

More about fado - Rick tells us about the first time he experienced fado music in Portugal, in a reading from his book "For the Love of Europe." (runs 3:45)