Travel the Globe from Bhutan to Nicaragua in Season 7 of Joseph Rosendo’s Travelscope

KQED presents the new season of Joseph Rosendo’s Travelscope with 13 episodes featuring global adventures in Bhutan, Japan, Taiwan, Nicaragua, Mexico and more!

Joseph Rosendo’s Travelscope transports viewers across the planet to such exotic destinations as Japan’s little-visited Ogasawara islands, located more than 600 miles from the mainland and comprised of people with American roots, as well as two programs from the mountain kingdom of Bhutan, a country where its most important product is its peoples’ “gross national happiness.” Closer to home Joseph samples the California-style pleasures on hand for travelers to Los Cabos, Mexico and enters into a brave new world of travel in Nicaragua, a country recovered from civil war and ready to thrill visitors with its natural wonders. The series also highlights Asian locales such as Hong Kong and Tokyo while returning to Europe to cast the spotlight on Switzerland’s Matterhorn and adventures along the border between Germany and Poland.

Joseph Rosendo's Travelscope logo

Joseph Rosendo and his team head into their seventh season with five Emmy nominations, one Emmy win and 20 Telly Awards. Yet, as wonderful as awards are, far more impressive is the ongoing recognition the travel series receives from its viewers. “I love, love, love the show!” e-mails one. “Your show presents an intimate view of magical places and how they touch your spirit in a personal way,” says another.

With 90 episodes distributed by American Public Television to public television stations, Joseph Rosendo’s Travelscope persists to persevere in creating one of the most entertaining, informative and thoughtful programs on television. “I look forward to seeing more of your shows as you continue to open our minds and expand our hearts,” posts a viewer on Facebook. “It’s wonderful to know, that our endeavor makes a difference in our viewers’ lives,” says host, director and writer Joseph Rosendo, “Every day I am thankful and grateful for the gift of this opportunity!”

Among his many awards, Rosendo has been recognized numerous times by the Society of American Travel Writers Foundation’s Lowell Thomas Awards and has received the Medaille d’Or du Tourisme from the French Government, Taiwan’s Tourism Award and the Travel Industry Association of Canada’s Globe and Mail Travel Media Award for Excellence in Travel Journalism.  Joseph remains committed to presenting his viewers quality travel experiences that feature his culturally-sensitive and personal perspective.

Host/Writer/Director: Joseph Rosendo
Producer: Julie Rosendo
Presenting Station: KQED, San Francisco
U.S. Distributor: American Public Television
Underwriting: No Jet Lag, San Antonio Convention & Visitors Bureau
Local Underwriting: available with national non-compete

Publicity & PR Contact

Julie Rosendo, julie@travelscope.net
310-455-7164 (office), 310-482-1052 (cell)

Social Media & Website

Download the Season 7 Social Media Toolkit!
Website: http://travelscope.net
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/travelscope
Twitter: http://twitter.com/#!/JosephRosendo
Program Guide Article: Travelscope 700 Article (pdf)

Season 7 Episode Descriptions

#701 – The Many Faces of Los Cabos, Mexico
Los Cabos is actually two resorts:  Cabo San Lucas, at the tip of the Baja California peninsula, and San Jose del Cabo, 23 miles north along the coast. Joseph covers both and the sea that binds them – the Sea of Cortez – on his Los Cabos, Mexico adventure. Activities include whale watching and seaside dining, hiking through the desert to hidden waterfalls and swimming with dolphins. Besides taking part in the fun-and-sun experiences like fishing and snorkeling, he also heads out to the Baja Peninsula’s outback and meets ex-pat farmers and artists living off the grid. During this episode Joseph proves that there’s more to Los Cabos than just a place “Where the Land Ends and the Party Begins.”

#702 – Hong Kong – A City of Festivals
Hong Kong may be Asia’s World City, yet its people still cherish their tradition and the richness it brings their lives. In this new Hong Kong episode, Joseph returns for the annual Dragon Boat Festival. He discovers the festival is more than a race as it honors the integrity and devotion of poet, Qu Yuan, who sacrificed himself rather than live in a corrupt world. As part of the cultural celebration he makes traditional rice dumpling, learns the myths behind the dragon boat legend and design and speaks with participants in the local races on Lamma Island. On Cheung Chau, one of Hong Kong’s 263 islands, he greets the early morning fishing boats, witnesses the islander’s art of fish ball making, climbs through a UNESCO reserve and relaxes on the beach. During his Hong Kong stay, the 15th anniversary of the British handover of Hong Kong to China is also celebrated in a spectacular, unforgettable explosion of pyrotechnics.

#703 – Nicaragua – Culturally Rich and Naturally Beautiful
Joseph visits Nicaragua and discovers the untouched beauty of the land and a population ready to embrace travelers. In spite of a history of trials and tribulation, today Nicaraguans are a people filled with good cheer and gifted with open hearts. Long overlooked by tourists, the country has preserved what is a treasure chest full of surprising attractions. While Nicaragua owes its cultural vitality to its Spanish roots, its natural gems are ageless. From volcanic landscape to teeming rivers and untrammeled rainforests, the program reveals a country that is a traveler’s dream. Grenada is a colonial gem, Masaya a city of artisans, the Rio San Juan an avenue to adventure and the 640,000 acre Rio Maiz National Park a world treasure. Joseph touches on Nicaragua’s troubled past, celebrates its free spirit and marvels at its unspoiled nature and abundant wildlife.

#704 – Berlin and Western Poland – Over the Borderline
In a show that begins in Berlin and ends in Poznan, where the Polish state began, Joseph travels in the German-Polish border region and is captivated by the beautiful structures, historic traditions and respected customs. He is also aware of what time and events have stolen. In Berlin the story unfolds as Joseph takes a Trabi car tour of the city and pauses at Checkpoint Charlie. At the East Side Gallery, where the Wall still stands, he stops to honor the Wall’s victims at the Wall Memorial. For a ride on the natural side he bikes to the nearby royal town of Potsdam, site of the famous conference, where in the Dutch Quarter he slows down to enjoy Gemütlichkeit, the good life. His journey across the borderline in Poland brings him to town after town, where the ever shifting Polish/German nationalities spotlight Polish national pride and epic perseverance. He enjoys the rural countryside in a mosaic of activities from river boating in Wroclaw, riding in a steam locomotive in Wolsztyn and celebrating ceramic making in Boleslawiec. As he tours through this resurrected and revitalized region, he is reminded of the resilience of human beings and their ability to, Phoenix-like, rise from their ashes again and again.

#705 – Zermatt, Switzerland – Under the Shadow of the Matterhorn
Joseph heads to Zermatt to capture Switzerland’s natural majesty at the foot of the country’s most iconic mountain – the Matterhorn. With the glorious monolith ever in view, he hikes, climbs, rides and skis along an alpine landscape that takes the breath away and captures the imagination. His travels allow him to join in the yearly Folk Festival which features a parade through car-free Zermatt with 50 different folklore groups, as well as performances by more than 1,200 dancers, yodelers and musicians. During his stay he discovers that the Matterhorn’s towering presence is only equaled by the heights Zermatters go to to make sure your visit is a memorable one.

#706 – Montreal, Quebec, Canada – Bonjour, Montréal
“Bonjour” means good day in French and it is always a good day in the French speaking Canadian province of Quebec, especially in the lively cosmopolitan city of Montréal. By taking to Montréal’s streets, neighborhoods, natural places and waterways, Joseph discovers that joie du vivre is not just a French phrase; it’s a way of life in Montréal. And summer is the time for celebrating. From music and dance to fireworks and circus acts, festivals abound! In addition, to the official celebrations every one of the scores of cultural neighborhoods throws a party! Extraordinary markets, majestic cathedrals, trendy cafes, the Latin quarter, a 70’s era drum circle, activities on the St. Lawrence and warm fun-loving people all add up to a joyful time in Montréal.

#707 – Tokyo, Japan – Celebrating the Past and Present
Like every other first time visitor,Tokyo’s idiosyncratic pop culture, flashy neon-lights, garish billboards and hoards of people threaten to overwhelm Joseph’s sensibilities, yet it doesn’t take long for this episode to find its cultural center. Ancient temples, revered practices, natural beauty and graceful personal exchanges take the lead as this episode unfolds. On his Tokyo journey Joseph learns that while the glitz and glamor of modern Tokyo excites the senses, the heart and soul of the Japanese is found in their ancient customs and honored traditions.

#708 – The Bonin/Ogasawara Islands – A Land Far, Far Away
On the Bonin or Ogasawara Islands Joseph is reminded that travel is a treasure hunt. Even though one is told where the riches are buried, the real gems have to be discovered on their own. On this voyage to Tokyo’s most distant possessions – more than 600 miles and 25 hours by ferry from the mainland – Joseph partakes of kayaking, snorkeling, trekking and whale watching. Yet, in spite of all the activities, he discovers that interactions with the islanders and what one learns by exploring their heritage are the most cherished souvenirs. His personal discoveries among the islanders, whose roots lie in an American past, open up a world still shrouded in mystery and little-known to the casual day tripper.

#709 – Bhutan – Part 1 – Gross National Happiness
Travel is a life-changing experience, though often these changes come when least expected. Joseph heads to the Kingdom of Bhutan, a devout Buddhist country, fully aware of the possibilities for enlightenment that Bhutan offers him and his viewers. His trip through the “Land of the Thunder Dragon” begins in Paro with a conversation with an esteemed Buddhist master and an invitation to watch a local thangka (spiritual art) artist at work. From there he travels to the Bhutan capital of Thimphu where he is confronted by the modern pressures that ancient Bhutan faces as it strives to preserve and promote its cultural heritage, pristine environment and the “Gross National Happiness” of its people. In dzongs and monasteries, in shops and schools, in valleys and on mountaintops, every experience becomes a journey of discovery. And in a country where the traveler is surrounded by prayer – prayer flags, prayer wheels, prayer walls, sacred memorials and historic monasteries – every encounter is a blessing.

#710 – Bhutan – Part 2 – Land of the Thunder Dragon
Joseph’s Bhutan adventure continues as he heads east over 14,000 foot mountain passes to the Phobjikha Valley to witness the graceful antics of the rare and endangered Black-Necked Crane. While the cranes are breathtaking in their elegance and beauty, his overnight stay in a local guest house and unexpected invitation to join villagers constructing their neighbors’ adobe home proves most heart-warming and inspirational. He travels to Bumthang, the spiritual heart of Central Bhutan, where he traverses a challenging road to the annual Ngang Lhankhang “Swan Monastery” festival. Music, dancing, singing, chanting, gambling, archery — the festival offers the “middle path” between spiritual and secular activities and Joseph joys in them all. After two weeks of journeying through the wildness and magnificence of the Bhutan Himalayas he comes to realize that it is the Bhutanese smiles, easy laughter, fearlessness and willingness to share their lives that is the defining character of the people.

#711 – A San Antonio Christmas
San Antonio is a festival town and Christmas is a most festive time of year. Joseph joins the locals and visitors to celebrate the season along San Antonio’s famous river walk surrounded by songs, decorations and plenty of holiday cheer. Yet San Antonio is more than the River Walk, and Christmas in San Antonio means more than twinkling lights. In San Antonio, faith is real and “Feliz Navidad” is heard more often than “Merry Christmas.” So, Joseph explores the city’s spiritual roots at festive events like Mission San Jose’s Mirachi Mass, as well as Christmas and Chanukah events held at the historic La Villita in the Arneson River Theater. The real meaning of Christmas is most evident when he gathers with San Antonio families in their homes to honor their heritage and practice their customs in traditional ceremonies such as the Tamalada – holiday tamale making – and in the city’s San Fernando Cathedral at the midnight Serenada for the Virgin of Guadalupe.

#712 – Taiwan Lantern Festival
Joseph, a winner of the 2013 Taiwan Tourism Festival Awards, deepens his understanding of Taiwan and its people by criss-crossing the island during the Taiwan Lantern Festival. A celebration of light, culture and tradition, the festival is a Chinese holiday more than 2,000 years old. Joseph discovers that while the Taiwan Lantern Festival has its electric side,  it also values the human touch. While the festival showcases the country’s modern, technological side, it also honors its historic customs and traditions. Joseph explores these cultural connections at the national display of lanterns in Hsinshu, in historic temples and at street-side puppet shows, by enjoying traditional foods and, in the mountain district of Pingshi, by joining in the poignant release of thousands of sky lanterns which carry the wishes and dreams of locals and visitors heavenward.

#713 – La Joie de Vivre in Quebec City, Canada
Joseph heads to Quebec City, the only walled city north of Mexico, for a lively cultural adventure among the French-speaking Québécois. The city offers so many attractions that it’s hard for Joseph to squeeze them all in. Yet, half the pleasure is in the trying as Joseph strolls the village’s atmospheric streets, joins into the colorful night life, samples world-famous cuisine, savors the area’s natural beauty and generally celebrates La joie de vivre – the joy of living – with the largest Francophone population outside of France. Vive les Québécois! Vive la Ville de Quebec!

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