Editor and archaeologist Kristin Romey has reported on—or excavated—
ancient sites from Central Asia to the Middle East, Africa, and beyond.
On digs that have taken her from the depths of the Black Sea to
underwater medieval cities in Kyrgyzstan, she’s helped tell the stories
of some of history’s most fascinating civilizations. We asked her what
travelers might expect to experience; here’s what she had to say.
Q: What do you hope travelers will take away from
A: This expedition will lay bare how empires grow, why they conquer,
and how they fall. Understanding how today’s civilizations are
shaped by the empires of the past gives us a unique perspective
on the future of our world.
Q: The itinerary goes off the beaten path to places like Iran,
Turkmenistan, and Bosnia and Herzegovina. What awaits
us in these destinations?
A: Iran is replete with ancient Persian architecture and art—unique
works that are stunning in their geometry and intricacy. In
Turkmenistan, we’ll visit the shimmering oasis of Ashgabat,
remarkable for its large population of nomads that have settled
in a very modern city. Bosnia and Herzegovina gives us a
wonderful opportunity to better understand the Ottoman Empire
and its influence on the multiculturalism of today’s Sarajevo.
Q: Will travelers encounter remnants of more modern empires?
A: The Belarusian city of Minsk holds the last great remains of
the Soviet empire, with Stalinist architecture and Khrushchev-era
city planning that give a strong sense of a bygone time. We’ll have
the opportunity to compare this timeworn city with Belgrade,
a former Soviet satellite that is racing into the future.
Q: The trip includes a stop on the Mediterranean isle of
Corsica. What imperial influences can travelers find here?
A: Corsica has been at the center of European maritime history
since the Bronze Age. It’s the perfect place to get a perspective
on how the Mediterranean shaped history—not only of the
nations that surround it, but of the islands within it.