Here is, basically, the impetus for writing The Art of Travel:
“If our lives are dominated by a search for happiness, then perhaps few activities reveal as much about the dynamics of this quest — in all its ardour and paradoxes — than [sic.] our travels. They express, however inarticulately, an understanding of what life might be about, outside of the constraints of work and of the struggle for survival. Yet rarely are they considered to present philosophical problems — that is, issues requiring thought beyond the practical. We are inundated with advice on where to travel to, but we hear little of why and how we should go, even though the art of travel seems naturally to sustain a number of questions neither so simple nor so trivial, and whose study might in modest ways contribute to an understanding of what the Greek philosophers beautifully termed eudaimonia, or ‘human flourishing.'”
I read it while I was here:
It was perfect. You don’t have to go to Florence to read this book. Just read it when you travel somewhere. In fact, one of the chapters is about a journey around the author’s bedroom. Travel doesn’t get more budget than that.