Rudy Maxa's World
Building on his past seasons of travel shows featuring Europe and the Pacific Rim, award-winning travel journalist Rudy Maxa broadens his horizons, and those of his audience. In this series, Rudy offers his sophisticated take on a destination's history, culture, architecture, politics and cuisine, while also turning a journalistic eye to the people and lifestyles of Russia, Estonia, Turkey, India, Argentina, Japan and Thailand.
Rudy Maxa's World Previous Broadcasts
Buenos Aires, Argentina (Episode #110)
KQED Life: Wed, Aug 27, 2014 -- 11:30 PM
The style and verve of one of South America's most beautiful capitals is the focus of this episode that highlights Argentina's national dance, the tango, as well as the energy that its diverse population brings to the urban landscape. The HD lens brings to the fore the graceful and classic architecture of Buenos Aires, exemplified by the San Telmo neighborhood whose Sunday market is traditionally closed at sunset by an impromptu street band that marches through the streets, collecting dancers and revelers with its insistent drumbeats. At local tango parlors called milongas, Buenos Aires residents, known as portenos, lend an air of authenticity to the dance that grew up in the working class neighborhoods of the city. We wander the famous Recoleta cemetery in downtown Buenos Aires, where incredible monuments to the departed, including Eva Peron, feature winged angels and other fantastically decorated crypts. Meet a 70-year-old ice cream maker from Sicily who never misses a day's work. And explore the underground art scene that's finding a home in Buenos Aires.
- KQED Life: Thu, Aug 28, 2014 -- 5:30 AM
St. Petersburg, Russia (Episode #109)
KQED Life: Tue, Aug 26, 2014 -- 11:30 PM
The treasures of the Hermitage are revealed in High Definition for perhaps the first time for American television viewers. St. Petersburg--enjoying a renaissance since its favorite son, Vladimir Putin, ascended to office - is no longer the gloomy city it once was as billions of rubles pour in to restore the place to its former glory. From the splendors of Peterhof to the quiet grace of the city's many canals, this former capital built by a czar has reclaimed its position as one of the world's great destinations.
- KQED Life: Wed, Aug 27, 2014 -- 5:30 AM
Estonia (Episode #108)
KQED Life: Wed, Aug 20, 2014 -- 11:30 PM
The old town in the capital city of Talinn is Europe's best-restored medieval town with streets and buildings that recall the days of the Hanseatic League but whose cafes, art galleries, hotels, and restaurants today appeal to both sophisticated as well as first-time travelers. Venture into the countryside of Estonia, to the large island of Saaremaa and the much smaller island of Muhu, where you'll find windmills, thatch-roofed farmhouses and quiet waters. Of special interest is a candid interview with Mart Laar, the prime minister who took over a country that was an economic and psychological basket case following the withdrawal of Soviet troops and-with the help of a flat tax-turned Estonia into one of Europe's most dynamic and forward-thinking little countries.
- KQED Life: Thu, Aug 21, 2014 -- 5:30 AM
Thailand, Andaman Islands (Episode #107)
KQED Life: Tue, Aug 19, 2014 -- 11:30 PM
Some of the world's most beautiful waters and beaches await visitors to southern Thailand, where the names of Andaman Coast towns such as Phuket are well known to backpackers and sun seekers. But there's more to this 16-million-year-old ecosystem than just golf and sunbathing. Dramatic limestone cliffs and rock formations jut from translucent waters of Phang-nga Bay; join Rudy as he paddles through hidden entrances of small islands to find mangroves few people ever see. Meet locals in a seaside village devastated by the recent tsunami as they struggle to rebuild by offering sustainable tourism and home stays to visitors.
- KQED Life: Wed, Aug 20, 2014 -- 5:30 AM
Thailand, Golden Triangle (Episode #106)
KQED Life: Wed, Aug 6, 2014 -- 11:30 PM
Tea plantations have replaced the opium fields in northern Thailand, but dense jungle still covers much of the area where Thailand borders Burma and Laos. Visit an Akha hill tribe village trying to maintain its traditions in the face of tourism. Meet elephants rescued from life in Bangkok at an elephant orphanage. Join Rudy as he takes mahout lessons and gets soaked steering his elephant into the river that separates Thailand from Burma. Explore the small villages that mark this part of the country and meet a Buddhist monk who uses horses, martial arts, and religion to steer young men away from the temptations of drugs being produced across the border in Burma. The saffron robes of Buddhist monks, the vivid colors of local blossoms, and the brilliant emerald of rice fields make the Golden Triangle a magical corner of the world.
- KQED Life: Thu, Aug 7, 2014 -- 5:30 AM
Bangkok, Thailand (Episode #105)
KQED Life: Tue, Aug 5, 2014 -- 11:30 PM
The capital of Thailand appears the capital of pandemonium, its streets filled with tuk-tuks, motorcycle taxis, cars and 12 million people. But the Thais have mastered the art of creating tranquility behind closed doors, whether in homes, hotels or temples. Rudy takes you to back streets and the quiet, residential klongs, or canals, of Bangkok. Visits to Bangkok's legendary food carts and markets reveal the real city that captures the affection of visitors who take the time to seek out what makes Bangkok special. Marvel at the Emerald Buddha (made no less spectacular by the fact it's really jade), visit the city's flower and fish markets, join locals offering incense and flowers at colorful outdoor shrines, celebrate the king's 80th birthday with an all-day and all-night party, and take a wooden boat along the city's main artery, the wide Chao Phraya river. A side trip takes viewers to the world's only outdoor market whose vendors must fold back their displays 16 times a day as a train passes through the heart of commerce, missing vegetables, meats, and fish by inches.
- KQED Life: Wed, Aug 6, 2014 -- 5:30 AM