About Beth Reiber

Victoria Peak

Beth Reiber’s career as a freelance travel writer has spanned more than three decades and includes many years living in both Germany and Japan. She first wrote Frommer’s guides to Japan, Tokyo and Hong Kong more than 25 years ago and has updated all subsequent editions. Her latest book is Frommer’s EasyGuide to Tokyo, Kyoto and Western Honshu, published in 2015. Over the years she also wrote Frommer’s Berlin, Frommer’s Walking Tours Berlin, Frommer’s Walking Tours Tokyo, Frommer’s St. Louis/Kansas City, and A Serious Shopper’s Guide to London and contributed to the Frommer’s Europe from $$ a Day series, Frommer’s Europe by Rail, Frommer’s Southeast Asia, Frommer’s China, Frommer’s USA, and America on Wheels—South Central States & Texas. There may be more, but at this point she can’t recall what they might be.

My sons and I spent a month in Peru in 2008

She’s never counted all the countries she’s been to but reckons there must be close to 45. Prior to focusing on guide books, she hitchhiked through Europe, drove her beat-up Datsun as far as it could take her between Canada and the Yucatan, and bummed around Asia for travel articles that appeared in newspapers across the country, including the Washington Post, Los Angeles Times, Boston Globe, Philadelphia Inquirer, Atlanta Constitution, Miami Herald, Chicago Tribune, Detroit News, Minneapolis Tribune, Denver Post, Houston Chronicle, San Diego Union, San Francisco Examiner and many other newspapers that never paid very well. She has been a member of the Society of American Travel Writers since 1988.

Some of her recent articles include A Pure Land Inspired by Treachery, about Hiraizumi in Japan and appearing on BBC.com, as well as Stanley, Hong Kong; Discover the Hip Business Ambience of Modern OsakaTokyo Focuses On A Successful Future; Macau Rocks From Dusk ‘Til Dawn; Omotesando, TokyoExperience Macau’s Dual Heritage; and Hong Kong Makes Doing Business a Pleasure, all for Global Traveler.  For IndependentTraveler.com she wrote about Austria in Getting Around Austria and Austria Lodging: Castles, Mountain Huts, Spa Hotels and More and a trio of articles about Japan in The Best 12 Japan ExperiencesJapan Lodging: Inns, Temples, Luxury Hotels and More; and Getting Around Japan.

Other articles include Karuizawa, Japan: In the Footsteps of John and Yoko, The Oil Legacy: Oklahoma’s Oil History and Wealth, A Detour to the Jaw-Dropping Iguazu Falls in Argentina, and Preserving the City’s Past in Colonia del Sacramento, Uruguay, all for the Go Nomad website; a series of walking tours in Macau on Penha Peninsula and around the ruins of St. Paul, as well as as Coloane Macau–Old-World Charm, for travel2next.com; Tokyo Story and Kobe’s Slice of China for Skyward (Japan Airlines’ domestic magazine); Queer Tokyo, Lost in Translation, about the Ni-Chome gay district for Element magazine, published in Singapore; Hong Kong Food & Drink Tours published in USA TodayWhy I’ll be Studying Spanish Forever and How Travel Taught me to Live More Fully and Simply for nextavenue.org, and an article called Hakone–A Soothing and Stunning Getaway for the 2013 edition of Destination Hyatt that was placed in Hyatt international hotels throughout the year. Over the years her work has also appeared in print and online in Forbes Travel Guide, National Geographic Traveler, Orbitz, Discovery (Cathay Pacific’s in-flight magazine), Hilton Resorts, Kaleidoscope, ACCJ Journal (American Chamber of Commerce in Japan) and publications for Rotary International, among others.

In front of Itsukushima, Miyajima

In front of Itsukushima, Miyajima

In addition to writing articles and guide books, she has also reviewed hotels in Japan, Hong Kong and Missouri for Star Service and updated destination reports on Tokyo, Osaka, Branson, Kansas City and Kansas for Weissmann Reports (both now branded under Northstar Travel Media’s travel42). She has also written advertorials about travel in Japan, including those that have appeared in National Geographic Traveler, Los Angeles Times, Conde Nast Traveler and The New Yorker.

As a travel expert on Japan, she has been interviewed on radio and CNN and by the Japan National Tourism Organization; has been a guest speaker at various events (including a media event about Kyushu held Nov 14, 2013, in NYC), has written blogs and articles for the Japan National Tourism Organization’s website at www.japantravelinfo.com; and since 2009 has been a VISIT JAPAN Ambassador, an honorary title awarded by the Japanese government for her contributions in drawing foreign visitors to Japan (the only US resident awarded the title). To her chagrin, she is also the longest-reigning author of a guide book to Japan.

In 2011 she received the Langston Hughes Creative Writing Award for fiction; her submission for the contest was the first chapter of a novel she hopes to someday complete, set in 1980s Tokyo and called Rife with the Tokyo Brews. In 2015 she received an honorable mention for a short story submitted to the Kansas Voices writing competition. In 2013, her app Hong Kong Explorations received second place in the Best Travel App category from the Central Chapter of the Society of American Travel Writers.

When not on the road she enjoys reading, writing fiction, cooking, hanging out with friends and family, getting her hands dirty in her garden and keeping peace between her dog and chickens. Everyone always asks what’s the favorite place she’s been to, to which she always replies, “The place I haven’t been to yet.”

9 Responses to About Beth Reiber

  1. shannon walker says:

    I too am an empty nester ……………..I’ll be in Canada until November but then back to Asia . Best to come in the summer or fall. The fall is actually the best time to come as the bugs are gone and the foliage is fab . I would love to see you I have lot’s of room for you and whom ever comes in tow . Please try I mean it’s been what 20+ years . …………………Miss you ………………Shannon

  2. Rick Valliere says:

    Recently returned from 10 days in Tokyo after spending 10 days in Osaka/Kyoto in 2010. Your guidebooks were the best, indispensable (along with Tuttle’s Getting Around Tokyo).

    • Beth Reiber says:

      Thank you so much for your kind words! I rarely hear from readers any more, so I really appreciate it. I don’t know if you’ve been following the saga with Frommer’s, but it was sold to Google last August and was recently reacquired by Arthur Frommer. No one knows yet whether guide books will continue to be published or whether they’ll appear as ebooks or only online. I’d hate to see actual books go….Anyway, thanks again, and glad my books helped.

  3. AnnA says:

    BETH! I finally managed to find how to contact you! This is marvellous! Remember me? Your old friend from years gone by, in Tokyo? I am now living in Yokohama and have been for the last 14 years. You still look the same! When are you here in Japan again? We have so much catching up to do! Drop me a line, pleaaaaaaaaaase! Haven’t stopped thinking about you all these years, hoping to perhaps bump into you in the streets of Tokyo!

  4. Carol Holstead says:

    Beth, I’m happy I found this. I hope the world does, too. You are a great storyteller.

  5. Great description of all you are and do, and wonderful pictures! This is a lively and beautiful website, and it’s great to see your good and vivid words here.

  6. Marx Wilgus says:

    I don’t even know how I ended up here, but I thought this post was good. I don’t know who you are but definitely you are going to a famous blogger if you are not already 😉 Cheers!

  7. Beth Reiber says:

    Hi Oda-san! No, I am not in Japan, but I am hoping to go to Tokyo toward the end of May. Because I need to work long hours to get all my fact-checking done, I’m hoping most businesses, museums, restaurants, etc., will be open somewhat normal hours, though self-imposed energy conservation efforts may curtail open hours. Hope you and your family are well! Beth

  8. jun oda says:

    I hope you are well.
    I’m happy I found your HP.
    Are you in Japan?

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