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About Bruce

“Bruce Northam is what you might call well-traveled.” —CNBC

“Bruce Northam’s Undiscovered Lower East Side NYC walking tour will not be undertold.” —Thrillist

Bruce Northam is a veteran travel writer (recent stories), five-time author, and NYC walking tour guide. He is the author of THE DIRECTIONS TO HAPPINESS: A 135-Country Quest for Life Lessons. Bruce’s show, American Detour, bares the travel writer’s journey. His talk, Directions to Your Destination, reveals the many shades of the travel industry and how to entice various travel markets. His other talk, Street Anthropology, is an ode to freestyle wandering. Visit

Bruce contributes to Thrillist, Long Island Pulse, JohnnyJet, TimeOut New York, Perceptive Travel, MPI’s Plan Your Meeting and GoNomad. He’s also appeared in Afar, Outside, Yahoo Travel, Atlas Obscura, American Express’s Inspirato, Travelgirl, TravelPulse, The Washington Times, Islands, CAAC (Air China’s in-flight magazine), USA Today, High Times, The Improper, Newsday, National Geographic Traveler, the New York Times, New York Post, Details, Natural Traveler, ALO, Forbes Traveler, National Public Radio,, The Huffington Post, Blue (USA version, former writer-at-large), Utne Reader,, and Programming (NACA).

“Think of it as a Chicken Soup for the traveler — with balls.” —Thrillist

Bruce also has some pull on Facebook via Bruce Northam and American Detour.

Literary recognition includes Lowell Thomas awards, Visit Britain’s Grand Prize, and top honors from the Press Club of Long Island. In addition to authoring NYC 7, Globetrotter Dogma, In Search of Adventure, and The Frugal Globetrotter, Bruce is frequently anthologized.

*This one-minute audition introduces Bruce’s travel mission. Preview thirty short episodes of American Detour.

Bruce’s fifth book, NYC 7, is a National Geographic title about New York’s ‘International Express’—the 7 train’s 22-stop ride, which doubles as a trip around the world, touching people from dozens of nationalities and showcasing even more lifestyles. Globetrotter Dogma: 100 Canons for Escaping the Rat Race & Exploring the World, was cited by National Geographic as one of “Ten better choices: insightful travelogues that will inspire rather than dictate.” (Geographic’s list included The Travels of Marco Polo, by Marco Polo.)

Travel+Leisure describes The Directions to Happiness as “a fun ride.”

“Adventure rock ‘n’ roll.” —Condé Nast

“By the end of the book, you like the author, you believe him, and you’ve had a fun ride–because this is no namby-pamby travelogue.” —Travel+Leisure

“Write This Way.” —Huffington Post

“A Literary Compass: 135 Countries, Infinite Lessons, One Book.” —Travelgirl Magazine

A JOURNEY THROUGH 135 COUNTRIES REVEALS WISDOM FROM UNLIKELY SAGES — In THE DIRECTIONS TO HAPPINESS, Bruce Thoreau Northam shares the infinite goodwill of strangers through engaging tales from his travels to 135 countries. He has spent decades navigating the globe in a continuing search for words to live by—and live for—in his quest for enlightenment.