Rick Steves (born May 10, 1955) is an American travel writer, author, activist, and television personality. His travel philosophy encourages people to explore less-touristed areas of destinations and to become immersed in the local people’s way of life. Since 2000, he has hosted Rick Steves’ Europe, a travel series on public television. Steves also has a public radio travel show called Travel with Rick Steves (2005−present) and has authored numerous travel guides, the first of which was popular Europe Through the Back Door. In 2006, he became a syndicated newspaper columnist, and in 2010, his company released a mobile phone application called “Rick Steves’ Audio Europe” containing self-guided walking tours and geographical information.