As even a new player, you can start to explore Illyria, the world of Illyriad, sending out diplomats to see what you might discover scattered across the map.
Some of the areas worth exploring have been flagged in the Herald. So, as I type the second main article down on the Herald explains that the Order of Allembine (a non-player Faction) would like people to search out statues scattered around the map. (Finding all 20 will doubtless require you to swap information with other players, but you may find a few just by looking around the map. The most centrally located of these, as a starting point, is here.)
All you need in order to start investigating these is a Consulate, and then a few of whatever diplomats you think would be worth sending out to investigate these.