Gloomy Weather Doesn't Stand a Chance Against This Special Light Therapy Umbrella

Travel and Leisure - Wed, 06/13/2018 - 08:25
<p>The end of June marks the beginning of summer, but that doesn’t mean everyone's all sunshine and smiles. In fact, for many parts of the U.S., June is one of the <a href="" target="_blank">rainiest</a> and cloudiest months of the year. This "<a href="" target="_blank">June Gloom</a>" can lead to people feeling some detrimental emotional and physical effects. </p><p>But Days Inn by Wyndham has a unique solution for people who are feeling down in the dumps. The affordable hotel chain is now offering a “Days Innbrella” to help travelers combat gloomy weather by not only keeping them dry, but also giving them a spot of light therapy.</p><p><strong>Related: </strong><a href="" target="_blank">How to Make Your Hotel Room Healthier</a></p><p>The Days Innbrella is much like your typical umbrella. It’s large and blocks out the rain so you can go about your day without getting soaked. But it’s also outfitted with therapy-like LED lights that generate more than 4,000 LUX each, giving you a boost of energy.</p><p><strong>Related: </strong><a href="" target="_blank">There's a Secret Message Hiding in Your Cocktail Umbrella</a></p><p>The Days Innbrella will be made available at specific Days Inn locations including Seattle, Portland, Oregon, <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank">New York City</a>, Houston, New Orleans, and Miami.</p><p>The brand is also giving away a limited number to travelers on its Twitter handle (@DaysInn) now through June 26. To enter, Twitter users have to publicly retweet the below tweet from Days Inn.</p><p>For more information about the Days Innbrella and where to find one at a Days Inn, visit the <a href="" target="_blank">Days Inn website</a>. More information on the sweepstakes can be <a href="" target="_blank">found here</a>.</p>
Categories: Travel

This Passenger's Video of a Filthy Airplane Bathroom Will Give You Nightmares

Travel and Leisure - Wed, 06/13/2018 - 08:03
<p>It’s an unspoken rule of thumb that <a href="" target="_blank">airplane bathrooms</a> are the most unpleasant place to be on your flight.</p><p>But at the very least we expect our lavatories to be clean and sanitary.</p><p>Passenger Ben Perry wasn't so lucky on a Ryanair flight from Comiso Airport in Sicily to London Stansted: According to a video, when he visited his plane bathroom he found grime all over the sink, mirror, and walls.</p><p><strong>Related: </strong><a href="" target="_blank">This Is What Happens When You Flush the Airplane Toilet</a></p><p>The toilet itself looked positively unusable.</p><p>Perry posted a video of what he saw on Twitter, but don’t look unless you have a strong stomach.</p><p>“After a 4 hour delay I get on board to then find your toilets/baby changing facilities like this its absolutely disgusting! I mentioned this to a staff [member] after I come out of there and his reply was not our problem!! I see there customer care is not very important!!” Perry wrote on Twitter.</p><p>A <a href="" target="_blank">Ryanair</a> spokesperson told <em><a href="" target="_blank">The Sun</a>: </em>“All Ryanair aircraft are thoroughly cleaned by professionals at the end of each day, in line with industry standards, and cabin crew carry out a cabin tidy and toilet check at the end of every flight.”</p><p>It’s unclear why this bathroom seems to have missed its cleanliness check.</p><p>The spokesperson also corrected Perry’s post, saying that the flight was only delayed by two hours, not four as Perry claimed on Twitter.</p><p>At the very least, this is your casual reminder to always wear shoes, and wash your hands, on flights.</p>
Categories: Travel

Why Did the Alligator Cross the Runway? To Delay the Spirit Airlines Flight

Travel and Leisure - Wed, 06/13/2018 - 07:50
<p>There are a lot of reasons why a <a href="" target="_blank">plane can get delayed</a>. Between bad weather, runway traffic jams, and <a href="" target="_blank">unruly passengers</a>, lots of flights can have trouble keeping schedule.</p><p>Occasionally, even the animal kingdom can interfere with your takeoff or landing. And depending on where you are, this can mean encountering some unusual critters.</p><p>At Orlando International Airport on Monday, a <a href="" target="_blank">Spirit Airlines flight</a> had a near run-in with an alligator who was sauntering its way across the runway toward a pond.</p><p>Passenger Anthony Velardi, who posted a video of the reptile on <a href="" target="_blank">Facebook</a>, put it perfectly: “Only in Florida.”</p><p>The plane had just landed at MCO from Washington, D.C., according to Velardi. The flight had to wait about five minutes for the alligator to finish its casual stroll before it could continue to the gate, <a href="" target="_blank">WPTV</a> reported.</p><p>One passenger told <a href="" target="_blank">NPR </a> the pilot came on the overhead speaker, announcing, "Believe it or not there is a gator on the runway and we are waiting for it to cross."</p><p>Airport trucks made sure the gator stayed put, but it was clear the creature was unbothered by the giant machines around it.</p><p>Airport spokeswoman Carolyn Fennell told the Associated Press that sightings of alligators are quite common around the airport.</p>
Categories: Travel

Flooding in France Is Causing Major Destruction and Deaths (Video)

Travel and Leisure - Wed, 06/13/2018 - 07:40
<p>Severe weather caused the deaths of at least four people in France over the last two weeks, according to <em>The Local</em>, with more rain expected to come.</p><p>As <em><a href=";utm_medium=twitter" target="_blank">The Local</a></em> reported, the body of a 37-year-old man was found in his car in northern France in early June. He is believed to have drowned when his car became encased in <a href="" target="_blank">flood water</a>.</p><p>Earlier this month a woman in her 90s also died in the town of Montmorillon when her home flooded. During that same timeframe, the body of another elderly woman was found in a river in the Lot-et-Garonne region of southern France.</p><p><strong>Related: </strong><a href="" target="_blank">Paris Is Flooding and the Pictures Are Intense (Video)</a></p><p>The rains are expected to last through Wednesday at 6 a.m. local time.</p><p>Beyond claiming several lives, the storms are also causing severe destruction to the area. On Tuesday, flooding caused a Paris commuter train to partially overturn, injuring seven people on board.</p><p>The weather may also affect the wine industry in France for months to come. Already, the <a href="" target="_blank">Weather Channel</a> reported, these severe storms have destroyed 8 million bottles worth of grapes that would have been made into champagne. The Weather Channel added that 17,544 acres of vines were impacted in the Bordeaux region while 4,500 acres were affected in Champagne.</p><img alt="June 12, 2018 in Saint-Remy-les-Chevreuse shows a flooded street following heavy rains. "src=""><p>The flooding has become so intense that<em> </em>the town of Morlaix, located in northwestern Brittany, is still digging its way out after it was hit with an estimated month’s worth of rain in just 30 minutes last week, <em><a href=";utm_medium=twitter" target="_blank">The Local</a> </em>reported.</p><p>According to <em><a href="" target="_blank">The Connexion</a></em>, most communities in northern France are still under threat including Ardennes, Aube, Marne, Haute-Marne, Meurthe-et-Moselle, Meuse, Moselle, Bas-Rhin, Haut-Rhin, and Vosges.</p><img alt="A man walks in a flooded road in Saint-Remy-les-Chevreuse on June 12, 2018 following heavy rains. "src=""><p>Beyond the concerning amounts of rain, forecasters are also warning citizens of strong lightening storms and potential hail to come.</p>
Categories: Travel

This Family Will Plan Your Dream Trip to Italy — Just Like They Did for Obama

Travel and Leisure - Wed, 06/13/2018 - 06:57
<p>Upon meeting Angelo Amorico, it’s immediately obvious why he’s so beloved by the likes of <a href="" target="_blank">Oprah and the Obamas</a>.</p><p>In the 20 years since he launched <a href="" target="_blank">Access Italy</a>, a full-service tour company that arranges everything for travelers from takeoff to landing, Angelo has learned a thing or two about how to be an extremely charming host. His first embrace with visitors — a kiss on each cheek — comes with a pat on the head that feels so familiar you have to stop for a moment and remember you’re not actually related.</p><p>Born in Foggia and raised in Rome, 65-year-old Angelo seems to have met every insider in Italy, and he is using those contacts to bring travelers the most exclusive vacation experience possible. </p><p>Take Angelo's good-natured disposition and penchant for kindness and add an unparalleled knowledge of Italy's hidden gems and the help of his two sons, Simone and Marco, and it's clear how this family became the unofficial tour guides of the rich and famous in Italy. That's not an exaggeration: Oprah named him <a href="" target="_blank">her personal favorite tour guide</a> and the Obamas asked him to <a href="" target="_blank">personalize their 2017 Italian vacation</a>.</p><p><strong>Related:</strong> <a href="" target="_blank">The Ultimate Guide to the Best World Heritage Sites in Italy</a></p><p>But even if you aren’t a daytime TV star or a member of the political elite, the Amoricos are more than happy to host you. </p><p>On a recent journey through Italy, I got to experience the country like never before in the trusty hands of these local experts. Here’s what you’ll get if you decide to travel to the most romantic and pasta-filled nation in the world with Access Italy too.</p><h2>The Itinerary They Provide:</h2><img alt="Access Italy "src=""><p>For our trip, Access Italy pieced together an itinerary based on our personal travel desires. This meant stopping in at several expected landmarks around <a href="" target="_blank">Rome</a> that we pre-selected — with a few special surprises thrown in for good measure. And because we were interested in seeing more of what Italy had to offer, Angelo added several other destinations for us to visit beyond the capital city, including <a href="" target="_blank">Lake Como</a> and Milan.</p><p>And we had plenty of places to choose from since Angelo, Simone, and Marco work with more than 50 local guides throughout the country.</p><p>“We understand what luxury means, which we send our clients,” Simone said while sipping an espresso as the sun went down in Lake Como. “We make sure they see the behind-the-scenes of the Vatican, or something special that only we can do. But at the same time, in today's luxury market, clients still want to experience authenticity. So with us, I feel that we have a bit of combination. You can see the Sistine Chapel when it's closed, you can see the behind the scenes, but at the same time we take you to our home, have a meal with us, see how the Romans live."</p><p>The process starts off with the potential guest listing off the things they’re interested in, Simone explained — cooking classes, sightseeing in Milan, truffle hunting up north, lounging on the beach on the Amalfi Coast, eating pizza in Florence — along with the things they’d rather skip. From there, they will go back and forth to hone in on a minute-by-minute itinerary that will make every day the client's idea of perfection be it a solo journey, a romantic getaway, or the family vacation of a lifetime.</p><h2>The Hotels You’ll Stay in:</h2><img alt="Access Italy "src=""><p>While in Rome, Access Italy set up our stay at <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank">Hotel Eden</a>, a <a href="" target="_blank">recently revamped</a> five-star hotel that screams Italian glamour. The hotel, which originally opened in 1889, went through a massive renovation in 2017 and now exquisitely marries old-world Italian charm with new-world amenities like a Michelin-starred rooftop restaurant providing some of the best views (and bites) in the city, a fully stocked spa, and gold- and marble-covered floors, walls, and even ceilings. During the renovation, the hotel also decided to pare down its room selections from 121 to 98 to allow for more suites and in turn bring more attention to each and every guest. Its location, just a few blocks from the Spanish Steps and overlooking the Villa Borghese gardens, doesn’t hurt either.</p><p>Access Italy also booked us rooms in <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank">Villa d'Este</a> in Lake Como, where we were able to enjoy yet another classic Italian spot that sits directly along the gorgeous shoreline. Each room of this hotel, which first opened its doors in 1873, is more spectacular than the last. Guests feel as though they are stepping back into a more magical time when it was expected you dress up for dinner, wear a top hat to tea, and carry a parasol on your wooden boat ride across the lake.</p><p>Finally, we topped off our Italian tour at the <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank">Four Seasons in Milan</a>. The hotel, which is situated right in the heart of the city, gives visitors everything they’d expect from a Four Seasons property. From the attentive staff and beautiful gardens to the attention to detail paid at their breakfasts, there may be no better home base for exploring Milan.</p><p>And though this was the ultimate hotel itinerary for us, Access Italy works with each guest to put them in the best accommodations that fit within the budget restrictions provided.</p><h2>The Excursions You'll Take:</h2><img alt="Access Italy "src=""><p>Beyond booking your stays, Access Italy will take you to every sight you want to check out. While in Rome we wanted to take a walking tour of the city to soak in as many spectacular places as possible. They took us to all the major stops, such as the Colosseum, but also made sure to take us down small alleyways ideal for snapping a few photos and showed us the best pizza shops for snacks along the way.</p><p>If you’re interested, Simone or Angelo will even take you on a guided tour of the Vatican themselves. There, they will point out hidden secrets in the paintings, tell you more about how the Vatican affects the Italian way of life, and take you inside the holy monument after hours so you can have the place all to yourself.</p><p>They’ll also take you through the back to visit the Vatican’s mosaic shop, where you can watch artists create masterpieces for the Pope. These very pieces have been gifted to dignitaries, world leaders, and friends of the church for years. Who knows, they may even let you take a tiny piece of glass or two with you as you go.</p><p>If you're looking to shop, hit some local favorites on the outskirts of the city (hint: ask about fine leather goods), or set up some personalized shopping time at Fendi’s flagship location.</p><p>There are even a few excursions we aren’t allowed to share with you here because we were sworn to secrecy about the people involved and the places we went. But let’s just say it’s crucial you ask Access Italy about all the special things they can do for you.</p><h2>The Food You'll Eat:</h2><img alt="Access Italy "src=""><p>Come on, it’s Italy, you didn’t think a tour company with A-list clients would let you down here, did you?</p><p>Throughout our journey, Simone took us to some of the finest restaurants around, but the most memorable meal of all happened at the Amoricos' own dining room table.</p><p>Just as the sun went down in Rome, we stepped into Angelo’s home to dine alongside his wife, Eva, and chef, Mamma Eva. </p><p>Mamma Eva walked us through the process of creating mouth-watering fettuccine. From the flour and eggs to the rolling, cutting, and boiling, we cooked right beside her, learning exactly how to do it all in our own home too. She’ll even hand write the recipe. </p><p>Next, we sat right in the Amoricos' living room, said grace, and dug in alongside our new friends.</p><h2>The Memories You'll Keep:</h2><p>This trip, to put it simply, isn’t average. In fact, I'd say it was hands down the best trip I've had to Italy, and I'll venture a guess it was the best one Oprah, Ben Stiller, Owen Wilson, Aaron Paul, and Barack Obama have had too.</p><p>There’s something magical about seeing the Vatican all by yourself, stepping into a side street pizza parlor in Rome and being the only English-speaking person there, boarding a wooden boat for a day while sipping champagne as you pass by George Clooney’s Como villa, and drinking a coffee out on your balcony in Milan as the sun comes up. And none of it would have been found without Access Italy’s help. That’s the beauty of traveling with your new Italian <em>famiglia</em> — they’ll take care of everything. All you need to do is show up.</p>
Categories: Travel

A Drunk Man and His Blow-up Doll Force Flight to Make an Emergency Landing

Travel and Leisure - Tue, 06/12/2018 - 16:49
<p>There is a short list of things you can do that will get you kicked off your flight. Bringing on your own alcohol is one thing. Getting belligerent and drunk is another. But one man took his bad plane behavior to a new high.</p><p>A Jet2 flight from Belfast, Ireland, to Ibiza, Spain, had to make an emergency landing in France after a disruptive passenger exhibited “aggressive” behavior towards flight crew and fellow passengers, <a href="" target="_blank"><em>The Sun</em> reported</a>.</p><p>The man was apparently traveling with a blow-up doll, according to some other passengers. Yes, that kind of blow-up doll.</p><p>A person who was apparently also on the flight posted on Twitter, “Nice one guys! Together with a blow up doll at 7am in front of my kids and long queues! Way to go!”</p><p>The man was reportedly part of a bachelor party, which had become “rowdy,” <a href="" target="_blank">according to BBC Northern Ireland</a>.</p><p>Another passenger said the diversion doubled the flight time from three hours to six.</p><p>A spokesperson from Jet2 told <em>The Sun</em>, “The customer, Mr. McDowell, travelling with a group was aggressive to both crew and fellow customers on board, something which will not be tolerated.” They added that his behavior was “particularly unnecessary” toward a member of the crew and that he was “aggressive and unruly” around other passengers with small children.</p><p>“It's very clear that consuming alcohol illicitly contributed to this behaviour and as part of our ‘OnBoard Together’ approach we will continue to call for action to better control the sale and consumption of tax free goods purchased at airports,” the spokesperson said. “We will not under any circumstances tolerate this type of disgraceful behaviour onboard our aircraft.”</p>
Categories: Travel

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle Announce Their First Official Trip

Travel and Leisure - Tue, 06/12/2018 - 16:13
<p>Now that their wedding is over, Prince Harry and Meghan Markle, the Duchess of Sussex, are moving on to better things. And those things include traveling to some pretty incredible places around the globe.</p><p>This fall, the royals will pay a visit to <a href="//" target="_blank">Australia</a>, <a href="" target="_blank">New Zealand</a>, <a href="" target="_blank">Fiji</a> and the <a href="" target="_blank">Kingdom of Tonga</a> at at the request of the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, according to Kensington Palace.</p><p>The couple’s trip will coincide with the Invictus Games, which will be held in Australia this <a href="" target="_blank">October</a>.</p><p><a href="" target="_blank">According to the <em>Evening Standard</em></a>, Harry and Meghan will be mirroring Harry’s parents, Prince Charles and Princess Diana, whose first first royal tour was also to Australia and New Zealand. At the time, Prince Charles and Diana spent 41 days overseas.</p><p>This trip will also clearly be meaningful to Harry, who created the Invictus Games as a way to celebrate and inspire wounded soldiers in their recovery. <a href="" target="_blank">According to <em>ABC News</em></a>, an estimated 550 competitors from 17 countries competed in 12 sports during last year's event, which was held in Canada.</p><p>“As the founder of the Invictus Games, The Duke of Sussex has become a champion for war veterans around the world, including in Australia,” Australia’s Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull <a href="" target="_blank">said in a statement</a>. “His attendance, alongside The Duchess of Sussex, will be a wonderful highlight for the more than 500 competitors and thousands of spectators.”</p><p>Beyond celebrating the deserving soldiers who take part in the games, the event also holds a special place in Harry and Meghan’s hearts, as the 2017 games in Canada were the first time the duo stepped out <a href="" target="_blank">together as an official couple</a>. Just a few short weeks later they announced their engagement and the rest is royal history.</p>
Categories: Travel

San Antonio Is the Food Destination You Didn’t Know You Needed to Visit

Travel and Leisure - Tue, 06/12/2018 - 16:01
<p>There’s a lot more to San Antonio than the Alamo and Riverwalk, and there’s a lot more to San Antonio’s food scene than Tex-Mex and barbecue.</p><p>Last year, San Antonio became the second American city to be designated a <a href="" target="_blank">Creative City of Gastronomy by UNESCO</a>, the branch of the United Nations that designates World Heritage Sites. Just in time to celebrate its <a href="" target="_blank">tricentennial</a>, San Antonio has become a go-to place to sample chicken fried oysters, chorizo burgers, and tacos of all styles from hundreds of unique restaurants.</p><p>San Antonio’s transformation into a foodie destination began more than a decade ago, kickstarted by an urban revitalization project that transformed an old brewery into a culinary paradise anchored by a <a href="" target="_blank">Culinary Institute of America campus</a>. The Pearl Brewery operated for more than 100 years before closing in 2001. <a href="" target="_blank">It’s since been redeveloped</a> and now houses San Antonio’s first food hall, a restaurant by James Beard Award-nominated chef Andrew Weissman and a year-round farmers market.</p><p>“It’s become the cornerstone of the San Antonio food community,” said Delicia Herrera, a lifelong San Antonio resident who served on the local City Council for from 2005 through 2009.</p><p>The school, the city’s low cost of living, and a low cost of doing business have made it an easy place for chefs to set up shop.</p><p>“Once they arrive, they want to stay,” said Karen Wolfe Haram, a retired <a href="" target="_blank"><em>San Antonio Express-News</em></a> food and dining editor who has lived in San Antonio for more than 30 years.</p><p><a href="" target="_blank">TLC’s Cake Boss Buddy Valastro has two restaurants</a> in the city. Actor Armie Hammer and his wife Elizabeth Chambers own San Antonio’s <a href="" target="_blank">Bird Bakery</a>. <a href="" target="_blank">Chef Johnny Hernandez</a>, who helped bring Top Chef Texas to the Alamo City, now operates a dozen local restaurants.</p><p>“There are just a handful of cities that have a truly unique food identity,” Hernandez said. “San Antonio is one of them.”</p><p>The Pearl Brewery is likely to be the first of many culinary destinations within the city. Hernandez says he’s floated the idea of turning other historic spots like La Villita and Maverick Plaza into food villages aimed at showcasing the city’s unique cuisine.</p><p>“The Pearl set an example and created a model for us to follow in redeveloping these sites,” he said. “A lot of people are already coming here for the food and culture. San Antonio is the place for Mexican food, but there’s more.”</p><p>For Mexican food, La Gloria, Villa Rica, Rosario's, La Fogata, Aldaco's, and La Fonda on Main are staples. Beyond Mexican, there is Biga on the Banks, Bohanan's, The Granary, Supper, and Cured, which specializes in charcuterie and craft cocktails.</p><p>The Travel Channel’s Andrew Zimmern, who is known for eating bizarre foods as he travels, has been spotted in San Antonio at least three times in the past three years, Hernandez said.</p><p>“Ten years ago, he did one segment on Liberty Bar,” Hernandez said. “Three years ago it was a full episode on San Antonio. That’s how much is going on here now.”</p><p>Shows like Zimmern’s and local millennials, the generation everyone loves to hate, have helped to elevate the city’s food scene. “They see a place on a TV show and they just have to go there,” Herrera said.</p><p>Top Chef filmed a full season in Texas, shooting half of its episodes in San Antonio. Host Padma Lakshmi was even photographed outside of the Alamo.</p><p>Even with Hollywood’s attention, there’s little pretense to the San Antonio food scene.</p><p>San Antonio is America’s most affordable foodie hotspot, according to a <a href="" target="_blank">2017 report from WalletHub</a>. San Antonio was the country’s number 25 overall foodie city, according to the ranking, which judged 180 U.S. cities on measures including affordability, accessibility of high-quality restaurants and the presence of food festivals.</p><p>San Antonio is also a city that’s true to its culinary roots.</p><p>“You can certainly find more trendy things here — hyper local, vegetable-centric dishes, street food, cured foods etc. — but by and large, this is a city that likes to dance with the one that brought it,” Haram said.</p><p>Hernandez is perhaps the perfect example of this. His Burgerteca menu includes al pastor and enchilada-inspired burgers and sides like mole fries.</p>
Categories: Travel

These 4 Getaways Will Make You Forget You Even Have a Phone in the First Place

Travel and Leisure - Tue, 06/12/2018 - 13:00
<p>Given the news lately, <a href="" target="_blank">the case for unplugging</a> from our smartphones and tablets has never been stronger. While a screenless existence might not be realistic over the long run, a <a href="" target="_blank">digital-detox vacation</a> can offer a temporary escape from constant connectivity. For years, hotels have lured travelers with the promise of a respite from chaotic daily life.</p><p>But now they’re courting guests with full-fledged “recovery” programs that overtly address digital dependency through techniques like mindfulness meditation, short-term silence, and <a href="" target="_blank">forest bathing</a>.</p><p>At Mexico’s <a href="http://grand​" target="_blank">Grand Velas Riviera Maya</a> <em>(doubles from $868, all-inclusive),</em> taking the plunge is an exercise in fun. Families that opt in to the four-day digital-detox program can trade in their electronics for complimentary activities like snorkeling excursions and <a href="" target="_blank">bike tours</a>. If those perks don’t motivate you, the resort’s rule stipulating that guests complete the four-day program before getting their devices back will.</p><p>The <a href="http://thefamily​coppola​" target="_blank">Blancaneaux Lodge</a> <em>(doubles from $289),</em> in Belize, offers a similar incentive structure<em>.</em> As part of the lodge’s Family Face Time Package, travelers who check in their devices during family mealtimes will earn $10 each hour toward a purchase at the gift shop, where they can pick up souvenirs like colorful huipils and hand-carved wooden masks.</p><p>Those who are more serious about their experiment in tech-free living might consider <a href="" target="_blank">Eremito</a> <em>(doubles from $420, all-inclusive),</em> an ascetic retreat in Umbria, Italy, that’s designed to mimic the experience of living in a monastery—albeit one in the rolling hills of the Italian countryside. What the 21-room property lacks in TVs, phones, and Wi-Fi, it makes up for with its pastoral setting and spare but beautiful stone accommodations. The minimalist retreat goes even further with its well-being programming, offering meals from ingredients grown in the hotel’s organic garden, restorative treatments at the hewn-stone spa, and dinners taken in complete silence.</p><p>If you favor a more cutting-edge approach to a <a href="" target="_blank">digital-detox vacation</a>, a stay at the Villa Stéphanie spa resort at <a href="" target="_blank">Brenners Park-Hotel &amp; Spa</a> <em>(doubles from $765) </em>is just the ticket. The German medical spa, which is renowned for its weight-loss and detox program, has installed an Internet “kill switch” in each of its 15 guest rooms, giving guests the option to completely disconnect during their stays. Flicking the switch activates the copper grid in the walls, which in turn blocks out 96 percent of the surrounding radio waves and Wi-Fi signals. It’s the next best thing to self-control.</p>
Categories: Travel

This Jet Lag App Will Help You Adjust to New Time Zones Quickly (Video)

Travel and Leisure - Tue, 06/12/2018 - 12:00
<p>There’s a new app to help you fight what may be the biggest inconvenience associated with traveling outside of your time zone.</p><p>In collaboration with Steven Lockley, Ph.D., an associate professor of medicine and an expert in circadian disorders at Harvard Medical School, <a href="" target="_blank">Timeshifter</a> has developed an app designed to beat jet lag. This “jet lag app” utilizes the latest research in sleep and circadian neuroscience to help frequent fliers and long distance travelers fight daytime fatigue and make the most of their vacations.</p><p><strong>Related:</strong> <a href="" target="_blank">This Tiny Sleep Device Is My Secret to Adjusting to New Time Zones</a></p><p><strong>Related:</strong> <a href="">The Truth Behind Common Jet Lag Myths</a></p><p>What makes this app so unique is that you can personalize it to your particular needs. “The problems caused by jet lag cannot be tackled using generic advice, which is oversimplistic and can often be counterproductive, making jet lag worse,” Lockley said on the <a href="" target="_blank">Timeshifter website</a>. “Each traveler and trip is different and requires a personalized approach taking your sleep pattern, chronotype, flight plan, and a range of personal preferences into account.”</p><p>When you first download the app, Timeshifter will prompt you to enter your name, gender, age, and the times you usually fall asleep and wake up. You can get even more specific with your preferences in the “settings” section; these include whether you would like to use caffeine or melatonin as a means to fight jet lag, your chronotype (e.g. early bird versus night owl), and if you want to start adjusting pre-travel.</p><img alt="Timeshifter app "src=""><p>After you enter your first trip, Timeshifter will tell you what you need to do (and when you need to do it) to most easily adjust to local time, such as taking a nap, avoiding light, drinking caffeine (if that is one of your preferences), and looking at bright light. The app will send you advice notifications throughout the day, and the “practicality” filter makes it so that it is applicable to the real world. You can also use the jet lag app offline, so you know whether you should stay awake if you're mid-flight and the flight crew has dimmed the lights. There is even a Quick Turnaround<sup>TM</sup> feature for business travelers taking short trips who do not need to fully adjust to the local time.</p><img alt="Timeshifter app helps you adjust to new time zones "src=""><p>“Helping travelers overcome jet lag is a perfect example of how mobile devices will improve our lives in unexpected ways, and represents a paradigm shift in jet lag solutions,” Mickey Beyer-Clausen, CEO of Timeshifter, told <a href="" target="_blank">PR Newswire</a>. “We are thrilled to finally put an end to all the jet lag myths and misinformation out there, and instead offer an effective tool that truly addresses the underlying cause of jet lag.”</p><p><em>Timeshifter is now available for <a href=";mt=8" target="_blank">iOS</a> and <a href="" target="_blank">Android</a>. Individual jet lag plans cost $9.99, and an annual subscription is $24.99.</em></p>
Categories: Travel

Should You Buy That Cheap Spirit Airlines Ticket?

Travel and Leisure - Tue, 06/12/2018 - 11:02
<p>When <a href="" target="_blank">searching for flights</a> on sites like Kayak or Expedia and sorting by lowest price, you'll likely spot some options from Spirit Airlines. But is flying with the budget carrier worth it? </p><p>Spirit is headquartered out of Miramar, Florida and they’re committed to offering you the lowest possible price, which they offer by starting you out with a “BareFare.” It’s a bare-bones ticket, and all add-ons including seat assignments, bags, and extra legroom will cost you. The idea is that if you cut out all the extras most airlines charge for automatically, you’ll be left with a cheap ticket and given the option to pay only for what you need.</p><p>Spirit operates about 400 flights every day, and covers 60 destinations within the U.S., Latin America, and the Caribbean. They’re also considering <a href="" target="_blank">expanding to offer more international flights</a>.</p><p><strong>Related:</strong> <a href="" target="_blank">Should You Buy That Cheap Ryanair Ticket?</a></p><p>When sorting through the internet’s thoughts on Spirit Airlines, one thing is clear: People appreciate the fact that they’re upfront about all the things they don’t provide. You tend to get into trouble with Spirit when you don’t realize they’re going to charge you for things like carry-on bags.</p><p>Here are all the questions you have about flying Spirit, answered:</p><h2>Can I carry on a bag?</h2><p>It better be small. One personal item, "<a href="" target="_blank">something like a laptop bag or purse</a>" is included with Bare Fare, and it must be smaller than 18" x 14" x 8". To bring a more substantial carry-on that needs to go into the overhead bin, you will be charged an <a href="" target="_blank">extra fee</a>. Lance Ulanoff says on <em><a href="" target="_blank">Medium</a></em>, “They were happy to accommodate a satchel or backpack (provided it was small enough) to slide under the seat in front of me, but I’d have to pay $45 to bring on my suitcase. If I didn’t pay for my carry-on in advance, it would cost me more at the airport.”</p><h2>How is check-in?</h2><p>Spirit has an app, and Ulanoff said he was able to use the app to add his boarding pass to his digital wallet. But if you’re not prepared, Spirit sometimes isn't the most helpful when you show up at the airport, according to Jonelle F. on <a href=";utm_campaign=www_review_share_popup&amp;utm_medium=copy_link&amp;utm_source=(direct)" target="_blank">Yelp</a>.</p><p>“The check-in wasn't easy. You can't go up to the counter to check-in if you choose. You must check-in at the automated station, weigh your own bags and tag your own cases,” Jonelle wrote. “There was a long line, but we got to the airport in time, so that wasn't a problem. This was the problem, the fact that bag check is $50 PER CHECKED BAG!!!!!”</p><p><strong>Related: </strong><a href="" target="_blank">Should You Buy That Cheap WOW Air Ticket?</a></p><h2>Are there any amenities?</h2><p><a href="" target="_blank">Spirit Airlines does not currently offer Wi-Fi</a>, but it will <a href="" target="_blank">become the first U.S. budget airline to do so this fall</a>.</p><p>“They offer no Wi-Fi on any flights. They have no TVs and no entertainment what so ever. They have no power, even in their upfront seats,” Brittany F. wrote on <a href=";utm_campaign=www_review_share_popup&amp;utm_medium=copy_link&amp;utm_source=(direct)" target="_blank">Yelp</a>.</p><p>In terms of other amenities, it sounds like no beverage service means no beverage service; They even charge for water, Jonelle pointed out. Beyond that, your personal space is pretty compact, and your seats are unlikely to recline.</p><p>“Inside my Spirit Airlines airplane, I found clean, spare looking blue leather-covered seats. Sure enough, mine did not recline. In place of a seat pocket, there was what looked like a crisscrossed bungy cord. The fold-down tray table was the size of an iPad mini. There was no screen or technology of any sort on the clean, curved back of the seat in front of me,” Ulanoff said.</p><h2>Can you sit together?</h2><p>Yes, but you have to buy a block of seats. “Spirit makes no guarantees that you'll be able to sit with your tribe unless you reserve a block of seats in advance at a cost ranging from $1 to $50 per seat,” David Landsel said on <a href="" target="_blank">Airfare Watchdog</a>.</p><h2>What’s the legroom like?</h2><p>You can stretch your legs, but it’ll cost you. (Are you sensing a pattern here?) The nice thing is that at least Spirit is completely transparent that if you’re interested in not being cramped, you’ll have to pay for it. If you want extra leg room, you can pay for the <a href="" target="_blank">Big Front Seat</a>. (Yes, that’s really what it’s called.)</p><p>“Spirit's Big Front Seat product (a row of larger, comfier seats with a relatively generous 36" pitch at the front of the plane, starting at $12 per flight) is actually terrific value, when seats are available,” Landsel said.</p><p>Landsel says the Big Front Seat tends to be worth it because it allows you to book an actual seat, instead of leaving your seat assignment to chance. The only issue is that there might not be Big Front Seats available when you book.</p><h2>Is the plane clean?</h2><p>Ulanoff said both his Spirit Air flights were clean and the cabin crew was particularly vigilant about taking passengers' trash. On the flip side, Brittany F. on <a href=";utm_campaign=www_review_share_popup&amp;utm_medium=copy_link&amp;utm_source=(direct)" target="_blank">Yelp</a> said her aircraft was dirty. So you'll probably be OK, but know you're taking your chances.</p><h2>What’s the overall vibe?</h2><p>Ulanoff said the in-flight humor was certainly “spirited.” Obviously, we’re not booking flights based on the flight attendants' jokes, but it’s good to know that there will be some sky-high laughing involved. “Right before we deplaned, [the flight attendant] said, ‘If you wish to make any complaints, its ‘,’” Ulanoff noted. Good one.</p><p>Ultimately, it sounds like Spirit Airlines is a perfect solution for a cheap, short flight. That’s what Landsel suggests; He flew from San Diego to Las Vegas and said that’s really the best use of a Spirit ticket. With the fact that they’re charging for water and not offering reclining seats, you might not want to trek across the country with Spirit. Similarly, if you’re going somewhere for a long stretch of time, Spirit might not be the way to go, because it costs a lot to carry on or check a substantial bag. But for a short trip where you don’t need a lot of outfit choices, why not put up with the tiny trays and lack of Wi-Fi (for now) for a ticket that’s well under $100?</p>
Categories: Travel

Why Tbilisi Is the Coolest City You've Never Been To

Travel and Leisure - Tue, 06/12/2018 - 10:59
<p>Sophisticated travelers started waking up to the allures of <a href="" target="_blank">Georgia</a>, a small country in the Caucasus, a few years ago, as its amber wines racked up international accolades and the appointment of Georgia-born Demna Gvasalia as Balenciaga’s creative director raised the nation’s profile in the <a href="" target="_blank">fashion</a> world.</p><img alt="Cafe at the Rooms Hotel Tbilisi "src=""><p>With all Georgia has to offer—picturesque landscapes, a fascinating collision of cultural influences, and did we mention the wine?—it’s a wonder tourism hasn’t skyrocketed sooner. For a first-timer, a stop in the capital city of Tbilisi is a must. </p><p>Check in to <strong><a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank">Rooms</a> </strong><em>(doubles from $174)</em>, then hit the town to sample cheesy <em>khachapuri</em>, sip natural wines, explore sights like <strong><a href="" target="_blank">Narikala Fortress</a></strong>, and dance till sunrise at <a href="" target="_blank"><strong>Spacehall</strong></a><em> </em>and <strong><a href="" target="_blank">Bassiani</a></strong>. Save room in your suitcase for souvenirs—Tbilisi’s many concept shops are the best places to find the homegrown labels that are changing the country’s style landscape. These are the ones to look for. </p><h2><a href="" target="_blank">Chaos Concept Store</a></h2><p>Find clothing and accessories from Georgian designers (including <a href="" target="_blank">Nicolas Grigorian</a> and Chaos cofounder <a href="" target="_blank">Gola Damian</a>) alongside funkier pieces by international brands, like buzzy <a href="" target="_blank">Tokyo</a>-based jewelry line <a href="" target="_blank">Ambush</a> and British women’s-wear label <a href="" target="_blank">Shrimps</a>. <a href="" target="_blank">The space</a> is pared down, with a scattering of cheeky tableaux, a rumpled bed, a Ping-Pong table, and a skate ramp.</p><h2><a href="" target="_blank">Fabrike</a></h2><p>This Soviet-era former garment factory opened as a <a href="" target="_blank">hotel and urban marketplace</a> in 2016, with restaurants, bars, boutiques, and artists’ workshops. Don’t miss studio store <a href="" target="_blank">Flying Painter</a>, where three Georgian artists sell kaleidoscopic apparel and hand-painted ceramics, or the stellar lineup of home-goods vendors, including <a href="" target="_blank">Plant Shop</a>, <a href="" target="_blank">Funduki</a>, and <a href="" target="_blank">Ceramic Studio 1300.</a></p><img alt="The Bridge of Peace is pedestrian bridge over the Kura River in Tbilisi, Georgia. "src=""><h2><a href="" target="_blank">Matériel</a></h2><p>For a glimpse of where Georgian fashion is headed, look no further than this style incubator. Throughout the year, <a href="" target="_blank">Matériel</a> releases small seasonal collections by several emerging designers. The result is an eclectic assortment of distinctive pieces, from <a href="" target="_blank">Aleksandre Akhalkatsishvili</a>’s slouchy suiting to <a href="" target="_blank">Lado Bokuchava</a>’s asymmetrical tops and skirts. </p><h2><a href="" target="_blank">Chardin One</a></h2><p>At this <a href="" target="_blank">one-stop shop</a>, expect ultrafeminine apparel—think ethereal floral gowns, billowy skirts, and pale pink blouses—from Georgian brands <a href="" target="_blank">Diana Kvariani</a>, <a href="" target="_blank">Maturelli</a>, <a href="" target="_blank">Atelier Kikala</a>, and more. </p>
Categories: Travel

Anthony Bourdain Memorials Are Popping up at Restaurants Around the World

Travel and Leisure - Tue, 06/12/2018 - 07:40
<p>In the immediate days following <a href="" target="_blank">Anthony Bourdain’s death</a>, fans are searching for ways to pay homage to the chef-turned-writer-turned-TV host.</p><p>Funeral plans are currently on hold as Bourdain’s body remains in France due to bureaucratic red tape. “They won’t be shipping his remains back for a couple of days because of formalities,” Bourdain’s mom, Gladys, <a href="" target="_blank">told the <em>New York Post</em></a>.</p><p>Funeral arrangements are in the hands of Bourdain’s ex-wife, Ottavia Busia, as she is legally next of kin. Busia and Bourdain separated in 2016 but never officially divorced. They have an 11-year-old daughter together, Ariane Bourdain.</p><p><strong>Related: </strong><a href="" target="_blank">Samantha Brown on Anthony Bourdain: 'There Will Never Be Another'</a></p><p>On Instagram, Busia posted a picture of their daughter, writing, “She was amazing. So strong and brave. She wore the boots you bought her. I hope you are having a good trip, wherever you are.”</p><p>“Although they’re separated, she’ll be in charge of whatever happens,” Gladys said. “We haven’t talked for a couple days. I’m sure she’s as broken up as I am.”</p><p>Bourdain was dating Italian actress and director Asia Argento at the time of his death. In a statement on Twitter, Argento said she was “beyond devastated.” “My thoughts are with his family,” she wrote.</p><p>Bourdain's remains are in Alsace, France after investigators performed toxicology reports “solely to give the family more information about the motivations and the cause of death,” Christian de Rocquigny, the local prosecutor in charge of the investigation in Alsace, <a href="" target="_blank">told the <em>New York Times</em></a>. “We have no indication that he was consuming alcohol the days before his death or changed his behavior.”</p><img alt="Mourners Leave Flowers At Anthony Bourdain's Former Restaurant, After His Suicide Death "src=""><p>In the meantime, impromptu Bourdain memorials are popping up all over the world. One memorial was created outside <a href="" target="_blank">Brasserie Les Halles</a> in New York City, the restaurant where he worked as executive chef while writing his breakout book, “Kitchen Confidential.”</p><p>A smaller memorial has begun to form at CNN Center in Atlanta.</p><p>And restaurant owners around the world who were impacted by a visit from Bourdain are also paying tribute. Bún Chả Hương Liên in Hanoi, Vietnam — where <a href="" target="_blank">Bourdain famously dined with President Barack Obama</a> — posted about their gratitude for his visit. The plastic stools where the two Americans sat are now preserved behind glass.</p><p>Cooks in Philadelphia met up for <a href="" target="_blank">an impromptu Bourdain barbecue</a>; Mac’s Club Deuce, <a href="" target="_blank">a famous dive bar in Miami, held a Friday night memorial</a>; Xi’an Famous Foods, a Szechuan restaurant in New York City, <a href="" target="_blank">donated its net sales on Friday to the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline</a>.</p><p>Over the weekend, CNN aired tribute programming to Bourdain, including a heartfelt segment from <a href="" target="_blank">Anderson Cooper</a>.</p>
Categories: Travel

Here's How You Can Spend the Night Glamping Inside Disney World’s Pandora Theme Park

Travel and Leisure - Tue, 06/12/2018 - 07:26
<p>If you’ve ever dreamt of hitting the snooze button inside a Disney theme park, you may want to set your sights beyond a night in <a href="" target="_blank">Cinderella Castle</a>. This summer, Walt Disney World will allow two guests to spend the night “glamping” inside one the theme park for the first time ever.</p><p><a href="" target="_blank">Pandora — The World of Avatar</a> has become one of the busiest and most beloved lands in Walt Disney World since it opened last spring, and come July, one lucky Disney fan and their guest will have the immersive area themed to James Cameron’s blockbuster film entirely to themselves.</p><p>As part of a new Walt Disney World D-Camp contest, the winner will get to spend the night in a tent on the glowing grounds and wake up to sunrise over Pandora’s floating mountains. (Better yet, they’ll easily be the first on board <a href="" target="_blank">Flight of Passage</a>.)</p><p>Luxury camping, which has recently made its way to <a href="" target="_blank">Mt. Rushmore</a>, Los Angeles’ <a href="" target="_blank">Rodeo Drive</a>, and even <a href="" target="_blank">into the dictionary</a> may have finally landed at Florida’s biggest tourist attraction, but to make it into the parks after-hours, you’ll need more than just a credit card deposit. You’ll need luck.</p><p>Disney’s sleepover within the bioluminescent flora and fauna on Pandora is happening for one night only, and will only have one winner and their guest, making it an ultra-exclusive opportunity that isn't likely to come around again.</p><p>To enter, hopeful explorers should visit the <a href="" target="_blank">D-Camp contest website</a> and share a video explaining why they’re in need of an escape. All entries must be received before June 22.</p>
Categories: Travel

Christie Brinkley and Sailor Brinkley-Cook Are Out-modeling Each Other All Over the South of France

Travel and Leisure - Tue, 06/12/2018 - 06:56
<p>If you’re looking for some <a href="" target="_blank">mother-daughter vacation inspiration</a>, look no further than supermodel Christie Brinkley and her gorgeous offspring, Sailor Brinkley-Cook. The stunning duo has been spending a little family time in the sun, soaking up all the fun the South of France has to offer, and posting their favorite moments on Instagram.</p><p>According to the <a href="" target="_blank"><em>Daily Mail</em></a>, the pair has been staying at the <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank">Hotel du Cap-Eden-Roc</a> on a trip to Antibes and St. Tropez over the last few days. The 19th-century hotel, described on its website as "a legendary sanctuary with a distinguished guest list of royalty, dignitaries and Hollywood stars,” boasts 33 seafront villas, 22 acres of private gardens, a saltwater pool, seaside spa, private pier, tennis courts, and more, meaning there are plenty of activities to keep the women busy on their bonding excursion.</p><img alt="Instagram image of Christie Brinkley at Eden Roc, in France "src=""><p>The Brinkley ladies also made time to enjoy some of the best local sights, including the hotel’s hanging ropes, strung up above the beautiful Mediterranean sea. In an Instagram video, Christie showed off her daughter’s impressive gymnastic skills, captioning the clip, “hangin' with Sailor.”</p><p><strong>Related: </strong><a href="" target="_blank">Reese Witherspoon Just Dished on All the Hilarious Things Her Mom Carries in Her Travel Bag</a></p><p>Christie even shared a throwback snap of her very first time at the hotel, which happened to be a photoshoot for Chanel.</p><p>Meanwhile, Sailor showed off her daring side, jumping right into the sea.</p><p>She also shared a few images of her mother modeling down the streets of France. Yep, she's still got it.</p><p>Of course, you don’t need to go to France to have a good time with your mom. Here are the <a href="" target="_blank">best trips to take with your mother all around the globe</a>. </p>
Categories: Travel

A Cartoon Network Theme Park Is Coming to Bali and Adults Are Invited, Too

Travel and Leisure - Tue, 06/12/2018 - 06:27
<p>Fans of Powerpuff Girls, Adventure Time, and Ben 10 are going to want to book a trip to paradise. A Cartoon Network-branded theme park is coming to the Bali, and is projected to be complete in 2020.</p><p>The 10-acre park will have water rides, surf rides, wave pools, an entertainment center and more, making it the biggest water park on the island, <a href="" target="_blank">according to Turner Asia Pacific</a>, which is partnering with the MAJ Group to develop the park.</p><p>This is the first Indonesian park to partner with an international brand. It's also a first for Cartoon Network, offering both indoor and outdoor attractions.</p><p>So what can you expect from a Cartoon Network water park? In addition to the cartoon-themed rides, there will also be live performances featuring characters from popular shows.</p><p>“Turner and The MAJ Group share the same vision of creating the ultimate family destination in Indonesia, and the entertainment park will combine world-class design with unparalleled Balinese hospitality,” Ricky Ow, President of Turner Asia Pacific, said in a statement. “Above all, it will offer guests genuine fun powered by Cartoon Network, Asia’s leading kids entertainment brand.”</p><p>The project's developers hope that the park will make Bali a premiere family vacation destination in Asia.</p>
Categories: Travel

This Timelapse Through Botswana Will Make You Want to Book a Spontaneous Safari

Travel and Leisure - Mon, 06/11/2018 - 14:00
<p><a href="" target="_blank">Botswana</a> is a wildlife lover’s paradise, with national parks and reserves covering more than a third of the country's terrain.</p><p>Time-lapse cinematographer <a href="" target="_blank">Tyler Fairbank</a> spent eight days touring Botswana, visiting Chobe National Park, known for its massive elephant herds, the Okavango Delta, the <a href="" target="_blank">Kalahari Desert</a>, and the Makgadikgadi Pan, which is home to meerkats among other species. The meerkats are so accustomed to humans they'll even climb on top of your head and use you as a lookout point to scout for predators, Fairbank told <em>Travel + Leisure</em>.</p><img alt="tyler fairbank safari "src=""><p>“It’s so relaxing [on the Makgadikgadi Pan] because there’re these wide open salt pans that go on endlessly for miles and miles and you can’t see the horizon, it’s amazing,” he said.</p><p>The majority of Fairbank's film — which is made up of 38,000 images — was taken at Chobe National Park.</p><p>“Chobe has tons of lion sightings, but there’s such a good amount of wildlife there that you’re going to see everything you hoped to see,” he said.</p><p>If you've ever wondered what taking a safari is like, the film takes you through an entire trip by plane, car, and even boat. “Many game drives in Botswana are done from the river,” Fairbank said. “It is remarkable to see how relaxed the animals are when approached by boat as opposed to by safari car.”</p><p>For Fairbank, the elephants made the biggest impression.</p><p>“You see elephants nonstop, it’s pretty insane,” Fairbanks said. “You get in the car and as soon as you go outside, you see a herd of elephants. The abundance of them and seeing them all roaming freely like that was a magical thing to witness.”</p>
Categories: Travel

11 Rookie Mistakes to Avoid on Your First Trip to Europe

Travel and Leisure - Mon, 06/11/2018 - 13:01
<p>Jetsetting to Europe for the first time can be both a blessing and a curse. Though you’ll never forget the once-in-a-lifetime moments like first seeing the <a href="" target="_blank">Eiffel Tower</a> or taking a gondola through the canals of <a href="" target="_blank">Venice</a>, if you go unprepared, these beautiful memories can be tarnished by rookie mistakes.</p><p>To avoid all that from happening, we’ve laid out exactly what not to do overseas. Learning from the following rookie mistakes ahead of your trip will minimize the stress of traveling, while also saving you time and money.</p><h2>1. Taking a Cab</h2><p>Nope, not even from the airport. Most major European cities have reliable public transportation, so use it as soon as you arrive. Not only will it give you a better feel of the area, you’ll save money by avoiding high cab fares. And if there’s ever an option to walk, and you're able, don't miss a chance to experience the historic streets.</p><h2>2. Buying Tickets Late</h2><p>Waiting to get museum or popular sight tickets when you’re there is a bad idea. Scrambling last-minute — especially in <a href="" target="_blank">Paris</a> or Rome — will either leave you in a terribly long line or worse, the venue will reach capacity and you may not even be able to enter at all. Do yourself a favor and book all that you want to see in advance.</p><h2>3. Settling for the First Restaurant You See</h2><p>Don’t be surprised if the prix fixe option by the mob of tourists isn’t as good as you’d hope. When it comes to food, don’t take any chances. Do your research and make a separate meal itinerary with reservations to local hot spots that will likely be more affordable or at least worth your money.</p><h2>4. Carrying a Ton of Cash</h2><p>Don’t worry, a lot of places actually take credit cards and we bet you have one in your wallet that won’t charge foreign transactions fees. (If you don't, look into signing up for one.) While it's good to carry some cash, don't carry around a ton.</p><h2>5. Not Spending Plenty of Time Outside</h2><p>Europeans love eating and drinking outdoors, so do as they do. Bring along a picnic blanket, pick up some refreshments at a grocery store, and have one of your meals at a plaza or by a river. It’s a budget-friendly and fun way to switch things up so you aren't constantly dining out.</p><h2>6. Forgetting to Check Your Phone Plan</h2><p>More mobile carriers are incorporating international roaming with their plans. Read through your plan’s details or give the company a quick call a few days before leaving to see if you have data abroad. Don’t miss out on being able to use your Google Maps app.</p><h2>7. Ordering All the Bread and Water</h2><p>You probably think these things are a given, but at many restaurants they’re not free and can quickly drive up your bill. Unless you’re sure you want it, make it a point to refuse that bread basket once you sit down. To cost-effectively steer clear of dehydration, grab a jug of water for a fraction of the cost at a convenient store, fill up a water bottle, and carry it with you.</p><h2>8. Not Claiming Your Refund</h2><p>If you went shopping in Europe, you may be eligible for a VAT refund (<a href="" target="_blank"></a>). All you need to do is ask the retailer for the proper documentation and show it to the proper agents at the airport. The exact processes may work differently in each country, but getting money back makes them all worth a try.</p><h2>9. Ignoring 24-hour Time</h2><p>If you’re on a schedule or have timely plans, we recommend setting your phone to 24-hour, or military time, to make sure you don’t miss anything. I once hung out at the Real Madrid gift shop while the game was already going on because I misread the time — don’t make the same silly mistake I did.</p><h2>10. Downplaying Comfort</h2><p>Regardless of where you’re off to, there will be walking involved and it’s important to pack accordingly. Exploring in uncomfortable attire or footwear is no joke. Don’t be that person who complains and slows others down because you’re dressed inappropriately. Trust me — been there, done that, and it’s awful for everyone. (If you don't already have a go-to travel shoe, here are some <a href="" target="_blank">comfortable, travel-friendly shoes to consider</a>.)</p><h2>11. Neglecting to Smile</h2><p>Even if you remember not to do all the things on this list, there will likely be some bumps along the road. However, you can’t let just any mishap get you down because at the end of the day, you’re on vacation — and probably somewhere beautiful. Take a deep breath, and enjoy yourself.</p>
Categories: Travel

How to Pull Off the Sunglass Trend Every Celebrity Is Wearing This Summer

Travel and Leisure - Mon, 06/11/2018 - 11:00
<p>When you think of “The Matrix,” do you ever think, “Wow, I wish those no-nonsense micro <a href="" target="_blank">sunglasses</a> Keanu Reeves is wearing were socially acceptable for me to wear today”?</p><p>Lucky for you, every celebrity from Bella and <a href="" target="_blank">Gigi Hadid</a> to Lady Gaga has been rocking an updated version of the sleek, geometric ‘90s shades for months now — with no sign of slowing down.</p><p>It's almost as if the Hadid sisters will<em> only</em> be seen in this trend, in fact, showcasing a variety of brands and nuances in line with the "Matrix" aesthetic.</p><p>If “<a href="" target="_blank">sunglass creator to the stars</a>” were a title anyone ever used, <a href="" target="_blank">Poppy Lissiman</a> would have it. Lissiman, a 29-year-old designer from Australia, has created styles that are frequently spotted on notable celebrities out and about town, the Hadids, of course, included. </p><p>Lissiman told <em>Travel + Leisure</em> that, in addition to inspiring her Le Skinny style, "The Matrix" is behind a newer style, inspired by the character Morpheus.</p><p>Lissiman said she finds inspiration for new styles "all over the place." </p><p>"I designed a pair which were inspired by a makeup look I saw on instagram, the shape of eyeshadow on the model’s eyes gave me an idea for a shape I hadn’t seen before," she added.</p><p>Even though micro sunglasses started gaining visibility last season, Lissiman said she predicts the tiny sunglass boom will last. "I think the micro trend is still going to be around for at least another few seasons," she said. "We’ve seen no wane in sales in these styles; if anything it's only getting more popular at the moment."</p><p>While the connection between fashion and “The Matrix” may have been unexpected at first, the Instagram accounts of supermodels and celebrities have helped to propel the micro-sunglass trend into mainstream consciousness.</p><p>If you want to get in on the revamped '90s look, here are some of T+L’s favorite styles of micro sunglasses. If tiny sunglasses still aren't for you, check out some of Poppy Lissiman's <a href="" target="_blank">larger-framed sunglass styles</a>.</p><h2><a href="" target="_blank">Poppy Lissiman</a></h2><img alt="Micro Sunglasses, Poppy Lissiman's Le Skinny in Red "src=""><p>This micro look as been seen on countless celebrities, and the brand just released a new, retro-futuristic iteration called Skinny Demon.</p><p><strong>To buy Skinny Demon</strong>: $115 in various colors from <a href="" target="_blank"></a>.</p><img alt="Micro Sunglasses Made by Poppy Lissiman, Le Skinny "src=""><p><strong>To buy Le Skinny</strong>: $105 in various colors from <a href="" target="_blank"></a>.</p><h2><a href="" target="_blank">Illesteva</a></h2><img alt="Micro Sunglasses from Brand Illesteva "src=""><p><a href="" target="_blank">Kendall Jenner</a> and <a href="" target="_blank">Gigi Hadid</a> have both been photographed in Illesteva's micro cat-eye sunglasses, Marienne.</p><p><strong>To buy</strong>: $190 in various colors on <a data-ecommerce="true" href=";N_Dim=0&amp;Ntk=Entire+Site&amp;Ntt=Illesteva" target="_blank"></a>, <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank"></a>, and <a data-ecommerce="true" href=";currency=USD&amp;countrycode=us&amp;gclid=EAIaIQobChMI2-fZjvK62wIVk8DACh1KcwhVEAQYASABEgLXh_D_BwE" target="_blank"></a>.</p><img alt="Micro Sunglasses from Illesteva, Baxter "src=""><p><strong>To buy</strong>: $230 in various colors on <a data-ecommerce="true" href=";R=812802028829&amp;P_name=Illesteva&amp;Ntt=illesteva&amp;N=0&amp;bmUID=mfasPyg" target="_blank"></a>, <a data-ecommerce="true" href=";currency=USD&amp;countrycode=us&amp;gclid=EAIaIQobChMIkMmmiPW62wIVEdbACh0ysAgVEAQYASABEgJd1PD_BwE" target="_blank"></a>, and <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank"></a>.</p><h2><a href="" target="_blank">Gigi Hadid for Vogue Eyewear</a></h2><img alt="Micro Sunglasses from Vogue Eyewear by Gigi Hadid, Special Collection "src=""><p>Gigi Hadid parntered with Vogue Eyewear to bring you styles she and her A-list peers love. She told T+L they were inspired by two celebrities in particular: Rihanna and her mom, former model Yolanda Hadid. "Rihanna inspires me being more edgy and bold while I look up at my mom for being so classic and simple, yet chic at the same time," she said.</p><p><strong>To buy</strong>: $140 in four colors from <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank"></a>.</p><img alt="Micro Sunglasses from Vogue Eyewear by Gigi Hadid "src=""><p><strong>To buy</strong>: $140 in three colors from <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank"></a>.</p>
Categories: Travel

You Don't Have to Go to the Great Barrier Reef to Swim With Australia’s Wildest Animals

Travel and Leisure - Sun, 06/10/2018 - 14:00
<p>Stretching along <a href="" target="_blank">1,400 miles</a> of Australia’s eastern coast, the <a href="" target="_blank">Great Barrier Reef</a> is one of the greatest natural wonders of the world. Its coral shoals and atolls hold astonishing attractions like the <a href="" target="_blank">Blue Hole</a> and <a href="" target="_blank">rare geological formations</a> found few other places, not to mention a profusion of water-based wildlife.</p><p>Although the Reef remains on many travelers’ bucket lists, in recent years, scientists have raised concerned about damage wreaked on this water wonderland by climate change, including widespread <a href="" target="_blank">coral bleaching</a>. The good news is, eco-conscious tourism might be one way to <a href="" target="_blank">help save the Reef</a>. There are other aquatic adventures to be had around the rest of Australia where visitors can get close to the unique wildlife without the worry of overcrowding or environmental degradation.</p><p>Here are a few places where you can swim with Australia’s marine inhabitants without the many tourists you might encounter along the Great Barrier Reef.</p><h2>Sea lions in Boston Bay, South Australia</h2><img alt="Sea Lions in Western Australia "src=""><p>Swimming with sea lions has to be, hands down, one of the most delightful wildlife experiences in the world. The folks who run <a href="" target="_blank">Adventure Bay Charters</a> out of Port Lincoln on South Australia’s Eyre Peninsula call them “the puppies of the sea,” and it is easy to see why. When the charter boat pulls up to the shallow waters of Seal Cove after a two-hour cruise, the animals practically leap off the beach and into the water, beckoning for the humans onboard to join them. What follows is an hour of swimming, diving, jumping, flipping and general merriment as the sea lions play around and with visitors. This is the exact experience waterproof GoPros were made for. Adult swims start at $205 AUD ($155) per person.</p><p><strong>When to go:</strong> Depending on the charter company you go with, tours tend to operate between September and early June.</p><p><strong>What else to do:</strong> Port Lincoln is a 50-minute flight west of Adelaide on either Rex or Qantas. The town itself is small, but has a lively dining scene with restaurants like <a href="" target="_blank">Del Giorno’s</a> for fresh seafood and gourmet <a href="" target="_blank">Line and Label</a> at Peter Teakle Wines, not to mention a craft brewery, <a href="" target="_blank">Beer Garden Brewing</a>, and upscale accommodations at the <a href="" target="_blank">Port Lincoln Hotel</a>.</p><h2>Whale sharks at Ningaloo Reef, Western Australia</h2><img alt="Whale Shark "src=""><p>Growing up to 40 feet in length and weighing over 20 tons, whale sharks are the largest fish in the world. Though these gentle giants do have teeth, they are filter feeders who migrate through Western Australia’s UNESCO-listed Ningaloo Reef each year to feed in the plankton-rich waters. Only a handful of charter boat companies, including <a href="" target="_blank">Ocean Eco Adventures</a> and <a href="" target="_blank">Live Ningaloo</a>, have licenses to take visitors out to swim with the whale sharks and only 10 people are allowed in the water at a time per shark, so there are no jam-packed tourist boats or crowds of snap-happy sightseers. Once the sharks are located (usually with the aid of spotter planes flying overhead), snorkelers get into the water with guides and swim alongside these languid leviathans. The experience is both awe-inspiring and exhilarating. During the rest of the day trip, you might also spot manta rays, dolphins, turtles and humpback whales, so the whale sharks are just the start.</p><p><strong>When to go:</strong> The whale sharks tend to migrate in through area from mid-April through mid-September, though the best sightings tend to occur May-July.</p><p><strong>What else to do:</strong> The gateway to Ningaloo Reef is the town of Exmouth, about a two-hour flight north of Perth. Many folks stay in town at hotels like the <a href="" target="_blank">Manta Rays Ningaloo Beach Resort</a> and <a href="" target="_blank">Exmouth Escape Resort</a>. However, travelers on a bigger budget can book into <a href="" target="_blank">Sal Salis</a>, a low-impact, safari-style luxury camp right in Cape Range National Park along the coast. On land, folks can hike the dramatic canyons Yardie Creek and the rugged Mandu Mandu Gorge looking for wildlife like black-footed rock wallabies, red kangaroos, dingos, echidnas and emus.</p><h2>Humpback whales on the Sunshine Coast, Queensland</h2><img alt="Humpback Whale "src=""><p>To the south of the Great Barrier Reef along Queensland’s Sunshine Coast, <a href="" target="_blank">Sunreef</a> has been offering humpback whale swims from its base in Mooloolaba since 2014. The company tries to take as low-impact an approach as possible as part of its self-imposed <a href="" target="_blank">code of practice</a>. Only 20 guests are allowed per cruise. The ship avoids mother-calf pairs, maintains a distance of at least 100 meters from the animals, assesses the whale’s behavior for any safety concerns and drops swimmers in the water at a slight remove from the whale, leaving it up to the animal whether to approach or not. Despite the hands-off tactics, the company estimates around 70% of excursions result in in-water interactions between humans and whales. Rates start at $149 AUD ($112) per person.</p><p><strong>When to go:</strong> Humpbacks tend to pass by on their 7,000-mile journey to Antarctica during the Australian winter, with whale-swim charters departing July 6 through October 22 this year.</p><p><strong>What else to do:</strong> The Sunshine coast is about 60 miles north of <a href="" target="_blank">Brisbane</a>, which makes Australia’s third-largest city the ideal base for a day trip up to see the whales. Brisbane’s art scene has been thriving in recent years thanks to the development of the South Bank cultural district with mainstays like the <a href="" target="_blank">Queensland Art Gallery and Gallery of Modern Art</a>. In the Spring Hill neighborhood, <a href="" target="_blank">The Johnson</a> hotel is named after and displays the works of Michael Johnson, one of Australia’s most acclaimed contemporary artists. Be sure to book a table at cookbook author and chef Philip Johnson’s <a href="" target="_blank">E’cco Bistro</a> in the trendy new Skyring Terrace area, where the multi-course tasting menus incorporate seasonal produce from Queensland’s farms and seafood from its waters.</p><h2>Sea turtles on Lord Howe Island, New South Wales</h2><img alt="Marine turtles photographed on the beautiful Ningaloo Reef of western Australia. "src=""><p>World Heritage-listed Lord Howe Island is one of Australia’s best-kept secrets. This tiny paradise is all that remains of an ancient volcanic crater, its forest-covered peaks rising dramatically from the ocean floor of the Tasman Sea about midway between Australia and New Zealand. Only 400 visitors at a time are allowed here, so it’s not long before everyone in town knows your name. The island is also home to hundreds of thousands of seabirds, 500 species of fish, 90 types of coral and enormous green sea turtles and endangered hawksbill turtles with whom you can simply hop in the water and snorkel alongside thanks to tour operators like <a href="" target="_blank">Islander Cruises</a> and <a href="" target="_blank">Marine Adventures</a>. Snorkeling cruises cost $50-$60 AUD ($38-$45) per person.</p><p><strong>When to go:</strong> Lord Howe Island’s sub-tropical climate is temperate all year round, but the best time to see the turtles is November through April.</p><p><strong>What else to do:</strong> Lord Howe Island is about a two-hour flight from either Sydney or Brisbane on Qantas.<a href="" target="_blank"> Arajilla Retreat</a> has just 12 suites dotted around its lush, tropical gardens while the luxurious<a href="" target="_blank"> Capella Lodge</a> is set off by itself on the island’s quieter south side. The island offers a plethora of hikes ranging from easy walks to challenging climbs, after which you can enjoy a DIY beach barbecue at<a href="" target="_blank"> Ned’s Beach</a>.</p><h2>Wild dolphins in Rockingham, Western Australia</h2><img alt="Rockingham Dolphins "src=""><p>Waterparks offering “swimming with dolphins” are a dime a dozen in vacation destinations around the world. What sets this excursion apart, though, is the fact that participants get to visit wild dolphins on their own terms.<a href="" target="_blank"> Rockingham Wild Encounters</a> has been providing these tours since 1989, so they actually know many of the 200 bottlenose dolphins who live in the area by name, and the focus is firmly on education and conservation as guides provide insight into the dolphins’ behavior, life cycle and the environment issues that impact them. But let’s not undersell the fun. While snorkelers are in the water, the dolphins tend to swim and play, hunt fish and even mate. Best of all, the company has a 99% success rate of locating and getting people in the water with the wild dolphins on any given day.</p><p><strong>When to go:</strong> Rockingham Wild Encounters offers these tours from September through early June with prices starting at $205 AUD ($155) per person.</p><p><strong>What else to do:</strong> Rockingham is a 45-minute drive south of Perth, which has recently seen the debut of myriad new hotels including the luxurious<a href="" target="_blank"> COMO The Treasury</a>, the bohemian<a href="" target="_blank"> Tribe Perth</a> and the just-opened<a href=";language=en_US" target="_blank"> Westin Perth</a>. The city’s riverfront<a href="" target="_blank"> Elizabeth Quay</a> has undergone a huge redevelopment with restaurants, bars and shops, while the Northbridge neighborhood has become the city’s arts hubs thanks to institutions like the State Theatre Centre, the Perth Cultural Centre and the Art Gallery of WA.</p><h2>Great white sharks in the Neptune Islands, South Australia</h2><img alt="Great White Shark in Western Australia "src=""><p>Want to swim with some of the Earth’s most fearsome predators? The Neptune Islands off South Australia’s Eyre Peninsula are one of the only places in the country where you can go cage diving with great white sharks. You might also be lucky enough to see some of the other types of sharks that frequent the area, like hammerheads, bronze whalers and makos as well as dolphins, orcas and more. Long-running operators include <a href="" target="_blank">Calypso Star Charters</a> for day tours and <a href="" target="_blank">Rodney Fox Shark Expeditions</a> for multi-day sea safaris with the option of staying in either a surface cage or scuba diving in one that descends to the ocean floor.</p><p><strong>When to go:</strong> Tours run year-round.</p><p><strong>What else to do:</strong> Port Lincoln will be your base for this one as well. Plan to stay a few extra days so you can spend time with bespoke tour operators like <a href="" target="_blank">Goin’ Off Safaris</a> and <a href="" target="_blank">Australian Wildlife Adventures</a> who can arrange activities like scenic helicopter flights over the dramatic coastline, beach fishing and picnics, and an oyster bed tour and tasting with <a href="" target="_blank">Pure Coffin Bay Oysters</a>.</p>
Categories: Travel