Travel

How a Backpacking Trip Could Make You a More Successful Person

Travel and Leisure - Sat, 08/04/2018 - 12:00
<p>Taking a <a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/trip-ideas/backpacking-trips" target="_blank">backpacking trip</a> can sometimes mean roughing it, but a new study shows the benefits this can have to your overall mental health and problem-solving abilities.</p><p>The study published this May in the<em> Journal of Travel Research</em> titled <a href="http://journals.sagepub.com/doi/abs/10.1177/0047287518768457" target="_blank">“Backpacker Personal Development, Generalized Self-Efficacy, and Self-Esteem: Testing a Structural Model,”</a> provides an explanation on how backpacking affects individuals’ self-efficacy (their perception of how well they can cope in various situations presented to them) and self-esteem.</p><p>Researchers from China's Sun Yat-sen University and Shaanxi Normal University and Australia's Edith Cowan University surveyed close to 500 Chinese and Western backpackers across a one-year period, defining backpacking as a travel style taken by those who prefer low-budget accommodation, longer holidays, flexible itineraries, meeting other travelers, and engaging in social activities.</p><p>Most respondents were between the ages of 21 to 35 and had taken at least three backpacking trips, with Western participants consisting of British, American, French, German, Dutch, Spanish, and Polish travelers.</p><p>The two groups were chosen to assess differences when coming from collectivist (in the case of Chinese backpackers) and individualistic (in the case of Western backpackers) cultural groups, according to researchers.</p><p>In Western backpackers, results showed that backpacking leads to acquired capabilities like effective communication, decision-making, adaptability, and problem-solving, all of which contribute to an increase in self-efficacy.</p><p>For Chinese backpackers, acquiring skills like time and money management, language development, stress management, and self-motivation provided the biggest increase in self-efficacy. An increase in self-efficacy often correlated to an increase in self-esteem in both groups.</p><p><strong>Related:</strong> <a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/trip-ideas/backpacking-trips/backpacking-trip-gear" target="_blank">Everything You Need for Your First Backpacking Trip</a></p><p>"We believe that when people travel to different parts of the world, especially when they travel outside their cultural comfort zone, they will see something different and that will give them a different perspective," professor Sam Huang, one of the study's researchers, told the <em><a href="http://www.abc.net.au/news/2018-07-01/more-than-fun-researchers-investigate-value-of-backpacking/9920470" target="_blank">Australian Broadcasting Corporation</a></em>.</p><p>"It's not a waste of time, it's not a waste of money, it's a worthwhile investment ... because you can grow your self-confidence and you increase your self-efficacy, which is important in your workplace; and you increase your self-esteem which is quite important to maintain your mental health."</p>
Categories: Travel

People Over 40 Shouldn't Work More Than 3 Days a Week, Study Says (Video)

Travel and Leisure - Sat, 08/04/2018 - 11:30
<p>Let’s be honest: nobody is really a fan of the five-day work week. But if you want a reason to work less, science has your back. If you’re over the age of 40, at least.</p><p>According to a report published in the <a href="https://melbourneinstitute.unimelb.edu.au/downloads/working-paper-series/wp2016n07.pdf" target="_blank"><i>Melbourne Institute Worker Paper</i></a>, those over the age of 40 are at their most productive when they work three days a week or less.</p><p>The researchers came to this conclusion after following 3,000 male and 3,500 female volunteers, <a href="https://en.newsner.com/family/people-over-40-should-only-work-3-days-a-week-study-finds/" target="_blank"><i>Newser</i></a> explained. During the study, researchers asked the participants to complete cognitive tests and analyzed their work habits, memory, executive reasoning, and abstract reasoning.</p><p><strong>Related:</strong> <a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/trip-ideas/senior-travel/tips-for-traveling-solo-after-retirement" target="_blank">5 Tips for Traveling Solo After Retirement</a></p><p>The cognitive tests included asking the volunteers to read text backwards, read words aloud, and match numbers and letters under time pressure. As <a href="https://www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/entry/three-day-week-could-be-best-for-workers-aged-40-and-over-study-suggests_uk_57160d58e4b0636a3f6d3373?guccounter=1&amp;guce_referrer_us=aHR0cHM6Ly93d3cuZ29vZ2xlLmNvbS8&amp;guce_referrer_cs=i-XId-wEin-gSdBXXCgq1A" target="_blank"><i>HuffPost</i></a> explained, the participants' cognitive performance improved as the researchers increased their working hours up to 25 hours. However, after 25 hours the researchers found that performance began to decline in both the male and female volunteers.</p><p>Perhaps most surprisingly, <i>HuffPost</i> noted, volunteers who were tasked with working 55 hours a week showed cognitive results that were worse than those who were retired or unemployed.</p><p>"Many countries are going to raise their retirement ages by delaying the age at which people are eligible to start receiving pension benefits. This means that more people continue to work in the later stages of their life," study co-author and Keio University professor Colin McKenzie told <a href="https://www.thetimes.co.uk/tto/career/article4734612.ece?CMP=OTH-gnws-standard-2016_04_17" target="_blank"><i>The Times</i></a>. "The degree of intellectual stimulation may depend on working hours. Work can be a double-edged sword, in that it can stimulate brain activity, but at the same time long working hours can cause fatigue and stress, which potentially damage cognitive functions.”</p><p>McKenzie noted their research points out that “differences in working hours are important for maintaining cognitive functioning in middle-aged and elderly adults” and that working part-time can "be effective in maintaining cognitive ability.”</p><p>So, for your health, please <a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/syndication/study-four-day-workweek-increased-productivity" target="_blank">stop working so hard</a>.</p>
Categories: Travel

Get Rid of Your House — This Chic New Hotel Will Make You Want to Move to Australia

Travel and Leisure - Sat, 08/04/2018 - 10:02
<p><a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/travel-tips/best-time-to-visit-australia" target="_blank">Melbourne</a> has often been called one of the most livable cities on earth. Despite being Australia’s second largest city, it has an almost bucolic feel, and tourists flock there for a taste of its many cultural and <a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/food-drink/cocktails-spirits/melbournes-craft-cocktails" target="_blank">culinary</a> experiences — last year the city had 2.8 million visitors, according to Tourism Research Australia. Yet for years, the hotel scene was lacking something. <a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/worlds-best/city-hotels-in-australia-new-zealand-south-pacific">Plenty of high-end hotel brands had made their mark on Melbourne</a>, but travelers on the hunt for a luxurious, locally owned boutique property came up short. </p><img alt="United Places hotel in Melbourne "src="https://cdn-image.travelandleisure.com/sites/default/files/styles/1600x1000/public/1532710740/melbourne-united-places-UNIPLACE0718.jpg?itok=iLVgOzcI"><p>Enter the new <a href="https://unitedplaces.com.au" target="_blank">United Places Botanic Gardens,</a> the passion project of local developer David Rubenstein. Set against the lush backdrop of South Yarra’s Royal Botanic Gardens, the 12-suite property is an indulgent yet understated home away from home. Guests are guaranteed the celebrity treatment: Each suite has a dedicated butler to provide round-the-clock service, share insider knowledge, and assist in trip planning. A decadent in-room breakfast is a given, but should you crave a romantic meal al fresco or a night on the town, your butler is at the ready to plan it all.</p><p>The hotel's aesthetic is one of quiet luxury, more about providing guests the ultimate in comfort and relaxation than over-the-top opulence. The modernist concrete façade is clean-lined and unobtrusive; inside, each of the nine one-bedroom suites and three two-bedroom suites has a distinct look and feel, but all come with oversized tubs, sinuous velvet sofas, private terraces, and tony amenities like Le Labo Santal 33 bath products and award-winning Sullivan’s Cove whiskey in the minibar. At the restaurant Matilda, local star Scott Pickett cooks contemporary Australian fare (think kangaroo tartare with fermented peppers and smoked crab with prawn butter) over an open fire.</p><img alt="United Places hotel in Melbourne "src="https://cdn-image.travelandleisure.com/sites/default/files/styles/1600x1000/public/1532710740/melbourne-united-places-room-UNIPLACE0718.jpg?itok=AzS4W9pQ"><p>Despite the lengthy list of amenities, United Places' greatest strength is its location, a literal stone's throw from one of Australia’s most magnificent green spaces. After you've explored the Royal Botanic Gardens, don't miss South Yarra's other highlights, like the National Gallery of Victoria and French bistro Entrecôte South Yarra, or spend a day wandering Melbourne’s action-packed Central Business District (CBD). It's just ten minutes away by car, but if you've got time to spare, take the scenic route: a two-mile stroll through the Botanic Gardens and over the Princes Bridge.</p><p> </p><p><strong><em>Our series <a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/reasons-to-travel" target="_blank">Reasons to Travel Now</a> highlights the news, events, and openings that have us scoping out plane tickets each day.</em></strong></p>
Categories: Travel

Guy Rubin's 19-day China and Hong Kong Itinerary

Travel and Leisure - Sat, 08/04/2018 - 09:37
<p><a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/travel-agent/guy-rubin" target="_blank">Guy Rubin</a> is a member of <a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/a-list" target="_blank">Travel + Leisure’s A-List</a>, a collection of the top travel advisors in the world, and can help plan your perfect getaway. Below is an example of the type of itineraries he creates. To work with Guy, you can contact him directly at guy@imperialtours.net.</p><h2>Day 1: Arrive in Beijing</h2><p>Upon arrival, transfer via private car to your hotel.</p><p><strong>Stay</strong>: Rosewood Beijing</p><h2>Day 2: Beijing</h2><p>Visit Tiananmen Square and the Forbidden City, with special access to the Shufangzhai Palace. Later, take a walking tour of Beijing's <em>hutongs</em>, traditional narrow alleys.</p><p><strong>Stay</strong>: Rosewood Beijing</p><h2>Day 3: Great Wall</h2><p>Visit a section of the Great Wall, touring it with a conservation specialist and enjoying a special banquet lunch.</p><p><strong>Stay</strong>: Rosewood Beijing</p><h2>Day 4: Beijing</h2><p>Visit the Panjiayuan Market and the Imperial Summer Palace. In the evening, take a closed-door nighttime tour of the Temple of Heaven.</p><p><strong>Stay</strong>: Rosewood Beijing</p><h2>Days 5-6: Xi'an</h2><p>Head to the airport and fly into Xi'an, where you will be met by a private driver to transfer you to your hotel. The next day, visit the famous Terracotta Warriors and tour the old City Wall and Grand Mosque. In the afternoon, enjoy a private dumpling-making lesson</p><p><strong>Stay</strong>: Sofitel Legend Hotel</p><h2>Days 7-8: Guilin</h2><p>In the morning, visit the Shaanxi Provincial Museum to explore the Guilin Tang Murals restoration room with an expert. Then, fly to Guilin where you will be transfered to your hotel. The next day, sail the Li River on a bamboo raft before taking a cultural tour of village life.</p><p><strong>Stay</strong>: Banyan Tree Yangshuo</p><h2>Days 9-10: Hangzhou</h2><p>Fly into Hangzhou and transfer to your hotel. The next morning, take a private tai chi lesson before embarking on a private gondola ride on West Lake. Later, tour the city's Buddhist Temple District before seeing the spectacular show "Enduring Memories of Hangzhou."</p><p><strong>Stay</strong>: Four Seasons Hotel Hangzhou At West Lake</p><h2>Days 11-14: Shanghai</h2><p>Tour the tea fields around Hangzhou before departing for Shanghai. The next day, take an architectural history tour of the French Concession with an expert, before heading out with a personal shopper. On your third day in town, tour the Zhujiajiao Water Town neighborhood, Yu Garden, and the Old City. On your last full day, take a tour in a vintage motorcycle sidecar, as a Chinese art expert teaches you about the city's contemporary art scene.</p><p><strong>Stay</strong>: Capella Shanghai, Jian Ye Li </p><h2>Days 15-18: Hong Kong</h2><p>Fly to Hong Kong, where you will be staying at the trendy Upper House hotel. On your first full day in Hong Kong, take a helicopter tour over the Hong Kong Skyline, visiting Victoria Peak, Aberdeen Harbor, and Wong Tai Sin temple. The next day, tour Lantau Island, as well as Tai O and the Tian Tan Buddha. The last day, take a walking tour of the city, visiting Barrier Gate, the A-Ma Temple, St. Paul's Cathedral, and Senado Square.</p><p><strong>Stay</strong>: Upper House</p><h2>Day 19: Depart from Hong Kong</h2><p>Transfer to the airport for your onward flight.<br /> </p>
Categories: Travel

Stan Godwyn's 28-day China Itinerary

Travel and Leisure - Sat, 08/04/2018 - 09:31
<p><a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/travel-agent/stan-godwyn" target="_blank">Stan Godwyn</a> is a member of <a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/a-list" target="_blank">Travel + Leisure’s A-List</a>, a collection of the top travel advisors in the world, and can help plan your perfect getaway. Below is an example of the type of itineraries he creates. To work with Jonathan, you can contact him directly at stan.g@travelstore.com.</p><h2>Day 1: Arrive in Beijing</h2><p>Upon arrival, transfer to hotel via private car. </p><p><strong>Stay</strong>: Cours Et Pavillons</p><h2>Day 2: Mutianyu and Ming Tombs</h2><p>Visit the Great Wall, parts of which date back to the Qin Dynasty in 221 BC. The portion near Beijing was mostly built in the Ming Dynasty, roughly 600 years ago. Mutianyu is much less crowded than Badaling, and more spectacular. In the afternoon, visit the Ming Tombs.</p><p><strong>Stay</strong>: Cours Et Pavillons</p><h2>Days 3-5: Beijing</h2><p>Spend three days exploring beijing with private tours. First, see the highlights of Imperial Beijing, visiting Tiananmen Square, the Forbidden City, and the Summer Palace. The next day, explore some of the less frequently visited parts of Beijing: begin the day with a visit to Yonghegong, also known as the Llama Temple, followed byPrince Gong's Mansion, Mei Lanfang's house, and Beihai Park. On your last day in Beijing, visit the Temple of Heaven, the official symbol of Beijing. Afterwards, head to the 798 Arts District, also known as Dashanzi, is a cluster of former military factories now housing hip creative spaces and outdoor cafes.</p><p><strong>Stay</strong>: Cours Et Pavillons</p><h2>Days 6-7: Pingyao</h2><p>Transfer via train to Shanxi Province</p><p><strong>Stay</strong>: Jing's Residence</p><h2>Days 8-9: Xinzhou</h2><p><strong>Stay</strong>: Wutai Mountain Marriott Hotel</p><h2>Day 10: Taiyuan</h2><p><strong>Stay</strong>: Kempinski Hotel Taiyuan</p><h2>Days 11-13: Xi'an</h2><p><strong>Stay</strong>: Sofitel Legend Peoples Grand Hotel Xian</p><h2>Day 14: Chengdu</h2><p><strong>Stay</strong>: Shangri-La Hotel Chengdu </p><h2>Day 15: Dujiangyan Panda Base</h2><p>Dujiangyan is the smaller of the Panda centers in Chengdu, but it is also much less crowded, with much more access to the Pandas. After lunch and perhaps some volunteer work preparing panda food, visit the Chengdu Shu Brocade and Embroidery Museum, the only place in China to show all the processes of the famous Shu brocade hand-weaving. Tonight, enjoy a performance of traditional Sichuan Tea House entertainment.</p><p>​​​​<strong>Stay</strong>: Shangri-La Hotel Chengdu </p><h2>Day 16: Dazu</h2><p>Spend the day on a full-day privately escorted tour. Dazu is one of the four most sacred Buddhist Grottoes in China; the carving at Dazu was not completed, as it was interrupted by the Mongol invasions, but is still spectacular.</p><p>​​​​<strong>Stay</strong>: Shangri-La Hotel Chengdu </p><h2>Day 17: Leshan</h2><p>Take a full-day excursion to Leshan, where there stands a Giant Buddha — the largest surviving Buddha in the world. It dates back to the Tang Dynasty, over 1300 years ago.</p><p><strong>Stay</strong>: Shangri-La Hotel Chengdu</p><h2>Days 18-20: Guizhou</h2><p>Fly from Chengdu to Guiyang, where you will check into the Sofitel Guiyang Hunter. The next day, spend a full-day excursion exploring Guizhou, visiting two rather spectacular sites: Huanguoshu Waterfall, the largest waterfall in China, and the Dragon Palace Cave, including a boat tour of the caves. Later, visit Yunfeng Village, one of the most well preserved ancient villages in South West China. The next morning, visit the Guiyang Museum of Ethnic Costumes. Afterwards, drive to the city of Kaili; spend the afternoon visiting the Miao Village of Langde. </p><p><strong>Stay</strong>: Sofitel Guiyang Hunter</p><h2>Day 21: Congjiang</h2><p>​​​​​​​Spend a full day touring Huanggang and Zhaoxing Dong villages, with lunch included. The next morning, visit Rongjiang County and the minority villages of Biji Miao and Dali Dong. </p><p><strong>Stay</strong>: Congjiang Ba Sha Hotel</p><h2>Day 22: Shanghai</h2><p>Fly into Shanghai. Check into Capella Shanghai Jian Ye Li and be transported to the glamorous Shanghai of the past. Centrally located within the cultural preservation zone of Xuhui District, the Jian Ye Li estate was originally built by French real estate company Foncière et Immobilière de Chine in the 1930s </p><p><strong>Stay</strong>: Capella Shanghai Jian Ye Li </p><h2>Day 23: Shanghai</h2><p>Take a full-day privately-escorted tour of Shanghai, including the Bund, the Old Temple Bazaar, and the Shanghai Museum. </p><p><strong>Stay</strong>: Shanghai Jianyeli Capella Hotel </p><h2>Day 24: Suzhou</h2><p>Full-day excursion to Suzhou, a much older city than Shanghai that was a center of trade on the Grand Canal; the wealthy merchants built intricately designed private gardens, which are now open for visiting. SYour tour will include the Humble Administrator's Garden, the Silk Embroidery Research Institute, the Suzhou Museum, and a boat ride on one of the city's many canals. </p><p><strong>Stay</strong>: Shanghai Jianyeli Capella Hotel </p><h2>Days 25-26: Shanghai</h2><p>Take an arts tour, visiting the M50 art district, the Museum of Contemporary Art, and the Shanghai Museum of Fabric and Costume Design. In the afternoon, we have arranged a tour of the architecture of the French Concession. The next day, spend a free day in Shanghai, taking advantage of its excellent shopping.</p><p><strong>Stay</strong>: Shanghai Jianyeli Capella Hotel </p><h2>Day 27: Hangzhou</h2><p>Transfer to the train station and take the high speed train for a full-day privately-escorted tour of Hangzhou, visiting West Lake, Lingying Temple, and the city's silk shopping street.</p><p><strong>Stay</strong>: Shanghai Jianyeli Capella Hotel </p><h2>Day 28: Depart from Shanghai</h2><p>Transfer to the airport for your flight home.</p>
Categories: Travel

Mary Ann Ramsey's 35-day Itinerary Around Australia, Indonesia, and Cambodia

Travel and Leisure - Sat, 08/04/2018 - 09:28
<p><a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/travel-agent/mary-ann-ramsey" target="_blank">Mary Ann Ramsey</a> is a member of <a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/a-list" target="_blank">Travel + Leisure’s A-List</a>, a collection of the top travel advisors in the world, and can help plan your perfect getaway. Below is an example of the type of itineraries she creates. To work with Mary Ann, you can contact her directly at maryann@bettymacleantravel.com.</p><h2>Day 1: Arrive in Sydney</h2><p>Upon arrival, take a sightseeing tour of Sydney, the capital of the state of New South Wales. Start at the world renowned Sydney Opera House, the busiest performing arts center in the world, before heading through Paddington and Bondi Junction to famous Bondi Beach. Enjoy a short portion of the Bondi Costal walk before lunch at the iconic Icebergs Dining room. Spend the afternoon at leisure.</p><p><strong>Stay</strong>: Four Seasons Hotel Sydney</p><h2>Days 2-9: Cruising the Gold Coast</h2><p>Board the <em>Seabourn Encore </em>for your first week of cruising, following the East Coast of Australia from Sydney to Cairns, in the tropical Far North of Queensland. Includes stops all along the Gold Coast, including the dynamic city of Brisbane. </p><p><strong>Stay</strong>: Seabourne Encore</p><h2>Day 10: Kuranda</h2><p>Meet your guide at the cruise pier and depart on your full day private tour of Kuranda. Board the Kuranda Scenic Railway, where you will get unsurpassed views of a World Heritage Listed rainforest, steep ravines, and picturesque waterfalls within the Barron Gorge National Park. Arriving in Kuranda, you explore the quaint village visiting the famous market, boutique stores, and local crafts. Afterward, take a Skyrail gondola trip above the canopy, with stops along the way to visit Red Peak. Then walk the boardwalks over the fern covered forest floor.</p><p><strong>Stay</strong>: Seabourne Encore</p><h2>Day 11: Cairns</h2><p>Meet your driver at the cruise pier for a private helicopter tour from Cairns. Your flight experience includes a scenic helicopter flight passing Green Island and unique Arlington Reef. Land in the heart of the Tropical Far North Queensland at Turtle Beach, and enjoy a sumptuous brunch on this beautiful beach and relax on the sand. Witness the incredible change as Green turns to Blue while you fly back to Cairns, with stunning views.</p><p><strong>Stay</strong>: Seabourne Encore</p><h2>Days 12-14: Cruising the North Coast </h2><p>Sail the Timor Sea along Australia's North Coast and the Northern Territory, before stopping in Darwin.</p><p><strong>Stay</strong>: Seabourne Encore</p><h2>Day 15: Kakadu </h2><p>Depart by private flight to experience the unspoilt beauty of Kakadu, taking in spectacular aerial perspectives and a truly special showcase of Aboriginal culture, rugged landscape, mighty rivers, and unique wildlife. Land at Cooinda, cruise the amazing Yellow Water Billabong, and visit the Warradjun Aboriginal Culture Centre.</p><p><strong>Stay</strong>: Seabourne Encore</p><h2>Days 16-19: Cruising the Timor Sea to Indonesia</h2><p>Enjoy three days at leisure on the ship on your way to Komodo Island.</p><p><strong>Stay</strong>: Seabourne Encore</p><h2>Day 20: Komodo</h2><p>Arrive at Loh Liang Seaport. Meet your guide at the pier and transfer by boat to Komodo National Park, where you will enjoy a walking tour of Komodo National Park. The safari starts by walking to Banunggulung to see the KOMODO Dragons. It is estimated that there are 2,000 lizards on Komodo, but it is also a good place to view birdlife, like cockatoos and gosong birds.</p><p><strong>Stay</strong>: Seabourne Encore</p><h2>Days 21-28: Cruising the Indonesian Islands</h2><p>Enjoy seven days at leisure on the ship, before arriving in Java. </p><p><strong>Stay</strong>: Seabourne Encore</p><h2>Day 29: Semarang</h2><p>Meet your guide at the pier and commence your tour of Semarang, on Java, including Borobudur Temple, the largest Buddhist Temple in Indonesia. This Temple was abandoned for centuries and lay hidden under layers of volcanic ash; it was rediscovered in the early 19th century by English military engineers. </p><p>​​​​​​​<strong>Stay</strong>: Seabourne Encore</p><h2>Days 30-31: Cruising to Singapore</h2><p>Enjoy your final days of the cruise at leisure on the ship.</p><p>​​​​​​​<strong>Stay</strong>: Seabourne Encore</p><h2>Day 32: Singapore and Siem Reap</h2><p>Disembark in Singapore and take a city tour before transferring to the airport for your flight to Siem Reap, Cambodia. After clearance formalities, you are met by your local guide and transferred by private vehicle to your hotel for check-in. Please enjoy the balance of the day at leisure.</p><p>​​​​​​​<strong>Stay</strong>: Belmond La Residence d'Angkor</p><h2>Day 33: Angkor Thom, Ta Prohm, and Angkor Wat</h2><p>Enjoy a full day of sightseeing in and around the site of one of Asia's most magnificent archeological ruins: the religious citadels of Angkor Thom, Ta Prohm, and Angkor Wat, which were part of one of the most powerful kingdoms to rise in Southeast Asia. This evening, enjoy a private sunset cruise in a beautiful boat, enjoying dramatic views near the south gate of Angkor Thom while sipping cocktails and canapés.</p><p>​​​​​​​<strong>Stay</strong>: Belmond La Residence d'Angkor</p><h2>Day 34: Koh Kher, Beng Mealea, and Banteay Chhmar</h2><p>Visit remote temples away from the tourist crowds with a private helicopter tour to the outlying areas of Angkor, where other travelers rarely venture. Visit Koh Kher, an earlier capital predating Angkor Wat, known for the seven-tiered pyramid Prasat Thom. Explore Beng Mealea, a temple still completely engulfed by the jungle, and Banteay Chhmar, another huge temple complex still overgrown by jungle but in spectacular condition, located near the Thai border. </p><p>​​​​​​​<strong>Stay</strong>: Belmond La Residence d'Angkor</p><h2>​​​​​​​Day 35: Depart from Siem Reap</h2><p>Transfer to the airport for your onward flight home.</p>
Categories: Travel

Brooke Garnett's 27-day Itinerary Around Argentina, Chile, and Uruguay

Travel and Leisure - Sat, 08/04/2018 - 09:20
<p><a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/travel-agent/brooke-garnett" target="_blank">Brooke Garnett</a> is a member of <a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/a-list" target="_blank">Travel + Leisure’s A-List</a>, a collection of the top travel advisors in the world, and can help plan your perfect getaway. Below is an example of the type of itineraries she creates. To work with Brooke, you can contact her directly at brooke@mayamayatravel.com.</p><h2>Day 1: Arrive in Buenos Aires</h2><p>Upon your arrival at Buenos Aires International Airport, you will be met by a local representative and assisted through immigration, customs and baggage collection. Once you have collected your baggage you will be privately transferred to The Park Hyatt, where you will check-in for a three-night stay. The remainder of the day is at your leisure to relax and settle in to your hotel. </p><p><strong>Stay</strong>: Palacio Duhau Park Hyatt </p><h2>Day 2: Buenos Aires</h2><p>This morning, you will be collected by your private English-speaking guide and taken on a half-day tour of Buenos Aires, focusing on the old city (San Telmo and La Boca) and the incredible street art (graffiti) in the city. This evening you will attend the Rojo Tango Show at the Faena Hotel. </p><p><strong>Stay</strong>: Palacio Duhau Park Hyatt </p><h2>Day 3: La Sofia</h2><p>Today you will have an excursion to La Sofia. You will be met in the morning at your hotel and transferred to meet the owners of La Sofia, a local <em>estancia </em>(estate). You will have time to take part in a short horseback ride and to enjoy the pool and explore the property. We can also organize a polo lesson if you are interested. Enjoy a typical Argentine BBQ lunch and then an afternoon tea in the gardens in the late afternoon, before returning to the hotel in the late afternoon.</p><p><strong>Stay</strong>: Palacio Duhau Park Hyatt</p><h2>Days 4-6: El Chaltén</h2><p>Transfer to the airport for your transfer. Upon arrival, you will be met by your driver and privately transferred to Lago del Desierto. On arrival at Lago del Desierto South Point, a boat from Aguas Arriba Lodge will meet you and take you along the East shore of the lake to get to the lodge. You can also leave your luggage on the boat and take a 3-hour hike through the forest to the lodge (which we highly suggest!) During your days at Aguas Arribas, you can choose from the many activities available at the lodge, ranging from bird watching and nature walks to incredible treks. You may also wish to go fly fishing in the pristine waters nearby, or kayaking along the river de Las Vueltas. </p><p><strong>Stay</strong>: Aguas Arriba Lodge</p><h2>Day 7: Laguna de Los Tres and El Calafate</h2><p>After breakfast, you will be taken back across the lake by boat to the entrance of Lago del Desierto. On arrival, you will be met by a local driver and vehicle and transferred to Hosteria El Pilar where you will meet with your private trekking guide. Together you set off on the trail for the hike to Laguna de Los Tres, a tough but rewarding journey and the most famous of all the hikes in El Chalten. After hiking, you are transferred past El Calafate to check into Eolo Lodge for a three-night stay. </p><p><strong>Stay</strong>: Eolo Lodge</p><h2>Day 8: Perito Moreno</h2><p>After breakfast, you will be picked up by your private driver and guide who will take you to Los Glaciares National Park. The drive takes you on a beautiful route around the edge of Lake Argentino. Here, you will board a boat (without your guide), which will take you on a short navigation close to the south wall of the glacier. After disembarking, you will meet the Los Glaciares guides who will lead you through a forest area to get to the Perito Moreno Glacier. Here you will put on crampons and enjoy a one-and-a-half-hour trek over the glacier surface. The tour is a unique experience where you will be guided through safe trails to appreciate all the features that this type of glacier has to offer. There is also a natural viewpoint facing the glacier and 2 miles of catwalks, which allow you to appreciate the glacier from different angles and heights. </p><p><strong>Stay</strong>: Eolo Lodge</p><h2>Day 9: Estancia Cristina</h2><p>After breakfast, you will transfer to another boat that will take you across Lake Argentino, sailing among icebergs and imposing landscapes with views over the west face of the Upsala Glacier. There will be plenty of time to take photos. When you arrive to Estancia Cristina port, you will be met by a private Estancia Cristina guide and taken in a private all-terrain vehicle towards the Continental Ice Field Refuge. Walk through beautiful glacial erosion landscapes, as far as the Upsala Glacier viewpoint, where you will be treated to fantastic views over the east face of this imposing glacier, Lake Guillermo, the Southern Patagonia Ice Field, and the Andes Mountains. </p><p><strong>Stay</strong>: Eolo Lodge</p><h2>Days 10-13: Torres del Paine</h2><p>Today you will be transferred to Cerro Castillo, on the border with Chile, where you will clear customs and immigration and meet your private guide and driver. Continue by road to Awasi Patagonia where you will check in for a four-night stay. A private guide and vehicle from Awasi Patagonia are available for you to plan activities and explore at your own pace. You will have time to explore Awasi’s private land ,as well as Torres del Paine National Park and other surrounding areas. For hiking enthusiasts, be sure not to miss the French Valley and the hike to the base of Las Torres. You will also be able to explore the private reserve of Baguales as well as Awasi’s private land.</p><p><strong>Stay</strong>: Awasi Ptagonia</p><h2>Days 14: Santiago</h2><p>Fly into Santiago. Upon arrival, you will be met and transferred to The Singular Santiago for a two-night stay.</p><p><strong>Stay</strong>: The Singular Santiago</p><h2>Day 15: Valparaíso and Casablanca Valley</h2><p>Meet your guide for a tour of Valparaíso and the Casablanca Wine Valley. In Valparaíso, your guide will take you on a cultural and historical tour, before continuing on to the Casablanca Wine Valley, famous for its cool, crisp white wines. Enjoy a wine paired lunch at a local restaurant, followed by a tour and tasting at one of the wineries in the area. </p><p><strong>Stay</strong>: The Singular Santiago</p><h2>Days 16-19: Atacama Desert</h2><p>Transfer to the airport for your flight to Calama. Upon arrival, transfer to Awasi Atacama for a four-night stay. Explore Atacama with your private guide and vehicle. You can plan half or full day hikes, guided walking tours, and excursions according to your particular interests. Be sure not to miss the salt flats and the hot springs of Puritama.</p><p><strong>Stay</strong>: Awasi Atacama</p><h2>Days 20-21: Wine Region</h2><p>Do some early morning touring before transfering to the airport for your flight to Santiago and transfer to Viña Vik. Spend your time here enjoying the activities offered at the property; spend the day touring the winery and vineyards, enjoying a wine tasting and outdoor picnic, horseback riding, mountain biking, or hiking through the beautiful terrain.</p><p><strong>Stay</strong>: Viña Vik</p><h2>Day 22: José Ignacio</h2><p>Spend the morning relaxing before flying to Montevideo, Uruguay, where you will be met and transferred to Estancia Vik in José Ignacio. Enjoy the remainder of the day settling in and then a wonderful dinner.</p><p><strong>Stay</strong>: Estancia Vik</p><h2>Day 23: Punta del Este Bay</h2><p>Cruise along the Punta del Este Bay, known as “Las Delicias,” where pirate ships used to stop to rest or hide from other pirates. If climate allows, you can reach the “Sea Lions Island," a natural reserve located which constitutes one of the largest populations of sea lions in South America. The tour includes paddle boards to go to Gorritti Island; after a stop for a picnic and swim, you will head back to the port and then to Estancia Vik for the remainder of the day at leisure.</p><p><strong>Stay</strong>: Estancia Vik</p><h2>Day 24: Garzon</h2><p>This morning, you will be transferred to Garzon, a quaint town off the beaten path now renowned for its exceptional restaurants. Enjoy visits to the olive groves and wineries, before stopping for lunch at one of the best restaurants in town. </p><p><strong>Stay</strong>: Estancia Vik</p><h2>Day 25: José Ignacio</h2><p>Enjoy a morning horseback riding tour along the Atlantic coast; you will see a great variety of birds, armadillos, capybaras, foxes, and deer. You will ride cross country along private trails which belong to the estancias located nearby, sand dunes along the coast of the ocean, or along the local lagoon. In the afternoon, take a local art tour in the areas of Punta Ballena and La Barra, and then the Atchugarry Foundation.</p><p><strong>Stay</strong>: Estancia Vik</p><h2>Day 26: José Ignacio</h2><p>Today, join a local chef for a private culinary experience, where you will learn about local Uruguayan products like butia, dulce de leche, olive oil, Uruguayan steak, and other typical ingredients. Cook yourself lunch before spending the remainder of the day is at leisure — you may wish to head to the beach!</p><p><strong>Stay</strong>: Estancia Vik</p><h2>Day 27: Depart from Montevideo</h2><p>Transfer to Montevideo for your onward flight home. </p>
Categories: Travel

Amalia Lazarov's 12-day United Arab Emirates Itinerary

Travel and Leisure - Sat, 08/04/2018 - 09:17
<p><a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/travel-agent/amalia-lazarov" target="_blank">Amalia Lazarov</a> is a member of <a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/a-list" target="_blank">Travel + Leisure’s A-List</a>, a collection of the top travel advisors in the world, and can help plan your perfect getaway. Below is an example of the type of itineraries she creates. To work with Amalia, you can contact her directly at amalia@247travel365.com.</p><h2>Day 1: Arrive in Abu Dhabi</h2><p>Arrive at the Abu Dhabi airport, where a <em>Marhaba </em>("welcome") greeter will escort you through immigration to your chauffer. With a stay at Emirates Palace Abu Dhabi in Abu Dhabi (Abu Dhabi Corniche), you'll be convenient to Open<br />Beach and Marina Mall. This 5-star hotel is within close proximity of Al Khubeirah Garden and Abu Dhabi<br />International Marine Sports Club. </p><p><strong>Stay</strong>: Emirates Palace</p><h2>Day 2: Abu Dhabi</h2><p>Take a driving tour of Abu Dhabi, the United Arab Emirates and the residence of the Federal National Council. Recognized as one of the world’s largest producers of oil, Abu Dhabi is undergoing a massive diversification of its economy and is investing in many different areas such as commerce, tourism and culture. Visit the Grand Mosque, Union Square, the Corniche, and the Heritage Village. Before heading to dinner, we will pass through Saadiyat Island to visit the new Louvre.</p><p><strong>Stay</strong>: Emirates Palace</p><h2>Day 3: Abu Dhabi</h2><p>Transfer to Ferrari World, the world's first Ferrari theme park. After a day of high-speed fun, dine at Li Beirut — Lebanese cuisine at its best!</p><p><strong>Stay</strong>: Emirates Palace</p><h2>Day 4: Empty Quarter</h2><p>Transfer to the Rub' al Khali desert, or "Empty Quarter," in the western part of Abu Dhabi Emirate. In Mahdar Bin Usayyan, you will check into the Anantara resort ar Qasr al Sarab. In the late afternoon, take a sunset camel trek — climbing aboard the "ship of the desert" to explore the valleys around the hotel, with a stop for traditional Arabian refreshments. Dine on top of a sand dune with Middle Eastern specialties like local hummus and fresh pita.</p><p><strong>Stay</strong>: Qasr al Sarab</p><h2>Day 6: Empty Quarter</h2><p>Rise early for a desert bike experience, exploring the awe-inspiring beauty of the desert aboard a fat bike — the only type of bicycle that can be ridden on sand dunes. Afterward, relax at the pool before heading back to the desert in the afternoon to learn the traditional sport of falconry, and the method of hunting with Saluki dogs, practiced in the region four thousands of years.</p><p><strong>Stay</strong>: Qasr al Sarab</p><h2>Day 7: Dubai</h2><p>Transfer via private car to Dubai, where you will check into the new Jumeirah Al Naseem. The property's extensive lush gardens edge the sandy beach, providing pockets of privacy and peacefulness. You can visit the turtle lagoon, part of Jumeirah's turtle Rehabilitation Project, or venture to nearby Wild Wadi Waterpark. In the evening, head to Al Habtoor City to see a show.</p><p><strong>Stay</strong>: Jumeirah Al Naseem</p><h2>Day 8: Dubai</h2><p>Head to Dubai Creek, where you will catch a seaplane for an aerial tour above Dubai's ever-changing coastline. Then, cross the peninsula to the emirate of Fujairah and the Indian Ocean, where you will land and cross into Dibba, an exclave of Oman. There, you will board a traditional wooden dhow four a cruise around the fjords of Musandam, where dolphin sightings are common — and even the occasional whale shark or orca. Transfer back to Dubai for dinner at one of Dubai's best Turkish restaurants. </p><p><strong>Stay</strong>: Jumeirah Al Naseem</p><h2>Day 9: Dubai</h2><p>Visit the famous Al Fahidi Fort, also known as the Dubai National Museum.This is the place where once rulers of Dubai lived. Afterward, we will have a lovely ride aboard an <em>abra</em>, or traditional ferry, to Dubai's famous old markets in the spice and gold souq. Next, we will drive to the palace of Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum — Dubai's ruler, and Vice President and Prime Minister of the United Arab Emirates – and then to Jumeirah Mosque, the Islamic Art Museum, and finally, the 148th floor of the Burj Khalifa. In the evening, cruise on the Arabian Gulf around Palm Island, one of the largest man-made islands in the world.</p><p><strong>Stay</strong>: Jumeirah Al Naseem</p><h2>Day 10: Dubai</h2><p>Take a morning hot air balloon flight over the desert of the UAE. View the giant dunes, the moon-like landscape of the rugged Hajj Mountains in the East, and the majestic skyline of Dubai in the west. After landing, we will see a falcon show before taking a dune buggy tour of the desert's extraordinary terrain. Later, tour the Burj Al Arab waterfront area by jetski.</p><p><strong>Stay</strong>: Jumeirah Al Naseem</p><h2>Day 11: Ras al-Khaimah and Dubai</h2><p>Ras-al Khaimah is an oft-overlooked emirate of teh UAE, but it is one of the most spectacular, known for its Arabian Gulf Beaches. Take a spin on the world's largest zipline, starting at the highest point of the UAE in the Jebel Jais mountains. Later, transfer back to Dubai for a guided tour of Dubai's best markets with a personal shopper and souq expert — you'll find textiles, gold, and spices, as well as Indian fashions and Afghani carpets. </p><p><strong>Stay</strong>: Jumeirah Al Naseem</p><h2>Day 12: Depart from Dubai</h2><p>Check out and transfer to Dubai Airport for your flight home.</p>
Categories: Travel

Jonathan Epstein's 14-day Ireland Itinerary

Travel and Leisure - Sat, 08/04/2018 - 09:11
<p><a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/travel-agent/jonathan-epstein" target="_blank">Jonathan Epstein</a> is a member of <a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/a-list" target="_blank">Travel + Leisure’s A-List</a>, a collection of the top travel advisors in the world, and can help plan your perfect getaway. Below is an example of the type of itineraries he creates. To work with Jonathan, you can contact him directly at jonathan@celebratedexperiences.com.</p><h2>Day 1: Arrive in Dublin</h2><p>Today you will arrive into Dublin Airport on, where you will catch a taxi to The Westbury in Dublin. After dropping off your bags and freshening up, you can explore Dublin independently. We suggest a walk through the heart of Georgian Dublin and the 22-acre park of St. Stephen's Green. You will certainly enjoy Powerscourt Townhouse, which is located just beside The Westbury. In the evening, enjoy a meal in one of Dublin's authentic pubs or casual restaurants.</p><p><strong>Stay</strong>: The Westbury</p><h2>Day 2: Dublin</h2><p>This morning, explore more of the city independently, visiting sites such as Sheridans Cheesemongers — to enjoy a taste of authentic Irish farmhouse cheeses — and the Chester Beatty Library, which is home to what many consider the finest private collection of manuscripts. This afternoon, you will be met by your expert walking guide for a half day overview tour of Dublin, taking in all the highlights along the historic "Golden Kilometre." In the evning, visit St. Patrick’s Cathedral, the largest church in Ireland, for their daily choral evensong. Dinner reservations at Wilde.</p><p><strong>Stay</strong>: The Westbury</p><h2>Day 3: Dublin</h2><p>You will be met by your driver and separate guide to explore more of Dublin. Begin your day touring Kilmainham Jail to learn about its important role in the Irish Revolution and some of its famous past occupants. Then, visit the National Gallery of Ireland, followed by Trinity College to see the famous Book of Kells and the Long Room. Enjoy dinner in one of Ireland's finest restaurants, Chapter One. </p><p><strong>Stay</strong>: The Westbury</p><h2>Day 4: Connemara</h2><p>Youu will be met by your driver guide in the morning for a transfer to Ashford Castle, in the Connemara region. One of the world's finest hotels, we have worked closely with our friends at the castle on all elements of your stay. En route, you can visit Clonmacnoise, on the River Shannon, which is one of Ireland’s holiest sites with a history that spans centuries. This afternoon, relax at the hotel and enjoy a walk through the Walled Garden and their beautiful grounds.</p><p><strong>Stay</strong>: Ashford Castle</p><h2>Day 5: Connemara</h2><p>Relax at the hotel and also enjoy some of the activities on the estate. We have worked with our friends on property to build a robust schedule, including a boat trip on Lough Corrib, horseback riding, and the property's famous "Hawk Walk." Dinner is booked at their sister hotel, The Lodge at Ashford.</p><p><strong>Stay</strong>: Ashford Castle</p><h2>Day 6: Connemara</h2><p>Enjoy more activities at Ashford Castle: in the morning, we have booked a fishing experience with a wonderful ghillie, and in the afternoon, you will enjoy clay target shooting. You can also take a walk into the nearby village of Cong. Dinner is booked at George V, their fine dining restaurant.</p><p><strong>Stay</strong>: Ashford Castle</p><h2>Day 7: County Clare</h2><p>In the morning, transfer with a private driver to Gregans Castle in County Clare. On the way, you can explore the boglands, lakes, and mountains that make up the Connemara National Park. Visit the market town of Clifden before stopping for lunch in the vibrant city of Galway, where you can walk around the many shops and restaurants of the Latin Quarter and explore Eyre Square. At Gregans Castle, we have booked a room with an incredible view over The Burren. Dinner tonight is booked in the local village of Ballyvaughan.</p><p><strong>Stay</strong>: Gregans Castle</p><h2>Day 8: County Clare and the Burren</h2><p>Meet your driver in the morning for a visit to the Cliffs of Moher, some of the world's highest sea cliffs with stunning views of the Atlantic Coast. Then, head to Burren National Park to meet up with your walking guide and enjoy a walk through the park's vast limestone plateaus and diverse botanical wildlife. If time permits, you can also visit the Burren Perfumery, famous for using local wildflowers and herbs in their soaps and other products.</p><p><strong>Stay</strong>: Gregans Castle</p><h2>Day 9: County Kerry</h2><p>Meet your driver in the morning for your transfer to Killarney Park Hotel in County Kerry. En route, stop in the charming village of Adare, best known for its quaint thatched-roof cottages. Upon arrival in Killarney, you can visit some of the nearby sites along the Ring of Kerry — Ross Castle, Muckross House &amp; Gardens, Torc Waterfall, and the panoramic viewpoint of Ladies View.</p><p><strong>Stay</strong>: Killarney Park Hotel</p><h2>Day 10: County Kerry and the Dingle Peninsula</h2><p>With your drive, explore the Dingle Peninsula, a narrow 40-mile stretch of land famed for its rugged and remote beauty. Here you can stop in some of the many shops of the local craftsmen, such as Louis Mulcahy’s pottery and Murphy’s Ice Cream; we have also booked a special experience with one of our friends, a local crystal maker. Later, drive along the beautiful Slea Head Drive, where you can see some of the many ancient Fahan "beehive" huts, inhabited until the 13th century. </p><p><strong>Stay</strong>: Killarney Park Hotel</p><h2>Day 11: County Kerry</h2><p>Spend the day independently, perhaps hiking in the National Park or exploring the shops and pubs of Killarney. In the evening, we have organized a comparative whiskey tasting of a number of Irish and Scottish Whiskeys.</p><p><strong>Stay</strong>: Killarney Park Hotel</p><h2>Day 12: County Laois and Ballyfin</h2><p>Meet your driver and travel to Ballyfin, visiting the Rock of Cashel, one of Ireland’s most important historical sites, along the way. This is where Saint Patrick reputedly converted the King of Munster. Upon arrival, you can relax at the hotel and explore the beautiful grounds, before joining their guided tour of Ballyfin and the property's kitchens. In the evening, enjoy pre-dinner drinks with Ballyfin's resident pianist and dinner at the Cellar Bar.</p><p>Stay:</p><p><strong>Stay</strong>: Ballyfin</p><h2>Day 13: County Kilkenny </h2><p>Take a full day private tour of the medieval city of Kilkenny, with highlights including Kilkenny Castle, home of the fabulous Butler Art Collection, and the Kilkenny Design Centre, where you will find locally made jewelry and pottery. Kilkenny also has a thriving arts and crafts scene and a couple of our favorite local artisans include Chesneau Leather and Jerpoint Glass, where you can enjoy a glassblowing demonstration. </p><p><strong>Stay</strong>: Ballyfin</p><h2>Day 14: Depart from Dublin</h2><p>Transfer to the airport for your onward flight home.</p>
Categories: Travel

Marianne Abraham's 15-day British Columbia Itinerary

Travel and Leisure - Sat, 08/04/2018 - 09:00
<p><a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/travel-agent/marianne-abraham" target="_blank">Marianne Abraham</a> is a member of <a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/a-list" target="_blank">Travel + Leisure’s A-List</a>, a collection of the top travel advisors in the world, and can help plan your perfect getaway. Below is an example of the type of itineraries she creates. To work with Marianne, you can contact her directly at Marianne.Abraham@Butterfield.com.</p><h2>Day 1: Arrive in Vancouver</h2><p>An arranged limo service will transfer you to your hotel, with plenty of time to explore Vancouver's renowned Seawalk and Stanley Park. The hotel is just blocks from English Bay, where you can hop on one of the city's well loved mini water taxi tug boats that take you across the harbor to Granville Island and its famous market.</p><p><strong>Stay</strong>: Opus Hotel</p><h2>Days 2-5: Mackenzie Sound</h2><p>Spend the morning visiting the UBC Museum of Anthropology, considered among the finest in North America; we can arrange a one hour guided tour. You will be immersed in First Nations culture at many of your destinations on this trip, so a primer on BC First Nations Coastal culture is worthwhile. Transfer to the airport for a short flight to Port Hardy, where a seaplane will whisk you across the many inlets off Vancouver Island to the Nimmo Bay Resort. Here, full immersion into the wilderness of British Columbia’s coast will include kayaking, paddleboarding, and boating in the calm waters of the inlet. Explore tidal life or watch for whales — both humpbacks and orcas reside in nearby Broughton Archipelago — and head on a bear-watching expedition and hike in the old growth forests. </p><p><strong>Stay</strong>: Nimmo Bay Resort</p><h2>Day 6: Bella Coola</h2><p>Transfer by helicopter to the Tweedsmuir Park Lodge, where grizzly bears hang out on the front lawn! Arrive in time for an afternoon boat drift down the river; whether you see your first mountain grizzly on the front lawn, from a river drift boat, or from the platforms that have been built up and away from the river banks, it will be a memorable experience. In addition to bear watching, guided hiking tours of the area and First Nations cultural walks to ancient petroglyph stone carvings are available. So is soaking in the hot tub or sauna, enjoying the fine dining in the log chalet dining room, or relaxing on the front porch of your luxurious timber frame chalet.</p><p><strong>Stay</strong>: Tweedsmuir Park Lodge</p><h2>Days 7-9: Great Bear Rainforest</h2><p>Depart via private sea plane from Bella Coola to Klemtu, in the heart of the Great Bear Rainforest. Lodge staff will meet you and take you to the property, where you can immerse yourself in the rich cultural and natural history of this area. The Great Bear Rainforest is the largest intact temperate rainforest in the world. You will spend your days, together with only a few other guests and your very experienced guides, traveling by motor boat to explore it. Orcas, eagles, grizzly bears, black bears, and, of course, the rare Spirit Bear all come down to the rivers to feed on the abundance of salmon. </p><p>Should you need a break from all that wildlife, the rich and lengthy Kitasoo/Xai’Xais First Nations cultural history is incredible. The First Nations village of Klemtu boaststhe grandest Big House on the Central Coast, and you will spend time with First Nations hosts and guides — immersing yourself in the stories, way of life, and art of this rich area. </p><p><strong>Stay</strong>: Spirit Bear Lodge </p><h2>Day 10: Denny Island </h2><p>Transfer to Bella Bella, where you will be transferred by water taxi to Shearwater Resort and Marina. This afternoon you may have a chance to visit the Pacific Wild field lab and meet with one of their staff, who will take you on a tour of their facilities on Denny Island. Return to Shearwater and enjoy some fish and chips with the locals on the oceanside patio.</p><p><strong>Stay</strong>: Shearwater Resort and Marina</p><h2>Days 11-14: Tofino</h2><p>Spend the morning exploring Denny Island, or water taxi to Bella Bella for a bit of First Nations arts and crafts shopping. In the afternoon, transfer by private seaplane to Clayoquot Sound, where you will settle in to your accommodations: a luxurious pioneer canvas tent suite, situated along the riverfront and nestled into the lush rainforest. Daily wilderness activities are highly personalized, like surfing lessons on a secluded beach, a day-long hike on Flores Island with a First Nations guide, or kayaking on mountain rivers or ocean coves.</p><p><strong>Stay</strong>: Clayoquot Wilderness Resort </p><h2>Day 15: Depart from Vancouver</h2><p>Spend most of the day exploring around Clayoquot Sound before transferring to Vancouver for your flight home.</p>
Categories: Travel

If You Wannabe the Ultimate Spice Girls Fan, You Gotta Go to This London Exhibition

Travel and Leisure - Sat, 08/04/2018 - 06:15
<p>Nostalgic ’90s kids, it’s time to spice up your life again.</p><p>A new exhibition in <a href="https://travelandleisure.com/travel-guide/london" target="_blank">London</a> is the ultimate tribute to female friendship, ’90s pop, big shoes and, of course, girl power (<em>zig-a-zig-ahhhh</em>).</p><p>“<a href="https://www.spicegirls-exhibition.com/" target="_blank">SpiceUp: An Exhibition About The Spice Girls</a>” is making its debut in the capital city before going on tour, starting in Manchester in late August, <a href="https://www.lonelyplanet.com/news/2018/08/02/spice-girls-exhibition-tour/" target="_blank"><em>Lonely Planet</em> reported</a>.</p><img alt="Spice Up! Spice Girls Exhibition in London "src="https://cdn-image.travelandleisure.com/sites/default/files/styles/1600x1000/public/1533309484/spice-girls-exhibiton-london-SPICEUP0818.jpg?itok=iayVgnhl"><p>The original idea for the exhibition began in 2016, when collector Alan Smith-Allison organized an independent exhibition in Cyprus, <a href="https://www.rollingstone.com/music/music-news/spice-up-inside-londons-massive-new-spice-girls-exhibit-703834/" target="_blank">according to <em>Rolling Stone</em></a>. Smith-Allison provides most of the pieces for the exhibition from his personal collection, and five other collectors also contributed.</p><p>“It looked so colorful and amazing out on display, so we then decided we needed to take it to a bigger scale and go on tour with it,” Smith-Allison told <em>Rolling Stone</em>. The exhibition features 300 iconic costumes and 7,000 pieces of merchandise and memorabilia from the all-girl pop group that shot to superstardom in 1996 with the quintessential party song, “Wannabe.” Don’t even try to pretend you didn’t bop to this song in middle school.</p><img alt="Spice Up! Spice Girls Exhibition in London "src="https://cdn-image.travelandleisure.com/sites/default/files/styles/1600x1000/public/1533309484/spice-girls-exhibiton-london-memorbilia-SPICEUP0818.jpg?itok=Y9n1rl_1"><img alt="Spice Up! Spice Girls Exhibition in London "src="https://cdn-image.travelandleisure.com/sites/default/files/styles/1600x1000/public/1533309484/spice-girls-exhibiton-london-shoes-SPICEUP0818.jpg?itok=LyWYiShP"><p>There will also be events and activities for Spice Fans to totally immerse themselves into the world of Ginger, Scary, Sporty, Baby and Posh, including special concerts, vip events, historic bus tour and after parties. Fans will also be able to access the famous Spice Bus from the Spice Girls’ movie, <i>Spice World</i>, for the first time ever in London and Manchester.</p><img alt="Spice Up! Spice Girls Exhibition in London "src="https://cdn-image.travelandleisure.com/sites/default/files/styles/1600x1000/public/1533309181/spice-girls-exhibiton-london-fashion-SPICEUP0818.jpg?itok=AGNa2BxB"><p>According to the exhibition <a href="https://www.spicegirls-exhibition.com/spice-bus" target="_blank">website</a>, the bus has suffered some neglect over the years, so a <a href="https://www.crowdfunder.co.uk/refurbthebus-the-final-push" target="_blank">restoration project</a> backed by many supporters was launched to bring it back to its fabulous, ’90s condition.</p><img alt="Spice Up! Spice Girls Exhibition in London "src="https://cdn-image.travelandleisure.com/sites/default/files/styles/1600x1000/public/1533309181/spice-girls-exhibiton-london-entry-SPICEUP0818.jpg?itok=WPH7gWkp"><img alt="Spice Up! Spice Girls Exhibition in London "src="https://cdn-image.travelandleisure.com/sites/default/files/styles/1600x1000/public/1533309181/spice-girls-exhibiton-london-room-SPICEUP0818.jpg?itok=pIBDvb1m"><p>The London exhibition will be open from July 28 to August 20 at the Business Design Centre in Islington. It will move to Manchester’s Manchester Central between August 24 to September 4. The exhibition plans to visit 12 cities around the UK in the next 18 months before touring worldwide, <em>Rolling Stone</em> reported.</p>
Categories: Travel

There’s Going to Be an Airbnb Inside the Great Wall of China

Travel and Leisure - Fri, 08/03/2018 - 17:01
<p><a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/travel-tips/the-great-wall-of-china" target="_blank">The Great Wall of China</a> receives an average of more than 27,000 visitors every single day. This fall, eight lucky people will win a night at the Great Wall with 13,000 miles of history all to themselves.</p><p>In an effort to raise awareness for <a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/travel-news/drones-helping-to-restore-great-wall-of-china" target="_blank">heritage site protection</a> and cultural exchange, <a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/hotels-resorts/vacation-rentals/london-man-made-15-million-from-airbnb" target="_blank">Airbnb</a> is partnering with the Beijing Tourism Development Committee to host the first-ever overnight stays at the modern world wonder.</p><img alt="Airbnb Wonder Experience in The Great Wall of China "src="https://cdn-image.travelandleisure.com/sites/default/files/styles/1600x1000/public/1533163334/airbnb-great-wall-china-stay-BNBWNDR0818.jpg?itok=CnQhCiXb"><p>Four people and their guests will get the Great Wall of China all to themselves for one night each from Sept. 4-7. </p><p>To win the unique Airbnb experience, contestants must write in 550 characters or less why they consider it important to break down barriers between cultures and how they would use their time at the Great Wall to build new connections. Winners will be chosen based on how well they answered the question, originality, and creativity.</p><img alt="Airbnb Wonder Experience in The Great Wall of China "src="https://cdn-image.travelandleisure.com/sites/default/files/styles/1600x1000/public/1533163334/airbnb-great-wall-china-window-BNBWNDR0818.jpg?itok=1-tRNhYj"><p>In addition to the unique accommodation inside the ancient portion of the wall (and bragging rights forever), each stay includes a sunset dinner along the wall, a classical music concert, and a calligraphy lesson. Winners will also take a hike through China’s countryside and learn about the history of the Great Wall from the site’s official historian.</p><img alt="Airbnb Wonder Experience in The Great Wall of China "src="https://cdn-image.travelandleisure.com/sites/default/files/styles/1600x1000/public/1533163334/airbnb-great-wall-china-dining-BNBWNDR0818.jpg?itok=NEhAI5RF"><p>Winners will be flown from anywhere around the globe to enjoy their night at the Great Wall.</p><p>The contest is open until midnight Aug. 11. Contestants can <a href="https://www.airbnb.com/night-at/thegreatwall" target="_blank">enter online</a>.</p>
Categories: Travel

Here's What to Expect on a Royal Caribbean Cruise to Private Island CocoCay (Video)

Travel and Leisure - Fri, 08/03/2018 - 16:41
<p>Starting next year, Royal Caribbean will be offering cruise goers the “<a href="https://www.royalcaribbean.com/cruise-destinations/cococay-bahamas" target="_blank">perfect day</a>” at the line's own private island, <a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/travel-news/royal-caribbean-cruises-to-private-island-bahamas" target="_blank">CocoCay</a>, in the Bahamas. Here's what to expect if you're interested in booking.</p><p>Cruise itineraries featuring CocoCay will begin in May 2019 — right now there is plenty of availability for December 2019 and later. Cruise prices start at <a href="https://www.royalcaribbean.com/cruise-destinations/cococay-bahamas" target="_blank">$256 per person</a> for a three-night excursion, up to a nine-night cruise starting at <a href="https://www.royalcaribbean.com/cruise-destinations/cococay-bahamas" target="_blank">$718 per person</a> (for an interior room, with higher rates for ocean view and balcony rooms).</p><img alt="Royal Caribbean Island, Coco Cay "src="https://cdn-image.travelandleisure.com/sites/default/files/styles/1600x1000/public/1529937920/Royal-Caribbean-CocoCay-Island-Park-COCOCAYRC0618.jpg?itok=OMAt3vlX"><p>On CocoCay, the cruise line is building an elaborate water park that will be exclusive to Royal Caribbean guests. It will have 13 water slides (including one called “Daredevil's Peak” that will be 135 feet tall), freshwater pools, swim-up bars, lounges, zip lines, helium balloon rides, and more beach activities.</p><p>Admission to the water park will cost from $44 to $99 per person for the full day and $39 to $74 for a half day (kids under three are free), <a href="https://www.travelweekly.com/Cruise-Travel/Royal-Caribbean-unveils-what-a-day-at-the-new-CocoCay-will-cost" target="_blank"><em>Travel Weekly</em> reported</a>. Attractions like zip lines and helium balloon rides are extra, but there will be combo pricing available. The Coco Beach Club, with an oceanfront infinity pool and waterfront dining, will cost from $54 to $99 for adults and $34 to $69 for kids.</p><img alt="Royal Caribbean Island, Coco Cay "src="https://cdn-image.travelandleisure.com/sites/default/files/styles/1600x1000/public/1529937920/Royal-Caribbean-CocoCay-Overwater-Bungalow-COCOCAYRC0618.jpg?itok=hYHQCvrX"><p>There are also overwater cabana rentals on the island — the first in the Bahamas, according to the cruise line — which look like a Caribbean dream. Depending on the season, the cabanas are $299 to $569, access to the beach club and water park not included.</p>
Categories: Travel

This New Hotel in Rome Is the Closest You'll Get to Sleeping Inside the Pantheon

Travel and Leisure - Fri, 08/03/2018 - 16:00
<p>After the <a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/travel-tips/colosseum-secrets" target="_blank">Colosseum</a> and the <a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/attractions/landmarks-monuments/trevi-fountain-unique-facts-history" target="_blank">Trevi Fountain</a>, the <a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/travel-guide/rome/things-to-do/pantheon" target="_blank">Pantheon</a> is on everyone's <a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/travel-guide/rome" target="_blank">Rome to-see list</a>. It's one of those places that strikes you with significance the moment you walk in, no matter which version of god you worship (or even if you don’t believe at all). The ancient temple-turned-church is often touted as the best preserved monument of the Roman Empire; even Michelangelo is said to have been in awe, calling it the <a href="https://www.usatoday.com/story/travel/destinations/2017/04/26/rome-pantheon/100889864/" target="_blank">work of angels</a>.</p><p>Upon entering, imposing, dark marble surrounds you, a single beam of sunlight shining down from the oculus in the center of its dome like a greeting straight from heaven.</p><img alt="Pantheon ceiling Rome "src="https://cdn-image.travelandleisure.com/sites/default/files/styles/1600x1000/public/1533064046/pantheon-ceiling-rome.jpg?itok=2FM8Waa0"><p>But if you prefer to soak in your divine moment without the crowds of Piazza della Rotonda, there's now a serene hideout overlooking the wondrous dome, just around the corner on Via di S. Chiara, atop the city's newest five-star hotel.</p><img alt="Pantheon Iconic Rome Hotel rooftop "src="https://cdn-image.travelandleisure.com/sites/default/files/styles/1600x1000/public/1533062638/Divinity%20Terrace%20corner%20Pantheon%20HD.jpg?itok=yzuKF-PA"><p>Step inside the dazzling marble lobby of the <a href="https://www.marriott.com/hotels/travel/rompa-the-pantheon-iconic-rome-hotel-autograph-collection/" target="_blank">Pantheon Iconic Rome Hotel</a> and your mind will take you right back to the ancient monument well before you ever make it upstairs for the view.</p><img alt="Pantheon Iconic Rome Hotel, Autograph Collection lobby "src="https://cdn-image.travelandleisure.com/sites/default/files/styles/1600x1000/public/1533063122/Pantheon-hotel-Rome-lobby.jpg?itok=mX5Psh82"><img alt="Pantheon Iconic Rome Hotel, Autograph Collection gallery "src="https://cdn-image.travelandleisure.com/sites/default/files/styles/1600x1000/public/1533063122/pantheon-hotel-rome-gallery.jpg?itok=bcibniq_"><p>“We are the new Pantheon; we celebrate the new gods,” Francesca Gori, the Autograph Collection hotel's director of sales and marketing, says. The lobby and 79 guest rooms and suites are decked in a shiny and modern iteration of the Pantheon's marble interior, with familiar arches and even circular lighting reminiscent of its most recognized feature.</p><img alt="Pantheon Hotel Rome Rooftop Restaurant "src="https://cdn-image.travelandleisure.com/sites/default/files/styles/1600x1000/public/1533062638/Divinity%20Terrace%20Lounge%20Bar.jpg?itok=d3xE2Nee"><p>The <a href="https://www.marriott.com/hotels/hotel-rooms/rompa-the-pantheon-iconic-rome-hotel-autograph-collection/" target="_blank">Pantheon Suite</a> offers a view of the monument directly from its king-sized bed.</p><img alt="Pantheon hotel suite Rome "src="https://cdn-image.travelandleisure.com/sites/default/files/styles/1600x1000/public/1533063532/Suite%20Pantheon%20DA%20USARE%20%281%29.jpg?itok=st2Gs9rw"><p>Guests in the Dioniso Suite can observe the city's other historic rooftops from their terrace.</p><img alt="Pantheon Iconic Rome Hotel Suite "src="https://cdn-image.travelandleisure.com/sites/default/files/styles/1600x1000/public/1533062638/Dioniso%20Terrace%20Suite.jpg?itok=dpvJFruV"><p>An aperitivo series at the Divinity Terrace Lounge Bar, called Iconic Sunset, is happening every Thursday now through mid-October. More than a party, this is a sunset “ritual” of sorts, with spiced wine like the Ancient Romans drank being served out of original caraffes just as the sun dips over the dome of the rooftop's godly neighbor.</p><p>A special opening rate on classic rooms starting at $489 per night and an opening package that includes 20 percent off stays of two nights or more, free breakfast, and room upgrades based on availability are being offered through September 30. Book by calling the hotel directly (+39 06 8115 6300) or <a href="https://www.marriott.com/hotels/travel/rompa-the-pantheon-iconic-rome-hotel-autograph-collection/" target="_blank">online</a>.</p>
Categories: Travel

Kayakers Discover 'Underground Infinity Pool' in Remote Ireland Cave (Video)

Travel and Leisure - Fri, 08/03/2018 - 12:02
<p>Earth is home to some incredible natural sights, especially if you happen to be in the right place at the right time.</p><p>This was the case for kayaker, rock climber, and guidebook author Iain Miller, who recently filmed footage of a stunning natural phenomenon that occurs in the caves hidden beneath Owey Island off the western coast of <a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/travel-news/best-airport-runway" target="_blank">Donegal</a> in <a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/travel-news/game-of-thrones-gosford-castle-sale" target="_blank">Ireland</a>.</p><p>The video showcases what Miller refers to <a href="https://uniqueascent.ie/sp/article_manager/detail/the_cave_of_light" target="_blank">on his website</a> as the “Blue Lagoon effect,” when the sun happens to directly hit the cave’s mouth at the right position and angle, causing the cave’s waters to take on a bright blue glow while its walls light up in shades of red, purple, orange, and pink.</p><p>“Any object in the water looks like it is suspended in air; an underground infinity pool is the resulting effect,” Miller wrote. “The whole effect looks like an explosion of light and is a surreal natural phenomenon to witness firsthand”.</p><p>To catch the phenomenon on video, Miller and his colleagues paddled out at around 5 a.m. to what Miller says is the largest of the sea caves on Owey, waiting for about an hour until the sun arrived and illuminated the cave. The phenomenon lasted for around 40 minutes until clouds rolled in, casting the cave back into its typical dark state.</p><p><strong>Related: </strong><a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/trip-ideas/adventure-travel/cave-adventures-around-the-world" target="_blank">Extraordinary Caves You Can Snorkel, Dive, and Hike in Around the World</a> </p><p>Viewing this occurrence requires planning and a bit of luck as it tends to only last for a short time at sunrise during mid-summer, Miller said: "With a little bit of planning, nautical guile and good luck, it is possible to visit almost any sea cave at the right time and conditions to witness this Blue Lagoon effect."</p><p>Travelers should be conscious that visiting these caves can quickly become dangerous, and nautical expertise and the right weather conditions are required to safely maneuver them. </p>
Categories: Travel

A New $2-billion Amusement Park Four Times the Size of Disneyland Is Coming to Ohio

Travel and Leisure - Fri, 08/03/2018 - 11:30
<p>Developers are about to break ground on a new amusement park outside of <a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/trip-ideas/things-to-do-in-columbus-ohio" target="_blank">Columbus, Ohio</a>.</p><p>Planet Oasis Ohio is investing $2 billion in the park project, the <a href="https://www.freep.com/story/travel/2018/07/27/amusement-park-columbus-ohio/848587002/" target="_blank">Detroit <em>Free Press</em></a> reported. It will be built on 350 acres of land in Sunbury, or about four times the current size of <a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/trip-ideas/disney-vacations/complete-guide-to-disneyland-resort" target="_blank">Disneyland</a>.</p><p>“Planet Oasis is located in Ohio because it's the center of the universe,” the park's president, David Glimcher, <a href="https://www.citybeat.com/arts-culture/blog/21012239/ohio-to-get-brand-new-2-billion-planet-oasis-theme-park" target="_blank">said in a video</a>.</p><p>Ohio is already home to theme-park-fan-favorite <a href="https://www.cedarpoint.com/tickets-passes/cedar-point-daily-tickets" target="_blank">Cedar Point</a>, as well as Kings Island, outside of Cincinnati. The two amusement parks are some of the most popular in the country, attracting 3.6 million and 3.5 million visitors in 2017, respectively.</p><p>Planet Oasis will have a wide range of activities, including classic amusement park attractions like roller coasters, rock walls, virtual reality, and a ferris wheel. There will also be sand beaches, snowboarding, BMX racing, skydiving, a salt water lake, retail outlets, a Medieval Times, and a butterfly museum.</p><p>Construction is set to begin in December, and parts of the park could open as soon as 2019.</p>
Categories: Travel

A Pilot and First Officer Were Banned From Flying After a Cockpit Brawl Over Airplane Food

Travel and Leisure - Fri, 08/03/2018 - 11:28
<p>Passengers on board an Iraqi Airways flight heading for Baghdad hit a bit of turbulence earlier this week, but it wasn’t because of the weather. Instead, it was due to a rumble between the pilots.</p><p>According to <em><a href="https://liveandletsfly.boardingarea.com/2018/08/02/iraqi-airways-cockpit-fight/" target="_blank">Boarding Area</a></em>, it all began when the first officer on board the plane asked for meal service from the crew. However, the pilot took issue with this because the first officer allegedly didn’t ask for permission to eat. And instead of handling this like professionals, the two threw fists instead. </p><p>“Conversation with the pilot became heated because he forbade a flight attendant from bringing me a meal tray, under the pretext that I hadn’t asked him for authorization,” the first officer wrote in a letter to Iraqi Airways staff in an attempt to defend himself. He claimed that the pilot then began hitting him and attacking him in the cockpit.</p><p>However, <em>Boarding Area</em> reported, things may have gotten even more heated than the first officer let on. The fight allegedly had to be broken up by security and even caused damage to the cockpit area.</p><p>And it looks as though neither the pilot nor the first officer will escape punishment. In a statement, the Iraqi Ministry of Transportation said both men will no longer be allowed to fly.</p><p>“They will have no chance of escaping harsh penalties, and will face the worst and most severe punishments, the least of which is the denial of flight for life,” the statement <a href="http://www.motrans.gov.iq/index.php?name=PortalNews&amp;file=article&amp;sid=5964" target="_blank">read</a>.</p><p>Iraqi Airways is not alone in dealing with poor cockpit behavior.</p><p>In July, an Air China pilot attempted to smoke an e-cigarette. While doing so, the pilot <a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/travel-news/pilot-vaping-in-flight-causes-plane-to-drop-20000-feet" target="_blank">inadvertently turned off the plane’s air conditioning</a> system in an attempt to stop the smoke from reaching the passengers in the airplane. That caused the plane to depressurize and drop more than 20,000 feet. Thankfully, the plane safely landed an hour later.</p><p>And just last week, a former Alaska Airlines pilot was sentenced to jail for <a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/travel-news/alaska-airlines-pilot-prison-flying-under-influence" target="_blank">flying multiple flights while intoxicated</a>. </p><p>Maybe all of these pilots should try this technique to <a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/airlines-airports/breathing-exercises-to-calm-pre-flight-nerves" target="_blank">relax before a flight in 60 seconds or less</a>.</p>
Categories: Travel

All You Need for the Perfect Summer Day in Stockholm Is a Bike and This Itinerary

Travel and Leisure - Fri, 08/03/2018 - 11:00
<p><a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/travel-guide/stockholm-sweden" target="_blank">Stockholm</a> seems custom-designed for an active summer vacation: one-third city, one-third green space, one-third water, and plenty of ways to explore each. But biking hasn’t traditionally been one of them. Scandinavia is full of bike-friendly destinations (Copenhagen, Malmö, Helsinki), but until recently, Stockholm had been left in the dust — strange for the green center of the <a href="https://nordic.businessinsider.com/heres-everything-that-sweden-is-the-best-in-the-world-at--and-its-a-whole-lot-2017-6/" target="_blank">most sustainable country on Earth</a>. Now, the capital is finally catching up to the rest of the region, becoming more bikeable by the day. Which is great for the planet, great for residents, and — considering a 10-minute cab ride can cost $40 — great for visitors, too.</p><p>Over the past five years, the city has <a href="https://streets.mn/2014/07/11/stockholms-steep-climb-to-double-cycling-mode-share/" target="_blank">invested a much-needed $110 million in biking infrastructure</a>, repairing and extending 500 miles of bike lanes, overhauling signage, carving out thousands of new bicycle parking spots, and accounting for bike storage and traffic in all new construction. The local government is also <a href="https://nordic.businessinsider.com/swedens-new-$40-million-electric-bike-subsidy-is-so-popular-that-it-could-run-out-soon--/" target="_blank">subsidizing electric bicycles</a> (up to $1,200 per person) as an eco alternative to taxis for longer treks, and sales are already up 50 percent.</p><img alt="Full length side view of senior couple riding tandem bike on bridge in Stockholm, Sweden "src="https://cdn-image.travelandleisure.com/sites/default/files/styles/1600x1000/public/1532378050/stockholm-sweden-tandem-bike-BIKESTOCKHOLM0718.jpg?itok=MWgr6elm"><p>And it’s not just Stockholmers who will benefit from this two-wheeled renaissance. Visitors are seeing the upside, too, like the decade-old <a href="http://www.citybikes.se/home" target="_blank">City Bikes share program</a> getting the <a href="https://www.treehugger.com/bikes/stockholm-bike-share-will-offer-5000-electric-bikes-just-33-year.html" target="_blank">face-lift</a> it so desperately needs. As part of a massive system upgrade this year, the number of stations will double (to 300) and the number of bikes will quadruple (to 5,000); they’ll be outfitted as hybrids, with the option to attach an electric battery for longer rides; and service will remain open 24/7/365 (bikes were previously available only until 10 p.m., April through October). In addition, riders will be able to take out the City Bikes for up to 12 hours at a time, much longer than the previous two-hour max.</p><img alt="Biking through Stockholm's Djurgarden "src="https://cdn-image.travelandleisure.com/sites/default/files/styles/1600x1000/public/1532378050/djurgarden-bike-BIKESTOCKHOLM0718.jpg?itok=wqbkz8mA"><p>With all these improvements (and sunshine until 10 p.m.), there’s never been a better time to get a new perspective on one of Europe’s prettiest capitals. Check out our itinerary for the perfect summer day in Stockholm, all on two wheels.</p><h2>Check in</h2><p>The first thing that strikes you about the brand-new <a href="https://www.scandichotels.com/hotels/sweden/stockholm/downtown-camper-by-scandic" target="_blank">Downtown Camper by Scandic</a><b> </b>(doubles from $170) is its sultry departure from all the stark-white IKEA minimalism found elsewhere in Stockholm: think dark woods, moody lighting, exposed pipes, cork and leather accents. The second thing you’ll notice is that this place was designed for fun, meaning amenities like a swish lobby barber shop, an in-house movie theater complete with popcorn machine, an “urban hammock” up under the skylights, and a lifestyle concierge to cater to the hotel’s largely active, adventurous guests. On that note, all the kayaks, skateboards, and bicycles you see hanging on walls and from the ceiling aren’t part of the décor — they’re free for the borrowing. But first, the most important meal of the day.</p><h2>Breakfast</h2><p>Eating breakfast at Downtown Camper isn’t a matter of convenience — it’s a matter of the lushest, most complete morning spread anywhere in Stockholm. You’ll find all the (organic) usual suspects: pastries, fruits and veggies, granolas, yogurts, cereals, waffles, pancakes, bacon, sausages, eggs, porridges, custom juice bar. But it’s the Swedish stuff that will lure you back for seconds: smoked salmon and salted cod roe on rye <em>knäckebröd</em>, a glass of sour milk sweetened with rose hips. And keep your phone handy; the tables are <a href="https://www.foodandwine.com/fwx/slideshow/12-food-styling-secrets-learn-pros" target="_blank">styled as if for the pages of <em>Food &amp; Wine</em></a><em>, </em>with tiered displays of pickable herbs and mini citrus trees, lanterns and mason jars, all just begging to be Instagrammed. Now grab a bike from the lobby, pop on a helmet, and get ready to roll.</p><h2>Joy Ride</h2><p>It’s just a two-minute ride down to the harbor, where you’ll glimpse all sorts of important buildings, like the Royal Swedish Opera and the 17th-century Royal Palace. Head for the ample bike path on Strandvägen, a glitzy waterfront boulevard in the posh district of Östermalm, where Swedish royals are often spotted out for lunch and a bit of shopping. Turn right at the bridge for the isle of <a href="https://www.visitstockholm.com/see--do/attractions/djurgarden/" target="_blank">Djurgården</a>, a former royal hunting ground that’s now Stockholm’s ultimate summer haven. Keep to the bike paths around the perimeter for unbeatable vistas of the city and archipelago beyond, or crisscross through the interior to choose your own adventure. You can ride pretty much anywhere on the island, but look for the <em>cykelväg</em> (“bike path”) signs if you’re unsure.</p><img alt="Sweden. Stockholm. Djurgarden. Sign showing one traffic lane for walkers, the other for cyclists. "src="https://cdn-image.travelandleisure.com/sites/default/files/styles/1600x1000/public/1532378050/cycling-signs-djurgarden-stockholm-BIKESTOCKHOLM0718.jpg?itok=4lgE1ho8"><h2>Culture</h2><p>There are plenty of ways to squeeze in some culture on Djurgården, but the funkiest is probably at the highly interactive <a href="http://www.abbathemuseum.com/en/?gclid=EAIaIQobChMI9bzoy7mm3AIVDBSBCh2-FA7LEAAYASAAEgKeGfD_BwE" target="_blank">ABBA The Museum</a>, where you can sing karaoke, channel your inner Dancing Queen on the dance floor, and even record your own music video. History buffs might rather make a beeline for the <a href="https://www.vasamuseet.se/en" target="_blank">Vasa Museum</a>, the most visited one in Scandinavia. The Vasa is a gloriously ornate warship that sank just a few minutes into her maiden voyage in 1628. She lay at the bottom of Stockholm harbor for more than three centuries before a painstaking restoration made her 98-percent complete and more striking than ever.</p><img alt="ABBA museum in Stockholm, Sweden "src="https://cdn-image.travelandleisure.com/sites/default/files/styles/1600x1000/public/1532378050/abba-museum-stockholm-BIKESTOCKHOLM0718.jpg?itok=mPHpM0_G"><h2>Lunch</h2><p>Double back the way you came and after five minutes you’ll hit<em> </em><a href="https://riche.se/" target="_blank">Riche</a>, an Östermalm institution since 1893. The airy space looks like a Parisian brasserie with a strong Swedish accent, an aesthetic reflected in the menu. There’s no wrong move here, but fair warning: the classic meatballs with lingonberries and buttery mash will ruin you for any other. You can even order for takeaway and chow down in the waterfront park one block away.</p><img alt="Guests at Riche, in Stockholm "src="https://cdn-image.travelandleisure.com/sites/default/files/styles/1600x1000/public/1532378050/riche-restaurant-stockholm-BIKESTOCKHOLM0718.jpg?itok=V7g852QB"><h2>Shop</h2><p>Next, pedal over the bridge to<em> Gamla Stan</em> (“Old Town”), parts of which date back to the 13th century. Most of the stores here sell touristy schlock, but it’s worth stopping in at one of the island’s many pick-and-mix candy shops for some inexpensive souvenirs to bring back stateside (if they last that long). Play it safe with chocolates and gummies, or go nuts with some of the weirder licorices and herb-flavored confections. Navigating the island’s medieval alleyways on two wheels can be frustrating in the high season, so stick to the perimeter bike path on your way out for a smoother ride.</p><img alt="Young man sitting with dog waiting in a cobbled street in the old town at one of the oldest candy shops of Stockholm,Sweden "src="https://cdn-image.travelandleisure.com/sites/default/files/styles/1600x1000/public/1532378050/candy-shop-stockholm-BIKESTOCKHOLM0718.jpg?itok=hmAPeyih"><p>Take the Katarinavägen bridge to cross into <a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/local-flavor-international/sodermalm-stockholm-sweden" target="_blank">Södermalm</a>, an ultra-hip island neighborhood that draws frequent (and not unfounded) comparisons to Brooklyn. If you need some air in your tires, pull in to <a href="https://andtherev.com/" target="_blank"><b>ATR</b></a><b> </b>(short for And The Revolution, after Prince’s '80s rock band), where they handcraft handsome bikes and curate snazzy bikecessories for “smart, design-conscious people” — like you! (All of Downtown Camper’s bikes were built by ATR.)</p><p>It’d be easy to lose an entire day browsing Södermalm’s concept boutiques, but in short: <a href="https://papercutshop.se/" target="_blank">Papercut</a> is for irreverent indie mags and artsy-fartsy coffee-table books, <a href="https://www.grandpastore.com/" target="_blank">Grandpa</a> is for fresh-to-death Nordic clothing labels with an in-house DJ, and <a href="http://www.herrjudit.se/brandstationen/" target="_blank">Brandstationen</a> is the “toy store for adults,” with quirky home décor ranging from vintage globes to ostrich-feather lamps.</p><h2>Fika</h2><p><a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/articles/eat-like-a-local-in-stockholm-sweden" target="_blank"><em>Fika</em></a> is what Swedes call their afternoon coffee-and-pastry break, and it’s serious business in Stockholm. For the city’s best <em>kanelbullar </em>(knotty, briochey cinnamon rolls topped with rock sugar), try the Södermalm branch of <a href="https://robindelseliusbageri.se/" target="_blank">Robin Delselius Bageri</a>, an excellent bakery that also makes killer lattes and organic house-pressed juices in very Swedish flavors like elderflower and rhubarb.</p><img alt="Cinnamon Buns And Black Coffee on a Cafe Counter in Stockholm "src="https://cdn-image.travelandleisure.com/sites/default/files/styles/1600x1000/public/1532378050/cinnamon-buns-stockholm-BIKESTOCKHOLM0718.jpg?itok=Bhir4Gkk"><h2>Unwind</h2><p>Ride back through Gamla Stan to <a href="https://www.scandichotels.com/hotels/sweden/stockholm/downtown-camper-by-scandic/wellness" target="_blank">The Nest</a>, the gorgeous spa on top of Downtown Camper. Rinse off, robe on, and then straight for the sauna, which looks like a giant bird’s nest if that bird were a starchitect: undulating blond woods, spaceship lighting, forest-chirping soundtrack. From there, head to the “experience showers” for an ice-cold misting, then into one of the treatment rooms for a (truly) Swedish massage. Best part: the large roof terrace has a heated pool and some of Stockholm’s loveliest views.</p><img alt="Bicycle on Kindstugatan in Gamla Stan, Stockholm "src="https://cdn-image.travelandleisure.com/sites/default/files/styles/1600x1000/public/1532378050/gamla-stan-bike-BIKESTOCKHOLM0718.jpg?itok=JPdPFvWS"><h2>Dinner and Cocktails</h2><p>Teetotalers could hop back on the bike for one last trek, but after a long day of pedaling, you deserve a few cocktails (and thus a taxi). <a href="http://tjoget.com/" target="_blank">Tjoget</a>, your destination back in happening Södermalm, is actually three hot spots in one: barber shop, wine bar, and <a href="http://linjetio.com/" target="_blank">Linje Tio</a>, a lively restaurant and bar that regularly features on the <a href="https://www.worlds50bestbars.com/fifty-best-bars-list/linje-tio.php" target="_blank">World’s 50 Best Bars list</a>. Zesty dishes like tuna confit and spicy grilled lamb go great with cocktail components like sesame syrup, pine tree oil, and caramelized yogurt. (Highly recommended: the East of Paris, a heady blend of gin, sherry, and pomegranate molasses, with a za’atar rim.)</p><h2>Stroll Home</h2><p>If your legs aren’t on empty yet, Stockholm’s lingering summer dusks are ideal for a leisurely 45-minute stroll back to the hotel. Back through Södermalm, and Gamla Stan, past the harborfront — after today, you’ll have no trouble finding the way.</p>
Categories: Travel

It’s Not Too Late to Grab a Cheap Flight for Labor Day

Travel and Leisure - Fri, 08/03/2018 - 10:53
<p>For those looking to squeeze in one final trip for the summer, <a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/holiday-travel/labor-day" target="_blank">Labor Day</a> weekend comes with a bonus day to spend out of office — but it also often comes with a hefty price tag. </p><p>That being said, travelers looking to head out for the holiday can still find a selection of flight deals from Thursday, Aug. 30 through Monday, Sep 3 for as little as $193 round-trip. </p><p>Travel search engine <a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/travel-news/when-to-book-2018-trips" target="_blank">Skyscanner</a> has put together a selection of fares that will get you across to country and to international hot spots for under $300 round-trip, but you'll have to act fast as these deals won't last long.</p><p>Some of the deals include flights from <a href="https://www.skyscanner.com/transport/flights/mia/nasa/180830/180903/?adultsv2=1&amp;childrenv2=&amp;cabinclass=economy&amp;rtn=1&amp;preferdirects=true&amp;outboundaltsenabled=false&amp;inboundaltsenabled=false&amp;qp_prevProvider=ins_browse&amp;qp_prevCurrency=USD&amp;priceSourceId=b3ms-UK1-1&amp;qp_prevPrice=290#results" target="_blank">Miami to Nassau</a> for $299 round-trip, to <a href="https://www.skyscanner.com/transport/flights/mia/nyca/180830/180903/?adultsv2=1&amp;childrenv2=&amp;cabinclass=economy&amp;rtn=1&amp;preferdirects=true&amp;outboundaltsenabled=false&amp;inboundaltsenabled=false&amp;qp_prevProvider=ins_browse&amp;qp_prevCurrency=USD&amp;priceSourceId=b3ms-UK1-1&amp;qp_prevPrice=211#results" target="_blank">New York City</a> for $251 round-trip, and to <a href="https://www.skyscanner.com/transport/flights/mia/sfoa/180830/180903/?adultsv2=1&amp;childrenv2=&amp;cabinclass=economy&amp;rtn=1&amp;preferdirects=true&amp;outboundaltsenabled=false&amp;inboundaltsenabled=false&amp;qp_prevProvider=ins_browse&amp;qp_prevCurrency=USD&amp;priceSourceId=b3ms-UK1-1&amp;qp_prevPrice=227#results" target="_blank">San Francisco</a> for $257 round-trip. </p><p>New York City-based travelers can head to <a href="https://www.skyscanner.com/transport/flights/nyca/ytoa/180830/180903/?adultsv2=1&amp;childrenv2=&amp;cabinclass=economy&amp;rtn=1&amp;preferdirects=true&amp;outboundaltsenabled=false&amp;inboundaltsenabled=false&amp;qp_prevProvider=ins_browse&amp;qp_prevCurrency=USD&amp;priceSourceId=b3ms-UK1-4&amp;qp_prevPrice=281#results" target="_blank">Toronto</a> starting at $257 round-trip and to <a href="https://www.skyscanner.com/transport/flights/nyca/pbi/180830/180903/?adults=1&amp;children=0&amp;adultsv2=1&amp;childrenv2=&amp;infants=0&amp;cabinclass=economy&amp;rtn=1&amp;preferdirects=true&amp;outboundaltsenabled=false&amp;inboundaltsenabled=false&amp;ref=home#results" target="_blank">West Palm Beach</a> for $246 round-trip, while Los Angeles fliers can find deals to <a href="https://www.skyscanner.com/transport/flights/laxa/ausa/180830/180903/?adultsv2=1&amp;childrenv2=&amp;cabinclass=economy&amp;rtn=1&amp;preferdirects=true&amp;outboundaltsenabled=false&amp;inboundaltsenabled=false&amp;qp_prevProvider=ins_browse&amp;qp_prevCurrency=USD&amp;priceSourceId=b3ms-UK1-5&amp;qp_prevPrice=279#results" target="_blank">Austin</a> for $289 round-trip, to <a href="https://www.skyscanner.com/transport/flights/laxa/chia/180830/180903/?adultsv2=1&amp;childrenv2=&amp;cabinclass=economy&amp;rtn=1&amp;preferdirects=true&amp;outboundaltsenabled=false&amp;inboundaltsenabled=false&amp;qp_prevProvider=ins_browse&amp;qp_prevCurrency=USD&amp;priceSourceId=b3ms-UK1-5&amp;qp_prevPrice=266#results" target="_blank">Chicago</a> for $300 round-trip, and to <a href="https://www.skyscanner.com/transport/flights/laxa/wasa/180830/180903/?adultsv2=1&amp;childrenv2=&amp;cabinclass=economy&amp;rtn=1&amp;preferdirects=true&amp;outboundaltsenabled=false&amp;inboundaltsenabled=false&amp;qp_prevProvider=ins_browse&amp;qp_prevCurrency=USD&amp;priceSourceId=b3ms-UK1-5&amp;qp_prevPrice=295#results" target="_blank">Washington, D.C</a> for $293 round-trip.</p><p>Flights from <a href="https://www.skyscanner.com/transport/flights/chia/bosa/180830/180903/?adultsv2=1&amp;childrenv2=&amp;cabinclass=economy&amp;rtn=1&amp;preferdirects=true&amp;outboundaltsenabled=false&amp;inboundaltsenabled=false&amp;qp_prevProvider=ins_browse&amp;qp_prevCurrency=USD&amp;priceSourceId=b3ms-UK2-3&amp;qp_prevPrice=157#results" target="_blank">Chicago to Boston</a> start at $193 round-trip, while flights to <a href="https://www.skyscanner.com/transport/flights/chia/sana/180830/180903/?adultsv2=1&amp;childrenv2=&amp;cabinclass=economy&amp;rtn=1&amp;preferdirects=true&amp;outboundaltsenabled=false&amp;inboundaltsenabled=false&amp;qp_prevProvider=ins_browse&amp;qp_prevCurrency=USD&amp;priceSourceId=b3ms-UK2-3&amp;qp_prevPrice=223#results" target="_blank">San Diego</a> start at $276 round-trip. There are also flights from <a href="https://www.skyscanner.com/transport/flights/houa/laxa/180830/180903/?adultsv2=1&amp;childrenv2=&amp;cabinclass=economy&amp;rtn=1&amp;preferdirects=true&amp;outboundaltsenabled=false&amp;inboundaltsenabled=false&amp;qp_prevProvider=ins_browse&amp;qp_prevCurrency=USD&amp;priceSourceId=b3ms-UK2-1&amp;qp_prevPrice=211#results" target="_blank">Houston to Los Angeles</a> for $200 round-trip, while flights from <a href="https://www.skyscanner.com/transport/flights/houa/dena/180830/180903/?adultsv2=1&amp;childrenv2=&amp;cabinclass=economy&amp;rtn=1&amp;preferdirects=true&amp;outboundaltsenabled=false&amp;inboundaltsenabled=false&amp;qp_prevProvider=ins_browse&amp;qp_prevCurrency=USD&amp;priceSourceId=b3ms-UK2-1&amp;qp_prevPrice=271#results" target="_blank">Houston to Denver </a>are starting at $301 round-trip.</p><p>For those willing to shell out a bit more to head out of the country, Skyscanner also found <a href="http://file:///Users/tavakian1271/Library/Caches/TemporaryItems/Outlook%20Temp/Labor%20Day%202018%20Prices%20By%20Cities%5B1%5D.html" target="_blank">flight deals from various U.S. cities to international destinations</a> that come in at under $500 round-trip, with flights available to San Juan, Guadalajara, Mexico City, Toronto, Nassau, St. Thomas, San Jose, Havana, Cancun, Bogota, and Calgary.</p>
Categories: Travel

This Italian-leather Bag Is Scratchproof, Water-resistant, and Packed With Pockets

Travel and Leisure - Fri, 08/03/2018 - 10:30
<p>Last season, I invested in a designer handbag that I planned to dub my travel bag for eternity. (The price tag warranted eternal use if we were going to measure the investment using dollar-per-wear logic.) At first, it seemed perfect. It was big enough to carry all of my necessary — and unnecessary — <a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/style/travel-accessories/little-travel-luxuries" target="_blank">travel accessories</a> and chic enough for me to tote around all the <a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/worlds-best/airports-international" target="_blank">international airports</a> of my jet-setting pipe dreams. But almost immediately, I learned this bag wasn’t conducive to travel at all.</p><p>It was so heavy on its own that I had to leave my laptop behind, and it still managed to leave my back in knots. It was too bulky to fit comfortably under the seat in front of me on the plane. There was only one internal pocket, which inevitably turned the main compartment into a black hole where everything I needed to retrieve required a two-minute search period. (TSA agents were unamused as I explained this while frantically searching for my boarding pass.) And though I only wore it once before again stowing it in its fancy duster bag in the back of my closet, the leather scratched, making it look like I had owned it for years. At the end of the day, this bag — save for its brand name — didn’t feel like an investment at all.</p><p><strong>Related:</strong> <a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/style/shoes/most-comfortable-dress-shoes-for-women" target="_blank">10 of the Most Comfortable Dress Shoes for Women</a></p><p>Enter: Senreve, the label behind “beautiful bags that know how to multitask.” Like myself, the company’s co-founders Coral Chung and Wendy Wen were in search of the perfect luxury handbag, one that was both chic and feminine but also versatile enough to keep up with the fast pace of our daily lives. When they had no luck finding one, they decided to design it themselves. Now, almost two years later, Senreve’s crafted-in-Italy, leather bags are beloved by popular style bloggers like <a href="https://www.travelandleisure.com/style/fashion/gal-meets-glam-collection-launch" target="_blank">Julia Engel of Gal Meets Glam</a> and slung on the arms of celebrities like Priyanka Chopra and Jessica Alba.</p><p> </p><p>Of Senreve’s line-up of satchels, <a href="https://www.senreve.com/collections/new" target="_blank">belt bags</a>, and clutches, the Maestra bags — recently released in a <a data-ecommerce="true" href="https://shop.nordstrom.com/s/senreve-medium-maestra-pebbled-leather-convertible-satchel/4888393" target="_blank">new medium size</a> — are our favorite silhouette. Each has up to eight interior pockets, including one big enough (and padded) to fit up to a 15-inch laptop in the largest size. The bag itself weighs less than three pounds, which is, on average, two to three pounds lighter than comparably sized bags. Versatile, too, the convertible straps of the Maestra allow it to easily be worn as a satchel, tote, cross-body, or backpack. And the brand also makes an <a data-ecommerce="true" href="https://shop.nordstrom.com/s/senreve-caddy-microsuede-handbag-organizer/4888402" target="_blank">organizer insert</a>, just in case you’re a 20-pocket kind of traveler.</p><p>Did we also mention they’re scratch-, stain- and water-resistant? So if you’re vacationing with kids — or if you’re a serial spiller yourself — fear not, because your bag will stay sleek, elegant, and as like-new as the day you got it. </p><h2>Senreve Mini Maestra Bag</h2><img alt="senreve maestra bag "src="https://cdn-image.travelandleisure.com/sites/default/files/styles/1600x1000/public/1533143181/senreve-mini-nordstrom-SENREVE0818.jpg?itok=cF5gJ4vI"><p>To buy: <a data-ecommerce="true" href="https://shop.nordstrom.com/s/senreve-mini-maestra-pebbled-leather-satchel/4750062" target="_blank">nordstrom.com</a>, $695</p><h2>Senreve Midi Maestra Bag</h2><img alt="senreve bag "src="https://cdn-image.travelandleisure.com/sites/default/files/styles/1600x1000/public/1533144698/senreve-midi-bag-SENREVE0818.jpg?itok=TQ14qnK1"><p>To buy: <a data-ecommerce="true" href="https://www.shopbop.com/medium-maestra-bag-senreve/vp/v=1/1530184500.htm" target="_blank">shopbop.com</a>, $795</p><h2>Senreve Maestra Bag</h2><img alt="senreve maestra bag "src="https://cdn-image.travelandleisure.com/sites/default/files/styles/1600x1000/public/1533143181/senreve-full-size-SENREVE0818.jpg?itok=wRyUED3q"><p>To buy: <a data-ecommerce="true" href="https://www.shopbop.com/maestra-bag-senreve/vp/v=1/1537060247.htm" target="_blank">shopbop.com</a>, $895</p><h2>Senreve Microsuede Handbag Organizer</h2><img alt="senreve bag organizer "src="https://cdn-image.travelandleisure.com/sites/default/files/styles/1600x1000/public/1533143181/bag-organizer-SENREVE0818.jpg?itok=vRZiqFMg"><p>To buy: <a data-ecommerce="true" href="https://shop.nordstrom.com/s/senreve-caddy-microsuede-handbag-organizer/4888402" target="_blank">nordstrom.com</a>, $195</p>
Categories: Travel

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