The Telegraph's Soo Kim reports on plans to open a Jackie Chan theme park in Beijing. The best news? Admission is expected to be free. (Peter Schlesinger)
Skift takes a look at budget airline Ryanair's first foray into social media. Famously brash, the company is now tweeting with attitude. (P.S.)
I'm a sucker for commercials with nice music. This new Carnival Cruise Lines ad (the company's first TV spot since the Triumph debacle last spring) fits the bill. Showcasing Instagram photos from passengers, it is an upbeat step forward for the beleaguered cruise line. The New York Times reports. (P.S.)
Michigan’s northeastern shores have charming coves, towering sand dunes, tiny fishing towns, orchards, and vineyards. Peak season for this area is typically early-mid October, but you can sign up for weekly fall color report on michigan.org. Drive along Grand Traverse Bay where you’ll find fiery-hued maples and oak leaves that stand out against green pine, fir, and spruce trees. The 11-room Chateau Chantal inn and vineyard sits on a 65-acre estate on Old Mission Peninsula. Not only do they serve amazing breakfasts, but they also have their own own tasting room and winery where they produce Riesling, Chardonnay, Pinot Grigio, Pinot Noir, Merlot, Cabernet Franc and other varietals. Doubles from $190/night.
A new twist in Edward Snowden's NSA leaks? Evidence that the organization tapped into at least three foreign airlines' reservations systems—leading Skift's Rafat Ali to speculate that their data dive may have touched everything from OTA records to domestic booking data and beyond. (Nikki Ekstein)
The Greenporter Hotel is in the heart of the North Fork's wine country, in historic Greenport, Long Island two hours from Manhattan by car. With floors of bright maple and sleek aluminum furnishings, the 30 rooms are all about cool minimalism and convey the feel of a comfortable beach house. The restaurant Cuvee Seafood & Grille highlights seasonal produce, seafood, game, and wine from vineyards and local purveyors. Sip rosé at Croteaux Vineyards in the shaded garden, visit McCall Wines, Long Island’s largest vineyard for Pinot Noir, or stroll around Paumanok Vineyards, known for its crisp, fruity Chenin Blanc. Fall rates start at $149 on weekdays and $239 on weekends.
Getting excited for one last hurrah this Labor Day? You’re not alone. Far from it, in fact.
According to travel club AAA, 34.1 million Americans will travel 50 miles or more during the holiday weekend. That’s up 4.2 percent from last year, and is the highest number since 2008, when a staggering 45.1 million took a vacation.
An “increasingly positive economic output and optimism in the housing market” are the main factors of this year’s higher numbers, says AAA president and CEO Robert Darbelnet. With home prices improving across much of the country, “more families are feeling comfortable about traveling.”
Scoot Airlines, a low-cost spinoff of Singapore Air, has joined Malaysia's Air Asia X in offering child-free zones on its flights. The new ScootinSilence seats, which cost as little as $15 more, offer travelers a few more inches of legroom and the promise of no seatmates under the the age of 12. The jury's still out on whether U.S. domestic carriers would find a market for such seats. Marketwatch has the story. (Amy Farley)
The ever-helpful George Hobica of Airfare Watchdog has assembled a list of the airports providing Wi-Fi service, outlining both the network names and costs. We'll be sure to consult it before heading on our next flight. (Nikki Ekstein)
Also from Circa News, scientists in western Nevada have discovered petroglyphs from as many as 14,800 years ago, making them the oldest rock out found in North America. (A.G.)
In tech travel news, Sky News reveals that New Zealand aviation authorities have given jetpack developers a flying permit, allowing the company to run test flights. (A.G)
The Boston Globe's Christopher Muther meets with the general manager of Forum, the restaurant at the epicenter of Boston's Marathon Bombings that is reopening today four months after the attacks. (Peter Schlesinger)
This week's Economist investigates how doping scandals are affecting travel trends at the Baseball Hall of Fame. (P.S)
Don’t you hate it when this happens? An American man accidentally snapped a finger off a 600-year-old statue of the Virgin Mary at a museum in Florence. Oh yeah, and he’s a surgeon. [Daily Mail] (Amy Farley)
A new skyscraper in Spain's resort town Benidorm is almost finished, except they forgot to build an elevator…Jamie Condliffe from Gimodo shares the bizarre story. (Peter Schlesinger)
"Bucharest not Budapest" is the Romanian capital's new tourism campaign, highlighting that the city, dubbed the Paris of the East, should not be compared to similarly-named Hungarian capital. Feargus O'Sullivan from The Atlantic Cities reports. (P.S.)