Luang Prabang’s daily alms offering—a silent procession of monks accepting food from alms-givers—was nearly cancelled because of some disrespectful behavior among observers. The government, keen to retain the tourist revenue generated by the ceremony, allegedly arranged to have citizens dress up as monks if the holy men withdrew from the ritual, but so far the tradition continues.
At today’s Waikiki SPAM Jam—the annual manifestation of Hawaii’s abiding love for the canned pink meat—local artisanal popsicle company Onopops will be selling some custom flavors: Peanut Butter Ice Cream with Candied SPAM, and Pineapple Sorbet with Candied SPAM, Brown Spice & Cherries popsicles.
It's a measurable fact, some roller coasters are better than others; whether it's super speeds, staggering heights, or a seemingly endless track, each of these eight thrill rides possesses something you won't find anywhere else in the world.
Everybody knows that "aloha" means both hello and goodbye, and that the Hawaiian pizza wasn't actually invented there (Ontario, duh), but did you know that Hawaii is pretty much responsible for your precious pog collection? Or that Tom Selleck's mustache is considered a state treasure?!? Ok, not really. But it should be, right?
Yes, the 50th state in the Union is more than just a beautiful island destination where folks go to shred the gnar and private investigators never run out of cases; here are a few more things you should absolutely know about it.
Attention all adrenaline junkies: Thanks to a new program from Kent Mountain Adventure Center, you now have the chance to camp out on a sheer rock face near Colorado’s Rocky Mountain National Park in Roosevelt National Forest
The list of Peruvian restaurants in London seems to grow longer each month as Chotto Matte, Ceviche, Andina, Coya, and Lima (the first Peruvian restaurant to receive a Michelin star) are playing with ancient culinary traditions and introducing them to eager foodies. While each spot decidedly offers their own style, it's the blend of Japanese and Peruvian techniques and flavors, called Nikkei cuisine, that offers some of the most innovative, exciting dishes I’ve tasted.
The 127-year-old Grand Hotel opens for the 2014 season this weekend, but Lake Huron’s winter hasn’t quite given up. So far, thick ice has kept the ferries from making regular trips across the Straits of Mackinac and the hotel is encouraging guests to fly over instead. (This sunny shot promises summer ahead, though!)
In an attempt to garner more interest in Denver's Colorado Symphony Orchestra, it will be performing a series of fundraising concerts entitled, “Classically Cannabis” and yes, it’s exactly what it sounds like.
Starting today, visitors to Jasper National Park in the Canadian Rockies can view the glacial vistas and sweeping pine valleys from the Glacier Skywalk – and the breathtaking glass observation platform that extends from the cliff’s edge at a staggering height of 918 feet.
Finding a great view in Banff or Jasper National Parks in Alberta has never been hard, but the new Glacier Skywalk (opening May 1) adds a stomach-in-your-throat thrill to the hunt. The glass-paved walkway is cantilevered 100 feet over the edge of a cliff, more than 900 feet above the valley floor.
In an age where single-dimensional cell phone screens often guide us to our next getaway, the Nendo Watanabe Globe is a pretty reminder that the earth is indeed round. This collaboration between Monocle and Japanese designer Nendo Watanabe, distinguishes major cities in bold type against a clean black and silver background. Nendo’s corona globe is the perfect piece to inspire travel.
Maria Pedone is a contributor to TravelandLeisure.com.
Retailer Pilot and Captain celebrates the "good old days of planes, trains, and discovery." Their exclusive collection of city-specific t-shirts, prints, and travel products are perfect for the for the always-on-the-go adventurer.
The world's largest observation wheel, smartly dubbed the High Roller, recently opened in Las Vegas.
At 550 feet tall, it forms the centerpiece of Sin City's newest development, The LINQ, and rises 107 feet taller than the London Eye. Moving 1 foot per second, its 28 glass cabins take a half hour to complete their revolution.
And if you thought the Strip needed to be just a little brighter, the High Roller's builders agreed. They've added a whopping 2,000 LED lights to the city's skyline.
For more information and tickets, visit the High Roller's website.
Peter Schlesinger is a research assistant at Travel + Leisure, and a member of the Trip Doctor news team. You can find him on Twitter at @pschles08.
That’s a picture of my boarding pass for a recent flight from Fort Lauderdale to New York. I printed it out in the lobby of my beachfront hotel just before racing to the airport. I felt great that I was cleared for expedited screening in the TSA PreCheck lane, but not so great when the TSA agent frowned and said, “This boarding pass is no good.”
Starting May 1, three American Express cards are doing away with foreign transaction fees, joining the ranks of cards like the Orbitz Rewards Visa, which we introduced last week. The current rate of 2.7 percent will no longer apply to the Consumer and Business Delta SkyMiles Platinum, Gold, and Reserve cards. According to Melanie Backs, Director of Public Affairs at American Express, “We know that these Card Members travel internationally, and we are always looking for ways to add more value to our cards.”
Denver-based Frontier Airlines is the latest carrier to charge extra for carry-on bags that require overhead storage—joining other add-on fees for non-alcoholic drinks ($1.99) and seat assignments (up to $8). In exchange, the airline is lowering its ticket prices by 12%.
Mark Zuckerberg will be spending a lot of quality time with celebrities like Leonardo DiCaprio and Rihanna in San Francisco's Fisherman's Wharf.
Immortalized in wax, Zuckerberg has joined fellow A-listers at Madame Tussauds, forever wearing a classic hoodie and pair of jeans, while sitting on a chair barefoot. Seems like the perfect superstar addition to the Bay Area—and a fun new selfie opp for tourists.
Gabrielle Blitz is Associate Social Media Editor at Travel + Leisure.
May, National Bike Month, celebrates a mode of transportation that can make sightseeing a breezy undertaking. Following bike-share models pioneered in Western Europe and China, 20 U.S. cities currently have pay-and-ride systems in place. Vietnam, pictured here, plans to launch a pilot bike-share in five cities in 2015.
UPDATE: Whether you live in the Deep South, the Midwest or along the East Coast, you're likely to experience severly stormy weather today. According to CNN, 75 million Americans, or a third of the country, are under threat of severe weather, which may include tornadoes, high winds and hail; the Deep South has been the hardest hit, with a powerful spring storm system overtaking Mississippi and Alabama. The risk of severe weather is expected to continue through Wednesday, and may affect Americans living between the Great Lakes and the Gulf Coast, and through the Midwest and the East Coast.
This one falls in the “Are you kidding?” category: Just as East Coasters from New Jersey to Massachusetts are coming back online and picking up the pieces after the ravages of Hurricane Sandy, a nor’easter is threatening to wallop the same area this Wednesday or Thursday. Named for the direction the storm travels, this type of weather typically has many of the same characteristics as a hurricane—fierce winds, heavy rains or snow, and—brace yourselves (again) coastal residents—tidal flooding.
While this new storm is not expected to be pack the same intensity as Sandy, it is worth watching—especially in the Carolinas. Whether you live in its projected path, are planning a trip East, or just want to have smart weather forecasts in your pocket, there are five Webby Award-winning apps that should be on your Doppler radar:
Well, we called it - René Redzepi's Noma reclaimed first place this year at the prestigious World's Best Restaurants awards. Noma first received the honor in 2010 and held steady through 2012, but came in second last year to Spain's El Celler de Can Roca, which retreated to second place in this year's rankings. T+L's Adam Sachs recently caught up with the revered chef in New York City.
A pocket-size mutt stares intently up at René Redzepi through the window of Tacos Morelos, a four-table taqueria in New York’s East Village. We’ve over-ordered—tongue tacos and fish tacos and house-made tortillas folded around a stewy, soft thing called suadero. This might seem an unlikely place to lunch with the charming forager, chef of Copenhagen’s Noma, chief progenitor of the New Nordic style, and accidental ringleader for a generation of international chef dudes. But René Redzepi is really into tacos. Enough so that his next venture will be helping Noma’s sous-chef, Rosio Sanchez, open a new taco shop in Copenhagen called Hija de Sanchez. (Yes, there are Mexican restaurants in Copenhagen. No, they’re not any good. “You’ve got Danish students in sombreros serving you,” Redzepi says, sadly. “You want to punch them.”)
The rideshare service Lyft—which debuted last year exclusively in San Francisco—recently launched in 24 new markets. Now, the app connects the world’s largest network of on-demand rides with people who need a lift.
Francophiles and luxury aficionados take note. The Parisian maker of the finely crafted handbags, Moynat, has a pop up shop at the Dover Street Market in NYC. Founder, Pauline Moynat, is said to be the only woman trunk-maker in history and began in the Paris theater district as a supplier to the Comedie Franciase in 1849. She created a handbag for Rejane, an actress of the Belle Époque, which has been reinvented by the current artistic director, Ramesh Nair in colors like robin’s egg blue and canary yellow.
There’s much ado about Shakespeare at Gatwick Airport, and the United Kingdom’s largest airline, easyJet, is leading the fanfare. With record-breaking “onbard” entertainment and a special edition Shakespeare aircraft, the 450thbirthday of the greatest English writer in history did not go unnoticed.
A Victorian residence painted to look like the house in the Pixar movie "Up" is angering neighbors, but perhaps it'll be a new attraction for the city of Santa Clara, California, best known for its university and the 1777 Mission Santa Clara de Asis.
Given the rate of their output, if Le Fooding, the indispensable French restaurant guide, has been taking long French-style vacations, well, they’re obviously burning the midnight oil during the rest of the year. Since launching in 2000 as an insert, the annual publication has rolled out traveling food festivals and star chef pop-ups, which have steadily picked up steam, especially in the past three years.
Social media has gone to the dogs! Some of the biggest celebrities out in the social-sphere are also favorite travel companions: your pets. We’re discussing how to travel with pets this Tuesday, April 29th from 2 p.m. to 3 p.m. EDT. Whether you need tips on flying with animals, details on great pet travel resources, or if you're just looking for fun pictures and videos of jet-set pets, join our chat.
Assistant Editor and Trip Doctor team member, Nikki Ekstein, @nikkiekstein
Now through June 16, fans can enter the hotel’s Suitestakes for a chance to win the ultimate VIP weekend, valued at over $60,000.
If you win, you can spend the weekend admiring the 20-foot “Waterfall of Diamonds” chandelier, the grand piano, the 10-seat dining room, wood burning fireplace, or the floor-to-ceiling windows with a view of the Manhattan skyline, in your very own suite. Oh, did we mention that you would have access to the house car service in a dedicated Mercedes or Maybach?
This Suitestakes is nothing less than palatial.
Gabrielle Blitz is Associate Social Media Editor at Travel + Leisure.