/
Close
Newsletters  | Mobile

RSS Feed Travel News

Why We Love Boston More Than Ever

201304-hd-boston-blogjpg

As we, and the rest of the country, wait for information about the horrific bombing in Boston yesterday, we'll be sending our hopes and prayers to that city's residents. We also want to take a moment to remember all the things we love about that classic American city and look forward to visiting there again soon.

There's a reason T+L's readers selected Boston as America's Favorite City in 2008: Steeped in history, Boston also has a cool, modern edge. What's not to like in a town that has beautiful parks like Boston Common, great museums like the Boston Children's Museum, historic waterfront areas, and beloved sports venues like Fenway Park? And, of course, great food, especially pizza. (Top among America's Best this year.) Need more reasons Boston is the best? The charming regional accents, the colleges, the college bars, and the amazing hotels.

For these and so many other reasons, we love Boston. To all our friends and readers there, we're thinking of you and we hope to see you soon. Yours is a world class city, and you mean the world to us.

Photo © Della Huff / Alamy

Big Ben to Be Silenced During Thatcher Funeral

201304-b-big-ben-londonjpg

The iconic chimes of London's Elizabeth Tower (aka, Big Ben) will be silenced on Wednesday while Margaret Thatcher is laid to rest, according to various reports, including this one from the BBC. Thatcher died at age 87 on April 8. This is the first time the bells have been silenced for a funeral since 1965 in honor of Winston Churchill.

Wednesday's funeral will include a procession that travels from the Palace of Westminster (home of the Parliament) to the Church of St. Clement Danes and then onto St. Paul's Cathedral where the service will be held. Among those expected to be in attendance at the 2,300-seat cathedral, will be the Queen and Prince Philip, Tony and Cherie Blair, Newt Gingrich, and Andrew Lloyd Webber, according to the BBC. The Huffington Post also noted on Twitter that Michele Bachmann will be in attendance.

Related: World's Most Beautiful Clock Towers and The London Travel Guide


Photo credit: © Paul Hardy/Corbis

CNN Video: What the Airline Quality Rankings Mean

T+L's International Editor Mark Orwoll appeared in on CNN this weekend to discuss the airline quality rankings released last week. Watch as he discusses the rise of customer complaints about surcharges, ticketing, and personnel and offers tips about getting the seat you want and not getting bumped.

Sticky Fingers: Who Steals What From Hotel Rooms

201304-b-hotel-theft-by-nationalityjpg

Better nail down those in-room amenities! Hotels.com has just released the results of a poll it conducted asking 8,500 travelers from 28 different countries what they have stolen from hotel rooms (beyond toiletries, of course). The results are full of surprises.

Danes are apparently the most scrupulous travelers among us. A full 88 percent of them claimed to have not stolen anything from their hotel rooms. Dutch and Norwegians rounded out the honor roll of ethical travelers, with 85 and 84 percent, respectively, taking nothing extra home with them. The most admittedly sticky-fingered travelers in the world: Colombians—57 percent of whom conceded to have taken something from a hotel.

What do people take? Thirty percent of Indian travelers admit to taking books and magazines from their rooms. Seventeen percent of Americans have walked home with linens and towels. Seven percent of Colombian travelers have slipped either a robe or a pillow into their bag. Electronics (!!!) are most popular with Finnish travelers (4 percent), while furnishings—including lamps, clocks, and artwork—go home most frequently with Chinese travelers (13 percent).

Of course, whether the results of this poll reflect the actual thieving tendencies of travelers or their honesty in filling out a survey is unknown. Who knows? Maybe those upstanding Danes are just pulling the wool over our collective eyes.

See: Stealing Hotel Amenities: Right or Wrong? and Hotel Detectives

Amy FarleyHave a travel dilemma? Need some tips and remedies? Send your questions to news editor Amy Farley at tripdoctor@aexp.com. Follow @tltripdoctor on Twitter.

Photo credit: © 2013 Hotels.com

Watch: Should You Take a Cruise Now?

T+L's International Editor Mark Orwoll appeared on CNBC's On the Money With Maria Bartiromo to discuss the cruise industry this weekend. Watch as Orwoll shares his insights into the state of cruising, post-Carnival Triumph and whether it's the right time to book your trip.

Related: Best Cruises for Families and How to Choose Your Cruise

Boston Hosts Three Coffee Championships This Weekend

201304-b-scaa-coffee-competitionjpg

This is a big weekend for Boston, and I’m not talking about the thousands of runners descending on the city for its famed marathon, which takes place next Monday. No, I’m talking about the three, I repeat three, coffee competitions occurring in the city.

So what exactly are these caffeinated contests?

At the United States Barista Championship, baristas who have won regional championships across the country duke it out at the national level, preparing and serving an espresso, a cappuccino, and a signature drink of their own creation to four "sensory judges"—all in under fifteen minutes.

The Cup Tasters Championship, meanwhile, has the contestants do the drinking. They sip back eight sets of three coffee-cups, and each set has two cups of the same coffee and one miss-fit. Whoever correctly identifies the most outliers in the shortest amount of time becomes the champion. Sound difficult? It is, and it tests the participants' ability "to smell, taste, recall and concentrate," according to the event description.

And lastly, there’s the Brewers Cup, which celebrates the "art of manual coffee brewing." Competitors first brew the same cup of coffee, and whoever advances to the next round must then brew and present their own coffee. Judges score based on taste and presentation, and the winner will represent the United States at the World Brewers Cup Championship in Melbourne, Australia.

The three competitions are being held in tandem at the Boston Convention & Exhibition Center, and are co-sponsored by the Specialty Coffee Association of America. With so many coffee beans being ground in one weekend, Boston may actually merit the name Beantown for once.

Peter Schlesinger is an editorial intern at Travel + Leisure.

Photo of 2012 U.S. Barista Champion Katie Carguilo by Liz Clayton

Trip Doctor Series: Cooking Schools (Vietnam)

2013-hd-hanoi-cooking-centrejpg

For this month’s weekly series on immersive culinary courses, we’re transporting you to the foodie mecca of Vietnam. Still hungry? Check out our April food issue’s Global Guide to Cooking Schools

The School: The Hanoi Cooking Centre, located near the city’s Old Quarter, offers hands-on, half-day lessons on everything from the flavor-rich dishes of the northern highlands to the seafood-centric specialties of the country’s southern coast.

The Class: Sign up for Vietnamese Street Food, a course that teaches students how to whip up their own pho cuon (fresh noodle spring rolls) and green pawpaw salad, among other delicacies from the streets of Hanoi.

Jennifer FlowersJennifer Flowers is an Associate Editor at Travel + Leisure and part of the Trip Doctor news team. Find her on Twitter at @JennFlowers.

Photo courtesy of Hanoi Cooking Centre

The Doctor Recommends: Must Reads for the Week Ending April 12, 2013

Fans of the Ping Island rescue operation scene in Wes Anderson's Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou will love these Tokyo Times photos of the abandoned Fujiya Hotel in Shimoda. (Matt Haber)

Coffee fanatics should check out David Farley's Afar piece "Coffeland," in which the author went to southern Ethiopia to learn more about coffee culture. (M.H.)

Vanity Fair's William Langewiesche goes inside the mind of Felix Baumgartner, the daredevil who undertook the highest free-fall in history last October. (M.H.)

Real life princess (and mother-to-be), the Duchess of Cambridge Kate Middleton will soon be the godmother of a new cruise ship, the Royal Princess, reports Chloe Berman of Travel Weekly UK. (Peter Schlesinger)

The Twitterverse is now expanding into music. According to Mashable's Chris Taylor, the social network is launching an app today after its acquisition of the music discovery site We Are Hunted. All the more tunes for your weekend getaway. (Maria Pedone)

Jay-Z's "Open Letter" says all it takes to go to Cuba is an OK from the President, but CBS News travel editor Peter Greenberg isn't about to let you believe it. Over on his blog, he sets the record straight for those who aren't buddies with the First Family (or prefer to do things legally). (Nikki Ekstein)

Travel Weekly's Michelle Baran takes an in-depth look at the rise of culinary travel in the last decade. (N.E.)

Trip Doctor: Delta's Expiration-Free SkyMiles Now Expire With You

201301-b-delta-aircraftjpg

In 2011, Delta made headlines by axing expiration dates on SkyMiles, the airline’s frequent flier mileage program. Last month, the carrier garnered some less friendly press with a slight addendum to its no-expiration policy: The miles don’t expire…until the mileage holder does.

Prior to the March 20 announcement, SkyMiles could transfer to next of kin, but as NBC reported, such transactions are no longer permitted by Delta. Frequent fliers are unsurprisingly displeased at the policy change, and have even started an online petition against it.

But not all the heat should fall on Delta. JetBlue, Southwest, and United all have similar restrictions. Meanwhile, a slew of other airlines, including Alaska, American Airlines, and US Airways allow miles earned to transfer after death.

Delta spokeswoman Chris Kelly Singley has countered any criticism by noting that SkyMiles reward those who have directly participated in the program and showed loyalty to the airline.

Frequent Flier's Tim Winship explained the main takeaway to NBC: “The lesson there is don’t allow yourself to be in a position where you’re sitting on a huge cache of frequent flier miles because tomorrow the program that you earned those miles in could make some kind of an enormous systemic change that pulls the rug out from under the value of those miles.” How comforting.

Peter Schlesinger is an editorial intern at Travel + Leisure.

Photo by Lyndsey Matthews

TODAY Show Video: Should You Book a Deep Discount Carnival Cruise?

T+L's Nilou Motamed appeared on The Today Show this morning to discuss Carnival Cruise Lines' special low price offerings following its string of difficulties earlier this year.

Watch to learn more about these unusually low priced deals and find out how to book now.

Advertisement

Sign Up


Connect With Travel + Leisure
  • Travel+Leisure
  • Tablet
  • Available devices

Already a subscriber?
Get FREE ACCESS to the digital edition


Advertisement


Advertisement

Advertisement

Marketplace