Sleep on a Gorgeous Lake in Thailand at This Luxury Hotel Built on Rafts

Travel and Leisure - 45 min 26 sec ago
<p>This hotel takes water beds to the next level.</p><p>At a <a href="" target="_blank">new hotel</a> in western Thailand, guests can either choose traditional accommodation on land — or kick things up a notch on a private floating “raft.”</p><p><a href="" target="_blank">Z9 Resort</a> on Srinakarin Lake allows guests to get out and experience nature — without leaving their room. There are 15 “floating houses” that guests can book for endless water views and an unearthly tranquil environment.</p><img alt="Aerial view of the floating Z9 Resort, in Thailand "src=""><p>In order to access their floating accommodations, guests walk out on a dock and to their own private “raft.” Each room has floor-to-ceiling glass to make the most of the view. There’s an en-suite bathroom and air conditioning for when it gets too hot. Guests can also order room service if they’re determined to keep up the relaxing seclusion.</p><img alt="Z9 Resort Luxury Raft Hotel in Thailand "src=""><img alt="Thailand's Z9 floating hotel at dusk "src=""><p>One of the hotel’s best perks is that guests have open access to the water. Directly from their terrace, guests can kayak out onto the lake. (And there are life vests ready to go in the closet.)</p><p>The hotel was designed by Dersyn Studio, a design firm based in Bangkok. Although it may seem like a unique aesthetic choice, the architects behind the project chose to build on water to protect the environment. By creating the floating rafts, the project could cut back on the amount of land that needed to be excavated for the hotel. The project was built with sustainable practices with discarded lumber. The ceiling are made from compressed wood flakes.</p><img alt="Room at the Z9 Resort in Thailand "src=""><img alt="Restaurant at the Z9 Resort in Thailand "src=""><p>Rates for the hotel <a href="" target="_blank">start at about $204 (6,600 Thai Bhat) per night</a>, with breakfast and kayaking including.</p>
Categories: Travel

I Got a Taste of Royal Caribbean's Private Island CocoCay — Here's What to Expect When It Opens As a Record-breaking Water Park

Travel and Leisure - 1 hour 45 min ago
<p>The daily grind is a necessary but oftentimes torturous thing, and for most, escaping it boils down to two main factors: money and time off. If you’re lucky, you’ll receive <a href="" target="_blank">two glorious weeks of paid vacation</a> to enjoy any which way you choose — parceling out your days carefully to stretch your time off throughout the year in small increments, or going extravagant with one long, epic getaway to some faraway location. </p><p>But there’s another option, too, that allows you a total change of pace — and time to lounge on a private island — while still getting you back to your desk Monday morning. And no, you don't have to be a yacht-owning billionaire.</p><p>After an expansive $90-million makeover, <a href="" target="_blank">Royal Caribbean’s Mariner of the Seas</a> is a cruise ship that offers those who are looking to stretch their time — and their dollar — a Caribbean retreat without missing a beat in their daily hustle. Departing from Miami on a Friday afternoon, the Mariner of the Seas sets sail on a three-night escape to the Bahamas, stopping in Nassau and on Royal Caribbean’s very own <a href="" target="_blank">private island, CocoCay</a>. It will have you back in port by Monday morning — allowing you to hop on a flight back to the office before your boss even steps through the door.</p><p>But it’s not just about the 72 hours you’ll spend feeling like you’ve been transported to an entirely new world inside the 1,000-foot vessel; it’s about the endless activities, both on board and off, and the surprisingly affordable price tag that comes with it.</p><p>“We’re making the conscious decision to really break away from the norm,” Jim Berra, chief marketing officer of Royal Caribbean International, told <em>Travel + Leisure</em>. “So whether you’re a foodie, a bar hopper, adventurist, or just want to kick back, we’ve got you covered.”</p><img alt="Royal Caribbeans renovated Mariner of the Seas cruise ship "src=""><p>The best part? You can experience a vacation tailored to fit your needs without breaking the bank or requesting a handful of days off. Cruise prices start at <a href="" target="_blank">$256 per person</a> for a three-night excursion.</p><p>“We’ve found that people are taking shorter and more frequent vacations,” Berra notes. And he’s not wrong — nowadays, it’s much more common to see your co-workers OOO email pop up for only a day or two, forgoing the week-long vacations that make coming back to work feel much like misery. And <a href="" target="_blank">recent studies have shown</a> taking multiple short trips throughout the year can actually be <a href="" target="_blank">better for your mental health</a> than one long one.</p><p>“With ships like Mariner, we’ve now packed the adventure travelers want in a short three-night weekend or four-night weekday vacation. Pair that with the same high-quality service and amenities you would expect from Royal Caribbean, and you’re definitely making the most of your three or four days away from the daily grind,” he said.</p><p>And the Mariner of the Seas does deliver on both adventure and relaxation. Before even embarking on the journey to the Bahamas, you’ll already switch into vacation mode as soon as you board the ship. Grab a fruity cocktail at any of the nine bars located on board and explore the hidden nooks and crannies on each of its 15 decks, where you’ll find cozy lounge areas, perfect for reading or sunbathing, and stellar 360-degree views of what will soon become endless crystal-blue ocean.</p><p>And, while you’re sipping on that strawberry daiquiri, consider a small splurge: the deluxe beverage package, which, at $55 per day, gets you unlimited amounts of beer, wine, and cocktails — a steal for anyone who’s looking to kick back and relax poolside for hours on end while the ship brings you closer to another kind of paradise, Royal Caribbean’s very own private island, CocoCay.</p><p>However, if imbibing isn’t your thing, consider using that spare change instead to upgrade to dining at one of the four specialty restaurants. <a href="" target="_blank">Jamie’s Italian</a>, Royal Caribbean’s restaurant with renowned chef Jamie Oliver, is worthy of the investment — if solely to nosh on its impressive charcuterie board and handmade pastas — as is <a href="" target="_blank">Izumi Sushi</a>, where your hibachi chef will double as your entertainment for the evening, tossing his cooking instruments effortlessly in the air while getting the whole table to cheer him on.</p><img alt="Flowrider attraction on the Royal Caribbean Mariner of the Seas "src=""><p>But don’t forget about the actual activities on board the Mariner of the Seas, of which there are plenty. For some, fun may come in the form of the <a href="" target="_blank">FlowRider</a>, a 40-foot-long surf simulator that boasts unbeatable views at the rear of the ship. While I lacked the grace and dexterity, I found myself enjoying watching others either succeeding or wiping out on their surfboards, all while being in the prime location to overlook an epic sunset on the seas. For others, fun might be found a few yards away at The Perfect Storm, a pair of three-story-high racing waterslides that will undoubtedly bring out your competitive side.</p><img alt="Hibachi dinner on the Royal Caribbean Mariner of the Seas "src=""><p>If you prefer staying dry, get your blood pumping at the <a href="" target="_blank">Sky Pad</a>, a virtual reality experience that’s heightened by having its guests strapped into a bungee trampoline, or a playful round of glow-in-the-dark laser tag with your crew. </p><img alt="Trampoline attraction on the Royal Caribbean Mariner of the Seas "src=""><p>But let’s be honest: as much as you could spend your days lounging on the top deck with your posse, working on absolutely nothing other than your tans, the biggest reason to hop aboard the Mariner of the Seas is because you can just as quickly hop off the next morning, finding yourself transported to a tropical island in less than 24 hours at CocoCay.</p><img alt="Cabanas at Coco Cay "src=""><p>By May 2019, CocoCay will have earned itself a veritable new name: <a href="" target="_blank">Perfect Day at CocoCay</a>. But until then, you’ll still get to experience a relaxing day on soft white sands overlooking Instagrammable Caribbean waters (equipped with a floating bar, I might add).</p><p>Once CocoCay’s transformation is complete, the island will have the perfect combination of both thrill and chill. Berra says the island will have amenities like the tallest waterslide in North America, a <a href="" target="_blank">helium balloon dubbed Up, Up and Away</a> that will go up 450 feet “to offer the best – and highest – vantage point in the Bahamas,” and a wave pool that will be coined as the Caribbean’s largest to date. </p><p>At the end of your “perfect day,” you’ll head back on the Mariner of the Seas with sand in your shoes, a slight buzz from the island’s addictive drinks, and perhaps a few new, welcome tan lines. And after your few days away from reality, you’ll wake up back in port in Miami, totally revitalized and ready to tackle a new work week. You could hop on a flight back home and kick things into high gear at the office, but taking a personal day to sustain that laid-back island vibe for just a little longer couldn’t hurt, would it? Don’t worry, we won’t tell.</p>
Categories: Travel

Why U.S. Airlines Are Raising Their Baggage Fees

Travel and Leisure - Sat, 09/22/2018 - 17:28
<p>This week American Airlines and <a href="" target="_blank">Delta Air Lines</a> joined United, <a href="" target="_blank">JetBlue</a>, Air Canada, and WestJet in hiking fees for checked baggage.</p><p>Southwest Airlines still allows passengers to travel with two checked bags for free, and CEO Gary Kelly says it has <a href="" target="_blank">no plans to begin charging bag fees</a>. </p><p>American Airlines announced Thursday that, starting with tickets purchased Sept. 21, fees to check bags will rise by $5 to $30 for the first checked bag and to $40 for the second bag for travel within the U.S. and to other North American and Caribbean destinations.</p><p>“This is the first time American has changed its domestic checked bag fees since 2010 and follows similar changes made by other airlines,” the carrier's official <a href="" target="_blank">statement says</a>.</p><p>American’s announcement comes on the heels of similar bag fee increases rolled out by Atlanta-based Delta Air Lines a day earlier and mirrors updates made in the past few weeks by United, JetBlue, Air Canada, and WestJet.</p><p>“We are making adjustments to our checked bag fees in select markets - most of which have not been changed for the past eight years,” said United spokeswoman Maddie King. “These changes allow us to continue investing in the overall customer experience in today’s marketplace.”</p><p>While the updated bag fees are pretty much the same across these airlines, there are some differences to watch out for, especially when it comes to excess, overweight, and oversize bags. It is also worth exploring the bag fee waivers each airline may offer with certain ticket bundles and to frequent fliers or certain credit card holders.</p><h2>Here’s what you need to know before you check a bag with these airlines.</h2><h3>American Airlines</h3><p>For tickets issued after Sept. 21 for travel in the U.S. and other North American and Caribbean destinations: $30 for the first checked bag, $40 for the second, $150 for the third, $200 for the fourth bag and above. Overweight bag charge (51 to 70 lbs.): $100. <a href="" target="_blank">See American Airlines' full baggage policy.</a></p><h3>Delta Air Lines</h3><p>Applies to tickets issued after Sept. 19. For travel within the U.S.: $30 for the first bag, $40 for the second, $150 for the third, $200 for the fourth. Between the U.S. and Canada; $30 for the first bag, $50 for the second, $150 for the third bag, $200 for the fourth bag and above. <a href="" target="_blank">See Delta Air Lines' full baggage policy.</a></p><h3>JetBlue</h3><p>For tickets issued after Aug. 27: $30 for the first bag; $40 for the second and $150 for the third bag and any additional bags. Overweight bag charge (51 to 99 lbs.): $150 (up from $100). <a href="" target="_blank">See JetBlue's full baggage policy.</a></p><h3>United Airlines</h3><p>For tickets purchased after Aug. 31 for flights to/from North America, the Caribbean and Central America: First checked bag: $30, second checked bag: $40 within the U.S., Puerto Rico, Virgin Islands, Caribbean and Central America; second checked bag to/from Canada: $50. Third bag and any additional: $150 (US and Canada). Overweight bags (51 to 70 lbs.): $100 extra. <a href="" target="_blank">See United Airlines' full baggage policy.</a></p><h3>Air Canada and WestJet</h3><p>Air Canada and WestJet, which both have plenty of flights to and from the United States, boosted checked bag fees as well and now have fees starting at $30 (up from $25) for the first bag and starting at $50 (up from $30) for the second bag. See <a href="" target="_blank">Air Canada's full baggage policy.</a> <a href="" target="_blank">See WestJet's full baggage policy.</a></p><h2>Why did airlines raise fees for checked bags and what can you do?</h2><p>Some airlines link rising bag fees to rising fuel prices. Others say raising baggage fees helps pay for improved amenities, such as free TV and movies, inside the cabins. JetBlue CEO Robin Hayes says it will <a href="" target="_blank">help the airline keep fares low</a>.</p><p>But the bottom line may just be, well, the bottom line: in 2017, 23 domestic airlines earned more than <a href="" target="_blank">$4.5 billion in baggage fees</a>, up $276 million from the year before.</p><p>Savvy travelers swear that <a href="" target="_blank">flying with just a carry-on bag</a> is not only possible, it is preferable for getting in and out of airports quickly and <a href="" target="_blank">avoiding round-trip checked bag fees</a> that can sometimes double the price of a trip.</p><p>To do this, organization is key. Start with our <a href="" target="_blank">editors' go-to carry-on checklist</a> and check out our tips for <a href="" target="_blank">lighter and smarter packing.</a> And believe us when we say <a href="" target="_blank">packing cubes are life-changing</a>.</p><p>If you can’t just travel with a carry-on, run some numbers (and factor in the convenience) to see if shipping your bags ahead with Fed Ex, UPS, or a luggage shipping company such as <a href="" target="_blank">Luggage Forward</a> or <a href="" target="_blank">Luggage Free</a> makes sense.</p>
Categories: Travel

Holiday Flight Prices Will Change Hundreds of Times in the Coming Months — Here's How to Find the Best Deal

Travel and Leisure - Sat, 09/22/2018 - 16:15
<p>If it seems like prices of <a href="" target="_blank">holiday flights</a> change every time you look, <a href="" target="_blank">new data from Hopper</a> is here to confirm you're not alone. </p><p>Hopper found that when it comes to Thanksgiving flights, prices will change a whopping 102 times between mid-September and Nov. 22, while flights between mid-September and Christmas will change prices at least 152 times. </p><p>The data is part of Hopper's <a href="" target="_blank">2018 Holiday Travel Index</a>, which utilized historic price information from as far back as 2014 to determine how often the price of these tickets change and when travelers should book for the best deals. </p><p>When it comes to <a href="" target="_blank">Thanksgiving flights</a>, Hopper found that flights on some of the most popular routes will see an even greater number of changes. </p><p>For example, flights to the most popular cities of Los Angeles and New York will change as many as 211 times and 203 times, respectively. Orlando flights will see price changes 171 times, while Fort Lauderdale will see 162 flight price changes, and Las Vegas will see 155.</p><p>The routes where passengers can expect to see the least number of changes in flight prices include Charlotte, Salt Lake City, St. Louis, Indianapolis, and Kansas City.</p><p>When it come to price, current round-trip averages for domestic Thanksgiving flights are at $288, dropping $100 in price since August. Looking at 2017 data, Hopper found that September tends to offer the best deals, though prices tend to stay fairly stable throughout October as well. </p><img alt="Booking by Halloween can help you avoid overpaying for your Thanksgiving flights. "src=""><p>For this reason, Hopper recommends booking by the week of Halloween to avoid price spikes in November, with the biggest savings offered on flights departing Thursday, Nov. 22 and returning Wed., Nov. 28.</p><img alt="Flying a few days before the Thanksgiving holiday will give you the biggest savings. "src=""><p>Meanwhile, flights to some of the most popular Christmas destinations will see ticket prices change more than 200 times. </p><p>Flights to Los Angeles will see the greatest number of changes at 282, followed by Fort Lauderdale at 261, Orlando at 210, Las Vegas at 205, and New York City at 200.</p><p>Meanwhile, the routes with the fewest price changes include Charlotte, Nashville, St. Louis, Oakland, and Hartford. </p><p>The current average for domestic Christmas flights is $320 round-trip, and Hopper found that mid-October brought the best deals in 2017.</p><img alt="Buying Christmas flights by Halloween can ensure you avoid price hikes on flights. "src=""><p>Hopper recommends booking Christmas flights before Thanksgiving flights as they tend to rise more steadily. Either way, travelers will want to have both flights booked by Halloween to avoid overpaying. </p><p>The biggest savings on Christmas flights can be found on trips departing Tuesday, Dec. 18 and returning Thursday, Jan. 4, though the next cheapest day to fly back for those who can’t stay through the new year falls on Dec. 27.</p><img alt="Flying a few days before the holiday and returning after the new year will bring travelers the greatest savings on flight prices. "src=""><p>While keeping up with all of these fluctuations can get tricky, setting up <a href="" target="_blank">airfare alerts</a> can help travelers make sure they don’t miss out on a great deal when it arrives.</p><p>This can be done through apps like <a href="" target="_blank">Hopper</a>, which will send notifications when a trip’s price drops to the best rate, and <a href="" target="_blank">DealRay</a>, which sends real-time alerts and notifications on sales or mistake fares. Price alerts can also be set up through websites like <a href=";hl=en" target="_blank">Google Flights</a>, <a href="" target="_blank">Momondo</a>, and <a href="" target="_blank">Skyscanner</a>.</p>
Categories: Travel

Cincinnati's New Brewery Trail Is Serving Up Craft Beer With a Side of History

Travel and Leisure - Sat, 09/22/2018 - 13:30
<p><a href="" target="_blank">Cincinnati</a> is paying tribute to its pre-Prohibition past.</p><p>On Friday, the city is opening the first phase of its <a href="" target="_blank">Brewing Heritage Trail</a>, an urban walking trail that invites visitors to learn about Cincinnati's brewing history by taking them through the Brewery District in the Over-the-Rhine neighborhood.</p><img alt="Steve Hampton, a local architect and the part-time executive director of the nonprofit Brewery District Community Urban Development Corp., stands near a sign showing the history of the brewery district, in Cincinnati. "src=""><p>This 1.09-mile segment invites visitors to learn about Cincinnati's fascinating brewing history as they navigate pre-Prohibition breweries — such as John Kauffman Brewing Co and F. &amp; J.A. Linck Brewery — as well as "iconic signage" and public art installations.</p><p>In the late 1800s, there were a collective <a href="" target="_blank">17 breweries in Over-the-Rhine and West End</a> thanks to the thousands of German immigrants in Cincinnati. The 18th Amendment, however, rung in the Prohibition era. While only a few of the breweries survived, the area lays claim to <a href="" target="_blank">one of the country's largest collections of 19th-century brewery architecture</a> to this day. The Trail, <a href="" target="_blank">in the works since 2011</a>, is just one of many projects that the <a href="" target="_blank">Brewery District Community Urban Redevelopment Corporation</a> (CURC) has initiated to "preserve, restore, and redevelop" the <a href="" target="_blank">city's history and Italianate architecture</a>.</p><p>"The Trail tells more than just how much we made and how much we drank; it is the story of American immigration, ingenuity, ethnic conflict, industrialization, the labor struggle ... and the impact of a constitutional amendment on local economies told through the production and consumption of a single commodity — beer," executive director Steven Hampton told <a href="" target="_blank"></a>.</p><p>As you walk through the neighborhood, you can download the free <a href="" target="_blank">Brewing Heritage Trail app</a> to take yourself on a self-guided audio tour of the area and to learn more about the city's history via photos, stories, and augmented reality experiences.</p><img alt="Findlay Market Biergaten sponsored by Christian Moerlein Brewing "src=""><p>For a more unique experience, you can also <a href="" target="_blank">sign up for any number of guided tours</a>, some of which grant special access to sections of the trail not open to the general public, like the subterranean lagering cellars of historic breweries.</p><p>Although you will be touring a city once heavily influenced by Prohibition, you will find no shortage of beer on several of these tours.</p><p>The Brunch, Beer, &amp; Breweries tour, for example, invites you to ride a streetcar through the Brewery District and sip on local craft beer at the award-winning <a href="" target="_blank">Moerlein Lager House</a> (while you brunch your way through the brewpub's rich history, of course). Likewise, the Heritage &amp; Hops walking and bus tour takes you to three breweries for generous samples of craft beer.</p><p>And if you haven't had your fill of beer by the end of your tour, just know: <a href="" target="_blank">BrewDog's beer hotel</a> is only a two-hour drive away.</p><p><em>The Brewing Heritage Trail opens on Friday, September 21; sign up for a guided tour on their <a href="" target="_blank">website</a>.</em></p>
Categories: Travel

China Is Opening the 'World's First Underground Hotel' Inside an Abandoned Quarry

Travel and Leisure - Sat, 09/22/2018 - 13:02
<p>Some of the world’s most impressive hotel room views will be underground, starting in October.</p><p>The <a href="" target="_blank">Intercontinental Shanghai Wonderland</a>, slated to open next month, will be unique for many reasons. But the most-eye popping is that <a href="" target="_blank">16 of the hotel’s 18 floors will technically be underground.</a></p><p>The hotel was built into the side of the abandoned Shenkeng Quarry in Songjiang, about 22 miles outside of <a href="" target="_blank">Shanghai</a>. It plummets 300 feet down to a pool of water at the bottom of the quarry.</p><p>The hotel will have 337 guest rooms and suites. Guests will be able to take in the impressive panoramic views from their room’s rounded balconies.</p><p>In addition to being an impressive architectural feat, the building is notable for its environmental impact. It creates its own power — including heat and lighting — through geothermal and solar energy, and the roof is covered in greenery.</p><p>Water runs throughout the structure. A waterfall, built into the center of the hotel, pours into the pool at the bottom of the quarry. The two bottommost floors are built completely underwater. One floor will have guest rooms and a restaurant, both facing an underwater aquarium. At the bottom of the building, there’s a sports complex that includes a swimming pool.</p><p>The quarry is located close to tourist attractions like the Chenshan Botanic Gardens and Sheshan National Park.</p><p>It took a team of more than 5,000 architects, engineers, designers and workers more than 10 years to complete the hotel.</p><p>Room rates are not yet available — but it is unlikely to come cheap. The hotel will be a five-star luxury experience when it opens in October.</p>
Categories: Travel

We Found Meghan Markle’s Favorite Leather Travel Case — and It's 25% Off Right Now

Travel and Leisure - Sat, 09/22/2018 - 11:51
<p>Meghan Markle is now officially the Duchess of Sussex. But that doesn’t mean the former<em> Suits</em> actress will spend her days sitting in <a href="" target="_blank">Nottingham Cottage</a> drinking tea and petting corgis. Judging by her and Prince Harry’s love for <a href="" target="_blank">traveling to faraway places</a>, the couple will continue to rack up miles together.</p><p>And we know Markle has traveling in style without sacrificing functionality down to an art. The recently wedded royal — who was also a globetrotting lifestyle blogger for a while — knows a thing or two about <a href="" target="_blank">travel gear and accessories</a>, and never leaves home without her essentials. One of them happens to be an extremely <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank">stylish leather case</a> by English brand Stow, which Markle has been photographed carrying multiple times.</p><p> </p><p>The zippered leather case has slots and pockets for your passport, credit cards, and boarding pass, as well as a foldaway plug set and a 32GB leather memory stick. There's an extra pocket that's perfect for other cables or chargers and a loop for headphones. The newest version includes a power bank to keep your devices charged on the go. You can even add an embossed monogram for free, making for a great <a href="" target="_blank">personalized gift idea</a>. </p><p>While Markle’s case is in Amber Orange, you can choose from many other color options like <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank">Obsidian Black</a>, <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank">Sapphire Blue</a>, <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank">Emerald Green</a>, and <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank">Spring Pink</a>.</p><h2>Stow Leather Zipper 'First Class' Tech Case</h2><img alt="leather travel case "src=""><p>To buy: <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank"></a>, $398 with discount code AUTUMN (originally $530)</p>
Categories: Travel

Your iPhone Has a Secret Texting Feature You Might Not Know About (Video)

Travel and Leisure - Sat, 09/22/2018 - 11:15
<p>If you’ve ever wished there was a quicker way to easily edit your texts and notes when using your <a href="" target="_blank">Apple devices</a>, we’ve got good news for you.</p><p>Apple recently released its latest version of software available for its mobile devices and <a href="" target="_blank">iPads</a> on Monday, and one of the most handy tools you can tap into through the new<a href="" target="_blank"> iOS 12</a> is its text editing shortcut.</p><p>With <a href="" target="_blank">iOS 12</a>, Apple users who have devices that don’t automatically come with <a href="" target="_blank">3D Touch</a> capability will now be able to utilize the feature.</p><p>For those not familiar with the 3D Touch capability, the feature allows users to quickly turn their devices keyboard into a trackpad to easily move the input cursor to points of interest when editing text.</p><p>While it is already available on the iPhone 6S and later devices like the iPhone 7, iPhone 7S, the iPhone 8, and iPhone XS, iOS 12 will now make it available across iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch devices regardless of their screen capability.</p><p>The feature works when Apple’s stock keyboard is open. Tap on the text if the keyboard is not immediately visible and once the keyboard opens, simply tap on the space bar and hold for a few moments. After a few moments, the keyboard will disappear to signal trackpad mode, letting users control the cursor with their finger to whatever location in the text they want. </p><p>Releasing the finger at the preferred location will leave the cursor at that stop for edits.</p><p>For devices that already have 3D Touch, users won’t need to wait for the keyboard to switch into cursor mode. Rather, applying force directly to the screen where the keyboard is located will instantly trigger the switch to trackpad mode, with the ability to highlight entire sentences and even paragraphs without needing to release your finger.</p><p>The new iOS 12 is available on devices that run on iOS 11, bringing the new capability to older models like the iPhone 5S, and the new iPhone XR arriving in October.</p>
Categories: Travel

The First Full Day of Fall Will End With a Spectacular Harvest Moon (Video)

Travel and Leisure - Sat, 09/22/2018 - 11:00
<p>Is September's Harvest Moon the most famous full moon of the year? OK, so it's no <a href="" target="_blank">Super Blue Blood Moon Eclipse</a>, but as the full moon that occurs closest to the <a href="" target="_blank">fall equinox</a>, there's something special about our shining satellite on Sunday and Monday.</p><p>So <a href="" target="_blank">what is a Harvest Moon</a> and how can you see it? Here's everything you need to know.</p><h2>Why is September's full moon called the Harvest Moon?</h2><p>It’s all about timing. Every 27.3 days, moon's orbit puts Earth between it and the sun, which makes the moon's surface as fully illuminated as possible, as seen from Earth. The Harvest Moon’s intense brightness means that farmers have historically been able to work in the fields late at night gathering in September’s crops.</p><p>For the same reason the Harvest Moon has also been called the Corn Moon. However, it's not just about the brightness of the moon, but when it rises and sets. During a full moon — and for a day or so on either side — our satellite rises above the eastern horizon close to when the sun sets in the west, and shines all night, sinking in the west as the sun rises in the east the next morning.</p><h2>When is the Harvest Moon?</h2><p>The Harvest Moon 2018 occurs at precisely 10:53 p.m. EDT on Monday, Sept. 24, 2018. On that day, the sun will set in the west at New York City at 6:49 p.m. EDT and the Harvest Moon will rise in the east at 7:01 a.m. 99 percent illuminated. It will be visible all night long, setting at 07:03 a.m. EDT on Tuesday, September 25. The sun will rise at 06:46 a.m. EDT.</p><h2>How to watch the Harvest Moon</h2><p>Due to it being so close to the fall equinox, there are a couple of opportunities to catch the Harvest moon. Normally, the moon rises around 50 minutes later each day. However, in the week or so around the fall equinox, celestial mechanics shorten that to about half an hour. So you can just as easily look at an almost-full moon close to sunset on Sunday, Sept. 23, when it rises at 6:33 p.m. EDT, just before sunset at 6:51 p.m. EDT.</p><h2>How to see the Harvest Moon</h2><p>The Harvest Moon, as with all full moons, will be best observed at moonrise and moonset, which is close to sunset and sunrise, respectively. That's because once the moon has risen around 10 degrees above the horizon, it's way too bright to observe comfortably.</p><p>Although it is possible to get a moon filter for a small telescope, all full moons give off way too much glare to look at easily for long with the naked eye. However, before it rises above 10 degrees in the sky in the east, it's a pale orange color, which then turns to pale yellow before brightening. This is the best time to look at it, not only because you will be able to see more detail, but because it's so low in the sky it’s likely to be visible between buildings, or above mountains. It just makes for a more interesting sight. For the same reasons, a full moonset is also an arresting sight.</p><h2>When is the next full moon?</h2><p>The next full moon will occur on Wednesday, Oct. 24, 2018 at 12:45 p.m EDT, precisely 27.3 days after the Harvest Moon. October's full moon is often called the Hunter's Moon because Native Americans and European settlers used to use the moonlight to go hunting in preparation for a long winter. However, you may be tempted to look up at our satellite a few days before the Hunter's Moon because Saturday, Oct. 20, 2018 is <a href="" target="_blank">International Observe The Moon Night</a>.</p>
Categories: Travel

Scientists Find Ecstasy Makes Octopuses 'Gentle and Cuddly'

Travel and Leisure - Sat, 09/22/2018 - 10:51
<p>Would you like to cuddle an <a href="" target="_blank">octopus</a>? Turns out, all those tentacles really are great for hugging. At least, that is, when the party gets going.</p><p>A <a href="" target="_blank">study published in <i>Current Biology</i></a> in conjunction with Johns Hopkins University and the Marine Biological Laboratory shows that octopuses (<a href="" target="_blank">octopi?</a>), when given the party drug MDMA, also known as ecstasy or Molly, become much more “cuddly” than they are when sober.</p><p>Of course, one might assume that all creatures are more cuddly when taking ecstasy, since it drastically increases the activity of <a href="" target="_blank">serotonin and dopamine</a>, but the finding is a little more intriguing for octopuses. Unlike more socially inclined humans, the mighty octopus is a far more solitary creature — definitely not one for raving under strobe lights.</p><p>The experiment conducted, <a href="" target="_blank"><em>Fortune</em></a> reported, involved placing a “hand-sized” octopus in the center chamber of a three-chambered tank. On one side there was a colorful object and on the other was another octopus, protected inside a small cage.</p><p>Fascinatingly, while sober, the octopus spent more time with the object, but when it was given a mild dose with MDMA, it favored the other octopus.</p><p>According to <a href="" target="_blank">NPR</a>, scientists chose a specifically low dose of MDMA, since higher doses gave a profoundly different result. “They really didn't like it. They looked like they were freaked out," Johns Hopkins neuroscientist Gül Dölen told NPR. "They were just taking these postures of super hypervigilance. They would sit in the corner of the tank and stare at everything."</p><p>But at lower doses, Dölen told NPR that the octopus was “essentially hugging” the other one.</p><p>What does this mean for science (other than octopuses are cuter than we thought)? Judit Pungor, a neuroscientist at the University of Oregon, told NPR, “I was absolutely shocked that it had this effect...They have this huge complex brain that they've built, that has absolutely no business acting like ours does — but here they show that it does. The fact that they induced this very sort of gentle, cuddly behavior is really pretty fascinating.”</p><p>“It just shows us how much we don't know and how much there is out there to understand,” Zachary Mainen, a neuroscientist at the Champalimaud Centre for the Unknown in Portugal, told NPR.</p><p>Perhaps we’re not so different from the octopuses after all.</p><p>People on Twitter can certainly relate to these cooler, chiller cephalopods.</p><p> </p>
Categories: Travel

Enjoy 30% off Stays at a Charming Boutique Hotel in San Miguel de Allende

Travel and Leisure - Sat, 09/22/2018 - 10:50
<p><em>T+L launched Operation Vacation to inspire workers to use their days off and get away, offering exclusive travel discounts as incentive. For the latest deals on hotels, airfare, cruises, and trip packages, visit <a href="" target="_blank"></a></em></p><p>Mexico: 30 percent off <a href="" target="_blank">Casa 7 Blanca Hotel San Miguel de Allende</a>, a Moorish-inspired retreat in a centuries-old residence. </p><p>Treasures of San Miguel de Allende includes:</p>30 percent off a minimum of two nights in a suite Breakfast à la carte for two15 percent off food and beverage Early check-in and late check-out depending on availability<p>Original Price: From $448 per night</p><p><strong>T+L Price:</strong> From $314 per night; book by October 30 for travel through January 31, 2019. </p><p>Booking details: Book by telephone 52 (415) 6881438, e-mail <a href=""></a> or book directly through the <a href="">website </a>with code TRAVEL + LEISURE</p>
Categories: Travel

Hawaii Volcanoes National Park Is Reopening This Weekend, but It Won't Be Quite the Same

Travel and Leisure - Sat, 09/22/2018 - 08:14
<p>After months of anticipation, <a href="" target="_blank">Hawaiʻi Volcanoes National Park</a> will <a href="" target="_blank">reopen</a> to the public on Saturday, Sept. 22.</p><p>While the park is reopening many trails and key attractions, it will be missing one of the elements that has made it so famous over the years — its lava.</p><p>Most of the park closed on Friday, May 11 as a result of <a href="" target="_blank">eruptions and seismic activity</a> at the summit of Kīlauea. The natural disaster depleted the lava lake inside the Halemaʻumaʻu Crater and the lava flows from Puʻu ʻŌʻō. </p><p>"There is <a href="" target="_blank">no molten lava</a> or lava glow to see anywhere in or out of the park," the park's website warns.</p><p>The changes mark the first time in years the park has no lava for visitors to see, <a href="" target="_blank">according to park representatives</a>, though there are several <a href="" target="_blank">famed trails and locations</a> open to explore again.</p><p>These include the Crater Rim Trail between Volcano House and the Kilauea Military Camp, the Sulphur Banks Trail, the Kīlauea Iki Overlook, Devastation Trail, portions of the Crater Rim Drive to the Keanakāko'i Crater (open to pedestrians and cyclists only), the Mauna Loa Road, the Chain of Craters Road, sections of the Escape Road from Highway 11, the Kīlauea Visitor Center, and the Hawaii Pacific Parks Association store at the visitor center.</p><p>Sept. 22 also marks <a href="" target="_blank">National Public Lands Day</a>, meaning visitors will get free entrance into the park. </p><p>Those planning to visit will want to head to the park early (opening time is 10 a.m.), as representatives say to expect heavy traffic and lengthier lines as parking around the summit has been reduced by a third. </p><p>Visitors should use <a href="" target="_blank">safety precautions</a> including avoiding hiking at night or on closed trails, hiking with at least one other person as the park is dotted with open holes that can often be covered by vegetation, staying away from cliff edges to avoid potential rockfalls in the still-fragile area, and wearing protective eyewear as whirlwinds of ash can still arise in locations like the Kaʻū Desert.</p><p>Visitors will also want to bring at least two quarts of drinking water per person, as the water in the park is still unsafe to drink at this time, along with snacks and a full tank of gas for those who are driving. </p>
Categories: Travel

Kate Middleton's Secret Weapon for Perfect Skin Is Already in Your Bathroom (Video)

Travel and Leisure - Sat, 09/22/2018 - 08:01
<p>Let’s be honest, we will all try just about anything to feel like we are getting the royal beauty treatment. Take, for example, how everyone on Earth will shell out their hard-earned cash for literally anything and everything Kate Middleton, the Duchess of Cambridge, touches.<br /><br />As the <em><a href="" target="_blank">Huffington Post</a></em> reported, a bottle of <a href=";tag=tlkatemiddletonwashcloth-20&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;creativeASIN=B000N94XPQ&amp;linkId=4a742f57d5ff820fa535d50b69b14f52" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Trilogy’s Rosehip oil</a>, Middleton's favorite beauty oil, sells every 20 seconds.</p><p>Or how about when <a href="" target="_blank">Emma Watson</a>, fashion icon and world-renowned celebrity/wizard, stole a piece of Middleton’s style after she stepped out in New York City wearing the Duchess’ favorite <a href=";subid=0&amp;offerid=465536.1&amp;type=10&amp;tmpid=2425&amp;;u1=TLIFEA1KateWashclothSLJun17" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Superga Classic Sneakers in white</a>.</p><p>And now we are sure one very old-school beauty product will fly off the shelves, as it’s been revealed that the Duchess of Cambridge washes her face every single day and night with… <a href=";tag=tlkatemiddletonwashcloth-20&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;creativeASIN=B01HFASA4U&amp;linkId=fb087130d731747b3a5e43486cf7a60e" target="_blank">a simple washcloth</a>.</p><p>Arabella Preston, Kate Middleton’s makeup artist, recently told <em><a href="" target="_blank">The Cut</a></em> that the future Queen Consort of England is “all about the flannel,” which is the British term for terrycloth.</p><p>Preston explained that a <a href=";tag=tlkatemiddletonwashcloth-20&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;creativeASIN=B01HFASA4U&amp;linkId=fb087130d731747b3a5e43486cf7a60e" target="_blank">washcloth</a> is an essential part cleansing as it ensures all dirt and oil will be wiped away and is far more gentle on your face than a motorized cleanser. Moreover, Preston said, it will also gently exfoliate as you cleanse.</p><p>Kathleen Hou, beauty editor at<em> <a href="" target="_blank">The Cut</a></em>, explained that in order to reap the full benefits of the washcloth method, you should “give yourself a gentle massage and rub with damp hands, and even the densest caking of makeup and mascara will easily dissolve.” She added that at no point do you actually splash your face with water, but instead, wet the washcloth then wipe your face clean. And voila! You’re now a princess too... at least in your own bathroom.</p>
Categories: Travel

Why the First Weekend of Fall Is One of the Best Times to See the Northern Lights

Travel and Leisure - Sat, 09/22/2018 - 07:32
<p>We all know that fall is all about incredible reds, yellows, and oranges as <a href="" target="_blank">deciduous trees shed their leaves</a>, but they're not the only source of color this season. This Saturday sees the <a href="" target="_blank">beginning of fall in the northern hemisphere</a>. It's the point halfway between the summer solstice and the winter solstice, and when the day and night are of almost identical length. This is the autumn equinox –– equal night –– but how do you celebrate it? By looking for the <a href="" target="_blank">Northern Lights</a>, that's how.</p><p>Known to be stronger around the autumn equinox because of the planet's position and angle in relation to the sun, those in the border areas between the U.S. and Canada, as well as Northern Canada, Alaska, Scandinavia, and Northern Russia, should all look skywards this week and next in hope of a strong display of aurora borealis.</p><h2>When is the autumn equinox?</h2><p>Autumn equinox 2018 occurs on Sept. 22 at 9:54 p.m. EDT/6:54 p.m. PDT, which marks the moment that the center of the sun crosses the celestial equator. However, it's not a visual spectacle (indeed, the sun won't even be visible to half of the planet), so the possibility of strong aurora provides something to look out for to mark the change in the seasons.</p><h2>What is the autumn equinox?</h2><p>Also known as the southward equinox, this is when the sun crosses the celestial equator to create days and nights of virtually equal length for a short period. It happens every year between Sept. 21 and 24. It occurs because Earth orbits the sun, and rotates on a tilted axis. At the autumn equinox (and also at the spring equinox) that axis is perpendicular to the sun, and that has huge consequences for the likelihood of Northern Lights displays.</p><h2>Why are Northern Lights stronger at autumn equinox?</h2><p>"It's well known that the Northern Lights are stronger around the equinoxes, and it makes sense because of the geometry of Earth and the fact that the Earth is tilted," said Dr. Melanie Windridge, author of "<a href="" target="_blank">Aurora: In Search of the Northern Lights</a>."</p><p>She explains that the Northern Lights are caused by the solar wind hitting the Earth and charged particles getting caught up in the field lines of the Earth's magnetic field, but she stresses that there's a reason strong displays of aurora don’t occur constantly.</p><p>"This process only happens when the solar wind's magnetic field is facing southward relative to the Earth, and because of the way the Earth is tilted, that’s more likely at equinoxes," she said. "There's basically more chance of getting a good connection between the solar wind and Earth during the equinoxes."</p><p>It means more frequent and stronger Northern Lights displays around both the autumn equinox and the vernal (spring) equinox, which will happen on March 20, 2019, when the sun crosses the celestial equator going north.</p><h2>What is the celestial equator?</h2><p>It's an abstract projection of the Earth's equator in the night sky, essentially an imaginary circle on the celestial sphere that divides the night sky into two distinctive parts, north and south. You've heard of Polaris, the North Star, right? You can see it by looking north from anywhere in the northern hemisphere because it sits directly above the Earth's North Pole. Polaris sits above the North Celestial Pole, and the celestial equator sits above Earth's actual equator.</p><h2>How to see the Northern Lights in 2018</h2><p>It's usually imperative to head to northern latitudes to the Arctic Circle, between about 64° to 70° North latitude, anytime between September and April when there's lot of darkness. That means heading to Alaska, northern Canada, Greenland, Iceland, Norway, Sweden, Finland or northern Russia. It's also best to avoid the full moon and any light pollution to improve their brightness.</p><p>However, during a particular powerful display, the Northern Lights can shift south significantly and can even be visible around the U.S.-Canada border. For example, as part of their short-film series "More Than Just Parks," filmmakers Will &amp; Jim Pattiz captured a magnificent display of Northern Lights in the remote <a href="" target="_blank">Voyageurs National Park</a>, Minnesota.</p><p>So look to the northern horizon this weekend, and for the next week or so, and you just might see the Northern Lights make a special seasonal appearance.</p>
Categories: Travel

Dogs Now Have Their Own Instagram Pop-up Because Humans Can't Have All the Fun

Travel and Leisure - Fri, 09/21/2018 - 16:57
<p>Move over, <a href="" target="_blank">puppy cafés</a>. A new trend in indulging in adorable, fuzzy pooches has arrived.</p><p>As much as we love Instagram-friendly pop-ups like <a href="" target="_blank">The Color Factory</a> and <a href="" target="_blank">The Rosé Mansion</a>, they're missing one element that makes pretty much anything instantly amazing: dogs.</p><p>Luckily, pups are finally getting their time in the spotlight with a brand new pop-up museum in New York City called <a href="" target="_blank">Human’s Best Friend</a>.</p><p>According to <em><a href="" target="_blank">Gothamist</a></em>, Human’s Best Friend, located in the West Village, is offering dog owners and the dog-obsessed the opportunity to immerse themselves in a fun, interactive, and totally Instagram-friendly experience with their four-legged friends.</p><img alt="Human's Best Friend puppy pop-up in New York "src=""><p>The exhibit features eight themed rooms with 20 photo-ops spread throughout. Room themes include "Lady and the Tramp," as well as a fun toy pit, a bone yard, and a water bowl room. Pet supply company Petmate donated over 10,000 balls to the exhibit, according to <em>Gothamist</em>, and there are tons of events, giveaways (like free BarkBoxes), and treats involved.</p><img alt="Toys at the Human's Best Friend dog popup event "src=""><p>The best part? It’s a fun, off-leash activity that you can bring your dog to. According to the exhibit website, as long as your dog is physically and emotionally fit to happily play and experience the space (even with other dogs and people present), then they are welcome to come along.</p><img alt="Dog and polka dots "src=""><p>But if you don’t have a dog, that’s OK too. The exhibit is working with 12 local animal rescues so you can play with adoptable dogs in the space. Second Chance Rescue, Bideawee, Badass Brooklyn Rescues, and Rescue Dogs Rock NYC are just some of the participants. And yes, if you happen to find a best friend along the way, you are encouraged to adopt them – after all, that’s what Human’s Best Friend’s co-creator, Brian Tovar, created the exhibit for.</p><p>“So many dogs need our help,” he told <em>Gothamist</em>. “And then [it's about] having a space where human and best friend can enhance their bonds in an Instagrammable environment.”</p><p>Tickets are $29 for one human and $39 for one human plus their furry best friend. At the moment, the exhibit is only planned be open until Nov. 12, but Tovar mentioned they hope to extend their stay through the holidays.</p><p>More information can be found on the <a href="" target="_blank">Human’s Best Friend website</a>.</p>
Categories: Travel

The Royal Family’s Astrological Signs Are Eerily Accurate

Travel and Leisure - Fri, 09/21/2018 - 13:01
<p>At this point, you may think you’re a royal family expert. Between <a href="" target="_blank">Meghan and Harry’s wedding</a> and <a href="" target="_blank">William and Kate’s children</a> grabbing all the headlines, the family certainly seems to be everywhere. But, did you know that the Queen and Prince Charles are doomed to never get along? It’s true because it’s written in the stars.* Here’s what else we know about the royal family’s zodiac signs via <a href="" target="_blank"></a>.</p><h2>Queen Elizabeth: Taurus (and <a href="" target="_blank">Year of the Tiger</a>)</h2><p>Born on April 21, 1926, the Queen just barely falls into the Taurus category, which begins on April 20. She truly couldn’t be more representative of her star sign, though.</p><p>“Smart, ambitious, and trustworthy, Taurus is the anchor of the Zodiac,” <a href="" target="_blank"></a> explained. “Amazing friends, colleagues, and partners, Taureans value honesty above all else and are proud that their personal relationships tend to be drama free.” Her only potential downside is that Taurus is typically known for being “stubborn,” which is probably why nobody in the royal family is <a href="" target="_blank">allowed to eat garlic</a>.</p><h2>Prince Charles: Scorpio (and <a href="" target="_blank">Year of the Rat</a>)</h2><p>Born November 14, 1948, Charles falls firmly in the Scorpio category. And, like his mother, he perfectly fits the bill.</p><p>“Passionate, independent, and unafraid to blaze their own trail no matter what others think, Scorpios make a statement wherever they go,” <a href="" target="_blank"></a> said. “They love debates, aren't afraid of controversy, and won't back down from a debate. They also hate people who aren't genuine, and are all about being authentic—even if authentic isn't pretty.”</p><h2>Prince William: Cancer (and <a href="" target="_blank">Year of the Dog</a>)</h2><p>On June 21, 1982, Prince William entered the world, making him a Cancer. If you’re a member of the royal family you may not want to try to sneak anything by him because Cancers are reportedly psychic.</p><p>“Most Cancers have been called psychic at some point, and with good reason—Cancer can often intuit relationships, ideas, and motivations before anyone has actually spoken,” <a href="" target="_blank"></a> wrote. “That can make for challenging interactions with this sign—Cancer hates small talk, especially when it contains white lies (like saying, ‘How nice to see you!’ when it's clear that both parties would rather avoid each other). That's why social gatherings can be overwhelming for Cancers. They'd much rather spend time in small groups where everyone is on the same page.”</p><h2>Kate Middleton: Capricorn (and <a href="" target="_blank">Year of the Dog</a>)</h2><p>Kate Middleton was born on January 9, 1982, meaning she’s a Capricorn through and through.</p><p>“Smart, hardworking, and fully in control of their destiny, a Capricorn will <em>always</em> get what they set their mind to, in both personal and professional life—no excuses,” <a href="" target="_blank"></a> said, which makes sense for a smarty pants like Kate, who <a href="" target="_blank">graduated school with honors</a>. “Capricorns may get a reputation as stubborn, but they simply know what they want, and also know how they wish other people would behave.”</p><h2>Prince Harry: Virgo (and <a href="" target="_blank">Year of the Rat</a>)</h2><p>On September 15, 1984, Prince Harry joined the royal family. And that means he came in on the tail end of the Virgo sign. Though, at least from the outside, he looks to fit the sign quite nicely.</p><p>“Smart, sophisticated, and kind, Virgo gets the job done without complaining. Virgos are amazing friends, always there to lend a hand and also lend advice,” <a href="" target="_blank"></a> said, rather perfectly explaining the <a href="" target="_blank">charity-loving Harry</a>. “Practical Virgos are incredibly adept at big picture thinking, and planning out their life, their vacations, and what they're going to do today isn't a drag it makes them feel in control and secure.”</p><h2>Meghan Markle: Leo (and <a href="" target="_blank">Year of the Rooster</a>)</h2><p>Meghan, the newest member of the royal family, was born on August 4, 1981, making her a Leo.</p><p>“Bold, intelligent, warm, and courageous, fire sign Leo is a natural leader of the Zodiac, ready to blaze a trail, vanquish injustice, and make a name for themselves along the way,” said, nearly perfectly explaining Meghan’s place as the <a href="" target="_blank">change maker of the monarchy</a>. “Blessed with high self-esteem, Lions know that they possess enviable traits—and they're proud of them. They don't believe in false modesty and will be the first to praise themselves for a job well done. But Leo isn't self-aggrandizing or unwilling to roll up those sleeves and do the work: this sign knows that in order to be respected and admired, he or she needs to put in the effort worthy of a leader.”</p><p><em>*OK, so they probably aren’t doomed, they are mother and son after all. </em></p>
Categories: Travel

This New Booking Tool Makes it Easy to Take Back-to-back Cruises

Travel and Leisure - Fri, 09/21/2018 - 12:01
<p>Cruises can be a great way to see multiple countries in one journey, but sometimes travelers may find themselves wanting to take only a portion of the trip or combine the cruise with another to continue seeing even more locales.</p><p>While travelers have long had the option to book one-way itineraries or back-to-back cruises, planning these itineraries can often be difficult and time consuming when trying to fit specific stops into the trip.</p><p>That’s where <a href="" target="_blank">CruiseWire</a> comes in. The online travel agency has launched the world’s first cruise booking website dedicated to providing one-way cruise itineraries.</p><p>Through the platform’s <a href="" target="_blank">Back to Back Cruise Search</a> tool, travelers can easily put together the cruise of their dream by inputting the destinations they’re interested in and the dates of their journey to see which cruise lines have offerings matching their interests. </p><p>Searches can include details like the cruise line of interest, the year the ship was built, the number of layover days on the journey, and whether the ship includes amenities like a water slide. </p><p>Travelers can get even more detailed with the platform's <a href="" target="_blank">Custom World Cruise Search</a> feature, which searches cruises based on the specific cities (as opposed to searching the entire destination) of interest, creating customized itineraries that hit each of the requested stops. </p><p>In addition to its search features, CruiseWire also has a variety of recommended itineraries that range from trips in Alaska and Asia to journeys in the <a href="" target="_blank">Caribbean</a>, the <a href="" target="_blank">Mediterranean</a>, Hawaii, and Northern Europe. Those looking for a longer excursion can also check out the company's recommended <a href="" target="_blank">world cruises</a>, which stop at countries across the globe over a period of 90 to 110 days. </p><p>CruiseWire currently offers over 25,000 different cruises that sail to 121 countries with 11 cruise lines. These include Carnival Cruise Line, Disney Cruise Line, Norwegian Cruise Line, Princess Cruises, MSC Cruises, Seabourn Cruise Line, Cunard Cruise Line, Holland America Line, Costa Cruises, Celebrity Cruises, and Royal Caribbean International.</p>
Categories: Travel

How to Get the Perks of the New iPhone Camera on Your Current Phone

Travel and Leisure - Fri, 09/21/2018 - 11:15
<p>Just a few days ago, Apple announced the <a href="" target="_blank">latest generation of iPhones</a>: The <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank">iPhone XS, iPhone XS Max, and iPhone XR</a>. While each one is cool and comes with some new, unique perks, there’s one thing we were most excited to hear about: How good is the new camera?</p><p>Here’s everything we know about the new iPhone cameras, and how you can get these features without having to shell out <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank">$749–$1,099 for a new device</a>.</p><h2>Portrait mode is about to get a whole lot better.</h2><p>Last year, when Apple unveiled the iPhone X and the iPhone 8 Plus, people were excited to learn about a new feature called “portrait mode.” What it does is mimic the actions of the aperture on a DSLR camera, giving that cool, highly sought after, out-of-focus background that lets the subject shine. It also mimics the black-and-white lighting of a portrait studio. Now, the new iPhones are upgrading portrait mode to give better control to the user.</p><p>According to <a href="" target="_blank"><i>Business Insider</i></a><i>,</i> the new camera will generate a mask when it detects a person in the frame. That means the phone can now do a significantly better job separating the subject from the background for portrait mode shots.</p><h2>You can now edit RAW images on the go.</h2><p>The bane of every professional photographer’s existence has been the phone’s inability to import RAW images. This meant that any images shot in the field couldn’t be downloaded and edited directly on the phone using apps like <a href="" target="_blank">Lightroom or Snapseed</a>. But now, thanks to the Apple gods, they can.</p><p>If a phone has an A9 chip or later, <i>Business Insider</i> shared, you can edit RAW on both the iPhone or iPad. This, Apple says, makes it "easier than ever" to import photos and videos to your device.</p><h2>The Photos App will now come with suggested edits.</h2><p>For everyone hoping to up their iPhone photography game, the new iPhone Photo App will be a big help.</p><p>In the updated Photo App, users will find several new features, including a “<a href="" target="_blank">For You</a>” tab, where Apple suggests who to share images with based on facial recognition. It also comes with new "Effect Suggestions." This will show users different suggested effects (such as color alterations, lighting, and contour) to enhance their photographs. </p><h2>You don’t need to buy the latest gadget to get most of these upgrades.</h2><p>Yes, the new phones come with all this and more, but as long as you have an iPhone 8 Plus or later, you can simply download the <a href="" target="_blank">iOS 12 update</a> for free and you should be able to access <a href="" target="_blank">most of these upgrades</a>. Plus, iOS 12 comes with other perks, like <a href="" target="_blank">less annoying notifications</a>. After all, you don't need people bothering you from back home while you’re <a href="" target="_blank">busy perfecting your travel photography skills</a>.</p>
Categories: Travel

Getting Away for a 3-day Weekend Could Make You Happier Than a Long Vacation

Travel and Leisure - Fri, 09/21/2018 - 11:01
<p>Next time you’re planning a vacation you may want to think small. As in <a href="" target="_blank">three-day weekend</a> small.</p><p>According to Jonathan Alpert, a Manhattan-based psychotherapist and well-being expert, taking just one Friday or Monday off of work can do just as much for your mental health as taking off an entire week.</p><p>“Clients often tell me they want to go as far away as possible for as long as possible,” he recently told <a href="" target="_blank">NBC</a>. “But then it takes a day to get to their destination, they run into issues accessing their email in a remote place, and inevitably, they get so stressed planning it, that they aren’t able to truly disconnect.”</p><p>Though past research suggested that eight days is the <a href="" target="_blank">optimal time length for a vacation</a>, that amount of time off a year can be unreasonable for many people. Especially when you consider the average American receives just <a href="" target="_blank">10 paid vacation days a year</a>.</p><p>And, as Alpert additionally explained, using that much time off is akin to trying to “binge sleep” on the weekends to catch up on your rest. This, he said, will do little for your health, just like a long vacation won’t fix all your woes in eight days. Instead, it’s best to opt for several short vacations to help you feel more restored all year long.</p><p>It appears people are already unintentionally heeding this excellent advice. In a 2017 survey by <a href="" target="_blank">Enterprise Rent-A-Car</a>, 85 percent of Americans said they were planning to take a three-day trip in 2018, NBC<i> </i>reported. Almost half of the respondents cited “reducing stress” as to why they wanted a three-day escape.</p><p>Indeed, a three-day vacation can make you feel less stressed because they can be far less stressful to plan, cheaper than a long getaway, easier to execute, and will give you more vacations to look forward to.</p><p>But, where should you go on a three-day journey? Check out our guide to everything <a href="" target="_blank">three-day weekend</a> related, including where to go, where to stay, and what to do to maximize those 72 hours of bliss.</p>
Categories: Travel

How to Get Into More Than 1,400 Museums for Free on Saturday

Travel and Leisure - Fri, 09/21/2018 - 10:46
<p>Museums and cultural attractions top many “must see” lists for visitors arriving in a new city, but <a href="" target="_blank">admission fees</a> that can top $25 a person can keep families and thrifty travelers away. <em>Smithsonian</em> magazine’s 14th annual Museum Day, however, makes museum-going a budget-friendly activity.</p><p>On Saturday, September 22, more than 1,400 museums, zoos, science centers and other attractions across the country will be waiving admission fees for guests who arrive with a downloaded free ticket.</p><p>“Museum Day allows museums nationwide to emulate the spirit of the Smithsonian Institution’s Washington, D.C.-based facilities, which offer free admission every day,” said Amy Wilkins, Chief Revenue Officer at Smithsonian Media. “For museums that rely on admission fees, the annual event is an opportunity to gain visibility and be a part of something bigger than their museum. It represents a national commitment to access, equity and inclusion.”</p><p>On Museum Day only one free pass (for you and a guest) will be issued per email address. So choose carefully, buddy up, or (we’ll deny we mentioned it) use more than one email account to make the most of your free museum visits.</p><p>The full list of participating venues can be found <a href="" target="_blank">on <em>Smithsonian's</em> webiste</a>, and includes everything from Seattle’s <a href="" target="_blank">Museum of Pop Culture</a> (regular adult admission: $28) and the <a href="" target="_blank">Autry Museum of the American West</a> in Los Angeles (regular adult admission: $14) to the Fort Worth Museum of Science and History (regular adult admission: $16), the <a href="" target="_blank">Ice House Museum</a> in Cedar Falls, Iowa (regular adult admission: $5 and the <a href="" target="_blank">Lucille Ball Desi Arnez Museum</a> in Jamestown, New York (regular adult admission: $16).</p><p>This year’s Museum Day theme is “Women Making History” and many museums will be highlighting certain exhibits and hosting events that honor women who are or were trailblazers in arts, sciences, innovation and culture.</p><p>In New York City, Museum Day falls during the four day Space &amp; Science Festival at the <a href="" target="_blank">Intrepid Sea, Air &amp; Space Museum</a> (regular adult admission: $33, $19 for NYC residents). On September 22, the festival will offer a mixed reality Microsoft HoloLens experience narrated by former NASA astronaut Mae Jemison about the role and contributions (so far) of women in space.</p><p>Also on Saturday, the <a href="" target="_blank">Whaling Museum &amp; Education Center</a> in Cold Spring Harbor, New York (regular adult admission: $6) debuts “Heroines at the Helm,” an exhibit celebrating women who affect change in male-defined work, from 19th-century whaling wives to contemporary female artists.</p><p>“The whaling industry was unquestionably a man's world,” said Nomi Dayan, the museum’s executive director, “The fascinating and diverse experiences of pioneering whaling wives are a little-known but significant aspect of our regional maritime heritage. The courage and endurance of these women are a source of inspiration for social hurdles present today."</p><p>At the <a href="" target="_blank">San Diego Air &amp; Space Museum</a> (regular adult admission: $19.95) the “American Women of Flight,” exhibit honors contributions to the world of aviation by notable aviatrixes such as Bessie Coleman, Jacqueline Cochran, Fran Bera, Sally Ride and many others.</p><p>In Alexandria, Virginia, the <a href="" target="_blank">National Inventors Hall of Fame</a> (regular admission: free) shares the story of women inventors such as Beulah Louise Henry (known as “Lady Edison”), who received a patent for a vacuum-sealed ice cream freezer and American chemist Stephani Kwolek who invented the heart-resistant synthetic Kevlar fiber used in tires and bullet proof vests.</p><p>And at the <a href="" target="_blank">Western Heritage Museum and Lea County Cowboy Hall of Fame</a> in Hobbs, New Mexico (regular adult admission: $5), visitors can learn about the life of the first woman to serve on the United States Supreme Court in an exhibit titled “The Cowgirl Who Became a Justice: Sandra Day O'Connor” (on loan from the National Cowgirl Museum and Hall of Fame in Fort Worth, Texas).</p><p>This is the eighth year the Western Heritage Museum is participating in <em>Smithsonian</em> magazine’s Museum Day program and museum curator Erin Anderson has noticed that many visitors who take advantage of free admission on Museum Day are tourists traveling through the area.</p><p>“Participation is free and easy on the part of the institution and the patron,” said Anderson. “How can you go wrong?”</p>
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