What to Do in San Diego When It Rains

Travel and Leisure - Sun, 11/19/2017 - 16:00
<p>You’ve traveled to <a href="" target="_blank">San Diego</a> hoping for a sunny vacation full of <a href="" target="_blank">beaches</a>, outdoor parks and activities. But when you get there, it’s raining. What to do?</p><p>Luckily, there are plenty of indoor things to do in San Diego. Here are a few of them.</p><h2>Museums</h2><p>San Diego’s iconic Balboa Park is a great sunny day activity, and it’s also filled with indoor museums, making it a great place to also visit in the rain. There are 17 different museums inside the park, covering everything from art to science to history. Don’t miss the hidden <a href="" target="_blank">San Diego Model Railroad Museum</a> with exhibitions set up by several local model railroad clubs.</p><img alt="san diego california model train museum balboa park "src=""><p>Outside the park, there's the <a href="" target="_blank">New Children's Museum</a> downtown, the <a href="" target="_blank">Birch Aquarium</a> in La Jolla, and the <a href="" target="_blank">Museum of Making Music</a> in Carlsbad.</p><h2>Head to a Theater</h2><p>San Diego has an often undervalued theater scene, with shows at <a href="" target="_blank">La Jolla Playhouse</a> or the <a href="" target="_blank">Old Globe</a> that regularly make it to Broadway. If movies are more your style, check out luxury movie theatres <a href="" target="_blank">The Lot</a> and <a href="" target="_blank">Cinépolis</a> where you can order gourmet food and watch a movie from a reclining chair.</p><img alt=" "src=""><h2>Bars With Games</h2><p>The bar <a href="" target="_blank">Coin-Op</a> had the revolutionary idea to combine cocktails with old school video games. You can sip a mule or old fashioned while playing pinball, Buck Hunter, X-Men or Packman at its locations in North Park or the Gaslamp.</p><img alt="san diego california coin op bar arcade "src=""><p>Also try <a href="" target="_blank">Coin Haus</a> in La Mesa. Other bars with classic games include Polite Provisions with its coloring books, Whistle Stop with board games and Triple Crown Pub with ping pong, shuffle board and foosball.</p><p><strong>Related:</strong> <a href="" target="_blank">The Best Beaches in California</a></p><p>The local science museum also runs a recurring event called <a href="" target="_blank">“Two Scientists Walk Into a Bar”</a> where you can chat with local scientists and ask them all your “I’ve always wondered why” questions.</p><h2>See a Concert</h2><p>You can also try catching a live show at venues such as <a href="" target="_blank">The Casbah</a>, Belly Up, House of Blues and <a href="" target="_blank">The Observatory North Park</a>. Bars such as Soda Bar, Tin Roof and Seven Grand also regularly have live music. Or try live piano bars like The Shout! House and <a href="" target="_blank">Red Fox Steakhouse</a> where you can sing along.</p><h2>Beer Tasting</h2><p>San Diego has more than 150 local craft breweries spread throughout the city, so you won’t run out of options. It even has companies like <a href="" target="_blank">Brew Hop</a> that serve as brewery tour guides.</p><img alt="san diego california coronado brewing company beer "src=""><p>Some breweries are bars that are extra great on a rainy day: <a href="" target="_blank">Stone Brewing</a> with multiple rooms to explore, <a href="" target="_blank">Safehouse</a> that combines craft beer and ramen noodles, and <a href="" target="_blank">Coronado Brewing</a> with a cozy fireplace.</p><h2>Outdoor Activities You Can Do Inside</h2><p>You can try rock climbing indoors at <a href="" target="_blank">Vertical Hold</a>, sky dive inside at <a href="" target="_blank">iFly San Diego</a>, and still get your swimming fix at indoor pools including the Copley-Price Family YMCA and The Plunge. Even though it might not make you think of a beach town, you can also try ice skating at the Westfield UTC mall.</p><h2>Shopping</h2><p>Many of San Diego’s malls are outdoors, but if you don’t mind dodging raindrops or using an umbrella you can dash from store to store. If you don’t want to get wet at all, the Westfield mall in Carlsbad is covered. Also try neighborhoods such as Normal Heights, La Jolla, and South Park for boutiques where you can shop indoors.</p><p>The newly-opened <a href="" target="_blank">Liberty Public Market</a> is also a good spot for shopping and eating from local restaurants and artisans.</p>
Categories: Travel

This German Train Concept Could Make Commuting Actually Fun

Travel and Leisure - Sun, 11/19/2017 - 13:31
<p>Germany has long been ahead of the curve when it comes to groundbreaking feats of engineering, and the country’s latest design concept — a <a href="" target="_blank">futuristic-looking train</a> from the state-owned railway company, <a href="" target="_blank">Deutsche Bahn</a> — is no exception.</p><p><strong>Related:</strong> <a href="" target="_blank">25 Enchanting Facts About Germany's Neuschwanstein Castle</a></p><p>Unveiled in Nuremburg <a href="" target="_blank">last week</a>, “Ideenzug,” which translates to “Idea Train,” is set to revolutionize train travel (especially morning commutes) with its modern seating, tech-forward amenities (think: TV’s and gaming consoles), and work areas with kitchenettes.</p><img alt="Future Concept - German Train "src=""><img alt="Future Concept - German Train "src=""><img alt="Future Concept - German Train "src=""><p>Other noteworthy offerings include built-in tablet stands, noise-canceling chairs, swivel seats, a “play paradise” for kids, and — perhaps the coolest feature of them all — a fitness studio with exercise equipment and virtual trainers (so you’ll really have no excuse to skip that a.m. workout). The concept reminds us of Airbus' idea for a <a href="" target="_blank">spinning class in a plane</a>.</p><img alt=" "src=""><p>Designed to compete with the impending reality of self-driving cars, the Idea Train has been in the works for years.</p><img alt="Future Concept - German Train "src=""><img alt="Future Concept - German Train "src=""><p>And while it’s still in the development phase, we’re confident that good old German engineering will have those wheels turning in no time.</p>
Categories: Travel

See the Secret Underground Chamber Where Michelangelo Drew on the Walls

Travel and Leisure - Sun, 11/19/2017 - 13:00
<p>For about two months in 1530, Michelangelo hid out in a secret chamber beneath the Medici Chapels in <a href="" target="_blank">Florence</a>’s Basilica di San Lorenzo, seeking refuge from his patrons, the powerful Medici family.</p><p><strong>Related:</strong> <a href="" target="_blank">Why November Is the Best Time to Travel to Italy</a></p><p>The Renaissance master had defied the family when he supported a popular revolt against their rule and, fearing punishment, had retreated to the tiny cell, where he made charcoal and chalk sketches on the wall in order to pass the time.</p><img alt="Secret Michelangelo Room Medici Chapel Basilica di San Lorenzo Florence Italy "src=""><p>The room and its awe-inspiring drawings — including details from his statue of “David” and figures from the Sistine Chapel — were discovered in 1975, when they were stumbled upon the director of the Medici Chapels museum, who was searching for a new exit route for visitors.</p><img alt=" "src=""><p>And now, according to a report by <a href="" target="_blank"><em>The Telegraph</em></a>, the “Michelangelo Room” will open to the public for the very first time in 2020.</p><p>“We’re working on making the secret room of Michelangelo accessible,” Paola D’Agostino, the director of the Bargello Museum (which manages the Medici Chapels) told <em>The Telegraph</em>. “There’s a plan under way to make the space safe for visitors. There’s a great deal to do.”</p><img alt="Secret Michelangelo Room Medici Chapel Basilica di San Lorenzo Florence Italy "src=""><p>In the meantime, art-lovers can take a virtual tour of the space <a href="" target="_blank">online</a> — and check out <a href="" target="_blank">T+L’s Definite Guide to Florence</a>, which covers the city’s best museums and galleries.</p>
Categories: Travel

There Are More Than 200 Holiday Treats Coming to Disney Parks This Season — Here's What You're Going to Have to Try

Travel and Leisure - Sun, 11/19/2017 - 12:31
<p>Prepare your appetite for the world’s most delicious advent calendar, because there are hundreds of festive flavors descending upon Disney's parks on both coasts.</p><p>Disneyland and Walt Disney World resort have added 200 festive foods to ring in the holiday season, and with favorites like praline cheesecake, spiced-rum punch, sticky toffee pudding, white chocolate hot cocoa, and pumpkin spice bread pudding among them, you’ll need a holiday miracle to make it through them all.</p><p><strong>Related:</strong> <a href="" target="_blank">How to Save Money at Walt Disney World</a></p><p>There are plenty of snowman-shaped and Santa hat-topped marshmallow pops, cookies, cupcakes and crispy treats on offer at Disney parks as usual, but this year, they’ve gone above and beyond. Disneyland, which is known for its limited-run, handmade candy canes, has added the quintessential Christmastime sweet into other famed park snacks this winter. Mint Julep Bar’s beloved beignets now come candy cane-dusted, while red churros served at Disney California Adventure’s Cozy Cone Motel are coated in the striped sweet.</p><img alt="Disney World Disneyland Resort Anaheim California Holiday Food Treats Dining "src=""><p>Fans of the park’s candy apples — which in November are Rocky Road-flavored and speckled with marshmallows — will enjoy the candy apple-flavored cotton candy sold throughout both Anaheim parks as well.</p><p>Make sure to get your mitts on Disney California Adventure’s new ice cream sandwich, too, which features red macaron cookies shaped like Santa’s mittens “holding” a scoop of mint chip, or hold out for the wackiest wintertime offering: gingerbread funnel cake fries served with whipped cream and candy crumbles at <a href="" target="_blank">Award Wieners</a>.</p><img alt="Disney World Disneyland Resort Anaheim California Holiday Food Treats Dining "src=""><p>Over at <a href="" target="_blank">Walt Disney World</a>, Magic Kingdom is baking Mickey-shaped cinnamon rolls coated in red and green icing along with other tasty treats including peppermint mousse-filled cupcakes. Hungry guests at Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party can even snack on exclusive items including a duo of white and dark chocolate yule logs, “The Nightmare Before Christmas” cake pops and the ticketed event’s brand new red velvet waffles, which offer a chocolatey dessert twist on the popular breakfast bite.</p><p><strong>Related:</strong> <a href="" target="_blank">Here’s How to Have Thanksgiving Dinner at Disney World and Disneyland</a></p><p>With the new Sunset Seasons Greetings nighttime projection show at Disney’s Hollywood Studios featuring characters from “Toy Story,” “Frozen,” and “The Muppets” atop Tower of Terror comes a line-up of special treats including stollen bites, apple cranberry cobbler and a red velvet whoopie pie shaped like a Christmas tree, complete with an icing “garland” and candied “ornaments.”</p><img alt=" "src=""><p>And, if that wasn’t enough, there are not one but two seasonal food festivals happening on each coast. Visitors can taste wintertime favorites from around the world when Epcot International Festival of the Holidays begins November 19, including Three Kings Bread from the Caribbean, Panettone alla Milanese from Italy and fried Buñuelo Navideño pastry from Mexico. Taste foreign fare from countries like China and Canada — or eat as though you’re browsing Europe’s famed Christmas markets with sauerbraten and spätzle in Germany and Austrian Sachertorte from the festival’s Cookie Nook holiday kitchen.</p><p><strong>Related:</strong> <a href="" target="_blank">The Price of a Disney World Ticket in 1971 Will Make You Want to Cry</a></p><p>An explosion of seasonal eats has also arrived at Disney California Adventure. The Anaheim park’s Festival of Holidays celebrates Christmas, Diwali, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa and ¡Viva Navidad! with comfort food like beef brisket and chicken mole alongside not-so-standard fare including chicken liver paté with cherry jam and pistachios, cookie butter and jelly cheesecake and horchata fudge.</p><img alt="Disney World Disneyland Resort Anaheim California Holiday Food Treats Dining "src=""><p>There are plenty of savory foods at both festivals — think beef short rib with mashed potatoes and roast turkey sliders with cranberry sauce on the West Coast and seared pork tenderloin in the East — but some in-park restaurants at Disneyland Resort are serving up seasonal feels as well, with Pacific Wharf Café’s turkey pot pie soup and bacon meatloaf at Flo’s V8 Café.</p><p>Still have room? Disney Parks have unleashed every kind of fun festive drink imaginable, from egg nog lattes at Disneyland Resort hotels to peppermint affogato at <a href="" target="_blank">Carthay Circle Restaurant</a> an alcoholic hot chocolate flight at Disney’s Hollywood Studios. Hit the dual food festivals for hot buttered rum, sparkling cranberry wine, bourbon cider or holiday sherbert punch, or pop by Schmoozies at Disney California Adventure for a pumpkin pie smoothie.</p><p>With this many candy cane-flavored, sugar-dusted, gingerbread-type treats, you won’t go wrong with any of them.</p>
Categories: Travel

How to Eat at Japan's Favorite Chain Restaurants Without Leaving the U.S.

Travel and Leisure - Sun, 11/19/2017 - 12:01
<p>In the blocks surrounding <a href="" target="_blank">New York City</a>'s Bryant Park, you'll find the beginnings of a food trail — one that winds through an unremarkable stretch of Midtown Manhattan, with its business hotels and gray condominiums, and towards the East River. Here, some of Japan's favorite casual restaurant chains are setting up shop. For many, it's their first attempt to break into the city's famously tough <a href="" target="_blank">restaurant scene</a>.</p><p>Brothers Anan and Toi Sugeno, the team behind just-opened ramen spot <a href="" target="_blank">Tonchin</a> at 36th and 5th, felt drawn to the city for many reasons. “We found some similarities between Tokyo and New York,” said Anan. “For example, in both Tokyo and New York, people usually go out to eat by taking trains or walking.” It’s also a city that, much like Tokyo, loves its food — and sets high standards for restaurants.</p><p>“We knew that New York is the most competitive, toughest place to be in the restaurant business,” Sugeno said. “But we still wanted to share Tonchin’s ramen.”</p><p><strong>Related:</strong> <a href="" target="_blank">Get a First Look at This Year’s Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree</a></p><p>Their father and uncle founded the first Tonchin restaurant in Tokyo back in 1992, and also own the Kaburaya izakaya brand and a chain of fish-market style restaurants called Marutomi Suisan. Over the past 25 years, the Tonchin locations have spread across Japan and into Shanghai and Taiwan. But New York, as any restaurateur knows, is a beast of its own. They were encouraged by the bevy of other Japanese chain restaurants making the leap to this most-challenging market.</p><p>“Seeing them opening and succeeding in New York made us want to give it a try,” said Sugeno. “We still believe that there is room for Japanese food culture to spread wider across New York City, and the world, because it’s about much more than just sushi.”</p><img alt="Tonchin Bar Interiors "src=""><p>New Yorkers already have plenty of homegrown options for Japanese fare, with interest growing in regional cuisines and non-sushi options. This year’s Michelin Guide <a href="" target="_blank">starred 16 Japanese restaurants</a> — the most of any city outside of Japan — including one kaiseki spot, one serving <em>shojin</em> Buddhist cuisine, one focusing on tempura, and even a yakitori specialist. Beloved grocery group Sunrise Mart is even opening a 20,000-square-foot Japanese food hall in Brooklyn’s Industry City next year.</p><p>So how does a foreign chain make its foray into a city with high standards, especially one already spoiled by Japanese options? The Sugeno brothers knew that ramen itself wasn’t particularly groundbreaking; though they’ve won over their hometown audience, Anan acknowledges that in New York City, “ramen has for so long been spotlighted by people from all over the world.” To set the stateside Tonchin location apart, the brothers worked “in collaboration with a local project team, who are very active at the front lines of the New York restaurant and design scene.”</p><img alt="Tonchin Interiors Dining Room "src=""><p>They’ll keep the ramen menu that made them famous — the Tokyo Tonkatsu, with a cloudy, fatty broth, is a signature item, but the nutty Spicy Tan Tan is an equally intoxicating option — while their custom staff uniforms, tableware, ceramics, and other design elements react to New York sensibilities. “We believe it’s going to be a place where locals can enjoy a new style of ramen restaurant,” said Sugeno. Wander the blocks around the restaurant, though, and you’ll notice that the historically dominant “Little Tokyo” section of the East Village has some competition.</p><p>Some have observed that Midtown East has been emerging as a small Japanese enclave, with restaurants and stores clustering in certain blocks. Perhaps the chains hope to cater to business travelers from back home, who would certainly be visiting the hotels and corporate headquarters in the area. The diplomatic significance of the neighborhood, home to the headquarters of the <a href="" target="_blank">Japan Society</a> and the <a href="" target="_blank">Japanese Consulate-General</a>, is also notable.</p><img alt=" "src=""><p>But of course, the chain restaurant diaspora isn’t constrained to Tonchin’s neighborhood. In Chelsea, there’s Naoki, a kaiseki spot from a huge Japanese restaurant group, and Zauo, the <a href="" target="_blank">much-hyped fish-for-your-dinner theme restaurant</a> opening its first U.S. location in February 2018.</p><p>The West Village saw the arrival of <em>iekei</em>-style ramen chain E.A.K. in May, and the East Village, already a Japanese food hub, recently debuted locations of several chains. Among them: Uogashi, an affordable sushi counter which opened in early 2017, and Dokodemo, a street food place known for its okonomiyaki and other griddled snacks that landed over the summer.</p><p>Brooklyn saw one of the hottest openings last year, with Japanese ramen chain Ichiran <a href="" target="_blank">setting up a giant location in Bushwick</a>; most of the buzz surrounded the proprietary <a href="" target="_blank">“flavor concentration booths,”</a> where individual diners are separated by partitions to let them slurp in silence.</p><p>Clearly, the bar is getting ever higher. “The more popular Japanese food becomes in the U.S., and the more new restaurants that open, the more American expectations of Japanese food will rise,” said Sugeno. New Yorkers, especially, “continue to explore Japanese cuisine, and can find new Japanese food that exceeds their expectations.”</p><p>Those looking to sample some of Japan’s favorite restaurants — no trans-Pacific plane ticket necessary — would do well to explore this increasingly delicious corner of Midtown East. Here’s a miniature food crawl of the other newcomers in the neighborhood:</p><img alt="Ootoya "src=""><h2>Ootoya</h2><p>One of the first and largest major Japanese chain restaurants to open in the States — they have over 100 locations in Tokyo alone — Ootoya followed up their 2012 Chelsea location with a second in Midtown soon after. This old standby lacks some of the bells and whistles of newer imports, garnering descriptions like "<a href="" target="_blank">populist, Cracker Barrel-style chain</a>” and “<a href="" target="_blank">think Applebee's — with raw fish</a>,” but it clearly set a standard for the chains that would continue to saturate the neighborhood over the years.</p><img alt="Ikinari Steak People Eating Steak "src=""><h2>Ikinari Steak</h2><p><a href="" target="_blank">Ikinari Steak</a>, with a 46th Street location planned for 2018, is most famous stateside for its quirky approach to seating: There isn't any. But customers, who flocked to its East Village location for the campy appeal of a standing-room-only steakhouse, found high quality meats within. <a href="" target="_blank">You might even get to sit down soon</a>.</p><img alt="Hide-Chan Ramen "src=""><h2>Hide-Chan</h2><p>Fukuoka-based chain <a href="" target="_blank">Hide-Chan</a>, which landed on 52nd Street back in 2010, expanded to a second location in Hell's Kitchen in September 2017. Owner Hideto Kawahara is a second-generation ramen master: His father founded Daruma Ramen in Fukuoka 50 years ago.</p><img alt="Ippudo "src=""><h2>Ippudo</h2><p>Growing steadily in Japan since its founding in 1985, ramen chain <a href="" target="_blank">Ippudo</a> first expanded internationally with its ever-popular East Village location, opened in 2008. A 5th Avenue location opened in October 2017, complementing the Midtown East outpost of their fast-casual Kuro-Obi concept, which has been slinging its special “takeaway ramen” in the <a href="" target="_blank">UrbanSpace Vanderbilt</a> food hall since early 2016.</p><img alt="Wokuni Sashimi Platter "src=""><h2>Wokuni</h2><p>Tokyo Ichiban Foods, which owns several brands in over 50 locations in Japan, made its foray into New York City last month with their refined izakaya concept. They're somehow serving affordable sushi and drinking fare, despite the fact that fish is flown in daily from the company's fish farm in Nagasaki. The bluefin tuna and king yellowtail you're eating were swimming in Japan mere hours earlier, but the <a href="" target="_blank">blowfish</a> raised in the same pools isn't available in <a href="" target="_blank">Wokuni</a>'s New York location (yet).</p><img alt="TsuruTonTan "src=""><h2>TsuruTonTan</h2><p>Like many successful Japanese chains, this restaurant specializes in one food, and does it extremely well. In this case, udon, a robust subgenre of Japanese cuisine with less of a U.S. following than ramen or sushi. <a href="" target="_blank">TsuruTonTan</a> caught the city's eye when it <a href="" target="_blank">took over the former Union Square Cafe space in August 2016</a>, and a second location is coming to the Rockefeller Center area in April 2018.</p>
Categories: Travel

Iconic Paris Bookshop Destroyed in Massive Fire

Travel and Leisure - Sun, 11/19/2017 - 11:01
<p>A massive fire engulfed the much beloved La Hune book shop in Paris on Friday afternoon.</p><p>Huge orange flames could be seen shooting out of the historic book shop, located in Paris’ Saint-Germain-des-Pres neighborhood as bystanders simply looked on in shock and horror.</p><p>“I came out of work on Rue de Rennes and just saw everyone looking up," eyewitness Lillian Wagner told <a href="" target="_blank"><i>The Local</i></a>. "I turned to see a few flames and many emergency vehicles.”</p><img alt=" "src=""><p>According to the <a href="" target="_blank"><i>Telegraph</i></a> the fire was so large that it required more than 50 firefighters and a dozen fire trucks to extinguish. The bookstore and the gallery, which were both located on the first floor, were completely destroyed. Police had not announced a cause for the fire as of Friday afternoon.</p><p>Fortunately, no one was killed in the fire, however four people were treated for minor injuries, <i>The Local</i> reported.</p><p>The bookshop became an instant landmark when it was founded in 1949. As the <a href="" target="_blank"><i>Telegraph</i></a> reported, the shop quickly became a central meeting point for intellectuals throughout the 20th century and counted Coco Chanel, Albert Camus, and André Breton as customers and followers. Perhaps the most impressive point in the store’s iconic history was when Pablo Picasso exhibited several pieces of his work in the gallery space in the store in the 1950s.</p><p>Fans, followers, and even politicians took to Twitter to share their memories at the bookshop, with Mareille de Sarnez, a French politician, leading the charge by tweeting, “My thoughts are with those injured and all those who work in one of the most exciting bookshops in France. I hope to see it alive again.”</p>
Categories: Travel

You Can Now See Star Wars Land From Inside One Of Disney’s Rides

Travel and Leisure - Sun, 11/19/2017 - 06:43
<p>Can’t wait to experience Star Wars in real life at Disneyland and Disney’s Hollywood Studios? You may want to buy that park ticket sooner than later.</p><p>With the upcoming release of “Star Wars: The Last Jedi” on December 15, Disney has added a new scene to its motion simulator attraction <a href="" target="_blank">Star Tours — The Adventures Continue</a> that is stripped from the soon-to-be-revealed movie plot line — but it’s what comes after that may surprise you more.</p><p><strong>Related:</strong> <a href="" target="_blank">Disney Tried to Hide the Millennium Falcon Behind Shipping Containers but Someone Found It on Google Maps</a></p><p>The new Star Tours ride segment sees the Starspeeder 1000 vehicle careening through caverns and canyons of Crait, a mineral planet which will appear in the forthcoming movie. Crait’s blood-red soil and imminent warfare are riveting, but the unexpected look at Star Wars: Galaxy's Edge, the new themed land arriving to Disney's Hollywood Studios and Disneyland in 2019, makes the updated Star Tours an even better ride.</p><img alt=" "src=""><p>The “planet” Disney Parks’ Star Wars Land is located on — the name, Batuu, was also just revealed — appears at the very end of the new Crait sequence. The ride vehicle lands amidst droids and creatures in the center of the immersive environment, providing the first-ever up-close look at what the <a href="" target="_blank">hotly anticipated park</a> expansion will look like.</p><p><strong>Related:</strong> <a href="" target="_blank">Mark Hamill Surprising Fans on Disneyland’s ‘Star Wars’ Ride Is the Best Thing You’ll See Today</a></p><p>In addition to this early appearance of the forthcoming land, which will include a marketplace, cantina bar, themed restaurant and attractions allowing guests to pilot the Millennium Falcon, the refreshed Star Tours attraction sees visits from new characters as well.</p><p>The Last Jedi updates comes with appearances by Maz Kanata and resistance pilot Poe Dameron in interstitial segments of the ride, joining characters like BB-8, Yoda and Princess Leia Organa who appear within Star Tours in randomized sequences.</p><p>These refreshed scenes, which will continue to be added with each new trilogy movie, are just some of the many new Star Wars experiences coming to both coasts prior to 2019 opening of Galaxy’s Edge. Next month, Disney's Hollywood Studios will host <a href="" target="_blank">Star Wars Galactic Nights</a>, an after-hours event with panels, exclusive photo opportunities, character meet-and-greets, themed food, and a <a href="" target="_blank">one-night-only projection show</a>.</p>
Categories: Travel

Escape to Canada’s Winter Wonderland For $187 Round-trip

Travel and Leisure - Sat, 11/18/2017 - 17:35
<p><em>Travel + Leisure</em> just declared Canada its <a href="" target="_blank">2017 Destination of the Year</a>, and there's no better time than now to explore the Great White North.</p><p>Flights to destinations all across Canada — particularly those near the Canadian Rockies — are cheap this winter. The prime destinations for winter sports enthusiasts, including Edmonton, Vancouver, and Calgary, have round-trip flights for less than $300 from many major U.S. cities.</p><p>For example, flights from the New York City area to Calgary start at $297 round-trip, while flights from Miami start at $280. From Calgary, travelers can access British Columbia's mountains to hike or ski.</p><p><strong>Related:</strong> <a href="" target="_blank">Heli-hiking Lets You Trek Above the Clouds</a></p><p>And as a bonus, until the end of 2017, travelers can also enjoy free access to all of Canada’s national parks for the country’s <a href="" target="_blank">150th anniversary</a>. That includes the nation’s oldest, <a href="" target="_blank">Banff National Park</a>, which is within easy driving distance from Calgary.</p><img alt=" "src=""><p>Flights to Edmonton from <a href="" target="_blank">Los Angeles</a>, meanwhile, start at $255 round-trip, while flights to Vancouver are available for $187.</p><p>Vancouver (which starts at <a href=";TripType=2&amp;SegNo=2&amp;SO0=NYC&amp;SD0=YVR&amp;SDP0=10-12-2017&amp;SO1=YVR&amp;SD1=NYC&amp;SDP1=12-12-2017&amp;AD=1&amp;TK=ECO&amp;DO=false&amp;NA=false&amp;currency=USD&amp;cmp2=true" target="_blank">$299 round-trip from New York City</a>) is the gateway to <a href="" target="_blank">Whistler</a>, which offers great powder and crisp blue skies in January and February.</p><p>Travelers taking a trip to Canada’s West Coast this winter can also enjoy more low-key activities like snowshoeing, dogsled rides, scenic gondola rides, and nights spent stargazing by a roaring campfire.</p><p>To visit Canada, use <a href="" target="_blank">Google Flights</a> or <a href="" target="_blank">KAYAK’s Explore</a> tool to find the cheapest travel dates from your departure city.</p>
Categories: Travel

Attention 'Game of Thrones' Fans: This Theater in London Will Play All 67 Episodes in a Single Sitting

Travel and Leisure - Sat, 11/18/2017 - 13:50
<p>As any good <a href="" target="_blank">“Game of Thrones”</a> fan will tell you, there’s nothing quite as horrible as having to go a full year without getting your Jon Snow fix.</p><p><strong>Related:</strong> <a href="" target="_blank">This Tour in Northern Ireland Is the Closest You Can Get to Being on 'Game of Thrones'</a></p><p>Sadly, season seven of the hit HBO show ended in August and the show’s eighth and final season isn’t set to return until late 2018 or even early 2019. If you simply cannot go that long without spending a little time with the Starks and Lannisters then book a ticket to <a href="" target="_blank">London</a> because the Princes Charles Cinema will be showing all 67 episodes on the big screen in a single sitting.</p><img alt="Game of Thrones HBO television show theater "src=""><p>That’s right, for three glorious days fans are invited to sit back, relax and watch every single episode of “Game of Thrones” from start to finish. As <a href="" target="_blank"><em>Cosmopolitan</em> notes</a>, the viewing will begin on Monday, November 27, with the series' premiere episode, “Winter is Coming.” The hits will keep coming until Thursday, November 30, at 4:51 p.m. with the last aired episode, “The Dragon and the Wolf.”</p><img alt=" "src=""><p>That means you can go check out nearly 70 hours of your favorite show without ever having to move. Oh, and that includes food as the theater has also partnered with MOD Pizza to ensure there are plenty of slices to go around.</p><p>The best part, however, is the fact that the entire event is completely free for fans. All you have to do is <a href="" target="_blank">register here</a>. And it’s not like you’ll need a hotel room as you’ll be sitting (or sleeping) in the theater the entire time.</p><p>Of course, if you do feel like taking a break and venturing outdoors, <a href="" target="_blank">London</a> has plenty to offer visitors, especially in the fall when tourist season is at a low. And thanks to Brexit the <a href="" target="_blank">dollar is extremely strong against the pound</a>, meaning your money will stretch just a little bit further so you could even tack on a trip to see the Iron Islands, the Dothraki Sea and Winterfell for yourself in <a href="" target="_blank">Northern Ireland</a>, which is just an hour flight away. But just be warned, winter is coming — to Ireland and London, so make sure to make some warm clothes (like your best Sansa Stark-inspired wolf jacket).</p>
Categories: Travel

3 Ways to Spend Thanksgiving When You're Abroad

Travel and Leisure - Sat, 11/18/2017 - 13:39
<p>It's not easy to be away from home on Thanksgiving, and if you're feeling homesick, it can be even harder to spend the U.S. holiday in a foreign country. While your friends and family are eating pumpkin pie and watching (American) football, the fourth Thursday of the month is just another day everywhere else in the world.</p><p>Whether you're working a full-time job in China, studying abroad in Argentina, or spending your days off in London instead of with family, you don't have to entirely forego tradition. There are still ways to rejoice in good food and all the things you're thankful for, even if you have to postpone your celebration to the weekend.</p><p><strong>Related:</strong> <a href="" target="_blank">Where to Have Thanksgiving Dinner at Disney World and Disneyland</a></p><p>Below are tips to making the most out of Thanksgiving in a foreign country, and to starting new traditions of your own.</p><h2>Find an expats' Thanksgiving dinner</h2><p>In big, international cities, you’ll find restaurants and hotels welcoming American expats, study abroad students, tourists, and culture curious locals alike with Thanksgiving feasts of their own. From <a href="" target="_blank">London</a> and <a href="" target="_blank">Paris</a> to <a href="" target="_blank">Beijing</a> and <a href="" target="_blank">Sydney</a>, restaurants are quick to offer up Thanksgiving favorites like pumpkin pie and roast turkey, in addition to a whole gamut of American classics like mac ‘n’ cheese, gumbo, and clam chowder.</p><img alt=" "src=""><p>The side dishes might not live up to your cousin's or grandma’s oh-so-tasty sweet potato casserole, but the nostalgic taste of America can help alleviate any feelings of homesickness. Reserve your table early so you don’t miss out on this decadent remedy to homesickness and nostalgia.</p><h2>Improvise your own Thanksgiving feast</h2><p>If you have access to a kitchen, brush up on your American history and invite all your international friends to partake in America’s favorite meal. Thanksgiving ingredients like pumpkins and turkey can be hard to come by, so plan well in advance. Scout the international aisle in your local grocery store or see if you can track down a specialty U.S. food store for ingredients. You might even be able to order your <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank">must-have items</a> online.</p><p>Be open to making substitutions. If you still can’t find a turkey, <a href="" target="_blank">Be My Travel Muse</a> suggests using meat that’s “reserved for special occasions” in the country you’re visiting. Try slow-cooked pig in Bali or whole steamed fish in Vietnam. Or substitute turkey for another roasted poultry, like chicken, duck, or Cornish hen. As for mashed and sweet potatoes, consider using another starchy root vegetable as an alternative, such as taro or yucca root. You can also substitute pumpkin for another local squash if your search for pumpkin or pumpkin puree comes up empty.</p><p>As a last resort, consider starting a new Thanksgiving tradition. Ask each of your guests to bring a traditional main course, side dish, or dessert from their home country. Your friends will get to share—and you’ll get to indulge in—their favorite comfort foods, and in the true spirit of Thanksgiving, you’ll feel grateful for the camaraderie and togetherness.</p><h2>Skype your family and friends back home</h2><p>To mitigate the pains of homesickness, plan a Skype session with your family and friends back home. Factor in the time difference and talk to them when they're watching the <a href="" target="_blank">Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade</a>, or have them set up a place for you at the dinner table. What better time to talk to everyone all at once?</p>
Categories: Travel

How to Find the Perfect Cabin in Gatlinburg, Tennessee

Travel and Leisure - Sat, 11/18/2017 - 10:01
<p>Gatlinburg, Tennessee is one of <a href="" target="_blank">the best spots to rent a cabin</a> for travelers interested in seeing the <a href="" target="_blank">Smoky Mountains</a> up close. Positioned on the western border of Great Smoky Mountains National Park, visitors can be out the front door and in the park, headed to one of the forested hiking trails, in less than five minutes.</p><p>Here, outdoor adventure is on your doorstep. There are 800 miles of trails twining through the park, many leading to views of waterfalls and mountain peaks, plus zip-lining, snowboarding, and horseback riding. Gatlinburg also has plenty of live music, but if it’s not enough, Dolly Parton’s famous <a href="" target="_blank">Dollywood</a> theme park is a short drive away.</p><p>While in Gatlinburg, it’s almost mandatory to try one of the local barbeque spots. Just make sure to swing by a pancake house, too. If southern-style food isn’t your preference, there are a number of cafés, steakhouses, and Italian eateries in the area.</p><h2>Where to Stay</h2><p>Travelers visiting Gatlinburg should consider renting a cozy cabin. If you’re headed to the town for a romantic holiday, stay in one of the small, two-person cabins, like the ones available from <a href="" target="_blank">Honeymoon Hills</a>. These log cabins are tucked away on a private property, but still offer modern comforts such as Wi-Fi and spa pools on private decks. They also have delightfully tacky, bright red, heart-shaped Jacuzzi tubs. </p><p>For families or even group holidays, Gatlinburg has a number of larger cabin rentals and chalets. Aside from the wooden walls that give a true log cabin feel, cabins are decorated with accents that flatter the Smoky Mountains location: silhouettes of black bears are a popular motif, as are warm, wintery quilts that keep guests cozy in front of fireplaces.</p><p><a href="" target="_blank">Hemlock Hills Cabins</a> are especially popular with visitors. For a small family getaway, the two-bedroom Cabin Fever rental is perfect. For something slightly larger, try the three-bedroom Truly Blessed cabin. It has a Jacuzzi tub, fireplace, charcoal grill, and multiple TVs. They even let you bring your pet along for vacation.</p>
Categories: Travel

Tonight’s Spectacular Meteor Shower Will Fill the Sky With Radiant Shooting Stars

Travel and Leisure - Sat, 11/18/2017 - 09:46
<p>Find yourself a dark outdoor place (and maybe a friend) tonight.</p><p>On Friday, November 17, the fantastic annual spectacle of the <a href="" target="_blank">Leonid meteor shower</a> will hit its peak around midnight. And 2017 will be a particularly special year to view it, since this year the shower coincides with a new moon.</p><p>For those of us who are not experts on lunar phases, this means that the lack of light shining from the moon in the sky will make everything especially dark — perfect viewing conditions for a meteor shower. (As long as you’re in an area that doesn’t have a lot of street lights or other light pollution.)</p><img alt=" "src=""><p>The shower this year runs from November 6 to November 30, but peaks on the night between November 17 and 18. As in, tonight.</p><p>According to <a href="" target="_blank"></a>, Leonids got their name from the constellation Leo, where it seems like they originate. They’re really just dust and debris left behind Comet 55P/Tempel-Tuttle, which was last seen in our solar system in 1998.</p><p>The best way to maximize your viewing experience is to be in a very dark area on a low horizon, such as a State or National Park. And sadly, you can’t be looking at your phone during the meteor shower -- the light really impedes your view. also says that people in the Northern hemisphere will get a slightly better view, though the shower can be observed from both the Northern and Southern hemispheres.</p><p>But if you miss the Leonids this year, don’t worry. They will literally be back on the pretty much the same days next year.</p><p>Depending on where you live, it’ll likely be a dark and cold night, so stay warm and enjoy the show.</p>
Categories: Travel

Here’s How to Have Thanksgiving Dinner at Disney World and Disneyland

Travel and Leisure - Sat, 11/18/2017 - 09:02
<p>There’s an easy way to avoid holiday cooking and cleaning — and it won’t require you to source your own pixie dust.</p><p>These Thanksgiving buffets, dining events and special menus at <a href="" target="_blank">Walt Disney World</a>, in Florida, and <a href="" target="_blank">Disneyland Resorts</a>, in California, have the perfect makings for a new annual tradition, whether or not you dine with Mickey Mouse in tow.</p><p><strong>Related:</strong> <a href="" target="_blank">Disney Tried to Hide the Millennium Falcon Behind Shipping Containers but Someone Found It on Google Maps</a></p><p>From upscale entrees and quick gravy-slathered eats to a turkey dinner served within a coral reef, here’s where you can get your traditional (and not-so-traditional!) Thanksgiving meal with a side of Disney magic on both coasts. There are more options at Disney World (which is much larger), but Californians can scroll down for West Coast feasting.</p><h2>Thanksgiving at Disney World</h2><p>Epcot’s <a href="" target="_blank">Coral Reef Restaurant</a> and <a href="" target="_blank">Le Cellier Steakhouse</a> will both serve holiday meals at lunch and dinner, offering a unique twist to family traditions by providing a picture-perfect view of the park’s saltwater-dwelling creatures or a taste Canadian fine dining, respectively.</p><p>There are also plenty of no-reservations-necessary options for festive feasting at Walt Disney World, too. Load up on a plate of turkey and all the customary fixin’s at <a href="" target="_blank">Pecos Bill’s Tall Tale Inn and Cafe</a> at Magic Kingdom or <a href="" target="_blank">Sunshine Seasons</a> at Epcot, or for something unique, head to Disney’s Animal Kingdom. <a href="" target="_blank">Satu’li Canteen</a>, the eatery located within the park’s new <a href="" target="_blank">Pandora: The World of Avatar</a>, is serving up a foodie-friendly take on Thanksgiving with a wood-grilled turkey plated with apple and sage stuffing, marmalade-glazed sweet potatoes and candied pecans, in addition to a pumpkin cheesecake mousse for dessert.</p><h3>...and at Disney World Hotels</h3><p>In Florida, <a href="" target="_blank">Animal Kingdom Lodge’s Jiko — The Cooking Place</a> will serve a Thanksgiving dinner, while <a href="" target="_blank">The Wave ... of American Flavors</a> at Disney’s Contemporary Resort will offer a holiday-specific lunch and dinner. <a href="" target="_blank">Olivia’s Cafe</a> at Disney’s Old Key West Resort will cook up a straightforward thanksgiving dinner, with turkey, stuffing, potatoes, yams, cranberry sauce and every other classic dish, including a slice of pie.</p><img alt=" "src=""><p>Visitors to Disney’s Wilderness Lodge will have two choices — a special lunch and dinner cooked up at <a href="" target="_blank">Whispering Canyon Cafe</a> as well as a mouthwatering seasonal three-course menu at Artist’s Point which comes with fresh takes on traditional eats as well as seasonal dishes such as smokey portobello mushroom soup, white chocolate and cranberry bread pudding served with house-made eggnog ice cream and a wintertime trio of buffalo, venison and wild game sausage.</p><img alt="Disney Thanksgiving Minnie "src=""><p>Walt Disney World Swan &amp; Dolphin Resorts restaurants will both have special entrees in honor of Thanksgiving as well. <a href="" target="_blank">Il Mulino</a> will feature a organic heritage turkey truffle panade with confit legs, brussel sprouts, sweet potato, while <a href="" target="_blank">Bluezoo</a> will serve <em>Roulade de Dinde</em> (a high-end turkey roll stuffed with ham), alongside winter squash, green beans, chestnut <em>mezzalune</em> pasta and porcini mushroom gravy.</p><p><a href="" target="_blank">Capa at Four Seasons Resort Orlando</a> at Walt Disney World Resort is offering an a la carte menu as well, with a special roasted turkey confit, winter vegetables, stuffing and potato puree that can be topped off with a seasonal bourbon pumpkin mousse tart.</p><p>Over at Disney Springs, <a href="" target="_blank">Morimoto Asia</a> will serve an exciting “Peking Turkey Dinner” with Japanese-style candied yams, cranberry-lychee chutney, Szechuan peppercorn gravy and a roasted pork fried rice take on stuffing, while <a href="" target="_blank">Chef Art Smith’s Homecomin’</a> will celebrate the holiday as well with a one-day-only roast turkey entree.</p><p>This year, you can enjoy turkey and stuffing with Mickey and Minnie both inside and outside the theme parks. <a href="" target="_blank">Akershus Royal Banquet Hall</a> at Epcot’s Norway Pavilion will host a festive lunch and dinner with plenty of one-on-one visits from Disney’s famed princesses, while <a href="" target="_blank">Chef Mickey’s</a> at Disney’s Contemporary Resort will host Goofy, Pluto, Minnie, Mickey and Donald Duck for its holiday dinnertime buffet.</p><img alt="Whispering Canyon Cafe Thanksgiving "src=""><p>Walt Disney World visitors to Fort Wilderness can enjoy <a href="" target="_blank">Mickey’s Backyard BBQ Feast</a> with a turkey-focused twist. Along with the spread of every kind of Thanksgiving favorite — think both cornbread <em>and</em> cornbread stuffing — guests will enjoy a ho-down as well as a visit from Mickey and Minnie Mouse.</p><img alt="Chef Mickey's Thanksgiving Buffet "src=""><p>Load up on all of grandma’s favorites at festive Disney buffets, including Thanksgiving at <a href="" target="_blank">Four Season Resort Orlando’s Ravello</a>. In addition to the traditional tastes, the vast spread will also include oysters, king crab legs, prime rib, rock shrimp ceviche, and a wide assortment of antipasti, charcuterie, salads, meats and sides.</p><p>Within Epcot’s World Showcase, <a href="" target="_blank">Biergarten Restaurant</a> will be serving up a seasonal lunch and dinner feast, perfect for adding a bit of German flavor and entertainment — not to mention a Bavarian beer stein — to your yearly tradition. <a href="" target="_blank">Garden Grove</a> and <a href="" target="_blank">Fresh Mediterranean Market</a> at Walt Disney World Swan &amp; Dolphin will also offer special holiday buffets on Thanksgiving Day.</p><h2>Thanksgiving at Disneyland</h2><p>In Anaheim, Disneyland California Adventure will feature a rotisserie turkey dish with gravy, mashed potatoes and stuffing at <a href="" target="_blank">Flo’s V8 Café</a> in Cars Land, and <a href="" target="_blank">French Market Restaurant at Disneyland’s New Orleans Square</a> is offering slow-roasted turkey alongside mashed potatoes, gravy, apricot stuffing and cranberry relish and the requisite pumpkin pie.</p><h3>...and at Disneyland Hotels</h3><img alt="Disneyland Hotel Thanksgiving Buffet "src=""><p>At Disneyland Hotel in Anaheim, California, families can celebrate a new custom with a ticketed event inside the resort’s ballroom, complete with a massive buffet and sweet treats, and more importantly, meet-and-greets with plenty of Disney favorites.</p>
Categories: Travel

This Man Has Been on His Favorite Disneyland Ride 10,000 Times

Travel and Leisure - Sat, 11/18/2017 - 09:01
<p>No one loves the thrill of the chase as much as this man.</p><p>Jon Hale finds the Radiator Springs Racers ride, a <em>Cars-</em>themed attraction at <a href="" target="_blank">Disneyland's California Adventure</a>, so much fun he has ridden it 10,000 times as of November 13.</p><p>Hale’s journey to becoming the king of Radiator Springs began in 2012, just after the ride opened, according to his <a href="" target="_blank">blog</a> and <a href="" target="_blank">YouTube channel</a>. The first day he discovered it, he rode the ride seven times. Within six months, he had racked up a total of 56 rides.</p><p>But it wasn’t until he was on his 300th ride that the operators of the ride — the pit crew, as they’re called — noticed Hale. On this ride, he held up a sign that said “300.” As soon as the car pulled up at the end of the ride, he was greeted with cheers.</p><p><strong>Related:</strong> <a href="" target="_blank">Mark Hamill Surprising Fans on Disneyland’s ‘Star Wars’ Ride Is the Best Thing You’ll See Today</a></p><p>After that, Hale got to know all the Disneyland pit crew members like they were his own family; some even invited him to their weddings. They joined him for milestone rides 1,000, 2,000, 3,000, and so on.</p><p>Hale even once rode the ride 30 times in one day to achieve 2,400 rides by the end of 2014.</p><p>He’s also a meticulous record keeper, making notes of every car he rides, the license plates, and whether or not he “wins.” The winning cars are totally random, but he keeps the record regardless. Who knows, if you look at his books, you might even be able to figure out an algorithm from them, but we’re just guessing.</p><p>At this point, you might be wondering why someone would put so much effort into riding a ride. Well, to Hale, it’s much more than that.</p><p><strong>Related: </strong><a href="" target="_blank">Disneyland Is Opening Its First New Hotel in Almost 20 Years</a></p><p>In 2010, before the ride even opened, Hale’s choice of activity on any day off from work was coming to Disneyland. However, moving around was often difficult, as he weighed 405 pounds and suffered incredible pain in his knees.</p><p>Hale couldn’t stand for more than an hour, so in order to come to the park, he had to rent a scooter. After a while, he tried to get knee replacements, but before he could do that, he needed to lose weight.</p><p>After a gastric bypass surgery and a liquid diet, Hale lost 150 pounds and finally was able to have surgery, but recovery wasn’t easy. Walking around Disneyland and riding rides can have an effect on a person’s knees.</p><p>Then, he discovered Radiator Springs, which had just the right fit so he could sit comfortably and still enjoy a thrilling ride.</p><p>According to Hale’s <a href="" target="_blank">blog post</a> on November 14, he rode the ride two more times after reaching his goal of 10,000.</p><p>“We will see what the rest of the year holds for me. I know I need to reach 10,101 on December 8th,” he wrote. And so, the saga continues.</p>
Categories: Travel

This Is How Likely It Is That You’ll Get Bumped From a Flight

Travel and Leisure - Sat, 11/18/2017 - 08:57
<p>Airlines are now bumping far fewer passengers from oversold flights than in previous years, according to a report by the <a href="" target="_blank">U.S. Department of Transportation</a>. U.S. airlines denied boarding to 2,745 passengers between July and September, which accounts for about <strong>one in every 67,000 passengers</strong>. That's the lowest rate since the department began tracking the practice in 1995, the <a href="" target="_blank">Associated Press</a> reported.</p><p>It’s no coincidence that the decline has been notable since April, when <a href="" target="_blank">Dr. David Dao</a> was infamously forced to disembark from a United Express flight. The video of the violent removal went viral, and rallied consumers to demand better treatment from airlines, even if they'd had never been treated in such a severe manner.</p><p>Since the incident, major airlines — not just United — have changed their policies for overbooking. They're increased the compensation that agents can offer passengers to give up their seat, and introduced software solutions, like early bidding, to manage overbooked flights before the travelers are even at the airport.</p><img alt=" "src=""><p>Spirit Airlines was the most likely airline to bump a passenger in the latest quarter, according to the Transportation Department.</p><p>If you want to decrease your chances of getting bumped on your next flight, consider booking on Delta, Virgin America, JetBlue, or even <a href="" target="_blank">United</a> (which has turned things around under intense public pressure). All four of these airlines bumped no more than <strong>one in every 250,000 passengers</strong>, according to the report.</p><p>Although airlines increased possible payments to passengers who are denied boarding, less passengers are now asked to stay behind for the next flight. From July to September, 74,358 passengers voluntarily gave up seats and were paid to do so with cash or a travel voucher, compared to 114,119 people a year earlier, according to the Transportation Department.</p><p>While the report shows airlines are improving, not everyone is satisfied. On Thursday, Democrat Rep. Rick Nolan introduced an airline passenger “bill of rights,” which would ensure the contract between airlines and passengers is more transparent, <a href=";region=3&amp;m_id=Y!Y!vY!_rY!~A&amp;w_id=33819&amp;news_id=2029826" target="_blank"><em>Travelmole</em> reported</a>. The bill of rights would make it explicitly clear what happens to passengers if they are bumped, lose baggage, or have their flight delayed or canceled.</p><p>“As we saw with the horrific United Airlines incident where a passenger was forcibly removed after he was seated on an aircraft, there is an urgent need for airlines to be transparent and inform consumers of their rights,” Nolan said in a statement.</p><p>While the future of that legislation is unknown, it's clear airlines are already motivated not to repeat another incident like in April.</p>
Categories: Travel

Man Forgets Where He Parked, Finds Car 20 Years Later

Travel and Leisure - Sat, 11/18/2017 - 08:36
<p>Misplacing your stuff is the worst.</p><p>Not being able to find something important and not being able to retrace your steps is one of the most frustrating feelings in the world, whether it’s your good sweater that you’re pretty sure you didn’t let your roommate borrow, your phone, or especially your car keys.</p><p>It’s probably even more frustrating when you lose an entire car.</p><p><strong>Related:</strong> <a href="" target="_blank">Hotels' Strangest Forgotten Items</a></p><img alt=" "src=""><p>Authorities in Frankfurt, Germany have tracked down a man’s car that was reported stolen back in 1997. This would be a run-of-the-mill case, except that the car was not, in fact, stolen, but actually simply parked in an old industrial building.</p><p><strong>Related: </strong><a href="" target="_blank">Airline Sends Man a Car Part After Losing His Bag Twice</a></p><p>Apparently, the man, who is now 76 years old, according to the German paper <a href="" target="_blank">Augsberger Allgemein</a>, simply forgot where he parked it and assumed it was taken. It’s like "Dude, Where’s My Car?" only much longer and without any aliens.</p><p>Unfortunately, the car is no longer functional and had to be demolished.</p><p>Some drivers really <em>auto</em> know better than to leave their car unattended. Especially for two decades.</p>
Categories: Travel

Why Disney Employees Aren’t Allowed to Point With Their Index Finger

Travel and Leisure - Sat, 11/18/2017 - 08:32
<p><a href="" target="_blank">Disney</a> is all about the details.</p><p>Sure, every Disney fan knows that the rides, snacks, and the parks themselves are meticulously designed and maintained so visitors can be delighted at every turn, but did you know that this very thoughtful mentality also extends to the park’s staff as well?</p><p>Take, for example, the fact that Disney park employees are banned from ever pointing with just their index finger.</p><img alt=" "src=""><p>Sure, it may seem like a minute detail, but as it turns out there are two distinct conspiracy theories on why park employees are mandated to do the “double Disney point,” including Walt Disney’s smoking habits and simply being polite.</p><p>As the <a href="" target="_blank"><i>Independent</i></a> explained, the two-finger gesture is likely still used today because a single pointed finger can be<a href="" target="_blank"> interpreted as rude</a> to several cultures, including in the United States.</p><p>However, according to <a href="" target="_blank"><i>HuffPost</i></a>, the move could also be an odd homage to Disney himself, as the animator used to have quite the penchant for smoking.</p><p><strong>Related: </strong><a href="" target="_blank">This Is the Hottest Souvenir at Disney Parks This Christmas</a></p><p>According to an anonymous Disney employee, the gesture harkens back to when Disney use to walk through his eponymously named park, cigarette in hand, pointing out different areas of the park to guests with two fingers stretched out. The park employee added that “the two-finger point is part of our training upon being hired in.”</p><p>And the story may even have merit. Tom Hanks, who played Walt Disney in “Saving Mr. Banks,” shared with Ellen DeGeneres on her talk show in 2013 that there are indeed old photographs of Disney holding a cigarette and pointing in the park in the same way. However, in recent years the brand has attempted to disassociate itself from smoking and has even gone to great lengths to photoshop cigarettes out of Disney’s hands, <i>Huffpost</i> reported.</p><p>Next time you’re in a park test it out and ask an employee for directions. Odds are they’ll give you the old double finger point.</p>
Categories: Travel

This Tiny Mountain Town Is Home to Italy's Newest Three Michelin-starred Restaurant

Travel and Leisure - Sat, 11/18/2017 - 08:18
<p>The Restaurant St. Hubertus of the Hotel Rosa Alpina in Italy was just awarded a third Michelin star, an honor that signifies “<a href="" target="_blank">exceptional cuisine that is worth a special journey.</a>”</p><p>And so you may now want to plan a special journey to the tiny northern Italian village of San Cassiano that the restaurant calls home.</p><p><strong>Related:</strong> <a href="" target="_blank">Why November Is the Best Time to Travel to Italy</a></p><p>The ski town offers a variety of things to do and places to stay, from the very cosmopolitan to the very rustic, but the <a href="" target="_blank">Restaurant St. Hubertus of the Hotel Rosa Alpina</a> stands out.</p><img alt="Michelin Restaurant St Hubertus Dining San Cassiano Rosa Alpina Hotel Dolomites Italy "src=""><img alt="Michelin Restaurant St Hubertus Dining San Cassiano Rosa Alpina Hotel Dolomites Italy "src=""><p>Run by chef Norbert Niederkofler, the restaurant specializes in fresh and seasonal cuisine. According to <a href="" target="_blank"><em>The Local</em></a>, Niederkofler’s philosophy is to “cook the mountain,” meaning to only use ingredients that are local. Niederkofler himself is a native to the area.</p><img alt=" "src=""><p>Restaurant St. Hubertus of the Hotel Rosa Alpina is only open in the summer and winter, and offers dishes such as calf tripe, suckling pig with cucumber flowers, and eel and chamomile. All, of course, presented in the most beautiful fashion, as you can see by the restaurant’s <a href="" target="_blank">Instagram</a>.</p><img alt="Michelin Restaurant St Hubertus Dining San Cassiano Rosa Alpina Hotel Dolomites Italy "src=""><img alt="Michelin Restaurant St Hubertus Dining San Cassiano Rosa Alpina Hotel Dolomites Italy "src=""><p>The restaurant, which was founded in 1996 inside an <a href="" target="_blank">hotel’s pizzeria</a> and only seats 11 tables at a time, received its first Michelin star in 2000 and its second in 2007.</p><p><strong>Related:</strong> <a href="" target="_blank">Chip and Joanna Gaines Are Vacationing in Italy and Sharing It All on Instagram</a></p><p>Restaurant St. Hubertus of the Hotel Rosa Alpina is the ninth restaurant in Italy to win three stars from the Michelin Guide so far, <a href="" target="_blank"><em>Eater</em> reported</a>. Among the other recipients is Massimo Bottura’s Osteria Francescana in Modena, considered one of the best restaurants in the world.</p><img alt="Michelin Restaurant St Hubertus Dining San Cassiano Rosa Alpina Hotel Dolomites Italy "src=""><img alt="Michelin Restaurant St Hubertus Dining San Cassiano Rosa Alpina Hotel Dolomites Italy "src=""><img alt="Michelin Restaurant St Hubertus Dining San Cassiano Rosa Alpina Hotel Dolomites Italy "src=""><p>If you aren't already planning a trip in Italy sometime soon, perhaps you should.</p>
Categories: Travel

What It Would Actually Take to Drive Around the World Like This 'Jeopardy!' Winner

Travel and Leisure - Sat, 11/18/2017 - 08:15
<p>Austin Rogers, everyone’s latest trivia darling on "Jeopardy!,"<i> </i>is planning a trip around the world with his winnings.</p><p>Well, that’s easier said than done.</p><p>Rogers, a sassy, formerly scruffy bartender from New York who has won $411,000 so far, might also win $250,000 more on Thursday night’s show. Rogers has expressed that once he’s done answering all the trivia he can possibly answer, he plans to take his money and drive — <a href="" target="_blank">yes, drive</a> — across the world in a 1991 Mercedes-Benz W124 300TE 4MATIC wagon.</p><p><strong>Related: </strong><a href="" target="_blank">How</a><a href="" target="_blank"> One Woman's Spontaneous Road Trip Turned Into a Solo Motorcycle Adventure Around the </a><a href="" target="_blank">World</a>: </p><p>He’s got it all mapped out in his head. The plan involves driving from New York City to South America, then up through Africa to Europe, across to Vladivostok, Russia, then back through India, jumping over to Australia, and then over to Alaska before driving back to New York City.</p><p>Of course, he doesn’t plan to drive over water. He will be shipping the car to his destinations if he cannot drive there.</p><p>However, <em><a href="" target="_blank">Jalopnik</a></em> took the liberty of mapping out Rogers' plan as best they could while also estimating the cost.</p><img alt=" "src=""><p>The drive from New York City to South America is fairly easy, with plenty of stops for gas, food, and lodging available. Rogers will most likely need to stop in Colón, Panama, where he will need to put his car in a shipping container bound for Cartagena, Colombia, as he cannot pass the Darién Gap (the break in the Panamanian Highway) by car. This will cost him an estimated $1,800 just for the shipping. So far, he’s traveled 4,500 miles in about three and a half days (at the very least).</p><p><strong>Related: </strong><a href="" target="_blank">Couple Who Took World’s Longest Road Trip Shares Tips for Getting Along While Traveling</a></p><p>From Cartagena, Rogers will probably be driving to Buenos Aires. This does not account for a stop in Rio de Janeiro, which we think maybe he’d like to go to. But, we digress. Rogers has gone another 4,700 miles in 110 hours at this point. From here, he has to put his car in another shipping container (estimated at about $10,000 this time), and it’s on to Africa.</p><p>Since Google Maps suggested a very dangerous route that sent him through the Sahara Desert, Jalopnik mapped out a different route that goes from Cape Town, South Africa to Tangier, Morocco, which takes you on the Atlantic side of Africa and through lots of amazing cities and countryside. This takes about eight days of driving and over 8,400 miles.</p><p>From there, Rogers takes a ferry over the Strait of Gibraltar and then he’ll be in Spain. The ferry costs about $100, not accounting for what he’ll have to do with the car. From there, he’ll drive a grand total of 8,600 miles to get to Vladivostok, Russia, on the coast of the Sea of Japan. Probably a dream road trip, all in all, but hugely expensive.</p><p>Are you exhausted yet?</p><p>After Russia, Rogers backtracks through Asia, across China and Nepal, where there may or may not be places to stop for gas or food — though plenty of gorgeous views. Let’s also hope he’s keeping maintenance up on the car. Eventually he will reach Chennai in southern India, and finally make his way to Australia. Another $10,000 for shipping.</p><p>After driving the width of Australia, it’s finally time for Rogers to come home. But even that’s a little tricky. <em>Jalopnik </em>found one company that will ship his car from Australia to the U.S., but only to California, so he’d have to ship it again to Alaska — which means even more money spent.</p><p>But once he’s in Alaska, he’s in the clear. From there he drives through a lot of the beautiful Canadian countryside and the northern part of the United States until he finally gets home to the Big Apple.</p><p><em>Jalopnik</em> finally broke down the numbers as best they could, taking in that gas is incredibly expensive abroad, and food and lodging can vary greatly depending on where you are. By their estimate, Rogers may have to spend at least $25,000 on shipping his car, and at least $4,000 on gas — and that’s a conservative estimate.</p><p>He’s definitely going to need all the winnings he can get to make this trip all it can be.</p><p>It’s possible the Rogers could get better mileage with a different vehicle, since a 1991 Mercedes only gets 19 miles per gallon. Still, we wish him happy trails.</p><p>The full details of Roger’s trip, as estimated by <em>Jalopnik</em>, can be found <a href="" target="_blank">here</a>.</p>
Categories: Travel

Chip and Joanna Gaines Are Vacationing in Italy and Sharing It All on Instagram

Travel and Leisure - Sat, 11/18/2017 - 06:58
<p>The “Fixer Upper” stars have been hard at work for years remodeling the homes in <a href="" target="_blank">Waco Texas</a>. Now that they have wrapped the last season of their hit HGTV show, the pair is getting some R&amp;R in <a href="" target="_blank">Italy</a>.</p><p>But don’t worry, the duo is still sharing their every move with fans on Instagram. In a post Joanna wrote, “We both slept for 15 hours and missed breakfast, lunch, and an afternoon of shopping with friends, but that rest felt good! Florence, you're beautiful.”</p><p>There, the Gaines’ partook in a little pasta-making class, which Joanna diligently <a href="" target="_blank">documented on her Instagram story</a>. In one of the posts you can even hear Chip exclaim, “Y’all wanna try making some pasta?”</p><img alt=" "src=""><p>Next, the husband and wife design team grabbed a pair of scooters (as one does when traveling to Italy) for a quick road trip.</p><p>Joanna then shared a truly breathtaking shot above Vatican City, where she and her husband were fortunate enough to catch a rainbow arching across the sky.</p><p>And as <a href="" target="_blank"><em>People</em></a> noted, the couple also took time to celebrate Chip’s 43rd birthday while traveling to Italy. In an Instagram story Joanna shared a video of the moment the crowd sang to Chip, to which Chip replies, “Happy birthday to me!”</p><p>While the Gaines certainly have enough free time to travel the world now that they are retired from their show it turns out they actually picked the <a href="" target="_blank">perfect time to vacation in Italy</a>.</p><p>November may in fact be the ideal month to trek through the European country because it happens to be in the middle of what is known as a “shoulder season,” or the time between two peak travel times. This usually means less tourists which also means less wait times at museums, restaurants, and <a href="" target="_blank">cheaper airfare and hotels</a>.</p><p>And, if you act fast, you could even make it to Italy just in time for the Feast of Saint Cecilia (Santa Cecilia), which as the name implies is a giant feast day celebrated at Santa Cecilia in <a href="" target="_blank">Trastevere</a>. Who knows, maybe the Gaines will be there sharing a few bites of their homemade pasta, too.</p>
Categories: Travel