Man Arrested After TSA Agents Discover Gun Hidden Inside DVD Player at JFK

Travel and Leisure - 4 hours 13 min ago
<p>Transportation Security Administration (TSA) officials at New York’s <a href="" target="_blank">John F. Kennedy Airport</a> discovered a gun hidden inside a DVD player last week.</p><p>On April 13, a man’s checked baggage set off alarms in the security scanner. TSA agents pulled the bag aside and discovered a DVD player inside. They looked closer and “detected a 9 mm handgun wrapped in aluminum foil that was artfully concealed inside the DVD player,” according to an statement from the agency.</p><p>The gun was not loaded, TSA said.</p><img alt="TSA Security at JFK Airport "src=""><p>Security agents found the owner of the bag waiting at the gate for his flight to Mexico. New York Port Authority removed the man from the gate, arrested him and charged him with weapons violations.</p><p>Although this manner of concealment may be highly unusual, finding a concealed weapon in a bag is not uncommon for the TSA. Last year, <a href="" target="_blank">the agency reported a record-breaking 4,239 firearms</a> found in carry-on bags at checkpoints across the country. The agency averages this out to about 11 firearms found every day.</p><p>Earlier this year, a passenger at Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta Airport <a href="" target="_blank">managed to travel with a gun</a> — past TSA — on a Tokyo-bound flight. After realizing he had the gun, the passenger himself alerted the airline that he was carrying a concealed weapon. Some critics blamed the incident on the TSA being short-staffed during <a href="" target="_blank">January’s government shutdown</a>.</p>
Categories: Travel

Google Earth Releases New Feature That Lets Travelers Virtually Tour National Parks Across the U.S. (Video)

Travel and Leisure - 8 hours 6 min ago
<p>With <a href="" target="_blank">more national parks than states</a>, most people will never have the time to visit every protected landscape in the U.S. These parks — which range from the geologically stunning <a href="" target="_blank">Grand Canyon</a> to breathtaking vistas of the Shenandoah Valley — are not usually located near a major airport and take some planning to access.</p><p>For travelers who can’t make the trip, <a href="" target="_blank">Google Earth</a> is releasing a virtual guided tour through 31 of the country’s national parks. The tour releases alongside the presidentially-proclaimed <a href="" target="_blank">National Park Week</a> from April 20 to 28 that’s put on by the National Park Service and the National Park Foundation to celebrate America’s protected spaces.</p><img alt="Google Earth National Park Exploration "src=""><p>Virtual travelers on Google Earth will be whisked away to the pink granite formations in Maine’s Acadia National Park and the ancient Pueblo dwellings of Mesa Verde National Park in Colorado before hiking through Utah’s Kanarraville Falls in Zion National Park.</p><p>The only thing better than visiting the National Parks via Google Earth’s new feature is an in-person trip to a park on April 20 when <a href="" target="_blank">entrance fees are waived</a> to kick off National Park Week.</p>
Categories: Travel

Why Jason Momoa Hates the Way We Drink Water on Airplanes

Travel and Leisure - 10 hours 36 min ago
<p>Aquaman is ready to save the planet again. But this time, he’s doing it in real life.</p><p><a href="" target="_blank">Jason Momoa</a>, the actor behind “Aquaman” and Khal Drogo on <a href="" target="_blank"><i>Game of Thrones</i></a>, is on a mission to get people to switch from plastic to aluminum water bottles. Though it’s already a worthy cause, Momoa knew he needed to do something major to get people’s attention about it. So he did what any enterprising man would do: He shaved his beard.</p><p>“Goodbye Drogo, Aquaman, Declan, [and] Baba!” Momoa said in a new video about the world’s plastic problem. “I’m shaving this beast off, it’s time to make a change.”</p><p>This marks the first time Momoa has gone clean shaven since 2012. Now, he’s hoping his change will help inspire others to change their habits too by switching from plastic bottles to aluminum ones with the new line of canned water that he is helping launch called the <a href="" target="_blank">Ball Corporation</a>.</p><p>“I wanted to make my own water so I could be an example,” Mamoa explained. “So I had a product I could take out to give to the world.” Now, he’s hoping other companies will follow suit and do the right thing to better the world.</p><p>“I just want to do this to bring awareness because plastics are killing our planet and I think we have a solution,” Momoa said. “I don’t want to bitch about it [but] there’s only one thing that will really help our planet and save our planet — as long as we recycle — and that’s aluminum.”</p><p>Specifically, Mamoa called out airports and airlines as a big part of the plastic problem.<br />“I hate going to the airport and getting in the airplane and having a water bottle this big when it can be an aluminum one,” he said.</p><p>As the actor shared, about <a href="" target="_blank">75 percent of all aluminum</a> that’s ever been used is still in use today thanks to aggressive recycling efforts.</p><p>“And it’s 100 percent recyclable,” he added. “You drink the can and in about 60 days, it’ll be back. One hundred percent. Infinitely recyclable.”</p>
Categories: Travel

This Scenic Train Ride Hits All of Switzerland’s Most Magical Stops — and Serves Unlimited Champagne

Travel and Leisure - 11 hours 6 min ago
<p>Taking a train through Switzerland is like riding into a fairytale. Quaint villages dot snow-peaked mountains, creating breathtaking views around every turn. From the Alps to Lake Geneva to the Matterhorn, the country was blessed with some of the world’s most picturesque landscapes, as well as a unique blend of cultures thanks to the borders it shares with Italy, France, Germany, and Austria.</p><p>All of this can only be properly digested slowly — which is why traveling by rail is the perfect fit. Rail travel allows you to sit back and take in the scene while covering all the ground that needs to be covered, and the stops along Switzerland’s routes will convince you it was built to be visited this way.</p><img alt="Switzerland by Train, Glacier Express "src=""><p>The <a href="" target="_blank">Glacier Express</a> whisks travelers from St. Moritz to Zermatt on an eight-hour excursion, and its brand new <a href="" target="_blank">Excellence Class</a> offers spacious seats; a lavish, gold bar; a curated tasting menu paired with unlimited champagne, wine, beer, and top-shelf liquor; and elegant tea time.</p><p>Todd Powell, founder of <a href="" target="_blank">Vacations by Rail</a>, which organizes Glacier Express adventures — and an avid European train traveler himself — shared some of his pro tips with us. Among them: Travel at the beginning or end of peak season to avoid crowds on board and in resort towns along the way. I visited in April and often found myself able to stretch out next to an empty seat.</p><p>Here are all the Swiss villages and experiences you shouldn’t miss.</p><h2>St. Moritz and Pontresina</h2><p>A small town that’s big on luxury, St. Moritz is filled with high-end fashion houses, and it has also hosted the Winter Olympics. Spend the night at the five-star, 160-year-old <a href="" target="_blank">Kulm Hotel</a> for a taste of its history.</p><img alt="Switzerland by Train, Glacier Express "src=""><p>Nearby, Pontresina has all the small-town charm, its main street filled with artisans selling their wares.</p><p>Take a funicular up to Muottas Muragl for sunset and watch the warm orange glow heat the icy blue skies beyond the peaks. Then have dinner at the rustic <a href="" target="_blank">Romantik Hotel Muottas Muragl</a> and end the evening with schnitzel.</p><img alt="Switzerland by Train, Glacier Express "src=""><h2>Poschiavo</h2><p>Just along the Italian border and south of St. Mortiz, you’ll find Poschiavo. Along the cobbled streets you’ll find pastel-hued buildings, views of the Swiss Alps, and a medieval-style square. Architecture enthusiasts should check out the inside of Poschiavo’s quaint church, while landscape lovers will find great hiking trails.</p><p>Stop for pizza, gnocchi, and local wine at <a href="" target="_blank">Hotel Albrici</a>, in the square. Follow up with dessert at the gelato stand just across the way.</p><h2>Zermatt and the Matterhorn</h2><p>I fell into a deep sleep the moment I arrived to Zermatt due to jet lag, but this afforded me an excellent opportunity: seeing Zermatt and the Matterhorn at sunrise. Those who awake during the sunrise will be treated to a special half-hour viewing of the mountain as the sun turns its snowy white surface to blood-orange.</p><img alt="Switzerland by Train, Glacier Express "src=""><p>Wander the streets of Zermatt and then take <a href="" target="_blank">the train</a> up to Gornergrat. Sit on the right side of the train for the best views and photo ops of the Matterhorn. The Gornergrat Kulm Hotel, which sits at the top, is home to an incredible cream of garlic soup stewed into a whole wheat Swiss bread bowl.</p><img alt="Switzerland by Train, Glacier Express "src=""><h2>Montreaux</h2><p>Montreaux will give you a taste of French architecture and cuisine, as France sits in view just across Lake Geneva. The late Freddie Mercury found solace in Montreaux, and Queen recorded their last two albums there. Today, a statue of Mercury stands and a new <a href="" target="_blank">interactive Queen experience</a> is held in the former Mountain Studios located in Casino Barriere de Montreaux. The museum houses a variety of artifacts from the band’s peak period.</p><p>The main walking strip of Montreaux lines Lake Geneva and is an ideal place for a rendezvous, especially in warmer weather. History buffs will be delighted by the city’s <a href="" target="_blank">Chillon Castle</a>, an incredibly well-preserved medieval castle and one of Switzerland’s most-visited sites.</p><p>Visit the Fairmont’s Montreaux Palace and dine at the <a href="" target="_blank">Jazz Club</a> for a whimsical peek into the city’s musical heritage.</p><h2>Grindelwald</h2><p>Wind down your Swiss adventure with a spa experience at the <a href="" target="_blank">Romantik’s Hotel Schweizerhof</a>, and get your fondue fix at <a href="" target="_blank">Barry’s</a>, where you can craft your own plate of meats, vegetables, and carbs. Have a night cap at <a href="" target="_blank">Avocado Bar</a><i> </i>with the aprés ski crowd.</p><p>Grindelwald is also a great launching point for multiple excursions, including <a href="" target="_blank">paragliding</a> in Interlaken and riding gondolas into Murren, up <a href="" target="_blank">Schilithorn</a> and to Piz Gloria, whose claim to fame comes from the 1968 James Bond film, “On Her Majesty’s Secret Service.”</p><p>Schilithorn’s <a href="" target="_blank">thrill walk</a> hugs the side of the mountain and has two suspended, steel-mesh bridges that will make your knees quake. The most daring of travelers can waltz across a glass floor on the edge of the walkway for a view worth conquering a fear of heights for.</p><p>Swing through Stechelberg on your way down from Schilithorn, home to Switzerland’s highest waterfall and scenic hikes.</p>
Categories: Travel

Kate Spade Has so Many Great Travel Bags Right Now — and You Can Get 20% Off

Travel and Leisure - 11 hours 35 min ago
<p dir="ltr">If you’re looking for a new bag to bring on your next trip, call off the search because you’re in the right place. <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank">Kate Spade New York</a> has a <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank">treasure trove of great bags</a> for travel right now — whether you’re shopping for a <a href="" target="_blank">personal item</a> that can hold anything and everything (and yet still look like a proper purse), a sturdy laptop bag that’s worthy of replacing your current work tote, or a versatile little crossbody that’s perfect for going from day to night. And best part is we even scored you a 20% off discount code. (You are the most welcome.)</p><p><strong>Related: </strong><a href="" target="_blank">I’ll Never Buy Another Carry-on Personal Item Again Thanks to This Genius 4-in-1 Bag</a></p><p dir="ltr">We already did the hard work of scouring through the site and picking out our top <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank">Kate Spade purses</a> (and <em>phew </em>are we tired). Listen, it’s always hard picking favorites. So we chose 14. Below, you’ll find everything from large leather tote bags to stylish, night out-worthy crossbodies to even a <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank">Mini Mouse-inspired backpack</a> that’s perfect for a day at a <a href="" target="_blank">Disney park</a>.</p><p><strong>Related: </strong><a href="" target="_blank">17 Stylish and Comfy Travel Backpacks for Women</a></p><p dir="ltr">Just scroll through to shop our picks, but not without using our exclusive discount code, of course. From now until April 22, you can enter the promo code TANDLMDAY19 at checkout to get 20% off full-priced items at <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank">Kate Spade</a> (and be sure to check out the brand’s current <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank">sale-on-sale</a> where you can get an extra 30% off items already on markdown with the code JOYOFSPRING).</p><img alt="Kate Spade Bags for Travel "src=""><h3>Margaux Large Work Tote</h3><p>To buy: <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank"></a>, $303 with code TANDLMDAY19 (originally $378)</p><img alt="Kate Spade Bags for Travel "src=""><h3>Sam Denim Large Pocket Tote</h3><p>To buy: <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank"></a>, $183 with code TANDLMDAY19 (originally $228)</p><img alt="Kate Spade Bags for Travel "src=""><h3>Nicola Mod Dot Large Satchel</h3><p>To buy: <a data-ecommerce="true" href=";dwvar_PXRUA363_color=892&amp;dwvar_PXRUA363_size=U" target="_blank"></a>, $455 with code TANDLMDAY19 (originally $568)</p><img alt="Kate Spade Bags for Travel "src=""><h3>Molly Large Tote</h3><p>To buy: <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank"></a>, $183 with code TANDLMDAY19 (originally $228)</p><img alt="Kate Spade Bags for Travel "src=""><h3>Sydney Large Double-zip Satchel</h3><p>To buy: <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank"></a>, $303 with code TANDLMDAY19 (originally $378)</p><img alt="Kate Spade Bags for Travel "src=""><h3>Polly Medium Backpack</h3><p>To buy: <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank"></a>, $279 with code TANDLMDAY19 (originally $348)</p><img alt="Kate Spade Bags for Travel "src=""><h3>Polly Small Convertible Crossbody</h3><p>To buy: <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank"></a>, $159 with code TANDLMDAY19 (originally $198)</p><img alt="Kate Spade Bags for Travel "src=""><h3>Sylvia Universal Slim Laptop Bag</h3><p>To buy: <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank"></a>, $239 with code TANDLMDAY19 (originally $298)</p><img alt="Kate Spade Bags for Travel "src=""><h3>Margaux Large Tote</h3><p>To buy: <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank"></a>, $239 with code TANDLMDAY19 (originally $298)</p><img alt="Kate Spade Bags for Travel "src=""><h3>Sam Large Pocket Satchel</h3><p>To buy: <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank"></a>, $319 with code TANDLMDAY19 (originally $398)</p><img alt="Kate Spade Bags for Travel "src=""><h3>Amelia Large Tote</h3><p>To buy: <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank"></a>, $375 with code TANDLMDAY19 (originally $468)</p><img alt="Kate Spade Bags for Travel "src=""><h3>Kate Spade New York for Minnie Mouse Neema</h3><p>To buy: <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank"></a>, $263 with code TANDLMDAY19 (originally $328)</p><img alt="Kate Spade Bags for Travel "src=""><h3>15-inch Nylon Tech Backpack</h3><p>To buy: <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank"></a>, $207 with code TANDLMDAY19 (originally $258)</p>
Categories: Travel

Oil Rig Workers Rescue Stray Dog Found Swimming 135 Miles Off Coast of Thailand

Travel and Leisure - 14 hours 56 min ago
<p>Oil rig workers 135 miles off the coast of Thailand rescued a stray dog who was paddling for life in the gulf waters last week.</p><p>Vitisak Payalaw was working on a rig in the Gulf of Thailand on April 12 when he and his coworkers spotted something paddling in the water. It turned out to be a brown dog. It was unclear how long he had been there, but it is believed he may have fallen off a fishing boat. </p><img alt="A dog rescued in the Gulf of Thailand by oil rig workers, At Sea - 17 Apr 2019 "src=""><img alt="A dog rescued in the Gulf of Thailand by oil rig workers, At Sea - 17 Apr 2019 "src=""><p>The dog was able to swim to the platform of the oil rig and clung to it, <a href="" target="_blank">according to Associated Press</a>. Workers held out a pole for the dog to grab onto, but the waves made that impossible. "I thought that if we didn't move quickly, I would not be able to help him," <a href="" target="_blank">Payalaw told CNN</a>. "If he lost his grip, it would be very difficult to help him."</p><p>So the team fashioned a pull out of a rope and managed to get it around the dog’s neck, dragging him onto the rig to safety.</p><p>Once the dog was safe, rescuers gave him fresh water and an electrolyte drink. They named him “Boon Rod,” which means survivor.</p><p>The dog was taken in by a local charity, WATCHDOG THAILAND for treatment and rest after his harrowing journey. He was then transferred to an animal shelter in Thailand's Songkla province, where he was washed and fed.</p><p>If owners do not step forward to reclaim Boon Rod, Payalaw said he intends to adopt him.</p><img alt="A dog rescued in the Gulf of Thailand by oil rig workers, At Sea - 17 Apr 2019 "src="">
Categories: Travel

The Vatican Is Unveiling Its Holy Staircase for the First Time in 300 Years

Travel and Leisure - 15 hours 16 min ago
<p><a href="" target="_blank">Visitors to Rome</a> this spring will be able to experience a once-in-a-lifetime visit to an important Catholic relic.</p><p><a href="" target="_blank">The Vatican</a> announced it will display its holy stairs — believed to have been walked up by Jesus before his judgment by Pontius Pilate — for the first time in 300 years.</p><p>The Scala Sancta, as the stairway is called in Latin, is believed to have been stained with drops of Jesus’s blood as he was crucified. Pilgrims who visit the steps famously ascend on their knees, kissing the blood-stained spots (now marked with medieval crosses). But for the past 300 years, the marble staircase has been covered by planks of wood.</p><p>It is opening to the public after a yearlong restoration project. Visitors will not only be able to see the marble staircase without any covering, but they will enjoy newly restored frescoes on the walls and ceilings.</p><img alt="Scala Santa re-opened after restoration, Rome, Italy - 11 Apr 2019 "src=""><p>"I already did it when it was wooden steps but it's much more moving now," one pilgrim told Associated Foreign Press <a href="" target="_blank">after climbing the revealed staircase</a>. "If you think about the fact that Jesus was here, and where he was held and where he suffered, it's very emotional."</p><p><a href="" target="_blank">Since 1723</a>, the staircase has been covered by wooden planks when Pope Innocent XIII decided the steps could no longer tolerate the wear of thousands of pilgrims’ visits.</p><p>The 28-step staircase is believed to have been taken from Pontius Pilate’s home in Jerusalem in the fourth century and brought to Rome by St. Helena.</p><img alt="Holy Stairs, Rome, Italy - 11 Apr 2019 "src=""><p>After climbing the staircase on their knees, pilgrims enter the Sancta Sanctorum, a room that was once the Pope’s private chapel and contains several relics of saints.</p><p>The stairs will be revealed until June 9, according to the Vatican.</p>
Categories: Travel

This New Cruise Line’s ‘Owners Club’ Lets You Purchase Residences on Their Ships

Travel and Leisure - Fri, 04/19/2019 - 16:45
<p><a href="" target="_blank">Blue World Voyages</a>, a new company <a href="" target="_blank">pioneering the concept of “active lifestyle cruising,”</a> has opened advance registration for those interested in purchasing Owners Club apartments onboard its forthcoming inaugural vessel.</p><p>The yet-to-be-named ship, currently scheduled to set sail in 2020, will spend its first season in the <a href="" target="_blank">Mediterranean</a>, stopping in France, Spain, Portugal, Italy, Greece, Croatia, Turkey, and Montenegro. After southern Europe, future destinations include the Baltic, Scandinavia, and South America.</p><img alt="Blue World Voyages "src=""><p>Having onboard residences was a priority for Blue World Voyages co-founder Fredy Dellis, former CEO of <a href="" target="_blank"><em>MS The World</em></a> — the very first residential cruise ship. “We are pushing boundaries in the luxury travel market with these <a href="" target="_blank">Owners Residences</a>,” he said in a statement, “to provide an entirely new experience for global travelers.” </p><p>Top marine architects <a href="" target="_blank">Tomas Tillberg International</a> and acclaimed firm <a href="" target="_blank">Poggi Design</a> have partnered to create the 24 one- and two-bedroom residences (850 and 1,200 square feet, respectively). Each will come fully furnished, with linens and housekeeping included; depending on the size, buying one will run you $2.35 million to $3.35 million. </p><p>Every residence includes a walk-in closet, master bedroom, stately bathroom, and a grand living area with floor-to-ceiling windows. The space opens onto a large balcony — perfect for sipping cocktails under the sunset. Two-bedroom residences are split across two stories, with the common area on the main floor, and an additional bathroom, guest bedroom, and second private balcony on the upper level. All you have to do when you purchase: choose between a classic or contemporary design, details of which will be released closer to the on-sale date. </p><img alt="Blue World Voyages "src=""><p>Members of the <a href="" target="_blank">Owners Club</a> also have access to a butler, dedicated concierge service, and private lounge and bar, as well as the rest of the ship amenities: active excursions, state-of-the-art fitness center, expansive spa, wellness-focused dining, and more. </p><p>Stay in your new home as long as you want — but if you <em>do</em> ever want to disembark, you can lend your residence to friends or sublet through the company’s rental program (which can help cover annual maintenance costs). </p><img alt="Blue World Voyages "src=""><p>An added bonus: by purchasing a residence, owners will also become Blue World Voyages shareholders, with share values increasing as new vessels are added to the fleet. </p><p>To register for more information, visit <a href="" target="_blank"></a>. <br /> </p>
Categories: Travel

5 Things You Should Never Do on a Cruise (Video)

Travel and Leisure - Fri, 04/19/2019 - 11:30
<p>In my six years of sailing the seven seas, I've met all kinds of new friends and interesting folks. But I've also met the problem passengers: the rude ones, the greedy ones, and the always-late ones.</p><img alt="Passengers on a cruise ship in Brazil "src=""><p>Don't be like them. Here are five cruising pet peeves and no-nos to avoid, so you can make sure you're a crew favorite:</p><h2>Don't: miss the ship.</h2><img alt="Cruise passengers on a pier with a ship in the background "src=""><p>It's <a href="" target="_blank">every cruiser</a>'s worst nightmare: to find yourself gazing up as your cruise ship sails off into the sunset...<a href="" target="_blank">without you</a>. Cruise lines run a tight ship, literally — and if you’re late, they will not wait. If you find yourself in this situation, it will be down to you to cough up the cash and pay for a flight to the next port of call. To avoid this, make sure you’re always on the local time. Otherwise, you could end up like <a href="" target="_blank">British couple the Pratts</a>, who arrived back at their Danube port only to realize their watches weren’t on central European time. It was noon in England, not Austria. </p><h2>Don't: hoard the food. </h2><img alt="Buffet on board a cruise ship "src=""><p>Much like Rebel Wilson, if my family went to a buffet growing up, we always took some home with us. No need to do this on a cruise ship. <a href="" target="_blank">The buffet</a> is open for much of the day, and sometimes for twenty-four hours — in fact, thinking back to my first cruise holiday as a young teen, I remember feeling like it was Christmas upon discovering this. If you're really desperate to eat in your cabin, some vessels will even allow you to order directly to your stateroom free of charge.</p><h2>Don't: pack too much.</h2><img alt="Luggage outside of a cruise ship "src=""><p>There is no getting away from this one...I am definitely <a href="" target="_blank">guilty of being an over-packer</a>. And a majority of the time, the luggage rule on cruises is: “if you can carry it, you can bring it.” Granted, if you’re taking a fly-cruise and sailing out of a far-flung location, you're likely to find luggage restrictions on the part of the airline. But if you don't have restrictions, that means endless pairs of shoes, dresses, and even the kitchen sink! Remember, though, that cabin space is limited. There are also laundry services onboard most ships, so feel free to pack lightly and reuse what you bring. </p><h2>Don't: steal a sunbed.</h2><img alt="Crowded deck on board the Carnival Breeze cruise ship "src=""><p>Just picture it — it’s 6am, and you hear the thunderous sound of footsteps along the corridors. A herd of elephants, you ask? No. It’s the sunbed stealers. One of the only design flaws onboard larger cruise ships is the ratio of sunbeds to passengers; sadly, there simply cannot be enough for the mammoth number of people onboard. Far too often, scheming guests will rise at the crack of dawn, place their towels down on a vacant sunbed, and "reserve" their spot for the day — even if it only receives ten minutes of use. What they don't realize: if this bad behavior is spotted, the crew will monitor you like a hawk, and your towel will not be long for this world.</p><h2>Don't: be rude to the crew. </h2><img alt="Crew member on board a Cunard cruise ship "src=""><p>Countless documentaries have showcased the extremely hard work undertaken by cruise crewmembers. Seven-day weeks, often for six months at a time — no holidays, no paid time off. Remember: politeness costs nothing. Although it may seem obvious, always remember your pleases and thank yous. Much of the crew’s work goes unnoticed; when your cabin steward makes your bed and leaves an <a href="" target="_blank">artistic animal-shaped towel creation</a> on top of your duvet, thank them. One of the biggest insults to staff is stiffing them on gratuity. These tips contribute directly towards their salaries; removing gratuity from your fare will only mean the crew is doing the same work for less money. </p>
Categories: Travel

6 Stylish Smartwatches for Women That Won’t Ruin Your Outfit

Travel and Leisure - Fri, 04/19/2019 - 10:30
<p>When smartwatches first became “a thing,” it was easy to distinguish them from their analog counterparts. They were sporty and utilitarian and the rubber band and awkward, rectangular face were dead giveaways.</p><p>As with most tech, it has taken a minute for functionality to blend with style and practicality. It wasn’t always easy blending a smartwatch into your daily (or nightly) ensemble. The features, however, are super convenient to have at the flick of your wrist, especially while traveling. </p><p><strong>Related:</strong> <a href="" target="_blank">7 Packable Sun Hats That Won’t Get Crushed in Your Suitcase</a></p><p>Fortunately, smart technology has reached new heights allowing for brands to incorporate style into the design. Now, smart watches can blend into your normal life and outfits just like an old-school timepiece would — with leather and metal bands and round faces. Designer brands are getting in on the fun and Apple even collaborated with French luxury house Hermès to create a stylish set of Apple Watch bands. You get all of the functional benefits of smart technology without having to sacrifice style.</p><p>Below, we’ve rounded up six smartwatches that are actually stylish.</p><h2>Samsung Galaxy Watch Active</h2><img alt="Women's Stylish Smartwatches "src=""><p>Track everything with Samsung’s <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank">Galaxy Active watch</a> — from distance to calories to heart rate to sleep and steps. Also stay in touch with smart notifications and GPS and music controls. One of the best features, however, is Samsung’s partnership with the app Calm to provide better mindfulness and wellness experiences when you need them most (ahem, flight delays).</p><p>To buy: <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank"></a>, $200</p><h2>Garmin Vívomove HR</h2><img alt="Women's Stylish Smartwatches "src=""><p>This <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank">smartwatch by Garmin</a> actually has watch hands, making it one of few of its kind to camouflage its smart capabilities. The sleek style features music controls and smart notifications for calls, texts and calendar reminders. It also has wellness monitoring tools like all-day stress tracking and a relaxation timer to help you manage stress and sleep. The battery lasts up to five days in smart mode and two additional weeks in watch mode.</p><p>To buy: <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank"></a>, $300</p><h2>Fitbit Versa</h2><img alt="Women's Stylish Smartwatches "src=""><p>For the fitness-obsessed, the <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank">Fitbit Versa</a> is the perfect smartwatch. It can store more than 300 songs which you can play during your workout of choice (even when swimming laps as the Versa is water-resistant to 50 meters). Like many other smartwatches, it also delivers your notifications discreetly and tracks your daily activity which 24/7 heart rate and sleep stages. We recommend upgrading the band to one of the brand's gorgeous <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank">Horween leather options</a>.</p><p>To buy: <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank"></a>, $230</p><h2>Fossil Venture Smartwatch, Gen. 4</h2><img alt="Women's Stylish Smartwatches "src=""><p>At first glance, you might not realize <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank">Fossil’s Venture Smartwatch</a> is, in fact, a smartwatch — and that’s precisely the appeal. Designed with a round digital display face (and a leather band, if you so choose), this watch is designed using Wear OS by Google making it compatible with iPhone and Android phones. It features built-in fitness activity tracking and notifications from social media, text, email and calendar alerts, among others.</p><p>To buy: <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank"></a>, $279</p><h2>Apple Watch Series 4</h2><img alt="Women's Stylish Smartwatches "src=""><p>Hermès’ partnership with Apple makes the Apple Watch one of the most covetable smartwatches in the game. While the watch bands are interchangeable, we suggest the classic leather double tour band (<a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank"></a>, $489) to make you feel more luxe in your sport watch. The <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank">Apple Watch Series 4</a> is the largest display yet. It features a proactive health monitor with a new electrical heart sensor with low and high heart rate notifications, fall detection, and an emergency SOS. It also has new workout features and a comprehensive activity tracker. Aside from the new health features, it also has built-in walkie-talkie, phone call, and messaging capabilities.</p><p>To buy: <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank"></a>, from $399</p><h2>Michael Kors Sofie Stainless Steel Touchscreen Smartwatch</h2><img alt="Women's Stylish Smartwatches "src=""><p>Even major American designers like <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank">Michael Kors</a> are getting on the smartwatch train. This chic stainless steel watch has mineral crystals around the face making it a slightly more elegant style. It’s water-resistant, Bluetooth-enabled, and comes with Wear OS by Google technology that will connect your watch to your smartphone to stay on top of notifications.</p><p>To buy: <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank"></a>, $200</p>
Categories: Travel

Vanessa Hudgens Has Spent 10 Years Perfecting Her Festival Packing List — Here's What's in Her Backpack

Travel and Leisure - Fri, 04/19/2019 - 10:16
<p><a href="" target="_blank">Vanessa Hudgens</a> is hands down the Queen of <a href="" target="_blank">Coachella</a>. In fact, she may just be the empress of all festivals around the globe. So, when we were granted an audience with her at her kingdom — otherwise known as the Empire Polo Grounds where the Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival is held — we simply couldn’t say no.</p><p>Hudgens was not only there to enjoy the music festival (as she has done for the <a href="" target="_blank">last decade</a>), but she was also on hand to introduce <a href=";slotNum=9&amp;ie=UTF8&amp;node=18505446011&amp;linkCode=w61&amp;tag=poamazoncoachellackratofil0319-20&amp;linkId=cd479c0a0e6cd154f6b8c2d86e07cf01&amp;language=en_US" target="_blank">Amazon’s first-ever Coachella storefront</a>, which allowed festival-goers to shop all of their must-have items and have them delivered right to the grounds.</p><p>So, what did Hudgens order for herself? We stopped in to find out, and learn more about her festival packing essentials.</p><p><strong><em>Travel + Leisure: </em>Do you prefer a backpack, a cross-body bag, or something totally different?</strong></p><p>Vanessa Hudgens: "Always a <a href=";keywords=backpack&amp;qid=1555526468&amp;s=gateway&amp;sprefix=backp%2Cspecialty-aps%2C198&amp;sr=8-4&amp;srs=18505446011" target="_blank">backpack</a>. Always. Because then you don't have to worry about it. With a backpack, I just throw it down, I can rough around, and then it can fit everything I need to in it."</p><p><strong>What’s one thing you always put in your festival backpack? </strong></p><p>"A tapestry. I always like bring a <a href=";keywords=blanket&amp;qid=1555526492&amp;s=gateway&amp;sprefix=blanket%2Cspecialty-aps%2C191&amp;sr=8-10&amp;srs=18505446011" target="_blank">tapestry to sit on</a> so you're not just sitting on the grass. I just link it into my backpack straps."</p><p><strong>What are the things you love to bring in your bag to make sure you have a great time? </strong></p><p>"I love <a href=";keywords=essential+oils&amp;qid=1555526541&amp;s=gateway&amp;sprefix=essential+%2Cspecialty-aps%2C194&amp;sr=8-1&amp;srs=18505446011" target="_blank">essential oils</a> because it's really hot and dusty and I feel like essential oils just like awaken the senses. I love <a href=";keywords=hand+sanitizer&amp;qid=1555526558&amp;s=gateway&amp;sprefix=hand+san%2Cspecialty-aps%2C193&amp;sr=8-5-catcorr&amp;srs=18505446011" target="_blank">hand sanitizer</a>, a <a href=";keywords=portable+fan&amp;qid=1555526627&amp;s=gateway&amp;sprefix=portable+fan%2Cspecialty-aps%2C190&amp;sr=8-2-catcorr&amp;srs=18505446011" target="_blank">portable fan</a>, a <a href=";qid=1555526658&amp;s=gateway&amp;sr=8-1&amp;srs=18505446011" target="_blank">hat</a>, a <a href=";key=YAMMID-49043066&amp;" target="_blank">portable charger</a>, and sunscreen."</p><p><strong>Do you have any favorite sunscreens?</strong></p><p>"Yes, I have my <a href=";keywords=drunk+elephant&amp;qid=1555526672&amp;s=gateway&amp;sprefix=drunk+e%2Cspecialty-aps%2C191&amp;sr=8-2-catcorr&amp;srs=18505446011" target="_blank">Drunk Elephant Sunscreen</a> I love their <a href=";keywords=drunk+elephant&amp;qid=1555526672&amp;s=gateway&amp;sprefix=drunk+e%2Cspecialty-aps%2C191&amp;sr=8-1-catcorr&amp;srs=18505446011" target="_blank">lip balm</a> as well."</p><p><strong>What about shoes? Do you have a favorite you always wear to festivals?</strong></p><p>"I did wear this pair of tan boots for the longest time, but they were getting really beaten up. Trudging around in boots you need to have a comfortable pair. Last year I wore my <a href=";keywords=doc+martens&amp;qid=1555526704&amp;s=gateway&amp;sprefix=doc+mar%2Cspecialty-aps%2C189&amp;sr=8-1" target="_blank">Doc Martens</a>, but I broke them in a week beforehand, so then I was ready to conquer the grounds. And, this year, I brought my <a href="" target="_blank">Naked Wolf platform sneakers</a> because they're really comfortable. And, since I'm 5-foot-3, I need all the height I can get."</p><p><strong>What are the items you’d order to your Amazon Locker? </strong></p><p>"<a href=";keywords=ear+plugs&amp;qid=1555526769&amp;s=gateway&amp;sprefix=ear%2Cspecialty-aps%2C353&amp;sr=8-1&amp;srs=18505446011" target="_blank">Earbuds</a>. I forgot that it's loud here and I'm a grandma and I don’t love the idea of going deaf earlier than need be. And Benadryl. And another thing that I was going to get is <a href=";qid=1555527441&amp;s=gateway&amp;sr=8-1" target="_blank">light-up shoelaces</a> to string onto my sneakers for later in the night."</p><p><strong>What makes Coachella so special anyway? </strong></p><p>"I<b> </b>think the fact that this is like probably my 10th year, it's become a tradition. I love having markers throughout my years to represent the time. And this is always like a great time filled with great memories. I love music and I love Coachella because it's on a polo field, you actually have grass underneath your feet."</p><p><strong>Any tips for first-time attendees? </strong></p><p>"Be OK with not following through with your plan. It can be very overwhelming. There is probably a ton of things that you want to do, but trust your instincts and go with what feels right at that moment." </p><p>There's still time to <a data-ecommerce="true" href=";node=18505446011" target="_blank">order festival gear</a> to your Amazon Locker for Coachella weekend two, which kicks off this Friday, April 19.</p>
Categories: Travel

A ‘Beauty and the Beast’ Themed Bar Is Opening in Disney World (Video)

Travel and Leisure - Fri, 04/19/2019 - 09:52
<p>Come this fall, Disney World will invite you to be their guest at a new “Beauty and the Beast” themed lounge and bar.</p><p><a href="">Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort &amp; Spa</a> is opening a four-part lounge and bar, inspired by the 2017 live action film. Renovations are expected to be completed by fall 2019, according to the park.</p><p>In the signature bar area, a gold chandelier, inspired by Belle’s famous ball gown, will be the centerpiece. A motif of the Beast’s magical rose will appear throughout the room. Or visitors could take a hint from Belle and spend their time in the library room, decked out in classical baroque themes and French furnishings. The garden room will be inspired by the enchanted forest that surrounds the Beast’s castle and an outdoor patio area will be reminiscent of the castle’s terrace.</p><img alt="Beauty and the Beast Bar at the Grand Floridian at Walt Disney World Resort "src=""><p>The bar is taking over the former <a href="">Mizner’s Lounge</a> on the second floor of the hotel, where nightly live jazz and high-end cocktails were in full rotation.</p><p>If you prefer the animated film Disney released in 1991 to the live-action remake, consider dining at the <a href="">Be Our Guest Restaurant</a> or <a href="">Gaston’s Tavern</a>, opened in 2012 in Magic Kingdom's Fantasyland area. Both dining areas feature nods to the film, with French-inspired fare and menu options like “LeFou’s brew.”</p><p>If the park’s previous “Beauty and the Beast” themed spaces are any indication of what’s to come, guests can expect plenty of French-themed options on the menu and many references to the hit song “Be Our Guest.” <em>Don’t believe me? Ask the dishes...</em></p>
Categories: Travel

Uber Unveils New 'Check Your Ride' Feature After Student's Tragic Death

Travel and Leisure - Fri, 04/19/2019 - 09:28
<p>On Thursday, <a href="" target="_blank">Uber</a> announced its plans to roll out new features to ensure its customers remain safe on their rides.</p><p>The announcement came just weeks after Samantha Josephson, a 21-year-old University of South Carolina student, was murdered after she got into a car she mistook for her Uber.</p><p>The new feature, <a href="" target="_blank"><em>NBC</em> reported</a>, will include a push alert sent to all riders before they enter any vehicle. The alert will ask riders to check the license plate along with the make and model of the car. It will also provide the name and picture of the driver so riders can check, as well as ask the rider to confirm the driver’s name.</p><p>"We are heartbroken about what has happened,'' Tony West, Uber's chief legal and security officer, told <em>TODAY</em> about Josephson’s death. "For us, it's a reminder that we have to constantly do everything we can to raise the bar on safety."</p><p>According to <em>NBC</em>, when a user opens the app they will also be presented with a banner, which reads, "check your ride every time." Then, a second notification will pop up after ordering a ride, along with a third notification just before the driver arrives to again check to make sure it’s the real driver.</p><p>Beyond the notifications, Uber is also working with major U.S. universities, starting with the University of South Carolina, to place <a href="" target="_blank">dedicated pickup locations</a> on campuses to further ensure a safe ride.</p><p>"The more information you can give to customers, the better," Kelly Nantel, vice president of communications and advocacy at the National Safety Council, told<em> NBC</em>. "As ride-shares increase, I think it's really important that riders have confidence not just in the safety of the vehicle, but also in their security. I think these are steps that move this industry in the right direction."</p>
Categories: Travel

Fireflies Will Soon Light Up the Skies In Mesmerizing Harmony — Here's How to See Them

Travel and Leisure - Fri, 04/19/2019 - 08:38
<p>For roughly two weeks each year, <a href="" target="_blank">synchronous fireflies</a> put on a dazzling light show in the skies for onlookers across locations throughout the U.S.</p><p>The lightning bugs, which are actually beetles, are the <a href="" target="_blank">only type of firefly</a> in America that are able to actually synchronize their flashing light patterns to create a dramatic nighttime spectacle.</p><p>For this reason, visitors travel to locations like <a href="" target="_blank">Great Smoky Mountains National Park</a> each year to catch the natural phenomenon and the array of twinkling lights they create.</p><p>While no one is quite sure exactly why the fireflies synchronize their flashes, the display is known to occur during their mating season, with <a href="" target="_blank">NPS representatives</a> stating the flashes could be a way for male fireflies to try to catch the attention of female fireflies.</p><p>One theory is that the male fireflies all flash around the same time due to competition, with each trying to be the first to flash. Another theory is that the males could be choosing to flash together to have a stronger chance of being spotted by a female firefly, who can them make comparisons.</p><p>The fireflies don’t always flash in unison, though, and can sometimes treat viewers to waves of flashes that appear across hillsides and random flashes across dark skies before going into bursts of synchronized flashing.</p><p>Factors like temperature and soil moisture play a role in the phenomenon, making it impossible to predict the exact date it will start and peak, though park representatives at Great Smoky Mountains say peak dates typically fall between the third week of May and the third week of June.</p><p>The park is one of the most popular locations to witness the display, which is why visitors hoping to witness the fireflies in the Smoky Mountains will need to enter a lottery due to the large numbers of those interested. </p><p>The <a href="" target="_blank">lottery</a> will open up on Friday, April 26 at 8 a.m. on the <a href="" target="_blank"> — Firefly Event page</a> and close on Monday, April 29 at 8 p.m., with winners notified on May 10. This year, winners will also need to pay a $25 reservation fee that will go towards viewing supplies and personnel that manage the viewing grounds each night. </p><p>For those who don’t happen to get a pass for Great Smoky Mountains’ viewing, several other locations offer the opportunity. </p><p>South Carolina’s <a href="" target="_blank">Congaree National Park</a>, which is also home to some of eastern America’s tallest trees, hosts a Fireflies Festival in May.</p><p>This year’s festival, which runs from May 10 through May 27, will include a <a href="" target="_blank">Fireflies Trail</a> to give visitors access to the top viewing areas in the park. The trail will start at the Picnic Shelter and end at the Harry Hampton Visitors Center, and no reservations are required to enter the park.</p><p>Rangers advise that those planning to stick around for evening views arrive ahead of time (the best time to view fireflies is usually between 9 pm. and 10 p.m.), with recommendations to bring a picnic lunch and spend some time enjoying the park to avoid access difficulties later in the evening.</p><p>Pennsylvania’s only national forest, the <a href="" target="_blank">Allegheny National Forest</a>, is also home to synchronous fireflies.</p><p>A <a href="" target="_blank">festival</a> takes place in the forest each year, though there are several locations within the forest as well for those who don’t happen to have tickets to the festival itself.</p><p>Synchronous fireflies have been spotted at locations like the Branch and Salmon Creek and at the Little Minister Creek behind Black Caddis Ranch, as the fireflies are known to head to locations that have a dark canopy and nearby water sources like a creek, bog, or pond.</p><p>In the past, they have also been spotted at the Buzzard Swamp recreation area and wildlife refuge, the Minister Creek campground, at the Kelly Pines campground, and at the Heart’s Content National Scenic Area, though travelers should keep in mind that it can be difficult to guarantee spotting the fireflies. </p><p>According to forest representatives, the synchronous firefly display is only noticeable five to 10 nights each year, with precise dates varying each year though the best times have typically fallen between mid-June to early July between 10:45 p.m. and midnight in the past. </p><p>The forest is also home to Chinese lantern fireflies, which fly lower to the ground and are <a href="" target="_blank">known to emit shines</a> that are close to 50 percent brighter than most firefly species. The best time to see them is June to early July, from 9:30 p.m. to midnight<b>.</b></p><p>At <a href="" target="_blank">Molly Branch Fireflies</a> in Corryton, Tennessee, the Bennett family has opened the doors of their private property to allow visitors to take in the displays that the snappy sync synchronous fireflies create on their grounds. </p><p>While the family has lived on the property for more than 30 years and had the opportunity to witness the magnificent displays the fireflies put on for years, they decided to open their property to the public for the first time last year to honor mother and wife, Jeanette Bennett, who passed away in March of 2018 and enjoyed watching the firefly displays with her family. </p><p>Tickets will be $10 and available for purchase once exact dates are determined, though viewings are expected to likely start between June 10 and June 12 and last for two weeks. The firefly viewing area is near a wooded hillside where wildflowers bloom to make for a relaxing setting to see the twinkling show.</p><p>There are certain guidelines to follow when going to view fireflies that visitors should keep in mind. These include keeping noise levels down, staying on designated trails, collecting all garbage to protect the fireflies’ habitat, and refraining from catching or collecting any of the creatures.</p><p>Park representatives <a href="" target="_blank">also recommend</a> using flashlights only when necessary and turning them off once you reach the viewing point. They also recommend pointing flashlights straight down to the ground and covering lights with red or blue cellophane to avoid disturbing viewings. </p>
Categories: Travel

Live Out ‘Night at the Museum’ With the Smithsonian Museum's Summer Sleepover Series

Travel and Leisure - Fri, 04/19/2019 - 08:24
<p>How would you like to spend a night at the museum? Get ready to pack your pillow and a toothbrush.</p><p><a href="" target="_blank">Smithsonian Associates</a>, an educational program through the Smithsonian Museum, has just announced dates for special sleepovers for kids at the National Museum of Natural History, the National Museum of American History, the National Air and Space Museum’s Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center in Chantilly, Virginia, and the National Portrait Gallery between May and August. Don’t worry, none of the exhibits will come to life after dark like in the Ben Stiller movie. At least, we don’t think.</p><img alt="Smithsonian Museum Sleepovers "src=""><p>Beginning at 7 p.m. and ending at 8:45 a.m. the following day, kids and their chaperones have the unique chance to explore the museum away from the crowds and take part in special demonstrations, games, crafts, and other activities, according to a statement from Smithsonian Associates.</p><p>Each museum has distinctive experiences for little adventurers to enjoy. At the National Museum of Natural History, guests will be able to wander the new Fossil Hall, where they can get an up close and personal look at dinosaurs and ocean creatures. When it’s time for some shut-eye, they’ll sleep under the museum’s famous giant whale. Dates include June 21 and 28, July 19 and 26, and Aug. 2 and 9.</p><p>At the National Museum of American History, kids will be able to solve a historic mystery involving a thief who stole six valuable objects from the museum. Kind of like "National Treasure," without Nicolas Cage. By the end of the game, kids must discover what is missing by using their skills of deduction and collecting clues. Another highlight of the evening includes a game that lets kids become a presidential candidate. These sleepovers will be held on May 24, June 15, and July 5.</p><img alt="Smithsonian Museum Sleepovers "src=""><p>At National Air and Space Museum’s Steven F. Udvar Hazy Center, the world of flight is at your fingertips. Kids will learn about aviation history and even get a close-up view of some of the world’s most famous and innovative aircraft. These sleepovers are scheduled for May 18, July 13, and Aug. 17.</p><p>At the National Portrait Gallery, kids will hear stories about famous poets, presidents, actors, inventors, activists and everyone in between. Games involve immersive guides through the museum as well as creating your very own portraits. This sleepover will be held on Aug. 23.</p><p>Sleepovers are for children aged 8 to 14, and there must be one adult present for every three children in every group in attendance. Adults must be 21 years or older and must be accompanying a child. Ticket prices are $135 for general admission and $125 for Smithsonian Associate members. Prices include access to the museum, an evening snack, activities, and a light breakfast in the morning.</p><p>In order to pre-register, participants can call (202) 633-3030 or by visiting the Smithsonian Associates box office. More information can be found on the <a href="" target="_blank">Smithsonian Sleepovers</a> website.</p>
Categories: Travel

Thousands of Flights Delayed or Cancelled Due to Severe Weather Ahead of Easter Weekend

Travel and Leisure - Fri, 04/19/2019 - 06:48
<p>Travelers who bought a mid-week flight to get ahead of the busy Easter and Passover travel weekend aren’t getting the head start they anticipated as severe weather warnings are leading to flight delays and cancellations. At the time of this writing, more than 2,000 flights have been delayed within, into, or out of the U.S. and over 230 have been canceled, according to flight-tracking website <a href="" target="_blank">FlightAware</a>.</p><p>And the delays and cancellations may continue into the weekend with the <a href="" target="_blank">National Weather Service warning</a> that “a multi-day weather event with severe storms and heavy rainfall will impact several parts of the country.” The agency reports that there’s potential for tornadoes, wind damage, and flash flooding across the central Gulf Coast on Thursday and that the "threats will press eastward towards the East Coast on Friday.”</p><p>According to FlightAware, Southwest Airlines has been hit the hardest with 83 cancellations and 362 delays as of writing. American Airlines follows with 66 cancellations and 225 delays. <a href="" target="_blank">Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport</a> has taken the brunt of U.S. airport cancellations with 66 cancellations and 105 delays as of writing.</p><p>The National Weather Service reported online that "the greatest risk of severe weather is in the Gulf Coast states today, and in the Southeast Atlantic Coast states from Virginia to Florida on Friday.”</p><p>Travelers with <a href="" target="_blank">flights today</a> and through the weekend should monitor flight status as weather updates are reported.</p>
Categories: Travel

You Can Do Pilates With Miniature Pigs on This Farm in England

Travel and Leisure - Fri, 04/19/2019 - 06:19
<p><a href="" target="_blank">Yoga with lemurs</a> (and <a href="" target="_blank">goats</a>, and <a href="" target="_blank">alpacas</a>, and <a href="" target="_blank">pretty much every animal</a> under the sun) is <em>so</em> yesterday.</p><p>If you really want to get a good workout, you have to do Pilates with miniature pigs.</p><p>According to <em><a href="" target="_blank">The Metro</a></em>, Pennywell Farm in Buckfastleigh, England is now offering Pilates classes with some special, curly-tailed workout buddies.</p><p>Much like the various animal-themed yoga classes that can be found just about anywhere around the world, the concept of this class involves a fairly straightforward Pilates session down on the farm — while little pigs are allowed to roam around you.</p><p>“Exercise is an important part of life so should never be boring. You can have a real giggle and still have a good workout,” said Pennywell Farm owner Chris Murray to <em><a href="" target="_blank">Pretty 52</a></em>.</p><img alt="Pennywell Farm, UK - Pig Pilates "src=""><p>After the class participants are allowed to cuddle with the mini pigs to their hearts’ content. An after-class continental breakfast and coffee is included.</p><p>Pilates instructor Harry Parkes says it’s not all about the pigs. The class itself is still as challenging as a normal Pilates class. “While there is plenty of fun to be had, Pilates has many benefits including improving posture, movement quality, mobility, flexibility, mental cognition, and core strength,” Parkes told <em>The Metro</em>.</p><p>Hopefully, the tiny roaming pigs won’t get in the way of your planking.</p><p>“With pigs being curious by nature — it should prove to be interesting,” said Parkes to <em>Pretty 52</em>.</p><p>The 50-minute class costs £35 (just over $45), but also includes the cuddle session, refreshments, and access to the rest of the farm for the entire day. The session begins at 9 a.m. sharp.</p><p>The first class is planned for May 12, with additional classes scheduled for June 30, July 21, Aug. 11, and Sep. 8, according to <em>The Metro</em>.</p><p>For more information or to book a spot, visit the <a href="" target="_blank">Pennywell Farm website</a>.</p>
Categories: Travel

Passengers Escape Onto Airplane Wing After Spotting Flames Coming Out of Engine

Travel and Leisure - Fri, 04/19/2019 - 06:00
<p>Three passengers on a flight in <a href="" target="_blank">Russia</a> opened the emergency exit and climbed out onto the wing of a Boeing 737 after they spotted flames coming out of one of the plane’s engines. Cabin crew assured the passengers this was “normal,” according to <a href="" target="_blank"><em>the Independent</em></a>. </p><p>The Utair flight was scheduled to leave Moscow’s Vnukovo International Airport and was bound for Makhachkala, in the southwest of Russia. The Boeing 737 was taxiing along the tarmac when passengers spotted flames coming out from underneath one of the wings. One took a video in which a flight attendant can be heard delivering a <a href="" target="_blank">safety speech</a> over the loudspeaker. Panic ensued as passengers rushed out of their seats when they spotted the flames.</p><p>Three passengers — two men and a woman — seated in the emergency exit row opened the door and climbed out onto the wing of the plane.</p><p>“This was an ordinary situation, the plane was in order, passengers were in no danger,” a spokesperson for the airline <a href="" target="_blank">told Russia’s <em>RBC news</em></a><em>.</em> The spokesperson said the flames were caused by a disrupted air flow when the engine turned on, <a href="" target="_blank">according to <em>The Independent</em></a>. A disrupted airflow is indeed a reason that flames may come out of an engine. <a href="" target="_blank">This doesn’t necessarily mean that the engine itself it on fire.</a> It could just be excess fuel burning off.</p><p>Despite this, the airline switched passengers to a different aircraft to continue the journey. (However, this could have to do with the fact that <a href="" target="_blank">the plane would likely need to undergo inspection</a> after an emergency exit was opened.)</p><p>The three passengers who attempted an escape were detained for questioning. They said they had been following the airline’s safety instructions when they stepped out.</p><p>“When the panic started, when people started to run, squashing each other, when they began screaming and yelling, in order to pacify them and to stop the panic we opened the emergency exit,” <a href="" target="_blank">one of the passengers told <em>The Sun</em>. </a> </p>
Categories: Travel

This Is the Best City in America to Celebrate Easter

Travel and Leisure - Thu, 04/18/2019 - 17:23
<p>Easter is arriving on Sunday, April 21, and for those looking to celebrate the occasion, some cities in America are known to be packed with activities and ways to mark the holiday. </p><p><a href="" target="_blank">Wallethub</a> recently compared 100 U.S. cities to find which offer for the occasion based on metrics within four categories: the number of Easter observers, Easter traditions (like brunch restaurants per capita and costs of a restaurant meal), kids’ Easter activities (like Easter egg hunts), and weather conditions around the holiday. </p><p><a href="" target="_blank">New York City</a> ranked as the top destination, hosting the most brunch restaurants per capita, the most candy and chocolate stores per capita, the most <a href="" target="_blank">flower and gift shops</a> per capita, and the most Easter egg hunt events per capita. New York City was followed by Chicago and Los Angeles in second and third place. </p><p>Brunch options abound in the city, featuring everything from lemon ricotta pancakes and Maine crab cakes at <a href="" target="_blank">Jams at 1 Hotel Central Park</a> to prime rib with spring onions and Swiss chard and asparagus with crispy brown egg and warm Talleggio cheese at <a href="" target="_blank">the Osprey</a> at 1 Hotel Brooklyn Bridge. </p><p>You can even take a cruise to combine brunch or dinner with hours of views over New York City's skyline. For example, <a href="" target="_blank">Bateaux New York</a> has a bottomless mimosa brunch with dishes like Scottish smoked salmon, forest mushroom ravioli, and herb roasted shrimp, and an Easter dinner cruise with options that range from duck pate and braised short rib to broiled Maine lobster tails. </p><p><strong>Related: <a href="" target="_blank">A ‘Pink Easter Moon’ Is Coming on Good Friday — Here’s How to Make Sure You Don’t Miss It</a></strong></p><p><a href="" target="_blank">Spirit Cruises</a> also has both an Easter brunch and dinner cruise, with options that range from slow-roasted strip loin to oven baked flounder. Both cruises include live entertainment options that include either a band, a DJ, or a pianist. </p><p>New York City is also home to longstanding Easter celebrations like the <a href="" target="_blank">Easter Parade and Bonnet Festival</a>, with parade marchers adorned in bonnets as they march down Fifth Avenue to celebrate a tradition dating back to the 1870s.</p><p>There are also Easter egg hunts at locations that range from the <a href="" target="_blank">Children’s Museum of Manhattan</a> to the <a href="" target="_blank">NYC Fire Museum</a>, while the Rockefeller Center also hosts a <a href="" target="_blank">brunch package</a> that includes ice skating with an Easter bunny and a three-course brunch.</p>
Categories: Travel

These Travel-friendly Leggings Come With Pockets for Your iPhone and Keys

Travel and Leisure - Thu, 04/18/2019 - 16:27
<p>Working out <i>should </i>be one of the most straightforward, mindless tasks of modern life, requiring little more than gym shorts, a pair of running shoes, and maybe a motivating soundtrack. But in the past few years, a dizzying number of fitness gear and tech companies have flooded the market — selling everything from <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank">activity-tracking finger rings</a> to <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank">yoga pants that correct your form</a> — turning the simple act of getting dressed into an endurance test in itself.</p><p>In comparison, <a href="" target="_blank">New York City</a>-based apparel brand <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank">Wolaco</a> focuses on the basics, creating fashionable but fuss-free apparel that actually makes your life and workout that much easier — making it our go-to brand for <a href="" target="_blank">exercising on the road.</a></p><img alt="Wolaco sportswear "src=""><p>Funded by a Kickstarter campaign that overshot its projected goal by about 400%, Wolaco is best known for its <a href=";tag=tlpocketcompressionshorts-20&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;creativeASIN=B06XRKDBL6&amp;linkId=b2cda0663bd48b1b0e3b9eb05a0c8cca" target="_blank">super durable compression shorts</a>, which have discreet, sweat-proof side pockets that are ideal for storing valuables like cellphones or keys.</p><p>Wolaco has already won over professional athletes, including former NFL running back Tony Richardson — and now that the brand is branching into women’s wear, it’s only a matter of time until sport's leading ladies start donning the thoughtfully-designed technical gear.</p><img alt="Wolaco sportswear "src=""><p>Taking a conscious approach to expansion, the new drop consists of just <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank">4 products</a>: a sports bra, two different workout tops (one short sleeved, one long-sleeved), and a super flattering pair of leggings — complete with the sweat-proof pocket detail, of course.</p><img alt="Wolaco sportswear "src=""><p>The styles are feminine while still being practical for everyday wear, and come in a variety of different shades, including teal, periwinkle, and maroon.</p><p>Now that Wolaco has your workout gear all sorted, all that's left for you to do is drag yourself to the gym — and if you live in New York City, <a href="" target="_blank">Wolaco's got you covered for that, too.</a></p><p>To buy: <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank"></a>, $104</p>
Categories: Travel