A Two-day JetBlue Flash Sale Has Flights Starting at $39 (Video)

Travel and Leisure - Wed, 02/14/2018 - 16:16
<p>JetBlue is the latest airline to show its soft side with a <a href=";cluid=52011599&amp;cpgnname=20180213_Airways_FareSale_JetBlue_Select-Base_N_NA_NA_NA_NA_NA_NA_FLL-MCO-SJU-LGB-Remainder_NFS&amp;RIID=66506600&amp;CLUID=52011599" target="_blank">Valentine’s Day-themed flight deal</a>. Until Wednesday, Feb. 14 at 11:59 p.m. EST, travelers can book flights with the low-cost carrier starting at $39 one-way.</p><p>Highlights from the sale include $39 flights from Chicago to Fort Lauderdale, $59 tickets from Baltimore to Orlando, and $74 flights from New York City to <a href="" target="_blank">Savannah, Georgia</a> — making it easy to take a quick springtime getaway with your sweetheart.</p><p><strong>Related: </strong><a href="" target="_blank">Last-minute Travel Deals for a Romantic Valentine’s Day Vacation</a></p><p>Of course, the sale includes slightly more far-flung getaways, like a $74 trip from New York City to Bermuda, and a series of $94 tickets from South Florida cities to Mexico, Puerto Rico, and Cuba.</p><p>Travelers can also book flights to <a href="" target="_blank">JetBlue</a>’s more exotic destinations using this sale, like Cartagena, Colombia, <a href="" target="_blank">Curacao</a>, and Jamaica (starting at $164 from New York City).</p><p>To take advantage of JetBlue’s discounted airfare, travelers must have flight reservations before midnight on Valentine’s Day.</p><p>Travel dates are available between March 6 and June 13, though blackout dates do apply (specifically, May 22 to May 30).</p>
Categories: Travel

WOW Air Has Cheap Flights to Iceland Starting at $198 Round-trip

Travel and Leisure - Wed, 02/14/2018 - 15:46
<p>WOW Air is having another sale, with cheap flights to Iceland starting at <a href="" target="_blank">$99 one-way</a>, or $198 round-trip. If you haven't been to this popular northern destination yet, here's a chance to get a great deal.</p><p>The cheapest fares to <a href="" target="_blank">Reykjavik</a> are available from New York City, Boston, Pittsburgh, Cleveland, Cincinnati, Detroit, Chicago, and Washington, D.C. The cheapest travel dates vary by origin airport, and are available throughout the year.</p><p><strong>Related:</strong> <a href="" tabindex="http:" target="_blank">The Best Times to Visit Iceland</a></p><p>If your dates are flexible, you can likely find a $198 round-trip flight, however even without a lot of flexibility, there are good deals in the $240-$340 price range.</p><p>WOW Air is a budget airline, meaning passengers must always be careful to check extra fees for any services they may want, like checked baggage or in-flight meals. (But then, what airlines don't have you worrying about extra fees nowadays?)</p><p>Once you're in Iceland, there's lots to do — in the winter, you can <a href="" target="_blank">go hunting for the Northern Lights</a> or spend some time at the spa. In the summer, Iceland offers up to 21 hours of daylight, making a <a href="" target="_blank">road trip around the Ring Road</a> or a hike to a waterfall appealing activities.</p>
Categories: Travel

How Facebook’s New Lists Feature Can Help You Plan Your Next Trip

Travel and Leisure - Wed, 02/14/2018 - 14:00
<p>Facebook announced a new feature on Tuesday, allowing users to post lists to the News Feed.</p><p>The feature, which will be rolled out immediately, has more than a few useful applications for travelers.</p><p>For example, lists can be used to easily bullet out and share a round up of your dream destinations and <a href="" target="_blank">bucket list adventures</a>. You can then ask friends to weigh in on where you should travel next. Once you’ve selected a destination — <a href="" target="_blank">Paris</a>, for example — you can use a list to propose a detailed itinerary of your vacation. You could also create an index of all the places you want to eat, and call upon your followers to help you narrow down an otherwise unwieldy list of <em><a href="" target="_blank">boulangeries in Paris</a></em>.</p><p>According to Facebook, the lists feature also lets you clone other lists you see, making it easy to save and expand upon other travelers’ suggestions.</p><p>The social network also recommended using lists to collaborate on travel hacks (like how to score a <a href="" target="_blank">cheap flights</a> or get a hotel room upgrade). And, like status updates, lists can be personalized with colorful backgrounds and emojis.</p><p>To add a list to your feed, select the new list icon next to the options to insert a live video or photo.</p>
Categories: Travel

4 Easy Ways to Identify Planes in the Sky

Travel and Leisure - Wed, 02/14/2018 - 12:00
<p>As a traveler, living near Newark Liberty International Airport is convenient. It also means that the skies are almost constantly being crisscrossed by a dizzying number of aircraft.</p><p>It’s likely that a lot of these planes are operated by <a href="" target="_blank">United Airlines</a> — after all, the airline has its primary hub here, and operates nearly 400 daily flights out of this particular New York City-area airport. </p><p>But depending on the airplane’s angle and proximity to the ground, I may also be able to spot its livery (like its insignia or tail color), its silhouette (like the iconic, albeit rare Boeing 747 with the bulbous half-deck), or, at night, count the number of strobes on the plane’s wingtips.</p><p>Trying to determine what type of airplane is flying overhead is a popular sport for aviation enthusiasts — myself included. (There’s even a website dedicated to the art called <a href="" target="_blank"></a>.)</p><p>And if you really want to know the specifics of the planes flying by, there are apps and other high-tech tools for that.</p><p>Whether you want to play a plane-themed game of “I Spy” or just want to impress your fellow travelers, here are a few ways to sharpen your plane-spotting expertise.</p><h2>Familiarize Yourself With Aircraft…</h2><p>Airplanes flying at a low enough altitude might easily be distinguished by their livery, meaning you might be able to make out United’s globe-like logo, the bright red tail of a Virgin Atlantic plane, or <a href="" target="_blank">WOW Air</a>’s unmissable all-purple paint job.</p><p>If the plane is directly overhead, or a bit too far for livery to be useful, there are other ways to visually ID an airplane.</p><p>According to a <i><a href="" target="_blank">CNN Travel</a></i><a href="" target="_blank"> guide to plane spotting</a>, enthusiasts can use the number of engines and the width of a plane to get a better sense of the aircraft. Thin, skinny planes are probably narrow-body aircraft, like the Airbus A320 or Boeing 737. Thicker planes are probably wide-body models, like the Airbus A380 or the Boeing 777.</p><p>And at night, Kok Chwee Sim, an aviation photographer, told CNN that the number of strobe lights can be a dead giveaway. Two quick flashes, and you’re watching an Airbus; a single white blink, and it’s a Boeing.</p><h2>…and Your Surroundings.</h2><p>In the same way that northern New Jersey’s airspace is filled with United-operated planes, location is a great way to make an educated guess about what plane is flying overhead.</p><p>Hartsfield-Jackson airport in Atlanta, for example, is a <a href="" target="_blank">major Delta Air Lines hub</a>, while Dallas Love Field is the headquarters for Southwest Airlines.</p><h2>Download an App.</h2><p>At this particular moment in time, there are 13,724 aircraft in the skies. But the one flying over the <i>Travel + Leisure </i>office is a Delta Connection flight preparing to land at LaGuardia Airport in just a few minutes. It’s a Bombardier CRJ-900LR jet.</p><p>This is the kind of real-time information you can get by using <a href="" target="_blank">Flightradar24</a>, a website and mobile app that shows you all the planes in the sky, and provides detailed information about where they’re from and where they’re going, as well as surprising details like the aircraft type, registration number, altitude, and ground speed. (That Delta Connection flight? It’d be going about 285 miles per hour on the ground right now.)</p><p><a href="" target="_blank">FlightAware</a>, also available on either a desktop or mobile app, has a live flight tracking feature that functions very much like Flightradar24.</p><p>These apps and sites use navigation data from countries all over the world, including military and government agencies, in addition to radar data collected through <a href="" target="_blank">a global network of antennas that track airplanes overhead</a>. </p><h2>You Can Even Ask Your Virtual Assistant.</h2><p>It turns out Siri has a pretty good idea of what airplane is flying above you, too. <a href="" target="_blank">According to Johnny Jet</a>, all you have to do is ask her, “What plane is overhead?” and Siri will generate a list of all the planes flying nearby, including their airline, altitude, and aircraft type, among other interesting details.</p>
Categories: Travel

Bottega Veneta's New NYC-themed Bags Are Perfect for Your Next Urban Adventure

Travel and Leisure - Wed, 02/14/2018 - 11:30
<p><a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank">Bottega Veneta</a> has a big, beautiful new home at 740 Madison Avenue on Manhattan’s Upper East Side. Set on five floors, the Italian luxury goods and high fashion brand’s new Maison combines three 19th-century townhouses — some 15,000 square feet in all — that were originally private residences.</p><p>Shoppers here can visually gorge on the exquisite and extensive collection of women’s and men’s ready-to-wear, leather goods, eyewear, shoes, fragrance, and jewelry along with a home and furniture collection displayed on the top floor of the store. Set up to mirror an actual living space, this area is dubbed “The Apartment,” and will have the feeling of an elegant Manhattan home.</p><p><strong>Related: </strong><a href="" target="_blank">18 Handbags Celebrities Are Always Spotted With at the Airport</a></p><p>And speaking of <a href="" target="_blank">Manhattan</a>, the city is the inspiration for Bottega Veneta creative director Thomas Maier’s stellar 33-piece capsule collection of leather goods and phone cases for men and women called “Icons of New York,” subtly featuring recognizable New York City images including skyscrapers, subway maps, and the layout of streets and avenues. “It’s really an homage to the city,” Maier said.</p><p><strong>Related: </strong><a href="" target="_blank">The 17 Best Designer Luggage Brands</a></p><p>The collection, “Icons of New York,” will be exclusive to the Manhattan store through February and beginning in March available at Bottega Veneta boutiques in Brookfield Place, Americana Manhasset, Boston, and King of Prussia. <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank">The styles are available for pre-order now</a>.</p>
Categories: Travel

3 Ways to Make Space on Your Phone for All Your Vacation Photos

Travel and Leisure - Wed, 02/14/2018 - 11:00
<p>Few things are as frustrating as having a perfect travel photo ruined by a pop-up declaring that your phone’s storage is full.</p><p>There are quick, last minute fixes to this problem, of course — namely sifting through old photographs and videos and deleting a few you hope you’ll never want to look at again.</p><p>But for travelers who rely heavily on their smartphone as their primary camera, that’s simply not a sustainable solution.</p><p>Whether you’re toting <a href="" target="_blank">the latest iPhone</a> or the <a href="" target="_blank">Google Pixel 2</a>, there are a few easy ways to clear space on your phone before your next vacation.</p><h2>Get an External Storage Drive</h2><p>If you’re traveling with an iPhone from 2012 or later, you can easily solve your photo storage woes with <a data-ecommerce="true" href=";slotNum=8&amp;ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;linkCode=w50&amp;creativeASIN=B072WMZT3X&amp;tag=travandleis07-20&amp;ascsubtag=beee8bc8dd2491a09605ddc3fe38ddf8" target="_blank">the Bolt Duo</a> ($60) — a tiny memory stick that plugs into your lightning connector and holds up to 8,000 photos. There are <a href="" target="_blank">similar devices designed for phones</a> with USB C connectors from SanDisk and Samsung, too.</p><h2>Change Your Phone Settings</h2><p>Keep all your photos on your device, and still clear up your phone’s memory, by playing with your settings.</p><p>On iOS devices, go to “Photos &amp; Camera” under your settings. Select “<a href="" target="_blank">optimize iPhone storage</a>,” which will replace full-resolution photos and videos with optimized versions. All full-size media will be saved to the iCloud.</p><p>Travelers using Android devices can back up an unlimited number of photos using Google Photos, <a href="" target="_blank">according to CNET</a>, though they must be deleted from your device to free up space.</p><h2>Download an App</h2><p>Similarly, <a href="" target="_blank">the Avast Photo Space app</a>, which debuted in 2016, allows users to move high-quality images to online storage while replacing images on the mobile phone with a lower-quality file. Unlike native solutions, Avast lets you choose your preferred storage service (think: Dropbox or Google Drive). While the app is only available on iOS devices at this time, Android users can use Avast Cleanup to optimize storage.</p>
Categories: Travel

This Is the First Time This Century That February Hasn’t Had a Full Moon

Travel and Leisure - Wed, 02/14/2018 - 10:15
<p>After a series of exciting celestial events — a <a href="" target="_blank">cold moon</a>, <a href="" target="_blank">beaver moon</a>, and even <a href="" target="_blank">a super blue blood moon</a>, February's night skies are going to be noticeably dark. </p><p>That's because a full moon will not be visible in February for the first time this century.</p><p>December 2017, for example, saw the first of three super moons (when the moon is at its closest to Earth, so it appears slightly larger than usual in the evening sky). Then in January, there were two super full moons, the latter of which is called a blue moon because it was the second full moon in a single month. By chance, it also happened to coincide with a <a href="" target="_blank">total lunar eclipse</a>, which turned our satellite a deep red color.</p><h2>Why Is There No Full Moon in February?</h2><p>At 28 days (and still only 29 days every fourth leap year), February is the shortest calendar month. It takes 29.53 days for the moon to orbit Earth –– a so-called synodic month –– so if there's a full moon on January 31, there cannot be another until March 1.</p><p>And that's exactly what's happening this year. A February "Black Moon" occurs about four times per century.</p><h2>What Is the Full Moon Called in February?</h2><p>Typically, full moons in February are called <a href="" target="_blank">Snow Moons</a>, named for the winter snow (usually) blanketing the ground. Some North American tribes also called it the hunger moon and the storm moon.</p><p>But because of the lunar cycle, there will not be a snow moon in 2018.</p><p>Moon-gazers, however, should not feel shortchanged. The moon's ever-changing phases are the same as always, and a beautiful, thin crescent moon will be visible in the west after sunset on February 16, 17, and 18.</p><p>By February 28, the moon will be 97 percent illuminated — almost full to the untrained eye. The following day will be March's full Worm Moon, named for the seasonal return of earthworms to the ground in North America. It will be officially full at 7:51 p.m., Eastern Standard Time.</p><h2>When Was the Last Time February Had No Full Moon?</h2><p>This phenomenon last occurred in 1999 (when it was also preceded by a blue blood moon eclipse) and, before that, in 1980 and 1961.</p><p>It works out that every 19 years, there is no full moon during the month of February. This 19 year cycle is called the Metonic Cycle, which sees the exact phase of the moon occurring on more or less the same date at 19 year intervals.</p><p>Whenever there is no full moon in February, both January and March have two full moons each — the second of which is popularly called a blue moon.</p><h2>When Is The Next February Black Moon?</h2><p>According to the Metonic Cycle, 2037 will be the next time February has no full moon. That year, both January and March will contain two full moons each. Just as in 2018, the second full moon in January 2037 will be a super blue blood moon eclipse.</p><p>Even more rare than this February's black moon is when there is no full moon in a 29-day February, during a leap year. That <a href="" target="_blank">last happened in 1608, and won’t happen again until 2572</a>.</p>
Categories: Travel

This Resort in the Bahamas Will Pay You to Hang With Flamingos All Day

Travel and Leisure - Wed, 02/14/2018 - 10:09
<p>The recently opened <a href="" target="_blank">Baha Mar resort</a>, in the <a href="" target="_blank">Bahamas</a>, is hiring a CFO. But you don’t have to be a finance expert to apply.</p><p>The CFO at this <a href="" target="_blank">$4.2-billion</a> Nassau resort will actually be the Chief Flamingo Officer, responsible for supervising the resort’s flamingos that, <a href="" target="_blank"><em>Cosmopolitan</em> reported</a>, will arrive this spring. The title is interchangeable with Avian Manager.</p><p>While the position is open to applicants from all over the world, this position is not simply for flamingo fans.</p><p><strong>Related: </strong><a href="" target="_blank">What It's Like to Swim With Flamingos in Aruba</a></p><p>Successful applicants will have a degree in zoology or comparable field experience, a minimum of five years working with exotic birds (flamingos, specifically), at least one year of experience as a supervisor or manager, and many other related skills.</p><p>Baha Mar’s Chief Flamingo Officer will be responsible for caring for the property’s “flamingo collections,” and for creating a “Beach Sanctuary experience that will leave a lasting impression on guests,” according to the official job listing.</p><p>The CFO will also oversee guest interactions with flamingos and “ensure guests are ‘wowed’ by Baha Mar’s animal exhibits.” He or she will report directly to the Avian Curator.</p><p><strong>Related: </strong><a href="" target="_blank">On the Bucket List: Swimming with Pigs in the Bahamas</a></p><p>When the flamingos arrive at their glitzy new home, <em>Cosmopolitan</em> reported, they will be housed in a so-called Flamingo Mansion with a mix of water and land elements.</p><p>Baha Mar will accept applications for <a href=";position_id=3362&amp;job_id=0" target="_blank">this position</a>, which was posted in early January, until late February.</p><p>Travelers who would rather hang with flamingos instead of working with them can visit while staying at the Bahamian resort complex. In addition to an already opened Grand Hyatt and SLS, the property’s Rosewood resort section will open this spring.</p>
Categories: Travel

5 Things to Do in Palm Springs Instead of Sitting at the Pool

Travel and Leisure - Wed, 02/14/2018 - 10:01
<p>While much of the nation (and <a href="" target="_blank">the world</a>) is in the midst of a cold, harsh winter, the desert oasis of <a href="" target="_blank">Palm Springs, California</a> is sitting pretty with an average daily temperature hovering right around 75 degrees and sunny.</p><p>Yes, the palm trees, warm desert breeze, and poolside cocktails are indeed calling your name this winter, beckoning you to come for a long weekend from <a href="" target="_blank">Los Angeles</a>, or an even longer stay from far off places. But once you land in paradise, hold off on sliding onto a lounge chair, because the <a href="" target="_blank">Greater Palm Springs</a> area, which includes Coachella, Indio, Palm Springs, and more, has much to offer beyond the pool.</p><h2>Take a Jeep Tour Through the Desert</h2><p>Palm Springs may look like an arid desert landscape, but there’s more to this view than meets the eye. Sit back in an open air jeep tour with <a href="" target="_blank">Desert Adventures</a> and learn a thing or two about Palm Springs. Things like: After tourism, its second largest industry is agriculture. (Where do you think all those <a href="" target="_blank">yummy dates</a> you eat come from?) And did you know that Palm Springs sits right along the San Andreas Fault? Desert Adventures will take you right up to the fault line so you can see it for yourself. Along the way you’ll learn about the different flora and fauna in the area and maybe run into a cute rabbit, owl, or field mouse sitting along your route. Just keep an eye out for rattlesnakes while you’re there as they too call the desert home.</p><h2>Ride the Palm Springs Aerial Tramway</h2><p>The <a href="" target="_blank">Palm Springs Aerial Tramway</a>, which has been in operation since Sept. 12, 1963, is a favorite among locals and tourists alike for good reason: It’s super freaking cool.</p><p>According to the Tramway, an estimated 18 million people have traveled up the 10-minute, 2.5-mile ride since its opening. Each guest begins at at the Valley Station at the base (elevation 2,643 feet) and ends at the Mountain Station (elevation 8,516 feet). There, they are met with breathtaking views of all nine of Greater Palm Springs’ cities. Of course, beyond the views the top also offers guests the chance to eat at two restaurants, grab a drink at the cocktail lounge, or head out for more than 50 miles of nature trails surrounding the tram.</p><p>If you choose to add this to your Palm Springs adventure it may be best to reserve your tickets ahead of time so you can ensure you make it up and down during the timeframe you want. <a href="" target="_blank">Roundtrip tickets</a> are $25.95, or you can grab an annual pass for $160.</p><h2>Check Out the Palm Springs Art Museum</h2><p>The desert is home to many excellent artists, all of whom are worth checking out at the <a href="" target="_blank">Palm Springs Art Museum</a>. There, you’ll find a plethora of worthwhile permanent exhibits like their modern art room with items from around the globe and Native American art from around the American West. The museum also has some excellent rotating exhibits including their current showing of “Having a Ball” by Michael Childers. The exhibit showcases Childers’ photographs from Andy Warhols’ <i>Interview Magazine</i> and include<i> </i>Childers’ personal photographs of Warhol from the 1970s. So when you’re done with the sun, or need a little culture before cocktail hour, swing through, check out the art, and gather a little inspiration for <a href="" target="_blank">dinner conversations</a>.</p><h2>Race BMWs Like a Pro</h2><p>If you’re looking for an adrenaline rush in the desert look no further than the <a href="" target="_blank">BMW Performance Center</a>. There, you can get behind the wheel of a brand new BMW or Mini Cooper and race around the tracks, including a black lake wet track and a multi-configuration course with hairpin turns, high-speed straights, and a 300-foot, polished concrete skidpad, all while getting tips from the professionals. The staff includes Adam Seaman, a professional drift racer who also worked as a stuntman on "Drive," and Christopher Hill, a stunt driver on "Hot Rod" who was the runner-up on season three of "GT Academy." Just make sure to book your driving experience well in advance as classes tend to fill up for the one- or two-day events fast.</p><h2>Take a Walk Through Sunnylands</h2><p>In the middle of the paradise that is Palm Springs sits another oasis: <a href="" target="_blank">Sunnylands</a>.</p><p>The insanely beautiful property was established via a trust set up by Walter and Leonore Annenberg to “address serious issues facing the nation and the world community.” The couple, Sunnylands’ site explains, envisioned the space as a place where intimate and solution-driven meetings could take place as they had while the couple was alive. In the estate's history, Prince Charles, President Obama, President Reagan, and more world leaders have passed through.</p><p>If you’re on your own (you know, without a president or a prince in tow) you’re still more than welcome to visit the estate’s gardens for free Thursdays to Sundays. On the property, you can view the magnificent art left by the Annenbergs and tour the pristine, desert-friendly gardens. And make sure to check the Sunnylands website before you visit as you may even be able to join a bird-watching tour or a free yoga class on the lawn. It’s also totally OK to just go zen out in the garden alone for a bit. Nobody is there to judge you.</p>
Categories: Travel

Travelers Call for Bermuda Boycott Over Same-sex Marriage Ban

Travel and Leisure - Wed, 02/14/2018 - 09:26
<p>Some tourists have called for a boycott of the <a href="" target="_blank">island of Bermuda</a> after legislators passed a law repealing same-sex marriage.</p><p>The repeal was a worldwide first, and it comes less than a year after marriage equality was legalized on the island, <a href="" target="_blank"><i>The Guardian </i>reported</a>.</p><p>LGBTQ activist groups have slammed the decision as a move in the wrong direction, and travelers have taken to Twitter to criticize the decision, with <a href="" target="_blank">some even calling for a boycott</a> of tourism to the island.</p><p><a href="" target="_blank">Bermuda</a> legislators repealed the Supreme Court decision that had made same-sex marriage legal by passing the Domestic Partnership Act last week, which does away with same-sex marriage but maintains some civil protections for domestic partnerships. The Domestic Partnership Act comes after an overwhelming number of Bermudians voted against same-sex marriage in a referendum in 2016. The Minister of Home Affairs Walton Brown cited pressure from a significant group of conservative residents.</p><p>"The act is intended to strike a fair balance between two currently irreconcilable groups in Bermuda, by restating that marriage must be between a male and a female while at the same time recognizing and protecting the rights of same-sex couples," Brown said, according to the Associated Press.</p><p>The decision has put some cruise ships in a precarious position, as couples of all orientations often choose to get married during a cruise. Cruise lines must abide by the laws of wherever a ship is registered, regardless of where the vessel travels, and both Princess and Carnival have ships registered to Bermuda that will no longer be able to perform same-sex marriages anywhere in the world, <a href="" target="_blank"><em>CNBC</em> reported</a>.</p><p>Tourism accounts for a significant portion of Bermuda's economy: The 693,000 tourists the island hosted in 2017 spent a combined $431 million, local news outlet <a href="" target="_blank">the <em>Royal Gazette</em> reported</a>. Cruise spending in particular rose by 7.6 percent last year.</p><p>"It's unfortunate, but I make my voice heard through my wallet whether at home or in my travels," Ryan Bennington, a married gay man who has visited Bermuda more than 30 times, told CNBC.</p>
Categories: Travel

Help Romeo, the World's Loneliest Frog, Find His Juliet by Valentine's Day

Travel and Leisure - Wed, 02/14/2018 - 08:31
<p>A <a href="" target="_blank">Sehuencas water frog</a> named Romeo at the Cochabamba Natural History Museum in Bolivia has been a bachelor for 10 long years. It seems this poor, little Romeo seems to be missing a Juliet.</p><p>Nicknamed the “Loneliest Frog in the World,” the childless frog has been crying out a mating call for several years now. A task that has proven to be utterly futile.</p><p>Now, the museum is trying to raise funds to search high and low along Bolivian streams to find female Sehuencas water frogs, even if they’re little tadpoles. The reason why the museum is suddenly taking on this matchmaking task is because Romeo is the last of his kind, and his species only live to be about 15 years old.</p><p>“We don't want him to lose hope," said Arturo Muñoz, a conservation scientist associated with the Global Wildlife Conservation to <a href="" target="_blank">AFP</a>.</p><p>The Global Wildlife Conservation teamed up with to <a href="" target="_blank">make him a profile</a> in order to raise awareness and funds for his search for love.</p><p>“Not to start this off super heavy or anything, but I'm literally the last of my species,” says “Romeo” in his profile. He also says he wants to find his “one and only Juliet.” It’s probably the most adorable dating profile you’ve ever seen, including Romeo’s picture, which features his big, froggy eyes.</p><p>On the profile is also a link to donate to Romeo’s cause, which leads to the <a href="" target="_blank">Global Wildlife Conservation website</a>.</p><p>The organization aims to <a href="" target="_blank">raise $15,000 by Valentine’s Day</a> in order to get scientists into the field, sending 10 expeditions to the streams and rivers.</p><p>Hesam Hosseini, CEO of Match, told <a href="" target="_blank">the <em>Independent</em></a>, “Finding a match for Romeo is a new challenge for us, but in the interest of saving an entire species, we gladly and confidently accept.”</p><p>If the search is unsuccessful, Muñoz does not rule out cloning as an option, according to AFP.</p><p>“The chances are decreasing and decreasing, and we need to do something urgent now,” he told the <em>Independent</em>.</p>
Categories: Travel

This Japanese Island Paradise Has Subtropical Forests, Pristine White Beaches, and a Surprising Love of Americana

Travel and Leisure - Wed, 02/14/2018 - 08:14
<p>Okinawa is so lush that buildings and rivers are often obscured by its profusion of greenery. Along the coasts, tourists swim in aquamarine waters. All this natural beauty may surprise anyone who associates Okinawa with World War II, when invading Americans bombed its terraced fields and wild forest down to the dirt.</p><p>Okinawa is the largest of the 160 islands, most of them unpopulated, that arc between <a href="" target="_blank">the Japanese mainland</a> and Taiwan, collectively forming the country's southernmost prefecture. The archipelago, also named Okinawa, was an independent kingdom until Japan overthrew its monarch in the late 19th century. An era of U.S. military rule followed World War II, with Americans bulldozing homes and farms to build bases, which remained after the islands were returned to Japan in 1972. Many locals continue to protest their presence.</p><p>Traveling the roughly 70 miles south to north along the narrow main island, I experienced what brings more and more visitors to Okinawa: subtropical beauty, a leisurely pace, and a rich mix of indigenous Okinawan, mainland Japanese, and American influences. Of course, the island is also suffused with its troubled past. The Battle of Okinawa wiped out up to a third of the civilian population. The haunting <a href="" target="_blank">Himeyuri Peace Museum</a><em>, </em>at the island's southern tip, recounts the three months of horror through the story of local schoolgirls conscripted to be nurses for Japanese soldiers. Nearby, <a href="" target="_blank">Peace Memorial Park</a> sits on manicured grounds in the area where the fighting culminated. The park's museum <em>(</em> chronicles the war in chilling detail.</p><p>I was shaken by these sites, so a meal at <a href="" target="_blank">Yama-no-chaya Rakusui </a><em>(prix fixe lunch $12),</em> a short drive away, felt like a salve. I sipped guava juice and ate chewy peanut tofu, sitting at a window overlooking the sea. Families hunted for shells in the tide pools below.</p><img alt="Yama-No-Chana Rakusui vegetarian restaurant in Okinawa, Japan "src=""><p>The 27-year American occupation wasn't easy for Okinawans, who struggled with poverty, loss of land, and a lack of constitutional rights. Knowing this makes the pockets of quirky Americana that dot the island all the more baffling. The 1950s and 60s seem to be seared into the collective memory as a golden age of classic cars and Coca-Cola.</p><p>On the coast overlooking the East China Sea, <a href="" target="_blank">American Village</a> is a theme-park version of the U.S. where visitors can ride a Ferris wheel and snap photos with a human-size Statue of Liberty. The nearby American American <em>(3-6-6 Mihama, Chatan-Cho; entrées $10–$20),</em> owned by a middle-aged Okinawan couple, mimics a 1950s hole-in-the-wall diner, right down to the canned carrots and peas.</p><img alt="The American Village, in Okinawa, Japan "src=""><p>"For Okinawa, the U.S. is an enigmatic figure," said Hideki Yoshikawa, an anthropologist who is fighting to stop construction of a base near his home. On the one hand, he explained, the United States represents oppression. On the other, it's a country founded on democracy and freedom — the same ideals activists like him struggle for.</p><p>I considered this as I visited <a href="" target="_blank">Minatogawa Stateside Town</a>. Tucked away amid modern apartment buildings in the city of Urasoe, the neighborhood of boxy, concrete houses was built for American military families. Over the past decade, a private developer turned the residences into shops and restaurants, with signs that depict drive-in waitresses and old-time Chevys. The quiet streets are named after American states.</p><p>On Virginia Street, I ate tender grilled tuna and vegetables at <a href="" target="_blank">Limpid</a> <em>(prix fixe from $26)</em>, where chef Yutaka Wakabayashi prepares local ingredients using French techniques. On Florida Street, I read century-old postcards at the vintage shop <a href="" target="_blank">American Wave</a>. Owner Chris Towe, one of Okinawa's many American expats, first came to the island as a tourist, then came back for good because the laid-back atmosphere reminded him of his native Kentucky. With his shop, he tries to present the "good parts" of the U.S., he says — "the past, basically." The present, with its political headlines? "I don't want to tackle that."</p><img alt="Food from Limpid restaurant in Okinawa, Japan "src=""><p>With its white sand and coconut trees, Okinawa's western coast checks all the beach-vacation boxes. Massive new properties like the <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank">Hilton Okinawa Chatan Resort</a> <em>(doubles from $350),</em> next door to American Village, have opened in recent years, along with mom-and-pop options, like the charming two-room <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank">Wassa Wassa</a> <em>(doubles from $237).</em> At <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank">Okuma Private Beach &amp; Resort</a> <em>(doubles from $265),</em> my room needed some updating, but the large swath of beach bordered a bowl of blue-green ocean.</p><p>Travelers often stick to the coastal areas, which means that the Yanbaru, Okinawa's northerly expanse of dense evergreen forest, remains off the radar. The U.S. Marine Corps controls a chunk of these woods, but I didn't sense its presence during my stay at the <a href="" target="_blank">Yanbaru Discovery Forest</a> <em>(doubles from $110),</em> a former military camp that's now a cozy lodge with environmental education facilities. I hiked among the trees without seeing another person. Instead, I spotted orange beetles clustered on wide leaves; a tusked wild boar; and the endangered Okinawan rail, a flightless bird with bright-red feet and striped plumage.</p><p>That evening I soaked in the center's open-air bath, turned more curative with the addition of an enormous herbal tea bag. The drone of cicadas rose and fell in waves, and puffs of mist lifted off the treetops like campfire smoke. I thought about how landscapes are continually remade, even when the past refuses to fade away.</p>
Categories: Travel

Hotel Offers Self-assemble Four-poster Beds for Extra Romance on Valentine's Day

Travel and Leisure - Wed, 02/14/2018 - 08:00
<p>Romance is all about going the extra mile. And sometimes that extra mile requires some self-assembly.</p><p>U.K. budget hotel chain <a href="" target="_blank">easyHotel</a> is offering couples at their Croydon, England, property a “self-assemble four-poster addition” to its beds as a special promotion for <a href="" target="_blank">Valentine’s Day</a>.</p><p>For £5 (about $7 USD), the four-poster addition, when fully installed, forms a structure that is topped with a vinyl pink canopy and orange chiffon-like curtains. It <a href="" target="_blank">looks a bit more like a tent</a> than a romantic bed canopy, but it’s the thought that counts.</p><p>According to the <a href="" target="_blank"><em>Daily Mail</em></a>, in order to fit the canopy over the bed for Valentine’s Day bliss, the kit has an expandable metal frame that the curtains simply slip over. So, it’s less like putting together an IKEA bed. Which is probably best, for romance's sake.</p><p>The hotel is also offering “bedside bubbly,” which is actually just a bottle of Fanta, and Terry's Chocolate Orange — this is a budget hotel, after all.</p><p><strong>Related:</strong> <a href="" target="_blank">Man Sues Airline for Serving Sparkling Wine Instead of Real Champagne</a></p><p>“There's no beginning to the steps we will take to add extra romantic touches to our guests' experience at easyHotel,” Jorge Rodriguez, the “romantic experience coordinator” at easyHotel, said in a <a href=";region=3&amp;m_id=Y!Y!vY!_rY!~A&amp;w_id=34216&amp;news_id=2031018" target="_blank">statement</a>. “With a little imagination and a bit of elbow grease, guests can transform their rooms into romantic havens. This, combined with the bedside bottle of bubbly, will no doubt be irresistible for some.”</p><p>Rooms at easyHotel begin at £19.99 (just over $27) per night, which might be the most romantic perk of all, considering Americans collectively will spend <a href="" target="_blank">$19.6 billion on Valentine’s Day</a>.</p>
Categories: Travel

Save 30% on a Six-night Tour of London and the Cotswolds from Authentic Vacations

Travel and Leisure - Wed, 02/14/2018 - 07:59
<p><em>T+L launched Operation Vacation to inspire workers to use their days off and get away, offering exclusive travel discounts as incentive. For the latest deals on hotels, airfare, cruises, and trip packages, visit <a href="" target="_blank"><strong></strong></a></em></p><p>England: 30 percent off a six-night tour of London and the Cotswolds from <a href=";utm_medium=partner&amp;utm_campaign=operationvacation&amp;utm_content=england" target="_blank">Authentic Vacations</a>, specialists in accessible, customized tours of the UK and Ireland.</p><p>The London, Bath and Stonehenge Tour includes:</p><p>*Six nights in city hotels, guest houses, and bed &amp; breakfasts in London and southern England (Bath, Chipping Campden, and Windsor)</p><p>*A rental car for the duration of your stay, including unlimited mileage and taxes</p><p>*Six breakfasts</p><p>*Expert advice and a travel helpline</p><p>*Highlights include visits to Stonehenge, Oxford University, the ancient Roman baths at Bath and Buckingham Palace, Big Ben, and the London Tower</p><p>Original Price: From $1,398 per person (or $233 per night)</p><p><strong>T + L Price:</strong> From $998 per person (or $166 per night) book by March 31.</p><p>Booking details: <a href=";utm_medium=partner&amp;utm_campaign=operationvacation&amp;utm_content=england" target="_blank">Use promo code T&amp;L</a>; a $100 deposit is required.</p><p>Availability: Blackout dates may apply.</p>
Categories: Travel

This Company Wants to Pay You To Spend Four Months Recording Epic Cycling Trips Across Europe and Africa

Travel and Leisure - Wed, 02/14/2018 - 07:01
<p>If you’re looking for a way to get paid while having time to explore the world, this <a href="" target="_blank">internship from TDA Global Cycling</a> just might be it. </p><p>The cycling company, which offers tours in more than 80 countries, is looking for a videographer to send on a four-month, all-expenses-paid internship to document two of their tours across <a href="" target="_blank">Europe</a> and <a href="" target="_blank">Africa</a>.</p><p>The candidate will journey with cyclists, producing videos of the locations they cross along the way. </p><p>The journey will kick off on Sep. 1 in Barcelona, <a href="" target="_blank">Spain</a>, where you’ll be traveling alongside the cyclists taking part in the company’s <a href="" target="_blank">Trans-Europa tour</a> as they make their way across Spain and Portugal to Lisbon.</p><img alt="spain cycling "src=""><p>From there, you’ll fly to Casablanca, where you’ll join the cyclists taking part in the <a href="" target="_blank">West Africa en Vélo</a> tour and spend two months with them as they make their way to Cape Coast, Ghana.</p><p>While you’ll have the ability to set your own schedule and production times throughout the trip, the company’s founder and former filmmaker, Henry Gold, will also be joining in the second leg of the journey to provide professional feedback for your recordings.</p><p>The company will pay for all flights, visas, travel insurance, vaccinations, food, and accommodations and provide additional shooting gear that includes GoPros, drones, and smartphones.</p><p>The company will also provide up to $1,000 in gear expenses, though applicants are expected to be able to supply a tent and camping gear, bikes, a DSLR camera, and a laptop while on the road.</p><p>Candidates must be at least 18 years old, have a valid passport, and have experience in video production and editing to apply. Knowing French is also a plus, though not a requirement.</p><p>To apply, you’ll need to enter a short video explaining why you deserve the position by June 1. The applicant will be chosen by July 1 before starting the journey on Sep. 1 and wrapping up on Dec. 31.</p>
Categories: Travel

Trump's Budget Proposal Could Cost Travelers up to $2 Billion

Travel and Leisure - Wed, 02/14/2018 - 06:45
<p>President Donald Trump revealed his budget proposal Monday, with provisions both to raise Transportation Security Administration fees and to sell off certain federal airports.</p><p>The proposal, which included a huge increase in infrastructure spending, called to raise <a href="" target="_blank">TSA</a><a href="" target="_blank"> fees</a> for each one-way ticket to $6.60 from $5.60 starting Oct. 1. Trump has previously made the same proposal before, and Congress did not support the idea. The proposal would cost passengers an additional $2 billion annually, according to airline estimates.</p><p>Airlines for America, a trade group representing the largest domestic airlines, slammed the proposal, warning of the costs to passengers and to business growth for the airlines.</p><p>“Increasing taxes in any form will add to the cost of flying for millions of Americans, curtail job growth and limit the options small and medium communities currently enjoy,” Airlines for America President and CEO Nicholas E. Calio <a href="" target="_blank">said in a statement</a>.</p><p>Airports have shown more support for <a href="" target="_blank">raising fees</a>, saying the hike would be in line with inflation and would also allow them to pursue renovation projects.</p><p>“Lifting the outdated federal cap on airport user fees would allow airports to utilize local dollars for investment immediately and to leverage those resources through bonds to further multiply their benefit into the future – 100% consistent with what the president has outlined today," Todd Hauptli, CEO of the American Association of Airport Executives, <a href="" target="_blank">told <em>USA Today</em>.</a></p><p><a href="" target="_blank">The budget proposal</a> also suggested selling off several federal assets, including Washington’s National and Dulles International airports. The effect of those sales on travelers — if the budget proposal passes Congress — is still unclear, as it will depend on whether state or private entities purchase the airports.</p><p>Trump's infrastructure plan, which was a large part of his 2016 candidacy, proposes spending $200 billion in investment with the goal of generating $1.5 trillion in investment. The plan has been <a href="" target="_blank">widely criticized</a>, particularly for the fact that it relies on private companies to invest in public works in a way that many experts have claimed is unlikely to happen.</p>
Categories: Travel

Reese Witherspoon Says These Are the Three Qualities That Got Her Where She Is

Travel and Leisure - Wed, 02/14/2018 - 06:36
<p><a href="" target="_blank">Reese Witherspoon</a> is having a great year.</p><p>The <a href="" target="_blank"><em>A Wrinkle in Time</em></a> and <em>Big Little Lies</em> star has carved out a number of opportunities for herself and other women in Hollywood. She started her own production company, <a href="" target="_blank">Hello Sunshine</a>, and a book club on Instagram while continuing to run her lifestyle brand <a href="" target="_blank">Draper James</a> and act alongside stars like Nicole Kidman and <a href="" target="_blank">Oprah</a>. </p><p>In an interview with <em><a href="" target="_blank">Marie Claire</a></em>, Witherspoon shared the main qualities that got her to such a successful point. The three aspects of her personality she credits are: She is persistent, she has a sense of humor and likes to have fun, and she remains unaffected by people's harsh words.</p><p>"I tend not to internalize other people's criticism, and I think that's a really important thing for being an actor because you get a lot of criticism," the <a href="" target="_blank">mother of three</a> said. </p><p>In the same interview – which took place during her cover shoot – the 41-year-old also divulged to the magazine that her easiest career decision was to work with Nicole Kidman and that she would love to see more women in Hollywood in positions of leadership.</p>
Categories: Travel

You Can Go Golfing With a Goat at This Oregon Ranch

Travel and Leisure - Wed, 02/14/2018 - 06:31
<p>There’s a special bond between golfer and caddie — an efficient, amicable pair that work their way across the green together. But for those who prefer the company of animals to people, a golf course in Oregon will let you use a <a href="" target="_blank">goat</a> instead.</p><p><a href="" target="_blank">Silvies Valley Ranch</a> in Seneca, Oregon will open a course this summer where golfers can take one of the ranch’s American range goats out as a caddie. Each goat will wear a vest loaded with all the gear golfers will need while on the green.</p><p>The seven-hole course, named “McVeigh’s Gauntlet,” is a “fun, care-free course” meant to “help players settle bets and test their accuracy,” according to the ranch.</p><p><strong>Related: </strong><a href="" target="_blank">Oregon's Goat Yoga Is So Popular That There Are 900 People on the Waiting List</a></p><p><strong>Related:</strong> <a href="" target="_blank">You Can Take Dance Classes With Alpacas at This Canadian Farm</a></p><p>The head caddy, named Bruce LeGoat, will lead a team of four goats across the green. They will be available at no additional charge, the ranch confirmed to <i>Travel + Leisure</i>.</p><p>“We’re truly redefining both goat and golf operations at the ranch,” Dr. Scott Campbell, veterinarian and owner of The Retreat &amp; Links at Silvies Valley Ranch, said in a press release. “Can you think of another course where its caddies were literally born, raised and fully educated on-property? We will get you a caddie who really knows the course and won’t give you any bad advice – and they work for peanuts!”</p><p>Each goat will wear a custom pack, loaded with drinks, balls, tees, and a couple of clubs (golfers won’t need more for the par three and four course).</p><p>If, after a round of golf, visitors still want more goat time, the ranch also offers a “goat herding” experience where guests tour the goat facilities, play with the kids, and watch them herd across the plains.</p>
Categories: Travel

A Mischievous Pony Tried to Bite Prince Harry in Scotland

Travel and Leisure - Wed, 02/14/2018 - 06:02
<p>This wasn’t quite the warm welcome Prince Harry and Meghan Markle were expecting.</p><p>The <a href="" target="_blank">soon-to-be-wed</a> royal couple arrived at Edinburgh Castle in Edinburgh, Scotland, on Tuesday, surrounded by huge, cheering crowds. The couple shook hands, said hello, and greeted the the Royal Regiment of Scotland and their little mascot, a Shetland pony named Cruachan IV.</p><p>It seemed Cruachan IV was not as pleased to see Prince Harry.</p><p><strong>Related:</strong> <a href="" target="_blank">All the Royal Traditions to Expect at Prince Harry and Meghan Markle's Wedding</a></p><p>As the couple were greeted by Frank Ross, Edinburgh's Lord Lieutenant and Lord Provost, who represented the city, Prince Harry took a moment to give Cruachan IV a pat on the nose. A moment later, the pony, clearly unsatisfied, went for a nip at Prince Harry’s hand.</p><img alt="Prince Harry And Meghan Markle Visit Edinburgh "src=""><p>Luckily, the pony missed Harry’s fingers.</p><p>From the video tweeted by Kensington Palace, it looks like Cruachan IV means no harm. Perhaps he was hoping Prince Harry had a snack hidden up his sleeve.</p><p>According to <a href="" target="_blank">the <em>Telegraph</em></a>, the mischievous, nine-year-old pony also tried to eat the Queen's posy bouquet during her visit to Stirling castle. Just like Prince Harry, the Queen was too fast for him.</p><p>Pony Major Mark Wilkinson, who handles the mascot, said “[Prince Harry and Markle] said it was lovely to meet him.”</p>
Categories: Travel

Meghan Markle's Latest It-bag Defies Royal Tradition, but You'll Want One Anyway

Travel and Leisure - Wed, 02/14/2018 - 06:00
<p>On Tuesday, Prince Harry and Meghan Markle made their way to Edinburgh, Scotland as part of <a href="" target="_blank">Meghan’s larger introduction to the United Kingdom</a>.</p><p>There, the pair was greeted by throngs of well-wishers, including a Shetland Pony named Cruachan IV who actually has quite the royal history. According to the <a href="" target="_blank"><i>Daily Mail</i>,</a> Cruachan attempted to eat the Queen's posy during a previous visit to Stirling castle — and this time he <a href="" target="_blank">tried to nip Prince Harry</a>.</p><p>While greeting fans the couple of course looked as stylish as ever, with Meghan rocking a Burberry tartan coat (a similar style is currently <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank">on sale at Nordstrom</a>) with trousers by Veronica Beard. Though, it was her bag that garnered the most attention as it once again proved that Meghan plans to buck royal traditions forever.</p><p>You see, during her visit Meghan chose not to hold a clutch, which has become an <a href="" target="_blank">unofficial royal fashion rule</a> for people like the Queen and Kate Middleton. Instead, Meghan chose to wear a cross-body bag by a local Scottish brand, <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank">Strathberry</a>, for her visit. This way both of her hands remained free to greet fans — and even pet that feisty pony.</p><p>According to <a href="" target="_blank"><i>Town &amp; Country</i></a>, the bag Meghan carried is known as the Strathberry East/West bag in a deep, forest green shade. And, you guessed it, the color is already sold out on the brand’s site. However, you can still get the same style from <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank">Strathberry for $660</a>.</p><p>This isn’t the first time you’ve seen Meghan carrying the brand either. She also carried a Strathberry tote for her first official royal engagement in Nottingham. That <a href="" target="_blank">style</a><a href="" target="_blank"> too sold out immediately.</a></p><p>"My prediction is that Meghan is going to be our new Diana,” Una Mallon, a mother of four, 47, from Belfast, told the <i>Daily Mail</i> after catching a glimpse of the couple. “A wee touch of Meghan adds a bit of sparkle. She's already working behind the scenes as she's doing secret visits. She is passionate about her causes and I think Harry and her are going to be the perfect team. I always have a soft spot for <a href="" target="_blank">Kate and William</a> but I think together the boys are doing a great job and their partners show great support.”</p>
Categories: Travel