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February 22, 2011

32 Inches in 24 Hours at Grand Targhee

By Lacy Morris

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Hitting the powder room at Grand Targhee Resort, Wyoming (Powder Day Photography)

Midwesterners woke to canceled flights, snowed-in cars, and ice-coated roads, and while similar hazards persist further west throughout the Tetons, skiers at Grand Targhee have a more optimistic outlook on the Presidents' Day weekend storm that crippled much of the U.S. Within 24 hours more than 32 inches of perfect, dry powder had blanketed Targhee. The storm arrived Sunday, February 20, bringing the two-day storm total to 41 inches. Current snow depth is 126 inches and season-to-date snowfall is approaching 400 inches. With more snow in the forecast this week, this could be one of the best Presidents' Day ski weeks in history at the Teton resort.

"There's still a chance to get a room up here this week," said Shannon Brooks Hamby, communications director at Grand Targhee Resort. "If you were waiting to see what the conditions were like, it doesn't get much better than this. Grab your snorkel and come on up."

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Related Topics: Skiing & Snowboarding · Travel News

February 09, 2011

Royal Honeymoon Guessing Games

Lillies bloom near a garden shed on the Isles of Scilly. We assume the royals will have nicer digs. (Jim F. Bleak/Wikimedia Commons)

Let the guessing games begin: Where are Prince William and Kate Middleton heading on their honeymoon? British and American news reports cite vague rumors that the royal couple is planning a honeymoon close to home, possibly in the Isles of Scilly off the southwestern coast of Cornwall, where William took a vacation with Prince Charles, Princess Diana, and his brother, Harry, in 1989. The reporting in all the stories is rather light, but quotes attributed to an aide in this Daily Mail story say that Kate and William are sensitive to the economic toil many Brits are facing and don't want to take an expensive luxury honeymoon while others are losing their jobs. Which is a shame for tourism on several island paradises (early speculation had them going anywhere from the Seychelles to Australia to Bora Bora), but actually fits with history quite well. Charles and Di spent their honeymoon at the Royal Family's Scottish estate in Balmoral in addition to a cruise aboard the HMS Britannia, while Queen Elizabeth spent her honeymoon at the estate at Birkhall. There's no royal residence on the Scilly Isles, though there are several resorts, including Star Castle, a one-time fort built in the late 1500s that's been renovated into one of Britian's top hotels.

If you're planning a honeymoon close to home or far away, get started with our Top Ten Budget Honeymoon Vacations or best Romantic Resorts. If you want more info on the royal wedding, check out our Westminster Abbey Photo Gallery.

Have an opinion on where William and Kate should go on their honeymoon? Let us know in the comments below.

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November 15, 2010 Unveils Free Travel Apps for iPhone and Android

By awayblog

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Orbitz-mobile-app, an online travel agency (OTA) and's parent company, has just released a pair of free travel apps for iPhone and Android. To date, it's the first native application for iPhone and Android phones that allows customers to shop and book a comprehensive selection of air, car rental, and hotel options. Other cool features include offline access to your "My Trips" portfolio, flight-status alerts, and real-time airport updates. You can also browse the app for available hotels near your current location automatically. Download it now and bring the power of mobile travel booking right to your fingertips, whether you're planning six months in advance or need the best-priced hotel near you now after that freak snowstorm shuts things down. Oh, and did we mention it's free?

Download the Orbitz app for iPhone
Download the Orbitz app for Android

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Related Topics: Free Stuff · From Around the Web · Travel News · Travel Tips

Passports with Purpose 2010: Donate and Win Great Travel Prizes!

Smiling women in rural India (mckaysavage/Flickr)

Today marks the kickoff of my favorite holiday fundraiser, Passports with Purpose. Started three years ago by a group of travel bloggers who wanted to give back to the world which they cover and explore, this year's online event is seeking to raise $50,000 to help build an entire village in southern India for that country's impoverished caste of "untouchables."

How can you help? Donate any amount in $10 increments to the fundraising effort, which will not only go toward the work of this year's charitable partner, LAFTI, but also put your name in the hat to win a swag bag of great travel prizes, including airfare, gear, consumer electronics, and more. The prizes have all been donated by members of the travel community, including two Delta flight vouchers for round-trip travel anywhere in the contiguous U.S. states and Canada from! Any other questions about PwP, feel free to drop me a line at: awearmouth 'at' away 'dot' com. And please, please open your wallets, purses, hearts... ahem... Swiss bank accounts for a very worthy holiday cause!

Click below the jump for the fine print.

Continue reading "Passports with Purpose 2010: Donate and Win Great Travel Prizes!" »

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October 11, 2010

Clowning Around the Capital: Kids Euro Festival in Washington, D.C.

Slovakia's Captain Pantho (Kids Euro Festival)

And you thought the pols were the only clowns in town. Starting Thursday, October 14, Washington, D.C.'s month long Kids Euro Festival will showcase over 150 free family-friendly performances from acts around Europe. Staged in partnership with 27 European embassies in the U.S. capital, artists will include clowns, mimes, puppeteers, acrobats, dancers, and more from Eurozone countries like Austria, Lithuania, Sweden, and the U.K. All performances are free, although many require registration. Free public performances will take place at easy-to-access venues including the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts' Millennium Stage, Shakespeare Theatre, the Library of Congress, and the Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History.

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Related Topics: Family Vacation · Free Stuff · Travel News

September 28, 2010

Southwest Airlines will buy AirTran. So?

By Kate Chandler

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We normally don't cover "travel industry" news here, but I'm a big fan of Southwest and get strangely excited when they start offering service to new cities. Who knows? I may need to fly direct to Louisville one day.

This week the airline announced it will buy AirTran, another popular low-cost carrier. The acquisition will open some key domestic cities, in particular Atlanta, to loyal Southwest customers. But what's most exciting is the promise of a few new international destinations, something Southwest hasn't ventured into before. AirTran has service to Cancun, Mexico; Montego Bay, Jamaica; Punta Cana, Dominican Republic; San Juan, Puerto Rico; and Aruba. Check out the rest of the new offerings on the route maps.

Maybe I won't need to go to Louisville after all. You can find me in Punta Cana instead.

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Related Topics: Air Travel · Travel News

May 05, 2010

Travel Areas Threatened by the Gulf Oil Spill


NOAA's latest trajectory forecast for Gulf oil spill

The Deepwater Horizon Well off the Gulf Coast continues to spew some 5,000 barrels of oil per day into the Gulf of Mexico, and shoreline travel destinations from New Orleans to the Florida Keys are bracing for the slick to wash up on shore, which could come as soon as Thursday.

While officials and tourism operators caution visitors against prematurely canceling plans, the spill is sure to impact the tourism industry the same way it’s impacting the fishing and shrimping industry. These ten areas are under the most threat.

1. Breton Sound/Chandeleur Islands, LA
According to NOAA models, this chain of bayou, marshlands, and islets east of New Orleans will be the first place the oil hits. The area is known for its robust charter fishing, duck hunting, and boat tours through the bayou.

2. New Orleans, LA
It’s unlikely that oil will be washing onto Bourbon Street, but the Big Easy’s famous food scene could take a step back if local fisherman can’t get back on the waters to supply a fresh daily catch.

Continue reading "Travel Areas Threatened by the Gulf Oil Spill " »

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Related Topics: Travel News

April 20, 2010

The View of the Volcano from Scotland

Edinburgh...with some artistic license (Dan Busey)

I first heard about the volcanic eruption at 6 a.m. last Thursday in the dark hours of Glasgow, Scotland. A colleague called to say our flight to Newark International was canceled. After confirming that was true—and with little other info on Continental’s website—I stumbled, bleary-eyed from four hours sleep, into the hallway of the Radisson Blu Hotel and was told what now the whole world knows:  Volcanic ash from Eyjafjallajokull volcano’s eruption in southern Iceland now covered most of Europe in a dark shroud of glass, rubble, and soot.  It felt like something out a Hollywood in-flight, the first act to the attack of the zombies across Europe…

I’d been touring Scotland with a handful of other travel journalists for five quick days of hiking and cycling in the highlands and glad-handing at the Scottish Travel Expo in Glasgow.  All told, the convention drew approximately 800 worldwide visitors, and now all of them were stuck on the island, just like the rest of the globe was paralyzed from any sort of international travel to, from, or through most of Europe.  Flights were rescheduled, then rescheduled again as the days passed and the airports remained closed.

Continue reading "The View of the Volcano from Scotland" »

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Related Topics: Dispatches from the Road · European Travel · Travel News

April 17, 2010

Event Alert: National Park Week, April 17-25

By awayblog

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HANG IN THERE: Climbing Yosemite National Park (Stockbyte)

The annual National Park Week kicks off today, including the first in a series of three planned of "fee-free" days around the country's 392 national-park units. This year's National Park Week will stretch from April 17-25 and include special programs and events in parks big and small across the country. Get out there and enjoy free entrance to banner parks like Yosemite National Park, Zion National Park, and Yellowstone National Park, not to mention the warming spring weather and a relative dearth of crowds before the big summer rush descends. To give you something to talk about on the trail, here are some factoids about the 84 million acres of public land that fall under the National Park Service's stewardship.

- The least-visited NPS unit is Aniakchak National Monument and Preserve on Alaska's wind- and rain-lashed Alaska Peninsula, 450 miles southwest of Anchorage. Fourteen hardy souls visited here in 2009.

- The most-visited park unit is the 469-mile Blue Ridge Parkway, with Great Smoky Mountains National Park being the perennial blockbuster national park.

Continue reading "Event Alert: National Park Week, April 17-25" »

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Related Topics: Family Vacation · National Parks · Outdoor Adventures · Travel News

April 08, 2010

Travel Safety Alert: Mudslides in Brazil

By WorldNomads

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Overview of the Situation
Following massive thunderstorms in Brazil this week, transport and communications in Rio are all but shut down. Eduardo Paes, the mayor, ordered all schools closed and urged workers to stay home and not visit the downtown area which was inundated with water. Most businesses were also shuttered.

"Each and every person who attempts to enter them will be at enormous risk," Paes said. Adding to the problems, thousands have been left homeless and 90 killed after record rains washed away shanty towns and hillside slums (known as favelas).

Sources: and Al Jazeera, Wed 7 April, 2010

Issues for Travelers
Travelers these days are increasingly looking for authentic local experiences and many travel to the favela slums when visiting Rio de Janeiro. World Nomads blogged about traveling safely in Rio’s favelas in its SafetyHub blog a while back but now, with this recent landslide disaster, there are further safety issues to take into consideration.

Continue reading "Travel Safety Alert: Mudslides in Brazil" »

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Related Topics: South America Travel · Travel News · Travel Tips

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