United States Travel Guide

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How Virgin America Aided the Post-Hurricane Evacuation from Cabo San Lucas

September 23, 2014 at 4:38 PM | by | Comments (0)

In the days following last week's category 3 Hurricane Odile and the destruction of Mexico's Baja Peninsula, both military and commercial jets mustered and pooled resources to rescue a thousands of stranded and weary travelers. Among the airlines to provide free relief flights were United, American Airlines, Alaska Airlines, Delta, Southwest, and Virgin America.

The September 18 relief flight by Virgin America transported pallets stacked with water and food to Cabo and brought back a planeful of trapped tourists. Flying nonstop from Los Cabos to San Francisco, they fared far better than those who ended up with transport only as far as Tijuana. Virgin America has been one of the greatest champions of Cabo travel in the few years since they began flying to SJD, in the winter of 2010.

The plane to fly the mission was N855VA, named "screw it, let's do it" after one of Richard Branson's books. The lucky passengers who made it onboard surely echoed the sentiment, after queuing down airport roads for hours in the sun, waiting for a flight any flight to get them out of there.

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Race to Escape a City Overrun with Zombies During Nevada's Redrun II

September 23, 2014 at 2:27 PM | by | Comments (0)

If Zombiegeddon were upon us, would you rather be among the hordes of zombies, the living insane, or those running for their lives? The Redrun II – A Zombie Sequel lets you decide exactly where you think you'd belong.

The second annual horror run will take place in Virginia City, Nevada, thought to be one of the most haunted cities in America.

During the event, zombies will chase runners through Virginia City's train tunnels, haunted buildings, the Comstock Gold Mill, train graveyard and more. The total course covers six miles including six dead zones and six obstacles where runners will have to work together to survive.

Runners can regroup along the way at Revive Stations where there will be plenty of beer, water and, most importantly, safety.

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Easy Day Trips from Seattle: The Woodland Park Rose Garden

September 23, 2014 at 12:51 PM | by | Comments (0)

Seattleites love spending time outside. This week, contributor Lilit Marcus shows how even the most indoorsy city kid can enjoy Seattle's outdoor gems without having to go on the advanced hike.

One of the best things about visiting Seattle is how much nature you can enjoy without ever leaving the city limits. There is, for example, the Woodland Park Rose Garden, located across the street from the entrance to the Woodland Hill Zoo. This lush location in the Green Lake or Wallingford neighborhoods (it depends who you ask) is completely free to the public and open from 7 AM until dusk every day, year round, rain or shine.

For an hour or half the day, the Rose Garden is an ideal spot for quiet time, reading, meeting up with friends, or just enjoying a nice day outside. There's also the added bonus of being among the first to spot new rose hybrids before they become publicly available, as the Woodland Park Rose Garden is one of the few certified Rose Test Gardens in the USA.

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Inside the New Oneworld International Business Lounge at LAX

September 23, 2014 at 9:09 AM | by | Comments (0)

Freshly opened back in June, the new International Business Lounge within the Tom Bradley International Terminal (TBIT) at Los Angeles International Airport is the result of a combined effort from Oneworld alliance partners Qantas, British Airways, and Cathay Pacific. Located on level 5, it can accommodate up to 400 people and is open from 6 a.m. to 12:30 a.m. Earlier this month, we swung through to take a look around during an 8-hour layover from 1 p.m. to 9 p.m.

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What Does the 'Rougarou' Name of Cedar Point's Next Coaster Mean?

September 22, 2014 at 1:40 PM | by | Comments (0)

Cedar Point's record-breaking Mantis roller coaster may still have a little more than two weeks yet to live, but already the paint cans are open and hype machine on high for the ride's transformation to "Rougarou."

Losing its primary colors in favor of a fiery orange, Mantis ends its run on October 19 and will lose the stand-up style trains to become a sit-down "floorless" coaster named for a fictional monster. Or maybe it's not so fictional?

According to BigFootEvidence.com (hmm), a "Rougarou" is something not very nice:

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Easy Day Trips from Seattle: A Total Beginner's Guide to Olympic National Park

September 22, 2014 at 10:33 AM | by | Comments (0)

Seattleites love spending time outside. This week, contributor Lilit Marcus shows how even the most indoorsy city kid can enjoy Seattle's outdoor gems without having to go on the advanced hike.

Olympic National Park is also a UNESCO World Heritage site, which makes it an ideal spot for people crossing either national parks or UNESCO sites off of their to-do lists. Its size and distance from Seattle will make it just about impossible to visit without a car, so your best bet is to join up with a tour group.

The excellent but somewhat pricey Seattle-based EverGreenEscapes Tours (which I booked through Viator for $250 pp) will be happy to take you out for the day, an option which will free you from dealing with the logistics.

The adventure begins with a trip on the Bainbridge Island ferry, then a drive through Port Angeles to the park, with an arrival at the iconic Hurricane Ridge.

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Why Pittsburgh Airport Hopes You Packed a Bow and Arrow

September 19, 2014 at 6:52 AM | by | Comments (0)

We’re not saying hunting is cool and we’re not saying that it’s not, but we are passing along new about the rare opportunity to do it at the airport. The Pittsburgh International Airport is looking to control the wildlife in and around the airport grounds, and they’re holding a little bit of a lottery to offer up the chance to thin the population.

It’s not really at the airport in the traditional sense, but it is on land owned by the count airport authority. It’s archery only, and this year things will be limited to less than 1,000 acres or so. They’ve done this in the past as well, but this year due to development and other airport awesomeness—there's less land available, and we guess that's good for the deer!

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'Twilight' Actor Jackson Rathbone Describes Horrifying Emergency Landing

September 18, 2014 at 2:19 PM | by | Comments (0)

Twilight star Jackson Rathbone's JetBlue flight to Austin made an emergency landing this afternoon and he's been recounting the entire experience on Twitter.

Rathbone's first tweet, posted around 12:50 PM EST, simply read, "Thank you Jesus and the pilot of this plane."

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See, Told You Virtual Reality Travel Wasn't Far Off!

September 18, 2014 at 11:41 AM | by | Comments (0)

About a month ago, we wondered aloud whether virtual reality could make waves in the travel industry, allowing us to be mentally transported to destinations around the globe without physically leaving our home cities. We thought it was more of a daydream at the time, but this morning we awoke to the news that Marriott has unveiled what it calls "The Teleporter," a virtual reality machine that allows people to "tour" select hotels in the States.

The Teleporter made its public debut today at the Marriott in New York. It will remain there for five days, then take off for the rest of its eight-city tour to its properties in Boston, DC, Atlanta, Dallas, San Diego, San Jose, and San Francisco.

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The 5 Awesomest Oktoberfests Happening Here in the USA

September 18, 2014 at 10:36 AM | by | Comments (0)

It’s the season to raise a glass, mug, or stein in celebration of Oktoberfest. With only days until events kick off, a last-minute trip to Munich may not be in the cards this year. That’s okay, as there are plenty of towns, communities, and cities doing the Oktoberfest thing on this side of the ocean. Here are some of our favorites:

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High-Speed Rail from Chicago is Full-Steam Ahead (Almost)

September 18, 2014 at 9:07 AM | by | Comment (1)

Riding the rails out of Chicago will not only get easier, but a whole lot faster thanks to a plan to run a high-speed rail link between the Midwestern metropolis and the Gateway to the West, St. Louis. Just last week, Illinois Governor Pat Quinn allotted a whopping $102 million from the state's budget for improvement of the rail corridor between the two cities.

The plan for the sped-up Amtrak line will allow higher speed trains to travel up to 110 mph between St. Louis and Dwight (about 75 minutes from Chicago). The final leg to Chicago will also be ready to go fast in 2017.

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This Website Highlights the Small Towns Most Pass By on California's Highway 1

Where: Highway 1, California, United States
September 17, 2014 at 12:33 PM | by | Comments (0)

We all know that Highway 1 runs nearly the entire coast of California, from Mexico up through San Francisco to the Oregon border. Most people drive it in a day or two from San Diego or Los Angeles up to the Bay Area, with many itineraries including stops in Santa Barbara, Carmel, and Monterrey. Sprinkled between these well-known tourist towns is what this writer considers to be one of the best kept secrets in the country, the rural Central Coast of California.

San Luis Obispo has made headlines in recent years for its happy citizens, and San Simeon draws its fair share of attention thanks to Hearst Castle. Still, the Central Coast is largely bypassed and just a drive-through for out-of-state and international travelers in favor of the bright lights and beaches of Los Angeles and the beautiful bay of San Francisco. As a former resident of Santa Barbara, I had the pleasure of exploring this area in all its untouched glory, where the sea, mountains, and vines of wine country all come together along the coast.

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