United States Travel Guide

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Snooze News: Napping Baggage Handler Becomes Accidental Stowaway

April 20, 2015 at 10:57 AM | by | Comments (0)

We've heard of people being fired for sleeping on the job. But this is on another level. Several thousand feet higher, in fact.

One contract employee of Alaska Airlines has been banned from future work with the airline after taking a little bit of a nap on the job—and in a really bad location.

The baggage handler needed to take a quick break, and thought catching a little shuteye inside the baggage hold of the airplane was a good idea. Any guess what happened next? Bingo! The individual was trapped inside the belly of the plane as Alaska Airlines flight 448 departed from Seattle, bound for Los Angeles.

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3 'Louie' Themed Date Nights You Can Go On Right Now In NYC

April 17, 2015 at 3:53 PM | by | Comments (0)

Louie's fifth season has just debuted on FX, bringing more of the comedian's dark humor, and favorite New York hangouts, to the small screen. In honor of Louie C.K.'s return, here's a look at three Louie-style date nights to some of the most memorable restaurants and comedy clubs ever featured on the show. Hopefully, you'll have more luck in love than Louie did.

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This is Why So Many People Flock to D.C. This Time of Year

April 17, 2015 at 10:35 AM | by | Comment (1)

This time of year, Washington D.C. is flooded with tourists from all over the world. Yes, the weather has finally broken and they come to enjoy the attractions of the National Mall, but the biggest draw is the blooming of the cherry blossoms that happens this month.

Why do so many people brave the crowds to see a couple trees? Today, we provide a glimpse of just how much the trees enhance the beauty of our Nation's Capital. We think there's something special about seeing a city at its best. If you find yourself in town this weekend, be sure to browse what's going on at the official Cherry Blossom Festival.

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South Florida's Tri-Rail Now Finally Doing Its Thing To MIA

April 16, 2015 at 11:30 AM | by | Comments (3)

Good news for those looking to head into or head out of Miami, as another of the area’s commuter trains has finally linked itself up with the airport.

Earlier this month a new Tri-Rail station opened up at Miami International Airport’s transit hub, and that means passengers are now just a short people mover ride away from the terminals and concourses.

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Hawaii is Thinking About Riding a Ferry Again

April 16, 2015 at 9:00 AM | by | Comments (0)

Remember way back to when the Hawaii Superferry was doing its thing, as it took tourists and locals alike across a quick stretch of the Pacific? Well things did not really work out too well, and that last we heard the ferry was sent off to an early retirement over in Virginia—far, far from the islands of Hawaii.

Well now it looks like the state government in paradise is thinking about a little ferry fun once again, as there is discussion about starting up a more affordable way to get between the islands without taking to the skies. Officials like what they have seen over in Washington State, and they have given the go ahead for the Department of Transportation to study how things could shake out. This time there seems to be more of a focus on passengers only rather than cars too.

One of the concerns is that residents just can’t afford the airfare to hop between the islands, and that’s especially the case when multiplying things for a family of four—or more. So there’s certainly a lot to look at here, and by no means will you be taking a traditional ferry between Oahu and Maui anytime soon. However, we’ll see where this goes, and of course will keep you posted.

[Photo: billsoPHOTO]

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Traveling With a Crowd: 'Rally Bus' Puts a 'Crowd-Powered' Spin on Group Travel

April 15, 2015 at 10:37 AM | by | Comments (0)

Many travel topics can divide a room down the middle, but few spark more heated debates than group travel. Whether it's a small group of friends or a big tour bus, there's no question that traveling with others both creates and crushes opportunities on the road.

Big groups, such as those on tour buses, can afford travelers the chance to meet and connect with others on the road. But they can also wash away the charm of individual or small group travel, decreasing the likelihood for personal experiences.

Well, a United States tour company called Rally Bus is hoping to combine the best of both worlds by offering group travel services to group events. Sure, you might not want to travel to a Buddhist Monastery with 40 people in tow, but a sporting event? A concert? Possibly.

Rally Bus' focus is on "crowd-powered" events that promote camaraderie, figuring some things are better experienced as part of a like-minded group.

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How to Visit Ni'ihau, the 'Forbidden Island' of Hawaii

April 15, 2015 at 10:06 AM | by | Comments (0)

Above: Ni'ihau as seen from Kauai

Perhaps you've heard of Hawaii's "Forbidden Island," where just under 200 residents speak Hawaiian as their first language, and no outside visitors are welcome without explicit invitation. Sitting so tantalizingly near to the coast of Kauai, this privately owned island, named Ni'ihau, is the westernmost of the Hawaiian Islands chain. It's so close and, yet, so far.

There are, however, ways to visit Ni'ihau on your vacation. One of the most popular trips to Ni'ihau focuses on the pristine waters of the island's coastline, home to many rare endemic species of sea life. Only one tourist boat operator on Kauai that crosses the Kaulakahi Channel between Kauai and Niihau for snorkeling excursions on its coast and around Lehua Crater daily, and that's Holo Holo Charters, who also originated Ni'ihau snorkeling trips.

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Whale Nerds Will Unite at 'Welcome the Whales' in Langley

April 14, 2015 at 4:20 PM | by | Comments (0)

Are you a Whale Nerd? Don't be ashamed to admit it. Instead, stand tall and proud and head to Langley, Washington this weekend to Welcome the Whales.

The super fun annual cetacean celebration welcomes the spring arrival of the Saratoga Gray whales to the Puget Sound and Salish Sea.

In early spring, the barnacled mammals start to arrive in Pacific Northwest waters, fresh from their winter migration. The 30 ton giants come to feast on the mudflats, which are rich with shrimp and worms. According to Orca Network, there are 200-300 “seasonal resident” Gray whales that spend the spring, summer and fall feeding from California to Southeast Alaska.

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How to Get to the Pretty Parks of Southern Utah

April 14, 2015 at 12:28 PM | by | Comment (1)

The scene in Southern Utah, outside of Hanksville.

Salt Lake City and the surrounding ski areas are Utah's biggest tourist draw, providing a remarkable combination of quality skiing and extreme accessibility. Mountain towns like Park City are also a big draw during the summer, with convenience a major contributing factor. Fly into SLC, and the mountains are 45 minutes away.

The southern part of the state doesn't have quite the same luck. The abundance of state and national parks in Southern Utah is arguably a better draw for adventure travelers, but the problem is getting there. There are no major cities, making it a difficult region for out-of-state or cross country travelers to access.

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Travel Snapshot: Goblin Valley in Southern Utah

Where: Golbin Valley State Park [map], Green River, Utah, United States
April 13, 2015 at 4:35 PM | by | Comments (0)

Southern Utah is loaded with state and national parks, a list that includes Zion, Arches, Canyonlands, Snow Canyon, and Bryce Canyon. All of these are known for, among other things, their beautiful rock formations. One of the most unique is also one of the area's smallest, Goblin Valley, famous for its lollipop formations that resemble mushrooms, or goblin heads. If you remember, it's where this idiot taught us what not to do when traveling through a state or national park.

At just under five square miles, Goblin Valley is just a blip on the radar when compared to nearby Arches (120 square miles) and Canyonlands (527 square miles). Despite its small size, there are an abundance of naturally formed caverns you can comfortably explore to lose the crowds. There are three established hiking trails, but "unofficial" trails are found all over the park, winding their way through the goblin heads and between the buttes.

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Is a $270 Scenic Helicopter Flight of Hawaii Worth It?

April 13, 2015 at 12:19 PM | by | Comment (1)

Tell friends who've been to Hawaii before that you're heading to Kauai and there's one thing you'll hear over and over: "you've got to take a helicopter tour!"

Soaring above remote waterfalls, azure reefs, untouched coastline, and Hawaii's own version of the Grand Canyon (Waimea Canyon) sounds like a no-brainer... until you see the price tag. Averaging $200 per person, helicopter tours around Hawaii demand more consideration and budgeting than, say, a surfing lesson. And, for some of the islands' more unique destinations, scenic helicopter flights edge upward toward $300.

Recently while in Kauai, we flew with Island Helicopters, the only company with landing rights at the impressive Manawaiopuna Falls, better known as "Jurassic Park Falls" for their cameo in the movie. The "Jurassic Park Falls Helicopter Landing Adventure" tour costs from $269 per person and lasts 75-85 minutes. The more basic flight, named "Grand Circle Tour," is available from $145 per person and lasts 50-60 minutes.

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Do You Know How To 'Find Your Park'? We Bet You Will Soon

April 13, 2015 at 10:40 AM | by | Comments (0)

There’s a whole weekend of free national parks coming your way as complimentary admission is part of the first few days of National Park Week April 18-19. That’s all fine and dandy, but what if you’re not able to figure out the best park for you? Well, that’s where the National Park Service steps in with their new promotion and marketing spinFind Your Park.

First lady Michelle Obama and former first lady Laura Bush will partner with the park service as part of the promotion, as everyone goes all in to show what America has in her backyard.

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