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Adventure Travel / National Parks / Yosemite National Park / California Travel / Mariposa Grove / → All Tags
This year, Yosemite in California celebrates its 150th birthday, dedicating the entire year to its past, present, and future as a leader amongst national parks in the States.
It was the first time the Federal Government ever set aside a piece of land for preservation when Abraham Lincoln created the Yosemite Grant in 1864. Specifically, the grant protected Yosemite Valley, seen above from the classic "tunnel view" lookout, and Mariposa Grove, which harbors the huge sequoia trees found in southern part of the park (we'll take a closer look later this week).
Looks like the luck of the Irish came early for us, a rainbow stretching across Vernal Falls in Yosemite National Park.
This year, the park celebrates its 150th anniversary, and we're here to take a look at both the past and the present, reflecting on how it all began and where it is today. When Abraham Lincoln created the Yosemite Grant in 1864, it was the first time the Federal government ever set aside a piece of land for preservation.
Follow along with us next week as we walk through and explore this incredible landscape in central California.
[Photo: Will McGough]
Los Angeles Travel / LAX / ONT / BUR / LGB / SNA / Airports / Airport News / California Travel / Lists / → All Tags
When it comes to Los Angeles travel, all airports are not created equal.
Although most travelers know of LAX, the area actually boasts five major airports, each with its own strengths, weaknesses, WiFi policies, and paparazzi specialties. And you can bet frequent flyers to the left coast feel loyalty for the airports nearly as much as the airlines.
For example, our Editor Cynthia loves Long Beach for its slick looks and tech friendliness. On the flip side, HotelChatter Editor and LA resident Juliana pledges allegiance to the flexibility and fancy upgrades of LAX. Contributor Andy swears by SNA, and Jaunted friend The Sterling Traveler seconds the Long Beach fascination.
What? No love for Burbank or Ontario International? Having sampled all five airports in our travels, it's time to compare and contrast:
Disney / Disney World / Walt Disney World / Disneyland / Theme Parks / Amusement Parks / Florida Travel / California Travel / → All Tags
They’re at it again this year, but after the news from last month it’s going to cost you a little bit more to party all night long. Disney parks in California and Florida are doing the 24-hour thing once again, and this year’s events are set to go down this May.
Things were kicked off in a unique way, as they used a message on Twitter featuring 140 characters—Disney characters to be specific. Memorial Day Weekend is when things will be open all day long, as the “Rock Your Disney Side Party” takes place at both Disneyland and Walt Disney World Resort.
Disney Travel / Photo Gallery / Retro Travel / Vintage Travel / Events / Disneyland / California Travel / Dapper Day / Fashion Travel / Disney / → All Tags
For lovers of fashion, history, and a bit of good fun, there are plenty of "throwback" events in the year's social calendar. These primarily happen on the east coastfor example there are vintage baseball games and NYC's summer-favorite Jazz Age Lawn Partybut sometimes the west coast gets in on the retro fun as well.
Case in point: Dapper Day at Disneyland. The event began in 2011, with a few hundred amusement park-goers donning their best vintage duds to enjoy Disneyland the way Walt Disney envisioned it: with families dressed in suits and skirts instead of fanny packs and cargo shorts. Now, Dapper Day attracts around 20,000 (the "dapper" folk nearly outnumber regular visitors) in the one day, and it's spread to include the Disney parks in Orlando and Paris.
If we had to go and pick a favorite state then California would be close to the top. However, it looks like we might have a bit more difficulty picking a winner, as now there’s a plan to split up the Golden State into a few smaller nuggets.
There’s all kind of political implications, thoughts, and opinions surrounding the idea, but instead of taking sides or discussing the feasibility of the idea—we just kind of want to point out that this has become a thing. Basically a venture capitalist thinks that state is too big, and that by splitting things up into smaller states there would be more effective government and management of the new geographic units.
Ski Travel / Ski Deals / Adventure Travel / Colorado Travel / Salt Lake City Travel / California Travel / New York Travel / Canada Travel / → All Tags
Skiing is one of the most expensive hobbies you can get into, but thanks to one of those made up national holidays, "Play Hooky and Ski Week," you can get great deals on lift tickets across the country this March.
The website to find them on is called Liftopia, and it's pretty straightforward. It's a discount "lift ticket deal engine" that partners with over 250 resorts across the U.S. and Canada. In this case, it has a special site set up for "Hooky Week" from March 3rd to 7th, and there are some great opportunities on single and multi-day passes, with the typical savings in the 30-40% range.
You’ve been missing out if you haven’t tried Sriracha yet. The chili-paste-meets-hot-sauce concoction is now used on anything and everything, and even Subway has commercials advertising the stuff slathered all over their five-dollar footlongs. Now those needing even more of a fix are welcome to do so, as the Willy Wonka of the Sriracha industry has opened up the factory for public tours.
Huy Fong Foods is the company behind the magic, and now free tours are available in Irwindale, California in and around their 650,000-square-foot factory.
Airport News / SFO / Airports / California Travel / United / Airline News / → All Tags
Unfortunately, the folks over at Yankee Candle have yet to concoct a creation that features new airport smell, so that means we need to enjoy the opportunity to breathe in fresh airport terminal air whenever it arises. That chance is this week, as San Francisco International Airport is busy putting the final touches on its latest terminal revamp and renovation. It held a public event over the weekend to check things out, but it’s officially open to flyers beginning tomorrow.
The new additions are happening at the airport’s Terminal 3, as the new slice of the airport is Boarding Area E—they’re calling it T3E for short. It’s where a lot of United flyers will depart and arrive, so passengers with United stamped across their boarding passes will be the ones enjoying the new restaurants and amenities.
Events / Live Music Travel / Festival Travel / Palm Springs Travel / California Travel / Coachella 2014 / → All Tags
If case you haven't noticed, we've made no bones about our love for Palm Springs. In fact, we've even shared our 27 reasons why we think it's the bomb dignity. Naturally we aren't the only ones enamored with this oasis of retro style in the Californian desert, and it's becoming increasingly obvious that Palm Springs is becoming the place for festivals both new and old, for people of all persuasions.
In fact, spring 2014 will be the hottest season for happenings in the city, and the Palm Springs Board of Tourism shares the six most sizzling events, all in April:
Live Music Travel / California Travel / Coachella / Coachella 2014 / Events / Music Travel / Party Travel / → All Tags
HOLY SMOKES, you guys. The dates have already been announced for Coachella 2014 and ticket sales begin tomorrow! They've timed it perfectly; now is the perfect time to make California desert plans when much of the country is snowed in or blown about by icy winds.
The dates you need to set aside in your iCal are: April 11-13 and April 18-20.
As with Coachella 2013 and 2012, 2014's version will be split into two identical weekends of performances from musicians old and new (Outkast is reuniting!), with a hologram or two thrown in for max viral appeal. The only thing that won't be identical are the attendees, since you have the option of hitting up the first weekend and being surprised, or hitting up the second and being well prepared. Either way, we recommend you start phoning your choice Palm Springs hotel now to inquire about early booking deals.
Rental Cars / LAX / California Travel / Cars / Bill Diffenderffer / Silvercar / Skybus / → All Tags
At this point you probably have heard us mention Silvercar, and their plans to change the way we do the rental car thing. The company offers up one type of car, so you can pick whatever you want to rent as long as it’s a brand new silver Audi A4. The cars come with plenty of free stuff including WiFi, GPS, Satellite Radio, and they even have a fairer way in which to refuel your car.
There’s no need to check-in at the rental car desk either, as you’re able to do everything right from the comfort of your mobile device. They’ve been expanding across the country slowly but surely, and they are an option in spots like Los Angeles, San Francisco, Dallas-Ft. Worth, Houston-Hobby, and Austin. Now they’re more eager than ever to have you check them out, and there’s a pretty good introductory offer.