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Museum Travel / Papua New Guinea Travel / Bird of Paradise / Birding / Adventure Travel / New Mexico Museum of Natural History / Albuquerque Travel / Salt Lake City Travel / Fort Lauderdale Travel / → All Tags
One of Papua New Guinea’s main tourism markets is centered around the beautiful Bird of Paradise, which is only found in PNG and parts of Australia. Its brightly-colored features and dramatic presence draws the international birding crowd to PNG, from organized tours to research and educational focus groups.
Cornell Scientist Edwin Scholes and National Geographic Photographer Tim Laman teamed up to complete the first comprehensive study of the Bird of Paradise, an endeavor that took eight years and 18 expeditions. Along with the scientific data, they brought back a huge collection of photos and videos that capture all 39 known species of the bird. The scientist/photographer combo also documented several new behaviors not previously known to researchers, mainly focusing on the displays of courtship as they relate to the selection of sexual partners and, thus, evolution.
Throwback Thursday / Admirals Club / AAdvantage / Airline Loyalty Programs / Airline Lounges / Travel Contests / American Airlines / DFW / Museum Travel / Historical Travel / → All Tags
Sure, we love all the speed and comfort of modern travel, but it didn't get that way overnight. Every Thursday, we're going to take a look back at travel the way it used to be, whether that's decades or centuries ago. This is Throwback Thursday, travel edition.
This week we got a little restless and hopped down to Dallas for the day, with the express purpose of wandering around AA's C.R. Smith Museum, about a 10-minute drive from DFW Airport. We'll have more on it later since it is a very worthwhile diversion, but allow us to highlight their small exhibit on the history of airline lounges.
You see, American Airlines originated the ideas of airport lounges way, way back when commercial aviation was still in its infancy. 2014 marks the 75th Anniversary of the Admirals Club, the first of which debuted in December 1939 as the "Flagship Club" at what is now New York's LaGuardia Airport.
Easy Day Trips / Florida Travel / Daytona Beach Travel / Orlando Travel / Museum Travel / → All Tags
Located about halfway between Orlando and Daytona Beach lies the city of DeLand. The city was founded in 1876 by Henry Addison DeLand, a wealthy baking soda manufacturer from New York. His friend, John B. Stetson, who made his wealth in hat manufacturing and is the credited inventor of the iconic “cowboy hat,” liked the area so much that he decided to build a house there. This house would serve as the DeLand family’s winter retreat from Philadelphia.
Originally, the house was built on the 300 acres of land that Mr. Stetson owned. Today it sits on only a little over 2 acres so it is hard to imagine what it would have looked like. After John B. Stetson’s death in 1906 the house was eventually sold off and had become a private home to different families throughout the last century, losing some the history along the way.
Museum Travel / Pan Am / Juan Trippe / Smithsonian / Washington DC Travel / Retro Travel / → All Tags
The news these last few days has featured much about the boundaries and challenges for the future of travel, and how space is not only important for transportation, but imagination. Altogether it has reminded us of a famous quote from Pan Am's Juan Trippe:
Mass travel by air - made possible in the jet age - may prove to be more significant to world destiny than the atom bomb. For there can be no atom bomb potentially more powerful than the air tourist, charged with curiosity, enthusiasm, and good will, who can roam the four corners of the world, meeting in friendship and understanding the people of other nations and races.
Trippe's office globe, on which he planned Pan Am's route expansion, has been preserved within the Smithsonian's archives. Visitors may see it, along with other Pan Am historical items, in the "America by Air" exhibition at the National Air and Space Museum in Washington DC.
Looking for something to do—how about a visit to a new museum? Dubbed the “mini-Smithsonian”—at least by its founders—the Discovery Park of America sits in rural Tennessee, but apparently visitors have had no problem at all finding it.
Officials over at the museum kind of expected around 150,000 people tops to check things out in the first year. Well, the museum celebrated its first birthday over the weekend, and over 270,000 people have already visited.
Museum Travel / Aviation / Airplanes / History Travel / Historical Travel / Throwback Thursday / Airlines / Airline News / Delta / ATL / Atlanta Travel / Airports / Photo Gallery / SkyTeam / Pan Am / AvGeek / → All Tags
Above: the Delta DC-3
2014 has been a huge, huuuuuge year for airline anniversaries, and at the top of the list is Delta's 85th Anniversary of passenger service, which they celebrated with a reopening of their aviation museum at Atlanta Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport.
Why a re-opening? Well, as it goes with museums, sometimes exhibits need polishing and the Delta Flight Museum had originally opened back in 1995. It's so much more than spit-shining some cases, however; an entire new aircraft was waiting to be added to the permanent collection.
Now visitors can finally get up close with the Boeing 767 "Spirit of Delta," which was actually purchased by donations totaling $30 million from Delta employees. This plane almost single-handedly allowed Delta to weather the tough economic times of the early 1980s and begin modernizing their fleet. She flew for 23 years and is now half time capsule, half museum-within-in-a-museum, and completely open for visitors to tour.
It seems like everyone in travel advertising these days is trying to tug on heart strings. Expedia regularly makes ads about how travel can bring families and lovers together. Their late summer campaign even managed to rope in Throwback Thursday nostalgia. A little while ago the Enjoy Illinois campaign made an ad that was almost too cutesy, but had so much charm that Buzzfeed described it as "honestly, the best state tourism ad ever created." KLM's recent puppy Lost & Found ad made people melt. Even when attempts go spectacularly awry - as so famously happened with Sinagpore's grating couples ad - the intent is still there.
The one consistent exception has been Kayak, which does in a very technical sense produce ads that have to do with families, though not the way you'd think. But that company has a long history of posting videos produced by people who were seemingly tripping balls, so no one really counts them.
Museum Travel / Hawaii Travel / Honolulu Travel / Waikiki Travel / Bishop Museum / Cultural Travel / Oahu Travel / → All Tags
As far as the numbers go, Waikiki is the most popular landing place for tourists visiting the Hawaiian Islands. People flock to the infamous beach for its relatively calm surf, happening hotels, high-end shops, food scene, and nightlife. However, despite these attractive amenities, it without question provides the least authentic look into actual Hawaiian culture as compared to other destinations throughout the state. All of it, including the grains of sand themselves, have been brought in to create what you see today.
But that doesn’t mean a trip to Waikiki has to be shallow, as one of the island’s premier collections of Hawaiian history and culture sits down the road at the Bishop Museum in Honolulu. Regardless of whether you crave to learn more about the locals or just want to feel like you left Hawaii with more than a gut full of Mai Tais, this is indeed the place to pencil in a half day of exploration and reflection.
Museum Travel / Aviation / Airplanes / History Travel / Historical Travel / Throwback Thursday / Brazil Travel / RAO / Sao Paulo Travel / Photo Gallery / TAM / LATAM / General Aviation / Airlines / Airline News / Airplane News / → All Tags
Every aviation museum worth its salt these days can boast of classic warplanes, military fighter jets here and there, and perhaps a pre-jet-age Lockheed Constellation, but few go the extra mile to secure and preserve the rarest, most historic, and, in some cases, most expensive airplanes nearly lost to history as does the Museu TAM.
The museum is the baby of TAM Airlines and is now the largest museum in the world maintained by an airline. Unfortunately it isn't the easiest daytrip destination; the Museu sits in a spacious pair of hangars just outside the town of São Carlos, an hour's drive from the city of Ribeirão Preto (location of the nearest commercial airport), which is itself an hour's flight (or 3-hour drive) from São Paulo. You'd never expect to find one of the world's most important aviation museums way out here, in this part of rural Brazil better known for sugarcane plantations, but here it is.
The museum opened to the public in 2006 with only around 32 aircraft, but they've been quite busy since and the collection now numbers 89 vintage and rare flying machines (49 of which are incredibly still in flying condition).
Music Travel / Arizona Travel / Phoenix Travel / Musical Instrument Museum / Museum Travel / → All Tags
Earlier this summer, we raved about our experience at the Rainforest World Music Festival in Borneo, impressed by how it aggregated so many of the world's musical styles in one place. A few weeks later, still inspired, we highlighted the Musical Instrument Museum (MIM) in Phoenix for its collection of 15,000 instruments from 200 countries.
In October, these two experiences will clash head on, as the MIM will host its inaugural Global Music Festival here in the States. Set to take place the weekend of October 18th, the festival will include Celtic, Ethiopian, West African, Jazz, Appalachian string, folk, and Latin performances, each featuring the traditional music and instruments of the unique styles.
First it was pickpockets, and now there’s another kind of pest hanging out around the Louvre over in Paris.
It seems like the inside of the museum is safe, but the gardens that surround the place are kind of infested with rats—gross. Apparently visitors and tourists enjoy leaving bits and pieces of trash and picnic debris behind, and that encourages the rats to come out and snack. Unfortunately a real life version of Ratatouille it is not.
Mexico Travel / Mexico / Cancun Travel / Cancun / Conservation Travel / Green Travel / Museum Travel / Scuba Diving / → All Tags
In 2009 we told you about a neat little conservation scheme that Mexico had brainstormed to preserve the country's coral reefs. The reefs around Cancun were getting overrun by tourists, and so the government wanted to give those tourists something different but still shiny to play with instead. In this case the folks in charge of Mexico travel decided to build the world's largest underwater museum, and to fill it with precious sculptures. It would give divers a brand new thing to explore. Clever clever.
Fast forward half a decade, and CNN just did a full-blown photo spread on the now-completed Museo Subacuático de Arte. The museum's collection is filled with among other things sculptures by British artist Jason deCaires Taylor. The article explains that the cement was covered with a particular kind of material that boosts coral growth, with the aim being that the art of providing a skeleton for a brand new coral reef.