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17 of the World’s Most Extraordinary National Parks

Hakone National Park

Yellowstone was the world’s first national park. As the US National Park Service turns 100 years old this year, people from around the country (and globe) are flocking to these iconic reserves. US National Parks now number more than 400 and welcomed more than 305 million visitors in 2015.

The idea of creating protected wilderness areas was a popular one; more than 100 countries around the world have followed suit, with more than 1200 national parks worldwide. While you can always visit some of the newest national parks here in the United States, you might want to consider checking out some of the amazing national parks outside our borders.

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May 25, 2016 by | Comments Off

Top 10 US Travel Photos You Need to Take

Welcome to Fabulous Las Vegas

Back in the day, you had to pick and choose your shots since you might have only one roll of film and 24 to 36 possible photos. You had to worry and wonder if you’d blinked, as you couldn’t tell before the film was developed (at a store, inevitably taking more than an hour). Then there was the awful time you accidentally opened the back of the camera and exposed the entire roll, rendering all of your vacation shots black. Those were dark times.

Now, taking that perfect vacation shot is much easier, and so it’s become more important to have those iconic shots in your photo gallery. You know the ones, the shots that prove you’ve traveled the length and breadth of our fair country, seeing the most important sights and sites. Here are the top 10 travel photos from the United States.

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May 16, 2016 by | Comments Off

Where to Go in May: 20 Great Spots for a Shoulder Season Trip

May's a great time to hit the beach in Rio.

Whether you’ve had enough of the April showers and need a travel respite, or you’re trying to hit the tail end of the shoulder season or just itching to add a new stamp to your passport, May is an excellent month to hit the road. Almost no matter where you’re headed, the month has that desirable not-too-hot-and-not-too-cold weather, and it’s also a time for some pretty big festivals. Here are some ideas for where to go in May.

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April 29, 2016 by | 0 Comments

6 Reasons You Need to Go to Detroit This Year

Detroit, Michigan

For awhile now, Detroit has made news for the wrong reasons. Bankruptcy, “ruin porn,” residents maintaining public parks because the city just wasn’t – the list goes on. In the past several years, however, the story has been changing, just like the city.

Detroit’s recovery, dubbed “America’s great comeback story,” may be a morbid curiosity to reality TV audiences waiting for failure, but that recovery is real – palpable in the city itself, particularly when you talk to people who have lived in Detroit for decades. Yes, there are still boarded-up buildings downtown, but occupancy rates in renovated apartment buildings are so high there’s a waiting list. Things are happening in Detroit, and there’s no time like the present to go and see for yourself.

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April 15, 2016 by | Comments Off

The Most Beautiful Place You’ve Never Heard of to Watch Sunsets

Ludington's famous sunset (photo by Jessica Spiegel)

“Where are you going after your visit to Detroit?” My table-mate was a young Michigan native working for the city’s tourism office, and when I replied, “Ludington,” her face positively lit up. Then she grabbed her phone and started swiping through photo after photo of glowing pink, yellow and orange clouds over water.

“Ludington is the best,” she gushed. “The sunsets – I mean, just look at them – they’re amazing!”

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March 18, 2016 by | Comments Off

Get There First: The Newest National Parks to Visit in 2016

Valles Caldera National Preserve

In 2015, the NPS established seven new national parks, bringing the total number to 58. These new parks include a desert on the edge of Las Vegas, a supervolcano and the birthplace of America’s 16th president. The addition of these seven parks adds 250,000 acres of protected land to the total. The last significant addition prior to this was during the Carter presidency; 1,974,005 acres were added with the adoption of the National Parks and Recreation Act of 1978.

This year, to celebrate the centennial anniversary of U.S. national parks, make plans to visit the newest additions. While these parks are new to the NPS, they’re not totally brand-new sites. However, with the new funding (and title of national park), these lesser-known gems won’t remain under the radar for long.

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March 8, 2016 by | Comments Off

Discovering the Unexpected Art of Detroit

The Z Garage @ Detroit by soupstance (CC BY 2.0)

Detroit has been in the news over the past several years for what many might say are all the wrong reasons. More recently, the city has been appearing in the travel news as the comeback kid, a destination for people who prefer getting away from the same itinerary everyone else seems to be planning. Detroit absolutely is that place – a busy city with a difficult past and a promising future. And while you’re there, you should really check out the art scene.

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February 23, 2016 by | Comments Off

10 Great Observation Decks Around the World

The Shard

There’s no better way to experience a location than to peer down upon the landscape from a great height. From the world’s tallest man-made structure to a walkout platform shadowing the Grand Canyon, these 10 observation decks around the world offer some of the world’s most breathtaking views.

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February 16, 2016 by | 0 Comments

Top Places to Ski Around the World

The Alps hold a certain charm that is undeniable. People from all over the world flock to this region in Europe at the first sign of fresh powder, aching to drop their skis or snowboards into the fluffy white snow.

But, the Alps are just one of many spectacular areas in the world where the skiing is world-class and the mountains are magical.

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February 9, 2016 by | 4 Comments

The Civil Rights Trail: Significant Locations in the Struggle for Freedom

Rosa Parks Library

February is Black History Month in the United States, a time to reflect on the struggles and accomplishments of black Americans in their pursuit to widen the consciousness of their country and balance the injustices of the system they were born into. This was a long and arduous struggle, which culminated in the Civil Rights movement of the 1960s. For those wishing to explore this history, here are a few significant sites on the Civil Rights Trail you’ll want to check out.

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February 2, 2016 by | 1 Comment

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