International Travel Information
Check out this story twice a week for updates on international travel information. If it's out of the U.S., it's in this story! Newest information at the top.
For older stories, please go to my main story page: storify.com/bwashington2013.
Istanbul's Aquarium: fish and other featuresUpdate Dec. 6
- Located in Florya, Istanbul, the aquarium not only has about 15,000 animals, but a replica of Noah's Ark, interactive games and 5-D movies. Most of the displays have English explanation so feel free to check out the Russian sturgeon, snakes, sharks, piranhas, frogs, stingrays and other creatures without having a Turkish language book.
Holiday Travel to Mexico - celebrate local holidays as wellUpdate Dec. 5
- When traveling abroad for the holidays, don't be afraid to check out local holidays as well. In Cozumel, Mexico, there is the Our Lady of Guadalupe Festival or La Fiesta de la Virgen de Guadalupe. The festival, which celebrates Mexico's patron saint, starts Dec. 6 and ends Dec. 12. Hotels encourage guests to participate in the processions and parades. Get more details at the link below.
Bar in Paris provides a space for napsUpdate: Nov. 29
- Touring Paris can be exciting and tiring. The Zen Bar a Sieste, the Zen Nap Bar, provides massage beds and anti-gravity chairs for people who want to rest without returning to their hotels.
Santa Claus lives in Finland
- Update: Nov. 28On her recent trip to Finland, Travel Journalist Chris Gray Faust found Santa Claus. Rovaniemi, a town in Lapland, Finland, claims to be Santa Claus Village. The city survives economically by tourism: claiming to be Santa's hometown and its outdoor pursuits such as hiking and rafting in the summer draw people in. Two Santa attractions are Santapark, an underground amusement park and Joulukka, a more private Santa experience featuring a sleigh ride, a visit to the Christmas Command Center and meeting with Santa himself. For more about Faust's experience, check out the story below.
Vacation in Vietnam: beautiful places to visitUpdate: Nov. 21
- White beaches, mountains and forests with waterfalls are just a things Vietnam has to offer. Global Grasshopper lists 10 beautiful places to visit, including Phong Nha-Ke Bang National Park, home to the largest cave in the world and evergreen forests, and the Nguyen Dynasty Tombs, featuring intricate ceramic and glass works.
Cuba is more accessible to AmericansUpdate Nov. 19
- This year, the Obama Administration eased the restrictions on travel to Cuba. Less restrictions means more travel opportunities; this means vacation deals. Budget Travel introduced its first ever deal to Cuba this week. For $1,899, travelers' visa, round-trip air-faire, four nights in Havana, meals, transfers and tour guide is included. This isn't your average Caribbean beach-and-party trip: travelers will meet Cuban artists, a professor who specializes in U.S./Cuban relations and they'll visit an elementary school and housing project.
El Salvador's Es Artes: creating a Latin American center for theater and tourismUpdate Nov. 17
- Es Artes is a joint project with El Salvador and Canada that brings artists from the Stratford Festival in Ontario to the town of Suchitoto. The Canadian volunteers work with local theater people to train people in acting, costume sewing and other theatrical work. This project was started as a way to inspire young people; to instill hope in a war-ravaged town suffering from unemployment and gang violence. As for tourism, volunteers can stay in the best hotel in town, Los Almendros, a renovated 16th century home.
- Watch this video for more details about the project and its origin.
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