Saturday snippets: 28th November 2015

By | Category: Travel news
Helen Marshall's The Face of World War I. She will also create the new montage

Helen Marshall’s The Face of World War I. She will also create the new artwork.

The National Arboretum in Staffordshire is appealing for help in creating a huge photo-montage, which will explore what Remembrance means to individuals, families and society, and will feature in its new Remembrance Centre, due to open in Autumn 2016.From now until April 2016, visitors to the Arboretum and members of the local community are invited to submit photographs that have a unique story behind them, such as a story of a family hero, a day you remember as a child e.g. VE Day, or a story linked to the Arboretum.  You can share your images and memories by uploading them onto the following website: http://thepeoplespicture.com/nma/ A selection of these photographs will be included in the artwork, which will be approximately 4m wide and mounted on the wall.

El Brujo

El Brujo

In Peru, the El Brujo archaeological site became famous a few years ago due to the discovery of a ruler, the Lady of Cao, whose intact mummy is shown to the public today. With around 4,500 years of history, it is an important legacy of the Mochica culture and forms part of the Moche Route. Now, a new trail has been opened that includes of recently exposed marine friezes.Tourists in Peru travelling through this trail will find amazing archaeological sites such as the mud-brick citadel of Chan Chan. (The main Peru tourist board website is in English but, unfortunately, this page is in Spanish.)

The Portuguese capital, Lisbon, has a free light show, for the Christmas period. On the façade of Lisbon’s Arco da Rua Augusta will be “The Enchanted Doors” – a 3D sound and light show which is based on the concept of the advent calendar. The story is that when opening one of the calendar’s “doors”, elves will take spectators on a fantasy journey full of visual and sensory surprises. During the free, 15-minute show, visitors will be “transported” to places such as a castle made of sweets, an enchanted forest and a giant “waterfall” made of Christmas balls. A total of 12 light projectors will be placed around the building to enhance the visual experience and to light up the square during the show. “The Enchanted Doors” will be displayed three times a day (7pm, 8pm and 9pm) onto the façade of the Arco da Rua Augusta (Praça do Comércio) and with direct flights to Lisbon from Bristol, Edinburgh, Liverpool, London and Manchester most people will have access to a flight from their local airport.

Wyoming-JacksonJackson Hole Mountain Resort in the US state of Wyoming is preparing for its 50th anniversary celebrations. The skiing destination will be unveiling its new Teton lift for the 2015-2016 season, opening up an additional 200 acres of terrain. Three new groomed runs will be added and the new Piste Mountain Bistro will offer on-mountain dining. Local tour operators can arrange day excursions to nearby sites including Yellowstone National Park and the National Elk Range.

The west of England and South Wales will have a new transatlantic connection from next May. The Icelandic airline, WOW Air will start flights from Bristol Airport to Reykjavik and then on to any of its north American destinations – Boston, Washington D.C., Montreal, Toronto, Los Angeles or San Francisco. Part of the attraction, apart from not have to traipse to Heathrow will be the fare. It will be from £39 to Reykjavik and from £99 to the USA and Canada.

WOW air linking Bristol with Iceland and North America

WOW air linking Bristol with Iceland and North America

The downside is the changing of flights in Iceland will make the trip take longer and secondly, flights only take place on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays. Unless, of course, it is a success in which case WOW will probably make it a daily service. Given that it appears over a million of us travel from the south west and Wales to North America, that expansion seems likely.

Both British Airways and easyJet have announced  that their flights to Sharm el-Sheikh will remain suspended until the new year so if you were thinking of basking in the hot Egyptian sunshine over Christmas and the new year, think again. Or you might be able to fly on Thomson, Thomas Cook and Monarch which have only suspended flights until next month. Still, where one starts… The official line is that they will await advice from the government before re-starting flights.

Yesterday was Black Friday, an odious habit adopted from America. Hotels, travel agents and tour operators jumped on the bandwagon offering discounts or add-ons if you booked that day. Lastminute called it Pink Friday and Accor, Opodo and others turned a day sale into a weekend or longer. Why? Most people want to get through Christmas first and then consider next summer’s holidays. Or am I just wallowing in a previous age?

smoked salmon with a difference at The Gorgeous Kitchen

smoked salmon with a difference at The Gorgeous Kitchen

Airport food is a step above airline food – unless you are lucky enough to fly first class. Airport food has been improving over the years as michelin and tv chefs have been lured to help out. Now four British female chefs – Gee Charman, Sophie Mitchell, Jo Pratt and Caroline Artiss who operate The Gorgeous Kitchen at Heathrow’s termnal two have the accolade of winning the best airport restaurant in the world title. Awarded by the website The Daily Meal, will the four decide to expand and open restaurants elsewhere?

Five P&O ships were in Sydney arbour this week for the naming of two ships that were joining the fleet. That didn’t make as much news as a tweet from Stephen Fry suggesting “Now @POcruises polluting Sydney Harbour with more than just their ugly liners: music of the most hideous kind imaginable is vomiting out.” What has happened as a result? P&O has had lots of publicity in international media despite the fact that of Fry’s 11.7 million followers, only 145 retweeted his comments.

As part of the Chancellor’s spending review, it was announced that an extra £40 million for English tourism to help visitors discover our hidden gems, as well as our crown jewels, beyond London. Furthermore, the Chancellor has also confirmed that the GREAT campaign will continue, with an increase of funding to £60 million a year. In what could also be an important statement, Tracey Crouch – the tourism minister – wrote on her blog that “we are now no longer separating VisitBritain and VisitEngland but are bringing them closer together.” If these get closer where does that leave Visit Scotland, Visit Wales and Tourism Ireland?

Jamaica

Jamaica

And those three bodies don’t have another £40 million to attract visitors.   She also said that the Department for Culture et al will be publishing details of the tourism settlement in the coming weeks. That should stimulate some conversations in Cardiff, Edinburgh and Belfast!

Finally, another country, Jamaica, has announced that they are having a bumper visitor year. Jamaica’s minister of tourism and entertainment, Wykeham McNeill said 114,000 arrivals were recorded in September and contributed to 5.5% growth for all arrivals year to date.

 

 

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