What’s hot: August 2019

By | Category: Travel tips & opinions

Just About Travel gives you the low-down on what’s hot (and what’s not) in the travel world right now

HOT

Checking out Changi Airport’s newest addition

image of Singapore skyline
The modern Singapore skyline © Singapore Tourism

Stopping off in Singapore? The days of killing time in duty free are, happily, a thing of the past thanks to Singapore’s Changi Airport’s new Canopy Park, part of the recently opened jewel complex. Passengers passing through Changi can expect a breathtaking 130 ft-high waterfall, a forest backdrop with 1,400 trees, a glass bottom bridge and a Topiary Walk among other attractions. Find out more at jewelchangiairport.com

Destination Chernobyl
Interest in travelling to Chernobyl has soared in the wake of the success of the HBO TV series of the same name. The five part programme focused in the events following the 1986 explosion that led to the world’s worst nuclear power plant disaster. Visitors to the abandoned nuclear power plant two hours from Kiev are subjected to a small dose of radiation and instructed to wear closed shirts and long sleeves.

Thomas Cook cracks down on plastics


Six months after making its “no place for plastics” pledge,  Thomas Cook says it has abolished the use of 12 million plastics so far. The tour operator has pledged that 69 million will follow over the summer. Straws, plastic cups and bags, cutlery and sauce sachets are all disappearing. Alice Macandrew, corporate affairs director, said: “The challenge is huge and we know how much we have to do but we also know we have to start somewhere.”

Vegging out in the Highlands
Saorsa 1875 – purported to be the UK’s first 100 per cent vegan hotel – has opened in the Highlands. Everything from the upcycled furniture to the food, heating and cleaning products is vegan. On the food front, guests can look forward to specialities such as watermelon sashimi, a vegan haggis and whipped cauliflower. Saorsahotel.com

Adventures with Airbnb

Airbnb is now about more than merely accommodation. The world’s biggest accommodation-sharing site has unveiled its latest concept: Airbnb Adventures. Led by local experts, customers will have the chance to hunt for UFOs (yes really) in Arizona or camp in a cliffside in Colorado. airbnb.co.uk/adventures

Look to the Liberty Museum
The turf-topped Statue of Liberty Museum which cost £55 million to build, has opened on Liberty Island in New York. Expect interactive galleries, a documentary depicting the statue’s symbolism and Lady Liberty’s original copper torch. Ferry tickets to Liberty Island include access to the museum. Libertyellisfoundation.org

Bagging a window seat

Could planes have more doors thus making it faster to board and leave a plane?

A poll of 2,000 travellers by Thomas Cook Airlines has revealed that window seats are the most popular on planes. Some 61 per cent of voters preferred a seat with a view, with 31 per cent opting for an aisle. Unsurprisingly only two per cent of people polled plumped for a middle seat.

La Paz gets arty
A project in Bolivia is aiming to use urban art to capture some of the rich traditions of Bolivia’s indigenous culture and turn the La Paz neighbourhood into a tourist attraction.

The project director, urban artist Knorke Leaf, said the murals seek to “bring joy” to the locals and attract tourists.

Taj Mahal knocked off the top

image of Taj Mahal
The Taj Mahal. Image © Frederic de Poligny

A tour of the sprawling Dharavi slum in Mumbai has been voted the most popular attraction in India according to TripAdvisor’s Travellers’ Choice Awards, beating the Taj Mahal.

The tours have become famous after being featured in films such as Slumdog Millionaire, which won eight Oscars, and the more recent Gully Boy. However many question whether tours of poverty-stricken areas are ethical.

Splashing about in American swimming pools
Outbreaks of cryptosporidiosis, or ‘crypto’ for short, are becoming more prevalent in the States according to a new report. The diarrhoeal illness is due to a parasite that thrives in the pool.




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