Better known as the Land Down Under, Australia has sights that will pique every interest. The country's environment varies from lush rain forests to bustling cityscapes, depending on where your itinerary takes you. Whether you're seeking an outdoor adventure or want to lay back on the beach, your Aussie getaway can be completed with these 15 must-see sights and attractions!
Greece and Turkey are both rich in culture, history, and beauty. From the clear blue beaches to the ancient landmarks, it is easy to see why so many travelers make these Mediterranean countries destinations. Whether you prefer lounging on the beach, hiking in nature, or touring historical monuments, you'll find it all in Greece and Turkey. There are endless amounts of places to see, and here are 15 top sights to add to your itinerary!
Sure, paying $26,541 a night for lodging seems crazy, but we'd happily lose our minds for the chance to spend a weekend in this luxurious ski chalet. Nestled in the French Alps, the home is just a five-minute drive from the ski lifts, but the surrounding pastures and uninterrupted views of Mont Blanc make it feel completely remote. After spending a day on the slopes, decadent perks like a full staff (yup, there's a chef, butler, housekeeper, and concierge included), outdoor jacuzzi, and private garden could turn any ski enthusiast into a homebody. Though its 12-person sleeping capacity does lower the price a smidge, we think we'll keep this in our fantasy escapes file! See the dazzling spaces that won our hearts.
If you're looking for places to go, Scott recommends some cities in the US and beyond that are seeing better prices than others:
Average airfare is down 4 percent; Average airfare: $394; Average daily hotel rate: $128
Why you should go: "You will be there just in time to check out the Macy’s Holiday Parade and Tree Lighting Ceremony at Pioneer Courthouse Square on Nov. 29. Other attractions include Portland breweries, vintage shops and art museums. You may see a few inches of snow or light rain in Portland during Thanksgiving, so remember to play it safe by packing warm, water-resistant clothing."
Average airfare is down 4.5 percent; Average airfare: $406; Average daily hotel rate: $144
Why you should go: "Austin makes a great getaway for Thanksgiving, and as temperatures are slated to be in the 60s during the day, you can roam (or bike) the downtown streets full of live music, art galleries, shops and restaurants."
Average airfare is down 2 percent; Average airfare: $591; Average daily hotel rate: $336
Why you should go: "Cancun is a great year-round holiday destination, with temperatures averaging 80 degrees Fahrenheit during the day in November. Cancun offers a variety of leisure activities as well as exploratory activities, such as tours of the ancient Mayan civilization, scuba diving, snorkeling and sailing."
Average airfare is down 16.5 percent; Average airfare: $495; Average daily hotel rate: $364
Why you should go: "Temperatures in the Bahamas are usually cooler than in other Caribbean islands, however in November it usually doesn’t get any lower than 65 degrees Fahrenheit. Check out the Port Lucaya Marketplace and the International Bazaar on Grand Bahama Island for some great shopping and Bahamian cuisine. You can also experience the best beaches in the Bahamas by heading to Treasure Cay Beach in The Abacos, Gold Rock Beach on Grand Bahama Island, or Cape Santa Maria Beach on Long Island."
Average airfare is down 11 percent; Average airfare: $1,035; Average daily hotel rate: $231
Why you should go: "Londoners will be getting ready for the winter holidays by lining the Oxford and Regent streets with Christmas lights, as well as offering ice skating at the Somerset House Ice Rink and Natural History Museum. Weather will be chilly, and if you’re looking for an escape, you can venture to the West End theater district for some exquisite stage performances."
Average airfare is down 1.5 percent; Average airfare: $394; Average daily hotel rate: $150
Why you should go: "Toronto weather in November is usually still enjoyable, and there isn't normally snow at this time. Make the most of the top tourism spots while visitors are scarce by venturing to the CN Tower & EdgeWalk, Royal Ontario Museum, and Toronto Eaton Centre."
One thing that will help you when planning your trip is to use the average prices of round trips as a gauge when shopping for airfare. Travelocity says the average round-trip domestic flight is $415, while international round-trip flights are on average $760 each.
Graffiti inside your hotel room is not something you'd normally expect when you go on vacation. Check out this article about one man's quirky message trail from our partners at Yahoo! Shine:
While many guests swipe a little something from their hotel rooms, British comedian and artist David Bussell does the just the opposite. Since 2006, he's been leaving cheeky messages behind in rooms where he's stayed. Some are ominous, others absurd. Mostly they're simply very funny.
"When I was a kid I remember my parents redecorated their house and let me draw cartoons on the plaster before they put up fresh paper," he told Yahoo! Shine. "I was fascinated by the idea of the next tenant stripping it off one day and seeing the pictures I'd left them. I also left a fake suicide note under some floorboards as a teenager, but I'm less proud of that."
He usually hides the messages behind mirrors and pictures, to be found by the extremely curious. If he leaves notes out in the open, it's always somewhere that can be easily wiped clean or disposed of.
"I'm not into the idea of room service having to clean my mess up after me." He says he's left messages in "England, Scotland, Guatemala, Cuba, Portugal, Germany, Italy, Belgium, and all over British Columbia and the United States. I've squirreled some away in other places too, but those will only be revealed when someone offers me a book deal and prints the whole set!"
For more hotel graffiti, visit Bussell's Tumblr.
—Sarah B. Weir
Also on Shine:
Every traveling expert needs an arsenal of products to make their journey smoother. If you're stuck on what to get your friend or family member who's been bitten by the travel bug, then read on for some smart gift ideas!
For a glamping experience you'll never forget (at prices that can't be beat), Sunset Magazine introduces us to the West's most covetable, under-the-radar cabins — no tents necessary! We've selected three cabins from the November issue that have us itching for a weekend in the woods. Can you smell the campfire? We can!
Glen Oaks Big Sur, Big Sur, CA
While Big Sur has its share of luxury hotels perched on coastal cliffs, it's the under-the-radar spots — like the eight renovated cabins and two cottages at Glen Oaks Big Sur — that make visitors feel like they've struck gold. The coveted Big Sur Cabin includes its own slew of luxuries, including a private patio, outdoor fire pit, and two side-by-side clawfoot tubs for alfresco bathing. Visit during September and October to take advantage of the sunniest time of year!
Far Meadow, Sierra National Forest, CA
Sure, you could trek 12 more miles to camp in Yosemite, but Far Meadow's Base Camp might be the region's best-kept secret! Aside from being able to avoid Yosemite's notorious crowds and bus tours, Far Meadow's lodging options — including a remodeled Base Camp cabin, A-frame and log cabins, and two outfitted trailers — are worth the visit alone. Book a stay between May and November to swim, fish, and hike to your heart's content!
Point No Point Resort, Shirley, BC
For the kind of waterfront retreat where you might not see another tourist in sight, try Point No Point Resort on Vancouver Island. Just 40 miles west of Victoria, it's the perfect balance between secluded wilderness and easy accessibility. Aside from the fact that you'll pay less than $200 a night for Pacific Ocean views, the lure of two-person showers, hot tubs on almost every deck, and cedar walls make the cabins nearly impossible to resist. Try hitting up the restaurant's walled-in windows for the chance to spot otters, dolphins, and whales while you dine! July through September are the best months for soaking up tons of sun.
For 34 more cabin rentals to add to your bucket list, check out Sunset Magazine's best-of roundup!
FA-YAY! The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) is loosening its policy on the use of personal electronics during flight. The new regulations mean that fliers who are knee deep in the Divergent series won't have to turn off their ereaders or tablets for takeoff — as long as cellular service is turned off or the device is in airplane mode.
If, however, your flight has WiFi, you will still be able to connect to the Internet and use Bluetooth accessories with your device. Laptops are the only gadgets that need to be completely stowed beneath your seat or in the overhead compartment for takeoff and landing.
Reading ebooks, playing offline games, and watching videos are fair game for most of the flight. But passengers, at least for now, will need to hold their devices in their hand or place them in the back seat pocket during takeoff and landing.
Don't get too excited for holiday travel just yet. Each airline will need to adopt these new guidelines of its own accord. As of Nov. 1, Delta and Jet Blue began allowing gate-to-gate use of devices, freeing passengers to use gadgets like ereaders at any time during their flights.
Read on for important things to know about the expanded use of personal electronic devices from the FAA.