Photo Courtesy of Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts
It’s never too early to start saving for next year’s vacation — particularly when you’re planning a $119,000 ultra-luxe splurge on board the brand-spanking-new Four Seasons Jet.
Indeed, the high-end hotel and resort company has decided the sky is quite literally the limit, unveiling the travel industry’s first fully-branded private jet experience on Wednesday.
Debuting in February 2015, the jet — a completely retrofitted Boeing 757 — will be emblazoned with “Four Seasons” on the fuselage, and have the company’s logo displayed on its tail. The redesigned plane will take 52 guests on bespoke tours around the globe and will include an in-flight staff, as well as a dedicated on-board concierge happy to book spa treatments or golf dates at pending destinations.
Salvador’s Pelourinho Neighborhood (Photo Courtesy of Embratur)
Salvador is known as Brazil’s “capital of happiness” because of its countless number of popular outdoor parties, including its street carnival. Its humble beginnings can be traced to 1549 when Portuguese settlers decided to colonize Brazil and make Salvador the capital of the country. As a result, this coastal city quickly became the main port of call for ships from all over the world that would dock and import their goods into South America. Salvador is no longer Brazil’s capital, but it is a magnificent city with unique architecture, historic museums, chic gastronomy restaurants and African-inspired music, which makes it a unique host city for the 2014 World Cup soccer games.
Salvador, the City of Music
Bahia is the musical state of Brazil. Its rich mixture of Brazilian, African and European cultures birthed genres and rhythms like axe, pagode and samba.. The state’s capital, Salvador, marches to its own beat. People here sing and play special percussion instruments like the berimbau, agogos and atabaques.
Curitiba (Photo Courtesy of Embratur)
Curitiba is a city that advocates sustainable living. The name of the city originates from Guarani, an indigenous language in South America, and translates to “lots of pine trees.” People traveling to Curitiba for the World Cup will admire the Arena Da Baixada, which is considered to be one of the most modern stadiums, as it opens its doors to more than 40,000 fans from around the world. Even with all of the excitement and energy surrounding the games, guests will enjoy Curitiba’s hidden gems, including its urban parks and city center.
Curitiba, the City with Sustainable Living
With existing public policies that focus on sustainability in urban public areas, the city of Curitiba is at the forefront of environmentally friendly living. These policies helped build and maintain 30 parks and forests, and the government’s efforts didn’t go unnoticed by the United Nations Environment Program, who awarded Curitiba a prestigious award for its recycling waste project.
To start your tour of Curitiba’s urban parks, we recommend going to the Parque de Pedreiras (Quarries Park) where the marvelous Ópera de Arame (Wire Opera House) is located. This gorgeous, translucent structure is built out of steel tubes and is full of windows, and it only took an impressive 75 days to construct.
Christ the Redeemer overlooking Rio de Janeiro (Photo Courtesy of Embratur)
Rio de Janeiro is a magnificent city for travelers looking for a well-rounded experience of Brazil. Rio is more than a popular backdrop for countless movies. It’s home to iconic soccer players like Pelé, the popular Christ the Redeemer, the classic bossa nova, the most beautiful beaches in the world and the world’s most entertaining carnival. Rio de Janeiro’s laidback culture and natural beauty will leave a lasting impression to adventure seekers, soccer fans and history lovers making their way to Brazil for the World Cup.
Rio de Janeiro, The City of Yellow, Green, Blue Through and Through
In 1950, Brazil hosted the World Cup, which left the country heartbroken and disappointed when the championship title was awarded to Uruguay after the team won the final game by 1 point in Rio de Janeiro. Since then, the sport and the country of Brazil have drastically evolved, and locals are ecstatic to experience with visitors the fruits of their labor after more than 4 years of preparation for the 2014 World Cup. It all ends here in Rio de Janeiro, and only 1 team will win the title of 2014 FIFA World Cup champions.
Road to Hana (Photo Courtesy of Chip Ward/ Equitrekking)
The island of Maui is amazing! Some people enjoy their Hawaiian vacation by simply relaxing on the beach while sipping a cold beverage, but there are several heart-pumping adventures that await adrenaline junkies on Maui, too. Here are 3 adventures you don’t want to miss when visiting this island paradise.
1. Go Road Trippin’ on the Road to Hana
The Hana Highway (Hwy. 36), which runs along the northeastern coast of Maui, is a thrilling road trip that the whole family can enjoy. Called “The Road to Hana,” this 52-mile coastal highway comprises more than 600 tummy-churning curves. Those who brave the route will be rewarded with dramatic coastal views and plenty of photo opportunities by beautiful waterfalls, lush rainforests, parks and gardens.
Top Travel Tip: Plan at least 3 hours to conquer the Road to Hana and take your time. This adventure is all about the journey and sightseeing along the way!
Tablelands, Gros Morne National Park, Western (Photos: Newfoundland and Labrador Tourism)
Ever fantasize about blasting off on a trip into outer space?
That might work someday soon for those with millions of dollars to burn. But for the vast majority of us who aren’t that lucky, traveling to Newfoundland might be the next best bet. The unique rock formations, stunted trees and brutally harsh offshore winds in this remote Canadian province are so out-of-this-world that they cannot help but lure those with an adventurous bent.
This is your invitation to the dance. In the spirit of March Madness, we’re kindly reminding you that you only have 5 days left to enter for a chance to win The Trip: 2014, the ultimate, 2-week trip for 2 to Spain and Morocco.
What do this dream vacation and your bracket have in common? Simple: If you don’t enter, you’ll never have the chance to walk away with the big prize — in this case, a $100,000 Travel Channel-approved adventure.
Remember, it’s your turn to be the Cinderella story: Enter the sweepstakes now >>
All About The Trip: 2014
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Photo Tour of the $100,000 Itinerary
Photo Courtesy of Phil Keoghan
He’s traveled the world as the TV show host of The Amazing Race. Now Phil Keoghan shares a few helpful tips he’s picked up along the way that travelers should know when planning their own next great travel adventure.
Tip 1: Always bring important documents and information. This should go without saying, but in the craze of packing it’s easy to forget the essentials: your passport, emergency funds, a second form of ID, credit card and a list of emergency medical numbers. Keep this info in a safe place, like a money belt, while you’re traveling.
Tip 2: Pack items for the moments you’ll want to kill time. Pick your choice of one or all of the following: a good book, a good movie, puzzles and/or your favorite tunes.
Cuiaba (Photo Courtesy of Embratur)
Cuiabá is a host city not to be overlooked by visitors when traveling to Brazil for the World Cup. In the 20th century, this gold-mining city drastically grew from 57,000 to 544,737 residents in 30 years. Today, the city’s 3 ecosystems (the wetlands of the Pantanal; the savannas of the Cerrado; and the Amazon), are treasured by locals and tourists. The city offers visitors magnificent opportunities to immerse themselves in nature, whether it be waterfalls, rivers, plateaus, or miles and miles of beautiful green landscape.
Cuiabá, The City of Picturesque Countryside
One of the many spots to hike and explore in Cuiabá is the Chapada dos Guimarães National Park (Parque Nacional Chapada dos Guimarães), a UNESCO World Heritage site located a few miles outside of the city. This enormous natural park gives people a place to go and explore the large orange and red-rock formations via guided hikes with varying levels of difficulty. Along the hike, visitors to the park see caves, canyons and beautiful outlooks.
Mardi Gras in New Orleans (Photo: Getty Images)
The final countdown has begun to “Fat Tuesday” around the world. But only in New Orleans can you celebrate with the true flair of a party-ragin’ Cajun. There’s plenty to do during one of the biggest annual celebrations in America. And in a multilingual city with a rich French colonial history, there are myriad options for Carnival fun. It’s no coincidence that The Big Easy is sometimes referred to as the “most unique in the United States,” and this annual bead-begging bash shows exactly why.
A direct flight from New York to New Orleans is about 3 hours. From Los Angeles it’s just 1 hour more. And from Washington, DC, it’s only a 2 1/2 -hour jaunt, all of which makes it easy to jump right into the Mardi Gras mix. Once you arrive in New Orleans you’ll want a comfy place to rest up and energize from the day’s travels. Here are a few suggestions for enjoying Mardi Gras in New Orleans that will fit almost any budget. READ MORE