7 Amazing Reasons To Visit Atlanta

Atlanta might be a surprising travel destination this summer. After all, it’s nowhere near a beach and is located in the deep South.

However, summer is actually the Georgia capital’s peak season, despite the humidity that gives the city its nickname, “Hotlanta”. Here are seven things to do in Atlanta that might actually make you want to visit too.

1. Downtown Atlanta is known for its skyline that boasts the iconic Peachtree Center. The best views of the downtown can be enjoyed while riding the SkyView Ferris wheel, which stands 20 stories high. With 42 fully-enclosed, climate-controlled gondolas, you’re guaranteed a good view all the time, with your safety assured and your back dry. Centennial Park, where the SkyView stands, isn’t a bad looking place either.

2. The Centennial Olympic Park celebrated its 20th anniversary recently, and the festivities aren’t stopping any time soon. The park, which consists of over 21 acres of greenery dotted with exhibit halls, ballrooms, fountains, and water features, is a popular gathering place for Atlanta residents and tourists. This September, the Park will host the 10th One Musicfest, which will be headlined by legendary acts such as the Wu-Tang Clan, Usher, DMX, and Pharrell Williams.

3. If your idea of a romantic evening is watching a movie under the stars, the Starlight Drive-In Theater  might be a great place to bring your date. Since 1949, the Starlight has been loved by moviegoers for showing double features. During summer, the place becomes a bit rowdier due to the Rock and Roll Monster Bash, but alcohol is strictly prohibited on the premises.

4. As the converging point of different railroads, it is no surprise that Atlanta has become the culinary capital of the South. Restaurants such as Chik-fil-A and Waffle House are now household names. Other restaurants, such as Flip Burger Boutique, are also starting to gain recognition for upscale dining, even being featured on TV shows, and many Atlanta chefs have appeared in Top Chef and Chopped. Buford Highway, on the other hand, is the place to visit for international cuisine.

5. Rising 825 feet over the surrounding area, Stone Mountain is the most visited destination in Georgia. It is easily recognizable because of its unusual pink color, which is a result of the mountain being created when magma seeped through the earth’s crust. The summit of Stone Mountain is composed of bare rock and pools, and is home to several unusual species, such as fairy shrimp. One can see as far as the Appalachian Mountains on a clear day. Despite the controversy surrounding the site, Stone Mountain is still a natural wonder.

6. It isn’t surprising that a humid city such as Atlanta is also known as the birthplace of one of the world’s most-loved drinks, and The World of Coca-Cola is an interactive tribute to the drink that put Atlanta on the map. The museum features a multi-sensory theater, the smallest Coca-Cola bottling line in the world, and a working 19th-century soda fountain. Visitors can also try samples of over 100 different kinds and flavors of Coca-Cola products, such as Sparletta Sparberry, an African variety that tastes like raspberry cream soda; Inca Kola, a Peruvian favorite; and Fanta Melon Frosty, which is popular in Thailand.

7. Atlanta is known as the Hollywood of the South. The city is the shooting location for many popular films and series, including The Walking Dead, Vampire Diaries, Stranger Things, and Avengers: Endgame. The last one has just become the highest-grossing film of all time. With a variety of locations, from mountains to beaches to cityscapes, the state of Georgia can stand in for any kind of movie scenery. Atlanta Movie Tours offers guided tours to die-hard fans who make the trip to the place where their favorite movies were made.

7 Things To Do In Dallas Fort Worth, Texas

They say everything is bigger in Texas, and the Dallas-Fort Worth metroplex is a great example of that!

The largest inland metropolitan area in the U.S., with a population of more than 7,500,000 people, the region is one of the most diverse in the south, with a large Hispanic and African American presence.

Dallas itself is one of the most vibrant cities in the country, and there’s someone for everyone, from fine dining to history to sports.

1. Dallas is known for its professional sports teams, and while the NBA’s Dallas Mavericks and MLB’s Texas Rangers are wildly popular, the NFL’s Dallas Cowboys franchise is the sporting face of the city. The Cowboys haven’t won the Super Bowl since Super Bowl XXX, but they have had 33 playoff appearances since 1966. The Cowboys are known as “America’s Team” and play their home games at the 80,000-seater AT&T Stadium located in nearby Arlington. It is said that the stadium, including one of the world’s largest high-definition video screens, uses more energy than the African country of Liberia.

2. The city has over 406 public parks sitting on 21,000 acres of parkland. However, only one, Klyde Warren Park, can claim to be built over an operational freeway. It is located in the heart of uptown Dallas and connects the city’s Arts District with other parts of the city. The 5.2-acre facility is home to a performance pavilion, jogging trails, dog parks, and a children’s playground. It also hosts events such as swing nights, Zumba classes, and outdoor movie screenings.

3. If you are an aviation buff, the Vintage Flying Museum might be of interest to you. The museum, located in Fort Worth, pays tribute to America’s pioneering role in heavier-than-air flight and contains vintage aircraft of every size, from the single-seater Flea Triplane to the World War II-era B-29 Superfortress “Fifi”. The Vintage Flying Museum also throws a Big Band Hangar Dance every September, the proceeds of which go to the maintenance of the museum’s aircraft collection.

4. Standing 561 feet above street level, the Reunion Tower is one of the tallest buildings in Dallas and might be considered a symbol of the city and the metroplex as a whole. The globe at the top of the tower is lit by 259 LED fixtures and changes color depending on the occasion; for example, for St. Patrick’s Day, the globe goes green, while it is illuminated in red, white, and blue for the Fourth of July. Just below the globe lies a rotating restaurant run by celebrity chef Wolfgang Puck, featuring some of the finest Asian cuisine in the Southwest.

5. If you’re in Dallas to shop, Highland Park Village is the place to be seen in. The place was America’s first self-contained shopping center and still maintains its upscale character. Among the designer brands that have taken up residence at Highland Park Village are Hermes, Alexander McQueen, Chanel, and Christian Louboutin. The culinary scene isn’t too shoddy, either, with Dallas institutions Café Pacific and Fachini among the center’s mainstays.

6. Are you looking for a book? Half Price Books would probably have it. After all, their motto is “We buy and sell anything printed or recorded except yesterday’s newspaper”. The flagship store, located along E Northwest Highway, contains miles upon miles of bookshelves bearing used books, music, and movies. The clearance section also features children’s books at $1 apiece.

7. If you’re looking for timeless entertainment, Medieval Times Dinner and Tournament places you right in the middle of the action. Feast yourselves on a sumptuous royal banquet while watching knights engaging in a battle of skills, with the winner taking the hand of the princess! Of course, the banquet isn’t exactly medieval fare, and the knights are character actors, but the action is fast and the plot is fun anyway. All in all, Medieval Times is good clean fun for the entire family.

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7 Travel Hacks To Carry Out Your Airport Trip Faster

Airports are our gateway to destinations where we dream of having some incredible and memorable time-offs.

Without them, we won’t be able to fly out to wonderful places all around the globe. But with all the nerve-wracking hustles and bustles going on inside airports, we are frequently confronted by thoughts suggesting that airports might be the reincarnation of the underworld.

Good news is that we can control certain things to make our journey through airports less insufferable, or enjoyable even. Today, we are sharing seven travel hacks to carry out your airports trip faster than before.

Hack #1: Wear the bare minimum.

Dress as simply and as comfortable as you can when going through airports. You can still incorporate some personal touches and fashion statements forasmuch as you avoid clothing items that have metal zippers and metal buttons. By doing so, you may be able to shorten the time you will spend on security lines.

You can mix and match different outfits depending on your taste. Some clothing types to consider are basketball shorts, t-shirts, normal trousers without any belt, jackets, jumpers, hoodies, and even shawls.

Hack #2: Maximize your Ziploc bags.

According to TSA, you may put liquids, aerosols, gels, creams, and pastes in your carry-on bag provided that they’re in 3.4 ounces (100 ml) containers. The containers should all fit in a quart-sized resealable bag such as a Ziploc bag. Any containers that exceed the 3.4 ounces limit should be packed in your checked baggage.

If you can spare a couple more of Ziploc bags, you can use them to pack and organize other small items in your carry-on bag to make your turn at the checkpoint faster. To give you an idea, you can put items such as your keys, wallet, coin purses, or loose change.

Hack #3: Familiarize yourself with the airport’s layout.

Before you book your tickets, perform a quick research about the layout of the airports you’ll be flying in to. Familiarize yourself to the terminal locations, especially if the airport is a big one, and try to know what air carrier fly out from those terminals. This hack lets you know where you need to go and lets you move in a purpose. Once you book your tickets, you’ll know the shortest way to the correct terminal without the need stall on your way just to ask questions.

Hack #4: Sign-up for a TSA PreCheck.

If you frequently fly domestically, save yourself a lot of time and stress by signing up with TSA’s PreCheck program. Once you get approved, you are now entitled for the expedited security screening at several U. S. airports, not to mention that you no longer need to remove your belt, lightweight jackets, or shoes!

If you’re more of a frequent out-of-the-country traveler, then you may opt to sign-up with Global Entry. It comes with TSA PreCheck and it eliminates the stress you might get out of customs line after your return to America from your international trip!

Hack #5: Join the lounge.

If your flight is still hours away, there is no better way than to burn those waiting hours in the lounge. Joining the lounge can be comfy and it offer many perks such as good food, drinks, and free Wi-Fi. The lounge also has more decent seats and restrooms. Additionally, it makes a good place to receive real time updates on your flight.

If you’re a frequent flyer, consider paying an annual fee for all year-round access. If not, check if the lounge at your airport offers a day-pass. If the lounge doesn’t offer a day-pass, consider hanging around near the facility so you get to use at least their good Wi-Fi connection.

Hack #6: Save the airline’s phone number and follow their social media accounts.

While this hack might be obvious, some people still forget to do it. Pre-loading your airline’s phone number might save you a ton amount of time when your flight gets cancelled. In case of flight cancelations, expect a stampede rushing for the help desk. It will still be a good idea to wait in line and ring the airline’s phone number at the same time. Calling while waiting in line ensures you get helped as soon as possible. You may also connect with them through social media (Twitter, Facebook, etc.) if you fail to connect with a live person though their phone.

Hack #7: Be polite and considerate.

Courteousness and consideration should be normal behaviors unless when a person is really pissed off because of certain stress-inducing events. As much as possible, avoid being rude to the people you interact with in airports since being polite pay more often than not. Negative reactions might only worsen and lengthen your stay at the airport. When asking for questions and special requests, try to be as kind as possible and give them a smile.

We can say that airports are the Alpha and the Omega of each of our travels and having a busted start and end point after our travel wouldn’t be so much fun. At least, now that you’re familiar with these seven travel hacks, you will have more control of how your trips through the airports can go. Enjoy!

7 Reasons To Have A Vacation In Baltimore

Baltimore might be a long way from its old, glorious heyday.

While most people see the city as just another stop on the train line from Washington, D.C. to Philadelphia, its numerous neighborhoods are home to a dizzying variety of cultures, thanks to its former status as the second leading port of entry for immigrants.

The city has since shifted over to a service-based economy, and is constantly reinventing itself. In fact, Baltimore is an underrated vacation destination.

Here are seven reasons you should visit Charm City.

1. Baltimore is the second largest seaport in the Mid-Atlantic region, and the local cuisine features a lot of seafood. The local markets, including Cross Street Market and Belvedere Square Market, are great places to slurp some oysters and down some crab cakes. Feeling a little adventurous? Order some raccoon or muskrat at Faidley’s at Lexington Market.

2. The beer scene in “Balamer” is more than just Natty Bo (although you have to admit it’s pretty good beer).  Fells Point is the day drinking center of the city, with dozens of pubs. Choose from among 100 beers on tap at Max’s Taphouse, which has been in operation for more than 30 years. Max’s was ranked 22nd in RateBeer’s “Top Beer Destinations in the World” list and is still recognized as a top beer bar in the country. Quite a long way from the times when the old Max’s on Broadway hosted the likes of the Smashing Pumpkins and Hunter S. Thompson, although you could still partake in some karaoke on Friday nights.

3. A visit to the National Aquarium should be on your list of must-dos when you’re in the city. The aquarium is home to over 600 species of fish, marine mammals, reptiles, and birds, including blacktip reef sharks; Calypso, a 500-pound green sea turtle; golden lion tamarins; and Atlantic bottlenose dolphins. While the National Aquarium is almost always packed, the best times to visit are before 11 AM and after 3 PM. Visit after 5 PM on Fridays and pay just half the price of admission.

4. Baltimore’s image as a hard-nosed, gritty town will forever be associated the TV series The Wire. Although the series has aired its last episode more than a decade ago, fans of the series flock to Baltimore to trace the steps of Detective Jimmy McNulty.  While there are no formal guided tours inspired by the series, you could visit several Baltimore landmarks that featured heavily in the series, such as Bethel Church, The Block, and Greenmount Cemetery.

5. Baltimore is a regional arts center, and institutions like the Baltimore Museum of Art keep the flames of culture alive in the Mid-Atlantic. Feast your eyes on artworks by Pablo Picasso, Paul Gaugin, Vincent Van Gogh, and Paul Cezanne, including the 1897 masterpiece Mont Sainte-Victoire Seen from the Bibémus Quarry. You don’t have to pay any entrance fees either; since 2006, admission to the museum has been free year-round.

6. If you’re a bibliophile, visit the George Peabody Library located on the Peabody Institute campus. The library holds more than 300,000 books, most of which were published in the 19th century or earlier. That is, of course, you could keep yourself from looking up at the library atrium’s majestic ceiling, which hangs more than 60 feet in the air, or the ornately designed floors, columns, and book shelves. 

7. As a city located on a harbor of Chesapeake Bay, Baltimore has a long and rich seafaring tradition. The Historic Ships in Baltimore, located in the Inner Harbor, contains a collection of museum ships, including a World War II submarine, the sloop-of-war USS Constitution, a U.S. Coast Guard cutter, and a long-serving lightship. The Seven Foot Knoll Light, a decommissioned lighthouse, is also part of the exhibit. Sign up for a tour of the museum ships or book an “Overnight Adventure”, complete with meals and an overnight stay in a bunk.

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