Top 10 Places to Visit in 2014

1. Ushuaia, Argentina

Ushuaia is a city along the southern coast of Isla Grande de Tierra del Fuego and has been described as the southernmost city in the world. While visiting, be sure to see the Tierra del Fuego National Park and Lapataia Bay

2. Chang Mai, Thailand

Thailand has been a popular travel destination for the past couple years, and still remains one for 2014. Chang Mai specifically, has over 300 buddhist temples and  hosts many important Thai festivals, making it a necessary stop on your trip.

3. Rio de Janerio, Brazil

As the second largest city of Brazil, Rio de Janerio will be a popular destination in 2014 as it hosts the World Cup. The rich culture of carnival celebrations, dances like the Samba and Bossa Nova, and of course the balneario beaches, makes visiting Rio de Janerio at any time of year a must in 2014.

4. Hanapepe, Kauai

Hawaii is a popular vacation destination for those on America’s West Coast, but there is still much to see and discover. Hanapepe, known as “Kauai’s biggest little town,” is a charming area that is loved by both locals and visitors. What once were plantation style buildings, have been transformed to shops, local food stops, and art galleries, which serves as a fun destination to explore when looking for a break from the beach.

5. Kyoto, Japan

Japan is a country that offers so much rich history and culture, and has plenty of cities to explore. One city that should be on your list, is the former capital of Japan, Kyoto. The city is one where old meets new. Home to 2,000 ancient temples and shrines, as well as modern restaurants, Kyoto offers something for everyone.

6. Seward, Alaska

A small coastal town, Seward is known for its beautiful vistas, visitor attractions, and as the entry to Kenai Fjords National Park. The crystal water of the Fjords, glaciers, and possible otters, sea lions, and whale sightings, make this bucket list destination a must in 2014.

7. Bologna, Italy

Tucked in northern Italy, Bologna is a beautiful city that like other popular Italian destinations, boasts a rich art, food, and architectural culture. Known to be the culinary epicenter of Italy, Bologna is a must-visit city for the foodie.

8. Paros, Greece

Paros is a Greek island with pristine beaches that have yet to be discovered by tourists. The island which was once known for it’s fine marble, is small enough to explore, yet has plenty of beaches to enjoy.

9. Auckland, New Zealand

Auckland has become an urban hub with new bars, shops, and locally acclaimed restaurants. While many visitors skip Auckland and opt to explore the coastline, this city is certainly a stop one must make while visiting New Zealand.

10. Brisbane, Australia

Historically dismissed as a quiet town, Brisbane is one of Australia’s most cosmopolitan cities. It’s dynamic in what it offers visitors: boutiques, outdoor attractions, art galleries, and delicious restaurants – all while maintaining the small town aurora it has always been associated with.

 

Nemo Cancelled Your Flight? 7 Helpful Travel Tips

HipmunkTravelTips

Thousands of flights have been cancelled due to blizzard Nemo. If you’re, unfortunately, in that mix, here are some tips to help relieve the stress and hopefully get you home sooner:

  1. Use the Hipmunk Hotel App. Our App is built for last-minute location-based searches. Once you open the app, you’ll see your current location and all of the available hotels near your location. Also, big hotels are the first to get booked, but we have Airbnb, apartment and home rentals, in our search results for additional options.
  2. Use the Hipmunk Flight App: If you’re at an airport and trying to rebook a new flight, our app allows you to find available flights in the palm of your hand. If you’re in line at customer service, run searches and once you’re at the counter, show them the flight you want. Oftentimes, agents will say that there are no flights available, but with people moving onto other flights, there may be some open seats.
  3. If they offer to rebook you on a flight that leaves days later, take it. You’re guaranteed that ticket. If you want to try to leave earlier, just standby on all flights that leave before yours.
  4. Don’t leave the airport, or get there early every morning. Standby on every flight and hope people don’t show up (it happens!) Or, go to the airport early every morning, because people won’t make it to the airport on time, or have also been moved onto new flights. Getting to the airport early also lets you get on that standby list earlier in the day, increasing your chances of getting home quickly.
  5. Try other airports. If you’re in a metropolitan area with multiple airports nearby, check out flights at those airports.
  6. Ask the airline to put you on another airline. This one’s a bit trickier (especially when flights are cancelled due to weather) but it never hurts to ask!
  7. Put the customer service numbers of your airline and other airlines in your phone before you go to airport. This comes in handy when lines are long. Make calls while in line, and you may be on a new flight before you even get to the counter.

Share these tips with friends in the Northeast or keep them in your back pocket in case your flight is ever cancelled. Be safe Hipmunkers!

Why I love to travel in shoulder season

This is a Hipmunk post from Jodi Ettenberg of Legal Nomads

When people ask for advice on when to travel to a certain destination, I usually respond that they should chase the weather they want. You like your torrential downpours? Head to Southeast Asia during the monsoons. Of course, with global warming and changes in weather patterns, one season tends to bleed into the next. Which is why I tell those who are on the fence about weather that they ought to visit during shoulder season.

Benefits are plentiful: squished between the high prices of peak season and the often cold or rainy low season, it’s a perfect time to see the sights and still manage to find some deals. You’ll usually benefit from off-peak hotel rates and a friendlier set of locals since the crowds are gone. 

And you’ll get some deliciously beautiful sunsets on the cusp of a seasonal change. Take my trip to the Perhentian Islands in Malaysia. It was end of August, a time where the rates for beachside bungalows were halved, but the rains had yet to move onto the islands in full force.

Instead, daytimes were ideal:

Afternoons saw the clouds roll in:

And sunsets were beyond lovely, followed by a tempestuous storm:

So when is shoulder season? I tend to go just after high season ends, something that differs per destination. For Thailand, it’s been in mid-May to early June. For Malaysia’s east coast, late August to mid-September. For most of Europe, Spring and Fall will be your shoulder times (Easter through early June and late October to mid-November). The closer to high season, the better the chance that the weather will hold out. This Travel + Leisure slideshow of when to travel to get your shoulder on is another good resource for getting there just after the crowds and before the rain or snow.

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