Tag Archives | Tourism

“Rabbit Hole” – A real-life ‘escape the room’ game in Budapest

A player searches for clues at the Prison escape room at TrapFactory in Budapest August 4, 2014.  REUTERS/Laszlo Balogh

A player searches for clues at the Prison escape room at TrapFactory in Budapest August 4, 2014.
REUTERS/Laszlo Balogh

In Budapest, you can pay to be locked in a room where you must solve puzzles, find clues, and use your logic to escape.

via Reuters:

 In a ramshackle old building in Budapest, tourists pay to be locked up in a room and try to escape by solving a series of mysterious clues, opening locks and finding their way out.

“Rabbit Hole”, inspired by the 19th Century English novel “Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland”, is one of some 100 or so escape-room games that have sprung up in the Hungarian capital in the last three years, becoming a top attraction for tourists.

Escape games take advantage of Budapest’s many decrepit cellars and old rundown houses. These same spots served as venues for the city’s popular “ruin bars” in the past decade.

Hungary last week held its first nationwide festival of escape games, with hundreds of teams, Hungarian and foreign alike, entering dozens of rooms across the country.

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The Climate Change Cruise

Um… I’m not even sure what to say about this, except that it’s outrageously counter-productive. Anything for the almighty dollar.

Three Polar bears approach the starboard bow of the Los Angeles-class fast attack submarine USS Honolulu (SSN 718) while surfaced 280 miles from the North Pole.

Three Polar bears approach the starboard bow of the Los Angeles-class fast attack submarine USS Honolulu (SSN 718) while surfaced 280 miles from the North Pole. Via Wikimedia Commons

via Business Week:

Because of climate change and the melting of the Arctic, the cruise line Crystal Cruises plans to send passengers on what it bills as the first luxury ship to “traverse the Northwest Passage.” The ship, Crystal Serenity, will set sail beginning in August 2016 on ”a mystical Pacific-Atlantic sea route far beyond the Arctic Circle that for centuries captured the imaginations of kings, explorers and adventurers.” The cruise will last 32 days and fares start at $20,000.

Part of the reason that the Northwest Passage captured so many imaginations for so many centuries was that it was choked with ice and impossible to navigate.

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Sri Lanka Deports Tourist Over Buddha Tattoo

PIC: DOD (PD)

PIC: DOD (PD)

A British tourist got into a little hot water with Sri Lankan authorities over her Buddha tattoo:

Via The Independent:

A British tourist is to be deported from Sri Lanka, after she was arrested at Bandaranaike International Airport in the capital Colombo for having a tattoo of Buddha on her arm.

Naomi Michelle Coleman had arrived at the airport from India, and was detained when the tattoo of a Buddha seated on a lotus flower was spotted on her right arm, according to Sri Lankan police officials.

After her arrest Coleman, appeared before a magistrate who ordered her deportation, which will take place “very soon…tomorrow or the day after tomorrow,” a police spokesman said.

He added that the 37-year-old was arrested for “hurting others’ religious feelings”.

Cover your ink and read the rest.

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Peruvian Authorities Vow to Crack Down On Machu Picchu’s Naked Travelers

Screen Shot 2014-03-10 at 2.57.35 PMApparently no trip to famed cultural heritage site Machu Picchu is complete until you’ve wiggled your wang at it.

Warning: Video features naked tourists.

Via Peruvian Travel Trends:

There is a growing fad at Machu Picchu that officials hope to nip in the bud: tourists who pose for nude snapshots with the iconic Inca Citadel looming in the background.

For years, the practice has occurred pretty much under the radar.

That changed earlier this month when photos of two buddies from lands “Down Under” with buttocks bared, went viral, along with a YouTube video of a couple streaking across Machu Picchu’s principal plaza.

Peru’s media pounced.

Cusco’s new Regional Director of Culture, Ricardo Ruiz Caro, issued a statement that the incidents happened on the watch of his predecessor and that he should not be held responsible. He added that park guards at Machu Picchu and other historic sites in the region would increase surveillance from now on “to avoid these unfortunate events that threaten cultural heritage.

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Colorado and Washington Prepare for Cannabis Tourism

cannabisHopefully the other states will start to fall in line when they see what prohibition is costing them in lost tourist dollars.

Marijuana users in Colorado and Washington are counting down the hours before the western US states become the first to legalize recreational pot shops on January 1.

Blazing a trail they hope will be followed in other parts of the United States, cannabis growers and others are also rubbing their hands, while tax collectors are eyeing (sic) the revenue the newly-legalized trade will generate.

Enterprising companies are even offering marijuana tours to cash in on tourists expected to be attracted to a Netherlands-style pot culture — including in Colorado’s famous ski resorts.

“Just the novelty alone is bringing people from everywhere,” said Adam Raleigh of cannabis supplier Telluride Bud Co.

“I have people driving in from Texas, Arizona, Utah… to be a part of history.

“Over the last month I have received somewhere between four to six emails a day and five to 10 phone calls a day asking all about the law and when should people plan their ski trip to go along with cannabis,” he added.

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Embark On A Themed North Korea Christmas Tour

christmas tourPresenting the most dangerous and surreal holiday-themed overseas travel itinerary ever? Gawker reports:

A tipster forwarded us a promotional email from the Chinese travel agency Taedong Travel hawking “the first Christmas tour of North Korea,” costing approximately $1,000 (€740) for five days in Pyongyang.

“You can now join local North Koreans for a Christmas and New Year to remember!” the pitch promises. “Will you be visited by Santa Claus, enjoy Ginseng flavoured Turkey or listen to familiar Christmas carols?”

Taedong Travel’s founder Stuart Leighton, writing from Taiwan, assured Gawker that the trip was real. “The Christmas tour is particularly special as it has not been done before, and we were the first to arrange it with KITC about a month or so ago,” Leighton told us.

He added: “There is no problem for those practicing religion to enter the DPRK, but we stress to all our tourists that they should in no way try and force their views and ‘convert’ the guides or any North Koreans that they meet during a tour.”In North Korea, celebrating the birth of Jesus Christ—indeed, practicing Christianity in any way—places you at risk of imprisonment, torture, and death.

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Nuclear Reactor At Fukushima May Turned Into A Tourist Attraction

dark tourismA summer vacation spot that will give you a healthy glow? Thanks to a tip from Rhoid – Japan Today reports:

Paying visits to historic places where death and suffering occurred is known as “dark tourism.” After taking note that in 2011, or 25 years after the accident, the Chernobyl reactor site has become open to general tourism, a group of individuals in Japan is attempting to lay the groundwork for plans to make the No. 1 reactor at the stricken Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant a tourist spot.

The group includes author-critic Hiroki Azuma, tourism scholar Akira Ide, artist Kazuki Umezawa, media activist Daisuke Tsuda, sociologist Hiroshi Akenuma, editor Kenro Hayami and architect Ryuji Fujiwara.

Along with providing a venue to convey their own histories to future generations, the members aim for the activities to be useful in aiding in recovery of the affected areas.

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Via Reddit: ‘Why American Ex-Pats Go Crazy in Central America’

410W02MDYELOver at Reddit, Former American ex-pat NoblePeasant5 provides a little perspective on why some Americans seem to go a little nuts living in Central America. It’s worth a read:

Via Reddit:

I call it the Hemmingway experience. It’s no coincidence that so many expats are writers. There is the feeling that you’re doing and experiencing so much more than your peers and that you have to translate all of your deep insights into ink. You start a blog filled with scatching social commentaries and instagram filtered photos of waterfalls and flowers. You’ll always want to remember them.

You’re also now experiencing life as a D-list celebrity. You’re the center of attention where ever you go. Want to buy a burger in McDonalds? The entire place is staring at you and listening to your accent to try to tell where you are from. Want to get into a very popular club?

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Amsterdam Disregards a Ban on Tourists

Picture: LeDeuxAlpe (PD)

Bureau Official: Here is an example: A fifteen-year-old lad apprehended in the act of staging a holdup — fifteen years old and a marijuana addict. Here is a most tragic case.

Dr. Carroll: Yes, I remember. Just a young boy… under the influence of drugs… who killed his entire family with an axe.

Reefer Madness

Terrible news Disinfonaughts, despite all our campaigning, the evil herb will still be available in Amsterdam to anyone who wants to smoke it.

The BBC reports:

The mayor of Amsterdam says he will not ban foreign tourists from using the city’s famous cannabis cafes, after months of argument over new drug laws.

The move comes after the new government of the Netherlands said it would be up to local authorities whether or not to impose such a ban.

Mayor Eberhard van der Laan said banning the sale of the drug to foreigners could lead to more crime.

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UN Chooses Robert Mugabe As A ‘Leader for Tourism’

Robert MugabeDavid Usborne writes in the Independent:
Never mind that Robert Mugabe is under a travel ban for his cruel stewardship of Zimbabwe since independence. The United Nations, in its wisdom, has designated him a "leader for tourism" and chosen the Victoria Falls, shared with Zambia, as the venue for a holiday industry conference next year. At the UN World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO), based in Madrid, the thinking seems to be: "If the old man can't visit us then we should visit him." The honour was made official when UNWTO head, Taleb Rifai, arrived at the Falls for a ceremony to name Zimbabwe and Zambia co-hosts of the 2013 conference ... Kumbi Muchemwa, a spokesman for the Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) said: "I can't see any justification for the man being an 'ambassador'. An ambassador for what? The man has blood on his hands. Do they want tourists to see those bloody hands?"...
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