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You know New York City from film, TV and song. But visit this Travellers' Choice... more
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New York City
You know New York City from film, TV and song. But visit this Travellers' Choice Destination in person—for a weekend or a month—and you'll find a restless, energetic city with culture, sports, history, restaurants and shopping in abundance. Once you've visited well-loved landmarks such as the Empire State Building, the Statue of Liberty and the Metropolitan Museum of Art, you can step off the beaten path in thousands of directions: the medieval Cloisters museum in upper Manhattan, Yankee Stadium in the Bronx, a tour of pizzerias in Brooklyn... just to name a few.
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With attractions and activities galore, Chicago is everyone's kind of town. See... more
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Chicago
With attractions and activities galore, Chicago is everyone's kind of town. See all the famous sights, then go to a show in the theatre district or a Cubs game at historic Wrigley Field, followed by a late-night visit to a blues club or jazz bar. Culture hounds will delight in the multitude of museums, including the prestigious Art Institute and the Chicago Historical Society. Families will find plenty to do at Navy Pier and plenty to explore at the Field Museum and the Lincoln Park Zoo. You could spend all day strolling through Hyde Park or shopping along the Magnificent Mile. Discover vibrant ethnic neighbourhoods, architectural landmarks, delicious food and world-class hotels. From the top of the Sears Tower to the shores of Lake Michigan, Chicago offers so much to do, visitors keep coming back for more.
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Southern charm, hospitality and history imbue Charleston, one of the... more
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Charleston
Southern charm, hospitality and history imbue Charleston, one of the best-preserved cities in the United States. Visitors can't help but feel they have been magically transported to another era. Stroll down cobbled streets past magnificent churches, grand mansions and beautiful gardens, all meticulously maintained. History buffs will relish the old plantations and numerous historical museums dedicated to the Civil War and the Old South. Steeped in tradition, Charleston still manages a modern flair. Fine restaurants featuring gourmet Southern cuisine and fashionable boutiques line the streets. This effortless mix of past and present attracts visitors from around the world.
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Casinos, naturally, continue to draw tourists to Las Vegas. From penny slots to... more
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Las Vegas
Casinos, naturally, continue to draw tourists to Las Vegas. From penny slots to high-stakes table games in private salons, you'll find it here. But there's much more to Las Vegas than gambling. Our weekend itinerary highlights attractions of a different sort, from the choreographed fountains at the Bellagio to the Liberace Museum. Las Vegas is also surprisingly family-friendly. In an attempt to appeal to kids, the hotels have spent millions developing technically sophisticated indoor amusement rides such as the Race for Atlantis.
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Whether you've got a few days or a few hours, Seattle's condensed downtown area... more
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Seattle
Whether you've got a few days or a few hours, Seattle's condensed downtown area and fantastic transport system make it a wonderful choice for a short jaunt. Surrounded by lakes and acres of lush green forest, the city offers a perfect mix of urban attractions and outdoor recreation. Grab a latte and get ready to see the sights. Start at Pike Place Market, an authentic farmer's market where local merchants sell fresh cheeses, meats and a variety of mouthwatering delicacies. Visit the famous Space Needle for a dramatic view of the city and its surroundings. With kids in tow, stop at the Children's Museum or Odyssey, where getting messy is fine and learning is fun. When you've had enough of indoor attractions, head to the Washington Park Arboretum for a canoe ride and a look at rare plants. Or take a moonlit dinner cruise on Lake Washington to Blake Island. Art and history museums, unique eateries and neighbourhoods, open-air festivals and activities are all just a taste of what makes Seattle the jewel of the Pacific Northwest -- and a perfect weekend getaway destination.
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A few years ago San Francisco was riding high on the wealth of the dot com... more
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San Francisco
A few years ago San Francisco was riding high on the wealth of the dot com explosion. And it showed in outrageously high-priced hotels, restaurants and real estate. When the bubble burst, the city was forced to adjust. In fact, now is a great time to visit the somewhat humbler, but just as fabulous, cultural mecca of the Left Coast. Hotels and restaurants have lowered their prices, making it easier to enjoy a weekend here. One of the best things about San Francisco is that you can be in a museum in the morning and on a mountain in the afternoon. Mind-expanding cultural attractions exist alongside invigorating outdoor activities. Gaze at the work of Jackson Pollock at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art in the morning and then head to Muir Woods to peer up at gigantic redwoods in the afternoon. From the hippie haunts of Haight-Ashbury to the colourful Victorian architecture of the predominantly gay Castro District, and from Japantown to Chinatown, San Francisco is all about neighbourhoods. Each has a distinct look and vibe; you could easily spend a day in each or hop on a streetcar to sample a few.
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From its iconic monuments and buildings to its historic neighbourhoods and free... more
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Washington DC
From its iconic monuments and buildings to its historic neighbourhoods and free museums, the capital of the United States offers so many interesting attractions, it's hard to know where to begin. Consider a tour of the White House Visitor's Center, a wealth of information about one of the most powerful symbols of American history and politics. From there you can make your way to a number of moving tributes, including the Vietnam War Memorial, the Jefferson Memorial and the Lincoln Memorial. Washington DC is especially known for its museums. From the Holocaust to the history of space exploration and from dinosaurs to international spies, there's a museum for almost every area of interest, with many offering free admission. Great shopping, restaurants and Colonial architecture can be found in Georgetown. And The Mall, a slice of greenery in the centre of town surrounded by the buildings of the Smithsonian, is the perfect place to grab a hot dog, relax and take in the sights and sounds of this lively city.
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As a visitor in New Orleans, you can expect the locals to pull out all the stops... more
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New Orleans
As a visitor in New Orleans, you can expect the locals to pull out all the stops to show you a good time. And it's way more than just a demonstration of Southern hospitality-- "laisser les bon temps rouler," or "let the good times roll" is the city's unofficial motto. So take a tour of the elegant Garden District, hit a jazz club, dine at the Commander's Palace, or join the crowds on Bourbon Street. The Big Easy has much to celebrate these days, now that it's had nearly five years to rebuild from Hurricane Katrina, and you'll be welcomed with open arms.
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Many may remember Palm Springs as a long-ago resort town of choice for Hollywood... more
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Palm Springs
Many may remember Palm Springs as a long-ago resort town of choice for Hollywood stars. The city's vintage architecture has a timeless, retro quality that generates its own share of visitors. The Rat Pack doesn't hang out here anymore, but Palm Springs continues to offer the same great desert scenery and upmarket resort atmosphere that made it famous in the first place. Test your golf game at several well-known courses, including the Palm Springs Country Club, or pamper yourself at a day spa. Hiking and other outdoor recreation activities can also be found at several scenic reserves in the area.
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Elegant and sunny San Diego is truly a city with something for everyone. In... more
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San Diego
Elegant and sunny San Diego is truly a city with something for everyone. In town, a whole day or more could be spent in Balboa Park playing golf, touring the world-famous San Diego Zoo or visiting a museum. Just outside town, Torrey Pines State Reserve offers a somewhat wilder terrain where visitors can view rare birds and the stately trees from which the park takes its name. Children and their parents will be delighted with the city's wide range of family-oriented activities. From SeaWorld to the historic Gaslamp Quarter, there are events and exhibits to satisfy even the most hard-to-please. San Diego boasts an array of fine and trendy restaurants covering a melting pot of cuisines, world-class shopping and hotels from lavish to budget.
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The history of St Louis has been heavily influenced by westward expansion and... more
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Saint Louis
The history of St Louis has been heavily influenced by westward expansion and blues music. The big "must-see" in this region is the Gateway Arch, while other important sites include the Museum of Westward Expansion, the St Louis Cathedral and the Anheuser-Busch factory tour. The city offers plenty for the whole family. Children will enjoy the local zoo and the Magic House, while family members will also want to unwind at Forest Park, home to the World's Fair almost a century ago.
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Surrounded by natural beauty and blessed with an ideal climate, the striking red... more
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Sedona
Surrounded by natural beauty and blessed with an ideal climate, the striking red rocks of scenic Sedona attract everyone from celebrities to retirees. Whether you're looking for a weekend of golf and pampering or outdoor adventure and cultural activities, Sedona is the place. Several resorts boast championship golf courses and full-service spas. The state parks near Sedona offer breathtaking sights and ample opportunities to commune with nature. Red Rock State Park features an environmental information centre as well as wonderful locations for hiking, mountain biking, birdwatching and fishing. Shaded by cottonwoods and sycamores along the canyon walls, at Slide Rock State Park the adventurous can glide down a natural waterslide, while the less athletic can relax at picnic tables in the meadow. Sedona's beautiful surroundings and laid-back atmosphere have drawn artists to the area in droves. Indoor types will find plenty to do touring galleries, including the Sedona Arts Center, which showcases world-class exhibits and local artists. Those interested in ancient ruins and anthropology will be awestruck by the area's natural rock formations and preserved remains of old cultures. Visitors can hike past the ruins of the Sinaguan Indians on the Boynton Canyon Trail or investigate the unique geological deposits at Rachel's Knoll. At the end of a busy but invigorating day, great restaurants and shopping can be found a Tlaquepaque, a re-created Mexican village.
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Honolulu is a legendary surfing destination. But even if you don’t know a boogie... more
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Honolulu
Honolulu is a legendary surfing destination. But even if you don’t know a boogie board from a surfboard, you’ll find a beach here that appeals to you (and, if you want to learn the difference, you can find a great instructor to teach you). Swimming, kayaking, snorkeling, outrigger canoeing or just sunbathing… it’s all available in Honolulu.
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At the shore in Miami Beach, visitors can swim, surf and jet ski in the warm and... more
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Miami Beach
At the shore in Miami Beach, visitors can swim, surf and jet ski in the warm and crystal-clear Atlantic waters. You can also nap on the white sands, work on a tan or simply watch the beautiful people, especially at South Beach, a favourite of models and celebrities.
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Don't let the small-town, rural surroundings fool you: there's a side of Branson... more
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Branson
Don't let the small-town, rural surroundings fool you: there's a side of Branson that evokes Las Vegas without the casinos. Entertainment is non-stop on The Strip, a seven-mile stretch of live music and comedy shows, numerous restaurants, theme parks, shopping outlets and a multitude of hotels. You might catch Barbara Mandrell, Wayne Newton or Glen Campbell, all regulars at what some people call the Live Music Capital of the World, where close to 90 music and comedy shows run daily in over 47 theatres. But there's another side to this warm, hospitable town tucked into the foothills of the Ozarks: it's a paradise for outdoor recreation. The rolling hills offer 200 miles of trails for hiking, horse riding and mountain biking, and three scenic lakes are havens for fishing and water sports. For less strenuous water activities, hop aboard one of the many lake cruises. The kids won't want to leave Silver Dollar City, where thrilling rides are combined with a glimpse into turn-of-the-century Ozark life. You won't be alone on a weekend visit to modern-day Branson: the natural attractions and live entertainment draw seven million tourists every year.
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Famous for everything from the Red Sox and Paul Revere to Cheers and clam... more
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Boston
Famous for everything from the Red Sox and Paul Revere to Cheers and clam "chowdah", Boston is a popular destination for so many reasons. Part history lesson, part modern metropolis, the Hub offers attractions to suit every taste and interest. It's also incredibly easy to get around, either on foot or on the user-friendly public transport system, called the T. The Freedom Trail, a well-preserved pedestrian path, weaves in and out of historic neighbourhoods, from the lively Boston Common and Public Garden to the gold-domed State House and Fenway Park. Between landmarks, you can shop in the fabulous stores on Newbury Street, have a delicious Italian meal in the North End or browse the antique shops and distinctive red-brick buildings of Beacon Hill. The more culturally inclined will not want to miss the city's world-class museums, theatres and music venues. Family friendly to the core, Boston also boasts a renowned aquarium, children's museum and science museum, making it a great break destination for all.
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Sultry Savannah's combination of colonial architecture and southern charm have... more
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Savannah
Sultry Savannah's combination of colonial architecture and southern charm have long made it a popular weekend destination. In more recent years, fans of the Savannah-based book and movie, "Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil", have flocked here to see the Bonaventure Cemetery, the Mercer House and other associated landmarks. History buffs are drawn to Wormsloe, one of the only examples of a true plantation in the area, and the city's many museums and old mansions. Although Savannah is not thought of as an outdoor adventure destination, visitors can find hiking, cycling and swimming at the nearby Skidaway Island State Park. Savannah is known for its five-star restaurants, elegant historic inns and upmarket hotels.
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America's family fun capital, Orlando is home to Walt Disney World, Sea World... more
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Orlando
America's family fun capital, Orlando is home to Walt Disney World, Sea World and other famous mega-theme parks, including Discovery Cove and Universal Studios. But there's more going on in the city than just Mickey and Goofy and the gang. Once you've had your fill of the theme parks, adults will also be able to choose from several outstanding golf courses in the area, a family-friendly science centre, plenty of entertainment options and a fine art museum.
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Portland is a laid-back and friendly city in the Pacific Northwest with a... more
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Portland
Portland is a laid-back and friendly city in the Pacific Northwest with a reputation for great scenery, a good standard of living and fine micro-breweries. The city is bike- and pedestrian-friendly, and visitors won't want to miss the famous Japanese Garden, one of the largest and most beautiful displays of its kind outside of Japan. Gardening enthusiasts will also want to see the International Rose Test Garden and Washington Park, while other attractions include a wealth of museums and of course, the great outdoors.
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One of Hawaii's most interesting historic towns, the former Hawaiian capital... more
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Lahaina
One of Hawaii's most interesting historic towns, the former Hawaiian capital also has a rich Yankee whaling history. In the 1800s, Lahaina was the center of the global whaling trade and its beautiful Historic District is a National Historical Landmark. Dinner shows, such as Old Lahaina Luau and Feast at Lele, are popular with visitors. Ka'anapali Beach is one of Maui's best. The town, known as the jewel in Maui's crown, is home to 9000 people and to Courtyard Square's vast banyan tree.
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Savour a restorative drink in St Augustine's Fountain of Youth National... more
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Saint Augustine
Savour a restorative drink in St Augustine's Fountain of Youth National Archaeological Park, site of the conquistadors' arrival in what is now the United States. Signs of the country's origins are evident throughout the city, from 17th-century fortress Castillo de San Marcos to the watchtower of Fort Matanzas National Monument. Take a break from history at a local beach or indulge in some retail therapy among the many arts and crafts stores. Old- fashioned carriages, trains and trams offer narrative tours.
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Country music is the lifeblood of Nashville, home of several landmarks where the... more
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Nashville
Country music is the lifeblood of Nashville, home of several landmarks where the greats have played over the years -- and in some cases, continue to play. Musical attractions include the Grand Old Opry, the Ryman Auditorium and the Country Music Hall of Fame. But long before the music gained fame, Tennessee already had a long history, some of which can be explored at the State Capitol building and the state museum.
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Modern myth has it that these days everyone in Los Angeles has written a... more
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Los Angeles
Modern myth has it that these days everyone in Los Angeles has written a screenplay, is writing a screenplay or is just visiting. For those in the latter category we offer a road map of ideas to help make a trip to this ultra-hip, ultra-happening haven easy, fun and exciting. While LA will always be associated with movies and movie stars, it is also a culturally vibrant city that boasts a range of interesting attractions from prestigious art museums and galleries to fabulous theatre, both well-known productions and smaller fringe shows. Art enthusiasts will be stunned by the extensive collections at the J. Paul Getty Center and the Los Angeles County Museum of Art. Visit the La Brea Tar Pits on Museum Row, then investigate the trendy shops on Melrose Avenue. Families will not want to miss the zoo or the action at Universal Studios Hollywood. Of course, no trip to LA would be complete without a stop at the Venice Beach Boardwalk or a visit to Mann's Chinese Theater and the Walk of Fame.
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If you tried to imagine a place where the sights, sounds and flavours of Native... more
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San Antonio
If you tried to imagine a place where the sights, sounds and flavours of Native America, Old Mexico and the Wild West blend effortlessly with the hustle and bustle of a modern city, it would probably look a lot like San Antonio. Each year more than eight million people visit the shining star of Texas, and it's easy to see why. The Alamo, a famous fort where Texans fought fiercely for independence from Mexico, is just one of the many historic landmarks the city has to offer. Light a candle at the magnificent San Fernando Cathedral or peruse adobe architecture, exhibits and period furnishings at the Casa Navarro State Historical Park. Named after a key figure in the fight for freedom in Texas, the park is located right in the city centre and offers free guided tours. Roam along the River Walk, a two-and-a-half-mile stretch of cobbled and flagstone paths along the San Antonio River. If the children are with you, make sure and stop at HemisFair Urban Park and SeaWorld. Past or present, old or young, San Antonio offers something for everyone.
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It seems like everyone knows someone who's moving to Austin. In the past decade... more
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Austin
It seems like everyone knows someone who's moving to Austin. In the past decade the capital of Texas has grown steadily, attracting everyone from young urban professionals to artists and students. This rapid evolution is noticeable everywhere from the busy downtown area to trendy and pricey neighbourhoods. Despite the growth, Austin has managed to maintain its mellow, small-town appeal. A perennial "Best Place to Live" winner, it's also a great place to visit, offering a range of attractions and activities. The State Capitol, the largest in the United States, and the Governor's Mansion, which is open for tours, will appeal to those interested in the political side of Austin. History buffs can head to the Lyndon Johnson Presidential Library and Museum. LBJ was one of the city's most famous residents. In 1982, his wife "Lady Bird" created a Wildflower Center dedicated to preserving the native plants of North America. Austin also offers recreational activities from golf to walking trails in beautiful parks. The shopping, restaurants and nightlife offer world-class appeal with a homey Texas feel.
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