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We’re funny (usually), controversial (sometimes) and insightful (always!). Our travel experts share their experiences below in hopes of hearing back from YOU. So read, comment and enjoy!

Posts in ‘Things to do in North America’

‘Sex and the City’ Madness Continues with DVD Release

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Just when I thought the Sex and the City madness had subsided, another wave of Manolo Blahnik euphoria swept over New York City last week at the ‘Sex and the City: The Movie’ Extended Cut DVD launch, which was, apparently, about as posh and exclusive as a ‘real’ film premiere – caviar, carpet, celebrities and all.

This meant I could finally see the film for the first time (wasn’t really up for the cinema queues at the time of release).  Now, as always, I am grateful to Sarah Jessica Parker for giving my name some added sex appeal (thanks!), but I’m not so sure about the strange, stretched out plot of her latest cinematic endeavor.  It was 2 1/2 hours long!  Great for a girls’ night in, I suppose, but I can’t justify owning it (I did, however, own the freebie, giant SATC Galaxy chocolate bar, awarded to my by Blockbuster for my release-day rental…)

I’m really not the best person to talk to about this era-defining series.  My colleagues, however, are big fans and have informed me that our On Location: Sex and the City Tour is well worth it.  Check out the list of famous stops here.

So, if you still haven’t had your fill—if the six-year TV series and loooooong  capstone movie weren’t enough—maybe the behind-the-scenes Sex and the City Tour is your ticket.

Let us know how it goes!

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Register to vote! Absentee ballot info. for U.S. citizens overseas.

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Hey, hey, hey American expats, extended vacationers, students abroad, dual citizens, and anyone who may have his/her head stuck in the clouds in some far corner of the world…….

The Presidential Election is just over a month away!

Have you registered to VOTE?

We try to make our blog topics light and fun, and we are thrilled that you’ve chosen to do a bit of world traveling, but we’ve gotta get serious for a moment:

If you are a U.S. citizen currently overseas and haven’t yet registered to vote, DO IT NOW.

OK? Thanks.  Here is the link:

http://www.fvap.gov/overseas-citizens/request-registration-absentee-ballot/index.html

Deadlines vary by state.  It should take you 10 minutes to register, max.  For some states, you can even do it by email!

Oh yeah: feel free to post below if you have any general comments on the election.  That would be super cool.  And it doesn’t matter where you are from – always good to get an international perspective.

THANKS!

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Mexico”s ”Day of the Dead”: one of the world”s unique festivals

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Millions of Mexicans will celebrate the annual Dia de los Muertos, or Day of the Dead, between November 1st and 2nd.

This national holiday is when all of Mexico, as well as Mexicans living elsewhere in the world, come together to remember and pray for departed friends and family.

In its present form it is a mixture of early Aztec ritual and Catholic influences, but traces its origins back to the indigenous tribes of 2,500 to 3,000 years ago.

Traditional altars are built and graves are visited with gifts of the favourite foods of the deceased, all in the belief that the spirits of the dead will find it easier to visit the living during the festival.

When first arriving in Mexico, the Spanish Conquistadors saw the locals practising the festival dancing in honour of their dead loved ones while wearing wooden masks, and thought they were mocking death itself.

Originally its timing was determined by the Aztec calendar, but to incorporate the development of Christianity in Mexico under Spanish rule, the festival was moved to coincide with All Saints” Day and All Souls” Day.

Now Dia de los Muertos is known all over the world and while other countries such as Brazil have comparable festivals, Mexico”s is as unique and captivating an experience.

Culture and Sightseeing – City Tours – Whichever city you are in these tours will help to ensure you do not miss a thing.ADNFCR-1652-ID-18790825-ADNFCR

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Mexico”s ”Day of the Dead”: one of the world”s unique festivals

0

Millions of Mexicans will celebrate the annual Dia de los Muertos, or Day of the Dead, between November 1st and 2nd.

This national holiday is when all of Mexico, as well as Mexicans living elsewhere in the world, come together to remember and pray for departed friends and family.

In its present form it is a mixture of early Aztec ritual and Catholic influences, but traces its origins back to the indigenous tribes of 2,500 to 3,000 years ago.

Traditional altars are built and graves are visited with gifts of the favourite foods of the deceased, all in the belief that the spirits of the dead will find it easier to visit the living during the festival.

When first arriving in Mexico, the Spanish Conquistadors saw the locals practising the festival dancing in honour of their dead loved ones while wearing wooden masks, and thought they were mocking death itself.

Originally its timing was determined by the Aztec calendar, but to incorporate the development of Christianity in Mexico under Spanish rule, the festival was moved to coincide with All Saints” Day and All Souls” Day.

Now Dia de los Muertos is known all over the world and while other countries such as Brazil have comparable festivals, Mexico”s is as unique and captivating an experience.

Culture and Sightseeing – City Tours – Whichever city you are in these tours will help to ensure you do not miss a thing.ADNFCR-1652-ID-18790825-ADNFCR

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Mexico”s ”Day of the Dead”: one of the world”s unique festivals

0

Millions of Mexicans will celebrate the annual Dia de los Muertos, or Day of the Dead, between November 1st and 2nd.

This national holiday is when all of Mexico, as well as Mexicans living elsewhere in the world, come together to remember and pray for departed friends and family.

In its present form it is a mixture of early Aztec ritual and Catholic influences, but traces its origins back to the indigenous tribes of 2,500 to 3,000 years ago.

Traditional altars are built and graves are visited with gifts of the favourite foods of the deceased, all in the belief that the spirits of the dead will find it easier to visit the living during the festival.

When first arriving in Mexico, the Spanish Conquistadors saw the locals practising the festival dancing in honour of their dead loved ones while wearing wooden masks, and thought they were mocking death itself.

Originally its timing was determined by the Aztec calendar, but to incorporate the development of Christianity in Mexico under Spanish rule, the festival was moved to coincide with All Saints” Day and All Souls” Day.

Now Dia de los Muertos is known all over the world and while other countries such as Brazil have comparable festivals, Mexico”s is as unique and captivating an experience.

Culture and Sightseeing – City Tours – Whichever city you are in these tours will help to ensure you do not miss a thing.ADNFCR-1652-ID-18790825-ADNFCR

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Take a free birthday trip to Disney in 2009

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Anyone visiting a Disney theme park on their birthday next year will be admitted free of charge, Walt Disney Parks and Resorts has announced.

The offer will apply to the Disneyland Resort in California and Walt Disney World in Florida.

Disney”s giveaway is part of the company”s ”What will you celebrate?” promotion, aimed at attracting visitors to its parks on special occasions.

Visitors to Disney parks will also be given badges with phrases such as "Just Graduated" or "First Visit" as part of their celebrations.

Chairman Jay Rasulo said: "Our goal is to mark the special moments in your life in a way that your family will remember forever."

The first Disney theme park opened opened in Anaheim, California in 1955 and the company now has parks in France, Hong Kong and Japan.

Miley Cyrus, the star of Disney”s hit show Hannah Montana, has said she plans to celebrate her 16th birthday at Disneyland on October 5th.

Family – Theme Parks – Treat the family to a day at one of the Disney resorts or to a splashing day out at a Spanish waterpark.ADNFCR-1652-ID-18790092-ADNFCR

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September is ”the time to visit SeaWorld”

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Tourists have been urged to visit the SeaWorld theme park in Florida during September to experience the "bigger picture".

In an article for Jim Hill Media, Eric Davies points out that the quieter season is really the best time to enjoy the Florida theme park.

Access to all of the "innovative" attractions to be found across the 200-acre park is thought to improve because the number of visitors is thought to drop by around 35,000 after August.

This makes "getting on your favourite ride, show or attraction there a relative breeze".

Mr Davies wrote: "During this quieter time of year, when it is a lot easier to get around this 200-acre marine park, you can really take in the bigger picture."

SeaWorld recently held a new green initiative for Californian residents with electronic equipment they are keen to dispose of, reports Sign on San Diego.

Those that dropped off any unwanted goods – from TVs to computers – received an entry discount voucher for the theme park and a coupon book for Fresh & Easy Neighborhood Markets.

Family – Theme Parks – Treat the family to a day at one of the Disney resorts or to a splashing day out at a Spanish waterpark.
ADNFCR-1652-ID-18784382-ADNFCR

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Met celebrates 125th anniversary with ”special” opera

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There will be a special performance at the Metropolitan Opera House in New York on September 22nd to celebrate the company”s 125th anniversary.

However, it will not only be audience members in the prestigious Big Apple venue that will be able to watch Act II of Verdi”s La Traviata unfold on the opening gala night.

Some 600 movie theatre audiences around the country will also be able to watch the performance in high-definition as part of The Met: Live in HD season.

Nearly one million people tuned in to watch last year”s 225 performances that were broadcast to theatres throughout the US, which will be shown in digital 3D this year.

The Metropolitan Opera House will also be hosting a tribute to Luciano Pavarotti on September 18th, which has free tickets available for those quick enough to apply.

Pavarotti, who died on September 6th last year, made his debut at the New York venue in 1968 with a performance as Rodolfo in La Boheme.

New York – From the dizzy heights of the Empire State Building to the serene Central Park New York has it all!
ADNFCR-1652-ID-18782615-ADNFCR

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Film festival in New York

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The Independent Feature Film Market will be taking place at New York”s Angelika Film Centre from 14th to 19th September.

Celebrating American film production, the annual event focuses on films and filmmakers operating outside the mainstream Hollywood studio system.

The market also looks at projects in progress, in addition to presenting workshops, talks and screenings of more than 200 different films.

It was originally established in the late 1970s as a way of countering the increasing number of blockbusters seen to be dominating the American film industry.

Notable filmmakers who have used the market as a career springboard include Joel and Ethan Coen with Blood Simple, Kevin Smith with Clerks and Quentin Tarantino with the controversial Reservoir Dogs.

New York has become a centre of film culture in recent years – a development spurred by the establishment of the Tribeca Film Festival by superstar actor Robert De Niro and producer Jane Rosenthal.

The city is now regarded as one of the film culture hotspots of the United States, removed from the vacuous glamour of Los Angeles.

From the dizzy heights of the Empire State Building to the serene Central Park New York has it all!
ADNFCR-1652-ID-18777915-ADNFCR

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St Louis provides top archery

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The Gateway Arch in St Louis is America”s tallest man-made monument and the short tram ride to the top treats visitors to unforgettable views across the city and the mighty Mississippi.

Looking East, Illinois is just across the river and to the west, the best view of downtown St Louis.

Every year, more than four million people visit the arch which is as high as it is wide – 630 feet – and is St Louis”s most popular landmark and attraction.

It also provides a fascinating insight into waterfront life through the years.

St Louis as it was in the 1800s is depicted in the entrance to the south leg of the arch showing images of the riverfront packed with fur traders, merchants and steamboats.

The story of the construction of the arch itself – which was completed in 1965 – is displayed in the north leg; a fascinating feature made even more so by the knowledge that, to ensure that the arch would meet in the middle at the top, the margin of error was 1/64th of an inch.

To eliminate expansion caused by the heat of the sun, all survey work was done at night.

Culture and Sightseeing – City Tours – Whichever city you are in these tours will help to ensure you do not miss a thing.ADNFCR-1652-ID-18773210-ADNFCR

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