- Christy Karras at Compass26 mins ago
If Abel Tasman’s name sounds familiar, it’s probably because you’ve heard of Tasmania, the Australian island named for him, or even the Tasmanian devil, the ferocious little marsupial native to it.
But Tasmania wasn’t the Dutch explorer’s biggest discovery: He was also the first European explorer to see New Zealand. Employed by the Dutch East India Company in his home country, he set off for the South Pacific via the island of Mauritius, off the African coast. By early December of 1642 he had reached the southeastern tip of Australia and landed on the island that would eventually bear his name.
- Rosemary McClure at Compass3 hrs ago
What destinations will offer the best travel deals in 2014? Where will you be able to get more for your money? We analyzed current travel trends, taking into consideration major events that will affect air and hotel rates next year – such as the FIFA World Cup in Brazil and the Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia — and put together a list of eight places that promise to give visitors more bang for their buck in 2014.
This emerging Central American destination is a budget hotspot that offers visitors a natural high with 18 volcanoes, rain and cloud forests, and world-class surfing. Called "the next Costa Rica," Nicaragua has many of the attributes visitors find in its southern neighbor but without the crowds, high prices and commercialism. Beset by a long revolution in the 1960s and '70s, Nicaragua has put that portion of its history behind it and is now considered the safest country in Central America.
- Andrew Zimmern at Compass21 hrs ago
Andrew Zimmern is a chef, writer and host of "Bizarre Foods America" on the Travel Channel . His podcast is Go Fork Yourself and he co-hosts with Molly Mogren every week .
The dirty word in the restaurant business is that it is a business. I do it myself – I run food companies and I take money in exchange for cooking food for people. As a restaurant and food service professional, I have to make sure I’m balancing the art, which is introducing people to new food, keeping them curious and sharing my viewpoint of the things I love, and balancing that with commerce and keeping my business afloat.
There are many foods that are strange or unusual to most Americans, that while they could be served in restaurants, they’re not served in restaurants – even though they’re eaten by enough people to support them. This includes foods such as raccoon or certain types of game meat. It’s hard enough for some of these game farms, based on the dollars involved and the amount they have to charge, to pass the cost on to the consumer and get high-quality venison in our restaurants, let alone some of the more exotic meats.
- Kelly O'Mara at Compass1 day ago
On Dec. 12, 1925 the Motel Inn (originally known as the Milestone Mo-Tel) – widely considered the first motel in the world – opened in San Luis Obispo, Calif. It charged $1.25 per night per room.
With the increase in the number and popularity of cars, travelers were starting to take trips that previously were impossible. But while most big cities already had hotels, there weren’t yet accommodations for these road travelers. Many were forced to sleep in their cars or camp overnight during multi-day trips. Arthur and Alfred Heineman proposed a chain of motor-hotels, with the first to be on the side of the highway between San Francisco and Los Angeles.
- Michael Clemmer at Compass1 day ago
We all have our castles, right? The adage, “A man’s home is his castle” comes from The Institutes of the Laws of England, 1628. Young Cosette, in “Les Miserables,” sings, “There is a castle on a cloud…” one where “…there aren’t any floors for me to sweep, not in my castle on a cloud.”
A castle was a necessity for European kings and noblemen of the late 10 th century, because it provided security; the original gated community. Castles were self-sustaining; they had a source of water and small farms that were worked by peasants. Comfortable? Nope, they were cold, dark and drafty.
Eventually the castle was replaced by the manor house, which was followed by the simple mansion and McMansion of today.
Dabananabunch photographed Tarasp Castle in the Swiss Alps.
- Christy Karras at Compass2 days ago
William “Buffalo Bill” Cody was one of the premier stage entertainers during a time when America was fascinated by ideas of an already fading Old West. His traveling cowboy shows earned him worldwide fame and helped set perceptions of frontier life that still persist.
In the years following the Civil War, city folks reveled in tales of daring heroes and frontier adventure. Although many actors in “Wild West” shows that toured the eastern half of the country were just that — actors — Bill Cody was the real deal. An Iowa native, he’d ridden for mail services including the Pony Express and enlisted as a horse wrangler for the Union during the Civil War.
- Michael Clemmer at Compass2 days ago
Born in San Fernando, Trinidad and Tobago, Sue Ann Simon has an eye for detail and an ear for language. Currently working as an assistant language teacher in Sasebo, Nagasaki Prefecture, Japan, she also dabbles in photographing water droplets. This droplet is one she couldn’t help but love. Love is where you find it.
- Bekah Wright at Compass3 days ago
As an illusionist, magician, comedian, musician and best-selling author, Penn Jillette is known for breaking the mold. He did just that on the sixth season of NBC’s “All-Star Celebrity Apprentice” when, as a finalist, he displayed his shrewd business savvy. Where can he be found over the holidays? Bringing cheer to travelers while headlining with partner Teller at the Rio All-Suite Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas. So where would the multi-Emmy nominee most like to disappear to for his own holiday celebration? He tells FMU of at least one place that can be ticked off the list…
What’s something you never fail to pack in your suitcase? I pack the same exact thing for every trip: two pairs of jeans and five identical black Dickies brand short-sleeve work shirts. That's my uniform.
Carry-on or check-in? Check-in. I hate having to deal with stuffing stuff overhead and crushing people's bags.
Window or aisle? I’m 6'7", so I'd be an aisle guy. But, I sure do like to rest my big square head on the side of the plane. So, can I change my answer?
- Kelly O'Mara at Compass3 days ago
Cal Rodgers’ landing at Long Beach, Calif., marked the successful end of the first transcontinental flight across the U.S. While today the trip from New York City to the Los Angeles area takes just six hours, it took Rodgers 84 days in 1911.
In 1910, publisher William Randolph Hearst had offered a $50,000 prize to the first person to fly across the country in less than 30 days. This prompted Rodgers to get outside financial backing to make the effort. Armour and Company, which was introducing a new grape-flavored soft drink, Vin Fiz, agreed to pay Rodgers $5 for every mile he flew east of the Mississippi River and $4 for every mile west. In exchange, Rodgers emblazoned his Wright Model EX plane with the Vin Fiz logo – marking another first: the first time an aircraft was used for advertising (the airplane is now at the National Air and Space Museum in Washington, DC).
- Michael Clemmer at Compass3 days ago
The Japanese do love their robots. This well-camouflaged person is, ahem … adjusting a giant robot nightclub dancer. Yep, and for 50 bucks you can watch her “dance.”
Somehow, during a time when almost everyone (well, 99 percent of us) is concerned about money, a Japanese entrepreneur allegedly spent – are you ready? – $127.3 million dollars to build Located in Tokyo’s swinging Shinjuku Kabukicho district, it is the equivalent of “Chuck E. Cheese” for Japanese salarymen.
The menu is short on food items, but has lots of drinks, which is good because watching giant mecha “cabaret girls” maneuvered by bikini-clad real girls can make a man really thirsty. There are also bikini-clad “Army Girls,” “Motorbike Girls” and “Little Drummer Girls” all dancing to really loud music and flashing neon lights. “Konnichiwa darlin’, can I buy you a drink?’’
Photograph by e_impact.