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Three Separate Shark Attacks in Three Hours on Florida Beach

By Zac Thompson

Posted on 09/20/2016, 4:00 AM

During a three-hour period on Sunday morning, three surfers were attacked by sharks in separate incidents on the same stretch of New Smyrna Beach in Florida. First, a 43-year-old man was bitten on the lower leg. Then, half an hour later, a 36-year-old man was bitten on the hands. Just two hours after that, a 16-year-old boy was bitten on the inner thigh. While the wounds of the first t...

First Flight from U.S. to Cuba in More Than 50 Years

By Zac Thompson

Posted on 09/01/2016, 4:00 AM

In air travel, yesterday was one for the history books. The first regularly scheduled commercial passenger flight between the United States and Cuba in more than 50 years left Fort Lauderdale on Wednesday morning and landed in the central Cuban city of Santa Clara a little after 11 a.m.  JetBlue flight 387 marked the beginning of a new era in Caribbean travel, following decades of a tr...

Orlando Theme Parks Dispensing Free Insect Repellent to Ease Zika Fears

By Zac Thompson

Posted on 08/31/2016, 4:00 AM

Visitors to Orlando's major theme parks are now being offered free insect repellent as fears of the mosquito-borne Zika virus continue to grow in Florida. You can get complimentary mosquito spray and lotion at Walt Disney World, Universal Orlando Resort, and SeaWorld Orlando as of this week—even though no cases of mosquito-transmitted Zika have been reported in Central Florida and even tho...

A Guy Named Hemingway Wins Key West's Hemingway Lookalike Contest

By Zac Thompson

Posted on 07/26/2016, 12:45 PM

A guy named Hemingway won the annual "Papa" Hemingway Lookalike Contest in Key West, Florida, over the weekend. White-bearded 65-year-old Dave Hemingway—who is in no way related to the famous author—had entered the contest six previous times but never won it until now. Held at former Hemingway hangout Sloppy Joe's Bar, the event is a highlight of the Hemingway Days festival, held yearly to...

Eight Airlines Granted Tentative Approval for Flights to Havana

By Zac Thompson

Posted on 07/07/2016, 11:30 PM

Seems like there's a fresh piece of Cuba-related travel news every day. The latest: eight US airlines have received tentative approval from the Department of Transportation to operate direct flights to Havana. The flights could start taking off as early as September—when they do, they'll be the first commercial US flights to Cuba's capital city in more than 50 years. Here are the winning airli...

Dollywood Adds Calming Room for Kids with Autism Spectrum Disorders

By Zac Thompson

Posted on 07/05/2016, 11:30 PM

Theme parks—which are basically shrines to sensory overload—can be overwhelming for kids with autism spectrum disorders. All those noises, lights, and crowds can be downright debilitating if you're especially sensitive to them. For those young park-goers, Dolly Parton's Dollywood in Pigeon Forge, Tennessee, has introduced a special "calming room" where kids with autism spectrum disorders can ch...

Disney Opens Frozen Ride at Epcot

By Zac Thompson

Posted on 06/23/2016, 10:15 PM

Do you want to build a snowman? You might want to hug one after standing in the hot Florida sun to get into Walt Disney World's new Frozen ride, which opened this week in Epcot and became an immediate hit. Based on the 2013 animated film, the ride features the sort of sophisticated animatronics, high-tech audiovisual effects, and gentle thrills familiar from Disney kiddie rides featuring belov...

Disney Comes to Shanghai, the Watergate Reopens, and More: Your Travel Briefing

By Zac Thompson

Posted on 06/16/2016, 1:15 PM

Merchandise at Shanghai Disneyland (Mooshuu/Flickr) Your Daily Travel Briefing is our new daily roundup of travel-related news and information gathered from all over. Check this space each weekday for fresh updates. Here's what's going on in the world of travel today. * SHANGHAI DISNEYLAND OPENS TO THE PUBLIC (Chicago Tribune). And reports indicate the park is a stunner—colossal i...

Travel Briefing: Airport Lines, An Imploded Casino, and More

By Zac Thompson

Posted on 06/15/2016, 1:15 PM

The Riviera in Las Vegas (photo by Ashwin Kumar/Flickr) Welcome to the middle of the week! And welcome to our brand-new daily roundup of travel-related news and information gathered from across the internet. Check this space daily for fresh updates. Here's what's going on in the world of travel today. * ORLANDO THEME PARKS STEPPING UP SECURITY AFTER NIGHTCLUB SHOOTING (New York Ti...

Exploring South Walton, Florida

By Pauline Frommer

Posted on 04/22/2016, 4:00 PM

Drive for 26 miles in Florida and what will you see? If you’re by the shore, the vistas will likely be a daisy chain of beaches, hotels and strip malls. Especially strip malls. Sometimes it feels like Florida has more of those than any other U.S. state. But not in South Walton, a community on the Gulf of Mexico that comes to an end right before the state starts to dangle towards the Carib...

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