On the Go Mag correspondent Sarah John Afana braved the pre-Snowmaggedon last Saturday to hit The New York Times Travel Show at the Jacob K. Javits Center in New York City. More than 500 exhibitors from around the world set up booths, presenting almost every facet of the travel world, from Orlando to Thailand, from Sri Lanka to the Islands of the Bahamas. More than 20 thousand attendees visited the show floor and met with more than 150 industry experts, including CBS News Travel Editor Peter Greenberg, Travel Photographer Ralph Velasco, and even Paradise Found’s Ashley Colburn! And with more than 100 cultural presentations, The New York Times Travel Show brought the world to New York City.
On the World’s Stages
The travel show embraced culture with five stages, where it showcased the world’s gifts. The stages—named for each part of the globe—present 15-minute celebrations that highlight a certain part of the world’s culture. Some presentations included River Cruises, Japanese Festival Culture, Tourism Turkey, Malaysia Truly Asia, and more. Also on these stages were mini-seminars, including Top 10 Ways to Find the Best Travel Values (You really only need one way—contact your local travel agent!) and The Traveling Professor: Top Ten Ways to Save on Europe (did we mention travel agents yet?).
Some of the highlights of The New York Times Travel Show are the seminars, which are generally hour-long presentation about the state of the industry and about certain aspects of travel. Sarah sat in two seminars: Fodor’s Go Travel List 2015 and The Top New Travel Destinations (with Arthur and Pauline Frommer).
From Fodor’s Go Travel List, Sarah’s top destinations are:
– Norway—a beautiful summer destination plus the famed Northern lights in winter
– Pilsen, Czech Republic—“one of the biggest beer-making cities in the world,” including the Pilson Urquell® and a brewery museum that is hosting more than 600 events in the 2015
– Romania—stunning countryside with castles, UNESCO Heritage Sites, and of course, Transylvania; great for budget travelers; best in summer
– Piedmont, Italy—recently added as a UNESCO Heritage Site, home of Alba truffles (“highly prized white truffles, according to the Fodors website), and “so much wine,” adds Afana.
For a complete list, check out Fodor’s Go Travel List here.
The Top New Travel Destinations (with Arthur and Pauline Frommer) included:
– Belize—a family friendly destination, similar to Costa Rica, with additional cultural attractions and Mayan ruins with cave swimming. (Dad can feel like Indiana Jones when exploring!)
– Belgium—“The Birth of an Artist” exhibit at Museum of Fine Arts (Mon), a celebration of Vincent Van Gogh (Events throughout Europe will commentate the 125th anniversary of Vincent Van Gogh’s death.)
Note: According to Frommers, Europe will be affordable this year due to the Euro exchange.
– South Dakota-The 100th anniversary of Mount Rushmore will be in 2016, so beat the rush to the monument. Also, this year–buffalo roundup 50th anniversary and 75th anniversary for Sturgis Motorcycle Rally, including more than one million bikes
– Tanzania—Selous Game Reserve is one of the most endangered areas on Earth with elephant and rhinoceros populations plummeting. “Get there now,” said the Frommers.
– Asheville, North Carolina—hipper than Brooklyn, artsy, foodie, Smokey Mountains, great B&B’s in area
– Chaco National Historic Park-1,200 year old ruins that until 1880s, were the biggest buildings in North America; recently allowed fracking will cause ruins to collapse (so another go-see-now site)
– Argentina—Patagonia; currency cut in half, creating incredible stays and food for little bucks. (Have an empanada for me!)
– Austria—50th Anniversary of The Sound of Music, 150th anniversary of Ringstrasse
– Yellowstone National Park—Geothermal activity high last year and expecting more this year; highest geyser activity in history; renovated stay structures
– Washington D.C.—150th anniversary of Lincoln’s death and the end of Civil War
– London—800th anniversary of signing of Manga Carta; Queen Elizabeth becoming longest reigning monarch; celebrations abound!
– Vietnam—first national park opening-The Dong Van Karst Plateau Geopark
Read Frommer’s complete list here.
Afana notes, “Seeing some of the iconic sights in the U.S. during the celebrations would be an exciting time to be here.”
Where are you going in 2015?