The Best Times to Visit Napa Valley for Beautiful Weather and Affordable Rates




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D.C. embassy tours: 7 open houses to visit this month


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After a two-year pandemic hiatus, Passport DC returns this month, along with its beloved Around the World Embassy Tour. On May 7 and 14, you can get a microdose of travel as D.C. embassies and cultural centers from three continents open their doors for history lessons, food and entertainment.

There will be pisco sours at the embassy of Peru, and bachata and merengue dance classes at the Dominican Republic’s, among other programming from the more than 30 countries participating in the first weekend alone.

European embassies will make their debut with the EU Open House on May 14 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Find more information on participating countries through the event website.

Steven Shulman, executive director of Cultural Tourism DC, recommends making the most out of the weekends by visiting embassies that are near one another.

The summer of revenge travel is coming. No one can afford it.

Jade Womack, who runs events site Clockout DC, created helpful maps with itineraries to visit embassies near each other. The EU Open House also made a Google Map for visitors. Womack warns that countries popular with American travelers, such as Costa Rica or Greece, draw crowds and smaller embassies may have longer lines because they can accommodate fewer guests at a time.

Womack suggests exploring less familiar embassies that should have shorter lines, plus more access to food and freebies.

Sorry our baby might ruin your flight. Please accept this goodie bag.

Austin Graff, By The Way’s local D.C. guide writer, suggests either going as early as possible or waiting until later in the afternoon after many families have finished tours. He also recommends starting with embassies that are farther from Metro stops. Embassies close to the Dupont Circle Metro may be swamped, while those by Observatory Circle and Van Ness Street should be less so.

Here are seven embassies to visit and tips to keep in mind as you tour “the world” this month.

Tickets or reservations are not required for tours, but you should expect to wait in line. In the past, waits have hovered around 20 to 30 minutes, but they can be double that at popular embassies, Womack said.

Bring a government-issued ID, as well as a mask since each embassy sets its own mask requirements. It’s a good idea to bring your vaccination card, too, since embassies might have mandates. Embassies are generally open from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. with some exceptions, so check ahead as you plan your visits.

For those with accessibility concerns, Shulman says the embassies along International Court have more contemporary buildings with ramps for wheelchairs and strollers.

Womack likes touring embassies that don’t often host public events, like the Embassy of the Republic of Iraq. Visitors can expect to see photography exhibits, sample Iraqi cuisine and watch musical performances with Dabka dancing.

1801 P Street NW, Washington, D.C. 20036

One of Graff’s favorite visits in past years was to Eritrea, which he called a hidden gem. Womack has a one-mile itinerary that starts with a visit to the Eritrean Embassy — where you’ll see cultural displays and learn about the history of the African country — followed by a walk south to stop by Iraq, Trinidad and Tobago, and Tunisia, ending at the Sultan Qaboos Cultural Center to learn about Oman.

1708 New Hampshire Ave. NW, Washington, D.C. 20009

From 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on May 7, the Royal Thai Embassy’s open house is covering all the cultural bases, from showcasing Muay Thai (Thai boxing), traditional music, Thai dancing and cooking demonstrations with samples promised afterward. For more information on the Royal Thai Embassy’s open house, visit its website.

1024 Wisconsin Ave. NW, Washington, D.C. 20007

Why you should dress up for your next flight

Graff recommends stopping by the Embassy of the Republic of Azerbaijan, located near embassies of Nepal, Iraq, South Africa and Bolivia. Visitors can expect cultural activities, live music and dancing, a photo booth, activities for kids and tastes of Azerbaijani cuisine.

2741 34th Street NW, Washington, D.C. 20008

Graff suggests putting the Embassy of Latvia on your list for May 14. Guests have the chance to tour the Alice Pike Barney Studio House, a historic building listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Fitting as the building was often used for musical performances in the early 20th century, the embassy will have Latvian folk dancers perform for the occasion.

2306 Massachusetts Ave. NW, Washington, D.C. 20008

This year, the open house at the Mexican Cultural Institute will highlight the state of Puebla in honor of Cinco de Mayo, which celebrates Mexico’s victory over France at the Battle of Puebla in 1862. Ix-Nic Iruegas, the center’s executive director, says visitors can expect a “full day of Mexican joy” with music, mezcal, storytellers, traditional food, lotería (a traditional Mexican card game) and a pop-up shop selling goods from Puebla including textiles, honey and Talavera pottery. Mexico’s open house runs from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on May 7, and 12 to 4 p.m. on May 14.

2829 16th Street NW, Washington, D.C. 20009

On May 14, the Embassy of the Czech Republic (one of Womack’s recs) will be hosting a dog show among other activities. The theme of the weekend is the 1930s, with entertainment from a jazz band and Lindy Hop dancers. If that’s not enough, there will also be a bounce house and folk fashion show.

3900 Spring of Freedom St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20008





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Expect traffic delays during VP Harris’ visit to Nashville


NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) — If you are out and about in Nashville this weekend, you should be aware of possible traffic interruptions.

Vice President Kamala Harris will be visiting Nashville to deliver the commencement address at Tennessee State University on Saturday.

Due to that, Metro police say to expect intermittent traffic interruptions between Nashville International Airport and downtown Nashville on Friday — likely between 4 p.m. and 5 p.m.

Then on Saturday morning, Vice President Harris will travel to TSU, so expect delays between downtown and the campus. She will then depart for BNA, and delays are to be expected on the route between campus and the airport.

Authorities say the specific routes and timing for the vice president’s motorcade cannot be made public for security reasons.

Find more Top Stories from wkrn.com

Drivers are asked to plan accordingly.



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I Traveled to Bali As It Reopened to Tourists — Here’s What It’s Like to Visit Now




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National Travel and Tourism Week: Visit Indy


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INDIANAPOLIS— It’s national travel and tourism week, which highlights the power of tourism in cities like Indianapolis.
  It also marks the kickoff to the month of May, which is Indy’s biggest month thanks to hundreds of thousands of visitors coming to town for the Indy 500 and other race-related activities.



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Visit Rapid City takes to the streets; kicks off National Travel and Tourism Week


RAPID CITY, S.D. — Visit Rapid City hit the ground running to kick off National Travel and Tourism Week.

5 2 Rc Street Team Vo00 00 29 11still002On Monday, the team talked to city leaders and business owners to spread the word about the resources they can share. The goal – to spread the word about the impact of visitors to the city. Last year, 2.5 million people visited the area and spent about $4.4 billion.

“We’re a great resource too, even locals. Hop on our website and check out what there is to see and do,” said Visit Rapid City Chief Strategy Officer Stacie Granum. “You’d be surprised at how many locals don’t realize some of the great restaurants, attractions, museums that we have right here, right under their nose.”

On Tuesday, Visit Rapid City is hosting Travel Rally Day with events designed to help the tourism industry.





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The Best Times to Visit Scotland for Good Weather, Fewer Crowds, and Cheaper Prices




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10 Ways To Visit Bali On A Budget (With Tips)


In the middle of Indonesia lies one of the most popular tourist destinations globally, Bali, also known as the ‘Island of the Gods’. Surrounded by turquoise waters and fringed by golden beaches, the island is certainly a surfer’s paradise. When searching for a beach vacation, there’s no better place to go than this stunning piece of land. Bali has a plethora of sights to explore, from temples, museums, and marketplaces to natural wonders such as caves and waterfalls. Want to visit Bali on a budget? No problem, here are 10 tips to make the best out of the gorgeous island without breaking the bank.

Related: You Won’t Be Able To Go Inside Tanah Lot Temple In Bali, So Is It Worth A Day Trip?

10 Online Bookings For Better Packages

Bali is one of those countries where booking things ahead of time online saves a lot of money. Unexpectedly, Bali has a fantastic tourist infrastructure and is well-connected to the internet; local company owners are adept at using the internet to promote and support tourism. A lot of money could be saved on everything from day trip drivers, accommodations, and tours to cooking lessons by booking special offers online.

  • Tip: It is not advised to wait for too long to not miss out on the greatest discounts.


9 Eating Like A True Local

There are a variety of Westernized eateries, especially in tourist hotspots like Ubud and Canggu. Sure, ordering a $15 avocado toast in Bali and pretending to be a digital nomad or whatever is exciting. However, the better thing to do would be to avoid the pricier Western establishments in favor of local warungs providing authentic Indonesian cuisine. What’s better than true authentic food? Eating at the local markets is another budget-friendly Bali food recommendation. There isn’t anything like Bali’s early morning and late-night markets to discover delicious Indonesian food for a low price.


8 Renting A Scooter Instead Of Getting A Ride Or Grabbing An Overpriced Taxi

 

Public transportation in Bali isn’t always available, and not all towns are small enough to scroll them on foot. Generally, travelers would have to rely on drivers to bring them to their destination. Fortunately, everyone in Bali is a driver, and finding someone to drive won’t really be a hassle. To save money, travelers can rent a scooter to get from point A to point B in town.

7 Hiring A Driver

While a scooter will get travelers from their hotel to that fantastic restaurant they heard about online, it will not get them to the temple they’ve wanted to see. For day travels, hiring a driver would be the best practice. It is certainly less expensive to split the cost with a group of friends or fellow travelers. It’s very easy to locate drivers advertising their services almost everywhere. But it’s more difficult to determine what price should be paid.

  • Recommended: It is recommended to schedule a pre-arranged service rather than hoping to stumble across someone on the street.

6 Paying With Cash

Many places won’t accept credit cards at all, and those that do will charge a large premium for the convenience. Instead, visitors will be paying their bills in Bali using cash. The quickest and often cheapest option to get the cash is the Airport’s ATM.

  • Tip: There is one crucial point to consider: if travelers want to use an ATM in a foreign country for a low fee, they should have the proper kind of debit card. Before the trip, people should take some time to see if the debit card or bank charges international transaction fees, sometimes known as ATM fees.

Related: You Can Climb Mount Agung, Bali’s Highest Point, But It’s Grueling: What To Expect

5 Getting To Bali Cheap

Citizens of some nations or sovereign states can enter Indonesia without a visa. These include China, Russia, South Korea, Japan, the United States, and others. Those traveling from other countries may want to consider dividing their vacation or taking a different domestic (cheaper) trip to Bali. People are recommended to travel during the off-season when fares are lower.

4 Seeking The Cheapest In Bali

Sipping premium wines is out of the question when on a budget. Travelers must avoid hotels and restaurants if looking for a cheap Bintang and instead go to a convenience store (mini-mart or mini-market as they refer to them on the island). Also, fortunately, to relax while watching the sunset, most of the beaches are free.


3 Bargaining Hard

The abundance of art markets in Bali is a terrific place to start, but it’s always hit-or-miss. It all relies on how well travelers’ negotiating abilities are trained. It may be a one-of-a-kind shopping experience, with beautiful artworks crafted by talented local artisans – all at low rates. Bargaining entails going as low as 40% of the quoted price before working the way up to a mutually acceptable sum.

2 Beach Spa Instead Of Expensive Luxurious Ones

After a long day of visiting Bali’s beaches and haggling at art markets, visitors can treat themselves to some beach massage. Beach masseuses are often well-trained and do an excellent job of kneading muscles, all while enjoying the pleasant sea breezes. Travelers can also get a great deal on a half-hour back massage or an hour-long body massage.


1 Exiting Bali On A Budget

Pre-arranged airport shuttles for the return trip are always the best alternative. Even some low-cost hotels provide complimentary shuttle service.

  • Tip: It is best to always make sure to have enough rupiah in the pocket for the trip back to the airport and any airport exit taxes that are typically included in the ticket.

Next: Bali Vs. Maldives Vs. Mauritius: A Three-Way Vacation Face-Off



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Joe Biden’s Seattle Visit Was So Predictable





Today I learned: Seattle presidential visits can be sad.

No, I wasn’t born yesterday, and of course I expected Joe Biden to walk immediately into the waiting arms of big-tech donors upon arrival. He did the same the last time he found himself here, in late 2019, just before all hell broke loose.

But the political establishment’s East Coast residency is never more depressingly clear than when a president pays us the honor of a brief and unremarkable visit to our corner of the country. Or, as Biden affectionately referred to it on Friday, “out here” and “Silicon Valley.”

Seattle media thoroughly hyped Biden’s fly-in from Portland—no Amtrak, Joe?—for Earth Day, with The Seattle Times giving it the rolling update treatment. No one was expecting Biden to hit up the Crescent Lounge Dua Lipa–style, but would it have hurt to take a detour or two from the podium, or at least stick around a while, like presidential stopovers of yore?

Instead, from nearly the moment Air Force One touched down at Sea-Tac Thursday evening, Biden’s visit stayed monotonously on-script. As he descended the stairs of Air Force One, a storm cloud hovered overhead. Then it started pouring like movie directors think it pours in Seattle. “Perfect,” a reporter muttered before going live outside the Westin downtown, where people lined barricades before losing interest in glimpsing whether the president would tip the bellhop.

The area, just outside Seattle Met’s offices, was noticeably tidier on Thursday, leading to more discourse about downtown. On adjacent streets, traffic very predictably snarled.

Meanwhile, 46’s motorcade took a cruise through the Arboretum. The president attended a political fundraiser in the vicinity hosted by Microsoft statesman Brad Smith at the home of another Microsoftie, Mary Snapp, on the Lake Washington waterfront. There Biden gave a midterms rah-rah, touting infrastructure projects and denouncing a Republican anti-LGBTQ bill before calling it a night.

The morning was even less interesting. No speech from a balcony. No Top Pot Doughnuts pickup. Not even a salmon toss. A late arrival at Seward Park for an Earth Day–themed address offered a fleeting moment of titillation—and some “where’s Dad?” despair from our local Democratic delegation—before the president launched into familiar talking points (energized youth, Scranton, “Mr. Amtrak”) and some geographical faux pas (“up in Colorado,” the aforementioned Silicon Valley facepalm).

Eventually, he got down to the business of signing an executive order to protect old-growth forests at a desk plunked down on the asphalt of a park access road. He let mayor Bruce Harrell hold his pen afterward.

Next it was on to Green River College in Auburn. Biden praised senator Patty Murray, who’s up for reelection this fall, and governor Jay Inslee, whom he called the “the environmental governor of the nation,” before delving into the distressing nitty-gritty of exorbitant prescription drug costs. His voice rose markedly when talking about parents who can’t afford insurance to cover their family’s needs. “How do you look at your child?” Biden said, slamming a fist.

It was perhaps the one memorable moment from an otherwise forgettable trip. By 3:30pm on Friday, the president was back in the air, seen only by a select few during his less than 24 hours in Washington state.

He could’ve at least made plans for a return trip. If he spent more time here, he’d know you can always cancel them later.





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Insider Tip: 10 Hidden Spots In LA You Should Visit


The city of Los Angeles is characterized by its numerous tourist attractions and now is a great time to explore the hidden side of LA, whether just visiting the city for a day or a month, or if a LA local is searching for a few new things to do.

Unexpected attractions, such as parks and galleries, await here! So, here’s a list of 10 must-visit sites in Los Angeles that you’ve probably never heard of!

10 El Matador State Beach

A 45-minute journey from LA’s west side, Malibu County’s El Matador State Beach offers spectacular rock formations and expansive views. In addition to families and couples, El Matador State Beach is ideal for everyone who enjoys soaking up the sun and sand on a beautiful stretch of sand and water. As well as some of the spectacular sunset views a tourist will ever see as the beach offers a number of sea caves to explore!

RELATED: Best Must-Do Activities In Los Angeles Only Known By Locals

9 The Old Zoo

This zoo has been closed in 1966 led to a popular picnic location for residents of the area. For an animal’s eye view of people roaming around, tourists may explore the dilapidated, graffiti-covered cages and even step inside of them. Griffith Park Zoo is buried behind a hiking trail, making it difficult for visitors to find it, which is perhaps why so few people visit.


8 The Sunken City

In 1929, a landslide wiped out a whole neighborhood. Now all that is left of this once-exclusive enclave are the foundations of abandoned houses and a few of the vehicles that once belonged to its wealthy residents. This area is also known as the “Atlantis” of Los Angeles by locals, the Sunken City by others, and even appeared in a number of movies and television series. Come and visit the sunken city off the coast of San Pedro, not far from the coasts of San Mateo and Orange County, if you’re interested in taking some intriguing images.


7 Walk The Bridge to Nowhere

The Bridge to Nowhere begins is one of Los Angeles’s lesser-known attractions as there is not much to see here but an eerie-looking bridge in nowhere. Tourists that will visit here will come across a gigantic, apocalyptic bridge in the midst of nowhere about halfway through the climb. In fact, this bridge was once an important artery leading to Wrightwood until the devastating floods of 1938 washed away the road and left it stranded. Still, many people visit this place just to take some photos and experience an eerie feeling while visiting the area.

RELATED: Los Angeles To Santa Barbara: The Ultimate Trip Itinerary


6 The Museum of Jurassic Technology

Many people thought that this museum is all about dinosaurs and technology. Fortunately, neither of these topics is the focus of this museum. In fact, this museum is dedicated to showcasing little-known scientific accomplishments. There are scientific, ethnographic, and historic items in the museum’s collection that other museums refuse to display. This museum is a must-see if a tourist is seeking some lesser-known attractions in Los Angeles that are worth checking out.


5 Mosaic Tile House

In the same way that the Mosaic Tile House captures the soul of Venice Beach, this house is a great addition to the list of hidden jewels in Los Angeles. Pann and Duran, a couple who have transcended the usual romance by weaving the roots of art and earth, have covered a quirky 1940s home with fractured glass mosaics and colored tile, resurrecting a sparkling gigantic genuine love. It all began when they were looking to install bathroom tiles, but they found the experience so enjoyable that they decided to cover their entire home in tiles, producing the stunning mosaic-tiled ‘Mosaic Tile House’. Now, this has become a tourist attraction in the city, but some still do not know that this place exists as some of the tour guides in Los Angeles do not actually mention this place.


4 California Institute Of Abnormal Arts

In North Hollywood, there is a nightclub and a museum with the abbreviation CIA. There are a variety of exhibitions, concerts, and other live events held at the institute, which is impossible to describe or define. As the term “freakshow” suggests, many of the activities cater to those who don’t have many other options for where to spend their time. Some of the displays include mummified clowns, the skull of “the world’s smallest Freemason,” the mermaid from Fiji, and preserved stuffed animals and human fetuses preserved in jars. An institution like the California Institute of Abnormal Arts serves as a reminder that Los Angeles has something for everyone.

RELATED: What You Need To Know About The Abandoned Speakeasy Tunnels Of Los Angeles




3 The Masque

In every city, there is a punk genesis tale that is unique to that place. When Brendan Mullen was looking for a place to practice, he came across a 10,000-square-foot filthy basement while looking for a practice space. Bands from all across California began to show up quickly, and the venue gradually transformed into a nightclub hosting punk-rock concerts on a daily basis. Attracting a wide range of people, the event was held beneath a well-known porn house called the Pussycat Theatre. The area was soon ‘painted,’ although its heyday was short-lived due to some really creative graffiti. Masque’s last event was held just five months after its opening and the building has since been demolished. Punk-rock legends have flocked to the basement over the years to see its graffiti, which has stood the test of time thanks to the current owners, World of Wonder. This area is specifically visited by avid punk-rock fans from around the world, but few of the tourists of LA know this place.


2 Box Canyon

There are more than a dozen “Box Canyons” in the United States, but the one in Los Angeles is by far the least-known and least-frequented. Narrow gorges, slot canyons, oasis, and badlands abound in the hills surrounding the canyon, making for fantastic photo opportunities. The Box Canyon is rarely visited by visitors since it is hardly featured in travel guides and is difficult to reach. Also, because the canyon was once home to a local cult, some individuals avoid it out of fear. Despite this story, many still go to the area to take some pictures!


1 The Last Bookstore

This is California’s largest used and new bookstore, with a name that represents the dearth of bookstores in 2016: The Last Bookstore. As a meeting space for the city’s most forward-thinking thinkers, the building also functions as a retail outlet. With its unique architecture and enormous collection of books and records, visitors, especially book lovers will feel as if they have walked into Alice in Wonderland’s personal library. This is a must-visit, especially for avid readers!

NEXT: Skip Los Angeles: These Cities In California Are Highly Underrated


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