Massive poaching ring uncovered in Pacific Northwest

SEATTLE — An extensive poaching ring is responsible for slaughtering more than 100 black bears, cougars, bobcats, deer and elk in southwestern Washington state and northwestern Oregon, with many of the animals hunted with dogs and then left to rot, authorities said. “There was an absolute wanton disregard for our conservations laws,” Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife Capt. Jeff Wickersham said. Seven people – six adults, some of whom have previously been targeted in poaching investigations, and one juvenile – have been charged so far, but investigators plan to…

Airport delays in Europe – your questions answered

It may be the busiest time of the year, yet the EU have chosen this moment to enforce tighter border controls. As a result thousands of British holidaymakers are facing longer airport queues and delays with some even missing their flights homes, especially those travelling home from Spain. Why is this happening? Following the terror attacks in Paris and Belgium the EU has put in place new security measures on April 7. The rules require countries to carry out more stringent checks on travellers entering and leaving the Schengen area, a…

Saudi Arabia to open luxury beach resort where women can wear bikinis instead of burkhas

Saudi Arabia is known for its extremely conservative outlook and laws towards women and women’s dress, but it seems there might soon be some respite. Going by recent reports, the country’s new heir to the throne Prince Mohammed bin Salman has announced plans of opening a new luxury Red Sea resort on a stretch of Saudi Arabia’s northwest coastline, where women will be allowed to wear whatever they like. The resort, which will be a kind of “semi-autonomous” destination, will relax the strict norms of women’s dressing, so they can…

Pay to stay behind bars! Thailand has a new prison-themed hotel

People may love the luxuries of a five-star hotel but for those who like it edgy and different, there’s a lot more fun in staying at some of the world’s weirdest hotels. So, though as a (hopefully) law-abiding person, it’s (thankfully) unlikely that you’ll ever know what the inside of a prison would look like, an entrepreneur in Thailand figured why not create that as an experience for those with a curious mind. Joining the genre of weird hotels such as the “corpse hotels” in Japan or like the Hotel La Claustra in…

PARIS opens its first NUDIST PARK zone, but no voyeurism or exhibitionism will be allowed

France is one of the most-loved destinations for tourists around the world. From art, cinema, landscape to food and perfume — surely travellers don’t need another reason to visit the French Riviera. However, there is something new in the city that could attract many more visitors. The Bois de Vincennes park is now allowing nudists to experience being closer to nature and bask in the sun, unabashedly. But, mind you, the authorities have made it very clear it’s not open for voyeurs or for the sake of other’s enjoyment. This…

On the Shores of Time: Mezquita-Catedral in Cordoba offers a multi-layered way of seeing the world

History has often seen empires collide and dissipate, even as other kingdoms rush in to rebuild on the settling debris of legacy already past. Some legacies persist, however, as tenacious reminders of the many histories they’ve seen over time. Cordoba, the Andalusian city in southern Spain, is one such place and the Mezquita-Catedral de Cordoba, is one such site. The Crusades had taken their toll on the Iberian peninsula. In 1492, Isabella and Ferdinand (Queen Isabella I of Castile and King Ferdinand II of Aragon) completed the Reconquista (wars for…

In search of Famagusta: Wandering in a beautiful Mediterranean island, Cyprus

The mass of land appeared out of nowhere in the Mediterranean waters below as I woke up from a nap and raised the window shield.  It was time to land, though I was hoping to see some of Cyprus on my way to the capital city Nicosia, a good 50-odd km away from the Larnaka airport. Though a large portion of it is under Turkish occupation, the tiny island nation of the Republic of Cyprus generates a lot of tourist interest: a 648-km coastline with 49 Blue Flag beaches, the…

River herring, hurt by dams and climate, might be endangered

PORTLAND, Maine — The federal government is reviewing the status of a pair of river herring species to see if the little fish should be listed under the Endangered Species Act because of factors including dams and climate change. The National Marine Fisheries Service is looking at the health of the alewife and blueback herring populations. The fish live in rivers from Maine to Florida, and conservationists have long made the case that their declining populations pose a major problem for the health of ecosystems along the East Coast. The…

PASSENGER BAN: Airlines to create ‘no fly’ list as drunken arrests SOAR

Airlines are to create “no fly” lists for unruly passengers who disrupt flights. The central government in India are the first country to implement the list to prevent flight attendants being attacked and flights being delayed. The list has three levels to determine how long the passenger will be banned from flying for. With the times ranging from three months to two years, it is hoped that it will decrease the number of attacks and delays suffered in the industry. The no fly list punishments will abide by three levels…

Welcome to Miami: Wonderful wildlife, sunshine and old-fashioned grandeur

I was staying at the historic Biltmore hotel, a nostalgia-filled gem situated 12 miles from Miami’s raucous South Beach in the serene neighbourhood of Coral Gables. Built in 1926, it’s renowned for its famous guests, from Judy Garland to Bing Crosby, Kim Kardashian to President Obama. Notorious gangster Al Capone even committed one of his most infamous murders in one of the hotel’s 133 suites. Bullet holes are still visible in the grand fireplace.   Now, the hotel is known for its luxurious rooms, outstanding food and as an escape…

Cathay Pacific launches autumn sale with brilliant savings on flights to Hong Kong, Australia and South East Asia

If Hong Kong has always been top of your travel bucket list but you’ve been put off by the sky-high prices that often come with the flights alone, then you’ll want to check out Cathay Pacific’s autumn sale. The airline just unveiled a whole host of brilliant deals to help us beat the post-summer blues, and you could snap up some serious bargains on flights to the city. In fact, it’s not just Hong Kong that’s included in the discounts – you can also find seriously cheap return fares to other…

5 alternative ways to explore the Brecon Beacons if you’re not a fan of walking holidays

The Brecon Beacons in South Wales are renowned for their hiking trails offering spectacular views of the breathtaking landscape – so it’s no surprise they’ve become a firm walking holiday hotspot. However, exploring the scenery on foot isn’t for everyone – but despite the region’s reputation for being a hiker’s dream, there are actually plenty of alternative ways to discover this national park. From horse-riding across the countryside to canoeing in the river or cycling through the hills, there’s ample opportunity to ditch the hiking boots and still make the…