Travelrific® Travel Journal

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Archive for November, 2010

Down on the Farm in Ghent

By Linda Tancs

The stylish homes and condos in the Ghent neighborhood of Norfolk, Virginia belie its humble beginnings as farmland.  Originally known as Pleasant Point, James Morgan changed the name to Ghent to commemorate the signing of the Treaty of Ghent in Belgium, which ended the War of 1812.  Located in central Norfolk just minutes from downtown and the Norfolk Naval Station,  attractions include the historic Naro Theater, the Chrysler Museum, bistros on Colley Avenue and the boutiques on 21st Street.

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India’s Billion-Dollar Home

By Linda Tancs

Amidst the wretched poverty of Mumbai it’s hard to imagine a billion-dollar home.  Yet, like a phoenix rising from the ashes, that’s exactly what overlooks the slums of the most populous city in India.  Named Antilia (after a mythical island in the Atlantic Ocean), the 27-story behemoth was custom built for Indian magnate Mukesh Ambani.  Reportedly sporting 37,000 square metres of space serviced by a staff of 600, the palatial digs will serve as the primary residence for the Ambani family of five.

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Mules Come Calling at Calvary

By Linda Tancs

Calvary, Georgia, is some 200 strong but every first Saturday of November the tiny town swells to a megalopolis.  That’s when they celebrate Mule Day, a festival including a parade of mules, horses, wagons, any kind of mule drawn equipment, and antique autos.  Following the parade is a mule show.  The 38th annual festival also includes arts and crafts, a flea market, sling shot shoot, petting zoo, corn and cane grinding, syrup cooking, singing and lots more–even mule jokes.

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Secure Flight Rules Now Implemented

By Linda Tancs

Secure Flight is a safety program administered by the U.S. Transportation Security Administration requiring airlines to collect and transmit to TSA the full name, birth date and gender of passengers to better match them against watch lists.  The program is particularly helpful for those travelers whose names are similar to those that may be found on such lists and may erroneously be detained from flying.  The program isn’t new, but its implementation has now begun in earnest.  Travelers should be sure to match their airline travel reservations with their name exactly as it appears on the travel document (e.g., driver’s license or passport) to be used at the checkpoint for identification.

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Orlando’s Holy Land

By Linda Tancs

Time traveler wannabees, take note.  The Holy Land Experience will take you back over 2000 years to ancient Jerusalem.  This theatrical and historical experience on Vineland Road in Orlando, Florida features the Via Dolorosa, the road on which Christ carried the cross.  Atop the hill stand the crosses of Golgotha, where Jesus was crucified.   Other featured exhibits include the Dead Sea Qumran Caves, the Great Temple that once stood on hallowed Mount Moriah in first century Jerusalem and the traveling tabernacle that was the heart of worship for the children of Israel as they wandered in the desert following their exodus from Egypt.

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The Covered Bridge Capital of the World

By Linda Tancs

Parke County, Indiana may lay claim to the coveted title Covered Bridge Capital of the World.  That’s because they have 31 covered bridges in a country (and world) dominated by more modern means of travel.  Anyone familiar with The Bridges of Madison County understands the romance of the covered bridge.  Maybe that’s why they flock in the thousands to locales like Rockport, Indiana, where the Jackson Covered Bridge of 1861 spans Sugar Creek.  Mansfield Bridge draws some two million people annually at the Covered Bridge Festival.  We’re not talking relics, either.  The 245-foot-long Bridgeton Covered Bridge was constructed in 2006 in Bridgeton, Indiana.  Built to last?  You betcha.

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