The American West Coast is Ripe for Gastronomical Tourism

Tourists in the United States who are looking for the best cuisine they can taste during their visits should strongly consider staying in the West Coast. According to the 2017 list of Best New Chefs published by Food & Wine Magazine, more than half of the selected chefs are from California, Oregon and Washington.

 

Up until the late 20th century, New York, Miami and New Orleans routinely topped the lists of best chefs; however, that no longer seems to be the case. The West Coast has been quietly dominating the American gastronomical scene, and this is a trend that many tourists are noticing.

 

Some of the best restaurants in the United States are either located in the West Coast or are otherwise managed by West Coast chefs. One such restaurant is Han Oak in Portland, operated by a chef who trained in New York before moving back home to open a Korean eatery that specializes in noodles, dumplings and barbecues.

 

The abundance of fresh produce in California, Oregon and Washington is another reason why local chefs are either returning or choosing to stay in the West Coast. Such is the case of Kismet, a trendy restaurant in Los Angeles that features a Mediterranean menu. It so happens that California’s agriculture offers many of the fresh ingredients needed in Turkish, Greek and Italian recipes, and this is something that chefs can certainly appreciate.

 

Another restaurant attracting many tourists is Californios, located in San Francisco. This restaurant is dedicated to the fusion of Californian and Mexican cuisines, and the result is tastier than Tex-Mex.

 

West Coast Travel to and from Hawaii to get Cheaper

One of the most popular flights for tourists is from the west coast of the United States to Hawaii. For people that live anywhere in the country, Los Angeles, Seattle, and San Francisco are very common places for a layover. Unfortunately, travel to and from the west coast to Hawaii is often very expensive. While flying to Hawaii is not cheap, there is an airline today that is boasting incredibly low prices (http://www.cntraveler.com/story/flight-deal-hawaii-from-350-round-trip).

 

Virgin Airlines, which is already known for its great service compared to other major airlines, is now providing very low fares for people that are trying to go from the west coast to one of several different Hawaiian destinations. Virgin America is now offering round trip flights from Los Angeles to Maui and Honolulu for as low as $350. Those that are looking to travel to and from San Francisco and Seattle will also get great deals.

 

These prices that are offered by the airlines are less than half of what some competing airlines are offering today. Those that are looking to take a trip and would like to save money should consider booking soon. The company will be only offering these rates for summer travel. Once the current promotion is over, flights are likely to go back up to where they were in the past. Those that are looking to travel could either book the flights directly through the airline or take advantage of package deals through Expedia and other online travel booking websites available today.

 

Chinese Tourists Flock to the West Coast in Search of Nature

Oregon is one of the most pristine tourism destinations in the West Coast of the United States, and this happens to be what many Chinese tourists are looking for these days.

 

Disneyland, Las Vegas and San Francisco are still popular tourism spots for tourists arriving from China, but those who are returning for a second and even third visit are more interested in the sheer natural beauty of Oregon as well as its culinary offerings.

 

According to a recent article published in China Daily, officials in charge of the Oregon Tourism Commission have noticed an emerging trend among Chinese tourists in the sense that they are more attracted to clean water, fresh air, pristine views, fresh fruit and vegetables, seafood cuisine, and craft beers. One of the reasons behind this travel trend is that many cities in China are overly industrialized and have lost their natural beauty.

 

Now that Chinese tourists can be approved for a 10-year travel visa to visit the U.S., tourism officials in Oregon are excited about the opportunity to lure more visitors. At the Active America-China Summit, a tourism industry meeting that took place in Portland in April, attendees noted that the $226 million spent by Chinese tourists in 2016 could be increased with the right marketing approach.

 

The most popular nature attraction for Chinese visitors is the Crater Lake National Park. These tourists are also very interested in visiting craft breweries and catching Portland Trailblazer when teams such as the Los Angeles Lakers or Boston Celtics visit.

 

Photographer Begins Road Trip to Capture Abandoned Drive-Ins

Lindsey Rickert is a photographer passionate about drive-in movie theaters. While she has fond memories of her first viewing at age seven or eight, a chance encounter in Oregon rekindled her interest in those venues right as their operations have continued to diminish. Currently, only 324 drive-ins are operational; a ghost of a movie-going experience that used to number in excess of 4,000 locations.

 

After encountering Oregon’s abandoned 99W drive-in, Rickert decided to plan a road trip. Her goal: to photograph as many drive-ins in the country as possible. Rickert’s portfolio for this adventure covered 28 different theaters, some of which are still operational.

 

Rickert began planning her route by combining Google and Flickr to find websites dedicated to drive-ins. She then laid out a massive map and started pushing thumbtacks into every point of interest until a route began to manifest. After marking the abandoned sites, Rickert planned out the best path to travel between abandoned and active sites-only one site was discovered demolished.

 

When asked about her favorite locales, Rickert was awestruck by an abandoned theater in Nevada, right as a heavy storm began to rage. After the weather cleared, Rickert was able to capture a beautiful sunset rainbow against the theater’s projection wall.

 

When asked about why some people are nostalgic for something that many have never experienced, Rickert likened drive-ins as a metaphor for the transition from analog to digital. Even if they are kept operational, drive-ins are mostly seen as relics of a previous era.

 

April Is a Great Month to Visit Avalon, California

California has many great places to visit. Unfortunately, the summer is when all of the airlines jack up their prices to cash in on the travel demand created by the warm weather. However, California is a very big state. Avoiding the most popular tourist areas can save you a lot of cash when you are booking your flight. There are plenty of beautiful locations in California that will not cost you an arm and a leg to visit. One of those is the city of Avalon. You have probably never heard of it before. You should not let that deter you from exploring its amazing scenic beauty.

 

The city of Avalon is located on a small island that is off the coast of Southern California. It is south of Long Beach. There are some amazing deals that you can get on traveling to Avalon. However, you need to do your traveling during the month of April. Booking your flight during the third week of the month is the best way to go. This is because you will be able to save as much as 50 percent on your plane tickets. Obviously, this type of discount to a location as beautiful as Avalon does not come around every day. Therefore, people who are looking to get away for some fun in the sun should take advantage of this offer.

 

Plane tickets are not the only things you will be able to save money on if you decide to travel to Avalon in the month of April. There are also plenty of great deals on hotels that you will find. The rates on airfare and lodging will bounce back up to their normal rates in May. Therefore, you must not delay if you want to take advantage of the low prices.

 

You will not get bored during your visit to Avalon. There are a variety of cruises that are available for people who want to explore the marine life that lives in the waters surrounding the island. There are also many restaurants that offer every type of cuisine you can imagine from around the world.

 

Traveling To The West Coast May Be A Wet And Politically Charged Adventure

A late-season Pacific storm has Northern California in its crosshairs. Rain and damaging winds in Northern California seem to be the norm in April even though March was relatively dry. After four years of no rain, California is wet again, and the spectacular wildflower displays in central and southern California are proof that the drought is over. But California always has some sort of challenge to face, or goal to accomplish, whether it is the weather, environmental safety, water conservation or keeping Trump and his policies out of the state. California is a notoriously blue state. The Trump victory was an agonizing defeat for Californians. But they are not giving up the fight to one-up Trump on everything social and political. The California legislature just passed the largest gas tax increase ever. The gas tax increase is projected to raise more than $52 billion over the next ten years.

 

 

Instead of just talking about the crumbling infrastructure, California is doing something about the deteriorating bridges, roads and public transit systems. Falling oil prices, increase fuel efficiency and the popularity of electric and hybrid vehicles in the state has impacted tax revenue. The estimated shortfall in bridge and road repair money is $135 billion, and the 12-cent per gallon gas tax increase will plug the money drain a little. The state is also putting new taxes on diesel fuel, increasing registration fees, and adding a $100 annual fee on electric cars. California is the 18th state to increase gas taxes over the last four years. The Trump administration is talking about funding infrastructure initiatives, but Governor Jerry Brown is actually doing something about the issue. California will still need federal funds to address all the infrastructure challenges in the state, but the gas increase is a very important first step.

 

 

People traveling to California, and to other West Coast states, should pay attention to the weather patterns that seem to be wetter rather than dry this spring. Visitors should also be aware that the price of gas will make the trip to the West Coast more expensive. But in spite of the weather and politics, there is nothing like a trip to California in spring and early summer.

Norwegian Airlines Sees Growth in Flights to West Coast

One of the most popular airlines today with consumers is Norwegian Airlines. The airline is well known with consumers for offering comfortable service, in a relatively new airplane cabin, from secondary airports in the United States to destinations all over the world. They offer some year round flight options, but are also known to offer a range of chartered flights to certain destinations are certain times of the year to match demand.

 

While Norwegian Airlines has already offered a range of different flight options, it appears that they are now set to offer a new flight option to customers located in California (http://www.anna.aero/2017/04/03/norwegian-now-links-copenhagen-oakland/). The airline just announced that later this year it will be offering a new long-haul service from Oakland, California directly into Copenhagen. The new flight option will be available all year long, but will only have two direct flights each way per week. Flights will take place on Tuesdays and Saturdays eve week.

 

This will be only the latest flight option to and from Copenhagen offered by the airline. The airline currently has nine additional long-haul options offering directly flights to and from the United States and other key cities across the world. The other long-haul options include Boston, Fort Lauderdale, Las Vegas, New York, Los Angeles, Bangkok, and San Juan.

 

Those that are looking to travel to and from Europe from the Bay Area now have a lot of different options. While San Francisco has offered direct flights for years, Oakland has seen a big resurgence due to the airline. Those that want to fly out of the airport to Europe can now get direct flights into a number of different cities including Copenhagen, London, Oslo, and Stockholm. Due to the increased demand for flights into and out of the area, Norwegian Airlines is actively considering other airline and route options as well. At this point, Norwegian Airlines does not face any direct competition for these strategic flights, but there is a good chance that some of the other major airlines around the world will look for ways to compete with the growing and popular airline.

 

Alaska Airline Announces 13 Non-Stop Routes from West Coast the USA

Alaska Air, a Seattle- based airline, made one of its greatest announcements in early March 2017. The airline unveiled 13 non-stop routes from the West Coast USA that will begin their services on August 28, 2017. This follows the purchase of the Virgin America, a San Francisco-based airline in December 2016. The acquisition of the airline has seen Alaska become one of the dominant carriers in the whole of West Coast and the California area. The Alaska airline has in the past operated in Seattle and Portland other connections in the airport in Los Angele, California, San Jose, and San Diego.

 

 

Alaska Airline Expansion routes

 

 

Ten of the nonstop flights from Bay area will run from San Francisco International while three will operate from the Mineta San Jose International Airport for both leisure and business travels. The airline will offer 125 flights covering 42 destinations every day. Their destinations include Hawaii, Austin, Baltimore, Kona, and New Orleans. The company’s executives expressed their commitment towards creating an exceptional travel experience for their guests with a broad range of facilities that they have now acquired. The airline company will use the Virgin America all Airbus fleet and the Horizon Air’s Embraer E175 aircraft for the travel. Horizon Air already has 33 E175LRs that they acquired in February 2017, and they are still waiting for 30 more this April.

 

 

Alaska has experienced huge growth in the last five years adding to 13 nonstop routes and departing seats to the six that they had earlier announced. The six new Bay Area routes feature Orlando, Orange County, Newark, Minneapolis, Burbank, and Mexico City.

 

 

The Future of Alaska and Virgin Merger

 

 

The company’s CEO, Brad Tilden says that the two will continue to run under their brands as they make considerations on whether to merge the two into one single brand. The company terms this as one of the largest market announcement that it has had in its history. However, the executives did not give detailed information about the future look of the Virgin Airlines, although they promised to make more expansions to the combined route network.

Oregon’s Pristine Natural Beauty Attracts International Visitors

Travel Oregon, the professional organization in charge of promoting tourism across the Beaver State, is enjoying the success of its ongoing marketing campaign. One of the keys to this newfound success is to highlight the abundant natural beauty that can be found around Oregon, and one of the main attractions happens to be the only national park in the state.

 

Crater Lake is the only nature preserve in Oregon that is under federal management as all others are managed at the state level. Over the last two years, Crater Lake has enjoyed a significant increase in terms of visitors, including 64,000 Chinese tourists who visited in 2014. In 2016, nearly 756,000 people visited the park, which offer 184,000 acres to explore.

 

One of the marketing strategies formulated by Travel Oregon consists of partnering with overseas natural attractions visited by tourists with greater disposable incomes. For example, Crater Lake is now a sister park of the Wuyishan National Scenic Area in China as well as of Triglav National Park in Slovenia. The idea is to inform visitors of those parks that Crater Lake has characteristics that will appeal to them.

 

Local tourism promotion agencies in southern Oregon are also applying marketing strategies for the purpose of attracting more visitors. This region has a nice range of activities to offer, from rafting to hiking and from fishing to winery tours. Increased tourism could bring millions of dollars in economic activities to counties such as Coos, Douglas, Josephine, and Klamath.

 

Although Travel Oregon is mostly engaged in promoting the state tourism industry to visitors from overseas, Travel Southern Oregon is currently focusing on presenting the region as a weekend option for visitors from Portland, a city that counts many residents with higher disposable incomes. Other places where this local agency plans to include in its marketing strategy include the Willamette Valley as well as San Francisco and Sacramento in California.

 

One of the marketing strategies that local tourism promotion agencies in Oregon are applying is to target Silicon Valley and other West Coast regions where there is a higher concentration of IT professionals whose salaries allow them to engage in tourism more frequently.