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    Miami,

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    Save up to 50% on Hotels

    Miami (), officially the City of Miami, is a coastal metropolis located in Miami-Dade County in southeastern Florida, United States. With a population of 442,241 as of the 2020 census, it is the 44th-largest city in the United States and the core of the nation's eighth-largest metropolitan area. The city has the third-largest skyline in the U.S. with over 300 high-rises, 58 of which exceed 491 ft (150 m).Miami is a major center and leader in finance, commerce, culture, arts, and international trade. The metro area is by far the largest urban economy in Florida and the 12th largest in the United States, with a GDP of $344.9 billion as of 2017. In 2020, Miami was classified as a Beta + level global city by the GaWC. In 2019, Miami ranked seventh in the United States and 31st among global cities in business activity, human capital, information exchange, cultural experience, and political engagement. According to a 2018 UBS study of 77 world cities, the city was ranked as the third-richest in the world and the second-richest in the United States in purchasing power. Miami is nicknamed the "Capital of Latin America" and is one of the largest majority-minority cities in the United States with over 72.7% of the population being of Hispanic and Latino descent.Greater Downtown Miami has one of the largest concentrations of international banks in the United States, and is home to many large national and international companies. The Health District, home to Jackson Memorial Hospital and the Leonard M. Miller School of Medicine at the University of Miami among others, is a major center for hospitals, clinics, and the biotechnology and medical research industries. PortMiami is the busiest cruise port in the world in both passenger traffic and cruise lines, and refers to itself as the "Cruise Capital of the World". Miami is also a major tourism hub for international visitors, ranking second in the country after New York City.Miami continues to contend with a range of challenges affecting the metropolitan area, including significant and rising levels of traffic, continued rapid commercial development and urban sprawl as well as rising levels of crime. A significant risk to Miami as well as the state of Florida arises from environmental factors including hurricanes and other tropical storms, rising sea levels and the ongoing impact of climate change on the coastal areas of the city.
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    25 great winter travel deals for 2022

    With Covid-19 vaccinations on the rise and people continuing to wear masks, practice social distancing and show proof of vaccination as needed, folks are venturing out again as safely as possible. A recent study by TripIt showed flight bookings are up 320% compared to last year, while the numbers increased by 404% for car rentals, 271% for lodging and 182% for vacation rentals. Whether you’re seeking seasonal winter sports, a sunny beach escape or a city staycation closer to home, there are plenty of wintertime deals to be had. Here’s a look at some of our favorite travel packages around the U.S., Mexico and the Caribbean, all available this winter for under $265 a night. Massachusetts Fresh mountain air and lakeside views await at this member-favorite B&B The Black Swan Inn in the Berkshires (Lee, MA). Budget Travel Members get nightly rates from $105. New Hampshire New Hampshire Escape - $179. When we say The Inn at Thorn Hill in Jackson, NH is a member favorite, we're not kidding: 100% of members who stayed here loved their experience, citing the inn's outstanding service, great food and romantic setting. Now, you can nab a room for just $179 per night for dates into spring. New York Winter warriors who love cross-country and alpine skiing, snowshoeing, ice skating and tobogganing should head to High Peaks Resort in Lake Placid, about a 4.5-hour drive from New York City. The resort’s two-night Cross Country Ski and Snowshoe package, from $203 a night, offers breakfast, admission to the Cascade Ski Center and complimentary snowshoe rentals when you book and stay by March 31, 2022. Washington, DC in winter. Photo by tomwachs, iStock. Washington, D.C. Kimpton George Hotel’s packages include overnight accommodations at this chic Capitol Hill boutique, plus little extras like nightly valet parking or daily breakfast for two. Rates start at $263 a night. Nearby, Kimpton Hotel Monaco’s Park and Play package, available from $263 a night, throws in perks like complimentary overnight parking and a $25 daily dining credit to use at its onsite restaurant, Dirty Habit. North Carolina Skyline Lodge, a recently-renovated boutique property in Highlands, located about two hours from Asheville, is offering rates from $170 a night this winter. Escape the crowds at this mountaintop resort during the week and score a bottle of sparkling wine with the Wine Down Weekdays package, with rates from $207 a night. South Carolina Just 30 minutes from Charleston, Wild Dunes Resort, a Destination by Hyatt property in Isle of Palms, is a wonderful place to spend time with the family or your beloved on a romantic getaway by the beach. With rates from $161 all winter long, you’ll have access to a swanky spa, tennis courts and two Tom Fazio-designed golf courses, as well as a variety of menu options from nine onsite restaurants and bars. Georgia Georgia Wine Country: 2-Night Retreat incl. Vino - $299. Waking up to sunrise over the Blue Ridge Mountains. Days spent hiking and sampling local vino. Kicking back fireside on a crisp night. All things in store for those who can nab 2 nights (or longer) at this charming North Georgia lodge with this deal for travel into spring. Miami Beach lifeguard station. Photo by JC Ruiz, iStock Florida Planning a Miami escape or staycation? Head to the Kimpton Hotel Palomar South Beach, where the Park + Play package, from $146 a night, lets you spend the night in luxe accommodations and receive complimentary valet parking. Texas In Dallas, the Kimpton Pittman Hotel’s family package gives guests late 4 p.m. check-out, a create-your-own s’mores kit and directions for an epic mural scavenger hunt through the Deep Ellum neighborhood. Rates start at $203 a night. Illinois Save 30% when you book four or more nights at the Royal Sonesta Chicago Downtown this winter and use promo code Save30. Rates start at $143 a night for four nights and you must book and stay by March 31, 2022. Colorado Now through March 2022, save on a luxurious stay at The Broadmoor in Colorado Springs, with rates from $259 a night as part of its Winter Spectacular package. Just 40 minutes from Denver, Hotel Boulderado’s Winter Wanderlust, lets you stay two nights and get one free, with rooms from $139 a night when you book three or more nights now through April 2022. If you’d rather stay in the heart of Downtown Denver, head to The Curtis, where several staycation deals are available. Park and stay packages start at $139 a night, while another deal gives you 15% off stays of at least three nights and 50% off parking, with rates from $109 a night. If your favorite fur baby is tagging along, the Shaggy & Scooby Doo Pet Package includes waived pet fees (saving you $25–$100 a night depending on pet type) and plenty of pet treats. California Save up to 15% on a stay at the Apple Farm Inn in San Luis Obispo when you book directly through the hotel’s website — nightly rates start at $101 all year long. Make the most of a winter getaway to sunny San Diego with a stay at this 4-star Westin, located less than a mile from The Gaslamp Quarter, Little Italy and the waterfront. Lock in discounted rates and a daily credit and stay any day of the week through March. Portland in Winter. Credit: 321photography, iStock Oregon While Portland’s Hotel Zags is offering several deals, our favorite is the Escape Your In-laws package, which gives you a bucket of beers and a $10 credit to use at the onsite restaurant. Rates start at $99 a night now through March 31, 2022. The Bidwell Marriott Portland is offering a special Night on the Town package, which includes complimentary valet parking, two free drinks at High Horse and two MAX light rail passes to use to check out the city during your stay. Use promo code XYO to score rooms from $199 a night when you book and stay by March 31, 2022. Plan a romantic weekend getaway with the Hyatt Regency Portland at the Oregon Convention Center’s Romance in the City of Roses package, available from $229 a night. You’ll get your choice of Willamette Valley Pinot Noir or locally sourced craft beer, as well as chocolates, Albina City nuts, romantic rose petals for your room and the chance to sleep in with 12 p.m. check-out. Washington Head outdoors this season and hit the hiking and biking trails at Suncadia Resort, located about 90 minutes from Seattle. Rates start at $225 a night in January for World of Hyatt loyalty program members (it’s free to sign up for an account). Mexico. Photo by Laura Brown, Budget Travel Mexico and the Caribbean If you’re planning to travel internationally, remember to stay on top of testing requirements for both vaccinated and unvaccinated travelers returning to the U.S. Perched on Medano Beach (one of the area’s few swimmable beaches) and just minutes from downtown Cabo San Lucas, the 5-star Villa del Arco Beach Resort & Spa earns rave reviews for its spacious suites, exceptional service and superior food. For a limited time book a 3-night stay for $555. Rate gets a Deluxe Studio with a king or two queen beds, kitchenette and balcony overlooking the lush gardens. From now until January 17, 2022, you can save up to 64% at Karisma Hotels & Resorts in Mexico and the Caribbean, including brands like Nickelodeon Hotels & Resorts, Azul Beach Resorts, Margaritaville Island Reserve Resorts and El Dorado Spa Resorts, among others. Rates for all-inclusive stays through January 4, 2023, start at $151 per person per night depending on your dates and desired resort. Save on a stay at the chic Spanish Court Hotel in Kingston, Jamaica, where rates start at $159 a night and include breakfast for two and welcome cocktails. For a real treat, book the Rejuvenation package, which, for $235 a night, throws in dinner for two at onsite restaurant Rojo, two complimentary rum punch cocktails at Cabana and a 50% discount on one treatment at the Zen Spa. In the Bahamas, Atlantis Paradise Island is celebrating winter with an epic January sale now through January 24, 2022. Bookings made for stays by February 28, 2023, reflect savings up to 30% at The Coral, 25% at The Royal and 20% at The Reef. During the sale, guests can also score an extra $20 per $100 of purchased Experience Credits, while guests booking rooms at The Cove will receive a $100 daily resort credit to use toward dining and other attractions. Discounted nightly rates at Atlantis Paradise Island begin at $172.

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    DESTINATION IN Florida

    Everglades

    The Everglades is a natural region of tropical wetlands in the southern portion of the U.S. state of Florida, comprising the southern half of a large drainage basin within the Neotropical realm. The ecosystem it forms is not presently found anywhere else on earth. The system begins near Orlando with the Kissimmee River, which discharges into the vast but shallow Lake Okeechobee. Water leaving the lake in the wet season forms a slow-moving river 60 miles (97 km) wide and over 100 miles (160 km) long, flowing southward across a limestone shelf to Florida Bay at the southern end of the state. The Everglades experience a wide range of weather patterns, from frequent flooding in the wet season to drought in the dry season. Throughout the 20th century, the Everglades suffered significant loss of habitat and environmental degradation. Human habitation in the southern portion of the Florida peninsula dates to 15,000 years ago. Before European colonization, the region was dominated by the native Calusa and Tequesta tribes. With Spanish colonization, both tribes declined gradually during the following two centuries. The Seminole, formed from mostly Creek people who had been warring to the North, assimilated other peoples and created a new culture after being forced from northern Florida into the Everglades during the Seminole Wars of the early 19th century. After adapting to the region, they were able to resist removal by the United States Army. Migrants to the region who wanted to develop plantations first proposed draining the Everglades in 1848, but no work of this type was attempted until 1882. Canals were constructed throughout the first half of the 20th century, and spurred the South Florida economy, prompting land development. In 1947, Congress formed the Central and Southern Florida Flood Control Project, which built 1,400 miles (2,300 km) of canals, levees, and water control devices. The Miami metropolitan area grew substantially at this time and Everglades water was diverted to cities. Portions of the Everglades were transformed into farmland, where the primary crop was sugarcane. Approximately 50 percent of the original Everglades has been developed as agricultural or urban areas.Following this period of rapid development and environmental degradation, the ecosystem began to receive notable attention from conservation groups in the 1970s. Internationally, UNESCO and the Ramsar Convention designated the Everglades a Wetland Area of Global Importance. The construction of a large airport 6 miles (10 km) north of Everglades National Park was blocked when an environmental study found that it would severely damage the South Florida ecosystem. With heightened awareness and appreciation of the region, restoration began in the 1980s with the removal of a canal that had straightened the Kissimmee River. However, development and sustainability concerns have remained pertinent in the region. The deterioration of the Everglades, including poor water quality in Lake Okeechobee, was linked to the diminishing quality of life in South Florida's urban areas. In 2000 the Comprehensive Everglades Restoration Plan was approved by Congress to combat these problems, which at that time was considered the most expensive and comprehensive environmental restoration attempt in history; however, implementation faced political complications.

    DESTINATION IN Florida

    Fort Lauderdale

    Fort Lauderdale () is a city in the U.S. state of Florida, 25 miles (40 km) north of Miami. It is the county seat and largest city of Broward County. As of 2019 census bureau estimates, the city has an estimated population of 182,437. Fort Lauderdale is a principal city of the Miami metropolitan area, which was home to an estimated 6,198,782 people in 2018.The city is a popular tourist destination, and Yachting Capital of the World, with an average year-round temperature of 75.5 °F (24.2 °C) and 3,000 hours of sunshine per year. Greater Fort Lauderdale, encompassing all of Broward County, hosted 13 million overnight visitors in 2018. There were over 560 hotels and nearly 36,000 hotel rooms. From that, the county collected nearly $87 million from its 5% hotel development tax it charges. Additionally, 3.89 million cruise passengers passed through its Port Everglades, making it the 3rd largest cruise port in the world. Greater Fort Lauderdale has over 4,000 restaurants, 63 golf courses, 12 shopping malls, 16 museums, 132 nightclubs, 278 parkland campsites, and 100 marinas housing 45,000 resident yachts.Fort Lauderdale is named after a series of forts built by the United States during the Second Seminole War. The forts took their name from Major William Lauderdale (1782–1838), younger brother of Lieutenant Colonel James Lauderdale. William Lauderdale was the commander of the detachment of soldiers who built the first fort. Development of the city did not begin until 50 years after the forts were abandoned at the end of the conflict. Three forts named "Fort Lauderdale" were constructed: the first was at the fork of the New River, the second was at Tarpon Bend on the New River between the present-day Colee Hammock and Rio Vista neighborhoods, and the third was near the site of the Bahia Mar Marina.