Touching the sky: a rare solar eclipse and a new hotel in the clouds

Touching the sky: a rare solar eclipse and a new hotel in the clouds

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(CNN) This week, the moon and sun briefly aligned over a remote part of Western Australia.

This hybrid solar eclipse has brought people from all over the world to the small town of Exmouth, one of the few places that has had a vision of complete wholeness.

As one stargazer put it: “It’s the three planetary bodies most significant to our existence that go in perfect alignment, like three notes on a guitar.”

Such celestial happenings remind us of why we travel in the first place: to experience as much of the world’s wealth as possible.

New and remarkable

It wasn’t just the skyward event that was making travel news this week. In Vietnam, the country’s tallest hotel has opened, fittingly, inside the country’s tallest skyscraper. Vinpearl hotel rooms all feature floor-to-ceiling windows for stunning views of Ho Chi Minh City and the Saigon River.

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From above to below the ground: The longest purpose-built cycle tunnel in the world opened this week in Bergen, Norway. The three-kilometre (1.86 mi) tunnel’s name is Fyllingsdalstunnelen, and it was cut into the rock of the mountains surrounding the city.

No need to take our word for it for its magnificence, though.

“We Norwegians are usually modest people,” Camilla Einarsen Heggernes, a spokeswoman for the Bybanen Utbygging railway company, told CNN, “But in this case, we would say that the tunnel is 100 percent state-of-the-art.”

South America is also not excluded from the party.

Off the Galapagos Islands, scientists have discovered a “pristine” coral reef 400 meters (1,310 feet) deep in the sea. The coral is at least several thousand years old and over 50% of it is live coral, which is great news for the sustainability work in the area.

Honoring an aviation legend

The unique Lockheed Electra 10-E aircraft on display at the Amelia Earhart Hangar Museum.

Amelia Earhart was not only the first woman to fly solo across the Atlantic. She has also inspired generations of aviators and has earned a permanent place in American popular culture.

Now, there’s another place to honor her legacy: the Amelia Earhart Hangar Museum, which opened April 14 in her hometown of Atchison, Kansas.

The museum was a passionate project spearheaded by the late Ladd Seaburg, whose widow Karen continued the mission to completion after her death. The star attraction of him is what is said to be the world’s only remaining Lockheed Electra 10-E aircraft, a twin to the one Earhart famously flew.

While Earhart’s name is the most recognizable, other pioneering flying women have earned their own endorsements in recent years.

Black actress Bessie Coleman was awarded a Barbie doll, and granddaughter of Jerrie “The Flying Housewife” Mock is working on a book about her grandmother’s life story.

What happens when the fun ends?

That’s the question asked by these no longer operating theme parks around the world.

Six Flags New Orleans was a victim of Hurricane Katrina, but it could be given new life thanks to a development deal that pledges to transform the space into a family entertainment hub.

And the Berliner Spreepark, which went down in history together with East Germany, has become a popular place for “ruin tourism”. The area is still open to the public, with walking trails and boat rides past some of the more famous ruined attractions.

However, none have a more eerie legacy than Pripyat Amusement Park, which had the misfortune of being completed just before the nearby Chernobyl nuclear reactor melted down in 1986.

Hometown detectives crack the case

It sounds like the premise for a TV show: A group of Michigan residents decided they were going to try to locate several sunken ships in Lake Superior in 1914. But this isn’t fiction – this is real life.

And you know what? It worked. Twice.

Members of the Great Lakes Shipwreck Historical Society have now found two of the three ships sunk during the same storm.

They spotted one in 2021 and the second, the Selden E. Marvin, last year. Watch the video to see the exact moment they realized their detective work had paid off.

The best of the great

Bataizi village is located just inside the Motianling section of the Great Wall.

Now that China has reopened to tourism, the Great Wall is high on many travellers’ wish lists.

However, if you want to skip the busier photo spots, check out our picks for the prettiest sections of the wall, from the garrison fortress in Turtle City to the Gothic church in the small town of Bataizi.

Most Great Wall visitors walk along the summit as part of their experience. To make sure you’re in the best position to do just that, our friends at CNN Underscored, a guide to product reviews and recommendations owned by CNN, rounded up the best walking shoes for men and women, from sneakers to flats. Browse the entire list here.

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