The national capital of Laos, Vientiane showcases the best of the country’s French colonial architecture and Buddhist history. Picture ancient shines, temples and serene vibes amid tuk-tuk rides and local cuisine.
Among many reasons to visit, this city is a budget-traveler’s dream — even with the family.
Firstly, Vientiane is easily traversed on foot, by bike or tuk-tuk for a true tourist experience — for pennies on the dollar. With well-placed accommodations, your family can get to and from your hotel, local landmarks and fun nightlife for free, or incredibly cheap. Of course walking is free and offers a local perspective, but you can always rent a few bikes for your crew or take tuk-tuk rides, which average 57 cents for three miles.
Next, you’ll need to know where you’re going and, luckily for traveling families, Vientiane is full of free (or close to it) fun cultural highlights.
Head to Buddha Park, Xieng Khuan for essentially an open-air art museum filled with giant sculptures for about $2 a person. This is a great way to get the kids outside and sneak some art and culture in while snapping some great family photos.
The Pha That Luang is another must while in the city, and with an entrance fee of about 50 cents per person, visiting the Great Golden Stupa is a steal. The iconic, metallic gold structure is truly something to behold and a great landmark to meet up at if you’re spending some free time in the city and the older kids want to explore on their own.
Stroll down Lang Xang Avenue and snap a picture at Patuxai Victory Gate along the fountain for free, or visit the Haw Phra Kaew shrine and museum for about 50 cents. Other ancient sites, like Wat Si Muang and Wat Si Saket, all run about the same price, 50–57 cents, and are a must for history-seekers visiting the capital city. This city is a mecca for stunning architecture, religious history and affordable ways to explore them all.
Since you saved your pennies throughout the day, the Vientiane Night Market will be a great way to end the day with the family or really any age or interest. Selling artisan goods, clothes, electronics, handicrafts and authentic Lao dishes, this red-roofed mecca is a market worth splurging on.
Halloween is right around the corner, which means its time to start making plans for spooky and scary stops for having fun with the family this fall. New York’s Cayuga County is always a fun visit for family travelers, but if you plan on being in the area this October, you will definitely want to explore its haunted history with some choice spots along New York’s Haunted History Trail. This curated list of haunted and spooky stops throughout New York features incredible locations showcasing the perfect combination of the state’s beautiful charm and fascinating history.
As the only major U.S. airline to own a flight school, United Airlines already hit a major milestone, and now the carrier celebrates another important — and historic — step as the inaugural class of United Aviate Academy pilots graduates, leading the next generation of aviators. The 51 students in the graduating class were majority, at 80 percent, women and people of color — another stride toward United’s goal of training 5,000 new pilots by 2030 with half women or POC.
The next two seasons see Franklin, Tennessee, come alive with festive events, fun pop-ups and colorful lights. Family travelers planning a trip to Tennessee this fall or winter must make time for Franklin, a city just south of Nashville with plenty of history and festivities awaiting.
United Airlines is in the midst of a major initiative to modernize its fleet over the next several years. After first announcing the plan in 2021, planes fitted with United’s signature interior are finally beginning to appear across the airline’s narrowbody fleet of Boeing and Airbus planes. United flyers are sure to notice these enhancements from the moment they step on board: Each new or updated plane sports remodeled seats, seatback entertainment screens for everyone, Bluetooth connectivity and more, all adding up to a better experience on every journey.
Mysterious glowing seas? Yes, actually! Through October, Florida’s Space Coast waters within Mosquito Lagoon, Banana River and Indian River Lagoon glow with blue-green bioluminescence — a phenomenon resulting from the presence of comb jellies and dinoflagellates (tiny, single-celled marine plankton that exist in some freshwater locations).