National Parks Take Center Stage In Consumer Media Summer Travel Features

by Richard D'Ambrosio

Joshua Tree National Park is featured in the LA Times Travel section. Photo: National Park Service

With Memorial Day Weekend signaling the unofficial start of the summer travel season, consumer publications are advising Americans on the hottest destinations, and some lesser known but equally interesting getaways.

Travel + Leisure Magazine highlights “America’s National Parks” on its front cover, and across a 15-page spread. But just in case the parks are too crowded for you, T+L also recommends “Undiscovered Greece,” Mongolia and Argentina.

In National Geographic Traveler’s June/July issue, Denali, Alaska, is featured as part of the publication’s yearlong National Parks celebration. But the featured destination this issue is Sonoma, graced with a 12-page photo and editorial report on the region’s wine, cheese, and pork.

Reykjavik is the subject of a short National Geographic article, while Bayonne (France), Manila, and Columbia receive attention for their chocolate, lesser known culinary specialties, and coffee, respectively.

Conde Nast Traveler launched its June/July issue online in late May, in conjunction with web-based music magazine Pitchfork, and Spotify, the music-streaming website. The National Parks are featured in the magazine, and on the Spotify web site, with Spotify offering up 32 songs to ride shotgun on this summer road trip.

Rio de Janeiro, host of this summer’s Olympics, is also covered in the issue.

Spotify users can click into the Condé Nast stories and read the full feature as music plays. Pitchfork was acquired by Condé Nast last fall and has created playlists that will accompany each of CNT’s features.

Joshua Tree National Park was the subject of an LA Times Sunday Travel feature this past weekend. Author Rick Loomis encourages readers to rediscover themselves by visiting the country’s desert parks. “The desert is a powerful, transformative place,” he writes.

Venice is hosting the 15th International Architecture Exhibit from May 28 to November 27, and Departures Magazine offers its recommendations about how best to enjoy it. Along with Whistler, BC, Departures’ May/June issue spotlights Brittany (the island off the coast of France), Anguilla, and 10 top glamor camping hotels.

Ruth Reichl unveils unexpected dining treats in Frankfurt, in the May/June issue of Afar Magazine, while Chris Colin ventures to Oaxaca, Mexico, to discover the many flavors of Mezcal.

With all of the attention on the nation’s parks, it took the nation’s President to divert at least one media outlet’s gaze. No doubt, the world is still buzzing about Vietnam following President Barack Obama’s recent interview with CNN’s Anthony Bourdain, for an episode of “Parts Unknown,” the very popular cable travelogue. The president met up with Bourdain at a small restaurant in Hanoi.

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