Supercut of Instagram travel photo clichés

Filmmaker Oliver KMIA was traveling in Rome where he noticed the throngs of tourists surrounding the Trevi Fountain all trying to get the same photo of themselves with the monument. "I couldn't secure a picture of the Trevi Fountain for my Instragram account but I still had a very nice time in Italy," he writes. And when he got home, he was inspired to make this video, "Instravel - A Photogenic Mass Tourism Experience."

"I'm basically making fun of something I'm part of," he writes. "The irony is strong."

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Russia planning to build boutique hotel on the International Space Station

Russia's Roscosmos State Corporation for Space Activities is considering plans to add a space tourism module to the International Space Station. From Popular Mechanics:

The amenities will include a luxury orbital suite parked at the International Space Station (ISS) offering private cabins with big windows, personal hygiene facilities, exercise equipment and even Wi-Fi. In addition gazing at our tiny blue orb from a dizzying altitude of 250 miles, space tourists will have an opportunity for space walks accompanied by a professional cosmonaut.

The entire trip, lasting from one to two weeks will cost $40 million per person and going with the spacewalk option and an extended month-long stay will set the traveler back an additional $20 million....

To minimize the initial cost, (space station contractor) RKK Energia wants to book at least 12 passengers who would agree to make payments of around $4 million up front so that the company could begin the development of the orbital hotel module. It's a similar method that Virgin Galactic used at the beginning of its space tourism ambitions. The same clients will then pay two 12.6 million bills in the two years leading up to the flight, then paying the final $10.8 million payment at the time of the flight.

They better get to work though because the ISS is scheduled for retirement in 2028. Then again, maybe the whole thing can be converted into a boutique hotel.

"Russia's Plan To Build a Luxury Hotel on the ISS" (Popular Mechanics) Read the rest

A playable version of Oregon Trail to promote Oregon tourism

The semi-independent Oregon Tourism Commission has created a playable version of the classic Apple ][-era adventure game Oregon Trail to promote Oregon tourism. Read the rest

Norwegians fundraise to re-erect phallic rock formation

Concerned citizens are hoping to raise enough money to repair the phallic Trollpikken rock formation in southern Norway after suspected vandals apparently sliced off the head. Police are seeking tips on who chopped the tip. From The Guardian:

By Sunday more than 500 people had donated nearly 90,000 Norwegian kroner (£8,400) to fix the formation which is in Eigersund, south of Stavanger.

Kjetil Bentsen, an activist, told the public broadcaster NRK that he was convinced the Trollpikken would be rebuilt with donated money.

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Japan's "Weird Hotel," staffed by robots, in a Japanese theme-park

The Henn Na Hotel ("weird hotel") is staffed by robots: the Japanese-speaking check-in clerk is a vicious robot dinosaur, while the English-speaking one is humanoid; a robot arm stores and retrieves personal items from the guest lockers, and a chatbot serves as concierge. Read the rest

Cinematic Japanese tourism ad draws on martial arts traditions

Diamond Route Japan went all in on this gorgeous series of tourism ads. Their living samurai spirit ad taps into the romantic view of Japan depicted in their renowned epic period films. Read the rest

1922 house and furnishings made entirely from varnished paper

Having successfully invented the paperclip-bending machine, engineer Elis F. Stenman set out to build a new summer home for himself in Rockport, Mass in 1922, entirely from paper. Read the rest

Typical English village mystified by its cult status among Chinese tourists

Kidlington is a village of 13,723 people in Oxfordshire where nothing much happens. Read the rest

China's elites appear to be exfiltrating billions while on holidays

China has a massive "tourism deficit" -- the difference between the money that tourists spend in China and the money that Chinese people spend abroad: $206B from June 2015-June 2016, up from $77B in 2013. The missing money is hard to explain, since China doesn't export that many tourists. Read the rest

Hilarious and sophomoric collection of crass tourist photos (NSFW)

More here. (via Neatorama)

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King Arthur's grave was a hoax invented by cash-strapped 12th C monks

Since the 12th century -- and up to this very day -- tourists venture to Somerset's Glastonbury Abbey to see the grave of King Arthur and Queen Guinevere, allegedly buried in the churchyard by 12th century monks who discovered their skeletons in an underground tree-trunk. Read the rest

Body-painted models disappear into the Wonders of the World

Trina Merry (previously) has created "Lost in Wonder," a series of trompe l'oeil photos in which painted models are posed against many of the world's great wonders, vanishing into the background. Read the rest

Book and Bed: Tokyo's coffin hotel/bookstore

If you're in Ikebukuro and need a cozy, bookish bed for the night, try Book and Bed, a "designed hostel" that hides coffin-hotel-style bunks among bookshelves lined with handsome volumes and rolling ladders. The books aren't for sale, but you're welcome to read them in your bunk. Read the rest

See this magical tilt-shift, time-lapse, 4K view of Niagara Falls

"Nano Niagara Falls" by Joerg Daiber. (LittleBigWorld)

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Tiny lipstick sculptures of tourist attractions

UK artist Hedley Wiggan carved lipsticks into iconic tourist attractions for the International Lipstick Colours of the Year exhibit at Heathrow Airport's Terminal 5. Wiggan usually makes his micro-sculptures out of pencil lead, like the examples below of The Beatles and a witch.

"International Lipstick Colours of the Year" (Heathrow Airport via Weird Universe)

See more of Hedley Wiggan's artwork here.

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Malaysia blames quake on naked selfie tourists, some of whom now can't go home

The tourists' naked selfies angered the ancestral spirits of Borneo, said the official, and we are inclined to agree.

Faded, clown-themed motel that backs onto a plague pit

Tonopoah, NV's Clown Motel is a relic of the Gold Rush town's faded glory years, and it is filled with clowns. Hundreds of clowns stare from every corner, the walls are hung with clown-portraits, and there is a "historic miners' cemetery" out the motel's back door, wherein rest the mouldering corpses of the victims of a mysterious epidemic that is only known as "Tonopah plague." Redditors who've stayed at the Clown Motel have taken to this thread to one-up one-another with tales of the establishment's freaky weirdness. Norwegiancoconut dropped a link to this gallery of photos from a previous stay.

America's scariest motel is haunted... by hundreds of clowns Read the rest

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