The year of travel; from Dulles to Canada

Where in the world?

Fodor’s has looked into its crystal ball and seen . . . the gotta-go destinations of 2012.

At the top of its GO list are up-and-comers Istria, Croatia; Cuba; Panama; Rwanda; South Korea; and Wales. If your wallet makes the final decision on your vacation plans, the travel guidebook gurus suggest such “value” spots as Charlevoix, Canada; Budapest; Portugal; and Matera, Italy. Finally, if you’re one of those types who carefully follow the trends, check out Cuzco, Peru; Oahu, Hawaii; Scrub Island, British Virgin Islands; Paris; Charleston, S.C.; and Milan. For all destinations:

Of course, some folks don’t care about the “in” crowd and their “in” destinations. They just want to be able to sleep at night without traveler’s guilt. For this category, we turn to Ethical Traveler.

The nonprofit group recently released its list of the most ethical destinations for 2012.

Whittled down from an initial cut of 30 finalists, the winners are Argentina, the Bahamas, Chile, Costa Rica, Dominica, Latvia, Mauritius, Palau, Serbia and Uruguay.

The organization considered such factors as environmental protection, social welfare and human rights. It culled info from public data and such institutions as the World Bank, UNICEF and Amnesty International.

Read the full report at


The sky highway between Washington and Canada is about to get busier as another bird prepares to take flight.

On April 16, Porter Airlines, the short-haul Canadian carrier, will start service between Washington Dulles and Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport. The airline will offer up to three departures a day from both sides of the northern border. Sample fare: $370 round trip, including taxes. Info:

For Chinese visitors

The Chinese New Year is nearing (Jan. 23), but Hilton Hotels and Resorts is celebrating the Eastern culture 365 days a year.

The company’s Hilton Huanying (meaning “welcome”) program caters to Chinese travelers with comforts from home. Among the special touches: a front desk team member fluent in Mandarin; Chinese teas and teakettle, two pairs of slippers and at least one TV channel with Chinese programming in the guest rooms; and traditional breakfast items, including two varieties of congee, dim sum and fried noodles or rice.

The program debuted last August with 50 properties and has expanded to 62 hotels in 15 countries, including the United States, Australia, Canada and Japan.

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