Workers begin to assemble the Ecuador booth on Thursday for the weekend's… (Catharine Hamm / Los Angeles…)
The Los Angeles Times Travel Show opens this weekend at the L.A. Convention Center with a lineup of activities, speakers and events that bring the world closer to home. Here are some highlights of what to see:
Get inspired: Meet the big kahunas of the travel world during the two-day show: guidebook author and travel expert Arthur Frommer, host of "The Amazing Race" Phil Keoghan, European guidebook author and TV host Rick Steves, actor and travel writer Andrew McCarthy, and Mike Wolfe of "American Pickers." They'll share their expertise and stories and maybe answer a few questions too.
Get information: Learn about niche travel, like the best diving spots in Belize (Belize Tourism Board), the best places to golf in France (BlueGreen), the best ranches and farms to go to for a family stay (Farm Stay U.S.) and what to expect on a visit to one of the Biggest Loser Resorts.
Get eating: Food is a big motivator for traveling foodies, and panels of food experts will be sharing their thoughts on adventurous dining around the world. Also, the Culinary Stage will feature cooking demonstrations by chef Brian Malarkey; Amy Finley who wrote "How to Eat a Small Country"; and Debbie Lee, author of "Seoultown Kitchen."
Get going: India and Israel, Temecula and Thailand, Ecuador and Egypt and many U.S. and international cities will provide travel information and entertainment too. Some of the more remote countries this year include the island of Yap in Micronesia and the Republic of Azerbaijan.
Get ready: Representatives from the U.S. Passport Agency will be on hand with the how-to's of renewing or applying for a passport. Transportation Security Administration's Nico Melendez will appear in a Q&A with L.A. Times staff writer Chris Erskine to provide up-to-date tips on airport safety. And representatives from Los Angeles International Airport will reveal what's new and coming to the airport.
The Los Angeles Times Travel Show runs from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday and Sunday at the downtown L.A. Convention Center. Tickets cost $10 for adults each day; children 16 and younger are free with a paid adult admission. View the schedule and list of exhibitors here.
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