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11 Attractions Debuting in 2017 Worth Traveling For
Unexpected arts landmarks, sprawling amusement parks and more are upping the wow factor.
Discover the top new tourist attractions on the horizon.
Lego Ninjago World
Plenty of new attractions are opening in Orlando this year. Most notably, Legoland Florida Resort's Lego Ninjago World opened in early 2017, featuring an interactive dark ride where guests can blast fire, lightning and ice with their hands. Other standouts include a rock climbing wall and meet-and-greets with beloved characters Kai and Nya. Plus, Legoland Beach Retreat will open in April. And Pandora – The World of Avatar, the largest expansion in the history of Disney's Animal Kingdom, will feature floating mountains, bioluminescent rainforests and a banshee flying attraction, as well as new after-dark entertainment.
This summer, expect a myriad of new events and activities at Breckenridge Ski Resort. Epic Discovery will feature interactive exploration zones, hiking trails, a zip line, an elevated alpine roller coaster, a rock climbing wall and more. Plus, kids can learn about the area's history, flora and fauna. In the summer, you can ascend the wall at the top of the Colorado SuperChair (a chair lift), and enjoy fast-paced thrills on with an aerial adventure tour (think: a canopy tour but from tower to tower instead of tree to tree), or zip line along a 1,200-foot-long route.
Remai Modern Art Gallery of Saskatchewan
In 2017, plan to visit Remai Modern, a new museum featuring contemporary art on the banks of the South Saskatchewan River in Saskatoon, Canada. The museum will be home to the world's most comprehensive collection of Picasso linocuts, showcasing nearly 8,000 pieces from the former Mendel Art Gallery, including 13 paintings initially donated by Fred Mendel in the early 1960s. The space will also showcase works by contemporary indigenous artists as well as a series of rotating exhibitions. Plus, visitors can check out an active learning studio, along with a fireplace and open lounge areas, an art and design store, a restaurant and a 150-seat lecture theater.
On your next trip to the nation's capital, check out ArTecHouse. The 15,000-square-foot digital art space will showcase a variety of technology, theater, art and music-oriented exhibitions. Located between L'Enfant Plaza and the Smithsonian in Southwest DC, the multipurpose space will also feature cultural programming hosted by Art Soiree, a local art-driven nonprofit organization that curates and promotes work from contemporary artists. The space is scheduled to open in early 2017.
MOXI, The Wolf Museum of Exploration + Innovation
MOXI, The Wolf Museum of Exploration + Innovation, opened in February in Santa Barbara to feature three stories of interactive exhibits focused on science and technology. Exhibits include a giant strummable guitar, where kids can learn about how sounds get transmitted, and a recording studio that features clips from Fox films, where kids can create their own soundtracks. Also, in May, the La Entrada de Santa Barbara hotel and Santa Barbara's lower State Street waterfront area will receive a major transformation with the opening of a long-awaited resort, the Hotel Californian, as well as a sprawling complex featuring three restaurants, wine-tasting rooms, retail space and a public plaza.
Chocolate lovers take note: Seattle Chocolates opened its doors in January to the public for the first time in its 25-year history with the "Experience Chocolate" tour. This delicious and interactive tour gives you an inside look into the daily operations at this celebrated Northwest confectioner. During your tour (a $10 admission fee is required), you can stroll past chocolate-making contraptions and learn about how chocolate is produced and innovative flavors are created.
Museum of the American Revolution
Come April, Philadelphia's Museum of the American Revolution will be the first major national museum to tell the comprehensive story of the American Revolution. Thousands of history-filled artifacts will be on display at the sprawling complex. Plus, visitors can expect high-tech interactives, such as a 45-foot ship that visitors can board and a life-size replica of America's first Liberty Tree that visitors can walk beneath. You can also anticipate exploring George Washington's Headquarters Tent, where he lived throughout much of the Revolutionary War and made decisions that would change the course of history.
Ferrari Land Spain
In April, a new theme park – Ferrari Land – will debut at PortAventura World, located near Tarragona, Spain. The 20,000-square-foot site will feature a variety of attractions dedicated to iconic sports car, with rides such as the tallest vertical accelerator in Europe and even a Ferrari-inspired hotel. With speeds reaching from 0 to 112 miles per hour in five seconds, get ready for an exhilarating rush. The new theme park for car enthusiasts is conveniently located about 70 miles southwest of Barcelona.
In Cape Town, the Silo will open in the restored historic Grain Silo building in the city's Victoria & Alfred Waterfront. The building, which underwent a major renovation to create reimagined spaces designed by renowned architect Thomas Heatherwick, will now house the Silo Hotel's 28 luxurious rooms and suites, restaurants, bars, a spa and rooftop bar, lounge and pool. Best of all, the new space will sit atop the much-anticipated Zeitz Museum of Contemporary Art Africa, which is scheduled to open in September.
A Velodrome and Sports Complex
Keep the Motor City on your radar. One of the largest sports and entertainment developments in the country is currently in development. Located in the heart of Detroit, this 50-block, mixed-use development will unite Detroit's midtown and downtown and is centered around the new home of the Detroit Red Wings and Pistons. The arena, which is slated to open in the fall, is not the only Detroit opening in 2017. This year will bring continued reinvestment, including thriving businesses, over 40 new restaurant openings and the April debut of the M-1 Rail system, a 3.3-mile streetcar connecting several neighborhoods along Woodward Avenue.
Harriet Tubman Underground Railroad State Park and Visitor Center
The 17-acre Harriet Tubman Underground Railroad State Park and Visitor Center opens in March with a recreational open-air pavilion and a legacy garden. Located along the Harriet Tubman Underground Railroad Byway on Maryland's Eastern Shore, this location was intentionally chosen for the park because the view is preserved by the surrounding Blackwater National Wildlife Refuge. Only a few structures remain from Tubman's time in the Choptank River region. Make your way to the 10,000-square-foot Visitor Center to check out the exhibit hall, where you can learn about Tubman's role as a conductor on the Underground Railroad and her work as a freedom fighter, humanitarian, leader and liberator.
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