SIA's A350 to Houston

Singapore Airlines’ first A350 flight from the UK departed from Manchester Airport on March 30.

SIA

The Airbus enhances Singapore Airlines' non-stop routes to Singapore and Houston from Manchester, which launched in October 2016. The service is the first commercial A350 flight from the airport.

The non-stop Singapore-Manchester flight operates five times weekly and continues on to Houston. It departs Singapore at 02.35 and arrives in Manchester at 09.00, then departs Manchester at 10.10 and arrives in Houston at 15.30.

The return flight leaves Houston at 20.15 and arrives in Manchester at 10.05. It departs Manchester at 11.35 and arrives in Singapore at 08.20 (all times local and subject to change).

Sheldon Hee, Singapore Airlines, General Manager of UK & Ireland said: “It is a great pleasure to announce the inaugural Singapore Airlines A350 flight from the UK.

"The A350 is the newest and most advanced aircraft in our fleet and we are delighted to operate this aircraft on our new non-stop routes from Manchester to Singapore and from Manchester to Houston."

He added: "These services are a commitment to keep investing in delivering an ever-better experience for our customers in the north....and with our recent codeshare partnership with FlyBe we will offer convenient access to Houston, Singapore and beyond for our customers.”

singaporeair.com

Norwegian adds U.S. cities

Norwegian’s transatlantic expansion will continue when the airline launches two new routes from Gatwick in September.

Norwegian

A service to Denver, which starts on September 16, will run year-round, operating twice-weekly (on Tuesdays and Saturdays) during the summer season but increasing to a three-times-weekly service in the winter, with an additional Thursday departure.

From September 17, the low-cost carrier will commence a year-round service to Seattle-Tacoma International Airport. Four weekly flights will operate on a Monday, Wednesday, Friday and Sunday. Fares for both routes start from £199.

Both routes will be serviced by a Boeing 787 Dreamliner aircraft, which has up to 344 seats in two cabins – Economy and Premium.

Norwegian, which also flies from Edinburgh, Birmingham and Manchester Airports, flies to Boston, Miami/Fort Lauderdale, Orlando, Los Angeles, New York (JFK) and Oakland.

The airline has one of the youngest aircraft fleets of any airline, with an average age of 3.6 years, including Boeing 787 Dreamliners and Boeing 737-800s.

norwegian.com/uk

Universal does the hat-trick

Universal Orlando’s third theme park, Volcano Bay, is set to open on May 25.

Universal

The brand-new water theme park will span 30 ‘immersive’ acres and feature a variety of experiences ranging from daring to serene.

Attractions will include a multi-directional wave pool with sandy beaches, a peaceful winding river, twisting multi-rider raft rides and speeding body slides that drop from the top of the volcano into the waters below.

When guests arrive to Volcano Bay, they’ll receive a TapuTapu ‘wearable’ to use for the day that promises to make their experience throughout the entire park hassle-free.

The TapuTapu, a state-of-the-art wrist band, will allow them to virtually wait in line for Volcano Bay’s many attractions as well as discovering various TapTu Play experiences throughout the park with just a simple tap.

UniversalOrlando.co.uk

Saddle up and ride

Texas celebrates its rich cowboy history this year with the 150th anniversary of the Chisholm Trail.

Texas

The famous route was used to relocate cattle from south Texas through Oklahoma all the way to Abilene, Kansas, and played a major part in establishing the state as part of the U.S.

Cowboys are believed to have transported more than five million cattle and one million horses via the trail between 1867 and 1885 – the greatest livestock migration in history.

Visitors can revisit the Trail and sample the life of a Texan cowboy by visiting towns and museums that dot its way.

A number of anniversary events take place this year, including the four-day Chisholm Trail Roundup in Lockhart, in June.

Notable stops for visitors include the Witte Museum and Buckhorn Saloon and Museum in San Antanio; Chisholm Trail Crossing Park at Round Rock; and Fort Worth Herd, a twice-daily cattle drive in the town.

In the spring of 2018, The Texas Longhorn Cattle Drive will take place, to honour the drovers who faced the challenge of the long drive. For 10 weeks, drovers will drive 150 head of Longhorn Cattle over 500 miles across Texas, Oklahoma and Kansas with arrival in Abilene, Kansas on Memorial Day Weekend 2018.

traveltexas.com

Muscle Shoals hits new high

The recently restored Muscle Shoals Sound Studio has been named Alabama Tourism Department's attraction of the year for 2017.

Alabama

Based in Sheffield, Alabama, in the far north of the state, the studio shot to fame in the 1960s and 1970s when it was a favourite base for acts including the Rolling Stones, Paul Simon and Bob Dylan.

After being closed for decades, the studio saw its fortunes transformed by the 2013 documentary Muscle Shoals, which detailed its pivotal place in musical history. Rapper and producer Dr Dre donated almost $1million to restore the studio to its former glory, complete with original period colours and furnishings.

Now operating as a non-profit organisation, Muscle Shoals is open for daytime tours and night-time recording sessions. Tours cost $12 per person.

alabama.travel

Twin Peaks secrets revealed

America As You Like It has launched a Twin Peaks itinerary as the cult show returns to Sky Atlantic this spring.

America as you like it

The five-night trip taking in Seattle and Washington State offers fans of the drama the chance to visit key Twin Peaks locations as well as a stay at Salish Lodge – otherwise known as The Great Northern Hotel in the show.

Ranked as one of TV's greatest dramas, Twin Peaks follows a murder investigation in a fictional Washington town.

Prices start at £1,169pp, including return flights with Virgin Atlantic/Delta from Heathrow to Seattle, car hire, three nights at the Hotel Seattle on a room-only basis and two nights at the Salish Lodge.

The operator has also launched a nine-night Washington State Cascade Highway tour featuring a Seattle stay and a seven-night self-drive itinerary that takes in the Bavarian style town of Leavenworth, Wenatchee National Forest, hiking in the North Cascades National Park and climbing Liberty Bell Mountain.

americaasyoulikeit.com