Every Friday, we help you navigate the week’s most important and interesting travel news stories.

Breaking travel news on Twitter

Reports BBC News: "A judge in the Netherlands has upheld a new law to ban foreign tourists from entering cannabis cafes." Opposition groups say they will fight the decision by taking it to the European Court of Human Rights. As BBC Travel recently reported, " In Amsterdam, the lord mayor, the city council, and (unsurprisingly) the tourist board all oppose the effort." [BBC News]

In-flight entertainment
Photos and videos that went viral on the Web this week

Our most retweeted item of the week was a set of stunning photos of Paris from online magazine Pictory, invites serious amateur photographers to contribute images for their themed projects. [Pictory]

Our most favourite link was of a beautiful time-lapse video of the Northern Lights as witnessed in the past year in Scandinavia. Paging Ridley Scott: both this Norwegian cameraman and the composer of the soundtrack are perfectly qualified to tackle whatever your next project may be. [Vimeo]

Another popular item among readers was a set of lovely retro Art Deco travel posters collected by aviation writer Benet Wilson. It's fun to look back on how air travel used to be posh. [Pinterest]

Amazing things that should happen more often

Scientists recently made what they believe is the first ever wild sighting of an adult white killer whale, off the coast of Kamchatka in eastern Russia. Wired has a short video of the beautiful marine mammal, nicknamed Iceberg. [BBC News/Wired]

Yakshemash! Kazakhstan's foreign minister thanked Borat — the titular character of the controversial film once banned in the former Soviet republic — for a massive boost in tourism. Apparently, after the release of the film, the number of visas issued by Kazakhstan grew tenfold. [Agence France-Presse]

On Thursday, Britain announced the full line-up of events for its Cultural Olympiad, taking place this summer in the lead-up to the Olympic Games in London. More than ten million free tickets are slowly being released for events. Millions of paid events are also available, ranging from a live trivia session led by entertainer Stephen Fry to a live concert hosted by actor Jude Law. [London 2012 Festival]

In New Orleans, the internationally renowned Jazz Festival begins today, 27 April, running through 6 May. In addition to parades and street parties, expect to see the world's best jazz musicians perform on one set of stages, while pop and rock musicians like Bruce Springsteen play on others. [NOLA]

Talk about eco-friendly, a guesthouse in Thailand, Bamboo Nest de Chaing Rai, uses bamboo for nearly everything, from the structures of the bungalows to the furnishings inside. Better hope that pandas never visit. [CNN Go]

Hold on folks, we’re in for a rocky ride

In the US, there's been a five-fold jump in the number of birds striking planes in the past couple of decades, from about 1,800 a year to more than 9,600 a year. A rise in bird populations and an increase in flights has contributed to the problem. Just this week, two jetliners had to have emergency landings because of bird strikes. [CBS News]


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