‘World’s largest wildlife crossing’ being built in Los Angeles

Animals on the move

Almost nothing stops Japan’s bullet trains – but this snake did when it went on a rampage through a passenger carriage (OK, it just slithered around a bit). The train, which had been set to depart from Tokyo for Osaka, was taken out of service, delaying more than 600 passengers.

Alyssa Kopp and her mother, Mary Gomes Kopp, rescue stray animals on the Mediterranean island of Crete. They have been left heartbroken after their beloved pet cat Rodri, which is partially sighted, went missing on an Aegean Airlines flight in Europe on March 8. More than a month later, they still don’t know where she is.

World’s best and busiest airports

The world’s busiest airports were revealed in an annual ranking released Monday, with Atlanta’s Hartsfield-Jackson International holding strong in the No. 1 slot, as it has for most of the past two decades.

The big shakeup was Dubai taking the No. 2 slot for the first time. But the airport barely had time to celebrate its achievement before record storms swept the UAE on Tuesday, resulting in flooded runways, congestion and disarray at the Middle Eastern hub.

Heavy rains also hit Qatar next door, but Doha’s Hamad international Airport got off more lightly – meaning it didn’t take the shine off its big win this week, being named the world’s best airport for 2024, according to a Skytrax poll of travelers around the globe.

Tourist hot spots feel the heat

Amsterdam has taken the drastic step of banning new hotels in a bid to hold back the rising tide of overtourism in the much-visited Netherlands capital. It’s been actively working to discourage party-seekers who flock to the city for sex and drugs.

Last week, locals in the Canary Islands, a Spanish archipelago that sits off the coast of Africa, called for a hunger strike to protest the excessive tourism they say is pricing them out. In the past decade, tourist numbers have shot up by nearly five million a year.

In Italy, Florence’s famed Ponte Vecchio bridge has seen plenty of heavy use by tourists over the years – including the time when a Californian guy drove a rental car over the pedestrianized structure last year. However, it’s now set to be restored to its former glory with a two-year makeover, the first such restoration the medieval crossing has gone through.

shocking video captured two visitors destroying ancient rock formations at Lake Mead, America’s first and largest national recreation area. The damage to the slabs, formed out of 140-million-year-old sand dunes, is irreversible.

And in Hawaii, the picturesque Haiku Stairs mountain trail is to be removed after bad tourist behavior. “Rampant illegal trespassing” by YouTubers, TikTokers and thrill-seekers led to the decision.

US National Park Week starts April 20, kicking off with a free entry day on Saturday to all NPS sites. If you’re visiting any of these national treasures in the coming days, please play nice.

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