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You might think that airport passengers would be too busy to settle down and watch the latest Will Smith Hollywood blockbuster or Jennifer Aniston rom-com. However, asked to name the facility they would most desire in their dream airport, almost half (49%) of travellers polled would opt for an on-site cinema as their number one choice.

Sleeping pods finished in second place, with more than one in three of those quizzed desperate for a spot to rest their weary jet-lagged heads, according to a global survey of 10,000 flyers by Skyscanner. Despite the current popularity of Kindles and iPads, many travellers remain attached to the classic paperback novel, with 32% of travellers backing the idea of an airport library. A park proved the fourth most popular facility, with 31% of travellers pining for a bit of green space amid the airport’s glass and steel atria to help relax them as they wile away the hours waiting for connecting flights.

In fifth place in passengers’ dream airport plans is a vanity area including a salon and spa, enabling fliers to pamper themselves with beauty treatments before they step foot on a plane. Other suggestions for dream airport facilities include a gym, with 15% of fliers keen to tone up their holiday body before they take to the skies, and a karaoke area to let anxious fliers relieve their stress with a song.

Copyright © Press Association 2013

A two-day International Drum Festival is set to light up the National Theatre in Bangkok next month.

Artists and musicians from all over the world, as well many as Thailand itself, will descend on the city between 5-6 July, producing an exotic beat for visitors to dance to. The festival is designed to build global friendship and cultural harmony by showing the important role of the many different kinds of drums in enlivening global music. Numerous free performances and demonstrations will be held at the theatre, also demonstrating how drums have been used for festivals, weddings, processions, ceremonies and other national, religious, cultural and state events.

“This is part of our effort to promote Asian and ASEAN social and cultural integration by highlighting the spectacular role and uses of drums in many aspects of life,” commented Tourism Authority of Thailand Governor Suraphon Svetasreni. “It will also go a long way towards enhancing the role of Thailand as a centre of arts, music and culture. Visitors will be fascinated by how many different kinds of drums there are.” Tourists flying from South-East England airports to the country will see drums including the Tabla from India, Lunba Cajon from Peru, Batucada from Brazil, Taiko drums from Japan, Djambe drums from Africa, and many more.

Copyright Press Association 2013

Croatia has become an increasingly popular tourist hotspot over the last few years - a trend which looks set to continue emphatically this summer. The eastern European country was recently named the holiday destination to watch out for in the coming months, with currency sales up 55% in the first five months of 2013. Kuna sales jumped 61% year-on-year in May, meaning it is currently 6th on the Post Office’s best-seller list - its highest ever position. “Croatia really seems to be Europe’s in-vogue destination,” commented Andrew Brown of Post Office Travel Money. “It has been growing steadily in popularity over the past five years but the latest surge suggests the country is about to become even more popular.”

Value for money is one of the reasons why so many holidaymakers are choosing Croatia, particularly those flying from UK airports such as Heathrow and Stansted. Recent research into resort costs suggests that a holiday in the country offers travellers more bang for their buck compared to many other European destinations. The coastal city of Dubrovnik, which is known as the Pearl of the Adriatic, is one of the top places to visit in Croatia. Boasting beautiful buildings in the old part of town, it is recognised by Unesco as ‘a remarkably well-preserved example of a late-medieval walled city’.

Copyright Press Association 2013

Spanish attractions have dominated a list of Europe’s top landmarks.

At the top of the Travellers' Choice 2013 rankings is Cordoba’s Great Cathedral and Mosque. The attraction is a World Heritage Site littered with impressive Renaissance and Moorish architecture. The Alcazar of Seville, which is Europe’s oldest royal palace still in use also makes the top ten, as does Granada’s 9th Century fortified palace, the Alhambra. Completing Spanish representation in the top ten is the 13th-century Cathedral of Santiago de Compostela in Galicia. Gaudi’s stunning modern cathedral in Barcelona, the Sagrada Familia, was 12th.

Italy had three landmarks in the top ten, including St Peter's Basilica in the Vatican City, Rome. Angus Struthers, spokesman for TripAdvisor, which compiled the rankings, commented: “These awards honour the world's best attractions as decided by those who matter most: travellers themselves. Barbara Messing, chief marketing officer for TripAdvisor, said "To inspire travelers setting out on summer trips, TripAdvisor has named the top attractions across the globe based on the valuable feedback from millions worldwide.

"Honoring more than 1,200 winners, these remarkable sights offer enriching and entertaining experiences for travelers of all ages." Spain is one of the most accessible countries in Europe, with flights to all major destinations from a number of British airports, including Luton, Gatwick, Stanstead and Heathrow in London.

Copyright © Press Association 2013

Racing lovers jetting out to Italy from London and South East airports this summer can enjoy a horse race with a difference.

The gorgeous Piazza del Campo of Siena will host the traditional and historical Palio horse race (Palio di Siena) - one of Italy's most famous and popular events. Piazza del Campo is the main public space in this Tuscan city and is regarded as one of Europe's greatest medieval squares with its world-renowned architectural beauty. Travellers can reach Siena via airports such as Florence, Rome and Pisa, with the latter in particular offering reliable bus transfers to Siena.

The Palio di Siena - or Il Palio - is staged twice each year, on July 2 and August 16, and involves 10 bareback riders each. The July edition is called Palio of Provenzano, while the August race is dedicated to the Virgin Mary and called Palio dell'Assunta. The event takes its name “Palio” from the Italian word meaning “banner”. This banner, or Palio, is the prize given to the winner.

The Palio banner is also lovingly referred to by the Senese as the “Drappellone”, the big drape, or the “Cencio”, the rag. A magnificent pageant, the Corteo Storico, precedes the race, which attracts visitors and spectators worldwide. The race itself circles the Piazza del Campo and both the run-up and the day of the race are infused with passion and pride.

Copyright © Press Association 2013