Located 2,600 miles southwest of Hawaii, the National Park of American Samoa is the most remote unit of the National Park System and the U.S. National Park south of the Equator. The Park spreads across three islands, 9,500 acres of tropical rainforest, and 4,000 acres of ocean, including coral reefs. While remote, the islands of American Samoa, true to the meaning of the word Samoa (Islands of Sacred Earth), are welcoming and offer beautiful landscapes and centuries of culture and history.
Seasoned backpacker and adventurer Yang Lu earned the grand prize in the 2015 Share the Experience photo contest with this image of a sunburst captured at sunrise in Glen Canyon National Recreation Area, Utah. Yang has made the outdoors part of his daily life and finds deep connection to the land through his lens.
“My photography is not just for recreation, it is to inspire people to explore these areas." -- Yang Lu
Photo by Yang Lu (www.sharetheexperience.org).
The plantings of cherry trees originated in 1912 as a gift of friendship to the People of the United States from the People of Japan. In Japan, the flowering cherry tree, or "Sakura," is an exalted flowering plant. The beauty of the cherry blossom is a potent symbol equated with the evanescence of human life and epitomizes the transformation of Japanese culture throughout the ages.
Secretary Salazar to Host Town Hall at Independence Hall to Discuss Travel and Tourism
Will celebrate 40th Anniversary of UNESCO's World Heritage Convention which draws visitors from around the globe to Philadelphia's Independence Hall
Last edited 4/27/2016
WASHINGTON, D.C. — On Thursday, Mar. 15, Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar and National Park Service Director Jon Jarvis will host a town hall meeting at Independence National Historical Park to discuss how to boost travel and tourism as a means to strengthen local economies and create jobs in Philadelphia.
Secretary Salazar and Director Jarvis will join Congressman Chaka Fattah and Irina Bokova, the Director General of United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), who is visiting Independence Hall to mark the 40th anniversary of the World Heritage Convention. The World Heritage Convention, the international treaty that established the World Heritage List, seeks to recognize and protect unique places around the world for future generations, such as the Pyramids of Egypt, the Acropolis in Greece and the Grand Canyon.
As one of only eight U.N.-designated cultural World Heritage sites in the United States, Independence Hall draws more than 3.7 million visitors each year, generates $146 million in economic activity and supports more than 2,100 jobs.
In January, President Obama directed his administration to create a new national tourism strategy focused on creating jobs by becoming even more welcoming to guests from here at home and from all over the globe. As part of this initiative, Secretary Salazar and Secretary of Commerce John Bryson are working to develop recommendations for a National Travel and Tourism Strategy to promote domestic and international travel opportunities throughout the United States with a particular focus on strategies for increasing tourism by promoting visits to our national treasures, such as Independence Hall.
Ken Salazar, Secretary of the Interior
Irina Bokova, Director General, UNESCO
Chaka Fattah, U.S. Congressman
Rachel Jacobson, Acting Assistant Secretary of the Department of the Interior
Jon Jarvis, Director, National Park Service
Cynthia MacLeod, Superintendent, National Park Service
Travel & Tourism Town Hall / 40th Anniversary of UNESCO'S World Heritage Convention