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She went skinny-dipping and then skipped her flight home. It was the best move she ever made

Bianca Gignac

In our travel round-up this week: love stories of missed flights and strong connections, the Greek island where the end of the world began, and dramatic new plans for the world’s biggest plane.

Love is in the air

Canadian Bianca Gignac was amazed to find herself skinny-dipping in Cinque Terre with an Italian shipyard worker she’d just met. On an impulse, she skipped her flight home to be with him. That was 2003 and their journey together’s not over yet.

In another sunny paradise, the handsome Hawaiian Airlines flight attendant who gave solo traveler Christian Friese directions at Honolulu Airport played on her mind during her trip. Then he picked up a shift on her return flight and life took a new route.

And Guillermo Barrantes was in his mid-40s and on vacation in Palm Springs when he had what was meant to be just a fling with a Texas-based flight attendant. But not only did they fall in love – Barrantes became a flight attendant too.

Destination inspiration

Thanda, a $33,000-a-night private island off the coast of Tanzania, comes with some unusual guests. Whale sharks - the largest fish in the sea - are frequent visitors, with more than 120 individuals identified.

The unique selling point at Patmos, a Greek island in the eastern Aegean Sea, is that it’s where the end of the world began. The Cave of the Apocalypse is the sacred grotto where St. John is said to have had visions that he interpreted as the Final Judgment.

Finally, if craggy vistas are your thing, you’ll find plenty of mountainous delights in India, which is a hiker’s dream destination. Here’s a rundown of 12 of the country’s most spectacular trails, from quick, casual hikes to multi-day excursions.

News from the skies

A Texas man was arrested on March 17 after allegedly boarding a Delta flight using a photo he’d taken of another passenger’s ticket while they weren’t looking. He tried to hide out in the lavatories on the full plane, but was caught by a flight attendant.

It was an eventful week for the airline. On Tuesday, a 63-year-old Delta pilot was sentenced to 10 months in prison for reporting for duty while drunk. He had two bottles of Jägermeister in his bag, one of which was open and just under half-full.

We move now from lawbreakers to record-breakers. Last week, Concorde, the world’s fastest commercial aircraft, made a rare outing – floating down New York’s Hudson River on its way back to the Intrepid Museum after a refurb job. And designs have been revealed for what could be the largest plane ever to fly: the WindRunner cargo craft that can hold 12 times as much as a 747.

Under lock and key

In the remains of South Korea’s largest mountain fortress, the country’s sole makgeolli master is keeping a dying art alive. Yoo Cheong-gil’s family has been making this traditional fermented rice wine for over 500 years and a special ingredient helps create the unique taste.

On the other side of the world, a 900-year-old fortress hides another boozy secret. London’s most exclusive pub is tucked away inside the Tower of London. The pub is run by the tower’s 35 serving Yeomen Warders, better known as “Beefeaters,” and only they and their guests can enter.

Security is an important consideration for everyone, even for those of us not guarding ancient recipes or the British Crown Jewels. That’s why our partners at CNN Underscored, a product reviews and recommendations guide owned by CNN, have reviewed the best portable door locks for extra peace of mind on your next trip.

Rebuilding Notre Dame

Before the devastating fire of 2019, Notre Dame cathedral in Paris attracted more visitors than even the Eiffel Tower. CNN’s Richard Quest goes behind the scenes of the restoration efforts, ahead of the landmark’s public reopening in December.

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The extraordinary science of everyday flying.

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