10 Brilliant New Attractions Opening in 2012 ...

New attractions for 2012 are a nice mixed bunch. If ever you need an excuse to visit these new buildings, tours, exhibits and attractions, they are calling from all corners of the globe. Some of the new attractions 2012 has to offer are already open at the time of writing, others come later in the year. Whether your interest is scaling tall buildings, seeing wildlife in a natural habitat or commemorating momentous events, there’s something new on the horizon. Here’s the pick of the Brilliant New Attractions Opening in 2012:

1. The Elbphilharmonie, Germany

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This is going to be one of the most striking new attractions of 2012 when it finally opens. Still under construction with no confirmed opening date, The Elbphilharmonie is destined to be Hamburg’s premier music venue. Some old port warehouses have been converted and will be topped by an amazing iceberg like construction; the brainchild of Swiss architects Herzog and de Meuron. Apparently, it is going to offer 360 degree views which will make it rival the other great concert venues around the globe.

2. Skypoint Climb, Australia

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When we think of sky scraping cityscapes, Australia doesn’t come readily to mind as having notably tall buildings. That changed when the Skypoint Climb opened as one of the new places to visit in 2012. Located in Surfers Paradise on the Gold Coast, Q1 is the country’s tallest residential building. To take advantage of the incredible views, you have to climb into a grey jumpsuit (mm, nice!) and clamber over the top of the building. Prepare yourself for 298 stairs and don’t worry, there is a safety rail and harness.

3. Harry Potter at Warner Brothers Studios, UK

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If you haven’t had enough of Harry Potter yet, this is for you. The Warner Brothers Studio Tour - The Making of Harry Potter opened in April and is already promising to be one of the most visited of the new attractions 2012 will see. This is the chance to get up real close and personal with the original film sets of the wizarding world and learn how the movies were actually made, including a tour of the Creature Effects Workshop.

4. The River Safari, Singapore

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It seems that no expense has been spared in creating this amazing reconstruction of eleven of the world’s major rivers. When it opens later in 2012, visitors to The River Safari will be able to take boat trips on facsimiles of the Nile, Amazon, Yangste and Congo, among others. The big attraction isn’t just the waterways though. To recreate the environment of the genuine rivers, the park has been populated by indigenous wildlife of each area. See stingrays, Malayan tigers, manatees, hippo and best of all, giant pandas.

5. Sea City Museum, UK

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With this year being the 100th anniversary of the sinking of The Titanic, it’s no surprise that some of the new attractions in 2012 relate to the event. Although built in Belfast, it was from Southampton that the ship set out on its maiden and only passenger voyage and at the Sea City Museum, a giant replica has been built complete with interactive displays.

6. The Barnes Collection, USA

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Opening in May in Philadelphia, the Barnes Collection allows the public access to one of the world’s greatest private art collections. Put together by Albert Barnes and with an estimated value of $25 billion, visitors will be able to feast their eyes on treasures by Van Gogh, Renoir, Picasso, Cezanne and Matisse amongst many other luminaries of the art world.

7. Titanic Belfast, UK

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Another of the Titanic-themed new attractions for 2012, this exhibition is nine galleries of multimedia and interactive exhibitions taking us through the short history of the ill-fated ship from conception to demise. The building itself is impressive as it is designed to look like four ships hulls.

8. 9/11 Museum, USA

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With a mass of exhibits, recovered artefacts, real-life stories and reconstructive displays of the most infamous terrorist incident ever, the 9/11 Museum vies with Titanic Belfast to be the most poignant of the new places to visit in 2012. Undoubtedly, this is going to be a very special place for anyone remotely connected with the incident.

9. Thames Cable Car, UK

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London has never stood still on the tourist front and thanks to the Olympics there’s a mass of new attractions for 2012. Joining the capital’s iconic transport map which includes the tube, the double-decker buses and black cabs, is the Thames Cable Car. When open (in time for the Games) it will take passengers from Greenwich Peninsula Station, over the Thames to Royal Victoria Docks.

10. Rome for the Disabled, Italy

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Ok, so this doesn’t include any new places to visit but this new initiative is so important for disabled travelers that it deserves a mention. Since February 2012, all the significant archaeological sites and attractions of Rome have been made accessible to the disabled with the introduction of a special wheelchair trekking service. No matter where it is located or how inaccessible an attraction might appear, the specially designed wheelchair makes light work of it. Find more details at romeanditaly.com

It seems like there’s been an awful lot of money invested in bringing us these new attractions in 2012. Let’s hope they are as good as the hype. Got plans to visit any?

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