Friday, 18 January 2019

Sri Lanka travel deal from STA

12 days in Sri Lanka + return flights from $2,099

Travel from Negombo to Hikkaduwa on this culture-loving backpacker’s dream!

The stunning Sri Lanka has so much to offer – and it’s easy to see why more and more people are choosing to travel to this beautiful country. Diverse, stunning landscapes, immersive, cultural experiences and activities, and inviting, kind people are just some of the main attractions, but there’s so much to do across this 12-day tour. Beautiful ruins, hikes through tea plantations, tours of a spice garden and downtime at the beach are all on the menu!

There is honestly something in Sri Lanka (and the G Adventures Sri Lanka on a Shoestring tour) for everyone!

For the history buff; you’ll stop off at UNESCO World Heritage City Sigiriya, featuring the Dambulla Cave Temple and ancient Sigiriya Rock Fortress, Polonnaruwa Temple, Minneriya National Park or Anurhadhapura historical site.

For the cultural activity seeker; you’ll visit a spice garden en route to a G Adventures-supported homestay in Digana, as well as visiting a Tamarind Gardens Farm for lunch before heading on a guided village walk. You’ll also stop off at the home of a jewellery maker who hand grafts delicate Kandyan jewellery, and visit a cottage where local women make incense.

For the active traveller; trek Little Adam’s Peak or one of the many trails at Horton Plains National Park, catch a cricket match or hike to Ella Rock!

For the foodie; Learn how to make Sri Lankan bread or sweets by participating in traditional cooking classes throughout the tour…YUM!

With return flights included, STA Travel really has packaged this amazing escape up into the perfect little bundle – with not much else to worry about! So jump online now and check it out here:

Sri Lanka on a Shoestring

· 12 Days + return flights
· $2,099
· Book Before: 31 Jan19
· Travel From: Now - 31 May 19

Subject to availability. Terms and conditions apply.

To book your next adventure, visit an STA Travel store or call 134 782.

Monday, 7 January 2019

Truffle hunting in France

Plutarch believed they were mud cooked by lightning, Juvenal that they were the product of thunder and rain and Pliny that they were nature's greatest miracle.  Elizabeth David said they were the most delicious of foods anywhere and Brillat-Savarin that 'without truffles there can be no truly gastronomic meal.' The mystique around the truffle continues, in its nebulous way, to intrigue.

Active holiday specialists Outdoor Travel, based in Bright, Victoria offer a five day tour ideal for you to become acquainted with the mysterious and gastronomically fantastic fungus as perhaps you never have before.

Based in quality accommodation in the Quercy region near the Lot & Dordogne Valleys, the itinerary concentrates on three subjects: the hunting of truffles, the cooking and eating of truffles, and the buying of truffles.

This is an opportunity to make your own truffled foie gras and share a precious gastronomic moment with friends.

Pay a visit the world famous truffle market at Lalbenque after a seven course truffled brunch cooked by a top chef.

The weather in February can be glorious.  Cold and crisp with perfect blue skies just the perfect skies to go hunting truffles 'à la mouche'.  We do plan to do some easy walking but should we get inclement weather we are well-prepared with ample alternatives – castles, chateaux and wineries to visit!

Departs:                     Toulouse from 9th – 13th February, 16th – 20th February, 2019
Cost from:                 $2915 per person twin share              Single room supplement from $520
Tour includes:           4 nights' twin-share accommodation in comfortable, quality hotels or inns (all rooms with own bathroom), all meals, knowledgeable English-speaking guides, all local transport
Not included:             Drinks, personal expenses

For more information see:

Call toll-free: 1800 331 582


Wednesday, 2 January 2019

Lisbon to Cape Town with Latitude 33

adVenture bound on Latitude 33's Coast to the Cape & Big Cats journey.

For the discerning traveller seeking a journey full of unique experiences and adventures guaranteed to deliver lifelong memories, Latitude 33 has heeded your call!

The luxury travel specialist's sensational 34-night Coast to the Cape & Big Cats itinerary is a chance to tap into your inner explorer. Immerse yourself in the glorious architecture and culture of Lisbon, followed by a 24-night cruise to Cape Town on board the luxurious Seven Seas Voyager, concluding with an exceptional safari experience at South Africa's renowned Sabi Sabi Earth Lodge.

Your adventure begins in Lisbon on 11 November 2020 where you will spend 3 nights exploring one of Europe's most enchanting cities – and its second-oldest capital. Indulge your taste buds with a visit to the Belém quarter for some traditional pastries and dinner at a traditional Portuguese Fado restaurant; admire the city's many impressive palaces and historic sites including the Monument of Discoveries, the imposing Saint George Castle and the neoclassical Seteais Palace; and stand in awe of the jagged caves of Boca Do Inferno en route to the nearby coastal city of Cascais.

On 14 November begin the next phase of your journey as you embark on a 24-night cruise on board the supremely elegant Seven Seas Explorer, the world's first all-suite, all-balcony luxury liner, recently relaunched after a total refurbishment. Following the trade routes of Henry the Navigator from Lisbon down the West Coast of Africa to Cape Town, cruise highlights include: the Portuguese city of Portimão with its famed Castle of Alvor, framed by golden sands and impressive cliffs; the colourful buildings and 18th Century mansions of Spain's gorgeous Santa Cruz de La Palma; the stunning beaches of Tenerife, the largest of Spain's Canary Islands; and the isolated Cape Verde Islands located in the mid-Atlantic Ocean some 300 miles off the west coast of Africa.

Along the West African coastline with its unique blend of beauty, nature, culture and history, visit the bustling open-air markets and historical colonial architecture of Senegal's Dakar; the tiny Gambian capital of Banjul; Abidjan, the Ivory Coast's largest city; the tropical rainforests of Kakum National Park on Ghana's Gold Coast; and Lomé in Togo where you can witness a traditional voodoo ceremony. Further south, explore the tiny island nation of São Tomé with its lush rainforests, secluded waterfalls and pristine beaches; and unspoiled Walvis Bay, a natural lagoon and the only deep-sea harbor on the Namibian coast.

On 8 December disembark in Cape Town where you will stay 3 nights at the luxurious One&Only Cape Town – the perfect base from which to explore the city's bountiful charms including a cable car ride to the top of iconic Table Mountain with its panoramic views of the city or sampling some of South Africa's finest wines in the majestic Cape Winelands region.

Spend your last 4 nights at the award-winning Sabi Sabi Earth Lodge in the Sabi Sands Private Game Reserve. Offering some of the best 'big five' game viewing in South Africa, it's the perfect place to enjoy up-close unobstructed views of Africa's most iconic animals in their natural bush environment.

Departing 11 November 2020, Latitude 33's Coast to the Cape & Big Cats journey is limited to just 26 guests, with prices starting start from $33,599 per person twin share, including all accommodation, return international economy class airfares from Australia, return airport transfers in Australia, all meals and selected beverages on board Seven Seas Explorer and at Sabi Sabi Earth Lodge, and all transfers and baggage handling throughout the tour.

Even better, take advantage of the Early Booking Bonus. Book by 31 March 2019 and receive a complimentary upgrade from a Deluxe Veranda Suite to Concierge Suite on board Seven Seas Explorer plus a US$500 shipboard credit per Suite. For a limited time only.

Subject to availability. Terms and conditions apply.

View the tour video at:

For further information and bookings, visit: or telephone 1300 636 848.

Saturday, 22 December 2018

Family Travel Bumper Summer Issue Out Now

The Summer Issue of Family Travel magazine has arrived. Featuring the best of the best as voted by families around the country, this issue showcases the top destinations, attractions and service providers for travelling families.

Sections and features within this third issue of Family Travel include:

* Plan - focused on bite-size pieces of news and recommendations for getting families out exploring more, Plan covers budgeting advice, reviews of the best accessible playgrounds, plus teen travel tips

* Holidays - bringing the best international destinations into the limelight, Holidays delivers the 'Hot List' featuring the top 19 family experiences for 2019 plus an in-depth look at the increasingly popular Sri Lankan adventure

* Navigate - delivering top tips and recommendations for maximising family getaways, Navigate offers family-friendly hotel recommendations for top destinations such as luxurious Mauritius to idyllic Aussie favourite Depot Beach, plus expert advice on how to capture the best of your holiday memories

* Out & About With Kids - dedicated to the best of Australian travel, including events, holidays, camping trips, and city adventures, Out & About With Kids also covers off the best Aussie island escapes and top hiking tips for families this issue

* Anaheim - the #1 voted international destination for families to visit (per 2018 Family Travel People's Choice Awards) is featured in a sensational 28 page dedicated section. Covering top places to stay, eat and visit, this feature is a goldmine of information for families planning their visit to this favoured Orange County city

Readers are encouraged to share their thoughts on this bumper summer issue by submitting a letter to to go in the running to win a Sony AX33 4K Handycam (valued at $1099)

To read the summer issue of Family Travel magazine visit:

The Gold Museum of Girona

Girona: The Dor Museum – Jewellery Museum and Arts Centre has opened in the old castle in Sant Julià de Ramis, very close to the city of Girona, about 1h30 mins from Barcelona. It is devoted to the world of jewellery and the craftspeople making unique jewellery pieces as an expression of human emotion. The first floor displays exhibits related with 20th-century jewellery, while the second floor hosts temporary art exhibitions with works by Josep Maria Subirachs and Apelles Fenosa. The Quim Hereu Centre shows the artist's creative process.

This castle, La Fortalesa de Sant Julià de Ramis, includes facilities for meetings and events, a five-star hotel and a restaurant by the award-winning chef Jordi Cruz.


Wednesday, 19 December 2018

Best Seats on the Harbour this New Year’s Eve

Celebrate New Year's Eve 2018 with Captain Cook Cruises on the most beautiful harbour in the world. Be dazzled by Sydney's famous Harbour fireworks from the best seat in the house - on one of Captain Cook's many New Year's Eve Cruises.

Come aboard Captain Cook Cruises Sydney 2000, John Cadman 2 or Matilda 3 and be one of the privileged few cruising in the Harbour Lights Parade, inside the fireworks exclusion zone.

The Sydney 2000 is Sydney's most prestigious cruise ship and hosts the Club and Show Deck New Year's Eve dinners featuring an indulgent four-course a-la-carte menu, superior wines, all spirits and liqueurs and premium Veuve Clicquot Champagne to toast at midnight.

Promising the night is one to remember, both Club and Show Deck include deluxe seating, a fantastic live band and access to the open top deck with uninterrupted 360-degree firework and Sydney Harbour views.

The Sydney 2000 New Year's Eve Club Deck dinner is priced at $1399 per person and the Show Deck dinner at $1299 per person. Sydney 2000 cruises depart on 31st December 2018 from Circular Quay Wharf 6 at 7.30pm, disembarking at 1.00am.

The John Cadman 2 offers a sumptuous seafood buffet and an open bar of still and sparkling wine, local and imported beers and standard spirits. Dance the night away to a DJ while soaking up the million-dollar views and fireworks.

The John Cadman 2 cruise is $999 per person, with window seating available from $99 per person. It departs on Monday 31st December 2018 from Darling Harbour, King Street Wharf No.1 at 7.00pm, disembarking at 1.00am.

On Matilda 3 bring in the New Year with a party DJ and enjoy premium canapés, a standing buffet featuring a selection of meats, seafood, vegetarian options and desserts, an open bar of still and sparkling wine, local and imported beers and soft drinks and a glass of premium champagne at midnight, while watching the harbours firework display.

The Matilda 3 cruise is priced at $899 per person and departs on Monday 31st December 2018 from Darling Harbour Pier 26 at 7.30pm, disembarking at 1.15am.

For a more casual celebration, pack a picnic and spend New Year's Eve on a Fireworks Cruise aboard Nancy Wake or Maggie Cat.  This five-hour cruise has indoor and outdoor ferry seating and a fully licensed bar on board.

The Nancy Wake and Maggie Cat cruises are $550 per person and depart Darling Harbour, Pier 26, at 7.15pm, disembarking at 1.00am.

For further information visit:

Take a Princess Alaska and Rocky Mountains Tour

Visit stunning Alaska and the Canadian Rockies with Princess Cruises on this 13-night fly/tour/cruise package from Cruise1st.

After a flight on 5th September 2019 from Australia to Calgary, Canada, the adventure begins with a 7-day pre-cruise tour that starts with a trip to Head-Smashed-in Buffalo Jump, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The tour from there is a non-stop adventure packed with historical sites, national parks, glaciers and other breath-taking natural wonders through areas including Lake Louise and the Columbia Icefield, Sun Peaks and Whistler before arriving in Vancouver.


In Vancouver, you will embark on Island Princess for your 5-night cruise which captures some of the most breath-taking scenery imaginable as it makes stops at Juneau and Ketchikan, before arriving back into Vancouver ahead of your return flight to Australia.


Princess Cruises Island Princess is a compact ship perfect for visiting the icy landscapes of Alaska. There is a nightly program of live music, comedy and shows. Two swimming pools and six whirlpools are complemented by fitness centre and miniature golf course. A splendid selection of dining options is available including Princesses' traditional afternoon tea.


The package includes flights to and from Canada, the pre-cruise Rockies tour and the cruise from Vancouver.


The package is priced from $3,599* per person twin share from Sydney.


For more information call Cruise1st on 1300 596 345 or visit


*Terms & conditions apply. Subject to availability. Restrictions may apply. Prices are per person, twin share based on an inside stateroom. Prices and specified hotels subject to change at any time.

Nanuku's white-knuckle Fijian adventures!

If relaxing poolside, cocktail in hand is akin to boredom, Nanuku Auberge Resort has you covered. Not only does it offer said tranquillity, but also an abundance of adrenaline pumping activities for the adventure traveller too!

Located at Pacific Harbour, aka "The Adventure Capital of Fiji", Nanuku Auberge Resort has over 50 land or sea experiences to quench even the thirstiest adrenaline enthusiast. Some examples include:


Suitable for experienced surfers, resort guests are escorted via private boat to Frigates world-class reef break for a full-day guided by Nanuku's 'Matai' (Fiji for surf expert). Three to Five day professional surf courses can also be booked with the local Surf Camp.


A once-in-a-lifetime experience; viewing massive cage-less bull sharks up close in their natural habitat. With a team of dive masters to ensure safety, guests descend approximately 100 feet underwater to view as many as 100 sharks feeding so closely, they may even feel the wake from the shark's tails.


Resort guests can marvel at Fiji's spectacular islands surrounded by pristine blue waters as well as rare aerial views of beautiful fringing coral reefs from as high as 14,000 feet in the air. Guests aged from 7 years and above have enjoyed this safe experience with Nanuku's professionally-certified instructors and crew.


Discover some of Fiji's most formidable and phenomenally beautiful terrain along the Upper Navua River. Guests will raft underneath lush emerald rainforests, squeeze through soaring black volcanic walls barely five meters apart and take in not one but up to 70 waterfalls. At a remote village, guests can stop to learn the customs and traditions of true highlanders and take part in a kava ceremony with the village chief.

In addition, Nanuku Auberge Resort offers a myriad of adventures including open-ocean spear-fishing, Raka rugby training, jungle hiking, waterfall hiking, jungle hunting, off-road buggy explorations, heli-goft, jet-skiing, sand-dune boarding, moonlight prawning and so many more.


Friday, 14 December 2018

Captain Cook's ultimate Sydney to Hobart Yacht Race lunch experience

Experience the excitement of one of the world's greatest ocean races, the Sydney to Hobart Yacht Race on Wednesday 26th December 2018. See all the action as the fleet departs Sydney Harbour for Hobart, all while enjoying a delicious lunch on one of Captain Cook Cruises Boxing Day Lunch cruises.

Join prestigious dining vessel MV Sydney 2000, as she cruises from King St Wharf to Parsley Bay where she will anchor between 11.00am and 2.00pm. This picturesque bay is situated between the exclusive Eastern suburbs of Watsons Bay and Nielson Park, and offers amazing viewing of the sailing fleet on their way to 'the heads' of Sydney Harbour.

There are three fantastic Boxing Day lunch cruise options onboard MV Sydney 2000, all with live commentary, televisions on each deck and access to the open top deck offering uninterrupted 360-degree views of Sydney Harbour.

The Sky Deck Boxing Day Lunch is the ultimate Boxing Day experience, offering a four-course premium menu including an open bar of house spirits, superior wines, beers and soft drinks, all on the uppermost dining deck.

The Club Deck and Show Deck Boxing Day Lunch offer a special seafood buffet including, ocean prawns, mussels, smoked salmon, Barramundi, a variety of non-seafood and vegetarian fresh salads and dishes, bread rolls, a cheese board, seasonal fruit, a selection of cakes and tea and coffee.

The Club Deck lunch includes a superior bar of wines, beers and soft drinks and the Show Deck lunch includes a standard bar of house wines, beer and soft drinks.

Boxing Day Lunch cruises depart on Wednesday 26th December 2018 from Darling Harbour, King Street Wharf No.1 at 10.30am, returning at 2.15pm.

The Sky Deck Boxing Day lunch is priced at $229 per adult and $169 per child (4 to 15 years), the Club Deck Boxing Day lunch is priced at $169 per adult and $99 per child (4 to 15 years) and the Show Deck Boxing Day lunch is priced at $159 per adult and $99 per child (4 to 15 years).

Other Captain Cook Cruises Boxing Day cruises include the Boxing Day Race to Bondi and Boxing Day Race Picnic.

For further information and menus visit: or



Thursday, 29 November 2018

Out Now: New ‘Steam Australia’ book by Tim Fischer

New ‘Steam Australia’ book by Tim Fischer explores the history of locomotives with exclusive images never seen before

What do Agatha Christie, Arthur Conan Doyle, Rudyard Kipling and Mark Twain have in common? They all rode Australia’s steam train network in its heyday—and a new book explores its rich history. In Steam Australia: Locomotives that Galvanised the Nation (NLA Publishing, 1 November, $39.99, ISBN: 9780642279293), author and former deputy prime minister, Tim Fischer, provides a captivating insight into Australia’s locomotive history, illustrated with over 300 images from the National Library of Australia, many of which have never been seen in print before.

Much more than just a listed history, Fischer offers a compelling account of the great tapestry of transport weaved by the steam locomotive in this country. It details how the nation was galvanised by the economic growth steam trains delivered, and shares the stories behind famous named express trains such as Puffing Billy, Robert Gordon Menzies and The Ghan. It also includes a number of fascinating stories such as Albury’s ‘break of gauge’ platform, the Amiens branch line, the ‘garnishee’ order made against the Spirit of Progress, as well as those of important characters such as C.Y. O’Connor and John Whitton.

Deeply visual and well researched, Steam Australia provides a fascinating insight into locomotives and their important part in shaping Australian history.

Tim Fischer entered state parliament in 1971, switched to federal parliament in 1984, and became Nationals leader in 1990 and deputy prime minister in 1996. He was appointed ambassador to the Holy See in 2008, and is now a successful book author. Since travelling to boarding school by steam and diesel trains five decades ago, Tim has maintained a deep interest in transport issues, serving as the transport officer of 1RAR and on many parliamentary committees relating to rail and general transport issues. More recently, he was on the board of FreightLink and also leads rail tours in Australia, Europe, Russia and South Africa.

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