Wholesalers have been busy this week, and this wrap is bursting at the seams. Although we’re not saying any clothing has been ripped.
Whitsundays celebrates multiple wins
The Whitsundays is celebrating after being named Australia’s top destination in an Australia-wide poll. The Whitsundays again topped the voting in Experience Oz’s Australia’s Top 10 Destinations to Experience 2017 poll, squeezing out close neighbour Mackay for the top spot.
It is the fourth year running the Whitsundays has been voted number 1 in the poll, which received more than 7,000 unique votes. As well, Whitsunday Island, home to world famous Whitehaven Beach, came fourth in the Island Destination category, and Hamilton Island came fifth in the same category. As if this wasn’t enough, it was also announced last week that Whitehaven Beach had taken out the ‘top beach’ spot in the annual Australian Traveller People’s Choice Awards.
Save big with Mantra Hotels’ sale of the year – starts Monday
Mantra Hotels’ biggest sale of the year starts on Monday 13 November, offering a range of great-value accommodation deals at more than 120 Peppers, Mantra and BreakFree hotels and resorts across Australia, New Zealand, Bali and Hawaii.
The sale gives travellers the opportunity to save big on a wide variety beach escapes, city breaks and Hawaiian getaways with rates from just $109* per room per night on offer from 13 to 19 November.
Queensland: Port Douglas, Sunshine Coast, Gold Coast. New South Wales: Kingscliff, Sydney. ACT: Canberra. Victoria: Melbourne. Tasmania: Tamar Valley. South Australia: Adelaide. Western Australia: Perth. Northern Territory: Darwin. New Zealand: Christchurch. Bali: Seminyak. Hawaii: Honolulu.
Scenic Releases New 2018/2019 India Brochure
The brochure features seven itineraries ranging in length from 12 to 27 days, across both north and south India and Sri Lanka.Scenic has released its The Mystical Wonders of India and Sri Lanka brochure for 2018 and 2019, featuring four great offers to entice travellers to these mesmerising countries.
Book by 31 March 2018 and receive:
- Included return flights for tours over 19 days to India and combined tours to India and Sri Lanka, such as the 26 Day Southern India Odyssey – a saving of up to $2,920* per couple
- Partner fly free for bookings on India and Sri Lanka journeys of 12 to 16 days, such as the 16 Day Jewels of India or 14 Day Ultimate Sri Lanka – a saving of up to $1,460* per couple
- Fly business class from just $3,995* per person (includes taxes) for any journey, or combination of tours, of 19 days or longer to India and Sri Lanka
- An early booking discount of $200* per person, which can be combined with the above flight offers.
Industry Rates – Aga Reef Resort , SAMOA
Aga Reef Resort in Samoa has released industry rates with up to 60% off retail prices over the travel period 01 Nov 2017 – 31 March 2018. The rate of WST$220 per night ( approx. NZ$125 ) includes continental breakfast & free use of snorkelling gear & kayaks. The deal is based on a minimum 2 night stays and is for accredited agents and travel partner. Bookings & enquiries to Mike Geary on firstname.lastname@example.org.
‘Creating Pathways to Employment’ Pilot Program a Huge Success
An Employment Pathways Program aimed at keeping young people in the Whitsunday region has proved an enormous success.
The VAK8 Program was led by Tourism Whitsundays, along with the Department of Education and Response Learning NQ, and entailed matching high school students with local tourism businesses to carry out work experience and study for a Certificate II in Tourism.
At the graduation ceremony on October 31, at Mantra Club Croc, 19 students from Proserpine State High School, Whitsunday Christian College and St Catherine’s College graduated from the pilot program.
At the ceremony, Kim Hargraves, Director of Training with the Department of Education & Training, thanked Tourism Whitsundays CEO Craig Turner and Corporate Services Co-ordinator Jasmine Kratz for their hard work and dedication to seeing the program succeed.
The Africa Safari Co 20th Anniversary Event
The Africa Safari Co celebrated their 20th Anniversary in style with a function held at The Ivy last Friday evening. The CEO and owner Susie Potter started the company in 1997 from her home in Sydney’s southern suburbs. The wholly owned Australian travel wholesaler has out grown several offices over the years and now resides in beautiful new offices in Sutherland and employs over 20 staff.
Susie Potter attributes her success to her incredible passion for Africa and employs people with the same passion which is the contributing factor to her incredibly successful business. “I would personally like to thank all my staff past and present for their commitment to me and the company”. It was great to see all my clients, family, suppliers, retail agents and preferred airline partners join us for the momentous event.
Experience the Remembrance Day Commemoration Service at the Australian National Memorial
Remembrance Day 2018 will commemorate the 100th anniversary of the signing of the Armistice. Travellers will absorb the full reality and tragedy of the trench warfare and gain an insight into the life of the differs on Albatross Tours 10-day Remembrance Day on the Western Front tour.
Fully escorted by an experienced tour manager the tour includes transport in a first class touring coach, 9 nights’ accommodation in authentic style hotels with porterage, breakfast daily, 6 dinners, all sightseeing, excursions and entrances as per the itinerary plus more.
Discover the Magic of Sri Lanka on a Classic Royal Enfield Motorbike
The ancient temples, jungles, tea plantations and palm-fringed beaches of Sri Lanka can be explored on a classic Royal Enfield motorbike in February, 2018, with Extreme Bike Tours offering a US$500 flight credit for bookings made for the guided ride by December 15, 2017.
As part of the discount offer, Extreme Bike Tours is inviting spouses of motorbike tourers – typically men over 45 – to consider the tour as an unforgettable Christmas gift.
Offering luxury accommodation each night, the 13-day, round-trip ‘Hidden Sri Lanka’ tour will start in Galle in south-eastern Sri Lanka on February 3, 2018.
Belmond celebrates ‘The Art of Cinematography’ Month at the Movies
Belmond celebrates the timeless world of cinematic film this November with the release of two global blockbusters bringing to life nostalgic characters and legendary stories.
Bear Adventures – Families will be celebrating the release of the firm family favourite, PADDINGTON 2, featuring Belmond British Pullman; where the charming bear from Peru saves the day. Special Paddington Bear themed afternoon tea journeys take place aboard Belmond British Pullman departing from London Victoria on 2 December 2017, 18 February and 7 April 2018. For those with a taste for adventure – special packages offer families the chance to discover Paddington’s homeland, Peru with bear-friendly activities for all ages available at Cusco to Machu Picchu with Belmond.
Mystery and Glamour – With the recreation of one of the world’s most famous murder mysteries ‘Murder on the Orient Express’ featuring a star-studded line up of possible suspects; the glamourous images of a bygone era of luxury travel are set to inspire travellers to take a journey aboard a luxury train.
Tempo Holidays Discount Turkey
Until 20 Jan 2018, Tempo Holidays are offering a 25% discount on three of their most popular packages in Turkey, available for all 2018 departures.
With influences from the Greek, Persian, Roman, Byzantine and Ottoman Empires, Turkey is home to some of the most iconic landmarks and best preserved ancient monuments in Europe.
Travellers can save up to A$585//NZ$625 on the 15 day escorted coach tour Glories of Turkey. Venturing into one of Cappadocia’s largest underground cities, exploring the Old and New City of Istanbul and paying a visit to the magnificent Pamukkale hot springs are just a selection of the highlights of this tour.
Prices now start from A$1760//NZ$1880 and include 14 nights superior accommodation, breakfast daily, one lunch and ten dinners, licensed guide throughout, local sightseeing, and arrival and departure transfers.
Why Yukon is the coolest place to be this winter
There are few bucket-list experiences more enticing Aussie travellers than a winter wonderland. Canada’s Yukon Territory offers the quintessential winter postcard, complete with snow-draped forests, sled dogs and the shimmering, mystical aurora borealis.
Read on for three reasons why Yukon is the coolest place to be this winter.
- The only thing better than standing in a snow-drenched forest is snuggling up in wilderness lodge as snow-flakes gently fall from the sky. A true winter wilderness experience calls for an authentic wilderness lodge and Yukon has them in spades.
- There is no better place on earth to witness the aurora borealis.
- When it comes to outdoor winter adventure, Yukon takes the cake. A true Yukoner embraces the winter months with gusto. This is your chance to live like a local.
Monaco on a mission to become Europe’s Heart of Innovation
Themed ‘License to Know’, this year’s TEDxMonteCarlo will take place on Saturday, 11th of November 2017, at Monaco’s iconic Grimaldi Forum that is expecting more than 600 attendees for the event. Over 16 speakers from around the world will share their passion and spark new ideas on a wide range of front-page topics such as entrepreneurship, safety, security and transparency.
From innovators to chess players, and entrepreneurs to doctors, the ideas explored will challenge the status quo and deliver new solutions to our changing times.
Brokenwood Wines break ground on new cellar door, restaurant & cafe
The next big Hunter Valley development is officially underway. Brokenwood Wines have broken ground on their highly anticipated Cellar Door complex, due to open in late 2018.
Along with the aim of boosting business, the new space will also bring more people to the Hunter region and increase local jobs.
Chief Winemaker and Managing Director, Iain Riggs said, “This marks a significant moment in Brokenwood’s history. Our current Cellar Door was built in the 70’s so this new venture means a lot to us, but most importantly it will allow for more fun and exciting wine experiences for our dedicated customers”.
Innovative architecture and design duo, Eduardo and Maria Villa from Sydney’s Villa & Villa were brought on board to create a “Home in the Hunter” for Brokenwood’s wine club members and the Hunter Valley’s growing tourism. Integrated Project Group will manage the construction.
Introducing our “scrummdiddlyumptious” Swiss chocolate cycle
UTracks, the active European holiday specialist has revealed its “golden ticket to imagination and adventure” launching a new self guided Swiss Chocolate Cycle for 2018.
Suitable for chocolate lovers of all ages, the seven-day Chocolate Cycle follows a loop from Zurich through classic Swiss landscapes, along dedicated bike paths and quiet country roads.
According to Kate Baker, UTracks General Manager, Willy Wonka himself could not have planned a better adventure for children, and the young at heart.
“Our itinerary immerses you in a world of pure imagination with visits to not one, but two chocolate factories as well as the opportunity to create your own chocolate bar and learn the secrets of Swiss chocolate production,” she said.
Tempo introduces unique Sicily farmhouse packages
Experience local life in Sicily with Tempo Holidays new for 2018 Sicilian Farmhouses packages.
Tempo’s new chauffeur driven tours utilise comfortable farm house accommodation, offering meals of local produce in quiet, charming landscapes where you can appreciate the local traditions and typical Sicilian cuisine whilst surrounded by Sicily’s most important treasures.
With two different packages, travellers can choose between Sicilian Farmhouse by chauffeur from Palermo to Catania from A$4800//NZ$5125 per person and Sicilian Farmhouse by chauffeur from Palermo to Palermo from A$4900//NZ$5235 per person.
Departing daily year round, highlights of these unique independent tours include a visit to the preserved Temple of Concord in Agrigento, uncovering the melting pot of cultures in Sicily and tastings of olive oil and other local produce in the farmhouse.
Kimberley and Arnhem Land Coastal Cruising, New for APT
The leaders in small ship expedition cruising, APT, have launched their 2019 Kimberley Coast Cruising, featuring Arnhem Land, pre-release brochure, highlighting the new destination and a range of Kimberley tours.
The Arnhem Land coast, new for APT in 2019, is one of the top end’s most prized destinations. These peaceful islands and coast line are teeming with sublime beauty, ancient art, culture and heritage. Located in one of the most remote corners of Australia, the pristine landscapes of Arnhem Land and the Tiwi Islands remain virtually untouched by the outside world making them the perfect destination for your adventurous clients and the perfect extension for those visiting the Kimberley.
These naturally stunning areas of Australia boast epic natural sights, such as cascading waterfalls, diverse coast lines, fascinating reefs, gorges carved through solid cliff walls and there is no better way to access these isolated locations then in the comfort of APT’s small ships.
Topdeck Travel launches free flights to the USA
Topdeck are offering FREE return flights on selected 2018 USA trips. The deal includes free return flights to LA with American Airlines. Get in quick, this offer is only valid until the 30th November 2018.
For a limited time, customers can score FREE return flights to LA on 2018 USA trips of 16 days or more. Topdeck favourites such as the Presidents & Parks trip travelling from Los Angeles to New York City ventures through sparkling cities like Washington D.C., Chicago, Las Vegas and visits the beautiful national parks of Yellowstone and the Grand Canyon. Topdeck’s Road Trip USA itinerary ticks off the very best of the US including visiting Miami, Las Vegas and New Orleans.
For customers seeking a shorter stay, Topdeck are also offering return flights to LA for $499 for trips between 10 and 15 days in length. This incredible deal is valid on one of Topdeck’s flagship USA trips, the 13 day Stars & Stripes which visits the best of the west including Los Angeles, Las Vegas, Yosemite National Park, the Grand Canyon and San Francisco before heading east to spend three nights in New York City.
New Scenic Skyway opens doors in the Blue Mountains
The new Scenic Skyway today opened its doors in the Blue Mountains following a three million dollar upgrade to improve the visitor experience and consolidate Scenic World’s position as a world class tourism attraction.
Marking the next phase of the Scenic Skyway’s evolution ahead of the ride’s 60th anniversary in 2018, the upgraded cabin features an additional 30% capacity to provide a more spacious visitor experience and improve queuing times during peak periods.
The re-configured cabin also allows for streamlined loading and unloading, and free Wi-Fi has been installed in response to feedback from international guests.
Scenic World’s Managing Director Anthea Hammon said the Skyway upgrade followed a period of continued growth for Scenic World on the back of a series of recent investments.
“The appetite for authentic tourism experiences continues to grow, but we recognise the need to move forward with new ideas and infrastructure that appeals to visitors from across the globe and retains our leading position in a competitive market,” she said.
It’s not too late to book a luxury getaway for Xmas
Fiji’s Yasawa Island Resort & Spa will be welcoming guests this Xmas with a new culinary team, upgraded facilities and a fresh new look to their luxuriously spacious Fijian-style accommodation.
Making the announcement, Managing Director, James McCann, said “Our new husband and wife team, Executive Chef Brent Assam and Executive Pastry Chef Claire Stiles, have transformed our culinary offering with upgraded menus, new dining experiences, enhanced picnics and beach dinners. Brent and Claire are excited to share all of these new changes with our guests in the coming months”.
“Our rooms have new lounge furniture, lighting and decor. Around the resort, the pool area, has been re-tiled with new decking”, McCann said.
On The Go Tours discovers the mystery of Bhutan
Bhutan is regarded as one of the world’s most intriguing and captivating destinations. Set in the Himalayas, it’s a land of immense beauty with dramatic mountains and wide valleys enclosed with magic and mystery.
On The Go Tours’ Brisbane-based, Cherylyn Antao, was fortunate enough to visit Bhutan for the first time last month with 7 other industry staff from Mexico, Canada, USA, Singapore, Malaysia and Australia.
Since opening its doors to the western world in 1974, Bhutan remains untouched by modern civilisation with an ethos of preserving its ancient culture and natural environment. We only need to see how the country measures its progress through ‘Gross National Happiness’ to understand it is an incomparable destination to visit.
“Bhutan really is a whole different world,” says Antao. “The people are lovely and are so proud of their country despite not having all the latest technology.”