The amazing sounds of pounding bamboo pipe drums and pan pipes echoed over the Sydney waterfront yesterday as Solomon Airlines and the Solomon Islands Visitors Bureau set the seal on the biggest Solomon Islands tourism promotion ever staged in Australia.
For a one-minute taste of yesterday’s performance by the Hageulu Pan Pipers from the Solomons’ Isabel Province, click here: http://youtu.be/mtr6Bvk771A The bamboo drumming is incredible!
The new tourism push backs a soon-to-be-launched direct air service between Sydney and the Solomons capital of Honiara, highlighted by a stunning new inaugural airfare: AUD 599 return, including all taxes, in-flight meals and entertainment.
Solomon Airlines will begin its direct Sydney-Honiara service from 2 June 2015, operating from Honiara on Mondays and from Sydney on Tuesdays. The airline will use an Airbus A320 on the new route, with flights timed to offer seamless connections between several Australian cities and international connections.
These include Canberra, Melbourne and Perth and internationally, for passengers connecting to and from New Zealand, the US, Asia, Middle East, the UK and Europe.
The new flight schedule will operate as follows:
Monday – Flight IE 710 Honiara-Sydney
Departing Honiara 1515
Arriving Sydney 1830
Tuesday – Flight IE 711 Sydney-Honiara
Departing Sydney 0930
Arriving Honiara 1445
Solomon Islands Visitors Bureau chief executive Josefa Tuamoto told a luncheon function yesterday that the Solomons was about to “explode in terms of tourism”, with the government putting resources behind the industry.
The Hageulu Panpipers from Isabel Province delivered a stunning performance, kicking off a six-week campaign combining print, radio and online media.
The media campaign will target 4.5 million Sydneysiders and a further 700,000 people residing in and around Wollongong, the Blue Mountains to the west of Sydney and the Central Coast to the north.
The Hageulu Panpipers will also perform in front of the iconic Sydney Opera House and Sydney Harbour Bridge as well as at one of the biggest shopping malls in Sydney, Westfield Parramatta, which attracts some 800,000 shoppers weekly.
Many travellers are surprised to learn that it takes less than three hours to reach Honiara from Brisbane (and from Sydney commencing 2 June 2015) flying a sleek Solomon Airlines Airbus A320 complete with full onboard service.
As well as larger hotels in Honiara, the Solomons offers boutique resort accommodation, eco-lodges and home-stays dotted across the archipelago.
Solomon Airlines will celebrate 53 years of service in October. Known as the “best little airline in the Pacific”, Solomon Airlines was recently awarded its second IATA Operational Safety Audit Certification (IOSA), confirming its conformance to the highest international aviation safety standards.
The Solomons is famed for diving. SCUBA divers and surfers looking for the ultimate uncrowded wave make up the bulk of the 25,000 or so international travellers who visit every year.
Additionally, the destination is fast attracting a new breed of travellers from around the world – family groups, honeymooners, sports fishermen, yachties, culture-lovers and those simply looking to make their own tracks.
Written by Peter Needham