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Travellers’ Good Buys Compiled By John Rozentals

March 25, 2017 Travel Deals No Comments Email Email

Australian travellers can explore Italy’s spectacular Amalfi Coast by yacht this September, with archaeological tour specialist Peter Sommer Travels offering two new sailings.The eight-day ‘Cruising the Amalfi Coast’ tour, for instance, is escorted by an archaeologist and an art historian, and offers a unique perspective on one of the world’s most famous coastlines, with holidaymakers enjoying the comforts of a traditional Turkish gulet which has been stylishly refitted in Italy.

The tour visits some of the best-known destinations in the area, including the Isle of Capri, the ruins of Pompeii and breathtaking Amalfi, as well as lesser-known sites such as the ancient underwater city at Baia and the outstanding Roman frescoes of the Villa Oplontis.

The intimate cruise for up to 10 guests costs from about $6400 per person twin-share, including airport transfers, seven nights aboard the gulet, all entrance fees, expert guided excursions and wifi when coverage permits.


 First Landing Beach Resort … five nights from $555 per person twin-share.

Stay five nights in an ocean-view studio apartment at Fiji’s First Landing Beach Resort & Villas and pay from $555 per person twin-share, including return coach transfers, meet-and-greet with shell lei garland at Nadi Airport, continental breakfast daily and welcome fruit drink on arrival.

The deal is valid for sale and travel until July 31.

The property is set among exotic gardens on Nadi’s only white-sand beach.

Facilities include beachfront seafood restaurant, fresh-water swimming pool, health-and-beauty centre and tour desk.

Phone 1300 883 887 or visit

A country of stunning landscapes … Iceland’s famous Godafoss Falls.

The cult TV series Game of Thrones has helped elevate Iceland to being one of the world’s prime travel destinations.

Beyond Travel’s selection of Iceland tours includes ‘Complete Iceland’, currently discounted to $3870 per person twin-share and offering savings of $250 per couple.

This fully escorted nine-day round-trip journey from Reykjavik showcases some of the country’s most stunning landscapes, including waterfalls, geysers, boiling mud pools, lava fields, lagoons, geo-thermal caves and black-sand coastlines.

All Beyond Travel’s escorted tours have guaranteed departures and include quality accommodation with daily breakfast, many other meals, sightseeing and transportation by air-conditioned coach.

A 10-day self-drive tour is available from $3290 per person twin-share in June, including car hire, pre-arranged hotels and farm-stays, plus maps and destination details.

Phone 1300 363 554 or visit

 Khaju Bridge, Isfahan … a highlight of a celebrated city.

Beyond the traditional tourist route are the hidden treasures of an ancient land known as Persia, very much a magnet for adventure-loving travellers who love to dabble in history.

Australian-based small-group travel specialist Byroads Travel considers the destination — today known as Iran — as one of the region’s most significant.

The company is offering a 15-day ‘Persia Unveiled’ tour which is priced from about $5440 and takes in such major highlights as Tehran, Shiraz, Persepolis, Yazd, the hillside village of Abyaneh, and Kashan. Three days are also spent in the celebrated city of Isfahan.

Phone (02) 9357 6800 or visit

 Colourful Sri Lanks … a fishing boat on Negombo Beach.

Insider Journeys is offering 10 per cent off all of its Sri Lanka small-group journeys, with, for example, its nine-day ‘Taste of Sri Lanka’ priced from $2547 per person twin-share.

Known as the pearl of the Indian Ocean for its golden beaches, inclusive cultural sites and lush tea plantations, Sri Lanka is regarded as one of the next big ‘hot spot’ destinations.

Sri Lanka’s main towns and cities are a picturesque and colourful melange of scenic spots, each with their own pace and vibe.

The increasingly cosmopolitan capital, Colombo, retains some of its ‘garden city’ legacy while also being the home to significant religious and historic monuments, and the colourful and chaotic Pettah market.

The offer is valid for sale until April 30 this year and for travel from May 1 this year to March 30 next year.


Pacific Dunes Golf Club … a challenging test for any golfer.

Pacific Dunes Golf Club in Port Stephens has partnered with accommodation providers, shuttle services and Fly Pelican to offer new fly-stay-and-play packages out of Sydney.

An example of the packages involves staying at Ramada Resort at Shoal Bay. This option is priced from $147.50 per person twin-share midweek, including one night’s accommodation, green fees for 18 holes and lunch at the Greenhouse Eatery, with a $20 surcharge per person on weekends.

Flights between Sydney and Newcastle with Fly Pelican are priced from $59 per person one-way, including 20kg of baggage and all taxes.

Phone (02) 4916 0500 or visit the golf-course page on the Destination Port Stephens website (

 Kimo Estate …luxury boutique accommodation near Gundagai.

Tourism to regional New South Wales is booming, at least partly due to the opening of new luxury boutique accommodation offerings such as Kimo Estate, near Gundagai.

Set on a 7000-hectare working farm, Kimo Estate has built luxury eco-huts that sit proudly on the hills with 360-degree views over the Murrumbidgee River flats.

The architecturally designed huts provide a quiet spot to refresh, and feature solar power, a beautiful bathroom and gourmet breakfast.

The property’s 100-year-old workers’ cottages have also been stylishly refurbished and feature sweeping verandahs.


 Uluru Fork and View … a new dining experience in Central Australia.

Central Australian small-group specialist SEIT Outback Australia has partnered with ATG Downunder to launch Uluru Fork and View, a double-decker bus that’s been converted into an open-top restaurant at the base of Uluru.

Groups and private charters can now enjoy a dinner tour or a progressive three-course meal, while individual travellers can hop on for a morning-tea experience which is available daily.

A fully guided four-to-five hour sunset tour is priced at $250 per adult ex Ayers Rock Resort, including a three-course set menu and a premium-beverage package.


 Mantra Mooloolaba Beach … three-night deals over Easter.

If you prefer cheese and wine to chocolate eggs, then the Sunshine Coast isn’t a bad place to head this Easter.

The region will play host to the Kenilworth Cheese, Wine & Food Fest on Easter Saturday (15 April) — a free event that kicks off with a cheese-rolling competition, features a Cheester Egg Hunt for children aged four-to-seven years, and includes gourmet cooking demonstrations showcasing produce from the Mary Valley.

Other events on the Sunshine Coast this Easter include the Ocean Street World Festival on Sunday, April 16, when Maroochydore will celebrate diversity at a free event featuring artists across four stages, with acts from Japan to Bolivia, and Budapest to Jamaica.

There’s also the Pa and Ma Bendall Memorial Surfing Contest Surfers, one of Australia’s oldest surfing competitions, which will attract plenty of talent to Caloundra’s Moffat Beach over the whole Easter long weekend from 14-16 April.

Mantra Mooloolaba Beach has an Easter deal priced from $255 per night in a one-bedroom apartment (minimum three-night stay).

Phone 131 517 or visit

For general information on the region, visit

 The John Morrison SBF All Stars Big Band … Thredbo-bound this April.

Thredbo Jazz turns 30 this year and the 2017 festival will bring some of the country’s best jazz and roots music to the rooftop of Australia from April 28-30.

The festival program will see 17 bands playing in a variety of venues from the village to the top of the mountain, so festival goers can catch performers in different settings across the weekend.

Australian jazz legend Bob Barnard will return with the Barnard Family Jazz Band, and Thredbo crowd favourites, the Kirrawee High Band, will also return to show off their youthful energy and prodigious talent.

All-inclusive festival and accommodation packages are priced from $160 per person per night.

Phone the Thredbo Resort Centre on 1300 020 589 or visit

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