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Travellers’ Good Buys Compiled By John Rozentals

August 5, 2017 Travel Deals No Comments Email Email

Save up to 56 per cent at the four-star Aristo Saigon Hotel in Vietnam’s Ho Chi Minh City.

Book by August 31 for a $65 per-night room rate, valid for travel until September 10.

The hotel is located only a few minutes out of the CBD in District 3, and within walking distance of the Notre Dame Church, Central Post Office, War Remnants Museum and Independence Palace.

It offers an on-site restaurant, free breakfast and health club and free wi-fi. Conference spaces and meeting rooms are available.

The Guggenhein Museum in Bilao … On Celebrity Silhouette’s European schedule.

An illustrious line-up of opera and musical theatre legends will entertain guests on a 27-night Cruise Express fly-stay-cruise package to Europe in May next year.

The tour is priced from $12,990 per person twin-share ex Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Adelaide or Perth, including three nights in London with visits to Kensington Palace, Windsor Castle, the backstage workshops of the Royal Opera House and the unique Wallace Collection art exhibition at Hertford House.

The journey then moves to sea with a seven-night round-trip performing-arts cruise from Southampton aboard the 2900-passenger Celebrity Silhouette, including three ports in Spain and France and performances by the likes of Welsh soprano Katherine Jenkins OBE, English tenor Alfie Boe and New Zealand baritone Teddy Tahu Rhodes.

Cruise Express guests will remain on-board for a 14-night, round-trip cruise to Russia, Scandinavia and Germany, with ports including the medieval city of Tallinn, the quirky Finnish capital of Helsinki and the pretty islands and cobblestoned streets of Stockholm.

Phone 1300 764 509 or visit

 Hong Kong’s Regal Oriental … offering a ‘Love Kowloon Package’.

Hong Kong’s Regal Oriental hotel, in the heart of Kowloon’s historic walled-city area, is offering short-stay rates from $155 a night.

The ‘Love Kowloon Package’ deal is available between Sunday and Thursday until September 30 and includes complimentary breakfasts and in-room internet access, welcome drinks, free use of the fitness centre and a late-checkout on departure day.

It provides the opportunity to explore a host of Chinese restaurants, visit traditional markets and grocery stores and wander through the nearby Kowloon Walled City Park, the Chi Lin Nunnery and the Wong Tai Sin temple.


 Sighisoara … a typically historic Romanian city.

Butterfield & Robinson has added Romania biking to its portfolio of Eastern European itineraries, featuring cycling the fortified towns outside Transylvania and gliding past centuries-old plots of colourful, sweeping farmland.

The biking trip begins in Sibiu in central Romania and ventures through the countryside, stopping at vibrant signature hotels in Cund, Sighisoara and Talisoara. Along the way travellers will visit settlements in Transylvania dating back to 1230 and UNESCO heritage sites.

Cycling is along well paved, hilly roads which will guide cyclists throughout their journey, including stops in historic Saxon villages connected by vast beech and oak forests.

There will also be an opportunity witness authentic Romanian traditions at the village of Viscri, which is recognised by UNESCO for its authenticity as a historical site.

Accommodation includes Daniel Castle, a renovated renaissance palace in Talisoara.

Prices start at $7275 per person twin-share.


The Chef’s Table … intimate dining on board Scenic Eclipse.

Scenic Eclipse will have travellers rediscovering their tastebuds when it launches in August next year, featuring a choice of 10 dining experiences such as contemporary French fine dining in Lumiere, sushi and sake at Asian-fusion venue Koko’s, or a casual meal in the Azure Bar & Café.

For those seeking a more personal dining experience, there’s the Chef’s Table, which features a private degustation for eight guests.

Among the bars and lounges on Scenic Eclipse will be an intimate Champagne Bar where guests can sip a glass of France’s finest, an elegant Lobby lounge, cosy Observatory and Library — perfect for enjoying a specialty tea — as well as the relaxed Azure Bar & Café, where guests can enjoy a plate of oysters accompanied by a crisp glass of pinot gris.

Phone 138 128 or visit

SeaLink … commencing the first ferry operation between Manly and Sydney’s new Barangaroo development.

The SeaLink Travel Group will commence operation of the Barangaroo Fast Ferry, the first direct ferry service from Manly to Barangaroo, from early September.

The service will operate daily between Manly Hotel Wharf No 3, and King Street Wharf 1, Barangaroo, and will depart every 30 minutes during peak hours Monday to Friday commencing 6.45am. On weekends the service will operate regularly from 9.30am through to 6pm.

Prices are from $8.90 one-way, with an 11-trip travel pass available from $7.50 per trip.

Phone 9206 1111 or visit

Burrinjuck Waters manager Dean Brind welcomes Hume & Hovell Track hikers aboard Getaway.

Inland Waters Holiday Parks Burrinjuck Waters is ideally positioned for an outdoors experience on the 425-kilometre Hume & Hovell Track, which runs between Yass and Albury.

A particularly beautiful section of the track runs for five kilometres north from the park to the idyllic Burrinjuck Nature Reserve.

The Hume & Hovell Track follows the route taken by explorers Hamilton Hume and William Hovell on their famous 1824 trek to Port Phillip and is a key attraction for guests visiting the area.

The recent arrival of the park’s tourist vessel, Getaway, also provides a vital link for hikers to cross Burrinjuck Dam and reach the next stage of their trip and the scenic locality of Wee Jasper.

Visit and

 A lifetime’s memories … a Hannaford and Sachs lunch under an ancient fig tree.

Spend three days sampling the best of Kangaroo Island fresh produce and wines with Kangaroo Island Odysseys’ new three-day summer/spring tours.

All seasonal KIO food-and-wine tours are fully inclusive, including return flights from Adelaide to Kangaroo Island and all Adelaide airport transfers.

Explore the island with a private tour guide in luxury, air-conditioned 4×4 vehicles in small groups of no more than eight guests, with accommodation at the opulent Lifetime Private Retreats or Sea Dragon Lodge.

Experience a personalised vineyard and winery tour at Islander Estate Vineyard, Bay of Shoals Wines or Dudley Wines, taste locally distilled Gin and spirits at KI Spirits, sample a variety of delicious cheese and yoghurts at the Island Pure Sheep Dairy, stop at Island Beehive for a tour and honey tastings, sample the island’s freshest oysters at the Kangaroo Island Shellfish Oyster Farm Shed and enjoy a half-day fishing charter.

Dining experiences are arranged by Hannaford and Sachs, and showcase Kangaroo Island’s best seasonal food in a range of outdoor settings and stunning coastal locations.

Dine, for example, underneath the boughs and leaves of a massive, ancient fig tree planted by the early settlers more than 100 years ago.

The three-day ‘Sensations of Kangaroo Island Summer Tour – North Coast’, for instance, is priced at $2708 per person and includes all activities and meals, plus two-nights accommodation at Lifetime Private Retreats.

Phone 08 8553 0386 or visit

Curtis Stone … will officially open this year’s Margaret River Gourmet Escape.

 Margaret River Gourmet Escape will return from November 16-19 with an appetising line-up of new events and talent, including Australian culinary hero Curtis Stone.

The event will feature more than 50 of the world’s leading food-and-wine personalities, including chefs such as Andre Chiang (Singapore), David Thompson (Thailand), Ashley Palmer-Watts (UK), Rodolfo Guzman (Chile), Alex Atala (Brazil), and Asia’s Best Female Chef, May Chow (Hong Kong).

Curtis Stone will officially open the festival at an Audi Gourmet Beach BBQ session in the pristine surrounds of Castle Bay Beach.

New events include The Great Soiree at Fraser Gallop Estate, The High Life (a helicopter lunch with Paul Iskov) and the Official Closing Party at the White Elephant Café.

Paying homage to Margaret River’s 50th anniversary of commercial wine production, the festival will host a selection of exclusive wine events, with world-renowned wine critic Jancis Robinson (UK) joining the festivities, alongside other respected names such as James Halliday and Huon Hooke.


Mt Buller … things go a little crazy for the Pond Skim.

September at Mt Buller is shaping up to be a great time to be on the mountain, with a raft of special activities.

All September up to two kids under 15 stay free at many accommodation houses with with two adults.

On September 2, Mt Buller hosts the ABOM Mogul Challenge, with the world’s best freestylers tackle the bumps at Mt Buller.

The challenge attracts a world-class field including Winter Olympians and World Cup competitors and this iconic, colourful mogul competition is now one of the longest-running race events in the world.

On September 9, visitors dig out their best 1980s gear and take to the slopes, while appropriate music pumps through the village.

Then on September 23 things go a little crazy for the Pond Skim when skiers dress up and attempt to skim their way across a large pond built in the middle of Bourke Street ski run.


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