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August 2, 2014 Travel Deals No Comments Email Email

cookMasterChef winner Julie Goodwin will host her third four-night Murray River voyage with Captain Cook Cruises next March.

She will conduct three cooking demonstrations on board the paddle wheeler Murray Princess and also present a three-course dinner.

Other highlights include day trips to historic river ports, Aboriginal archaeological sites, a working sheep station and wool shed, a native wildlife shelter and a vineyard cellar-door.

Prices start from $1229 per person twin-share.

Phone 02 9206 1111 or visit

Active Travel is offering a new 16-day ‘Cuba, Salsa and the Revolutionaries’ hosted tour of the time-warped country next February.

By vintage car and on foot, guests will be guided through the alleys and squares of old-world Havana and also the community of Callejon de Hamel, famous for its lively rumba music and many buildings swathed in bright, psychedelic murals.

The tour covers Cuba from east to west, with highlights including a private salsa class and cocktail at Havana’s famous Sloppy Joe’s Bar, lunch at the home of a former bodyguard to revered Cuban revolutionary, Che Guevara, visits to Cuba’s famous tobacco farms, cigar factories and rum distilleries, a steam train ride through sugar plantations, a drive through the spectacular Vinales Valley with its dramatic, rocky outcrops, and visits to many of the country’s charming, colonial towns.

gympiePrices are from $4793 per person ex Havana.

Phone 1300 783 188 or visit

The Sunshine Coast will host one of Australia’s largest country-music celebrations, the Gympie Music Muster, from August 28-31.

Among more than 150 performers will be John Williamson, Lee Kernaghan, the McClymont Sisters, Sara Storer and Josh Pyke.

Various accommodation packages are available, including atmospheric Cooroy Country Cottages, where rates start from $150 per night (minimum two-night stay) for a one-bedroom cottage for two people.


Hilton Brisbane is offering a package in conjunction with the Queensland Gallery of Modern Art’s winter exhibition, Harvest: Art, Film + Food, which is on show until September 21.

The package is priced from $270 per couple per night and includes accommodation, a farmers-market-inspired breakfast, a grazing dish in Vintaged Bar, entry to the exhibition, a 20 per cent discount voucher at the gallery’s store and 1pm checkout.

Phone 1300 445 866 or

MSC Cruises is offering festive-season Mediterranean cruises priced from $81 per person per night twin-share.

mscAn ocean-view cabin for an 11-night cruise on MSC Sinfonia ex Genoa in December is priced from $889.

Included are ports of call in Italy, Greece, Turkey and Malta.

Phone 1300 028502 or visit

PIC: peppers.jpg — Bicicletta Italian restaurant … a feature of Peppers Gallery Hotel Canberra.

Peppers has opened its first CBD-based hotel — Peppers Gallery Hotel Canberra, in the heart of the national capital’s vibrant NewActon [SUBS NOTE: one word ok] precinct.

Formerly the Diamant Hotel, and originally opened in 1927 as the Acton Hotel, the property is an 80-room boutique hotel featuring the renowned Bicicletta Italian restaurant.

Opening specials are priced $194 per night Friday-Sunday and from $239 per night Monday-Thursday, including a cheese platter on arrival,OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA breakfast for two and 1pm checkout.


Malampa Travel has launched a collection of new tours to Vanuatu’s outer islands in the Malampa province.

Pay, for instance, from about $365 for a four-day Maskelyne Islands outrigger-canoe and venicesnorkelling tour.


Cruise Express will host a luxury 21-day cruise-tour in the Mediterranean next June, including a three-day coach tour to the Italian Lakes District and Tuscany.

Its ‘Treasures of the Mediterranean’ escorted tour begins with three nights in Rome, before a 12-night Mediterranean cruise on board to Venice, via Naples, Malta, Athens, Rhodes, Kusadasi in Turkey, the Crete harbour port of Souda and the two most famous Greek Islands – Santorini and Mykonos.

Prices start at $7889 per person twin-share, including return flights from Sydney, Melbourne, Perth, Adelaide or Brisbane.

Phone 1300 764 509 or visit apt

Fly free to France for APT’s 21-day Rhine, Rhône and Moselle itinerary.

Pay from $14,295 per person twin-share, including 14-night cruise from Amsterdam to the south of France, and three nights in each of Paris and Monte Carlo.

Dine out at a restaurant owned by renowned Michelin-starred French chef, Paul Bocuse; enjoy a tasting at a family-run winery; take the dogs out truffle hunting or visit a lavender estate in Viviers; and enjoy a private tour of Grignan castle.

aranuiBook by October 31 for select departures next year.

Phone 1300 196 420 or visit

Save hundreds of dollars on one of Aranui 3’s final 14-day voyages around the islands of Tahiti before the distinctive cruise freighter is retired late next year.

Pay from $8299 per person twin-share, including return airfares from Sydney, Brisbane or Melbourne, four nights accommodation in Manava Suite Tahiti and all transfers.

Ports of call include Nuku Hiva, Ua Pou, Tahuata, Fatu Hiva, Hiva Oa, Ua Huka in the Marquesas, Takapoto and Rangiroa in the Tuamotus and the famed Society Island of Bora Bora.

Valid for June 6 departure next year.


Save $1460 per couple on Bench International’s 13-night Grand Tour of South

Pay from $2190 per person twin-share ex Johannesburg.

Includes a two-night stay in Kruger National Park, and the spectacular Garden
 Route from Port Elizabeth to Cape Town.

preferredValid for September 1, 8 and 29 departures.

Phone 1300AFRICA or visit

Save up to 30 per cent at 18 Preferred Hotel Group properties across the Asia Pacific region.

ay, for instance, from US$110 per room per night for a seven-night stay at Zuri Whitefield Bengaluru, in the Bangalore suburb known as India’s Silicon Valley.

Relax and rejuvenate in the signature Maya Spa.

Valid until December 31.


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