TRAVEL DEALS: 17 June 2012


Cambodia: World Expeditions
$ TRANS-AUSTRALIA
 Campervans are officially hot – you can strap your board on, pack the kids or set up a moving lounge room and head across Australia. An army of Dutch and German tourists can’t be wrong. Crank up the cost-effective Aussie road trip adventure and save 5 per cent off for campervan bookings before June 30 for travel until December 31 2012. Quote the promo code “FAIR” when booking. Costs from $28 a day for a two-berth vehicle, relocations cost from $1 a day, drivenow.com.au 

$$ VICTORIA
Victoria’s little sister of ski, Lake Mountain, is best known for its 37km of cross-country skiing and toboggan slopes. Just two hours north of Melbourne, save $200 when you buy a Works Package, which gets two adults and two children ski and toboggan hire, a 90-minute cross-country ski lesson, family lunch voucher and vehicle entry. Costs $249 for a family of four, (03) 5957 7201, lakemountainresort.com.au

$$ SOUTH AUSTRALIA
Lake Mountain, Victoria
Soak up the serenity in the Clare Valley, a renowned antiques haunt 1½ hours north of Adelaide. Save $150 on a midweek deal (Mon-Thurs nights) at River Walk Cottage until end July. The new two-bedroom B&B sleeps six for an instant house party, with open fires and provisions for the big brekky, chocolates and a bottle of Taylor’s wine. The nearby Rising Sun is worth a visit for lunch. Costs $300 for three nights, riverwalkcottage.com.au
  
$$$ WESTERN AUSTRALIA
The dolphins are on tap at the Shark Bay World Heritage region, so it’s not a case of ‘blink and you’ll miss ‘em’. Stay four nights, get one night free in a garden villa at the 3.5-star Monkey Mia Dolphin Resort. Includes breakfast for you and the dolphins at a daily feed’n’frolic session. Travel before until December 14 (excluding 4-21 July). Costs $830 for four nights, 138 833, sunloverholidays.com.au

$$$$ QUEENSLAND
Take to the Sunshine Coast by foot on an eco-tastic, small-group walking trip along the Sunshine Coast Hinterland Great Walk, through the Glass House Mountains and Noosa National Park. Book the Sunshine Coast Hinterland (6-10 August) followed by a Lamington National Park trip (13-17 August) and save $200. Trips are fully guided and include meals, transfers and accommodation, including O’Reilly’s Guesthouse. Normally $1690 a person for a tour, book both by August 5, costs $3180 a person for two tours, (03) 9877 9540, parktrek.com

$$$$$ TASMANIA
The Freycinet coast is home to one of the world’s best beaches, Wineglass Bay, and the 11-day Forgotten Coast trip lets you explore by boat, foot or kayak up to the wildly beautiful Bay of Fires, on to Launceston and across the island in a small group of up to 16. Save $290 on bookings made six months before departure, with departures from October 31 to April 24. Costs from $5540 a person, twin share, 1800 467 747, inspiringjourneys.com.au

INTERNATIONAL
French food and tropical weather: Noumea
NOUMEA
French food and tropical weather – isn’t Noumea just perfect? Stay five nights, pay for four at the Ramada Plaza Noumea, which is also throwing in a Flavour Savour tour, a French cooking class, daily breakfasts, a two-course lunch, 10 percent off spa treatments and a voucher to blow at Le Casino. Costs from $1559 a person, including flights with Aircalin, book until 3pm June 29, 1300 130 485, travel.com.au

$ MALAYSIA
Sandakan, in Malaysian Borneo, is an eco-tourism paradise with bizarre proboscis monkeys, love-filled orang utan sanctuaries and amazing caves.  Times are a-changing with the arrival of the first international hotel brand: the new harbourside Four Points’ opening special runs until December 31 and includes breakfast for two, wi-fi and 4pm check out. Costs from $67++ for a deluxe room, +60 89 244 888, fourpoints.com/sandakan

CAMBODIA & LAOS
Treat your bestie to an adventure with World Expedition’s buy one, get one free 11-day small-group tours to Cambodia and Laos departing July 20 and August 3 and 24. In Cambodia, discover Phnom Penh, take a cooking class in Battambang and explore Angkor Wat by bike, then it’s all bears and Buddhas in Laos. Costs $2790 for two people, 1300 720 000, worldexpeditions.com

$$$$ INDIA
Riding the Himalayas, Extreme Bike Tours
Ride an Indian through the Himalayas: the Indian is a Royal Enfield motorbike, and the 15-day journey traverses the world’s highest rideable roads from Leh, in eastern Kashmir, along Khardung La and into the Nubra Valley, within co-eee of the Tibetan border and down to Manali, stopping for pics of two-humped camels. Cut a third off the price when mentioning this page, departs August 22-September 5. Now costs $2,565 for riders, $1,971 for pillion, land only, +91 9665 377 344, extremebiketours.com

$$$$$ TURKEY
Your steed is a late model BMW motorcycle, the biking nirvana is Turkey. Ride the stunning Turquoise Coast, visit poignant ANZAC battlegrounds of Gallipoli and sleep in a cave hotel in the fairy chimney landscape of Cappadocia on the 21-day Treasures of Turkey. To save 10 per cent on bookings before July 31 for a September 4 departure, quote ‘SHTOT12’. Includes bike, fuel, meals, accommodation and guides. Costs $10,208 for riders, $5,598 for pillion, land only, 1300 887 327, compassexpeditions.com  

TOURWATCH
Visit Europe on a small-group, fully escorted tour that includes boutique hotel accommodation and plenty of free time for your own exploration and picnics! With transport in new nine-seater mini coaches, Interlude Tours’ annual 35-day autumn Europe tour travels through France, Italy and Spain. “We have a lot of repeat customers, so we go to different places each year,” says tour owner and driver Jeanette Savage. “This year, we’re doing a D-Day tour in Normandy, visiting the Guggenheim in Bilbao and we’ll stay longer in Tuscany.”  She’s also excited about seeing the historic Bayeux tapestry for the first time. The fare includes return air fares Sydney to Paris with Thai Airways, departing September 18. Costs $10,995 a person, twin share, (02) 94052218, interlude-tours.com

Belinda Jackson
Source: Sun Herald

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