Fun Down Under!

Be it wildlife, nature or off-the-road experiences, Australia has it all. If it’s a fun-filled holiday you are after, then the Land of Oz is the place to go. Here’s a list of the top attractions across Australia that might help you plan your dream vacation — with fun and family in mind!

1. Commune with Wildlife

Perth

Join one of the many free walking tours of the island and meet adorable quokkas on Rottnest Island, just a 25-minute ferry ride from Fremantle, Perth. Don’t be afraid to walk up to the “world’s happiest creatures” for a selfie or two! With Rottnest’s warmer temperatures, families can also swim and snorkel in its waters, home to more than 135 species of vibrant tropical fish.

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Queensland

Ever dreamed of getting up close with dolphins in their natural habitat? Turn your dream into a reality by staying in the Tangalooma Island Resort and signing up for their wild dolphin feeding activity. The resort is only a 75-minute ferry ride from Brisbane to Tangalooma, off the coast of Southeast Queensland. Alternatively, transfers for the resort’s guests are provided from the Gold Coast.

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Canberra

Live among bears, lions and giraffes at the Jamala Wildlife Lodge, which offers a once-in-a-lifetime overnight safari experience. Located within the National Zoo & Aquarium, close to Canberra’s city centre, experience the thrill of feeding giraffes or hearing the soothing snores of bears from your balcony — truly an adventure to remember!

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2. Go Off Road

Swan Valley 

Take a 25-minute drive east of Perth to Swan Valley for vineyards and wildlife. Go cellar door hopping for a taste of fine, local wines or visit the Caversham Wildlife Park to cosy up to koalas and wombats. The fresh food lovers among you can also fill baskets full with gourmet goodies and fresh produce from roadside stalls and stores!

 Cruise with Crocodiles

Want a change from the usual adrenaline pumping activities when exploring rainforests? Explore the world’s oldest surviving rainforest in Daintree by taking a river cruise along the Daintree River, one of the longest rivers on Australia’s east coast to spot crocodiles, colourful birds and mighty barramundis. The Daintree village also has a number of eateries and souvenir shops for you to unwind at after a day of Discovery Channel-worthy adventures. Daintree is just an hour’s drive north of Cairn.

Float in a Hot Air Balloon

Feel the wind in your hair and enjoy spectacular views while welcoming the sunrise in a hot air balloon. There are many launch sites across Canberra for your convenience. If you like, you can also top off the morning with a gourmet breakfast at a cafe after the flight.

6 New Year Resolutions For Avid Travelers

The beginning of a new year signals an opportunity for a fresh start to reflect on resolutions that matters to you. You may strive to be healthier, learn something new or just be a better, more optimistic person by exploring new places.

When it comes to travel, everything eventually boils down to knowing what you are looking for and then planning the nitty-gritty details from booking your trip early to choosing the right dates and people with you. Checkout these travel bucket list that we’ve put together in welcoming 2018.

1. “Travel More in Year 2018”

Planning your trip early is highly recommended when you travel with a group of family or friends. The trickiest part is to source for activities that accommodates everyone of different preferences and age range. You can save a great deal with you book flights, hotels, tours, car rentals and transfers. The best way is to sign up for deals or otherwise you have to occasionally look out for travel websites. After all, booking your trip early lets you save up to travel more.

If you find yourself wanting to cover more places, you should opt for weekend trips instead of being tied to a single destination for the entire week. Having short trips that covers many places will give you more opportunity to set your footprints in different countries within a year. To spice things up further, try a new travel style if you have not decided on a holiday.

2. “Go On My First Road Trip”

Some of the most unforgettable memories are the unexpected ones when you spontaneously head off for a road trip holiday with friends.  Road trips are mostly for the once in the lifetime experience that will never slip your mind.

Australia’s tops our overall list of road trip destination for its breathtaking scenic route, famous landmarks and native wildlife

Recommended: 4 Epic Australian Road Trips to Ring in the New Year 

Take the wheel in a foreign country during weekends to experience this kind of impromptu vacation that lets you freely stop by at restaurants / attractions of your interest throughout your trip. Once you get a strong sense of familiarity with road trips, you can start to challenge yourself to drive on the other side of the road in countries such as US, Canada and Europe, which will be truly rewarding.

For those who prefer things to pan out nicely in advance, keep an eye for self drive tour packages.

3. “Chase The Southern Lights”

‘Northern Lights’ or  ‘aurora borealis’ is a mysterious light show, similar to neon lights caused by the collision of charged particles from the sun’s atmosphere into our atmosphere. Legends from the indigenous people hold various beliefs relating to the spirits of ancestors.

Closer to us is the ‘Southern Lights’ or “aurora australis’ that can be found in Tasmania sometime between March – September period. Auroras tend not to be very noticeable at times unless you take some shots with your camera using long exposure setting. Start preparing yourself for this trip by reading this comprehensive guide put together by a Singaporean travel photographer.

4. “Learn History From Sacred Temples”

Most of city folks tend to feel drawn to the idea of travelling to scared sites. These natural spots tend to have spiritual and religious meaning leading to the culture we know today attributing to the history across the world. Some of the world’s greatest sacred places are Angkor Wat, Easter Island, Machu Picchu, Perta, The Colosseum and The Parthenon. History makes a destination interesting because these places lets you appreciate artifacts from museums to old building architecture. You can broaden your list to include unexpected places that you’ve chosen for your holiday such as Hahndorf, Australia’s Oldest Surviving German Village.

Such holiday trip is a great exposure to know what it’s like to be surrounded by ancient sights in a historical atmosphere that you’ve known since childhood. Or, you can opt for a local tour guide to learn as much as you can about the interesting stories behind each sacred monument.

5. “Travel Solo In A Foreign Country”

Travelling solo in unknown places can be an intimidating yet considered one of the most rewarding experience because of the unpredictability at your discretion. There are different ways to travel alone where you have the complete freedom to decide your comfortable level of travel pace, schedule, budget and food options that benefits you the most. Another advantage is you’ll have the opportunity to meet people from walking tours / day excursions and possibly bump into an old friend who’s connected by just six degrees of separation. Plus, you never know what interesting people you’ll meet throughout your day. Locals tend to be more interested in people who travel independently in their country, be more engaging and be willing to help you out. You might also find yourself learning a few words of an entirely new language to converse with the locals.

Try travelling alone at least once in your lifetime. Be comfortable in yourself, rely on yourself on difficult times, enjoy things dramafree and notice the minutiae of your surroundings.

6. “See Bioluminescent In Maldives”

There’s a good news for frequent Maldives holiday-goers, they might actually get lucky to witness the natural occurrence of shimmering ocean in late night. This is caused by bioluminescent plankton that glows as a survival mechanism, shifting the predator’s attention to the flicker of light when provoked. For that reason, catching bioluminescent plankton involves an element of sheer luck for this reason. Maldives remains a famous place to visit for its sun, sands and sea, where you have the opportunity to join various marine activities such as mantra ray feeding session.

Let us know how you plan to achieve these resolutions. We recommend you to start looking now to book your trip in advance.

Start with some ideas for next trip

A Must-Visit Place in Adelaide – Adelaide Central Market

Established since 1869, the Adelaide Central Market is touted as one of the largest under cover market in the Southern Hemisphere, attracting over 8 million visitors annually.

Travel photographer, Jensen Chua rated the Central Market as a must visit place in Adelaide. What he enjoyed the most was the feel and dynamism of the locals that you usually get when you visit the city or town main market of a country.

Read more on his blog

Australia’s Oldest Surviving German Village – Hahndorf

Hahndorf is a small town in the Adelaide Hills within South Australia. This place is accessible within an easy 30min drive via the South Eastern Freeway from Adelaide. The German influence in Hahndorf noticeable and is seen in the traditional fachwerk architecture of the original surviving buildings.

Jensen Chua recently explored the restaurants and shops in the town serving German cuisine. He also visited the German migration museum, where he got to learn about stories behind the artefacts.

Read his blog

 

Apex Of Luxury Maldivian Getaways

Visitors who usually seek to enjoy the Maldivian paradise can be overwhelmed by the wide range of premium accommodation as each resort seeks to distinguish itself with unique features and no–holds–barred services.

This article will help you rediscover why you should pick Soneva Jani as your Maldives getaway

..Read on

The Luxury Paradise at The Baa Atoll

The very mention of Maldives always evolves an image of coconut palms on a tiny island, of azure crystal clear water, of postcard perfect scenery be it land or underwater. Yes, I can’t imagine anyone not falling in love with this tropical paradise. But just as true, are the pricey premium resorts that many would dream about and consider a vacation here “a trip of a lifetime” or something on their bucket list. Thus, as a travel blogger with Jetabout Holidays, I had the luck to experience more than half a dozen high-end resorts over a short period of time. It opened my eyes to the distinctively different features and characters of each resort..

Want to know which resort is this?
We have a Singaporean travel photographer with us, Jensen and his Maldives escapade trip.

Read more of his article HERE and don’t forget to cross-check your Maldives vacation below!

Going This Year?

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Planning For A Baa Atoll Resort Next Year?

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Escape to Paradise.. In Fiji Islands

This ‘Escape to Paradise in Fiji Islands’ travelogue touches on the island of South Viti Levu, Sigatoka town and Kuata island, is a continuation from my earlier article on my Fiji Islands adventure, where I explore the town of Savusavu in North Fiji, which many considered to be Fiji Islands’ best-kept secret. The beauty of Fiji Islands has a timeless and natural beauty quite unlike anywhere else in the world. Any vacationers, particularly those with interest in photography, will doubly enjoy the exotic and picture perfect islands.

SOUTH VITI LEVU ISLAND

Pure Fuji

My 1st stop on arriving on the island was Pure Fiji, a local manufacturer of natural earth-friendly and organic body care products. As the headquarter, the price here is the lowest anywhere in Fiji Islands. Locals and even tourists throng the place, buying their products in bulk. I had the chance to use their products during an earlier stay at Koro Sun Resort after which I became a fan of their hand-made soap and body lotion.

 

Read more on Jensen’s Blog

 

 

 

Australia’s Northern Territory: Take a Walk on the Wild Side

Take a break from the bright lights, big cities and living in the fast lane; adventure awaits in the Outback.
Australia’s mysterious Northern Territory (NT) boasts dreamy landscapes, dramatic waterfalls and colorful wildlife, and is just under a five-hour flight from Singapore to NT’s capital city Darwin. If you are in search of rich and soulful travel experiences then it’s time to leave behind the hustle and bustle of metropolitan cities for an adventurous time in wild Australia.

A FEAST FOR YOUR EYES

If you think that Stonehenge is fascinating, then you may be surprised to learn that Litchfield National Park, a two-hour drive south of Darwin also contains alien-looking artefacts. These two-metre high mounds, scattered across the Park are actually built by armies of tiny termites looking to protect themselves from the sun.

Florence Falls, Litchfield National Park, NT. Credit: Tourism Australia

 

Get ready to be awed by the spectacular network of waterfalls at the dual World Heritage-listed Kakadu National Park, a three-hour drive from Darwin. See the Twin Falls cascade over rugged cliffs from a floating boardwalk or behold the majestic Jim Jim Falls, gushing from 150-metre high cliffs.

Crocosaurus Cove, Darwin City. Credit: Shaana McNaught, Tourism NT
 
No visit to the great outdoors is complete without a face-to-face encounter with a local saltie (the Australian term for saltwater crocodiles). Adrenaline junkies, bring your bathing suit for a chance to dive with a resident saltie at Crocosaurus Cave in the Cage of Death, located right in the heart of Darwin’s central business district. For a tamer encounter with these awesome creatures, smile for the camera while holding a baby crocodile
TALES AS OLD AS TIME

The Northern Territory is famous for its indigenous communities and their rich medley of culture and art. Immerse yourself in the world of the Adelaide and Mary River natives on the Pudakul Aboriginal Cultural Tours, just a 45-minute drive from Darwin. Hear about the significance of the Pudakul, which is the name of the macaranga tree (a freshwater hibiscus) used by the natives to make spears. Get hands on by learning basket weaving and dilly bag making, throw a spear or blow a didgeridoo, an aboriginal wind instrument – playing it is not as easy as it looks! Get up close with local bush food and medicine then fill your tummy with some traditional damper (bush bread) and tea.

A SPLASHING GOOD TIME

Cool off after a long day of exploration at Nitmiluk National Park, home to a series of waterfalls and natural swimming holes, about an hour’s flight from Darwin. Take a refreshing dip in the palm-fringed plunge pool at the base of Edith Falls, or paddle in the rock pools of Butterfly Gorge as Common Crow butterflies dart above your head.

Edith Falls, Nitmiluk National Park, NT. Credit: Tourism Australia

If you are travelling with family, then Berry Springs Nature Park, a popular day trip destination with a series of shallow pools and deeper, plunge pools, ticks all the boxes for a fun-filled family day out. Located an hour’s drive south of Darwin, be sure to bring along your goggles for a chance to spot the colourful aquatic life in its crystal clear spring waters

DINING IN THE ‘OUTBACK’

Food is never far from a Singaporean’s mind. Why not eat like the locals and tuck into some traditional bush food while you are in the Outback? Do crocodile spring rolls and kangaroo fillet tickle your fancy? Yes, these exotic dishes are on Barra Bistro’s menu in Cooinda Lodge. Located beside Kakadu National Park’s Yellow Waters Billabong, this al fresco diner offers a true taste of outdoor Australian dining under a romantic leafy canopy.

Adventurous food lovers can try their hand at foraging and gathering bush tucker such as turtles, snakes, fruits and yams as part of the Animal Tracks safari in Kakadu National Park. Later, cook your food with meat and game like magpie goose, over a campfire and under the stars.

Beach lovers must pay Darwin’s Mindil Beach Sunset Market a visit. While here, treat yourself to a delicious array of dishes from every corner of the world as you drink in the gorgeous sunset and swaying coconut palms. Held every Thursday between May and October, this market serves dishes like taro custard on bamboo plates, Japanese omelette and fresh mango smoothies. Come armed with a picnic blanket and settle on the beach as the setting sun washes the sky in a blaze of colour.

Mindil Beach Sunset Markets, Darwin, NT. Credit: Tourism Australia
 
Ah… who knew that a mango smoothie could taste this good in Australia’s bush tucker territory?

Check out our 4-Nights Top End Nature’s Way Drive from only SGD670 per person Plus Receive FREE Duffel Bag for UOB Card Members, FREE Australia SIM Card & FREE Limited Edition Northern Territory! *Terms apply
Highlights of this trip includes 4 days care rental, 4 nights stay and Katherine Nitmiluk Dreaming 2 Gorge Cruise! Click here for MORE DETAILS!

Award Winning Indonesian Resort Nihiwatu.. is under new ownership

7th April 2017 – J. Christopher Burch, founder and CEO of Burch Creative Capital, an entrepreneur and active investor across a wide range of industries for nearly thirty years acquired Nihiwatu on the Indonesian island of Sumba in 2013 in partnership with acclaimed hotelier James McBride.  Mr. Burch has been a strategic investor in multiple technology and luxury brands, including  C. Wonder, Aliph (Jawbone), NextJump, PowerMat, Voss Water and Tory Burch.

 

The exquisite 33 villa estate Nihiwatu is located on Sumba Island, a mere 55 minute flight East of Bali, offering its guests absolute privacy, appropriate luxury, spectacular scenery and one of the best waves in the world-in short an un-touched exclusive hideaway in the “Archipelago of the Extraordinary.”

 

 

 

Situated in a protected environment, Nihiwatu is a sanctuary to all who stay and offers much more than a holiday destination.  Nihiwatu opens guests up to the unparalleled nature surrounding them. Visitors may either experience a choice of outdoor activities (fishing, diving, horse-riding, boating and yoga/ spa) or, just relax in perfect tranquility

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

“Nihiwatu is a rarity today. The opportunity we have been given to continue the work of its creators Claude and Petra Graves is tremendous. We want to spread the word about this extraordinary place, the island of Sumba and its people for generations to come. Our aim is to evolve into one of the best resorts in world, whilst demonstrating a successful and sustainable operation with the environment and the Sumbanese people,” commented Chris Burch

 

One of today’s best possible examples of sustainable tourism (Grand Award for Environmental Tourism PATA & Best Responsible Hotel Development HICAP), Nihiwatu has captured the hearts and minds of its new owners who are entirely committed to continuing the work of the charitable trust, The Sumba Foundation. Established in 2001, the Foundation extends support to 20,000 islanders and provides clean water supply to villages whilst addressing malnutrition and education needs on Sumba. 90% of the foundation’s donations come from hotel guests and all of the distributions are made directly to the local Sumbanese community.

 

 

The thatched private villas are set within a 580 acre estate comprising forested areas, open savannah and expanses of rice terraces of which only 65 acres are developed.  The pristine, fine-grained pink and beige hues of Nihiwatu’s adjacent sandy beach extends to two and a half kilometers (1.6 miles) in length with cliff headlands at each end providing an exclusivity unmatched anywhere in Indonesia.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Nihiwatu’s origin has to some degree evolved around “The Wave,” recognised as one of the best left-hand surf breaks in the world.  The founders of Nihiwatu, Claude and Petra Graves who arrived on Sumba in 1988 wished to protect it from becoming overpopulated and set about to carefully manage access to a maximum of ten surfers at any given time. As a result of protecting land and sea, Sumba has gained a cult status in the international surfing community.

 

 

It is rare for luxury in environment and philanthropy to co-exist in such perfect harmony; great care has always been taken to consult with the Sumbanese to ensure that everything at Nihiwatu is done to respect beliefs.

 

From a historical and cultural perspective, Sumba is the home of one of the world’s last intact Animist cultures: to witness Sumbanese culture is like looking through a window to the past. One of the most culturally interesting places in the world, on Sumba faith in old traditions is very strong.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Nihiwatu extends a starting rate of USD1,000++ per room per night, including full board accommodation, Wi-Fi internet, mini-bar, laundry, daily excursions and activities on land, non-motorized sea activities, scheduled group yoga & meditation classes at the Yoga Pavilion. Rates are based on a minimum 3-night stay in an entry-level villa during Shoulder season.

 

Garuda Indonesia currently operates a daily flight from Bali’s Ngurah Rai International Airport to Sumba Island (50 minutes).


“Interested with all inclusive trip to Indonesia and experience this widely acclaimed #1 hotel in the world (by Travel + Leisure Magazine)?

Find current Promotion for 3 Nights of Nihiwatu resort from SGD3450 – here

#1 Best Travel Agency for New Zealand – Jetabout Holidays

best travel agency for new zealand

We’re pleased to announce that Jetabout Holidays was recently voted by the people as a winner of Traveller’s Choice 2017 as Best Travel Agency for New Zealand. We are thankful for your continued support and contributions to our perspective on learning to serve you better. The growth we’ve experienced over the years is because of travellers like you, who faithfully support our business.

What makes New Zealand so special, you asked? The first impression you should know about New Zealand is the friendliness of the the people, dramatic scenery and outdoor lifestyle. Think sand dunes, mountains, geyser and caves! This excitement you gained from conquering a new destination is one of the biggest reason why people love to travel to countries like New Zealand. A “Kiwi getaway” is an amazing opportunity for you to do something different and challenging, especially something that you cannot do in at home.

(Read about Michelle’s who discovered adventure side of herself in this article)

You’d be able look back and start to have a sense of familiarity for the country you’ve visited. Let us help you make that trip to New Zealand happen and you’ll see why you will feel the sense of fulfillment and new level of fun.

Find New Zealand offers and itineraries here

Got your own story about your trip to New Zealand? We’d love to hear from you, write to us here!