Wildlife, Wildflowers and Wild Adventures in Sequim, Washington’s Secret Gem

October 22, 2014 on 2:17 pm | In Adventure Travel, Pacific Northwest | Comments Off



wickers.com COUPON 10% OFF all ordersPORT ANGELES, Wash.— Washington’s Olympic Peninsula boasts quaint port towns and adventures around every dock, and the town of Sequim is no exception. With a population of 6,600 residents, Sequim is surrounded by natural beauty and offers a friendly small town feel. With more days of sunshine than anywhere else in Western Washington, Sequim is protected from the rain by the Olympic Mountains, allowing just the right amount of weather to enter into the town to ensure the landscape remains bountiful with lush valleys and vegetation.

As the gateway to Olympic National Forest, Sequim lures visitors who are on the never-ending search for adventure and a simpler way of life. Taking full advantage of all that Olympic National Forest has to offer, outdoorsmen arrive to Sequim prepared to paddle, hike, bike and explore the naturally beautiful environment.

Sequim has also become the Lavender Capital of North America, with over 30 farms covered by colorful and fragrant herbs. Sequim and Dungeness Bay offer visitors the opportunities to sail, bird-watch and kayak the breathtakingly beautiful surroundings while getting their fix in Mother Nature. And of course, don’t forget to keep your eyes peeled for the Sequim Roosevelt elk herd, which can be spotted on the southeastern slopes of town!

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O.A.R.S. Releases River of Eden by Filmmaker Pete McBride

October 22, 2014 on 2:10 pm | In Adventure Travel, Webbandstand | Comments Off



Backcountry.com Winter ClearanceShort Film That Explores Fiji’s Protected “Tropical Grand Canyon” Selected as Banff Mountain Film Festival Finalist

Angels Camp, CA – Veteran river outfitter and ecotourism operator O.A.R.S. announces the release of a new short film, River of Eden, by award-winning filmmaker and National Geographic Freshwater Hero Pete McBride. Selected as a finalist for the 2014 Banff Mountain Film Festival in November, the five-minute movie tells the unique conservation story behind one of the only protected rivers in the South Pacific—Fiji’s Upper Navua.

For the film, McBride traveled into the highlands of Fiji’s main island of Viti Levu to explore the Upper Navua River and find out why the locals said “no” to easy money from resource extraction, and instead, turned to tourism to fund a conservation area. What he discovered was not only one of the most beautiful rivers on Earth—a “mini-tropical Grand Canyon”—but a low-impact commercial rafting operation in the Upper Navua Conservation Area that has given more than $1 million back to local communities in the last 15 years.

The Upper Navua Conservation Area was established in 1998 when Rivers Fiji, with the dedicated support of O.A.R.S. president and founder, George Wendt, and an unlikely group of local entities including two villages, nine mataqalis (land-owning clans), a logging company and a government organization, opted for long-term sustainability through tourism. To protect the area’s natural assets, the group banded together to set-up a 25-year land lease that precludes logging, road building or mining in the fragile river corridor. In River of Eden, McBride takes viewers on an intimate exploration of this protected paradise and shows the power of ecotourism to promote a conservation ethic in developing parts of the world.

Kevin Fedarko, author of The Emerald Mile: The Epic Story of the Fastest Ride in History Through the Heart of the Grand Canyon, had this to say about the film: “Over the last several years, Pete McBride has carved out a space on the landscape of documentary filmmaking where art, conservation, and the beauty of nature meet and flow together. River of Eden offers a glimpse of what McBride does best—which is to create, through images, words, and music, a confluence of ideas that is provocative, inspiring, and deeply moving.”

River of Eden may be viewed online at riverofeden.com where people can also enter a sweepstakes to win an eight-day trip to Fiji for two from O.A.R.S., including airfare from Los Angeles to Nadi International Airport courtesy of Fiji Airways.

The film will also appear on the big screen at the Banff Mountain Film Festival in Alberta, Canada on Thursday, November 6. Presented by National Geographic, The North Face and Parks Canada, the Banff Mountain Film Festival is one of the most prestigious film festivals in the world.

Filed under Member News & Profiles, Member Press Releases, _HPFeature ·

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Make the Most of Your Next Vacation with a Custom Itinerary

October 22, 2014 on 11:21 am | In Adventure Travel | Comments Off



MINNEAPOLIS— With so many options in travel today, a sense of comfort with whom you choose to travel is essential. Offering various travel programs that suit a wide variety of travel styles and budgets, Borton Overseas is able to customize any itinerary based upon your travel preferences. One of the most impressive aspects of the Borton Overseas experience is working with highly knowledgeable Destination Specialists. Traveling with Borton means having every detail thoughtfully planned and thoroughly executed to ensure the most memorable experience for the traveler.

Borton Overseas specializes in select destinations and therefore, travelers may rest assured knowing they are in good hands. Determined to make the most of that long-awaited vacation, Destination Specialists work directly with clients to explore all possibilities and present various options based upon one-on-one conversations. In addition to offering small cruises worldwide, planning unique, world-class trips to Scandinavia and Africa is Borton Overseas’ niche. Forget impersonal call centers and contact Borton Overseas today to experience the truly unique Borton difference!


The Great Wagyu Adventure

October 22, 2014 on 11:20 am | In Adventure Travel, Australia, New South Wales, Sydney | Comments Off



Air Adventure has just launched an exciting new one day tour, The Great Wagyu Adventure where visitors embark on a two state adventure with three iconic Australian experiences. In only 50 minutes from takeoff in Melbourne, guests land amongst the vines of Coonawarra in South Australia and are then whisked across to Wynn’s Estate for a behind the scenes tour and the opportunity to try their hand at wine making. Next stop is the multi award winning Mayura Station in Millicent which is renowned for their premium quality Wagyu beef. Here guests enjoy a three course lunch showcasing the diversity of this premium beef product, one course includes the signature ‘Brand 9+’. The return trip has a scenic orbit of the iconic 12 Apostles along the Great Ocean Road in Victoria.


Chile-Based Singular Hotels Brand’s Santiago Property‏

October 22, 2014 on 11:18 am | In Adventure Travel, Chile, South America | Comments Off



Backcountry.com Winter Clearance70,000 Square Foot, 62-Room Hotel in Santiago’s Lastarria District

SANTIAGO – Following a successful launch of The Singular Patagonia in December 2011, Singular Hotels is getting ready to launch their second innovative hotel project; this time in Santiago’s cultural district of Lastarria. The family owned and operated hotel group invested nearly $20 million in the new 70,000 square foot, 62-room state-of-the-art, luxurious city center hotel, which although a brand new build has remained true to reflecting the historic elements and charm of its original European-style.

Local architect Federico Prieto, owner of Prieto Schaffer Architects, and award-winning Chilean designer Enrique Concha have led the design of the project which is located in the National Monument Council protected “Zona Tipica.” The Singular Santiago will be a full service hotel including a 3,000 square foot SPA and fitness facility, a fine dining restaurant, 24-hour room service, as well as a more casual bar. In addition, the property will boast a rooftop outdoor pool, a Sky (Rooftop) Lounge and four meeting rooms outfitted with the latest audio-visual technology.

“The original concept behind Singular Hotels was to develop projects that are, just that, Singular in nature, yet sharing a commitment to the local heritage, architecture and historical significance,” explains Singular Hotels Managing Director Nicolas Sahli. He continues, “Lastarria is the perfect location for our second property as the area not only has a rich past, but has become the artistic and cultural center of Santiago.

wickers.com COUPON 10% OFF all ordersWe are pleased to have created an urban retreat that offers guests a unique experience that is as inspiring and wonderful as the surrounding neighborhood.”

Part of what will make The Singular a sophisticated urban retreat, besides that of which is inherent in its design, is the level of service and amenities the new property will offer.

At the forefront is the new fine dining, French-style restaurant led by Chefs Laurent Pasqualetto and Alvaro Romero who will focus on “high gastronomy” and utilizing classic French techniques to elevate Chilean dishes utilizing locally grown products.

The restaurant will cater to the palates of the public, as it will be open to non-hotel guests and have a separate street entrance connecting to an interior garden.

The hotel and restaurant will meld with their surroundings quite synergistically.

The Lastarria neighborhood as a whole has led a renaissance for Santiago over the last several years and continues to develop into a melting pot of elite European styles mixed with chic bohemian influence. Restaurants, bars and nightclubs play host to the global traveler while craft stores, bookshops and innovative art museums illustrate the areas creative roots and intellect.

The Singular Santiago is slated to open October 1, 2014.


Aurora Expeditions Launch New 2015-2016 Expedition Guide

October 22, 2014 on 11:14 am | In Adventure Travel, Cruise Boats | Comments Off



Goddess Swimwear from Today ShowAurora Expeditions, the experts in small-ship expedition cruising, is pleased to announce the launch of their new 2015-2016 Expedition Guide. For the first time ever, the guide encompasses expeditions across all seven continents featuring 21 itineraries, 18 destinations and over 80 individual departures, and is jammed packed with a range of new bonus inclusions.

The company’s expanded program now includes a new 15-day ‘African Cruise Safari’ to some of the most concentrated wildlife regions of South Africa, Zimbabwe and Botswana. The expedition highlights include a four-day cruise on the Chobe River on board luxury riverboat Zambezi Queen, with game viewing from special excursion crafts, as well as nights in traditional safari lodges and game drives through Chobe and Hwange National Parks.

The new Expedition Guide also showcases Aurora Expeditions’ commitment to creating better value trips with each itinerary featuring an array of additional inclusions on top of the usual accommodation, meals and shore excursions. These range from exclusive polar jackets for all passengers to Antarctica and the Arctic, included flights and accommodation, free polar photography workshops and a printed photo book memento.

In Scotland passengers will receive a 12-month National Trust membership and an onboard genealogist will assist passengers in tracing their Scottish ancestry. Free artist workshops along the Kimberley Coast will allow budding artists to create their own Kimberley masterpiece.

A BirdLife Australia specialist will interpret birdlife on board two ‘Spitsbergen Odyssey’ voyages and, for the first time, on the ‘Scotia Sea Springtime’ expedition to Antarctica and South Georgia – both unforgettable trips for keen birders. Plus, all passengers on these voyages will also receive a 12-month BirdLife Australia membership.

In Antarctica, passengers will have the chance to enjoy a ‘floating exhibition’ of Frank Hurley’s iconic Antarctic images as Aurora Expeditions starts the commemorations of the centenary of Sir Ernest Shackleton’s 1914-1917 Imperial Trans-Antarctic Expedition. A series of dedicated Shackleton Centenary Expeditions will also include a special program of on board events including a commemorative dinner, visits to key historic sites, special memorial at Shackleton’s gravesite in Grytviken cemetery, a memorial badge and a specially created centenary photo book.

Other inclusions include complimentary kayaking, stand up paddle boarding and polar snorkelling in Alaska, city sightseeing tours in Ecuador, free camping in Antarctica, and a scenic heliflight over Mt Everest as part of the company’s Himalaya trekking program.

Aurora Expeditions is also reinforcing its ‘No Single Supplement’ stance for those passengers willing to share a cabin, offering a cabin mate finding service across all of its departures.

To order a copy of Aurora Expeditions’ new 2015-2016 Expedition Guide call +61 2 9252 1033 or visit www.auroraexpeditions.com.au

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What’s New in New Hampshire: Attraction, Lodging & Culinary News‏

October 22, 2014 on 11:01 am | In Adventure Travel, New England, Webbandstand | Comments Off



Save $50 at BedandBreakfast.comATTRACTION:

Attitash Mountain Resort, Bartlett: Attitash has opened its new Zip Tour attraction featuring the Flying Bear and Attitash Aerial Zip Lines. The zip line from the summit of Bear Peak to the base of Attitash Mountain is the longest single span zip line in the Continental U.S. at just under 5,000 feet long and reaching heights of more than 400 feet. www.attitash.com

Bear Rock Adventures, Colebrook: A new and exciting way to see the North Country: via ATV & UTV tours. Visitors can climb to the highest peaks and the most secluded spots or take a gentle ride to the Connecticut River to explore the Grand North’s Ride the Wilds trail system. www.bearrockadventures.com

Seacoast Helicopters, Portsmouth: Seacoast Helicopters has expanded their services to include aerial tours and air charters. Enjoy breath-taking views of NH and the Seacoast area in one of their new, state-of-the-art custom helicopters. Their R66 Turbine can take you out to the Isles of Shoals and up to Nubble Lighthouse to experience views not possible from the water; there are a total of 5 lighthouses on this tour. P: 1-800-SC-HELOS, www.seacoasthelos.com

Heritage Trail, Statewide: Announcing new “Experience New Hampshire Heritage” trail. This was created in a partnership effort to show the diverse museums, historic sites, and homes from Portsmouth to Plymouth that highlight New Hampshire Heritage. http://nhmuseumtrail.org

Backcountry.com Winter ClearancePeterborough Walking Mobile App Tour, Peterborough: The town’s new walking mobile app tour is now available. This is a great opportunity to explore Peterborough and learn about the culture and history here. There is also information on area attractions, dining and lodging. Get the app at: http://Peterborough.toursphere.com

Public Arts Walk, Portsmouth: Art-Speak has created a new art walk featuring public art of Portsmouth. The walk features both historic and contemporary works of public art. www.art-speak.org/artwalk

LODGING:

Bernerhof Inn B&B, Glen: The Bernerhof Inn announces its installation of a charging station for electric cars. This free amenity is available to guests and visitors alike, traveling to and through the Mount Washington Valley. www.bernerhofinn.com

Hanover Inn, Hanover: Named the 2014 “Best Environmental Inn” by Yankee Magazine. The inn’s new farm-to-fork restaurant, PINE, offers special dinners and cook-with-the-chef events this fall. www.hanoverinn.com

The Inn by the Bandstand, Exeter: Recently under new management, the inn is currently undergoing an extensive renovation in order to better preserve and reflect the inn’s historical significance and elegance. This 9 bedroom inn is located in an historic 1809 Federal home on the seacoast, and caters to guests from all over the world. www.innbythebandstand.com

The Lodge, Bretton Woods: Newly renovated and now open. The lodge offers balcony views overlooking the Presidential Mountain Range with easy access to a number of outdoor activities and ski resorts. www.brettonwoods.com

CULINARY:

7th Settlement Brewery, Dover: 7th Settlement Brewery is a new community supported brew pub that offers handcrafted food and beer with fresh, local ingredients. They offer daily specials, trivia, live music and entertainment, and brewery tours. www.7thsettlement.com

Dancing Lion Chocolate, Manchester: Dancing Lion Chocolate will now be open on weekdays for breakfast. They will be offering an assortment of drinks, croissants, biscotti, marjorcas and assorted baking goods. www.dancinglionchocolate.com

Webbandstand for Concerts and Performing Arts

European Waterways’ Announces 2015 Journeys Of Discovery Across Nine Countries

October 22, 2014 on 7:47 am | In Adventure Travel, Belgium, Cruise Boats, Czech, Denmark, Europe, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, London, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Paris, Scotland, Switzerland, United Kingdom | Comments Off



Goddess Swimwear from Today ShowThis month has seen the launch to the marketplace of European Waterways’ 2015 Brochure, featuring a choice of luxury hotel barge cruises in nine European countries – France, Belgium, Italy, Holland, Luxembourg, Germany, Scotland, England and Ireland.

The new 62-page, full-colour, illustrated Brochure – and accompanying price insert – features a double page spread on the scenic cruise destinations – from the Canal du Nivernais and Canal du Midi in France, to the River Po in Italy and Caledonian Canal in Scotland; sample regional menus and fine wines; and a taste of the daily excursions to be experienced en route.

Highlights for 2015 include:

In April a series of three, 6-night World War One Commemorative cruises aboard the 12-passenger hotel barge La Belle Epoque, along waterways which pass through the battlefields of Flanders and the Somme
Off-the-beaten-track excursions, for example, the Aalsmeer flower auction in Holland, or the Troglodyte cave dwellings in the Loire Valley

Longer waterway journeys through Holland, Belgium, France, Germany & Luxembourg – trans-regional voyages for the more adventurous travellers, navigating a longer route of varied landscapes

Accommodating from 6 – 20 passengers, the fully-crewed fleet of 18 European Waterways’ floating hotel barges offer discerning travellers the chance to embark on journeys of discovery along some of Europe’s most beautiful inland waterways, while enjoying first-class service and like-minded congenial company.

The hotel barge cruising “difference” – varying from that of the more mainstream forms of cruising – provides a relaxed, private house party atmosphere; access to waterways inaccessible to larger vessels; travelling less than 70 miles at a leisurely pace; and unique experiences such as the Arzviller Boat Elevator, Eiffel’s Pont Canal de Briare and the Malpas Tunnel.

Groups of friends, or multi-generational families can also charter any of the hotel barges exclusively – perhaps for a special celebration; or a wide selection of themed charter cruises can be arranged, appealing to special interest groups, whether golf, or wine appreciation, walking, or tandem barge cruises for larger groups.

Typically, 6-night voyages include all meals, selected domaine and chateau wines, an open bar, daily escorted excursions, local transfers and use of all onboard facilities such as bicycles and spa pools.

2015 prices for a 6-night cruise, based on double occupancy, lead in at £2,290 per person aboard La Bella Vita cruising in the River Po Valley, or at £14,000 (4 people) for a whole-boat charter aboard the 6-passenger Nymphea in the Loire Valley.

About European Waterways

European Waterways, Europe’s largest luxury hotel barge cruising company, carries over 2,000 passengers a year. Founded nearly 40 years ago, they own, operate and market a private fleet of luxury hotel barges with cruises in France, Italy, Scotland, Ireland, England, Germany, Belgium, Holland and Luxembourg. Pioneers in hotel barging, they were the first company to operate a hotel barge on the Upper Nivernais in Burgundy, and the “Château country” of the Loire. They are also the only cruise company offering barge cruises in Scotland and in the Venetian lagoon and River Po valley.

Follow European Waterways on Facebook and Twitter and view their YouTube channel.

Full details: www.gobarging.com

For Reservations Tel: +44(0) 1753 598555


New Dragoman Brochure Out Now! New Trips, New Routes, New Destinations, New Fleet…

October 22, 2014 on 7:44 am | In Adventure Travel, Asia, China, India, London, Myanmar, Road Trips, United Kingdom | Comments Off



wickers.com COUPON 10% OFF all ordersDragoman, the award-winning 33 year old overland specialist, has just launched its 2015 – 2016 brochure, out now. The new brochure, which can be viewed here, offers travellers aged between 18 – 70+ years nearly 320 trips to 55 countries in Asia, the Americas and Africa, varying in trip length from 6 days to 235 days.

World firsts in 2014: Burma, Bhutan and an exclusive Inca Trail

New destinations for 2014 include several world firsts; Dragoman is the first major overland operator to offer trips to Burma and Bhutan. Dragoman has also launched a brand new Community Inca Trail, an exclusive route to Machu Picchu that not only avoids the crowded Inca Trail but is also helping to make the local Anchascocha Community visited en route self-sufficient.

New for 2015 – 2016

Ladakh and Kashmir, Northern India

7th June 2015 is the first departure of Dragoman’s new 21 Ladakh trip, Delhi to Delhi, priced from £972 per person plus kitty of US$610 / £376). Set deep in the Indian Himalayas on the Western edge of the Tibetan plateau, Ladakh, or ‘Little Tibet’ as it is known, is one of the highest places on earth. Relax in Manali, visit serene Buddhist monasteries and palaces in Leh and drive to the remote and rugged Nubra valley. There’s also time spent relaxing on the houseboats on Dal Lake, Srinigar, Kashmir, before heading back to Delhi.

Rainbow Mountains, Western China

One of the most unusual tourist draws on the planet, the Rainbow Mountains in Western China are China’s own version of the Grand Canyon. Located in the Danxia scenic area in Gansu province, north-west China, the candy-striped mountains are a unique, hilly landform of sandstone that has been eroded to create unusual rock formations causing the mountains to appear blue, yellow, orange and red . Although Chinese tourists flood to see them every year, they remain a ‘best kept secret’ for western travellers, despite UNESCO listing them as a new World Heritage Site.

Now, all of the 71 Dragoman trips which pass through Kashgar, Western China, now include a visit to the Rainbow Mountains, the shortest being the 22 day Kashgar – Xi’an trip, from £1,340 per person, kitty from US$600 (£378)

Andaman Coast, Burma

New, too, is a visit to Burma’s pristine beaches on the Andaman coast, a result of the operators splitting its original 28 day Kunming to Bangkok via Burma trip into two sections.

Visitors to Burma now have the option of taking an action packed 9 day trip between Yangon to Bangkok (from £666 per person, kitty of US$270 / £166), or the longer, 22 day Kunming to Yangon trip (from £1629 per person, kitty of US$600 / £370).

Linking Europe to South East Asia and beyond

And, as the only operator to offer the entire Silk Route from Istanbul to Beijing the operator now includes Burma as an option en route, the 127 day Istanbul to Bangkok via Burma ,(£7,236 per person, kitty of US$4,220 / £2,600) in essence, linking Europe to South East Asia and beyond.

New and refurbished fleet

Dragoman’s new and newly refurbished fleet of 30 Mercedes Benz 4WD trucks has also hit the road.

For bookings, visit Dragoman at www.dragoman.com  or call T. 01728 861133


Bunk Campers Offers Early Booking Incentive For 2015 Campervan Hire

October 22, 2014 on 7:32 am | In Adventure Travel, London, Road Trips, Scotland, United Kingdom, Wales | Comments Off



Outdoorplay.com - Free Kayak ShippingCampervan holidays in the UK are making a comeback and UK & Ireland campervan rental company Bunk Campers are incentivizing travellers who are keen to book early for 2015.

Visitors booking their campervan hire for 2015 with Bunk Campers before 30 November 2014 will benefit from a 5% early booking discount in additional to any long stay discounts they qualify for.

Early booking affords visitors the luxury of their requested dates, pick up location and vehicle. Bunk Campers offer a choice of 6 fully equipped camper types to suit all tastes and budgets and 5 pick-up locations nationwide, meaning visitors can create a 2015 itinerary that suits their holiday requirements.

Bunk Campers has picked the top 5 must-see attractions visitors can experience during their time touring the UK or Ireland by campervan in 2015:

1. Tour the Wild Atlantic Way – A 2500KM long tourism trail along Ireland’s unspoilt coastline, the Wild Atlantic Way stretches from Cork to Donegal and offers visitors unpatrolled access to cliffs, beaches and tourist attractions.

2. Catch a music festival – No need to worry about nasty festival toilets or tents collapsing in the rain, take a Bunk Camper to a music festival. With a dry, warm space to rest your head and cooking facilities on board, there is more time to sit back, relax and enjoy the music.

3. Drop in on the Highland games – Experience Scotland’s famous games in all their glory! Taking place throughout the summer and spread across the country, a campervan provides the transport and accommodation to attend as many events as you wish.

4. Relax at the Lake District – With a campervan, you have the freedom and flexibility to get away from the humdrum of city life and delve into nature. The Lake District is the ideal place to switch off and get back to nature with walking, cycling and boat hire all available in the National Park.

5. Get outdoors and active at the beaches in Cornwall – Surf, sunset and miles of endless beaches! Spend your days in the water before returning to your camper for a hot shower and warm cup of tea.

On board facilities when you hire a Bunk Camper include: beds, gas hob for cooking, sink, fridge/freezer, dining table, shower, toilet, heating and electricity.

2015 bookings can now be made through Bunk Campers website. For more information, please visit www.bunkcampers.com

About Bunk Campers

Bunk Campers are one of the UK & Ireland’s largest campervan rental companies with depots in London Gatwick, Edinburgh, Glasgow, Belfast and Dublin.


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