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Tuesday, 31 August 2010

Legal Battle Looms for Pandaw over Ganges Cruises

Pandaw River Cruises is heading to the Indian courts claiming an Indian company, Pandaw India, has stolen its river ship.

There was confusion last week when Pandaw India began offering cruises on the Ganges on board RV Bengal Pandaw, formerly named Pandaw IV, beginning in September this year.

Read full story

Free flight for Russian river cruise

New brochure: APT Russian River Cruising 2011

Deal – Free return flights to Russia on pre-Nov 30 bookings

APT is offering free return flights to Russia for booking a 12-day river cruise next year.

The deal applies to the 12-day Russian Waterways cruise, for example, which is priced from $5495 per person twin share. That includes cruising, shore excursions and entertainment, airport transfers and tipping, 32 meals on board, wine with lunch and dinner, Russian language lessons, selected Moscow and St Petersburg highlights and ballet performance in St Petersburg.

Cruising is on the newly-rebuilt 212-passenger river ship ms Amakatarina which boasts four decks and two restaurants. It cruises along the Volga, Svir and Neva rivers, exploring the forested islands, lakes and rural Russia.

The deal applies to bookings made before November 30 and requires the traveller to pay airfare taxes of approximately $700.

Contact: call 1300 229 804, visit www.aptouring.com.au or see you travel agent


Orion 2010 limited offer - No single supplement for sole occupancy

In response to enquiries from potential solo travellers, Orion Expedition Cruises has announced that they will waive the single supplement surcharge applied on all Orion sailings from 16th September to 21st December 2010 inclusive. 5 cabins will be reserved for sole occupancy on each voyage in order that single travellers will be able to pay the per person fare with no added supplement.

This offer applies to a range of destinations including the Kimberley, Forgotten Islands, Papua New Guinea, Great Barrier Reef, Australian East Coast, Tasmania, New Zealand Sub-Antarctic and New Zealand Fiordland itineraries.

Voyage duration varies from 7 to 13 nights with fares from $5,200 (7 nights) for a Category B Ocean view Stateroom. Fare includes accommodation, meals, onboard lectures, inclusive shore expeditions, port taxes and gratuities.

Note: No sole occupancy surcharge for new bookings on all sailings from 16th September to 21st December 2010 inclusive. Subject to availability. Not combinable with any other promotion or other savings other than Pathways (past guest) savings.

Further information on all Orion Expedition Cruises can be obtained by visiting the website www.orionexpeditions.com

To discuss your travel needs or to obtain a brochure please call Orion Expedition Cruises: 61-2 9033 8777 (Sydney callers) 1300 361 012 (regional and interstate) or see your travel agent. Email: info@orionexpeditions.com.au

Stranded Arctic cruise passengers head home

Passengers were headed home after the MV Clipper Adventurer ran aground on a voyage from Port Epworth to Kugluktuk, Nunavut. (Photo: Adventure Canada)
Passengers trapped aboard a cruise ship bound for the Northwest Passage were returning home Monday, three days after their vessel ran aground on an uncharted rock off the Nunavut coast.

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Cruise Weekly: Piscos and Piranhas

Cruise Weekly 31 August 2010 (Download PDF)


Location: S 4 deg 38', W 73 deg 45', Maraňon River, Peru
Vessel: MV Aqua, 400 GRT, 24 passengers.

The 7000km long Amazon River is full of fish – more species than the entire Atlantic I'm told – including that most bizarre of voracious feeders, the piranha. Here in the wide flat plains south of the Peruvian outpost of Iquitos in the headwaters of the world's largest and most famous river system, locals live by the bounty it provides. The enormous catfish, many over a metre long are the prize catch. 500 species alone dwell in the deep and turbid waters including several with nasty spines waiting to inflict a painful wound. But it's these tiny terrors, the piranha, that have come to typify the wild and savage land of the Amazon basin first sailed by a European, Spaniard Francisco de Orellana, in 1542

We're fishing for these little beasts on one of the thousand or so tributaries that feed the main river stream. Simple tackle here, just a piece of line tied to a slender stick with a hook and chunk of last night's tenderloin. “Stir the water with your stick and then drop in the bait,” Victor, my guide tells me. The vibration attracts them – and he's not kidding. In seconds, the line is shuddering from the attack of tiny razor-sharp teeth and it takes several applications of prime Argentinean beef before one is brought flapping and snapping into the launch. “Ola!,” cries Victor, “this is the big boy!” Carefully he holds the cranky critter, a short-nosed red belly variety, for us to see and reveals the telltale rows of serrated teeth that can reduce an entire animal to bones in just a matter of minutes.

Piranha fishing is just one of the activities offered aboard MV Aqua, a high-end river river cruiser with just 12 cabins, sorry, suites, catering to 24 well-healed adventurers wanting to sample the amazingly complex and wild lands of Amazonia. Our complement includes Spanish, Canadians, Australians, Americans and a local couple. Built in 2007, MV Aqua operates from the remote port of Iquitos in the NE corner of Peru, primarily on the Yarapa and Yanayacu Rivers immersing travellers, so-to-speak, in the mind-boggling diversity of the Amazon biosphere. Unlike former British soldier, Capt Ed Stafford, who walked its length in 859 days recently, we'll be here for just seven, and shorter itineraries of just three and four are offered too. The schedule to come includes the Pacaya Samiria Reserve with its abundant wildlife, village visits, jungle treks and more.

For bookings or further information, contact Scenic Tours (www.scenictours.com.au) on 1300 723 642

LAN Airlines flies six times weekly from Sydney to Santiago, Chile, and offers service to over 50 destinations in 10 South-American countries. From Santiago, LAN flies daily to Lima, Peru, and on to Iquitos. For more information visit www.lan.com or call 1800 221 572.

More info on Peru www.peru.info

 


Friday, 27 August 2010

Orion Australian Geographic photographic expedition to Papua New Guinea

This 11 night voyage, departing Cairns, provides opportunities to test and develop photographic skills – historic World War II sites, tropical islands, exotic bird and marine life, primitive artworks, active volcanoes, the colonial atmosphere of Madang and a rare visit to a remote village near the Sepik River.

In association with Better Photography magazine and the Australian Geographic Society, and under the knowledgeable guidance of internationally recognised photographer Nick Rains and Grand Master of Photography Peter Eastwood, this Orion Expedition Cruises' April 2011 Papua New Guinea voyage is designed to appeal to photographers of all levels – while not forgetting their partners (whose interest in the finer points of photography is often less enthusiastic!).

Pre-shoot workshops onboard will include professional advice and instruction on photographing seascapes, portrait skills, lighting, detailed macro flora and fauna, and instruction on editing-software to optimise final images.

Orion's Australian Geographic PNG photo expedition departs 3 April 2011. Fares, including accommodation, all meals, inclusive shore excursions and photographic workshops commence from $8,995 per person for an Ocean View Category B Stateroom.

Find out more: Register for one of the information presentations in October to learn more about this Photographic Expedition. Sydney / 25 October; Melbourne / 27 October; Brisbane / 28 October 2010.

Further information can be obtained from the website www.orionexpeditions.com Orion Expedition Cruises 1300 361 012 or see your travel agent.
Email: info@orionexpeditions.com.au

Monday, 23 August 2010

Coral Princess Cruises' Reef and Rainforest Package Combines Top Tropical Experiences

Thala Beach Lodge
Coral Princess Cruises, Orpheus Island Resort and Thala Beach Lodge have put together three of the top tropical experiences in Australia in a reef and rainforest package that includes exploring remote coral cays and snorkelling in the clear waters of the Great Barrier Reef on a Coral Princess cruise; an indulgent resort stay on Orpheus Island; and relaxing amid World Heritage rainforest at Thala Beach Lodge.

Coral Princess Cruises – the family-owned and eco-accredited business that pioneered small ship cruising on the Barrier Reef – operates three-night voyages between Cairns and Townsville that reach remote islands and reefs that are normally inaccessible to tourists.

Aboard the purpose-built, 50-passenger Coral Princess, a marine biologist unravels the fascinating complexity of the coral reef ecosystem during daily snorkelling and glass bottom boat excursions. Guests can venture ashore on deserted coral cays and at historic sites and there is even a BBQ on Coral Princess’s own private island – Pelorus Island – with no-one in sight but fellow passengers.

Coral Princess Cruises
The cruise shows off some of the world’s best snorkelling, swimming and coral viewing sites, such as Thetford and Sudbury Reefs; visits Dunk Island and cruises the Hinchinbrook Channel. The package includes a complimentary introductory SCUBA diving experience, while experienced divers can make daily dives from the ship or from shore.
The cruise can be combined with stays at Orpheus Island and Thala Beach Lodge.

A three-night stay on Orpheus Island begins with a scenic flight transfer over the reef from Townsville. The focus at Orpheus’s resort is on the island’s spectacular natural beauty, the secluded beaches – and on pampering guests with fine food and luxurious relaxation. The package offers unlimited use of the resort’s facilities, including motorised dinghies, catamarans, snorkelling equipment, fishing gear, gymnasium, tennis court and selected interpretive activities.

Thala Lodge’s deluxe bungalows are nestled in the rainforest canopy atop a headland that affords spectacular views over the rainforest, untouched coastline and ocean. Rainforest denizens including possums, sugar gliders, butterflies and myriad bird species can be readily seen from the lodge’s verandahs and on guided nature walks. The package includes a two-night stay, evening presentations by local specialists and star gazing from the lodge’s specially designed observatory.

The seven-night package is available year-round. The package costs from $5259 per person, twin share and includes accommodation, all meals, transfers and selected activities.

For further information contact Coral Princess Cruises on 1800 079 545 or visit www.coralprincess.com.au

Saturday, 21 August 2010

Avid Cruiser: All Discovery Cruising

On August 7, 2010, Avid Cruiser, Ralph Grizzle, boards the MV Discovery for a report on the ship and on the All Discovery Cruising program on an Iceland & Greenland cruise.

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Tuesday, 17 August 2010

Expedition Cruising: PNG Deal. Free flight and accommodation.

Papua New Guinea – Special Offer

Book our 13-day Rabaul to Cairns voyage departing November 15, 2010, and you will receive 1 night pre & post accommodation for FREE at the SEBEL CAIRNS. Plus FREE chartered jet aircraft flight Cairns to Rabaul, Rabaul city tour and transfers. Conditions apply.

Full Details

Cruceros Australis to Unveil Stella Australis in December

Adventure cruise specialist Cruceros Australis will unveil a new ship, the 210-passenger Stella Australis, in December. The Stella will have 100 177-square-foot cabins and three lounges -- the Sky Lounge, the Darwin Lounge and the Yamana Lounge -- equipped with audio-visual equipment for educational presentations throughout the voyage. There is also a reception area, a dining room and an exercise room. Cabin highlights include picture windows, independent climate controls, bathrooms and a satellite phone.

Cruceros Australis also operates the Via Australis and the Mare Australis. Both the Via, built in 2005, and the Mare, built in 2002, have 64 cabins, each with windows. The five decks of both ships include two lounges and a dining room.

Cruceros Australis explores the southernmost regions of South America including Patagonia, Tierra del Fuego and Cape Horn. Additional highlights include Ainsworth Bay and Glacier Alley, as well as small group excursions such as a trip to Magdalena Island to see the Magellanic penguins. Expedition leaders present daily lectures in both English and Spanish to complement the educational component of the expeditions. The talks take place both on the ship and on land during excursions.

For more information visit www.australis.com

Le Ponant to Offer Voyages Along Ancient Trading Routes

Le Ponant is a 290-foot sailing yacht that
accommodates 64 guests in 32 outside staterooms
Compagnie du Ponant’s Le Ponant will offer 17 voyages this winter and spring that follow ancient trading routes, calling at ports such as Aqaba, Sharm el Sheikh, Muscat, Khasab, Doha, Abu Dhabi, Mumbai, Kochi, Malé, Phuket and Penang. From Dec. 4 to April 4, the yacht will sail through Arabia, around the Maldives and India and on to Southeast Asia.

Le Ponant is a 290-foot sailing yacht that accommodates 64 guests in 32 outside staterooms. It has two restaurants, two lounges, a library and a 4,300-square-foot deck. The ship has 16,000 feet of sails.

Kicking off its winter season on Dec. 4, Le Ponant’s six-night “Jordan & Egypt: Sacred Lands of the Red Sea” starts from Alexandria and transits the Suez Canal on its way to Aqaba. The five-night “Ocean Voyage” from Muscat to Kochi will depart Dec. 23, Jan. 18, Feb. 18 and March 24.

The “India and the Maldives: Spices and Silver Sand” cruise, which departs Dec. 28 and March 10, calls at two ports in India and four islands in the “Pearl of the Indian Ocean” archipelago. Four seven-night Malé roundtrip voyages, “Atolls of the Maldives: Natural Aquariums and Blue Lagoons,” depart Jan. 4, Jan. 11, Feb. 24 and March 3. Optional dive packages featuring eight to 10 dives are available for PADI-certified divers.

The eight-night “Thailand and Malaysia: Islands and Marine Treasures” cruises are roundtrip from Phuket and depart Jan. 25, Feb. 2 and Feb. 10. Le Ponant sails the Andaman Sea visiting Thailand’s Butang, Similian and Ko Phi Phi Islands and Malaysia’s Langkawi archipelago and Penang.

High points of the seven-night “Saris, Temples, and Lagoons,” which departs March 17, include Kochi, Trivandrum and New Mangalore. The cruise continues to Goa and ends in Mumbai. In making its way back to the Mediterranean, Le Ponant follows the old Arab trading route. The seven-night “Lands of Honey and Incense” itinerary, which departs March 28 and April 4, sails between Muscat and Dubai.

Further information: www.ponant.com

Thursday, 12 August 2010

Aurora Expeditions launches their brand new Russian Coast 2011 voyages

Adventure travel company, Aurora Expeditions, have launched their 2011 Russian Coast brochure featuring five Russian itineraries, including three inaugural expeditions – The Secrets of the White Sea, Voyage to the End of the Earth, featuring the remote Franz Josef Land and most incredible of all, a 26-day adventure Across the North East Passage from European Russian to the Far East.

All Russian voyages will set sail on Aurora Expeditions brand new ship the Akademik Shokalskiy – sister ship to their famed Polar Pioneer. This ice-strengthened research ship was built in Finland in 1982. Fully refurbished in 2008, the ship provides accommodation for a maximum of 54 passengers as well as two dining rooms, lounge bar, lecture theatre, sauna and an ‘Open Bridge’ policy.

“Aurora Expeditions is committed to taking our passengers to the heart of nature. Our new Russian program delivers a unique combination of history and culture set against a backdrop of incredible natural beauty and wilderness”, said Lisa Bolton, CEO Aurora Expeditions.

“These are not conventional cruises, they are expeditions to some of the most remote and least visited destinations on the planet, and I am delighted to be able to deliver them to our passengers with the care and dedication that Aurora Expeditions is famous for.”

Aurora Expeditions continue their Russian odyssey, with two itineraries returning to the Russian Far East - The Bering Sea Explorer, which will discover the volcano-rich Kamchatka Peninsula and the grand finale – The Ring of Fire, exploring the magnificent Kuril Islands.

Aurora Expeditions’ Russian Arctic and Far East voyages are staffed by premium expedition leaders, naturalists, historians and geologists and the Russian crew are keen to show off their country’s natural beauty – delivering some of the finest expedition cruises in Russia. Howard Whelan, the expedition leader on three of the voyages has a passion for exploration, which has seen him lead expeditions to some of the planet’s most remote regions, including Antarctica, the Amazon, Galapagos Islands, and the Russian Far East. He spent three months in Russia researching an article for Outside magazine, travelling from the Kola Peninsula, across Siberia to Kamchatka.

“Each landing brings a sense of wildness or intrigue. There is abundant wildlife, incredible seabird rookeries, exotic cultures and the thrill of investigating abandoned military or weather outposts. The intensity of experience and sense of discovery reminds me of our first voyages to Antarctica nearly two decades ago”, said Howard Whelan, Expedition Leader, Aurora Expeditions.

An expedition cruise to this historic-clad nation really is an adventure of a lifetime. Join us on our Russian voyages and help unlock the secrets of the remote Russian Coast.

GET THIS BROCHURE MAILED TO YOU

or for further information contact Aurora Expeditions on 02 9252 1033 or visit www.auroraexpeditions.com.au. Become a fan at www.facebook.com/auroraex.

Wednesday, 11 August 2010

Hapag-Lloyd Special: Save $3000

Special for Australian and New Zealand customers only.


The luxurious expedition ship, MS Bremen, departs Bali 03 May 11, arriving Ho Chi Minh City 17th May

En route passengers see the dragons on Komodo, visit the Temples of Borobodur, the colonial architecture of Kuching, longhouses in Sarawak and the Orang Utangs plus so many other sites. As usual, there are five lecturers on board enriching this diverse experience.

Pay category 1 AU$6,078 - sail in Cat 4

Contact Landmark Travel


Heritage Expeditions Announce New Voyages

One of Heritage Expeditions highlighted new 2011 Russia voyages we will release this month at the UK’s premier Birdfair is our 'Bering's Wake: In search of the Spoon-billed Sandpiper' in partnership with BirdLife International.

This expedition is as unique as the First Kamchatka Expedition of 1725 – 1730, which was led by Danish explorer Commander Vitus Bering. Like his, our expedition will depart from Petropavlovsk-Kamchatskiy, sailing ‘north by north east’ to discover wildlife and a wilderness that few people have seen or experienced. It is a land of extremes and myriad environments including snow-capped active volcanoes, geothermal regions, vast forests, extensive tundra, uninhabited islands and rich oceans. Every day we will search for the best wildlife experiences, and there will be many, but we want to find one bird in particular - the extremely rare Spoon-billed Sandpiper (Eurynorhynchus pygmeus). This bird is classified as ‘critically endangered’ and its only known breeding ground is in northern Kamchatka and Chukotka – the area that we will be visiting. Recent field studies suggest that the global population is much lower than previously thought, possibly fewer than 320 breeding pairs and declining. Joining us on this expedition will be members of BirdLife International’s Spoon-billed Sandpiper Recovery Team.

Many of our past guests have asked "When will Rodney Russ and crew sail an expedition to the South Indian Ocean again?", well its been 10 years in the waiting but the answer is Mid-November 2012.

The 'Remote Islands of the South Indian Ocean' expedition is possibly one of the last true expedition cruises left on the globe. Very, very few expeditions ever venture into these latitudes. It is a vast expanse of ocean broken by only five relatively small islands, Crozet, Heard, Kerguelen, St Paul and Amsterdam. All of the islands except Heard are French territories, their claim dating to the expeditions of Yves Joseph de Kerguelen-Tremarec. Heard Island is Australian territory, it is Australia’s only active volcano and Big Ben the mountain that dominates the island is Australia’s highest peak. The legacy of whaling and sealing enterprises can be seen in the form of introduced plants and animals, with some islands more modified than others. Probably due to its geographical position, south of the Antarctic convergence, Heard Island escaped the ravages of these introductions and is the most pristine. The French maintain scientific bases on Crozet, Kergulen and Amsterdam Islands. All of these islands are home to thousands of seabirds and marine mammals. The highlights include the rare Amsterdam (Wandering) Albatross, the huge colonies of Indian Yellow-nosed Albatross, and Mosley’s Rockhopper Penguin. Our previous expedition to the South Indian Ocean was in November 2002 and it was a huge success with landings at all of the Islands, we look forward to a similar voyage of exploration ten years on.

  • Heritage Expeditions New Zealand Ltd
  • Antarctic House, 53B Montreal Street, PO Box 7218 , Christchurch , New Zealand
  • Free Phone: 0800 262 8873 (within NZ) Phone: +64 3 365 3500
  • Fax: +64 3 365 1300 Email: info@heritage-expeditions.com

GET THE BROCHURE NOW

Tuesday, 10 August 2010

Expedition cruising: Who started all this then?


Expedition and adventure cruising is firmly entrenched in the modern travel landscape. Every year there are new vessels, new itineraries, new destinations and new travellers converted to the small ship experience. But where did it all begin? Several companies claim firsts here and there, but there can be only one true ‘first’.

Many scholars will tell you the first private adventurer was the 16th Century Italian, Antonio Pigafetta, who joined Magellen on his voyage to the Indies. Of 240 men who began the 3-year odyssey, he was one of only 18 survivors – and he wrote a book.

Ernest Shackleton’s famous shipwreck, the Endurance, was originally built as a tourist ship for Arctic hunting parties. Ernest snapped it up when the builders went broke. The Germans too, to this day intrepid and stylish adventurers, began cruises to exotic locations aboard the 13,000 ton Monte Cervantes in 1928. The enterprise was risky and after one dramatic Arctic rescue, the beautiful vessel struck rocks in the treacherous Beagle Channel and sank after leaving Ushuaia. All but Captain Theodor Dreyer were saved.

However the modern era of commercial expedition cruising belongs to the efforts of one man, Lars-Eric Lindblad. Born in Sweden in 1927, Lindblad immigrated to the United States in 1951 and later became an American citizen. His company, Lindblad Travel, began tours to some of the most out-of-the-way, exotic and forbidden lands in the world. His initial offerings included the Galapagos Islands, Easter Island, the Amazon, Papua New Guinea, China and Bhutan. His first charter to Antarctica was with an Argentinean Navy vessel, MS Lapataia, in 1965 with 56 passengers.

Lindblad believed that intelligent travel was a powerful force for peace and international understanding. He ignored US Government trade sanctions to countries like Cambodia and Vietnam, but earned the wrath of the administration and was levied with heavy penalties for doing so. These fines led to the collapse of his company in 1989 although the embargoes to both countries were lifted soon after.

When interviewed by the NY Times when the penalties were levied, Lindblad said he intentionally violated the sanctions. "I would do it again," he said. "Travel in my opinion is not ordinary trade. Travel is a way of communication. To embargo travel is like burning books or imprisoning journalists."

He was also an ardent conservationist and was strident in his efforts to educate travellers on the importance of preserving the natural environment.

“All the animals and land throughout the planet are held in trust by us. We have no right to destroy or change this heritage so that it becomes unrecognizable. We have a duty to pass the planet along to future generations in as unspoiled a way as possible. This requires intelligence, foresight, understanding and creative effort.” he wrote in his 1984 biography, Passport to Anywhere.

Lindblad died suddenly of a heart attack in 1994 when holidaying in Sweden. His son, Sven-Olof, who had travelled extensively with his father, continued the legacy and now operates the prestigious company Lindlad Expeditions, based in New York City.

Read more about Lindblad Expeditions at their site: www.expeditions.com

Monday, 9 August 2010

Art in Antarctica

Polar cruise operator One Ocean Expeditions (www.oneoceanexpeditions.com) takes popular polar photographer Daisy Gilardini and her partner, watercolour artist David McEown, to Antarctica.

In November and December this year, polar photographer Daisy Gilardini and watercolour artist David McEown will sail to the Antarctic Peninsula on board the comfortable, ice-strengthened 89-passenger Marina Svetaeva. During the voyage Daisy and David will give talks, multi-media presentations and practical workshops on photography and art and, when landing on the Antarctic Peninsula and surrounding islands, they will be available to help guests with sketching, camera settings and other creative queries.

The sailing dates for the Antarctic Peninsula Adventure are 28 November, 8 and 18 December 2010. All three voyages start and end in Ushuaia, Argentina. Passengers who choose to sail on the 8 December 2010 departure will be entitled to a great offer – the best available cabin at the time of booking for just US$6590 per person. They could even find themselves in a Shackleton Suite (subject to availability) with a normal published price of US$8590 per person; an enormous saving of US$2000 per person.

For experienced and enthusiastic novice photographers alike, Daisy Gilardini (www.daisygilardini.com) is the perfect companion and instructor for a polar voyage. She will work with guests to improve their photography; encourage them to look at scenes and events in a different way in order to capture them digitally and will share her career’s experiences while on excursions.

Daisy has more than a decade of polar experience having joined 13 expeditions to Antarctica and 23 to the Arctic. Many of these expeditions have been on comfortable vessels similar to the Marina Svetaeva, although in 2005 she chose to ski all the way to the North Pole as part of a Russian expedition. Daisy’s images have been published in many well-known publications such as National Geographic, Smithsonian, BBC Wildlife, Audubon and the Daily Telegraph. In April 2010, Daisy was a judge for BBC Wildlife Photographer of the Year.

For Daisy Gilardini photography means extreme adventure, “being a nature and animal lover I always choose remote destinations. The mystery of these wild places, the force of nature and isolation from civilization, combined with extreme adventure, are simply irresistible for me. My photographs come from the heart. I love the Natural World and the joy that being there brings. This passion has grown into a lifelong commitment to educate and inspire others with the hope to help conserve our fragile Planet.”

Polar landscape water colourist, David McEown (www.artistjourneys.com) is well travelled in the polar regions having circumnavigated both the Arctic and Antarctica. Through the creative act of painting he witnesses and records a beautiful, yet fragile and rapidly changing, polar world. David loves to connect with the landscape and paint on location but, as a talented speaker and performer, he is also keen to share his art through teaching.

Marina Svetaeva
The Marina Sveteava has a multimedia download studio with computers and cables for downloading images, as well as numbered hard-drives for storage until guests are ready to back up to their own media device.

The price for the 10-night voyages (28 November & 18 December) starts at US$7590 per person sharing a twin cabin including accommodation, food and excursions during the voyage. The special price on the 8 December voyage is US$6950 per person for the best available cabin at the time of booking. Flights to/from Ushuaia, Argentina where passengers embark the Marina Svetaeva are not included in the price. There is no additional charge for the photography and art workshops with Daisy Gilardini and David McEown.

About One Ocean Expeditions

One Ocean Expeditions is an innovative, high-quality expedition cruise company offering comfortable, nature-based tours to the Arctic and Antarctica. Their cruises focus on people, exceptional customer service and environmental values. Featuring wildlife, photography and adventure, as well as their unique Adventure Concierges, their polar voyages will open eyes like never before.

For information on One Ocean voyages, contact Active Travel

Sunday, 8 August 2010

APT to build Mekong River cruise ship

source: Travel Daily - Cruise Weekly

APT expands in Indochina

APT today confirmed that it will build its own cruise ship for the Mekong River in Indochina, in partnership with Amawaterways.

The new vessel, to be called the ms Amalotus, is due for launch in September 2011 and will incorporate similar features to those available in APT's European vessels including its "revolutionary twin balconies".

The 124-passenger Amalotus will operate week-long voyages between Ho Chi Minh City and Siem Reap with APT's packages also featuring fully inclusive touring, all meals, tipping and alcoholic beverages.

Details of the expansion were released today at the Travelscene American Express National Consultant Conference in Cairns, with the move confirming a further ramp-up in APT's Indochina offerings.

More information in this week's issues of Travel Daily and Cruise Weekly.

Friday, 6 August 2010

Cruise West Announces New Wild Alaska Seafari

Whales and Otters and Bears, Oh My!

Cruise West, a global leader in small-ship explorations, today announced a new 5-night itinerary, Wild Alaska Seafari, dedicated to showcasing Alaska's wildlife like never before.

 "We are continually looking for new and innovative ways to explore this beautiful land," shared Dick West, Cruise West's Chairman and Managing Director. "Unlike the big ships, our captains have always had the liberty to take small 'detours' to ensure that guests are able to experience wildlife the way it should be enjoyed – up-close and personal. We have extended that philosophy into an adventure of a lifetime with Wild Alaska Seafari."

Since its inception, nearly 64 years ago, Cruise West has delivered an authentic and genuine exploration experience. Company founder, Chuck West, practically invented Alaska tourism, leading him to be called "Mr. Alaska" by his contemporaries. His dream of taking adventurous travelers up-close to Alaska took root in his days as a bush pilot. After a period of offering sightseeing and flightseeing tours, he was soon showing his guests Alaska's interior and pristine waterways on both land tours and the first small-ship cruises. Today, his legacy of adventure and hospitality lives on in this second generation, family-owned company, operated by his son, Dick West.

"Alaska is core to our business and to our company culture," commented Dietmar Wertanzl, Cruise West's President and CEO. "It is often a guests' first experience with Cruise West and it provides a perfect backdrop to showcase the benefits of small-ship cruising. Although I have sailed in Alaska several times, I am excited about experiencing this new itinerary alongside our guests."

The new Wild Alaska Seafari was designed to provide guests with the experience closest to a true explorer.  While the major ports and places have been identified, the sequence and timing will be determined by Mother Nature and the captain of the Spirit of Alaska. The captain will have the authority to adapt the timing to ensure that guests experience each sight at its most spectacular. On select journeys, there will be professional photographers onboard, for those guests who would like guidance on how to capture the "ultimate shots" of these magical locations.

Highlights:

·         Programming has been designed for the more active traveler, so inflatable raft excursions have been planned during the day and evening, to maximize the adventure experience.

·         Routes will be carefully timed to ensure that the ships' location is designed for the best possible light, a photographer's dream.

·         Guests will visit Pelican, a town that is only accessible by ship. This small fishing village is a quiet boardwalk experience with no roads.

·         Guests will enjoy a journey to the West Chichagof-Yakobi Wilderness, a pristine wonderland.

·         The Icy Strait represents more than 13 unique shore opportunities along the more than 100 miles of coastline. Each cruise experience will differ depending on the whims of the wildlife and the captain's instincts for the best guest experience.

·         Overnight anchorages will highlight 'Quiet Places of Solitude' and allow guests to reflect onboard, away from the glitz and glamour of the city.

·         Pre-night package includes a presentation by local photographers and an early morning photo shoot at stunning Eagle Beach.

Wild Alaska Seafari can be combined with an optional 5-night land tour within Denali National Park and Preserve, home to Mount McKinley, North America's largest mountain. The Denali experience provides guests with a plethora of choices to customize their experience, including a visit to the home and kennel of Mary Shields, the first woman to run the Iditarod, a Tundra Wilderness Tour of spectacular landscapes, and optional excursions like rafting or flightseeing.

In addition, Cruise West will continue to offer the following itineraries in 2011. For each itinerary, Cruise West provides an all-inclusive experience that includes a shore excursion in every port.

·         Alaska's Inside Passage – 7 nights, roundtrip from Juneau

·         Gold Rush Inside Passage – 10 or 11 night adventures sailing from Seattle to Juneau (or reverse)

·         Glacier Bay Highlights- 4 nights, roundtrip from Juneau

·         Glaciers of Prince William Sound – 4 nights, roundtrip from Anchorage

Across all of their Alaska itineraries, guests may choose from multiple departure dates with prices starting at $1,299 before any special offers. The Wild Alaska Seafari dates include June 1, 6, 11, 16, 21, 26, 2011, July 1, 6, 11, 16, 21, 26, 31, 2011, and August 5, 10, 15, 20, 25, 2011. Guests can save $700 per person by paying in full by September 24, 2010.  For further details, visit www.CruiseWest.com, call 800-296-8307, or contact a travel professional.