Monday 30 June 2014

G Adventures Expands Sailing Line-up


New destinations include Turkey, British Virgin Islands and Cuba

G Adventures, the world’s largest adventure tour company, has today announced it will be expanding its sailing itineraries in 2014/15 to include Turkey, British Virgin Islands and Cuba. The growth in sailing itineraries comes after the success of G Adventures’ previous sailing programs which have experienced extraordinary demand.

G Adventures’ sailing trips are among the itineraries that receive the highest number of repeat travellers and since 2004, the adventure tour company’s sailing program has quadrupled in size, now with several itineraries in six countries.

Belinda Ward, Duchess of Delegation for G Adventures Australia and New Zealand, is eager to offer new destinations to travellers seeking flexible sailing itineraries that are low cost high value experiences with fully licensed, knowledgeable skippers.

“Sailing allows travellers to see parts of the world they wouldn’t necessarily have access to by land, and gives a totally new and exciting perspective,” she said. “Adding new destinations to our programs offers travellers even more places to see and explore from the comfort and convenience of our yachts and catamarans.”

“Travellers on our small-ship sailing itineraries appreciate the ease of having to unpack only once while relaxing at night with boats anchored in the most beautiful harbours – different every night,” Ward added. “During the day travellers can still be active and independent– there are plenty of opportunities to shop in local markets, savour local cuisine and explore the waters by snorkelling, swimming or kayaking.”

Sailing in the British Virgin Islands marks the first Caribbean tour for G Adventures. The operator also offers sailing trips in the Greek Islands, Thailand and Croatia, a destination that launched last year and nearly sold out. All itineraries range in length between four and 15 days. Yachts and catamarans carry a maximum of eight or 14 travellers.

Aspiring sailors can learn the ropes, receive some pointers from the expert skippers and even take the wheel themselves.

All trips are guaranteed to depart. Itineraries include:

Sailing The British Virgin Islands – Tortola to Tortola. – Sail on a catamaran through the beautiful turquoise waters of the British Virgin Islands, stop to snorkel in deep caves, anchor and jump aboard a floating bar and tour around islands by car or go for a hike. Relax in the evenings and enjoy the sunset and the Caribbean sounds. Seven days and priced from $1,749*.

Sailing Turkey – Bodrum to Fethiye – Discover tiny villages along the Turkish coastline, secluded islands and deserted beaches, swim in clear turquoise waters, learn to sail on a state-of-the-art catamaran, marvel at the ancient rock tombs in Dalyan and hike through ancient ruins, sail into the ancient port of Fethiye. 10 days and priced from $1,799*.

Sailing Cuba – Havana to Havana - Sail on a catamaran through the beautiful turquoise waters of the Canarreos Archipelago, stop to snorkel or share a drink with friendly locals, while enjoying the slow pace of life in the islands. Eight days and priced from $1,949*.

For more information or to book, call 1300 796 618 or visit

Aurora Expeditions' Photography Guide Awarded 2014 Victorian AIPP EPSON 'Photographer of the Year'


Aurora Expeditions' are proud to announce that their resident Polar Photography Guide, Joshua Holko, has been awarded the 2014 Victorian Australian Institute of Professional Photography (AIPP) EPSON 'Photographer of the Year' for his stunning photograph taken in Antarctica during his November 2013 expedition on board the company's small expedition vessel, Polar Pioneer.

With an image featuring Aurora Expeditions' small expedition ship, Polar Pioneer, and a vast tabular iceberg, Joshua, a Moab Master and full-time professional landscape, nature and wilderness photographer and teacher, also won the award's 'Science, Environment and Nature Photographer of the Year' and 'Creative Award of the Year'.

“It's a great honour to have been named the 2014 Victorian AIPP EPSON 'Photographer of the Year'. My love and passion for photography is only heightened by the fact that I get to team my profession with visiting some of the most amazing places on earth. Antarctica is truly one of the most photogenic places I have ever visited.” says Joshua.

Joshua will be joining Aurora Expeditions 'Spirit of Antarctica' expedition in December this year and is inviting budding photographers to join him on board to discover the art of professional photography. The 12-day voyage will allow passengers to spend time honing their photography skills amongst the ice and wildlife of Antarctica alongside one of Australia's most inspiring photographers.

Delivering Canon and AIPP-accredited workshops, Joshua will run an exclusive and complimentary on board photography program that is open to all levels of photographer. The program also includes informal talks and image reviews, opportunities for one-on-one instruction and informal side-by-side shooting from the deck, in Zodiacs and during shore landings.

The expedition aboard small ship Polar Pioneer, accommodates just 54 passengers plus a team of Expedition Experts including naturalists and historians. The small ship experience ensures passengers enjoy the highest staff: passenger ratio and have the opportunity to truly maximise photographic opportunities. Polar Pioneer is supported by a fleet of Zodiacs and crew allowing all photographers to be shooting simultaneously with plenty of room to spare for camera equipment.

The 'Spirit of Antarctica' voyage featuring complimentary photography workshops with award-winning photographer, Joshua Holko, departs 6 to 17 December 2014 from Ushuaia in Argentina. The expedition price starts from US$8,700 per person, triple share and includes a complimentary waterproof polar jacket and hardback voyage journal, plus all accommodation, meals, shore excursions, guiding services, landing fees and photography program.

Join Joshua on this exciting Antarctic adventure and hone your photography skills in the most beautiful place on Earth.

For more information visit or freecall (Australia only) 1800 637 688 or +61 2 9252 1033 to speak to an Expedition Expert.

Spirit of Antarctica: Photography Expedition 6-17 December 2014

This 12-day voyage allows passengers to spend time capturing the ice and wildlife of Antarctica alongside one of Australia's most recognised photography experts. Departing Ushuaia and finishing in Punta Arenas, Chile, the route includes special access into areas normally restricted to scientific research, and exploration of spectacular locations such as the breathtaking Lemaire Channel, the Gerlache Strait and the surreal geothermal Deception Island, to name but a few. Photographers can expect to see plentiful wildlife including various species of penguins, whales, and seals. For more details on this voyage, please click here.

Saturday 21 June 2014

True North and El Questro combine for ultimate Kimberley luxury


El Questro Homestead and the luxury adventure-cruise ship True North (both members of Luxury Lodges of Australia) have partnered to offer the ultimate Kimberley experience.

The El Questro Homestead/True North partnership will allow guests to experience the Kimberley in unrequited luxury from the magnificent Kimberley coast to the oasis that is El Questro Homestead located at the heart of the 1 million acre El Questro Wilderness Park.

El Questro Homestead

El Questro Homestead

El Questro Homestead is located on a 1 million acre working cattle station and is one of Australia's most spectacular destinations in far north Western Australia.

Just 110km from Kununurra, El Questro is a remote and rugged destination that promises the seclusion to explore this iconic part of Australia with its landscaped forged over 350 million years ago as a result of volcanic eruptions – the result of which is the stunning Emma Gorge, Chamberlain Gorge and Cockburn Ranges. With four major rivers systems across the property, guests will see native animals, birds and fish in the rivers, fresh water springs and salt water estuaries.

A wide variety of exclusive experiences are on offer every day of the season which runs until the end of October each year. These allow guests to take in the vastness of the area by 4WD, helicopter, horse and on foot – all led by expert guides. In addition to new scenic flights available for this season, full-day fishing tours for the elusive local barramundi are also available. Homestead guests also enjoy exclusive access to the thermal springs of Zebedee Springs each afternoon.

Dining is a delicious event with menus inspired by local and Western Australian produce and guests can select to join other guests at a communal table or enjoy the privacy of dining for two on the ridge overlooking the Chamberlain Gorge – a truly unique El Questro experience.
True North (Mark Stothard)
True North

True North offers an exciting journey along the Kimberley coastline - one of the world's last great wilderness frontiers.

Guests have ample opportunity to explore otherwise impossible to access beaches and rivers. There are majestic waterfalls, awe inspiring gorges, abundant wildlife and encounters with ancient cultural history – a Kimberley experience like no other!

Starting in the pearling port of Broome - a seven-day Kimberly cruise aboard the True North includes the iconic Horizontal Waterfalls, the chance to 'land a barra' at Leadline Creek and maybe again in the Sale River, the opportunity to witness the tide falling from Montgomery Reef, the option to visit the Mitchell Falls via scenic heli-flight and, the privilege of seeing The Bradshaws – the oldest art known to man!

“Combining the spectacular coastline of the Kimberley on a True North cruise with a stay at El Questro Homestead, in the heart of this raw and rugged landscape, is a fantastic way to experience this stunning part of Australia,” said Lori Litwack, General Manager, El Questro Wilderness Park.

Craig Howson, founding director, North Star Cruises Australia added: “Our guests have already accumulated the very best in life experiences and they continue to have the highest expectations when embarking on the True North. They consistently disembark proclaiming that their time on-board was the best holiday that they have ever had, and the opportunity to combine a stay at the El Questro Homestead will lift the experience to even greater heights.”

The El Questro Homestead / True North Experience

A great value add has been designed for guests who choose to enjoy the El Questro Homestead / True North experience during 2015 -:
$250 per person on board credit for any True North Kimberley cruise
a two-for-one Miri Miri two-hour helicopter scenic flight from El Questro Homestead
half-price scheduled transfers to and from El Questro Homestead
a premium bottle of wine each night at El Questro Homestead

Prices for a seven-night True North Kimberley cruise start from $11,095 per person while three nights at El Questro Homestead starts from $3,464 per person.

The True North price includes all normal cruise activities and dining excepting alcoholic beverages and scenic heli-flights. The El Questro price includes accommodation, gourmet meals, all beverages including Champagne and Australian wines and selected touring.

For more details visit or

Wednesday 18 June 2014

Paradise Cruises introduces 'Halong Gay Cruise' 2014

Inspired by the International Day against Homophobia and Harvey Milk Day, and to highlight the admirable progress made by Vietnam's National Assembly in legal recognition of same-sex relationships, Paradise Cruises is delighted to be leading the way with Halong Bay's first ever Gay Cruise.

The cruise will take place on the 24th August 2014, the same month as Viet Pride, which takes place each year in Hanoi. The events and activities have been meticulously designed for a broad spectrum of LGBT communities, singles and groups, both locally and internationally, to relax and jointly celebrate LGBT pride and rights.

Cruise highlight is the Beach Gala Dinner which allows passengers to witness happy and touching moments of same-sex weddings officiated on the beach, a premium romantic beach dinner with live music, a beauty contest, Tai Chi class demonstration, various activities at Titov Island and Beach, Tuan Chau Marina, visit of Luon Cave and 'Surprise Cave'.

Price per person: USD$210.00 (Sharing a double basis), for inclusions please click here.

Paradise Cruises is represented in Australia and New Zealand by Complete Travel Marketing

Job: APT seeks small ship product manager


"Imagine leading a small team that is pioneering a dynamic new growth product with exciting and challenging destinations that span the globe making life long dreams come true, here’s your chance! You have the chance to develop your tourism career with Australia’s leading Tour Operator. APT’s Small Ship and Expedition cruising program is a world leader in experiential luxury travel."

Full details at Travel Daily

Tuesday 10 June 2014

Sea Explorer acquired by APT


APT Announces Acquisition of Third Expedition Ship

Award winning luxury cruise operator APT, along with UK partner Noble Caledonia, has announced the arrival of a third sister to its fleet of luxury small expedition ships. Joining the MS Island Sky and MS Caledonian Sky later this year will be MS Sea Explorer. All three vessels were formerly part of the Renaissance Cruises fleet of eight vessels. With the acquisition of Sea Explorer, APT now has Renaissance vessels 6, 7 and 8. (Ed: Sea Explorer was formerly Corinthian II, operated by Travel Dynamics)

Commenting on the latest acquisition, APT’s CEO, Chris Hall, said, “We are delighted to welcome the Sea Explorer as the latest addition to our growing fleet of luxury small expedition ships. Demand amongst our guests in Australia and New Zealand for our bespoke one off round the world voyages featured in our Luxury Small Ships program is increasing. This new addition enables us to service this demand.

‘Sea Explorer’, will join the APT fleet in October 2014. Various existing charter commitments will be honoured and in early 2016 she will undergo a refurbishment to bring its standards to the same level as the Island Sky and Caledonian Sky, which are widely recognised as two of the finest Small Ships in the world. She will begin cruising in Scotland, Norway and beyond for APT. Like her sister vessels, she will be equipped with a fleet of inflatable Zodiacs allowing her to offer trips to the more remote places for the 100 or so passengers looking for something different to a regular cruise.

According to Chris Hall, it is the smaller capacity, ‘off the beaten track’ cruise itineraries, and of course repeat APT travellers that is driving the increasing interest in the product:

Click to receive this free brochure
“Many of our guests who travel on our luxury small ship product have already sailed on one of our river cruises. They are attracted to this different cruise style because they’ve already created an affinity with the intimacy of travelling with an average of 150 people, and our ‘all-suite’ ships hit the right note with these guests who love the comfort and relaxed atmosphere but want to try a cruise aboard a private yacht-like expedition ship.”

APT now has the world covered with the Caledonian Sky exploring the Pacific Ocean whilst Island Sky sails the Indian Ocean and from 2016 will spend the summers in the Mediterranean. To find out more about APT’s Luxury Small Ship program for 2015 call 1300 196 420, visit or see your local business development manager.

Zegrahm to offer diving on Island Sky


Island Sky

Zegrahm Expeditions announced the 100-guest Island Sky will be retrofitted to offer complimentary scuba diving on the upcoming Ultimate Aldabra and Voyage to Madagascar expeditions.

Ultimate Aldabra: A Voyage through the Seychelles, Nov. 16 – Dec. 2, 2014, is a 17-day journey that will explore the remote islands of the Seychelles, and the waters that surround it. With a perimeter of 70 miles, Aldabra is one of the largest atolls in the world, and guests will spend four full days exploring this pristine natural environment. Besides discovering a wealth of rare and endemic species—including giant Indian Ocean tortoises, Aldabra white-throated rails, and Seychelles paradise-flycatchers—guests will snorkel and dive over 150 types of coral, observing some 850 species of rainbow-hued fish, as well as manta rays, spinner dolphins, green and hawksbill turtles, and hundreds of giant clams. Priced from $12,970 per person.

Departing Nov. 28, 2014, the 19-day Voyage to Madagascar with Zanzibar, Comoros, Réunion & Mauritius combines rugged coastlines with pristine coral reefs and a vast variety of wildlife. Guests will spend six days in Madagascar alone, searching for mouse, black and brown lemurs; 32 species of reptiles; and over 100 species of birds. With the addition of diving, guests will spend time among some of East Africa’s healthiest reefs, teeming with colorful fish, reef sharks, and turtles. Other highlights include visiting Zanzibar’s Stone Town—a UNESCO World Heritage Site—searching the indigenous forest in Mauritius, and exploring the mélange of Arabic and French architecture in the Comoros. Priced from $13,980 per person.

On each of these voyages, travelers will be joined by an expedition team of naturalists, divemasters and marine biologists, along with Zegrahm cofounders Jack Grove, Peter Harrison and Shirley Metz; plus, Mike Messick on Voyage to Madagascar.

For more information, visit

Sunday 8 June 2014

Silversea offers scuba diving on board Silver Discoverer



Silver Discoverer, the latest addition to the Silversea Expedition Fleet, has introduced a series of scuba diving opportunities on select voyages scheduled throughout 2014/2015.

Karen Christensen, General Manager & Director Sales/Marketing, Australasia, says the Silver Discoverer itineraries will offer experienced scuba divers the opportunity to see Asia Pacific's top diving sites.

"Asia Pacific is a scuba diver's paradise. Many of Silver Discoverer's voyages will  provide guests with the chance to see this region from a different perspective. Among the 12 dive sites available as part of the select Expedition voyages, guests can discover some of the world's most exotic underwater species while exploring WWII wrecks and extensive coral reef ecosystems scattered throughout the lagoons of the Indo-Pacific," says Christensen.

Silver Discoverer will visit regions such as the Solomon Islands and Palau Archipelago, which has been celebrated as one of the world's most spectacular diving hotspots featuring blue holes, hidden caves and tunnels, and an astonishing spectrum of coral fish and rare sea creatures.  

"Our Expedition team has carefully crafted these itineraries to provide our guests with the most awe-inspiring land and deep sea adventures.  Silver Discoverer is designed to accommodate a variety of travellers, including those who choose to explore a world beneath the surface.  A truly spectacular part of the Southern Hemisphere, these tropical waters really do tell a story of their own," says Christensen.

Aboard Silver Discoverer, a team of experts including Marine Biologists, Dive Masters, Environmentalists, Ecologists and Geologists will be on hand to share their extensive knowledge of the region.  

Silver Discoverer Scuba diving requirements:

·         All guests must hold an Advanced Open Water Dive License or equivalent;
·         Guests must obtain Medical Dive Travel Insurance;
·         Certification must be active and logbooks must show evidence that each guest has been diving within 12 months prior to the cruise;
·         All guests must pre-register with Silversea prior to the cruise; and
·         Guests must bring their own SCUBA BCDs, regulators and dive equipment. The ship will provide weight belts and tanks.

The following voyages offer scuba diving.  Please check the Silversea website for further details.

2014 voyages:
9415: Southeast Asia, 15 days, departing 21 September 2014

9416: Micronesia, Melanesia & Polynesia, 14 days, departing 6 October 2014
9418: Micronesia, Melanesia & Polynesia, 18 days, departing 3 November 2014

2015 voyages:

9505: Micronesia, Melanesia & Polynesia, 17 days, departing 21 February 2015
9506: Southeast Asia, 18 days, departing 10 March 2015
9513: Southeast Asia, 14 days, departing 29 May 2015
9520: Micronesia, Melanesia & Polynesia, 16 days, departing 28 September 2015
9521: Micronesia, Melanesia & Polynesia, 12 days, departing 14 October 2015
9522: Micronesia, Melanesia & Polynesia, 10 days, departing 25 October 2015
9523: Micronesia, Melanesia & Polynesia, 14 days, departing 4 November 2015
9524: Micronesia, Melanesia & Polynesia, 18 days, departing 19 November 2015
9525: Micronesia, Melanesia & Polynesia, 12 days, departing 7 December 2015

 For more information contact your travel professional or Silversea Cruises on +61 2 9255 0600+61 2 9255 0600 or 1300 306 8721300 306 872 (Australia) or 0800 701 4270800 701 427 (New Zealand), or visit

Two for one deal on Mekong River cruise

Two for the Price of One on the Mekong
* Save up to US$1718 *

Australian tour company, Active Travel, has released a two-for-the-price-of-one deal on a Mekong River cruise this October, offering savings of up to $1718 per couple.

The five-night cruise from the Cambodian capital of Phnom Penh to Saigon in Vietnam sails on October 3, 2014, and the special discount offer is available until sold out.

Aboard the deluxe, 14-cabin river boat, RV Toum Tiou II, passengers will be able to explore Phnom Penh with its French charm, old colonial architecture and busy street cafes before sailing to traditional river villages in Cambodia and across the border in Vietnam, with regular complimentary excursions offered ashore to meet the friendly locals and immerse travellers in the local culture.

The floating markets, orchards, gardens, pottery workshops, fish farms, colonial houses and villages of the Mekong delta appear next on the horizon before arrival in bustling Saigon.

The cruise includes accommodation, onboard meals, sightseeing excursions ashore and port fees.

The cruise is available from the specially discounted rate of US$1655 per cabin, twin-share, on the main deck (regular price $3310 per cabin) while an upper cabin is available from US$1719 per cabin, twin-share, (normally $3437). The two-for-one offer is available until sold out. Conditions apply. Flights from Australia are extra.

For details, visit or call 1300 783 1881300 783 188.

Canberra-based Active Travel was formed in 1982 by Australian adventure lovers, Robert Fletcher and Christine Pearson to help Australian travellers actively engage with and experience destinations and cultures. The family-owned travel agency and tour company offers more than 100 tours, adventures, river cruises and polar expeditions on all the seven continents. 

Friday 6 June 2014

Sales of Amazon Cruises doubled

New Enhanced Website Section on Amazon Offerings Created to Accommodate Growing Interest 
Small ship cruise expert AdventureSmith Explorations reports that sales of its Amazon programs have doubled since 2012. In response it has added to a dedicated Amazon trips section that showcases its cruise and lodge options in the rainforests of Peru, Ecuador and Brazil.
The company has also expanded its inventory of itineraries utilizing purpose-built, small expedition boats in this region.
“Because our experts travel to the Amazon frequently, we have the most up-to-date information so that we can match our clients with the best Amazon cruise for their interests, ability and budget,” notes Todd Smith, AdventureSmith Explorations president/founder.
Following are thumbnail sketches of Amazon riverboats and itineraries. All rates quoted are per person, double occupancy inclusive of all land excursions with professional guides, meals and use of on-vessel facilities. These river cruises access remote tributaries often free of lodges and signs of human life, providing minute-by-minute immersion into the flora and fauna and wildlife of the region.
Ecuador: The 40-guest Anakonda with wood-paneled and glass exterior is crafted in timeless riverboat style but with the space and comforts sought by modern adventurers. Built in 2013, it is the only luxury ship in this region. It offers three spacious decks with ample room in the lounge, outdoor patio, forward salons and a huge observation deck. Well-appointed staterooms have floor-to-ceiling windows and a large bathroom with massage shower. The suites are even larger with a balcony and Jacuzzi tub. Itineraries of four, five and eight days are from $1,600. Among the highlights is a village-hosted lunch deep in the Ecuadorian Amazon, one of the most bio-diverse regions in the world.
Peru: AdventureSmith Expeditions’ cruises in Peru begin and end in Iquitos. Last year the 31-guest Amatista was refurbished and now offers more affordable four and six-day cruises from $1,550. The cruise begins near the border with Brazil and Columbia in Iquitos, one of the new Seven Wonders of the World and the gateway to one of world’s most remote and extraordinary tropical environments. Two thirds of the world’s plants and animal species make their home in this region, as well as many more that are yet to be discovered. This cruise accesses the Pacaya Samiria National Reserve, one of the last accessible tropical rainforests in the world. The Reserve has an area of 2.08 million hectares, which represents a 1.5 percent of the total land area of the country and is the largest of Peru’s protected natural areas.
Renovated in 2014, the 14-suite Delfin II is one of the most sought-after cruise vessels in Peru, frequently chartered by Lindblad Expeditions/National Geographic for a unique 10 day expedition Exploring Peru’s Pacaya-Samiria Reserve that brings their unique style of intellectual exploration with on-board experts from National Geographic. Other four and five-day cruises from $2,300 are year-round. Throughout the ship is artwork from Peru's leading contemporary artists. (Art may be purchased and shipped home.)  A massage room and exercise room both offer wall-to-wall windows for enjoying ever-changing landscapes. Some of the spacious suites can be interconnected to accommodate families.
Luxurious all-suite, 32-guest Aria built in 2011 with Jacuzzi and exercise room offers year-round itineraries of four, five and eight days from $3,315 for the journey into the region defined by three powerful Amazon tributaries: the Marañón, the Ucayali and the Puinahua. Aria’s ambiance is that of a first-class jungle lodge, with oversized staterooms that accommodate linen-swathed twin beds converting to California king beds. Guests dine on fine china. Executive chef Pedro Miguel Schiaffino, one of Lima’s culinary stars, has created a menu that draws on both Peruvian and European influence. Wine is included with meals, providing the opportunity to experience a range of the finest South American vintages.
Aria’s sister ship is 24-guest Aqua, a luxury floating hotel, offers four, five and eight-day cruises year round from $3,165. This riverboat accesses via small launches remote estuaries in the Peruvian rainforest and the Reserve.
Brazil: In 2014 AdventureSmith Explorations added the 18-guest Tucano, a motor yacht operating out of Manaus, Brazil. This is the only vessel that explores far into the world’s largest Amazon reserve and the only expedition cruise in a UNESCO Natural World Heritage Site, the Central Amazon Conservation Complex. Five- and eight-day cruises are from $1,800. Venturing far up the Rio Negro immerses guests in abundant wildlife.  At Encontra das Aguas guests witness the meeting of the waters of the world’s two largest rivers: the light-colored Amazon River and the dark Rio Negro, waters that don’t readily mix but flow side by side for many miles.
For more information, cabin descriptions, availability and 2014 reservations, Phone: 800-728-2875 toll-free or visit

New Animated Guidelines for Visitors to the Arctic

Visitors to the Arctic can learn about safe, environmentally friendly and considerate behavior in the Arctic through a new animation developed by the Association of Arctic Expedition Cruise Operators (AECO).

The new 9-minute animation shows visitors what they can and cannot do when travelling in the Arctic in a down-to-earth and entertaining way. During the film the viewer is taken through a number of guidelines concerning environmental, safety-related and cultural issues.

To be viewed onboard expedition cruise vessels

The video will be shown to visitors onboard expedition cruise vessels operated by AECO members as a part of the general briefing at the beginning of an Arctic voyage. Vessels with video monitors installed in the passenger cabins or suites may also feature the animation on one of the channels.

Visitor information in mother tongues

The new animated video has an English voice-over with choice of subtitles in a number of other languages. This means that a high number of visitors can receive important information in their native tongues about safety, environmental precautions and interaction with cultures. AECO Executive Director Frigg Jørgensen said, "AECO is very proud to present these new animated guidelines for visitors to the Arctic, and hopes they will be well received, as the animation is a step forward in regard to educating visitors about the Arctic and how to go about their visit."

Animation reduces paper-use

AECO's guidelines for visitors to the Arctic has up until now been presented to passengers onboard AECO-member vessels, via PowerPoint presentations, postings onboard the vessels and/or through a booklet. Since the guidelines were first published as a booklet in 2007, almost 70.000 copies have been distributed to Arctic expedition cruise passengers. Viewing an animation instead of handing out the booklets will help reduce the use of paper.

100.000 US Dollars from Svalbard Environmental Protection Fund.

The animation was produced by Raindog Studios (, and the total cost of the production was approximately 650.000 NOK/USD 106.000/80.000 EURO. Funding was granted to AECO by the Svalbard Environmental Protection Fund, see:

Association of Arctic Expedition Cruise Operators (AECO)

AECO is an international association for expedition cruise operators, dedicated to the promotion of responsible, environmentally friendly and safe expedition cruise operations in the Arctic. The organization has more than 35 international members who operate approximately 25 vessels in Svalbard, Greenland, Canada and the Russian Arctic. AECO members carry approximately 14 000 passengers to the Arctic annually. AECO also has developed a number of guidelines, which regulate the members' operations and visitors' behavior.

The animated guidelines for visitors to the Arctic can be seen via: The video is also available on, which provides more general information about the Association of Arctic Expedition Cruise Operators. All of the association's guidelines can be accessed on:

The animated guidelines for visitors to the Arctic can be seen via:, and are also available on, which also provides more general information about the Association of Arctic Expedition Cruise Operators. All AECOs five different guidelines can be accessed on:

New Animated Guidelines for Visitors to the Arctic

Visitors to the Arctic can now educate themselves about safe, environmentally friendly and considerate behavior in the Arctic through a new entertaining animation. See: and read more on:

Explore Antarctica with Silversea Cruises


 Set foot on the continent of Antarctica, sail through iceberg sculptures and experience some of the world’s rarest sea animals and wildlife on this 10-day roundtrip voyage on board Silversea’s Silver Explorer.

Departing Ushuaia, Argentina, on 12 December, 2014, Silver Explorer will begin its journey by navigating the deep waters of the Drake Passage, a natural boundary where cold polar waters flow northward and warmer equatorial waters move southward. Renowned for attracting a multitude of whales and seabirds, including the black-browed albatross and white-chinned petrels, the Drake Passage provides guests with the opportunity to experience exquisite wildlife in a unique setting.

Sailing through the Antarctic Peninsula, each turn will reveal a breathtaking sight of icebergs and calving glaciers. Conditions permitting, guests will explore the Antarctic surrounds via Zodiac and visit such locations as: Brown Bluff, an ice-capped, 745-metre-high mountain; Paradise Bay, where guests can observe Argentina’s Base Brown, one of many Antarctic research stations; and Paulet Island, home to 80-90 thousand Adelie penguins, that often cover the entire island. Cruising back through the Drake Passage, guests will witness more wildlife and attend presentations offered by the on board Expedition Team. Returning to Ushuaia, guests will disembark on 22 December, 2014.

Prices are per person starting from AU$12,410 in an Adventurer Suite double occupancy. Silversea’s fares include charter flight between Buenos Aires and Ushuaia, all shore excursions hosted by an expert expedition team; all-suite accommodation with butler service; gourmet meals with menus designed by Relais & Châteaux; complimentary wines, Champagne and spirits served throughout the ships; and all gratuities.

This voyage is subject to availability. Expedition highlights and wildlife listed here are possible experiences only and cannot be guaranteed. Terms and conditions apply.

For more information, contact your travel professional or Silversea Cruises on +61 2 9255 0600 or 1300 306 872 or visit

Tuesday 3 June 2014

Tauck and BBC Earth offer enriching travel

Tauck and BBC Earth offer more eye-opening trips around the world!


See the world in a new way with Earth Journeys featuring the use of field equipment to see how BBC filmmakers reveal nature’s secrets – new camera and sound technology opens windows to worlds not easily viewed, or heard, by humans, and varies from tour to tour. And, view exclusive bespoke videos created for each destination by BBC Earth – they deepen your travel experience and share the filmmaker’s passion for a more intimate knowledge of our natural world.

And because you are a resident of Australia, when you book a 2015 Earth Journey, you also get one Free hotel night at Tauck’s hotel before or after your trip with Time on Tauck! Simply book your 2015 Earth Journey and hotel by January 2, 2015, subject to availability. Deposit must be paid at booking and other restrictions apply; ask at booking for details.

These are just a few of our Earth Journeys for 2015 – get all of the details on all of the journeys here. Space is filling quickly on preferred departure dates – so reserve now! Call your preferred travel agent or contact our representative in Australia – Travel the World on 1300-857-437 or email to reserve your space!

We look forward to welcoming you!

Daniel W. Mahar, CEO

Daniel W. Mahar, CEO


Cruising the Galápagos Islands CRUISING THE GALÁPAGOS ISLANDS

Where you get up-close to unique wildlife such as blue-footed boobies, sea lions, iguanas, penguins and more as you explore the remote Galápagos Islands with expert naturalists on a 9-day trip featuring a 6-night Galápagos cruise aboard an expeditionary-style yacht.

View Tour

Monday 2 June 2014

Fiji Princess relaunch


New look Fiji Princess launches

Blue Lagoon Cruises has relaunched it’s flagship vessel Fiji Princess back into the waters of Fiji following a $1.2m refurbishment last month.

Chief Executive Officer Peter Duncan said the small boutique cruise ship had a long history cruising the islands of Fiji.

“Fiji Princess has a long history in Fiji and it was high time she had a rest and a makeover,” Mr Duncan said.

"All interiors have been completely made over, and, paying tribute to the company's long maritime history, the theme is nautically inspired," he said.

“This refurbishment has been a long time in the planning, and is a major investment by Blue Lagoon Cruises not only into our vessel and product offering, but will also raise the bar of cruising experiences available in Fiji,”

"Blue Lagoon Cruises has recently come under our management and we have made several changes based on guest feedback including brand new itineraries with a maximum of four hours cruising each day, more activities and a more personal experience of the Fijian culture,"

“We used all Fijian businesses to do the work on the vessel in line with our commitment to an all Fijian crew and providing as authentic an experience as we can.”

Blue Lagoon Cruises commenced an intensive “re-launch” through the travel trade industry at the Fijian Tourism Exchange and is continuing activity together with travel media internationally.

"Our cruises are popular with people wanting to experience the ‘real’ Fiji – rather than just sitting in a 5 star resort for their holiday – and being a smaller boutique cruise ship means we can get right up close to the beaches and islands - we even tie up to a coconut tree at our anchorage just off our own private beach at Nanuya Lailai,” Mr Duncan said.

“We also work closely with the island communities to give our guests a taste of what life is like for these communities living on remote islands,” he said.

Cruises are based in the Yasawa Islands (now with transfers available from Mamanuca Island Resorts) and range in length from 3 to 7 nights.

First Edition of Berlitz River Cruising Guide


Cuts Through Brochure Hype. Berlitz Author Turns From Ocean Cruising To River Cruising

Douglas Ward
Douglas Ward, the Berlitz author renowned for setting the internationally recognised rating system for ocean-going cruise ships worldwide, has turned his attention to river cruising.

June 2014 (press copies are available now) sees the publication of the first edition of the frank and forthright Berlitz: River Cruising in Europe (£14.99). Almost every river cruise company promises ‘luxury’, but what does ‘luxury’ really mean? This new guide rates over 280 riverships independently and cuts through the hype of the river cruise brochures to help readers make an informed choice.

A river cruise is widely considered to be the most civilised way to see the best of Europe. Ward’s new book gives the lowdown on the pleasures and pitfalls of river cruising, with unbiased advice on what to expect and where to go. He provides candid reviews of all the major river cruise companies operating in the heart of Europe: which companies offer the best facilities, layout, food and accommodation, and rates the individual riverships on the same criteria. In brief, this warts-and-all guide tells readers everything they could ever want to know about the experience of cruising on Europe’s beautiful rivers and waterways.

With around one million people each year choosing to cruise on riverships, the guide will be invaluable for both river cruise novices and converts, as well as for those in the travel industry.
Ward concentrates on the cruises that can be purchased through specialist travel agents and tour operators, and on seven key rivers in Europe: the Danube, Rhein, Elbe, Rhone, Seine, Po and Douro, with a rundown of the best sights along those waterways.

Among the topics and highlights covered in the book are:

* Lifting the lid on what the dining experience is really like
* Booking and budgeting – any hidden extras?
* What to do if…
* 10 good reasons to take a river cruise
* What the brochures don’t say
* Dream getaway or a claustrophobic holiday nightmare – the pros and cons of river cruising
* A day in the life of a rivership
* A guide to the main river cruise ports and routes of Europe, with maps and top sights
* Barge cruising – the essentials of life in the slow lane.

Considered the world’s foremost authority of cruising, having spent more than 45 years working in the cruise industry, Douglas Ward travels up to 200 days each year aboard the world’s ocean-going cruise ships and riverships. He is best known for Berlitz Cruising & Cruise Ships, the best-selling annual guide to ocean cruising, which in September 2014 celebrates its 30th year of publication.

Adventure Canada 2015 Expedition Catalogue


Expedition operator Adventure Canada has unveiled its 2015 exploratory ocean and land-based trips in its new catalogue.

The 50-page resource features the company’s recent accomplishments, partnerships, new sailings and signature voyages. The catalogue includes a feature on Adventure Canada’s newest ship, Ocean Endeavour, with deck plans, an amenity guide and cabin details.

The company’s 27th season begins June 14, 2015 with Adventure Canada’s inaugural voyage through Quebec, incorporating the rural coastal regions of Quebec’s North Shore, the Gaspe, the Gulf of St. Lawrence, Magdalene Islands, and Saint Pierre, and ends in the marine-rich Galapagos Islands on Nov. 1, 2015.

Adventure Canada’s signature sailings, such as the Northwest Passage and Newfoundland Circumnavigation, also return in 2015.