Virtual Yoga @ Necker Island

Virtual yoga sessions may well have become a sign of the times right now, however when that live yoga session is coming directly from one of the most exclusive private islands in the world, it might just have something slightly special.

Virgin Limited Edition, who own an award-winning collection of luxury retreats around the world is launching virtual yoga, live from Necker Island, its stunning private island in the iconic British Virgin Islands.

Renowned for not only being the home to Sir Richard Branson, the beautiful 74 acres of private paradise and unquestionably the most idyllic place in the British Virgin Islands, is also home to yoga teacher Katie Doo.

Whilst Katie typically spends her days offering group and private yoga lessons exclusively for the guests of Necker Island, Virgin Limited Edition will be sharing a series of live yoga sessions from Katie, directly from the stunning surrounds of Necker Island.

Katie has more than 10 years’ experience in wellness and beauty and has spent the past year ensuring her skills, combined with the exquisite surrounds of Necker Island, enable her guests to truly switch off, relax and unwind.  And whilst we might not have such a beautiful location to enjoy right now, Katie’s yoga sessions will not only bring her expertise and love for the practice to Instagram; but also the picture-perfect setting of the British Virgin Islands, to us at home.

“The practice of yoga has completely transformed my life”, says Katie.  “I truly believe that great energy is contagious, and yoga enables us to magnify our feel-good vibrations.  It allows us to escape to a special place, especially during a time when life is not quite normal, and exercise becomes an even more important part of our mental wellbeing.

“I couldn’t be happier than to share my practice of yoga and help bring that special place into people’s homes, combined with the incredible location I’m so privileged to spend my days.”

Virtual yoga sessions will be for all levels of fitness and yoga and will start on Thursday 18th June and run weekly for four weeks.

When:          Every Thursday at 17:00 BST, starting 18th June 2020 for four weeks

Where:        Instagram @VirginLimitedEdition

Virgin Limited Edition has been running a succession of virtual programmes including its hugely successful sofa safari from the stunning plains of the famous Maasai Mara at its tented safari camp, Mahali Mzuri, as well as Ulusaba, its luxury private game reserve in the Sabi Sand, South Africa.  Despite the fact that it is still difficult to travel right now, this virtual series of videos have allowed us to still dream of travelling.

Additional Virgin Limited Edition’s Lives:

 Live game drive from the magic of the bush at Ulusaba Private Game Reserve

When:          Every Monday at 3:00pm BST

Where:         Instagram – @VirginLimitedEdition

Live game drive from the majesty of the Maasai Mara at Mahali Mzuri

When:          Every Wednesday at 3:00pm BST

Where:         Facebook – @VirginLimitedEdition

For more information on Ulusaba Private Game Reserve, Mahali Mzuri, Necker Island or Virgin Limited Edition call T: 0800 716 919 (UK toll free). Alternatively e-mail enquiries@virginlimitededition.com.

AlUla re-opening October 2020

In October 2020, AlUa, an undiscovered wonder of the world which includes a UNESCO World Heritage Site, will officially re-open and welcome visitors.

While some attendees of AlUa’s Winter at Tantora annual arts festival have been granted access to the archaeological sites in the event’s first two years, now for the first time, AlUla’s landmarks of unprecedented historical and cultural significance and its 250,000 years of human legacy are going to be accessible for all visitors all year round.

AlUla is in North West Saudi Arabia and is accessed via air from Jeddah or Riyadh, and by car from Medina, Tabuk Airport, and the Red Sea. With a focus firmly on conservation and responsible tourism, since 2017 The Royal Commission for AlUla (RCU) has been transforming AlUla into a must-visit culture and heritage destination.

Visitors will be able to access the main heritage sites, cultural touring options, and a range of adventure experiences.

Phillip Jones, Chief Destination Officer, RCU said, “With the rebound of the travel sector undoubtedly starting close to home, KSA residents within a drive or a short flight of AlUla will get a head start on experiencing the raw, natural beauty and monumentality of landscapes in their backyard.”

Overnight visitors can choose from five accommodation providers each with its own take on desert luxury. AlUla’s accommodation stock is set to progressively increase to more than 9400 rooms by 2035.

The four key heritage sites that visitors will be able to access are, Hegra, a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 2008; Dadan, probably one of the most developed 1st millennium BCE cities of the Arabian Peninsula; Jabal Ikmah, often referred to as the ‘open-air library’, offering insights to ancient beliefs, rituals and practices of every-day life; and Old Town, the ancient walled city of AlUla which has been at the crossroad of civilisations from the twelfth century CE.

AlUla’s immersive experiences will also extend beyond the heritage sites.

Walks, treks and trails will be available both guided by the local Rawi (Arabic storyteller) or self-guided for visitors who want to delve deeper into the stories and customs of the region.

“We are developing immersive, light-touch experiences that harness the power and silence of the landscapes, experiences like guided stargazing in a desert night sky that has inspired science, religion, philosophy, art and literature for millennia.”

Adventure tourists will also be catered for, whether it’s tearing around the sandscapes in a desert buggy, or taking to the skies in a vintage light air-craft to see volcanic craters and key hole tombs in the lava fields of Harrat Khaybar.

For families, Hijrat Noura, or Princess Noura Farm, located close to Hegra offers a chance to get up close and personal with the local flora and fauna.

Winter Park, an experience developed for the Winter at Tantora festival will also make a come-back as a more permanent attraction offering a casual open-air atmosphere for food trucks and art installations.

After a day of sightseeing, visitors can stroll through the cool and sheltered oasis – a green canopy of palm grove where the air is perfumed with the scent of dates, orange and mint grown nearby.

Dining options include local restaurants, many featuring produce sourced from nearby farms.

For the business tourism market, Maraya, a wonder of the architectural world, is a multi-use 500-seat events venue that is covered in 10,000 square metres of mirrors, reflecting the surrounding landscape. Maraya is scheduled to re-open in December 2020.

“A visit to AlUla is a transformative experience to all who have visited. Its vast open spaces, its secrets of civilisations gone by and the pure wonder of its landmarks – both old and new,” said Mr Jones.

ABOUT THE ROYAL COMMISSION FOR ALULA
The Royal Commission for Al-Ula(RCU) was established on July 20th, 2017 to protect and safeguard Al-Ula, embarking on a long-term plan to develop and deliver a sensitive, sustainable transformation of the region, reaffirming it as one of country’s most important archaeological and cultural destinations and preparing it to welcome visitors from around the world.

New Caledonia Goes Virtual

New Caledonia Tourism has launched a new virtual hub filled with immersive videos and images to discover a taste of the South Pacific destination until borders reopen. Head to newcaledonia.travel to explore the flavours of New Caledonia with recipes inspired by the destination, chill out with a range of relaxing music videos set to soothing views of New Caledonia’s landscapes or get your adrenaline pumping with a 360 degree video experience – such as skydiving over New Caledonia’s UNESCO World Heritage listed lagoon.

“While international borders remain closed, New Caledonia Tourism wants to keep the dream of travel alive for our Australian neighbours. This is just a taster of what travellers can enjoy in New Caledonia, and we look forward to welcoming visitors again soon to discover all they’ve experienced virtually and so much more,” said Emilie Hess, Director of New Caledonia Tourism, Australia.

New content will be launched on the hub and via New Caledonia’s social media each week. Follow #NewCalUploading on Facebook and Instagram to join the conversation.

For more information, visit newcaledonia.travel.

Monaco Reopens

Monte-Carlo Bay Hotel & Resort Lagoon  © Monte-Carlo Société des Bains de Mer

After two months of lockdown, health prevention policies implemented by the authorities of the Principality of Monaco have allowed since the beginning of May, a gradual recovery of economic and touristic activities.

Step by step, many sectors are reviving their activities in close cooperation with professional and economic actors and in strict compliance with the safety measures against the pandemic.

Since 2 June 2020, museums, bars and restaurants have started to reopen, a few days after the shops and joining a vast recovery movement. In a context where the Government of Monaco has always prioritised health safety, especially at the peak of the crisis, everything has been done to protect residents, day trippers and tourists, and therefore limit the impact of COVID-19.

Hotel Hermitage Monte-Carlo  © Monte-Carlo Société des Bains de Mer

Today, hotels of Monaco are mobilized towards one objective:  welcoming customers in the best conditions, with high standard of health protection, according the following schedule:

All the measures guaranteeing a safe and peaceful stay can be checked online, as well as the available activities in the present circumstances:

Nikki Beach at Fairmont Monte-Carlo © Hotel Fairmont Monte-Carlo

Monte-Carlo SBM (Hôtel de Paris Monte-Carlo, Hôtel Hermitage Monte-Carlo, Monte-Carlo Bay Hotel & Resort, Monte-Carlo Beach, Casinos de Monte-Carlo): https://www.montecarlosbm.com/en/travel-information

Metropole Monte-Carlo: www.metropole.com/pdf/HOTEL/Mesures_Protection_Sanitaire_HotelMetropoleMC.pdf

Fairmont Monte-Carlo & Novotel Monte-Carlo: https://all.accor.com/event/information.en.shtml

Meriden Beach Plaza: https://marriott-re-2019ncovc-fr.com/

Columbus Monte-Carlo: https://www.columbushotels.com/fr/presentation/info-faq-covid/

The Monaco Government Tourist & Convention Authority together with all the hotels of Monaco are committed to provide the most complete information and maintain the Principality as a safe destination to experience and stay over.

Back With Silversea

Open exclusively to Venetian Society members, Silversea’s 86 new voyages encompass 222 destinations, 67 countries and 8 maiden calls, including two in Australia – Philip Island and Geelong.  The new season incorporates twelve sailings in Australasia with two ships based in the region for the first time.

Silversea Cruises, the leading ultra-luxury cruise line, today unveils 86 new itineraries for (southern) summer 2021/2022 and opens an exclusive pre-sale to members of its Venetian Society – the cruise line’s loyalty program – before opening for general sale on 17 June 2020.

Departing between October 2021 and April 2022, the new program features voyages in Australia & New Zealand, the Caribbean, South America, Galapagos, Middle East and Asia.  Of particular note is an expanded program of close-to-home sailings in our region with the newly-refurbished Silver Shadow joining the flagship Silver Muse as the second Silversea vessel to be based down under.

“We are delighted to open this exclusive pre-sale on our new summer 2021/22 voyages,” says Barbara Muckermann, Silversea’s Chief Marketing Officer. “Our Venetian Society members have travelled the world extensively, experiencing new and unusual moments that capture the spirit of discovery and authenticity. Our destination experts have crafted our new voyage collection with those guests in mind: numerous maiden calls, an in-depth exploration of the Amazon River, our most extensive Australia & New Zealand program and an endless number of adventures in between.  The range and quality of experiences on offer is simply unique.”

Maiden calls in the global program are Phillip Island and Geelong in Australia; Manama, Bahrain; Miyako, Japan; Makassar, Indonesia; Vigan Salomague, the Philippines; Puerto Bolivar, Ecuador and Kingstown, St. Vincent.  Other highlights will include:

2017, 9704, bangladesh, bengal, bruno, bruno cazarini, drone, expedition, india, indian ocean, silver Discoverer, sri lanka, Asia

  • Iconic favourites and lesser-visited jewels, as part of the most extensive Australia & New Zealand program to date: 12 new close-to-home voyages aboard two ultra-luxurious Silversea ships: the elegant 596-guest Silver Museand the completely reimagined 388-guest Silver Shadow will take guests deeper into our region than ever before. While travellers will gain fresh perspectives of quintessential favourites, they will also delve deep into the lesser-travelled jewels of Tasmania, Melanesia and Indonesia’s Java Sea. Guests will also enjoy two brand new itineraries between Cairns and Sydney, uniquely combining ports of call in Queensland, Victoria, Tasmania and New South Wales in one voyage.

 

  • A diverse range of voyages across Asia, including an enhanced offering in Japan, deep discovery of Vietnam, and new itineraries to Indonesia and Papua New Guinea: Silver Muse, Silver Shadow and our new ship Silver Moon will take travellers closer to the delights of this exotic region. Guests will enjoy an immersive discovery of Japan on four round-trip voyages from Tokyo; as well as alluring options in Southeast Asia, with a focus on captivating Vietnam, and special experiences in Komodo, Makassar and Bali.  A key highlight are two voyages to the fascinating and unspoiled paradise of Papua New Guinea on Silver Shadow.

 

  • A 74-night circumnavigation of South America aboard new ship Silver Dawn, with an unprecedented exploration of the Amazon River: Sailing round-trip from Fort Lauderdale, this Grand Voyage on our newest vessel will take guests deep into the gems of South America, with multiple calls in Ecuador, Peru, Chile, Uruguay, Argentina and Brazil. A highlight of the voyage, guests will travel down the Amazon River to Manaus on the trip on a lifetime.

 

  • New itineraries on both Silver Shadow and Silver Moon in the Middle East and the Persian Gulf, plus new adventures in the Indian Ocean’s iconic destinations of India, Sri Lanka, and Myanmar: A maiden call in Manama, the capital city of Bahrain, will highlight a new itinerary in the Persian Gulf aboard the new 596-passenger Silver Moon; while calls in Muscat, Luxor, Petra, the Suez Canal, Israel, and Rhodes will showcase the best of the Middle East on a number of remarkable itineraries on both ships. In addition, two itineraries offer a three-day call to Yangon, including a Silver Moon voyage departing on Valentine’s Day in 2022.

 

  • 30 Galapagos voyages aboard new 100-guest ship Silver Origin, including longer holiday options of 10 and 11 days: The newly launched destination-specific Silver Origin will form deep connections between Silversea’s guests and the Galapagos Archipelago on 30 new voyages between October 2021 and April 2022. The acclaimed 7-day itineraries will be supplemented with two, longer holiday cruises: a 10-day Christmas voyage on 18 December 2021 and an 11-day New Year’s voyage on 28 December 2021.

 

  • Feelings of exclusivity in the Caribbean, with an emphasis on the small islands, as well as calls at the classic destinations: Departing from both Fort Lauderdale and Bridgetown, Silver Spirit and Silver Whisper will journey through the Caribbean, unlocking the region’s authentic charm for guests in both small and emblematic destinations. In the Eastern Caribbean, guests will discover the islands of St. Barts, Grenada, and St. Lucia,; while Mérida in Yucatán, Belize, Guatemala, and Honduras await in the Western Caribbean; and Aruba, Bonaire, and Curacao will fascinate travellers in the south.

 

  • Silversea’s World Cruise, the Tale of Tales 2022: Journeying from 65°S to 65°N, Silver Whisper will visit 69 destinations across 32 countries, departing 6 January 2022. Accompanied by a celebrated line-up of illustrious creatives, Silversea’s guests will transit the Panama Canal, cruise the Chilean Fjords, step foot on land in Antarctica, walk among the spectacular wildlife of South Georgia, relax on remote beaches in the Seychelles, admire Petra in Jordan, discover the Holy Land and the highlights of the Mediterranean, before exploring the natural wonders of Northern Europe, as well as enjoying many more once-in-a-lifetime experiences.

 

On new bookings made before 30 June 2020, travellers will benefit from Silversea’s new Double Bonus offer, through which guests can reserve their voyage with low deposits from just AUD 1,500 per suite. Guests will also receive USD 1,000 to spend on-board. This offer is fully combinable with the Early Booking Bonus and, for select sailings, qualifies for Silversea’s “Cruise With Confidence” policy.

 

Find out more information about Silversea’s new summer 2021/2022 itineraries:

https://www.silversea.com/lp-new-itineraries-2021-2022.html

Beyond Belief

While tourism businesses scramble to adapt to the domestic market in the wake of Covid-19, Fiordland’s regional tourism organisation could argue its one step ahead of them all.

Destination Fiordland has always been justifiably proud of its operators and attractions in the lakeside townships of Te Anau and Manapouri, and the raw majesty of Fiordland National Park’s glacier-carved fiords and rugged mountains.

But with many visitors starting and finishing their Fiordland adventures in Queenstown, making a quick pit-stop in Te Anau, the tourism organisation embarked on a brand refresh in October last year.

Fiordland Beyond Belief. Photo credit Chris Watson

The goal? To shout loud and clear from those mountaintops that Fiordland exemplifies all that’s good about New Zealand and is a destination in its own right, where locals value their visitors and ‘walk the talk’ about maintaining the world-class natural environment for generations to come.

The new brand ‘Fiordland – Beyond Belief’ was revealed to operators this week, setting out to target domestic travelers from day one and positioning Te Anau as ‘base camp’, while opening the eyes of international visitors to the fact there’s so much more to Fiordland than Milford Sound.

“The launch of our new brand comes at a challenging time, where fortune favours the bold,” says Destination Fiordland manager Madeleine Peacock. “Our challenge was to find a positioning that reflects all this majesty and helps drive visitation by making Fiordland a unique, inspiring, authentic and unmissable part of Aotearoa New Zealand, a place worth visiting.

“Fiordland is a must-see for international visitors but even last year we could see the untapped potential of domestic visitors. We clearly have a job to do at home, and this is a great start.”

Ms Peacock says ‘Fiordland – Beyond Belief’ conveys the scale, grandeur and mind-blowing nature of the area, and applies to everything on offer from the people who call Fiordland ‘home’  to the quality of experiences, accommodation and food, and a deep sense of connection with the environment .

A Takehe in all its glory. Photo credit Douglas Thorne

“Our research has identified Kiwis desire to connect with nature, looking for real world experiences in their backyard, connecting with natural environments and ensuring those environments will be protected for generations to come – it’s about who we are as Kiwis.

“Doubtful and Dusky Sounds, the Great Walks and Lakes Te Anau and Manapouri have to an extent been hiding in the shadow of Milford Sound, however these areas are equally as impressive.

Kerri James, owner operator of award-winning five-star accommodation provider Radfords On The Lake, says she’s “absolutely delighted” with the new brand.

“People down this way epitomise Southern hospitality, and ‘beyond belief’ is the perfect fit to describe Fiordland and everything we have to offer,” she says.

Fiordland Outdoors owner operator Christine Wallace says the brand is in “perfect synergy” with the high-value experience that Fiordland offers.

“The brand communicates a premium location and offering that’s very much in sync with what we do here. It’s very timely when all regions around New Zealand are being considered by domestic travelers,” she says.

Jodi Williams, Air New Zealand’s General Manager Global Brand and Content Marketing, says Air New Zealand has a special connection with Fiordland through its work with DOC to bring back birdsong on the Great Walks, three of which are located in Fiordland.

“Fiordland Beyond Belief helps position Fiordland as a world-class destination, famous for its majestic scenery, and has inspired me to visit this unique and special part of New Zealand,” she says.

Operators are currently being encouraged to incorporate the ‘Beyond Belief’ brand and associated imagery into their marketing and a new website is expected to launch within the next two months.

 

BridgeClimb is back…

Sydney back on top!
BridgeClimb doors unlock for July school holidays

Sydney’s iconic BridgeClimb experience is unlocking the doors and welcoming climbers back to explore one of the world’s most famous structures from June 27th.

After months of time indoors, Sydneysiders/Australians are invited to rediscover the city through Sydney’s greatest experience at unmissable rates of $198 Adults and $99* Children for the winter school holidays – over 35% off adults, and over 50% off standard kids, day climb prices.

The holiday at home special, BridgeClimb Unlocked, is now available to purchase on Summit and Summit Express climb routes departing between 10am – 3pm every day during the NSW public school holidays, and on Saturdays and Sundays from 27 June 2020 to 19 December 2020.

  • The Summit Climb (allow 3.5 hours) ascends on the upper arch of the Bridge, suiting adventurers who want to feel like they are beneath the clouds and families with kids who are confident scaling ladders to reach the top.
  • The Summit Express Climb (allow 2.5 hours) follows the Bridge’s lower arch to reach the top. This route suits those who are architecturally-curious about the old gal and want to feel they are in the belly of the steel structure. There are fewer stops along the route and no ladders but still the same magnificent view at the top.

BridgeClimb is operating as a COVID Safe place to visit and work. All Climbs will travel in small, physically distanced groups, and the entirety of BridgeClimb premises will operate with increased cleaning schedules, including ongoing sanitisation completed within the Climb Base, and throughout climber’s pre and post-climb journey.

“The BridgeClimb team are beyond excited to unlock our doors with an exclusive offer for locals, friends and neighbours to visit the arches where they can reunite, reconnect and reset,” said BridgeClimb CEO David Hammon.

“Like many other NSW tourism operators, there is much-needed support for the industry so we’re looking forward to welcoming back climbers and creating lasting memories with them by showing off the great city we live in from the best seat in the house.”

From romantic dates to fun family bonding, BridgeClimb is the perfect must-do activity to connect and create lifetime memories together outside the home, coupled with experiencing the best views of Sydney.

*Until 19 July 2020 only as part of our Winter School Holiday Special. Special offer pricing for children outside of school holidays is $126 (over 35% off standard pricing).

For more information on BridgeClimb, please visit the website here and to keep up with updates check out @bridgeclimb #bridgeclimbunlocked

Viking Officially Opens Reservations for New Mississippi River Cruises

 Viking has today opened reservations to the public for its inaugural Mississippi River cruises, launching 2022. The company’s first custom vessel, Viking Mississippi, will debut in August 2022 and will sail voyages on the Lower and Upper Mississippi River, between New Orleans and St. Paul.

Currently scheduled ports of call on Viking’s new Mississippi River cruises comprise seven U.S. states: Louisiana (Baton Rouge, Darrow, New Orleans and St. Francisville); Mississippi (Natchez and Vicksburg); Tennessee (Memphis); Missouri (Hannibal, St. Louis); Iowa (Burlington, Dubuque and Davenport); Wisconsin (La Crosse); and Minnesota (Red Wing, St. Paul).

As part of an exclusive preview promised by Viking Chairman Torstein Hagen, past Viking guests have been able to book the new Mississippi River cruises since 30 March 2020 and some departure dates are already nearly or completely sold out. As of today, all inaugural sailings of Viking Mississippi‘s 2022-2023 season are now available to the public for booking.

“At a time where many of us are at home, looking for inspiration to travel in the future, I am pleased to introduce a new, modern way to explore this great river. We invented the concept of modern river cruising when we got our start 23 years ago—first on the rivers of Russia and then in Europe. Since then, many people have come to appreciate the unique exploration that comes with river cruising—but currently there are very few options to do so on American rivers,” said Hagen when the new Mississippi River cruises were announced on March 30, 2020.

“Our guests are curious travellers, and they continue to tell us that the Mississippi is the river they most want to sail with us. No other waterway has played such an important role in America’s history, commerce and culture.”

The highly anticipated announcement of Viking’s arrival on the Mississippi is the most recent milestone as the company continues to expand its fleet and destination-focused travel offerings. In January 2020 the company unveiled Viking Expeditions, with the first 378-guest purpose-built expedition ship, Viking Octantis, launching in January 2022 on voyages to Antarctica and then North America’s Great Lakes. A second expedition vessel, Viking Polaris, will debut in August 2022, sailing to Antarctica and the Arctic.

Viking Mississippi

Hosting 386 guests in 193 all outside staterooms, the new state-of-the-art Viking Mississippi is inspired by Viking’s award-winning river and ocean ships and will feature clean Scandinavian design, as well as public spaces that are familiar to guests but that have been reimagined for Mississippi River voyages.

Purpose-built for the Mississippi and currently under construction in Louisiana, the five-deck ship’s cutting-edge design, expansive windows and comfortable amenities will make it the largest and most modern cruise ship in the region.

Highlights of the new ship include:

Rendering of the Viking Mississippi – Seating area on the Bow in front of the Explorer’s Lounge.

·       All Outside Staterooms: Guests can choose from an unparalleled seven spacious stateroom categories that range from 268 sq. ft to 1,024 sq. ft: Veranda, French Balcony, Deluxe Veranda, Penthouse Veranda, Penthouse Jr. Suite, Terrace Suite and Explorer Suite. All staterooms feature a private veranda or French balcony, king-size bed with luxury linens, large flat-screen interactive TV, mini-bar, large glass-enclosed shower, heated bathroom floor and 24-hour room service.

 

·       Viking Suites: Viking Mississippi will have some of the largest true suites on the river, with every suite featuring two rooms and a full-size veranda off the spacious sitting room. Guests in Penthouse Jr. Suites (400 sq. ft.) and Terrace Suites (425 sq. ft.) receive early stateroom access; expanded double-sink bathroom; mini-bar with alcoholic beverages, soft drinks, water and snacks replenished daily; welcome champagne; and laundry, pressing and shoe shine services. Guests in the expansive Explorer Suites (657 sq. ft. to 1,024 sq. ft) also receive a wraparound veranda and complimentary Silver Spirits Beverage Package.

·       Explorers’ Lounge & The Bow: Familiar to Viking’s ocean guests as one of the most popular onboard public spaces, Viking Mississippi will also feature an Explorers’ Lounge near the bow of the ship. The sun-filled, two-story Explorers’ Lounge has floor-to-ceiling windows that open to The Bow, a unique outdoor seating area at the front of the ship where guests can relax and enjoy ever-changing riverside views 

·       River Café: From American classics to Mamsen’s Norwegian specialties, this indoor/outdoor dining venue on the top deck will offer alternative restaurant dining in a casual al fresco setting.  

·       Aquavit Terrace: A public space beloved by many of Viking’s ocean and river guests, Viking Mississippi will also feature a revolutionary Aquavit Terrace on the top deck, providing a casual dining space ideal for an American barbecue experience. Combined with the River Café, the Aquavit Terrace will provide the most al fresco dining options on the Mississippi. 

·       Sun Terrace with Infinity Plunge Pool: Similar to Viking’s ocean ships, Viking Mississippi will have a glass-backed pool experience at the aft, allowing guests to take a dip while fully surrounded by their destination.

·       The Living Room: Clean Scandinavian design paired with American influences, the Living Room on Deck 1 is designed for socializing, relaxing and entertainment. Nearby, the quiet corner of The Library, is a perfect place to discover a new book.

·       The Restaurant: This main dining venue on Deck 1 will serve daily-changing menus featuring delicious regional cuisine and always available classics prepared with fresh, local ingredients.

·       Full 360-Degree Promenade Deck: Guests can stroll the entire ship outside on Deck 1, stretching their legs while viewing scenic landscape and regional wildlife.

·       Enrichment On Board and On Shore: Connecting guests to their destinations through authentic experiences is central to Viking creating “the thinking person’s cruise.” A focus on cultural enrichment on board Viking Mississippi means that guests will enjoy Destination Performances that represent the most iconic music of the region—as well as Guest Lecturers that shed light on the region’s art, architecture, history, culture, natural world and more. And only The Viking Way of exploration provides guests with itineraries that feature Privileged Access, Local Life and Working World experiences, opening doors to places otherwise difficult to visit. On Viking’s Mississippi River itineraries, guests may choose to take a guided kayaking trip in the Louisiana bayou; visit a working farm in Quad Cities; or immerse themselves in Cajun culture during a Privileged Access excursion to the Rural Life Museum of Louisiana State University. 

·       Sustainable Features: Solar panels, LED lighting, floor-to-ceiling windows that maximize natural light and an energy-efficient hybrid propulsion system will make Viking Mississippi the most environmentally friendly passenger ship on the Mississippi River.

·       Viking Inclusive Value: Every Mississippi River cruise fare includes everything guests need, with no surprises or hidden fees. Cruise fares include one complimentary shore excursion in each port of call, all onboard meals, and all gratuities, port charges and government taxes. Guests also enjoy many complimentary amenities as part of their fare, including beer and wine with lunch and dinner service, lectures, alternative dining at no extra charge, self-service launderettes, 24-hour room service and free Wi-Fi.

2022-2023 Viking Mississippi Inaugural Voyages 

  • America’s Heartland (8 days; St. Louis to St. Paul or v.v)—From pristine farms nestled in rolling terrain to steep bluff rising from tributaries dotted with wooded islands, the Upper Mississippi offers a rich tapestry of beauty upon every turn of the river. This journey introduces you to the unforgettable experience of the locks and dams that control the flow of the heartland rivers. Hear stories of settlers migrating west; learn about Lewis & Clark, Mark Twain, John Deere and the Amish and Norwegian migrations; experience the regional music like polka and Norwegian folk; and taste reginal cuisine showcasing local beer, produce and Wisconsin cheese. Priced from AUD$6,995pp, twin share.
  • Heart of the Delta (8 days; New Orleans to Memphis or v.v.)—This journey on the Lower Mississippi is infused with American history, culture and heritage. Tour the area where the migrating French and Acadians settled; immerse yourself in the culture and lessons from the American Civil Rights Movement; discover the music of the South—jazz, blues and gospel; and experience the life and food culture of the south, from Cajun and Creole to the famed “dry” Memphis BBQ. Priced from AUD$5,695pp, twin share.
  • Southern Celebration (8 days; New Orleans–Vicksburg–New Orleans)—On this exploration of the Lower Mississippi, visit the historic homes of Louisiana and Mississippi; learn about Civil War history, touring sites like Vicksburg National Military Park; and discover the excitement and unique flavors of New Orleans and Baton Rouge. Priced from AUD$5,795pp, twin share.
  • America’s Great River (15 days; New Orleans to St. Paul or v.v.)—Experience nearly the entire length of the Mississippi River on this incredible journey from the Gulf of Mexico to the northernmost reaches of the U.S. Relax and enjoy the variety of scenery, foliage and wildlife on this leisurely voyage. Enjoy southern charm and beautifully preserved homes in Natchez; retrace the steps of Civil Rights leaders in Memphis; ascend the Gateway Arch in St. Louis; and visit “The Norwegian Valley” in La Crosse. Priced from AUD$14,595pp, twin share.

For additional information, visit vikingcruises.com.au or phone 138 747 (AU) | 0800 447 913 (NZ).

RIMOWA TRAVELS

RIMOWA TRAVELS TO VENICE BEACH FOR A BEACH-INSPIRED COLLABORATION WITH GARRETT LEIGHT’S EYEWEAR BRAND GLCO

Marked by a shared passion for craftsmanship and expertise, RIMOWA and indie eyewear brand Garrett Leight California Optical (GLCO) join forces to release a special edition collection inspired by the sun-soaked surf culture and psychedelic art scene of the Californian coast.

“We’re excited to team up with Garrett Leight to launch RIMOWA’s first-ever eyewear collaboration,” said Alexandre Arnault, CEO of RIMOWA. “As long-time fans of Garrett Leight California Optical, we were thrilled to develop this exclusive Venice Beach-inspired beach set together coinciding with the California brand’s 10th anniversary.”

In just ten years, Garrett Leight’s eyewear brand has gained a loyal cult following of its own including some of the most recognizable global tastemakers. Blending old and new, iconic and innovative, Garrett Leight California Optical brings a fresh perspective to classically tailored eyewear. Using only the highest quality materials, Garrett Leight California Optical frames are carefully designed at their studio in the Arts District of Downtown Los Angeles and manufactured with cutting edge technology, attention to detail, and skilled hand detailing.

“I always look for best-in-class partners to collaborate with, and there’s truly no one better than RIMOWA when it comes to luggage. Sunglasses are an important accessory for any traveller, so partnering with them to create this experiential package for our consumers felt very organic,” said Garrett Leight, Founder & CEO of GLCO. “Paying homage to our California heritage and the legendary eras that inspired this collaboration is a perfect way to celebrate our ten years in business.”

The exclusive eyewear collaboration includes six pairs of expertly crafted sunglasses, two luggage sticker sets and a limited-edition RIMOWA x Garrett Leight California Optical Essential Cabin Suitcase in white gloss. Inside the suitcase, customers will find a pair of RIMOWA x Garrett Leight California Optical Gold sunglasses and a complete line of beach-ready accessories, including a beach towel, surf wax, the limited-edition luggage sticker sets, and a luggage tag specially crafted for this partnership.

Captured in a campaign written and directed by Dave Franco that celebrates the lifestyle and culture of Venice Beach, the special edition eyewear collection includes six sunglass designs, including three metal and three acetate frames. Lens colours vary from sepia, green, blue or black. Each pair of RIMOWA x Garrett Leight California Optical sunglasses comes housed in a unique co-branded grooved sunglasses case.

Available starting from March 12, 2020, the RIMOWA x Garrett Leight California Optical sunglasses (HK$3,220 each) and the RIMOWA x Garrett Leight California Optical Essential Suitcase (HK$8,850) will be available in select retail stores and online at RIMOWA.com and GarrettLeight.com.

 

4 health and wellness tips to help you travel safe and well

We all know that most people are scared to travel during this time, but for those that do have to, what can they do to ensure a safer and more enjoyable air travel? We present to you 4 health and wellness tips designed to help your readers travel safe and well!

  1. Healthier meals onboard

The dry environment within an aircraft cabin often makes dehydration a problem, leading to fatigue, headaches and nausea. Onboard its longest Perth-London flights, Australian national carrier Qantas has developed a series new dishes featuring delicious ingredients that have added benefits of hydration, such as green leafy vegetables, cucumber, strawberries and celery. To learn all about the new menu.

  1. Health booster beverages & fine wine selection for relaxation

When consumed in moderation, alcohol can offer travellers some much-needed relaxation and promote healthy sleep. With an award-winning wine selection that includes the likes ofGiant Steps Tarraford Vineyard Syrah (2018), Shaw and Smith Lenswood Vineyard Chardonnay (2017), and Morris of Rutherglen Old Premium Rare Liqueur Muscat, the Qantas Rockpool Sommeliers are proud to present an exceptional selection of wine from boutique producers to iconic brands from across Australia, New Zealand and Champagne.

For customers that don’t fancy the booze, there’s a bespoke herbal tea, which encourages relaxation developed especially for Qantas by Dilmah, made from lemon verbena chamomile and lemongrass. Meanwhile, a hot chocolate bedtime drink with the combination of warm milk and chocolate containing the sleep inducing amino acid Tryptophan help prompt the body’s sleep cycle, while an organic kombucha by Remedy is full of natural probiotics that assist with digestion.

  1. Amenities to promote healthy sleep inflight

From soft-cotton sleepwear designed by renowned Aussie fashion designer Martin Grant to indulgent male and female amenity kits filled with bespoke ASPAR products by Aurora Spa, the Qantas sleep experience in First Class is built around the airline’s anticipation of everything its passengers may require throughout their journey. The bedding down service with Sheridan bedding, a pillow menu, and 100% cotton woven throw, duvet and memory foam mattress are your ticket to a truly peaceful sleep.

  1. Active movement & inflight exercise

Maintaining movement and stretching can work wonders in keeping the body active during a flight, and this was something that travellers took part in last year onboard Qantas’ ultra-long-haul research flights.