Monday, 24 September 2007



Week beginning 24 September 2007

travel tips: with david ellis


PAPUA New Guinea is enjoying new prominence amongst more adventurous
holidaymakers, with Kokopo on New Britain finding itself in the
limelight with those wanting to see the shattered remains of the-once
thriving town of Rabaul that was decimated by a massive volcanic
eruption in 1994. With most of Rabaul buried under ash, Kokopo 32km
away became New Britain's new administrative and commercial centre,
and today offers exceptional fishing, diving, Pacific War sites,
history (the remains of 'Queen Emma's' 1880s Gunantambu Mansion is
nearby,) picturesque villages, rainforests, produce markets and of
course tours of what's left of Rabaul. Kokopo Beach Bungalows has 28
bungalows, a licenced restaurant and bar, massage studio and tour
desk; price starts from 363-kina (about AU$160) a night. Details ++
(675) 982 8870 or

THOSE thinking of a sea-change can take inspiration at the place that
gave new meaning to the word for Australians: Barwon Heads at the
mouth of the Barwon River 18km south-east of Geelong, where the local
bridge, shores of the estuary, fishermen's jetty and the Beach House
became features of the popular ABC-TV program. has
self-contained suites at the Hawthorn Suites at 13th Beach Golf Links,
with Spring pricing about to be announced. Phone 1800 002 333 or log
onto for details.

WAGNER and Mark Twain didn't bother autographing the menus at Vienna's
Griechenbeisl Inn in appreciation of the fine dining they'd enjoyed
there, each autographed the walls instead. The Inn is included on a
10-day Albatross Travel Group Austrian White Christmas tour from
Vienna to Salzkammergut Lake District (backdrop to the movie Sound of
Music,) Salzburgerland, Innsbruck and Luzern on December 19. Price
starts from $4489pp twin-share including touring, tips, all
breakfasts, eight dinners and Christmas lunch; air is extra. Details
1300 135 015 or

A BEIJING Olympics package for swim fans includes 4-nights twin-share
at the Novotel Peace Hotel, poolside entry to 20-plus swimming events
including the Women's 200m Freestyle Semis, Men's 200m Freestyle
Final, and heats for the Men's 100m Freestyle and Women's 4 X 200m
Freestyle Relay. There's also sightseeing, most meals and beverages,
airport transfers, bilingual hosts, transfers to and from events, and
a pass to the CoSport Hospitality Centre with its internet café,
lounges, TV live feeds, and food and beverages. Price starts from
$5967pp plus air. Phone Flight Centre 131 600.

TRUE: THREE Norwegian tourists proved not to be exactly Rhodes
Scholars when they decided to book a holiday on the internet to the
sunny beaches of Rhodes in the Greek Islands. They mistyped their
airline booking form and found themselves in Rodez, a medieval town in
inland south-western France that has a 13th century cathedral, a
market place, a factory that makes plastic spoons and kitchen gloves,
and not a beach in sight.