Monday, 10 December 2007


YOUR WEEKLY TRAVEL TIPS for week beginning December 10 2007

travellers good buys: with david ellis


FOR something really different in cruising, join adventure operator
North Star Cruises' True North and go swimming in January with
man-eating White Pointer sharks. Guests are lowered into the water in
a metal cage in the waters off Port Lincoln, South Australia…. where
scenes for the movie 'Jaws' were filmed… and within minutes the White
Pointers begin circling. Price for 8-nights aboard the 36-passenger
True North start from $6,995pp and includes all meals and excursions;
she sails from Ceduna for Cape Jervis to visit the McLaren Vale wine
region, Kangaroo Island, Port Lincoln, Coffin Bay, the Pearson
Islands, and Saint Francis Island. The shark swimming is a free
option; for details phone (08) 9192 1829 or visit

LET Santa get the Christmas rush out of the way and visit him in his
"official home" at Rovaniemi in Finnish Lapland in February. Student
Flights' 7-night package from Helsinki includes breakfasts daily, a
Sauna Party, an icy river swim, a visit to the Kemi Snow Castle, and a
meeting with the Jolly Old Man at his Santa Claus Village. The tour
departs Helsinki on February 10 and is priced from $1159pp; air to
Helsinki is extra. Phone 1800 069 063 or visit

THOSE visiting Alice Springs by rail will find a pleasant new entrance
to the town from the end of this year: a 400m interactive Discovery
Walkway from the railway station to the CDB will be lined by exhibit
boards featuring the art, history and topography of Alice Springs.
There'll also be seating amid native plants along the Discovery
Walkway, that's costing the Territory Government $330,000 and Great
Southern Railway $100,000.

TRAFALGAR Tours have released 41 Europe and Britain holidays under
their CostSaver 2008 banner. As an example an 11-day The Elizabethan
takes-in London, Plymouth, Cardiff, Glasgow, the Scottish Highlands,
Edinburgh, Leeds, Cambridge and other popular destinations and costs
from $2099pp twin-share. There are departures between April 22 and
October 14 2008; air to the UK is additional. See travel agents or

GET around the Greek Islands on fast-ferry Island Hopping packages
from Tempo Holidays between April and October next year. They start
from 10-nights priced from $1286 (plus air) including 2-nights in
centrally-located hotels in Athens, three in Mykonos, and four in
Santorini, breakfasts, transfers and fast-ferry tickets. Phone 1300
558 987 or see

FOUR nights in a 2-bedroom BreakFree Reef Club apartment at Port
Douglas costs from just $376 per adult, with children 3-12 years free,
on select dates between January 4 and March 31 2008. This package is
available through travel agents, or Qantas Holidays on 13 14 15 who
can also arrange best-possible seasonal airfares.

TRUE: Several hundred Brits have just paid up to $16,000 each for a
two-week cruise on which they didn't know where they were going. They
were told only that the boutique Saga Rose would sail from Southampton
for eight ports not on the UK mainland, and which would remain a
mystery until they got there. The inquisitive cruisers snapped-up all
cabins in several days.