Monday, 14 September 2009

Meet the Queen in Tokyo


John Crook

An exiting barging tour

Aniodi is a name made famous by the popular BBC TV series, Rick Stein's French Odyssey, and now you have the chance to undertake a special six-week voyage aboard the very same barge, taking in Lyon, Paris and Cologne.  Journey the wonderful waterways of the Rhone, Seine and Rhine and onwards through enchanting waterways such as  Canal de Bourgogne.  This is no ordinary river cruise, - it is a memory making luxurious experience.  The best way to approach this, and other inclusive hotel-barge tours, is first of all visit

Tassie wine on show

The IXL Atrium, at the Henry Jones Art Hotel,  is the home base of the Southern Tasmanian white wine weekend, October 10 and 11.  It will host 21 winemakers showcasing 60 varieties of white wine.  Entry costs $15 for adults and that includes wine tastings and a tasting booklet. For more information telephone (03) 6248 5367.

Melbourne's Dali

To a spot of culture and luxury! The Langham Melbourne has a Dali day/night package priced from $515 and that includes overnight and all day five-star accommodation, a pre-Gallery supper in Aria bar and lounge, in-room dining breakfast on either Sunday morning or Sunday evening served with a complimentary bottle of wine, two 'away with the fairies' sleeping masks and valet parking. This is a one-night stand.  Check in from 8:00pm Saturday October 3 and late check out until 8:00pm Sunday October 4.

This allows guests to enjoy a night with Dali.   That can extend to all night with Dali as the National Gallery of Victoria's Dali exhibition will be open all night on Saturday October 3.   Tariff does not include entry to the NGV, which is right next door to the Langham. For all the details and conditions telephone 1800 858 662 or email 

Book this way for Venice

Thinking of doing Venice ?  Then, check this out. Now there is a much easier way to holiday in Venice, with thanks to Venice Connected, a new on-line reservation system set up by the City of Venice.  The address is   This offers  direct access to book and to buy on-line, saving time and money.  Bookings need to be made 15-days in advance, with prices varying according to low, middle and high seasons.   For more info on Italy go to

Anything planned for February 19 2010 ?

If the social and travel calendar is free at the moment, try this for size. A unique package sees QM2 sailing from Tokyo on that day, calling first into Guam,  then Rabaul, the Whitsundays, Auckland, the Bay of Islands and destination Sydney on March 7.  It is a 19-night fly, cruise and stay package, priced from $6499 per person twin share.  That includes air and taxes ex Sydney, Melbourne, Adelaide or Brisbane. This is not your ordinary cruise,- but one which is rather special.    To get the dull details call 1300 369 848 or visit

Ski Japan. Live it up in Hong Kong

Ski the fabled dry powder at Niseko, then  tour Hong Kong.   Two different areas for sure, but all part of an itinerary which includes skiing in Japan and the night life of Hong Kong.  What a wonderful coincidence in that the tour package also includes a three-night  stopover in Honkers during Hong Kong's Food & Wine Year.  That runs through until March 31 2010. Return airfares flying Cathay Pacific  from Sydney, Brisbane Melbourne, Adelaide or Cairns.  There are quite a few extras included, so check them out and make a booking.   Telephone Skimax (02) 9267 1655. 1300 136 997 or visit


Visual :  QM2.