Tuesday, 16 November 2010

Seadream Amazon - Ferrari Drive - Hong Kong Luxury Cruise - Italy Exclusive - Strawberry Pickings -


SEADREAM Yacht Club is to sail two spectacular near-three week adventures on the Amazon River in 2012 with its 112-guest, 5-star mega motor-cruiser SeaDream II.

Departing Bridgetown, Barbados on February 13 2012, SeaDream II will sail 20-days to Manaus and Iquitos, and 20-days back to Barbados via Manaus.

SeaDream's President, Bob Lepisto said: "We're enormously excited to be adding the Amazon to our itinerary in 2012, particularly as our size and maneuverability will allow our yachts to reach tricky spots like Anavilhanas in Brazil and Iquitos in Peru."

An onboard naturalist will give in-depth talks about the great wilderness, and optional excursions and canoe expeditions will showcase Amazonian tribes, museums, markets and the jungle's exotic animal and plant-life.

SeaDream II and twin-sister SeaDream I were recently rated two of the world's top passenger vessels by Berlitz Guide to Cruising & Cruise Ships.

"The expression 'Yachting' is not a sentiment about size; it is a statement about lifestyle aboard our small vessels," Mr Lepisto said. "SeaDream's 56-stateroom mega motor-cruisers offer elegant informality with no need for jackets or ties at dinner, a crew of 95, open bars, wines with lunch and dinner, evening cocktail gatherings, gratuities, all-ocean-view accommodations, and world class dining."

SeaDream II's Amazon Itineraries will showcase the best of the Amazon including Cuxiu Muni, Brazil where guests will have the option to take a night canoe trip in search of crocodiles, snakes and other nocturnal creatures.

In Alter do Chao, Brazil SeaDream hosts their Champagne and Caviar "Splash" on one of Brazil's best beaches and guests may take a riverboat cruise on Maicá Lake to see the rare pink dolphins.

In Manaus, Brazil guest will have the option to go "Flightseeing" in single or twin-engine aircraft, soaring over the Rio Negro, Rio Solimões, the Meeting of the Waters, the Amazon River and the magnificent expanse of jungle below.

And while visiting a small village located on Tupinambarana Island, they'll enjoy a "Boi-Bumba" celebration – an exotic ritual of magic, mystery, passion and faith that's a feast for the eyes and ears.

For further details see your favourite travel agent or visit www.seadream.com


A new self-drive, performance-car day tour of the Gold Coast is making dreams come true for Italian supercar enthusiasts.

The RentADreamCar Drive Day Tour provides the opportunity to drive a Ferrari 360 Modena and a Lamborghini Gallardo.

The tour caters for up to four people and begins with a briefing over coffee in a Ferrari Showroom where drivers' are familiarized with the cars. The self-drive tour follows a pre-planned route taking in winding mountain climbs, highway cruising and a beachside drive.

Designated checkpoints allow participants to take photos, and more importantly, swap cars. Slim, well-fitting shoes are a must, and driver's must be 25 years old and over and have held a valid driver's licence for at least five years.

A full-day tour costs $990 per driver and $790 for non-drivers. Half day tours are also available at $590 per driver and $490 for passengers. Tours run every Sunday or by special arrangement. Call 1300 226 412 or visit www.rentadreamcar.com.au.



A WHOLE fourteen nights being indulged aboard one of the world's most luxurious cruise ships as you sail from Hong Kong to Vietnam, Cambodia, Thailand and Singapore is the centre-piece of a value-priced 16-nights luxury package through ecruising.travel in February and March next year.

Included in the price that's been discounted from $9179 to as low as $6439pp twin-share are return air and taxes from mainland capitals, fourteen nights on the 5-star Seabourn Sojourn that was launched earlier this year and has been described as "amongst the most luxurious in the world," a night pre-cruise in the Peninsula Hotel Hong Kong and another post-cruise at Raffles Hotel Singapore (with transfers included in Singapore.)

Guests will embark Seabourn Sojourn in Hong Kong on February 26 for a night on board, and sail next day for Cai Lan (Hanoi,) Ho Chi Minh City with an overnight in port, Sihanoukville, Laem Chabang (Bangkok,) and Singapore.

For full details phone toll-free 1300 369 848 or visit www.ecruising.travel

ADDITIONAL SHIPBOARD INFORMATION: Dining options range from 5-star avant garde to casual on deck in a choice of four open-seating dining venues – or meals can be taken in-suite – there are six lounges and bars, a two-deck high health spa and salon, gym, saunas, two outdoor pools and six whirlpools, watersports marina, nightly stage shows, and a casino.

There's also an indoor Thalassotherapy pool, sports deck and sun terrace, shops, a vast library and a computer centre.


SIT – Italian travel specialists, have recently released a selection of exclusive small group tours in Italy during the 2011 northern summer with a special discount of $200 per person when you book and deposit by December 20.

There are seven special itineraries ranging from eight to 15 days, which have been specially designed for travel in small groups of no more than 25 people. The guides have been hand picked for their extensive knowledge and familiarity with the local areas.

Tour interests cover dining, walking, wineries, cooking and scenery in regions such as Sicily, Northern Lakes district, Sorrento and Amalfi Coast, Piedmont, Basilicata (Matera) and Liguria (Cinque Terre.) 

An example is the popular eight-day Eastern Sicily Walking Tour, a round trip from Catania which will explore historical town centres, costal villages, archaeological sites and medieval towns. Priced from $2455 per person twin share there are two departures in 2011.

There are more than 15 departures of other tours from May until October and all include four star centrally located accommodation with most meals, a tour leader, comprehensive sight-seeing with local guides and transportation within Italy.

For more details contact SIT on 1300 885 173 or visit www.southernitaliantours.com.au



THEY'RE exquisitely sweet and juicy, and every year thousands of visitors from around the world head to Sunny Ridge Strawberry Farm on the Mornington Peninsula to pick their own succulent strawberries.

The pick-your-own season opened last week, and visitors are expected to weigh in with more than 40 tonnes before the season finishes at the end of April.

Sunny Ridge has been producing strawberries for 35 years, with the Mornington Peninsula's maritime climate and rich soils creating the perfect growing conditions. U-pick is open daily from 9am to 5pm (except Christmas Day and New Years Day), and costs $8 for adults, including 500 gm of strawberries, and $4 for children including 250 gm of strawberries.

On Saturday December 5 and Sunday December 6, Sunny Ridge hosts its second annual family weekend, with attractions for kids including strawberry red balloons, face painting and a petting zoo.

The dessert cafe and strawberry shop are also delicious attractions, including chocolate-dipped strawberries, Belgian chocolate and strawberry fondue, and the Sunny Ridge farm-made icecreams and sorbets which have won seven awards in the last five Royal Melbourne Show Fine Food Awards.

Visitors who buy a Mornington Peninsula Attractions Pass are also entitled to a 10% discount on any desserts and gourmet foods purchased in the shop or cafe.

Sunny Ridge Strawberry Farm is one of seven top attractions in the Attractions Pass, which also includes Ashcombe Maze and Lavender Garden, Box Stallion Winery, Cape Schanck Lightstation, Moonlit Sanctuary Wildlife Conservation Park, Peninsula Hot Springs, and Best Western One Four Nelson.

The pass saves up to 40% on admission and bonuses at four of the attractions and includes discount offers at three more. It costs only $49 for adults (more than $80 full retail value), $39 for children, and can be purchased at www.emmp.net.au or at any participating attraction.

Further information: Joanne Petrillo, Sunny Ridge Strawberry Farm on 03 5989 4501, info@sunnyridge.com.au or www.sunnyridge.com.au