MORE DEPARTURE DATES FOR FLINDERS RANGES OUTBACK TOUR
Due to high demand, Flinders Ranges Odysseys has released additional 2018 and 2019 departure dates for its popular fourday, three-night Flinders Ranges Outback Tour. The tour will now operate more frequently, with additional dates added to the existing fortnightly departures.
The tour explores the spectacular and rugged scenery of Wilpena Pound and the magnificent Flinders Ranges, the largest mountain range in South Australia. The four-Day Flinders Ranges Outback Tour includes all meals, touring and accommodation and guests journey through the Flinders Ranges in luxury air-conditioned Mercedes-Benz vehicles. Groups are deliberately small at up to eight people, and are accompanied by a local tour guide. Accommodation is at the award-winning Rawnsley Park Station in luxurious Eco Villas or one-bedroom Holiday Units, and at the famous Prairie Hotel at Parachilna.
The tour departs from Adelaide and highlights include touring Wilpena Pound and the southern Flinders Ranges, visiting Kanyaka Station Homestead Ruins, the copper mining town of Blinman, and the Nilpena Station Ediacaran Experience which visits a site where the fossils are over 500 million years old. Dining highlights include a Sunset at the Chace Range tour, a three-course Lamb Tasting food experience with wines matched to each course, and the Prairie Hotel’s signature “Feral” Antipasto Platter.
Take a spin down the Path of Philosophy on this Kyoto tour that gives you an overview of the city while using a mode of transport preferred by locals: the humble bicycle. It’s also a way to discover the real life of Japan’s cultural capital: with a history spanning over 1,200 years, the city’s streets have a lot to say.
Start the half-day tour from Kyoto Station, the city’s buzzing railway and transportation hub, by cycling along the Kamo River, taking in the views of the city’s downtown and passing the wealth of traditional riverside restaurants. Call by the Heian-Jjngu Shrine, built in 1895 to commemorate the 1,100th anniversary of the founding of Kyoto. Next, weave your way along quaint canals to reach the impressive Nanzenji Temple. Admire the spacious grounds which have a surprising feature: a scenic aqueduct, with the Higashiyama Mountains as their backdrop. This is one of the most important Zen temples in all of Japan, so soak up the setting before jumping back on your bike and heading off down the Path of Philosophy.
Arguably the most popular walking path in Kyoto, the Path of Philosophy is shaded by hundreds of cherry trees that erupt into bloom every April. It’s a spectacular sight to see then, and rather beautiful the rest of the year as well. It’s a great place to contemplate the tranquillity and beauty of the area, just as one of Japan’s most famous philosophers, Nishida Kitaro, did when he named this route on his daily commute to Kyoto University. And speaking of beauty, the route back towards Kyoto Station takes you along a beautiful canal and traditional narrow back roads lined with old teahouses and traditional bathhouses set amongst the cherry trees.
Australia’s birdlife is diverse and intriguing and Echidna Walkabout gets you up and close to it with knowledgeable guides. The tours take time to watch the birds as well as enjoy the spirit of the environment because a bird is not alone – it needs an ecosystem to support it. Watching leads to understanding, and understanding leads to better protection for the birds.
This style of birdwatching is comfortable. Early morning and late afternoon walks and drives are still recommended but are optional; the middle of the day is for relaxing over lunch and taking a siesta. The tours also allow time for looking at plants, scenery, other animals, people, culture and history where it is relevant and important.
The full-day (lunch included) Tawny Frogmouths and Sandpipers tour is just one of a selection of birdwatching tours on offer. After pick-up in Melbourne by a wildlife guide, the tour travels 45 minutes west of Melbourne to the bushland of You Yangs Regional Park. As well as koala-spotting, the tour looks out for the dry woodland birds that are special to the You Yangs including Tawny Frogmouths. Several pairs nest in the park along with White-winged Choughs, Wedge-tailed Eagles, Common Bronzewings, and many other bird varieties. The area of the tour is of great significance to the local Aboriginal people of the Wathaurong tribe, and the granite rock formations of the You Yangs have staged huge meetings of Aboriginal people from all over Southeastern Australia.
Leaving the You Yangs, the tour travels to the nearby Serendip Wetlands for a walk through the gum trees and grasslands in search of wild mobs of Eastern Grey Kangaroos. The animals are secretive and tours often walk quietly along kangaroo tracks using trees and bushes as shelter. The tour also looks out for Emus and Cape Barren Geese and includes a short walk to a billabong that is home to Magpie Geese, Ducks, Stilts and Spoonbills. Captive breeding populations of Australian Bustards and Brolgas are also managed for conservation purposes on the site.
MEXICO REAL FOOD ADVENTURE
Experience Mexico’s distinctive cuisine while travelling through Oaxaca, Puebla, Mazunte and Mexico City on a Real Food Adventure with Intrepid Travel. This journey through some of the country’s most famous culinary regions gives you the chance to taste authentic Mexican cuisine and takes you to the source of some of the nation’s most iconic foods, from tacos to mole and beyond.
In Oaxaca the tour meanders through the city’s aromatic markets and enters the heart of pre-Hispanic cuisine: taste chiles, chocolate, mezcal and the surprisingly delicious chapulines (grasshoppers).
In Puebla, the city streets are the place to sample local specialties and while a Lucha Libre (theatrical freestyle wrestling) match it may not be edible, it’s an entertaining and memorable cultural experience.
In Mexico City the tour again takes to the streets on a taco crawl to experience a delightful culinary heritage that goes back thousands of years. And then top it all off with a boating expedition out on the Pacific Ocean followed by fresh ceviche on one of the best beaches on Mexico’s southwest coast. If you’re after cultural richness, authentic experiences and flavoursome food that’s tinged with fiesta, this Real Food Adventure is perfect.