Sunday, 28 September 2014

Hope Estate – Hunter Valley Wine Tours

Sip and swirl in one of Australia’s most beautiful regions with the Hunter Valley Wine Tours. With its lush rolling fields of gold and green, sprawling vineyards and open cellar doors, the Hunter Valley is the perfect place to while away the day.

On the Hunter Valley Wine Tour you can inspire all your senses in the majesty of Hope Estate. Nestled against a backdrop of woven countryside colours you can sip a cool glass of chardonnay, indulge in fine dining and gaze across the breath-taking vistas of tangled vine and deep cut valleys.

World Class Wines

With fertile red soil, cool breezes and Victorian inspired vineyards, Hope Estate is world renowned for its evocative wines pressed from branch to bottle. The maritime climate produces select, boutique and truly beautiful deep bodied reds and zesty, bright whites including Shiraz, Semillon, Chardonnay and Verdelho.

The carefully curated Kyneton vineyards bring a delicate note to the palate with its remarkable Virgin Hills. Resonating old world style one sip will transport you to the cobbled streets of Europe’s greatest cities with its fiery hues spilling the essence of sweet cherry, autumnal berries and finishing notes of coffee and tobacco. Be sure to pour a glass of the Donnybrook vineyards best – The Ripper. Only the ripest fat fruits are plucked from nature to create this astounding bottle with its fragrant dark berries, dried mountain fresh herbs and crescendo of spice.

Divine Dining in Seasonal Style

The Hope Estate not only delivers delectable sommelier style but when it comes to fine dining, the Harvest

Restaurant can perfectly match plate to palate. Grab a table overlooking the sparkling lakes and let your tongue savour every second of the fresh seasonal dishes crafted with love from Chef Mert Tansu. You can start with seared sea scallops sprinkled with a citrus essence and served with a garden fresh herb salad, move on to melt in the mouth homemade gnocchi with wild mushrooms and truffle cream. Finish with coconut Panna Cotta and late harvested poached pineapples to freshen your senses. The elegance of Harvest Restaurant can be found in its inspired dishes that perfectly complement the home grown wines.

Smoked Pizzas and Craft Beers

In the heart of Hope Estate guests can keep things simple and choose to taste locally crafted beers paired with wood smoked pizzas fresh from the oven. Using the seasonal bounty from Mother Nature you can wash down each slice with a range of fresh hoppy beers ranging from caramel notes to mead and honey.

One of the best ways to discover the cellar doors of Hope Estate is to choose the Hunter Valley Wine Tour. Offering a full day excursion across the best vineyards in the area you can explore your senses with fresh local produce, fine wines and learn the best kept secrets of the sommeliers.

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Thursday, 25 September 2014

Top 10 things to do in Cairns & Surrounds

Cairns is the adventure playground of the world and basks in sweet balmy sunshine all year round. Whether you are looking to kick back on sugary white sands, snorkel the majestic Great Barrier Reef or trek through lush jungle, Cairns has it all. Take a sneaky peek at the best things to do in Cairns and start planning the trip of a lifetime.

1. Great Barrier Reef Cruise
The rainbow delights of the Great Barrier Reef are a must for anyone looking for things to do in Cairns. Take a cruise across one of the seven wonders of the natural world dive down to explore the rich marine life and discover the bright coral gardens that sit beneath the shimmering hues of blue.

2.  Daintree Rainforest/Cape Tribulation Tour
Take a tour of the emerald Daintree Rainforest and see the heady sights of the gorgeous Cape Tribulation. Trek through verdant virginal forests littered with luminous butterflies, watch crocodiles slide from the river banks and stand in awe at the mythical Mossman Gorge with this evocative day tour.

3.  Green Island Tour
Leave civilisation behind and seek your own perfect piece of paradise with a dreamy Green Island tour. The Green Island National Park is a smorgasbord of beauty packed with coral cays, secret beaches and breath-taking eco walks. Spend the day hiking through the carved landscape and snorkelling in crystal clear waters.

4.  Atherton Tablelands Tour
One of the best things to do in Cairns has to be the Atherton Tablelands Tour. Get wet and wild in this natural playground of cascading waterfalls, sparkling lakes and swimming holes. Cool off in soft lit lagoons, listen to the sounds of the rainforest and watch kangaroos and platypus tumble and play in this unique environment.

 5. Cairns Harbour Sunset Cruise
Witness a flaming sunset of gold and red as you sail in style around Cairns harbour. There’s no better way to end a day then with a drink in hand watching the sun sink like a stone and seeing the bright lights of Cairns twinkle afterhours.

6. Kuranda Scenic Railway and Skyrail Rainforest Cableway
Take the train ride of your life to the hillside gem of Kuranda, the rainforest village. After exploring the galleries and markets you can slide down on the Skyrail cableway. The gondolas glide above the rainforest delivering breath-taking views before sweeping down into the canopy.
7. Tjapukai Aboriginal Cultural Park
Looking for culture in Cairns? One of the most fascinating things to do in Cairns has to be the Tjapukai Aboriginal Park. Spend time with the indigenous people of the rainforest, play didgeridoos, listen to ancient folk lore tales around the campfire and witness a real life Quinkan spirit performance.
8. AJ Hackett Bungee
The ultimate adventure is yours for the taking with the Aj Hackett Bungee jump. The jump was actually invented by Aj Hackett himself and in the heart of the rainforest you can take the fifty metre dive into the unknown with one of the world’s most exciting bungee jumps. Those who don’t fancy the dive can play on the giant jungle swing, watch live bands and devour wood smoked pizza straight from the oven.
9. Australian Butterfly Sanctuary
When you want to take a moment to catch your breath be sure to head to the serenity of the Australian Butterfly Sanctuary. This is one of the most beautiful things to do in Cairns as brightly painted butterflies flit before your eyes, perch on your shoulders and create a kaleidoscope of colour.
10. Cairns Markets
Rusty’s Markets can be found in the city centre and are the perfect place to discover the gourmet delights and bright trinkets of Cairns. The stalls are laden with jewelled fruits, freshly cut flowers, thick scented local coffee, ripe wheels of cheese and a multitude of goodies that will have you delving in your pockets.

Wednesday, 24 September 2014

Diving on the Great Barrier Reef

The Great Barrier Reef is one of the natural wonders of the world and with its shimmering coral coves, gin coloured waters and underwater gardens teeming with rich marine life, it’s not hard to see why. Every year travellers come from all corners of the far flung globe to bask in the rare beauty of Australia’s national treasure.  Many people chose to snorkel, to sail or even to drift above the reefs on a hot air balloon but there is only one way to make the most of this tropical water playground that stretches for miles and that is with Great Barrier Reef scuba diving.

Warm Waters with Pristine Vision

Nothing can compare to letting the warm waters close over your head as you sink down to the sea bed and discover drifting mantra, giant stingrays, scores of tropical fish flitting between your feet and blooming coral gardens. Scuba diving the Great Barrier Reef can be perfect for novices and experts with a range of pristine locations delivering exceptional visibility, nocturnal dives and even wall dives for those who want to cling to the edge of the underwater world.

The Best of the Underwater Worlds

The Osprey Reef is one of the best dive sites in the whole world and a must see when it comes to Great Barrier Reef scuba diving. The blooming soft coral trees, scuttling crabs and rainbow runners greet you as soon as you sink down. Yet those divers wanting to see serious shark action can paddle their way to North Horn to see silver tips, reef sharks and morays.

Agincourt Reef is another must explore spot in the Great Barrier Reef. A handful of major attractions can be found along this stretch of coral such as Point Break, Fish Bowl and the Three Sisters. With cathedral like underwater canyons, narrow passages and climbing towers you are sure to be awed. Watch for clownfish, lionfish, barracuda and even drifting green sea turtles.

Charter Tours and Sunsets

One of the best ways to indulge in scuba diving the Great Barrier Reef is to choose a liveaboard tour that will charter you to a selection of the very best dive sites scattered across the reef. Imagine waking in the morning, indulging in breakfast on board with sea views at every turn. With a Scuba tour of the Great Barrier Reef you can spend the afternoons plunging into blissful blue beauty and evenings watching glistening sunsets stream their colours across the waters.

Tuesday, 23 September 2014

Tour of the Week – 1 Day Daintree Rainforest Tour

Discover a world encased in shimmering greens and blues with a Daintree tour of the oldest tropical rainforest on earth. Imagine standing beneath a canopy of thick jungle foliage as butterflies flood the air, watching for slit eyed crocodiles in the dense mangrove swamps and running across pristine virgin sands to dive into crystal clear waters – this is Mother Nature in her best dress and this is the Daintree rainforest. Daintree rainforest tours whisk you away to a world heritage site that lives and breathes and ignites all the senses. The tropical wonderland is awash with colour, sights and sounds providing a once in a lifetime experience to embrace the beauty of Daintree and Cape Tribulation.

Natures Greatest Show
As the sun starts to rise you can leave Cairns behind and lose yourself in the heady scent of the rainforest. Sit on the banks of the sweeping Daintree River sipping tea and watching snakes coil around the branches of overhanging trees. Hear the songs of exotic bright plumed birds as they push their bills into the riverbanks searching for breakfast and watch the striped possum’s splash in the shallows.

Wind Down the River
A highlight of Daintree Rainforest Tours is the chance to glide down the winding river on a wildlife cruise. This is one of the best ways to see crocodiles in their natural habitat basking on the cool muddy banks. After exploring the majestic Daintree by water a local biologist is waiting to take you to the dark heart of the jungle. The Marrdja Botanical Boardwalk will transport you on a journey back in time, to when dinosaurs walked the earth, with its evocative display of ancient flora. Ramble beside the gin coloured streams, climb over sprawling roots and admire the blood red flowers breaking through the foliage.

Discover Blissful Beaches
Delightful Daintree tours take you from the dense heat of the jungle to splash in the rich coral waters of Cape Tribulation. Cool in the jewelled waters against a backdrop of rising mountains and tumbling greenery that races down to greet the shore. Linger over a picnic lunch, watch marine life teem around your feet and climb to the top of the Alexandra Range for breath taking views.

Myth and Magic at Mossman Gorge
End the perfect afternoon discovering the rich heritage and divine beauty of the Mossman Gorge. Tumbling waterfalls, shimmering lagoons and a landscape steeped in myth and magic make you feel as though you have stepped into a fairy-tale.
Daintree tours blend natural beauty with backpacker exploration; get ready to embrace the excitement of Australia’s wilderness in the tropical surroundings of the Daintree Rainforest. 

So what are you waiting for book your 1 day Daintree Rainforest Tour now