Category Archives: Events
Central Asia, specifically the countries that Australians refer to as “the Stans” – Kazahkstan, Turkmenistan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan – have been a growing tourism location for decades. Originally the majority of visitors were Russian, simply because during the days of Soviet Russia travelling internally was easier for them than externally, with the fall of the USSR the face of tourism in these regions started changing, and while Australians have been travelling there for some time, accessibility – through flights, visa issued, permissions, have always kept the numbers low. With Uzbekistan now allowing for E-visas, and with the ability to get visas on arrival for other, and some waiving them entirely – the region is going to open up like never before, and it is a region that is well worth visiting for a huge range of reasons.
The region is filled with natural wonders in Kyrgyzstan areas like the Golden Spa, or Broken Heart Gorge, are scenic rivals that are comparable to places like the rocky mountains, and the desert landscapes of Eastern Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan have incredible rock formations that are truly remarkable. With some f the worlds oldest inhabited cities, and some of the more incredible Heritage listed sites like Shakisirabz, Bukhara, Khiva and Samarkand you can discover some of the origins of modern astronomy and mathematics, you can discover the cultural growth of the local tribes and the influences of religion in the region, as an integral part of the old silk road the entire region is covered with forts, palaces, temples and museums that leave a person stunned at the wonder – and places like Registan Square (which inspired the tale of a 1001 Arabian Nights) have been doing so for centuries.
When you combine he natural wonders, the ancient cultures and the ancient heritage, it would seem that these destinations have enough for anyone, but their years under Russian and Soviet rule have brought another aspect to travel with regions like old nuclear test zones opening up for travel, the Aral Sea disaster zone, the former Space Center in Kazakhstan from where the USSR launched their initial space missions including that of famed cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin bringing in visitors who love not just modern history, but whom have an intense desire to see man;s impact on the globe and how they can help moving forward – not to mention the every day aspect that Soviet rule had on the region which can still be seen in the older housing communities, as well as the soviet era-esque statues, parks and memorials in major cities like Dashanube.
Central Asia for centuries has been a crossroads for travel – like Turkey, like India, and like Egypt – and has been a cradle for civilization, science and culture, and while in the last century, the control of the region has seen a change in where its visitors and influence has come from its opening boarders is bringing this incredibly diverse ancient, culturally significant and naturally stunning area back into the forefront of thought for travellers. What’s more is that as an area that has seen less press, less coverage and visibility – there is less expectations, you can be floored by what you discover rather than being dissapointed that what you are seeing isn’t exactly as you saw it in the social media posts of a thousand or more other travellers. With many of the destination names meaning little to the average Australian Traveller even seeing where they are going in print is an exercise in exploration that has for the most part become lessened with areas that see much more regular visitors, and for a truly unique experience, a taste of what these destinations are, now is the time to get in and see them, while the infrastructure is being developed, whilst the numbers are low, whilst things are still raw and unedited and free of the filters that mass tourism tends to produce.
Once these lands tied together the wonders of China and the Orient to the realms of Western Europe and the Middle East, through the Silk Road. The “Heart Of The Silk Road” package for 2020 currently being previewed by My Travel Expert for 2020 is the prefect example of the diversity that one can expect to see and encounter within the region, and with a limited group size of 16 becomes the perfect intimate way to discover the area.
The Heart of The Silk Road tour will visit a number of incredible places including Almaty, Karakol, Altyn Arashan, Tamga, Jety Ogyz, Lake Issyk-kul, Bishkek, Tashkent, Samarkand, Shakhrisabz, Bukhara, Chardjou, Merv, Mary, Ashgabat, Kov-Ata, Tashauz, Dashoguz, Urgench & Khiva
This is a small group journey that will run with no more than between 8 to 16 travellers, and will journey through some of the most incredible regions of Central Asia as it journeys through Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan. It should be noted that the group size is limited in part due to he vehicles that will be used to discover the natural wonders of Kyrgyzstan.
Note From The Tour Leader:
This tour will cover the natural, historical and cultural highlights of these zones including Lake Issyk-Kul, Altyn Ashran, the Gate of Hell, Buhkara, Khiva, Registan Square and more. We will also visit some of the most significant cities of the region including Almaty, Bishkek, Tashkent and Ashgabat. This is not a 5 star luxury tour, whilst all the accommodation has been specifically chosen for flavor and experience – we have noted most as a lower category than official sites do, specifically so I do not raise expectations. We will be staying in a range of 3 star boutique hotels, a guest house, and what are officially listed as 5 star hotels but with their faded soviet glory would more appropriately be called a comfortable 4 star (on occasion). The package price is based Almaty to Tashkent and covers most expenses barring visas, tipping and most of the meals outside of breakfast. With the best food available outside local hotels I elected not to include meals so that we can get the best culinary experience whilst travelling.
The package price does not include the main international airfares, I do recommend using the Asiana Options when they become available but have left it open in case people decide to extend or visit other regions while on the road. This is a unique hand-crafted programme designed to take in the best of the region in relative comfort, and I would love to have you join us when we head there! – Regards Daniel
For more information on the Heart of the Silk Road Journey, please click here for the full itinerary!
Or Call My Travel Expert and the Shoalhaven Solo Sisters
on (02) 4421 5577 and ask to speak with Daniel
For those that came down to our tour launch on the 1st November – I hope you had a fantastic night, we sure did! Just seeing the charm of the Star Clippers Fleet, or the untouched lands of Uzbekistan, or the tiered hills of the Douro, absolutely stunning, and truly inspiring – at least we thought so!
To re-cap the night for those that were there, and to let those that were not know what is on offer we will do a brief run through of our tours, and the hyperlinks to the current itineraries (just click on the tour names) and programmes for them!
We have a small selection of day tours leaving from the Shoalhaven to explore areas beyond the local. I should also note that if the Wine Day in the Southern Highlands prove popular we will run others to both the Southern Highlands and nearby in the Shoalhaven. To that end the tours we have on offer are ..
- Vivid 2019. A revamped and updated dinner cruise for the Vivid lights, longer and later than previous years this is guaranteed to give us a fantastic view of the lights.
- Winter Wine Warmer. A visit to the Southern Highlands to get a taste of the local produce from wine to beer and ciders, capped off with a 3 course gourmet lunch.
- Ghosts and Grapes. A fantastic combination of the incredible abandoned town of Joadja and a brief taste of the Southern Highlands Wine Region
- Nepean Belle. A three course luncheon cruise aboard a paddlesteamer along the Nepean River in the lower ranges of the Blue Mountain National Park
For those that are looking to get away for more than a few days but not looking to travel to far we have a great selection of packages coming up from the beautiful Norfolk Island to a taste of luxury with the incredible Celebrity Solstice.
- Come Sail With Me! An incredible week away in Thailand aboard a luxury cruise aboard the tallship Star Clipper with fantastic meals and visiting all the most incredible locations
- Discover Broome. A week away discovering the highlights of one of Australia’s most scenic and secluded destinations.
- Solstice Escape. Join us on a short escape to Melbourne as we experience the luxury of the Celebrity Solstice. The perfect chance to sample this incredible vessel, shop in Melbourne without the worry of baggage weight for flights, or to just enjoy a weekend away.
- Norfolk Exclusive. With great central accommodation, all the sights people know about, plus those they hadn’t expected this tour covers all you could imagine and more for a trip to Norfolk!
For those areas beyond a small flight we have a stand out selection of tours coming in the next two years. Some are available to book now – like our Danube Cruise and Egypt, and others – like Russia and Central Asia are previews only where you can sign up your expression of interest so we can let you know all the details when they come on sale!
- European Gems. The time honored Danube cruise from Budapest to Amsterdam, is a bucket list item for many – and the perfect trip for those looking for good company. With Stops along the Rhine, Main and Danube this is one of Europe’s Must Sees!
- Cradle Of Civilization. There is nowhere quite like Egypt, and this tour not only takes you to the highlights that everyone wants to see, but the true spectacles that many don’t even know are there. Limited to 16 places this tour is filling fast!
- My Hawaii Escape. For 8 years running the Pride of America’s Cruise around the Hawaiian Islands has been voted the “Best Hawaii Itinerary” and this is your chance to experience this stunning voyage.
- Heart Of The Silk Road. Join us as we journey the less travelled paths of the Silk Road exploring some of the most incredible natural landscapes and ancient cities on the planet as we traverse Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, Kyrgyzstan and Turkmenistan
- Jewels Of Russia. Tying together two of Russia’s most incredible destinations (Saint Petersburg and Moscow) a Russian River Cruise is the perfect way to get a look at both the urban and rural life and landscapes of this remarkable destination
- Colours of Spain & Portugal. Visiting the highlights of Spain and Porrtugal and combining them with a Douro River Cruise this package is perhaps one of the best ways to get out and explore the incredible Iberian Peninsula
- Fall Colours Of The East With Canada and New England Cruise. Following on from our West Coast Tour – this trip discovers the incredible cities of Eastern Canada, the beauty of Niagra Falls and New England and the Eastern US Cities like Boston, all around the time that the seasons change bringing about a riot of colour and drama.
What an incredible range of tours and destinations! Again you can preview the programmes by clicking on the tour names above, but if there is any further information wanted on any of these tours, or if you want to book on one of them or register your interest please do not hesitate to contact us at My Travel Expert & Shoalhaven Solo Sisters!
My Travel Expert & Shoalhaven Solo Sisters
P: (02) 4421 5577 E: firstname.lastname@example.org
A: Shope 28a Nowra Mall, Kinghorne Street Nowra NSW 2451
As some of you may be aware, we have opened a satellite office at the St Georges Basin Country Club, which means that any of you living in the area out there, you can now drop in at the satellite office to make payments and deposits rather than needing to come into the office in Nowra each time.
As a bit of a welcome, for everyone to meet the expanded team, including Maree who is returning to us after a 4 year hiatus, we are holding an information session on the 6th September at 10:15am at the Function Room at the St Georges Basin Country Club.
Where we will be talking briefly about what we are doing in 2018 for Group Tours, explaining about the Shoalhaven Solo Sisters Initiative for Solo Travellers, and the benefits our satellite office has to offer club members and locals in the St Georges Basin area. If you would like to attend please RSVP to our St Georges Basin Office on (02) 4442 9077 or by email to email@example.com
As many of you have no doubt heard, in August 2018 we are chartering the Avalon Siem Reap from Avalon Waterways for a private cruise from Siem Reap to Saigon. This has allowed us to package together a Mekong River Cruise with all its highlights with airfare and time and touring in both Siem Reap and Saigon for over a thousand dollars less per person in share twin, then what the programme usually operates for with all those inclusions.
While this is fantastic news for those couples signing aboard, those single travellers though are still left with a huge single supplement – nearly double in cost from the base fare! Having said that, thanks to the Shoalhaven Solo Sisters we can look at doing a “singles match up”, where by pairing you with other single travellers you can the share a cabin and save having to pay any single supplement.
This is the perfect style of trip for such a Match Up. As a chartered vessel all travellers will be from the local region (Shoalhaven) or nearby and as a single group you won’t find yourself feeling the need to spend all of your time with your Cabin-mate, in fact between dining, touring and enjoying watching the world float by from the bar, lounge or Topdeck there is very little cabin time involved for many doing river cruising – so the amount of time you spend with your cabin-mate would be entirely your call on such a voyage!
So if you want to join our Mekong Departure and would like to look at a Singles Match Up, what do you do to get the ball rolling?
Step 1: Call My Travel Expert and the Shoalhaven Solo Sisters on (02) 4421 5577, and let us know that you want to join our Mekong Charter and that you are looking for a singles match up.
My Travel Expert and the Shoalhaven Solo Sisters will then attempt to find another single traveller for you to share with on this cruise departure. If we find someone we move onto step 2 …
Step 2: Catch up with the possible Cabin-Mate, then let My Travel Expert & The Shoalhaven Solo Sisters know whether the match up is acceptable.
Step 3: Pay cruise deposit and proceed down the standard booking path.
What prices would you be looking at to join this Voyage?
Should we be able to match you up with another traveller you would be looking at the standard share twin costing, which is AU$6666.00 per person.
If you decide that despite everything you want a cabin/room all to yourself the single supplement payable in addition to the standard share twin costing is AU$4346.00
This covers your airfare to Siem Reap from Sydney and back from Saigon/Hanoi with all pre-payable taxes, the nights accommodation and touring in Siem Reap, the Cruise from Siem Reap to Ho Chi Minh City (inclusive of all meals and activities) and then the accommodation and touring in Ho Chi Minh City.
If you want to join the Extension to Hanoi and Halong Bay you are looking at a cost of AU$1500.00 per person in share twin if you are matched with another traveller. Should you desire a room/cabin on your own the single supplement cost payable in additional to the share twin rate is AU$571.00
The Extension Cost covers the flight from Ho Chi Minh City (Saigon) to Hanoi, the accommodation in Hanoi, the Cruise on Halong and all the touring in both Locations.
When is this Charter Programme Running?
This is a one off Cruise Charter, for those that do the standard package the Trip will depart Sydney on the 19th August 2018 and arrive back into Sydney on the 2nd September 2018. For those taking the Extension to Hanoi & Halong Bay you will arrive back into Sydney on the 6th September 2018.
If you want to look into a “Singles Match Up”
then call us on (02) 4421 5577 as soon as possible,
as finding a travelling companion may take some time!
You can review the entire voyage here, to see what will be seen, covered and experienced during the entire period of travel including the Extension! Just Click on “read more”!
In 2018 in conjunction with Scenic Tours, we are running a fantastic trip to Canada that will start with a coach pick up from here in Nowra, an overnight at the Rydges Sydney Airport (or similar) so we are not up too early for a 10am departure flight to Vancouver.
Once in Canada we will see the sights of Vancouver and Victoria before heading off through the Rocky Mountains to discover Banff, Lake Louise and more before returning to the coast to take a cruise along the inside passage where we will encounter incredible natural sights, and unique towns like Ketchikan where we can experience the home of the First Nation, or Skagway where we can see the early colonial frontier.
On the 11th May 2018 we are hosting an evening at our office with the always entertaining Cathy from Scenic and would like to invite you to come down and see exactly what it is that we have planned for 2018!
When: 5:30 pm, 11th May 2017
Where: My Travel Expert
Let us know now if you want to come, simply email us at firstname.lastname@example.org or call us on (02) 4421 5577!
Join Us On 2 September As We Discover
Joadja Ghost Town & Distilley
Joadja valley and town is a region of significant cultural heritage. The community at its peak was home to more than 1200 people, mostly Scottish immigrants who lived in tough conditions in an isolated valley. The mine closed and the people that lived here moved away to start somewhere new. The town, the mine and its equipment were left behind, and now stand as a testament to what took place here all that time ago. Nature is slowly but surely taking Joadja back, climbing over the buildings and working its way into the foundations. Come and enjoy the beauty of this stunning valley, hear the stories and feel the history behind it all!
Includes Transfer to and from the Shoalhaven (from designated pick up points), Morning Tea, 90 Minute Guided Ghost Town Walk, BBQ Lunch & Distillery Tour
Joadja Ghost Town & Distillery Tour
$110 Per Person
2nd September 2017
Reserve your space today simply call My Travel Expert on
(02) 4421 5577 or email email@example.com
1 Night / 2 Days, 30 Sep – 1 Oct
Nowra – Canberra- Nowra
$390 Per Person Share Twin Or Double
$530 Per Person In Single
Developed in 1988 as a grand, one off floral tribute to mark Australia’s Bicentenary and Canberra’s 75th anniversary, Floriade has become Canberra’s most iconic annual tourism event and Australia’s premier spring festival. The floral display of more than a million bulbs and annuals planted across 8,000 square metres of inner city parkland is more than just a flower show.
- Illuminated wonderland – Explore the whimsy and the beauty in outdoor lighting design and production, as curated and constructed by the expert team at Mandylights. They’ve designed a parkland – full of impressive lighting installations which will excite and delight the fairy light lover in anyone.
- Roving Entertainment – Be amused and entertained by talented musicians, quirky roving entertainers and circus acts, who will bring the park to life each night. Giant lady bugs, flame twirlers and many many more…
- The Marketplace – To indulge your inner foodie (and food critic), we’ve created the Marketplace; a food, wine and beer bazaar hosted in the The Kitchen Company Tasting Plate, during NightFest. Explore the food and beverage crafts of Bentspoke Brewery, Pialligo estate, Mount Majura vineyard and more, in a melting pot of top local and regional talent.
This 2 day package includes transport to Canberra and Return from the Shoalhaven, time on the Saturday afternoon and Sunday Morning to visit Floriade, a Standard Nightfest Entry Ticket, and One Night Accommodation at the Crowne Plaza Canberra. Costs for upgraded Nightfest Tickets and Breakfast available on request. Spaces are limited
Costs for upgraded Nightfest Tickets, Breakfast and more available on enquiry.
Call My Travel Expert on (02) 4421 5577 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org to reserve your space today or
Welcome to 2017! We all hope that you had a fantastic Christmas and and incredible New Years.
Seeking Travel Companions.
Just a brief update to start the new year, we are still searching for travellers to join others in Japan this April for a Rail Tour, in Canada for a combination East Coast & West Coast Tour in September, and a fantastic Trip to Borneo. New Zealand – We also have a lady looking for a travelling companion, looking to do the South Island over a period of around 10 Days. If this Sounds of Interest please let us know.
Upcoming Group Tours
In the next month we will have our 2017 and 2018 Major Group Departures online – these will include a fantastic Italian Journey this September and an incredible Japan Tour in April 2018 to cover the Cherry Blossom Season. If you would like further information then let is know !
We now have our 2017 Vivid Day Trips available, these include coach from Worrigee, Nowra and Berry to Sydney, and a 3 Course Dinner Cruise that includes free wine, beer and soft drinks. With Departures on 31 May and 07 June 2017 , you can join for only AU$139 ! For more details or to book aboard call us today.
My Travel Expert & Shoalhaven Solo Sisters
(02) 4421 5577 or email@example.com
Whether it is a trip through the heartland of America, the medieval cities of Europe, the ancient cities of South America or the lands of the Maharajah, a lot of people find the thought of how to connect one location with the next, and what to do in those locations exhausting. How to I get from Paris to Cologne? Will I have to wait in a long queue at the Taj Mahal? How many places can I reasonably see in Washington in a day?
Sometimes, when you are ready to experience a location – be in a new country, or part of your own, what you really want is to sit back and relax, enjoy the sights and sounds and let someone else worry about how you get between places, or what you are doing for breakfast. Which is where group touring is a fantastic way to experience locations around the world!
There are large group tour operators who offer a number of destinations across the world – their inclusions range for the all inclusive luxury style packages of APT, Scenic and Insight Vacations, to the good quality programmes of AAT Kings, Travelmarvel, Globus, Wendy Wu Tours and Trafalgar that cover what you want to see but may not include as many meals or drinks.
For the more budget conscious or those who enjoy a bit of adventure, but like the security of having someone there to look after your problems there are slew of operators running everything from small to large groups like Cosmos or Peregrine, or smaller groups and more intimate experiences with companies like G-Adventures or Intrepid.
Then you have your dedicated small group tour operators that use good quality accommodation, and tie off the ability to see fantastic sights with an intimate touring experience, or a unique focus on the touring, such as is available through operators like Back-Roads Touring, the Africa Safari Co, or National Geographic Journeys by G-Adventures.
Africa, Asia, Australia, Europe and the Americas. Small groups, adventurous travel, luxury travel, large groups, short tours and longer voyages. There is a group tour out there for everyone, whether its the desire to hike around the Inca Trail or relax in Luxury as you cruise the Danube, there are group programmes available for every style of traveller – and no better way to let someone else worry about the little things while you enjoy the opportunity to explore, visit and make new connections.
So if exploring the world in good company sounds like something you are interested in then now is the time to come and speak with the wide range of group travel experts that will for one night only be accessible at ..
My Travel Expo.
4pm til 7pm, 22 September 2016,
@ Shoalhaven Ex-Servicemans Club Worrigree.
Call (02) 4421 5577 for more information
From the days or the original Orient Express, travelling the world by Rail has been seen as a luxury and ultimate travel experience, and whilst the glamour of rail journeys may have faded a bit there is still an incredible array of rail journeys out there for the traveller to enjoy, from the luxury journeys of the Palace on Wheels or Rovos Rail to the incredible vistas offered by journeys like the Copper Canyon Run in Mexico or the Rocky Mountaineer in Canada.
With partners like Sundowners Overland, Scenic, APT, Adventureworld, the Africa Safari Co, South America Tourism Office, Sunlover Holidays, AAT Kings, Globus and others, we can offer Rail journeys from around the world to tempt you!
Perhaps the most famous of the Rail Journeys at the moment are those that take a few days, covering several destinations, usually in some of the most scenic places on earth, rail journeys like the ..
The Ghan and the Indian Pacific, are Australia’s two premier rail journeys crossing the country south to north, and east to west respectively, these trains provide a comfortable way to visit and experience the vast reaches of Australia’s Outback and the Red Centre.
Trans- Siberian and Trans-Mongolian, starting from Vladivostok, Beijing or Ulaanbaatar , this is perhaps one of the worlds most renown voyages travelling from the pacific coast all the way through to Moscow and Saint Petersburg. Travelling via places like Yekaterinburg and Lake Baikal the sights available as you transit the Siberian Tundra is absolutely incredible!
The Rocky Mountaineer, is perhaps one of the worlds most famous rail journeys covering the mountainous peaks of Rocky Mountains it is a must inclusion for those that love the sweeping vistas and the possibility of wildlife sightseeing. Available as a one way trip from Vancouver to Banff or as a return journey this is one way to see the mighty Rocky Mountains in comfort.
Rovos Rail and the Blue Train, are synonymous with the world Luxury, and a journey aboard either of these trains hearkens back to the days of true luxury rail voyages. An incredible way to get not only a taste of Rail Heritage but a look at some of the more incredible places in Southern Africa, Rovos Rail and the Blue Train are experiences to be savoured.
“El Chepe” the Copper Canyon train, is a fantastic way to explore the Grand Canyon of Latin America, with travel by rail and accommodation at some of the most incredible natural sights in Mexico. With cliff side hotels, local cultural visits, historic sites and natural wonders, this programme is a truly incredible voyage.
These are just a few of the multi night rail journeys available with dozens more available such as, The Devils Snout, covering the Volcanic Regions and Mountains of Ecuador. The Royal Scotsman covering the Scottish Highlands. The Oriental Express, from Singapore to Bangkok. The Royal Rajasthan, and several other trains, that cover the land of the Maharajahs – Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh and Uttar Pradesh. The classic Orient Express running between Venice and London, and so , so many more across the world.
Rail Journeys are not limited to just multi-day voyages with some of the worlds award winning trains being trips that take much shorter runs – overnight, a day a few hours. These shorter range journeys are usually that highlight either scenic locations, or are a fantastic way to use a overnight trip to get you between locations such as the Glacier Express in Switzerland, the varying trains that run from Cuzco to Machu Picchu, the Kuranda Scenic Railway in Cairns, the Carson-Wagonlit experience of an overnight train from Aswan to Cairo of the Victoria Trains between Hanoi and Sapa, plus dozens of others world over.
With partners like Sundowners Overland, Scenic, APT, Adventureworld, the Africa Safari Co, South America Tourism Office, Sunlover Holidays, AAT Kings and Globus we can help you embark on nearly any rail journey across the world, and if you are a lover of locomotive travel then now is your chance to speak with the experts at ..