Apr
24
2017

Head for the hills for these Blue Mountains attractions

By Australia / New South Wales /

West of Sydney are dozens of Blue Mountains attractions. Whether you want to head to a waterfall, explore an historic town or admire mountain scenery, this pristine region has it all. It’s one of the most famous wilderness areas in Australia and is perfect for nature lovers.

To explore these Blue Mountains attractions, all you have to do is hire a car from Sydney Airport and drive about 60km west of Sydney.

Leura

This charming town is famous for its health spas and cool-climate gardens. Visitors love taking photos of the 19th-century cottages, which make this place feel like a quaint English village. Cherry trees also line the main street, where you can stop to take a break at one of many antique stores, gift shops and cafes. The Toy and Railway Museum is also popular with tourists, especially children. Or if you just wanted to relax by a waterfall, head to the delightful Leura Cascades for a picnic.

Katoomba

Just a few kilometres away from beautiful Leura is Katoomba, which is the largest town in the Blue Mountains. It’s centrally located in the Blue Mountains National Park, making it a great place to base yourself to explore nearby attractions. There’s the Katoomba Scenic Railway, which at 52 decree incline through the Jamison Valley, is the steepest passenger railway in the world. Katoomba is also home to several galleries, second-hand bookstores and restaurants.

Hartley Historic Site

Step back in time with a visit to the Hartley Historic Site. You’ll find this settlement of sandstone buildings and newly renovated historic cottages on the western edge of the Blue Mountains. Explore the stories of the families who lived here and the artefacts spread throughout this important town. Join a guided tour of Hartley for a more in-depth experience.

Govetts Leap Lookout

Enjoy amazing views of the plunging Grose Valley. The views from Govetts Leap Lookout are some of the most stunning in the Blue Mountains. Admire the sandstone cliffs, the lush eucalyptus forest and Bridal Veil Falls. The lookout is easily accessible by car and there are plenty of challenging hikes nearby. You’ll also find Govetts Leap Lookout to be a lot less crowded than Echo Point, which is famous for its views of the Three Sisters.

BRIANNA PIAZZA

Apr
20
2017

Cooling off with some Cairns attractions in summer

By Australia / Cairns /

The fierce heat of summer months in Far North Queensland scare a lot of travellers away from Cairns. What many people don’t realise is there are plenty of Cairns attractions where you can spend your days cooling off. Some of the best Cairns attractions are inland waterfalls and lakes where you can go swimming. Pick up your hire car from Cairns Airport this summer and visit one of these Cairns attractions.

Lake Eacham

Volcanic activity formed the gorgeous Lake Eacham, which is popular among locals. It’s a clear, blue lake in the middle of a cool rainforest. Take the 3.5km walk around the lake or go swimming, canoeing and have a picnic. Because it’s about an hour inland and only accessible by the windy Gillies Range, it’s not on many travellers’ radars. But if you have your own car it’s not an issue getting there.

Josephine Falls

Venture 75km south of Cairns and you’ll encounter one of Australia’s most exciting waterfalls, which is fed by rains cascading down Queensland’s highest mountain, Bartle Frere. It’s consistently ranked as a top favourite among visitors. Swim in crystal clear waters and relax with a picnic lunch on its smooth boulders. You can also slide down the bottom part of the waterfall. Park your car and it’s only a 700-metre walk through rainforest to get to the falls.

Fitzroy Island

Travel 45 minutes by boat and you’ll feel as if you’ve entered an unspoilt, tropical island paradise. Stunning blue waters, an abundance of coral and marine life along with lush forests await. Fitzroy Island has many walking trails that treat you to spectacular views. We recommend doing the 3.6km steep trek to the lighthouse as soon as you get off the boat. Then you can spend the rest of your day relaxing by the cool ocean.

Welcome Bay on Fitzroy Island

Welcome Bay on Fitzroy Island by Riftreef at English Wikipedia CC BY 2.5

Palm Cove

Drive north of the CBD and you’ll be enjoying one of the most famous Cairns attractions (pictured, image by Martin Galivursky 123rf). This quiet, relaxing seaside village is the perfect place to have a meal or coffee on a hot day as you enjoy the cooling sea breeze. After walking past the exotic, distinct palm trees, take a dip in the ocean. Make sure you swim between the nets and wear a stinger suit during summer when stingers are about.

Crystal Cascades

This is one of the most charming waterfalls and the best part about it is it’s right on Cairns’ doorstep. It’s a secluded freshwater swimming hold, hidden in a tropical rainforest at the city’s fringe. Several small waterfalls flow into large pools that you can swim in. There’s also a BBQ and picnic tables for visitors. It’s a scenic drive to get here. Once you’re at the carpark, be prepared to walk for half an hour to the falls.

BRIANNA PIAZZA

Apr
17
2017

Five Melbourne hotels within walking distance of the MCG

By Australia / Melbourne /

Melbourne hotels are in abundance and any footy fan will know there’s always a “good one” just around the corner.  But where to start when heading to the mighty MCG for the match of the day? We’ve just kick five goals straight with these recommendations.

Hire a car from Melbourne Airport and book one of these Melbourne hotels.

Adara Richmond

Adara Richmond is only a 10-15 minute walk from the MCG. It’s hardly a hassle when you’re enjoying contemporary and spacious living in an inner-city serviced apartment. You’ll have full kitchens, washers, driers and high-speed WiFi in your room. There’s no doubt that you’ll feel right at home.

More adarahotelsapartments.com.au/adara-richmond

Quest East Melbourne

Walk just 7 minutes along Wellington Parade after the footy Grand Final and you’ll be right at home. Quest proudly advertises its apartments as “a home away from home” and that’s just how you should look at it. Guests have separate living, fining and sleeping areas, plus all the kitchen facilities to do their own cooking. You could easily stay here for weeks and never feel like you left home.

More questapartments.com.au

Mantra on Jolimont

Mantra is set right in the heart of Melbourne’s sporting and entertainment hub. It’s literally right opposite the Melbourne Cricket Ground and the CBD is also within close walking distance. It really is the ideal choice when looking for accommodation for events at the MCG, AAMI Park, Hiense and Rod Laver Arena. Have your pick from studio, one or two bedroom apartments at this prime location.

More mantra.com.au

Richmond Hill Hotel

The Richmond Hill Hotel is close to the MCG as well as many iconic Richmond Pubs. This makes the Richmond Hill Hotel the perfect location if you want to head out to celebrate after the game (and hopefully you’ll be celebrating a win!). The rooms are cosy and charming. Not to mention, you’re also close to Bridge Road, which is a shopper’s paradise.

More richmondhillhotel.com

Park Hyatt Melbourne

Your accommodation overlooks St Patrick’s Cathedral and Fitzroy Gardens, to name a few beautiful sights. You’ll feel elegant as you enjoy luxurious accommodation right in the heart of Melbourne city. It has close to 250 rooms with walk in robes and Italian marble bathrooms. It’s one of the best places to come home to after an intense grand final. Best of all, it’s only a 15 minute walk to the MCG – even less if you choose to drive!

More melbourne.park.hyatt.com/en/hotel/home.html

BRIANNA PIAZZA and SCOTT PODMORE

Apr
12
2017

The sun is back! 5 London day trip ideas

By UK /

Summer is the best time to go on one of many famous London day trips. The best thing about London day trips is that you get to explore the region at your own place while also taking in the impeccable scenery. Whether you prefer the rolling green hills as you journey inland, or the peaceful beach towns as you travel along the coast, take your pick from on of these great London day trips. Just hire a car from Heathrow Airport and begin your adventure. 

Harry Potter Warner Bros Studio Tour

Any passionate Harry Potter fan will tell you this is by far one of the best London day trips. Visit Studios Leavesden where all eight Harry Potter films were produced. It’ll help you see how JK Rowling’s incredible world of magic came to life. You’ll get to step onto original sets, walk through Hogwarts and come face to face with the animatronic creatures. Best of all it’s just a 45 minute drive from London.

Bath

Drive just two hours west of London and you’ll discover this incredible and unique city. Georgian architecture is found on every corner. So are trendy cafes and restaurants. You’ll quickly understand why it has been named a UNESCO World Heritage site. After exploring the city, make the time to visit the Roman Baths and bathe in naturally hot spa water.

The Cotswolds

This region west of London covers nearly 200 square kilometres and it runs through five counties. Each has its own unique features. The Cotswolds is home so some of the most unspoilt and historic towns in England. The golden stone buildings in the countryside, surrounded by green fields, are so charming. There are palaces, castles, ancient woodlands and lakes to explore. Visit historical market towns like Tetbury and Cirencester. Snowshill is another famous town that you should stop by during your self drive of the region.

Oxford

This charming city is a must-visit. Oxford is home to several different types of beautiful architecture. For example, there’s the 44m high bell tower, which was completed in 1509 at Magdalen College. The English Gothic masterpiece is the tallest structure in Oxford. There’s also Baroque, Neoclassical and Palladian beauties to admire. Other great attractions include the lush Botanic Garden, which is the oldest in all of England, and the Pitt Rivers Museum, with 20,000 knick-knacks from across the world on display.

Lake District National Park

England’s Lake District is a truly magnificent region – one which you must not leave England without seeing. You can drive or take a three and a half hour train ride to get to the area. Windermere is a great place to base yourself. Join a boat tour across the gorgeous Lake Windermere. Walk up to Orrest Head to enjoy panoramic views of the Lake District. The area is also home to beaches and England’s highest mountain, Scafell Pike at 978 metres tall.

BRIANNA PIAZZA

Apr
11
2017

5 of the best hotels for business travel in Melbourne

By Australia / Melbourne /

Melbourne is a great city for the business traveller. The place has some of the best hotels for those in the business world. If you’re heading here soon for work, then hire a car from Melbourne Airport and head to one of these hotels in the city.

Rydges on Swanston (pictured)

Rydges Melbourne is a great venue for guests, whether they’re staying for leisure or business travel. The hotel staff can assist with whatever you need for your work-related stay. Whether you are hosting a conference or organising an intimate board meeting, Rydges have some excellent conference facilities. The stylish and modern rooms come with beautiful city views and large, work desks. Set on the city fringe, it’s super close to a foodie’s dream precinct – Lygon Street in Carlton.

Pullman Melbourne Albert Park

Stay at the Pullman at Albert Park if you want to be in the perfect location for discovering restaurants, shopping and cultural attractions. These features make it sound like a place to stay only if you’re wanting to socialise or enjoy a holiday. But these attractions also make it a great place to base yourself to really network and impress your clients. Not only that, but the Pullman also offers a wonderful conference centre. There’s also a modern lounge with fast internet and a comfortable working space.

Sofitel Melbourne on Collins

This 5 star Melbourne hotel is set in the heart of the CBD. The venue puts you right in the thick of the city’s business world. You’re within walking distance (or at least a quick tram ride) from most of Melbourne’s largest companies, with many of them also having an international presence. Rooms at the hotel also feature a large work desk and internet, so you can work with ease if you have to bring work home with you at the end of the day.

Melbourne Marriott Hotel

Across the world, the Marriott is synonymous with luxury. That’s part of the reason why it’s such a pleasure to stay here. You can really unwind after a hard day at work with a heated indoor pool, gym and scenic views of the Melbourne skyline. Not to mention guests have easy access to businesses in the city centre. The Marriott has a boardroom, meeting rooms and a full-serviced business centre. It’s easy because all of your business associates can come straight to you!

Crown business centre

The iconic golden crown image of the Crown Hotel is synonymous with Southbank. Its hotel rooms are stylish, modern and affordable. It has a top class Business Centre, which should be your first priority when you’re travelling for business. There are two meeting rooms – an executive meeting room which holds 14 people and a smaller meeting room for up to six people. Both are equipped with the latest technology to make your meetings run smoothly.

BRIANNA PIAZZA

Apr
05
2017

5 of the best premium hotels for business travel in Sydney

By Australia / Sydney /

Sydney is home to some of the best hotels for business travel in all of Australia. When you’re travelling for business you’ll want easy and reliable access to the internet and conference spaces. You’ll also need to be located close to the city centre so you can travel with ease to your meetings.

Hire a car in Sydney and book one of these hotels for your next business trip.

Shangri-La Hotel

Talk about business perks coupled with ultimate luxury. The Shangi-La Hotel is right in the heart of Sydney, which makes it the perfect base for any business trip where you have to travel from one company office to another. It also treats you to superb views of the skyline from your hotel room. Wake up to the sight of the Sydney Opera House. Relax with a spa treatment after a long day in meetings.

Sydney Harbour Marriott Hotel

This gem of a hotel at Circular Quay is great for business travel. Service and luxury are at the forefront of hotel staff’s minds. You’ll have spacious, modern suites and awe-inspiring views of Sydney Harbour. It’s a high-end hotel for hosting meetings and events. You’ll also have all of the amenities and business services available at your fingertips so your work is not only efficiently completed, but enjoyable at the same time.

The Sebel Darling Harbour The Pinnacle

The Sebel is all about style, sophistication and convenience. It’s set on the south side of the harbour, which makes it right in the heart of the CBD. Ultimo, Surry Hills and Darling Harbour are right on your doorstep. If you want to take a break after work and get some exercise then the lush Royal Botanic Gardens are nearby. All of your required work amenities, including internet access and a quiet space to work, are available at the Sebel.

Adina Apartment Hotel

Another centrally located hotel to spend your days in Sydney is Adina. You’re just footsteps away from world-class attractions at Darling Harbour. This makes it a great spot to stay if you want to entertain your business associates after work hours. But Adina’s accommodation also offers you a place to relax after work that’s quite like your own home with everything you need. Right on hand are meeting rooms, internet kiosks, presentation technology and free, high-speed WiFi.

Four Seasons Hotel

Set in the heart of Sydney along George Street is the Four Seasons Hotel. You’ll find beautiful places like The Rocks nearby, where you can unwind after work ends for the day. However, this hotel is so much more than location. The business services it provides guests are impeccable. As we all know, in business you need to be ready to meet deadlines at any hour of the day. Here, you’ll have access to computer and printers 24/7 along with wireless high-speed internet access. There’s also a boardroom and professional staff on hand to help you with any queries about the facilities.