(by DeShaun A. Craddock)
Took a trip uptown to talk about some head shots, and went for a walk after. This was right before I headed home for the day.
Enjoy the Travel Deal of the Day, Part Two! Brought to you by The Student Globe Trotter!
Self-Drive Tour of Australia and Fiji Island Escape
11-Day, 8-Night Tour from Pacific Holidays with Roundtrip Airfare, Car Rental, Accommodations, and Some Meals (Link to the Company Website)
What You Get
- $2,299 per person for an 11-day, 8-night tour of Australia and Fiji (up to a $3,590 value). Valid for Travel with a Friend package (two Groupons required), or pay an additional $810 to travel alone. Read about different purchase options here.
Available departure dates: 10/20/12, 10/27/12, 11/17/12, 11/22/12, 11/24/12, 11/29/12, 12/1/12, 1/26/13, 1/31/13, 2/2/13, 2/7/13, 2/9/13, 2/14/13, 2/21/13, 2/28/13, 3/2/13, 3/7/13, 3/14/13, or 3/16/13
Book by: 8/31/12
Included in travel package:
- Round-trip airfare from Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) to Sydney Kingsford-Smith Airport (SYD)
- Seven-day car rental
- Golden Chain Motel Blue Pass, valid for six nights in Australia
- Transportation to Sonaisali Island Resort
- Two nights at Sonaisali Island Resort in Nadi, Fiji, including daily breakfasts
- Airport transfers
Sydney is home to some of Australia’s most legendary attractions, including the Opera House, the Royal Botanic Gardens, and Bondi Beach. But this bustling metropolis on Oz’s southeast coast is just the tip of the island—the eastern seaboard’s diverse landscape includes a renowned wine region, the rustic Blue Mountains, and scenic harbors and rainforests. With this deal from Pacific Holidays, you’ll set your own pace on a self-driving tour of the eastern coast of Australia, before boarding a flight to spend the remainder of the trip in Fiji’s paradise-like setting. Click to view the full 11-day, 8-night itinerary.
Days 1–2: You’ll board an Air Pacific transpacific flight at LAX, and cross the International Date Line on day 2.
Days 3–8: On the third day, visitors arrive in Sydney and transfer to the Thrifty car-rental depot. For the rest of your time in Australia, you have free range to explore Australia’s eastern coast on self-driving tours. With the included six-night Blue Pass, guests can retire to any blue-level Golden Chain motel locations.
You have several options for day trips. A two-hour drive west of Sydney lies the Blue Mountains, named after the bluish hue given off by eucalyptus trees. Hike to the iconic Three Sisters rock formation, or embark on a canyoneering excursion through the mountains’ narrow, fern-covered canyons.
You can also head north into the heart of the Gold Coast, home to Australia’s third-largest city, Brisbane. On the distant outskirts of Brisbane lies the aptly named Surfer’s Paradise, where you can catch world-class waves by day before partying at one of the city’s numerous nightclubs. An off-the-beaten path alternative is Fraser Island, the world’s largest sand island with more than 100 crystal-clear freshwater lakes and ancient rainforests. The eastern coast of the island features the rusted remains of the massive SS Maheno, a steamer ship that ran ashore in 1935.
Day 9: After returning your car to the Thrifty rentals depot, you’ll board a flight to Nadi International Airport (NAN) on the island of Fiji. Upon landing, Pacific Holidays staff provides a transfer to the Sonaisali Island Resort, located across the lagoon, just a three-minute boat ride from the main island of Viti-Levu.
Days 9¬–10: The next two days are left up to you. Lounge on the beach, splash in the lagoon-style pool with swim-up bar, and dine in the hotel’s two restaurants and four bars. Through the hotel, guests can book excursions such as horseback riding, surf tours, or snorkeling.
Day 11: Guests are transferred to NAN for a flight back to LAX, where you will arrive on the same day after crossing over the International Date Line.
Enjoy the Travel Deal of the Day, PART ONE! Brought to you by The Student Globe Trotter! More deals to come!
Greater Cape Town: Wine Country and the Atlantic Beaches
Nine-Day, Seven-Night Cape Town Waterfront and Vineyard Package from Aquila Private Game Reserve with Roundtrip Airfare, Most Meals, and Tours (Link to Company Website)
What You Get
Nine-day, seven-night South African vineyard and safari tour with airfare. Travel with a Friend package (two Groupons required).
- Option 1: $3,468, 8/28–9/10 departures (a $6,699 value)
- Option 2: $2,799, 9/11–10/31 departures (a $6,499 value)
- Option 3: $2,999, 11/1–11/26 departures (a $6,613 value)
- Option 4: $3,513, 11/27–12/10 departures (a $6,813 value)
- Option 5: $4,041, 12/11–12/31 departures (a $7,113 value)
Book by: for 8/28-9/10 departures book by 8/27/12 or two weeks prior to departure (whichever comes first), for 9/11-10/31 departures book by 10/12/12 or two weeks prior to departure (whichever comes first), and for all over departure dates book by 10/12/12.
Included in all options:
- Round-trip airfare from Washington Dulles International Airport (IAD) to Cape Town International Airport (CPT)
- Most meals
- Ground transportation
- Two 4×4 jeep safari tours
- Two horseback-riding safaris
- Wine tour and tasting
South Africa embodies diversity in every sense of the word: though English is now South Africa’s most widely spoken language, the government recognizes 11 official languages, and there are scores of additional dialects linked to sub-Saharan Africa, Europe, and Asia. Over the course of a short drive, you might pass through wildly disparate landscapes reminiscent of Basque wine country, the Australian outback, and the Rocky Mountains. Great white sharks stalk prey near the shores and giraffes graze on its savannas.
The region surrounding Cape Town captures this diversity in particular, and it’s the setting for this seven-night adventure. View the full itinerary here.
Day 1: Arrival
You’ll depart from Washington Dulles International Airport (IAD), stop briefly in Johannesburg, and continue onto Cape Town International Airport (CPT).
Days 2–4: Waterfront Village – Cape Town
The Waterfront Village is situated amid the scenic V&A Waterfront Marina in the heart of Cape Town, right at the base of Table Mountain. You can take a dip in the hotel’s swimming pools, or venture out to explore the nearby waterways, which are lined with restaurants and shops. You’ll stay in a one-bedroom apartment and, each morning, dine on an included breakfast at the nearby One and Only Hotel.
Days 5–6: Aquila Private Game Reserve
Aquila Private Game Reserve, located about two hours from Cape Town, encompasses 7 square miles of southern Karoo Highlands. It’s covered with dramatic peaks, valleys, and a menagerie of big game. On a stop here, you will get to see lions, elephants, giraffes, and many more species during game drives; you’ll also travel by horseback and four-by-four safaris.
The standard luxury chalets here feature thatched roofs, wood interiors, and natural-stone accents. Chalets stand close to the main house, which has two large swimming pools, a cigar bar and lounge, and a buffet-style dining area, where you’ll enjoy three included meals per day.
Days 7–8: Spier Hotel – Stellenbosch
Spier Hotel sits in the heart of Stellenbosch, South Africa’s famed wine region just outside Cape Town. Spier Winery produces an array of award-winning wines, including pinotage, South Africa’s signature varietal. The hotel and winery value sustainability; they have recycled-wood furniture in the tasting room and a magnificent chandelier made from 334 recycled Spier wine bottles.
Contemporary South African art can hangs from the walls in both the standard rooms and the farm-to-table fine-dining restaurant, where you’ll partake in the included daily lunch.
Day 9: Departure
In the morning, you’ll be transported back to CPT. After a brief pit stop in Johannesburg, it’s onward to IAD.