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2017

INDIA & THE ORIENT


The Temples of Bagan, Myanmar

the rich golden hues revealed the temples in their best light

66

India & The Orient


Experience the inspiration of travel Travel has the ability to take us away from the ordinary; the every day. It enables us to see the world through new eyes and understand our place in it. Whether to remote destinations which are off the beaten track or to well-trodden sophisticated urban centres, there are new experiences to be had and local cultures to absorb. When you put yourself in the hands of A&K, you do so in the knowledge that for over 50 years we have been building a global business taking you to destinations near and far in seamless style and comfort. We make sure everything is organised so you don’t need to lift a finger, even in the most rugged locations. You’ll be put up in the most fitting lodgings whether an elegant palace hotel, an outback station or a traditional felt tent. Luxury for us is the quality of the service and the experiences you’ll have. No matter how or where you travel, we will ensure your holiday includes just the right amount of activity and adventure, the most suitable modes of transport, meals that reflect the local cuisine and leisure time when it’s needed most. You can feel perfectly comfortable and secure with the backing of our 52 offices worldwide and over 2,000 staff whose number one goal is your satisfaction. Find an inspiring collection of travel ideas right here and let us deliver what we do best.

Geoffrey Kent Founder, Chairman and CEO of the Abercrombie & Kent Group of Companies @geoffrey_kent

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Mir-i-Arab Madrasa, Bukhara, Uzbekistan

as we wandered through the gates a wealth of ornate tilework and mosaics was revealed


Contents A&K Philanthropy

4

The A&K Difference

6

Qantas Frequent Flyer

8

Map 10 India & Beyond 12 India 14 Sri Lanka 22 Bhutan 26 Nepal 27 Hosted Small Group Journeys

28

India & Beyond Hotels

30

The Maldives 32 The Orient 36 China 38 Uzbekistan 44 Mongolia 45 Myanmar 46 Vietnam 50 Vietnam & Cambodia 52 Cambodia 55 Laos 56 Thailand 57 Japan 58 Hosted Small Group Journeys

60

Orient Hotels

62

Terms & Conditions

64

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Sam’s Brothers Clean Water Project

access to clean water is a privilege we take for granted


Abercrombie & Kent Philanthropy A deep-rooted consideration for the natural world infuses each and every Abercrombie & Kent journey. A&K believes passionately that travel should both respect the natural environment and benefit the indigenous peoples whose lands we visit. For over 30 years, A&K has been intimately involved in the support of these communities, their environments and their ecosystems. Abercrombie & Kent Philanthropy, guided by Vice Chairman Jorie Butler Kent, facilitates our commitment to socially and ecologically responsible travel worldwide, as well as helping our guests to become actively involved in these efforts. Every Abercrombie & Kent office plays an important hands-on role in its community, proudly sponsoring projects directly benefiting the local people and environment. In Sri Lanka, Project Leopard aims to protect the leopard population of Yala National Park by reducing humanleopard conflict in bordering communities. To prevent the local cattle farmers from killing leopards to protect their livestock, AKP contributes steel enclosures for sheltering cattle at night. At New Delhi’s Deepalaya, with assistance from AKP, destitute and handicapped students learn vocational skills for employment in computers, beauty, culture, airconditioning/refrigeration and electronics. In Cambodia’s Siem Reap area, A&K Philanthropy works with Sam’s Brothers Clean Water Project constructing simple wells which provide families and local communities in rural Cambodia with access to clean, bacteria-free water. AKP also helps improve the quality of life for locals in the small Myanmar village of Sin Kyun where a library and house for an English teacher has been provided. Tourism has the potential to enrich yet also threaten the fabric and spirit of fragile destinations. Travellers have the opportunity to visit and be personally involved in these projects. Programmes marked with a represent opportunities for travellers to be personally involved in these projects. For further information please visit www.abercrombiekent.com.au/philanthropy

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Siesta on a sandbank, Baros, Maldives

delivered by dhow to a perfect sand bank in the middle of the Indian Ocean


The A&K Difference 50 YEARS & COUNTING

A GLOBAL NETWORK

For over half a century, Abercrombie & Kent has been a pioneer in the world of luxury travel, seeking at every turn to redefine the notion of what is possible on holiday. We have made it our business to specialise in destinations and itineraries that are extraordinary and specially tailored to your needs.

In contrast to other travel companies who rely on third parties to create their programmes and support them on the ground, our A&K itineraries are backed by over 2,200 handpicked staff across our 52 offices worldwide. We know that through our global network of experts, we have the knowledge and resources to create memorable journeys and take care of every detail before, during and after your journey.

With experience comes excellence and reliability and with A&K this translates to peace of mind and security. Our guests are our priority. You are looked after from beginning to end and beyond. Even when unexpected events occur or things don’t go to plan because of circumstances beyond A&K’s control we’ll go the extra mile for your wellbeing. DEDICATED EXPERTISE Our expert team of Travel Specialists regards travel not as an occasional diversion, but as a calling that stimulates the mind and nourishes the spirit. Exceptionally well-travelled individuals all, they are on call for recommendations, guidance and first hand feedback. Staying in constant touch with A&K’s partners and network of offices throughout the world also means the most up-to-date information is at their fingertips. All this translates to the best experience for you. SEAMLESS PRIVATE JOURNEYS For 55 years we have researched every destination we go to. Itineraries are subjected to close scrutiny and every element of a journey is carefully considered in terms of logistics and guest enjoyment. The result is the selection of holidays featured in this brochure, each one tried and tested, presenting the destination in the best possible way, in seamless style and comfort. These journeys are all designed to give you an experience beyond compare and are operated on a private basis for you and your travelling companion.

OUR GUIDES It is often said that a guide has the ability to make or break a special journey. We concur. A&K’s guides are the best in the business and are guaranteed to deliver a superlative experience each and every time. All are blessed with extensive knowledge and the ability to bring local attractions to life. Multilingual and well travelled, each possesses insight into the diverse attractions and cultural interactions present throughout the region. Irrespective of the destination, our guides will enlighten you in every locale with insider information that adds depth to your holiday. HOSTED JOURNEYS Also available is A&K’s exclusive portfolio of expertled small group journeys taking guests to a variety of different destinations around the world. The journeys are creatively designed with educational elements and local encounters that broaden the mind and deliver in-depth experiences of the destinations, their people, wildlife and culture. Group sizes are no more than 24 with expert tour hosts who are both entertaining and charismatic travelling companions with strong connections to the destination or expertise relevant to the journey focus. See pages 28 and 60 for our Hosted Journeys in these regions.

CUSTOMISED FOR YOU A&K offers a bespoke service, personally customising an itinerary incorporating your individual interests and needs. Our Travel Specialists deliver one-on-one consultations, taking the time to understand the destinations, experiences and elements that constitute your ideal holiday. With this information and the ongoing feedback received from our travellers and partners, we recommend the best holiday for you – whether an itinerary from the brochure or one that is developed to fit your personal situation.

Abercrombie & Kent works with the best airlines to fly you around the world. Our preferred partners are listed below.

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START EARNING QANTAS POINTS Earn 1 Qantas Point for every AUD$1 spent on eligible itineraries*.

Abercrombie & Kent is delighted to announce that guests can now earn Qantas Points when booking a luxury holiday. Qantas Frequent Flyer members will earn 1 Qantas Point for every dollar spent on an A&K land itinerary of seven nights or more* (excludes taxes and credit card fees). Qantas Frequent Flyers who book a tour with A&K using their Qantas Frequent Flyer linked credit card will also earn additional points**. Please do take the time to visit our website where we are also highlighting the potential points you could earn when booking eligible itineraries. Start exploring today, book your qualifying holiday and you could be closer to your dream reward, whether it be a flight to an exotic destination, a shopping voucher or one of the many other rewards available through Qantas Frequent Flyer. You could earn 6,430 points per member.

You could earn 6,830points per member.

‘Royal Rajasthan’ itinerary (pag.14) Valued from $6,430 per person.

‘Myanmar in Style’ itinerary (pag.46) Valued from $6,830 per person.

*You must be a Qantas Frequent Flyer Member to earn and redeem Qantas Points. A joining fee may apply. Membership and the earning and redemption of Qantas Points are subject to the Qantas Frequent Flyer Terms and Conditions, available at qantas.com/terms. Qantas Frequent Flyer Members can earn 1 Qantas Point per AU$1 spent on Eligible Products. Eligible Product(s) means any new International and Domestic private tour land itinerary booking of seven nights or more, created by Abercrombie & Kent, excluding flights (Eligible Booking). Qantas Points shall be awarded to you based upon the final amount spent on any Eligible Booking. Where a refund is applied after you return from your Eligible Booking, the final amount of Qantas Points awarded will be determined by the final amount paid less the refund amount. If Eligible Bookings are made in currencies other than AU$, the number of Qantas Points earned will be calculated based on the exchange rate of the day when final payment was made. Full terms and conditions can be found at abercrombiekent.com.au/qantas-frequent-flyer/abercrombie-kent-qantas-frequent-flyer-terms-and-conditions **Card products referred to are not Qantas products and not offered or issued by Qantas but by the relevant Card partners. The applicable Card Partner is the credit provider and credit licensee under the National Consumer Credit laws. 8

India & The Orient


WIN YOUR SHARE OF 600,000 QANTAS POINTS Abercrombie & Kent has been pioneering experiential luxury travel since 1962 and is delighted to be partnering with Qantas Frequent Flyer. To celebrate our new partnership, we’re giving three lucky guests the chance to share in 600,000 Qantas Points. To enter, between 15 August, 2016 to 31 March, 2017, simply book an A&K private itinerary of seven nights or more for travel up to 31 December, 2017 and you will automatically be included in the random manual prize draw*. What would you do with your points?

1st Prize 300,000 Fly to Johannesburg and experience South Africa’s sophisticated cities, dazzling landscapes and amazing wildlife. 84,000 points return business class for one, SYD - JNB (taxes, fees and charges are additional).

2nd Prize 200,000 Closer to home, treat yourself to a tropical escape and explore the wonders of far north Cairns. 72,000 points return business class for one, SYD - CNS (taxes, fees and charges are additional).

3rd Prize 100,000 There are a myriad of ways to use your points. From having premium wines delivered to your door with Qantas epiQure through to shopping on the online Qantas Store, you are spoilt for choice.

*Promotion Close Date: 31 March, 2017. Authorised under NSW permit no: LTPS/16/05843 and ACT Permit: TP16/01451. Full Terms and Conditions can be viewed at https://www.abercrombiekent.com.au/terms-conditions/win-a-share-of-600-000-qantaspoints-competition 1300 851 800 | abercrombiekent.com.au 9


A&K’S INDIA & THE ORIENT Where will your journey take you?

TIBET A land of breathtaking mountain scenery, sweeping landscapes and a rich Buddhist culture with monasteries, prayer flags, yaks and nomads.

UZBEKISTAN Home to the legendary cities of Samarkand and Bukhara, expect extraordinary architecture, grand mosques, UNESCO World Heritage sites, breathtaking landscapes and rich handicrafts.

UZBEKISTAN

BHUTAN Though tiny, this Buddhist kingdom in the Eastern Himalayas has cultivated an unspoiled culture and traditional lifestyle thanks to its isolation from the rest of the world.

TURKMENISTAN

TURKMENISTAN A powerful player on the ancient Silk Road, the vestiges of once powerful empires are seen today in its monuments, caravanserais and archaeological relics.

TIBET

NEPAL

NEPAL Dramatic Himalayan landscapes are just the beginning in this tiny nation of friendly, smiling people, extraordinary wildlife and World Heritage sites. There are also adventure activities aplenty.

INDIA

INDIA Dazzling colours, spiceladen markets, beach temples and desert forts plus legendary culinary traditions, world famous monuments and palm-lined backwater canals.

MALDIVES This country in the Indian Ocean comprises hundreds of islands and is famous for its white sand beaches, crystal clear seas, colourful marine life and exquisite hideaways.

India & Beyond The Orient

10

India & The Orient

SRI LANKA

MALDIVES

SRI LANKA Though compact, Sri Lanka packs a punch with World Heritage sites, hill stations, golden beaches and national parks plus beautiful boutique hotels.

BHUTAN


MONGOLIA One of travel’s last frontiers, Mongolia is vast, remote, strikingly beautiful and authentic. A land of open plains, desert landscapes, majestic mountains and Nomads who still eke out a living on the steppe as they have done for centuries.

CHINA Nowhere on earth does ancient history meet modern progress so much as in China, the world’s most populous nation with attractions to match.

JAPAN Intriguing and hospitable, Japan is home to ancient temples and shrines as well as futuristic cities, pristine landscapes, a vibrant contemporary culture and one of the world’s favourite cuisines.

MONGOLIA

JAPAN CHINA

LAOS Still relatively unexplored, Laos retains a sleepy charm with World Heritage sites, a rich Buddhist culture and a smattering of luxury hotels. MYANMAR LAOS

THAILAND VIETNAM CAMBODIA

VIETNAM With a tropical climate, ancient culture, a mouthwatering cuisine, fascinating village life plus great shopping and beaches, Vietnam is a world in one country.

CAMBODIA With a complex history spanning six centuries, Cambodia’s greatest legacy are the Angkor temples. A thriving handicraft industry exists plus an exciting culinary scene.

MYANMAR Authentic and still unspoiled, Myanmar is one of the most popular destinations in Southeast Asia. See Buddhist temples, the majestic Ayeyarwady, dreamy landscapes and small villages.

THAILAND One of Southeast Asia’s friendliest destinations, Thailand is blessed with breathtaking scenery, beaches, mountains, a vibrant culture, hill tribes, great shopping and a tantalising cuisine.

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India & Beyond A visit to India is a sensory adventure, its colours are dazzling and its sights many. There are spice-laden markets and places of pilgrimage, beach temples and desert forts. Its culinary traditions are legendary and its monuments number some of the world’s most famous. From the high mountains of the Himalaya to the palm-lined backwaters of Kerala, the opulent palaces of Rajasthan to its incredible wildlife, A&K delivers the best of India. In the region, Bhutan, Nepal, Sri Lanka and the Maldives also offer fascinating attractions, intriguing cultural diversity and breathtaking natural wonders. These places work well in combination with an Indian journey or as an individually focused holiday. For over 30 years, A&K has been delivering outstanding journeys to India and the Subcontinent. The company has four offices in India and one in Sri Lanka as well as the most highlyeducated guides and unique Insider Access opportunities.

When to Go Characterised by a hot, tropical climate the best time to travel to India and Sri Lanka is during the Australian summer when conditions are more temperate and humidity lower. Expect the monsoon May to September with rain generally in the morning or late afternoon. Travelling at this time shows the country in a lush new light. In the Himalayan regions to the north, travel is recommended late spring or autumn. Nepal’s monsoon occurs June to September, October and November are prime months to visit. The Maldives enjoys a hot tropical climate with consistent year-round temperatures and lower humidity in our summer months.

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India & The Orient


Go Beyond the Ordinary At A&K we pride ourselves on the ability to offer unique one of a kind experiences that are guaranteed to make your journey with us unforgettable. These are just a few of our hand-picked favourites.

Experience a game steeped in royal traditions

Dinner with an unforgettable view

Sleep under Search for elusive the stars wildlife in India and Sri Lanka

A private blessing in Bhutan

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Royal Rajasthan

Jama Masjid Mosque, Delhi

INDIA | 10 Days | Delhi – Agra – Ranthambore National Park – Jaipur – Udaipur Amritsar

Shimla Delhi

Jaipur Udaipur

CHINA

NE

Agra

PA L

Darjeeling Varanasi

Ranthambore INDIA

Air Road Rail

Mumbai

This journey is the perfect, well-paced introduction to India’s colourful north. Focusing on the region’s Moghul heritage and its Raj history, some of the country’s finest hotels and resorts are included as well as an exciting safari in search of the elusive Royal Bengal Tiger. Use this journey as a starting point and add other extension ideas for a more in-depth Indian experience.

AKP supported project: Deepalaya School 14

India & The Orient

Day 1: Arrive Delhi. A warm welcome to the Indian capital and a transfer to your luxurious hotel. The Imperial Delhi (Heritage Room) Day 2: Delhi. Join a local expert on a walk through lively Old Delhi. Wind your way through Chandni Chowk, past Jama Masjid, the biggest mosque in India, through the by-lanes of the walled city ending in the colourful spice market. Later, discover the majestic boulevards of New Delhi designed by Lutyens in 1920 (B). The Imperial Delhi (Heritage Room) Day 3: Delhi – Agra. Drive south-east to Agra (approx. 4 hrs.) and this afternoon visit the vast Agra Fort, a massive walled city which took seven years to complete. The views over the Yamuna River towards the Taj are breathtaking. Finish the day in splendour at India’s most magnificent monument, the Taj Mahal, just as the sun is setting (B). The Oberoi Amarvilas (Premier Room with Balcony) Day 4: Agra – Ranthambore National Park. See the Taj Mahal again at sunrise before transferring to Bharatpur railway station, stopping en route at the beautiful and well preserved Moghul palace city of Fatehpur Sikri. Board the train to Sawai Madhopur where you are met and transferred to your luxury tented accommodation on the edge of Ranthambore National Park (B,L). The Oberoi Vanyavilas (Luxury Tent) Day 5: Ranthambore National Park. Formerly the hunting reserve of the Maharajas of Jaipur, the park played host to many royal hunting parties but today it is famous for its tiger sightings and is one of the best places in the country to see these majestic predators in the wild. Game drives are twice daily with local naturalist guides (B). The Oberoi Vanyavilas (Luxury Tent)

Day 6: Ranthambore – Jaipur. This morning enjoy a morning game drive, before continuing your journey (approx. 3 hours) to the pink city of Jaipur arriving at the palatial former residence of the Maharaja of Jaipur for the next two nights (B). Rambagh Palace (Palace Room) Day 7: Jaipur. Just outside of Jaipur, you visit the magnificent 500 year old hilltop Amber Fort where you tour the opulent palace which was inhabited by the Rajput Maharajas and their families, halls of public audience and the beautiful Palace of Mirrors with its incredible inlay work and reflective mirrored mosaics. The views of the surrounding countryside are breathtaking. This afternoon visit the sights of Jaipur: the City Palace, the Palace of the Winds, Jantar Mantar Observatory and take a rickshaw ride through the streets (B). Rambagh Palace (Palace Room) Day 8: Jaipur – Udaipur. Today fly* to the beautiful lake city of Udaipur in the south of Rajasthan which is situated around three lakes with a backdrop of the arid Aravalli Hills (B). Taj Lake Palace (Luxury Lake View Room) Day 9: Udaipur. This morning visit the City Palace complex, the Sahelion-ki-Bari Gardens and the Crystal Gallery. This afternoon is at leisure with time to enjoy your beautiful hotel before a sunset cruise on Lake Pichola this evening (B). Taj Lake Palace (Luxury Lake View Room) Day 10: Depart Udaipur. Transfer to the airport for your onward flight (B). PRICE Twin Share Per Person: From $6,430 Solo Traveller: From $11,475 *Flight not included


INDIA EXTENSIONS Lengthen your A&K holiday with one of these short add-ons.

Golden Temple, Amritsar

The Oberoi Wildflower Hall

Varanasi

AMRITSAR EXTENSION | 3 DAYS

SHIMLA EXTENSION | 4 DAYS

VARANASI EXTENSION | 4 DAYS

Located in the state of Punjab, this city has been capital of the Sikh religion since the 16th century. Its most famous monument is the dazzling Golden Temple, a sacred shrine whose dome is covered with 100 kg of gold and its most unusual attraction the highly choreographed flag retrieval ceremony at the Wagah border.

Former summer capital for the British during the Raj period, Shimla is a charming town in the south-west Himalaya surrounded by forests of pine and cedar. It is famous for its natural beauty, architecture and craft traditions. Your base is The Oberoi Wildflower Hall, Lord Kitchener’s former residence.

Steeped in spirituality, the Hindu city of Varanasi is a place of pilgrimage, colour and reverence where devotees flock to wash in the holy waters of the Ganges. Its winding streets are home to some 2,000 temples while nearby Sarnath is where Buddha is said to have preached after achieving enlightenment.

Day 1: Arrive Amritsar. A warm welcome and private transfer to your hotel. Late this afternoon drive to the Wagah border to see the lowering of the flags ceremony. Hyatt Amritsar (Pool View) Day 2: Amritsar. This morning visit the Golden Temple to observe morning prayers. Also visit the communal kitchen, where members of the Sikh community come at all hours of the day and night to lend a hand in preparing simple meals for up to 35,000 pilgrims who visit the temple daily. Continue on to the Hall Bazaar, a labyrinth of narrow lanes and stalls, to see the multitude of different items for sale and Jallianwala Bagh, the memorial commemorating the 1919 massacre. Your afternoon is at leisure, before returning to the Golden Temple in the evening to witness the ‘Going to Bed’ ceremony of the Sikh Holy Book (B). Hyatt Amritsar (Pool View) Day 3: Depart Amritsar. Transfer to the airport where your journey ends (B). PRICE Twin Share per Person: From $660 Solo Traveller: From $1,325

Day 1: Delhi – Shimla (2,100M). Transfer to Delhi Railway Station for the journey north to Kalka and on by toy train to Shimla, a must for rail enthusiasts (B). The Oberoi Wildflower Hall (Premiere Mountain View Room)

Day 1: Arrive Varanasi. Transfer to your splendid palace hotel and this evening witness a Hindu prayer ceremony (‘Aarti’) on the Ganges River. Nadesar Palace (Palace Room)

Day 2: Shimla. Visit the Lakkar Bazaar, Jakhu Hill (2,455m) and St. Michael’s Cathedral. Afternoon at leisure (B). The Oberoi Wildflower Hall (Premiere Mountain View Room)

Day 2: Varanasi. A dawn boat ride on the Ganges. Later today tour Varanasi and the famous Bharat Mata Mandir Temple (B). Nadesar Palace (Palace Room)

Day 3: Shimla. Today is at leisure. Optional activities include mountain treks and biking, a round of golf, croquet, billiards, archery or an indulgent treatment at the hotel spa (additional cost) (B). The Oberoi Wildflower Hall (Premiere Mountain View Room)

Day 3: Varanasi. Today explore the Sarnath ruins which were rediscovered by British archaeologists in 1835. It is where Lord Buddha is said to have preached his first sermon. Visit the Archaeological Museum (B). Nadesar Palace (Palace Room)

Day 4: Shimla – Delhi. Transfer to Chandigarh Airport where your journey ends (B). PRICE Twin Share per Person: From $2,365 Solo Traveller: From $4,400

Day 4: Varanasi – Delhi. Transfer to Varanasi Airport where your journey ends (B). PRICE Twin Share per Person: From $1,985 Solo Traveller: From $3,770

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In Search of Tiger

Bandhavgarh National Park

INDIA | 8 Days | Delhi – Bandhavgarh N.P. – Kanha N.P. – Pench N.P. – Nagpur Delhi

NE

Khajuraho Panna NP Pench NP

BIAN EA

PA L

Jabalpur Bandhavgarh NP Kanha NP

Nagpur Mumbai Air Road

INDIA BAY OF BENGAL NP-National Park

Combining three of the country’s leading national parks this journey delivers unique wildlife experiences and excellent chances of tiger encounters. There are two tiers of accommodation for you to choose from and each programme includes daily jungle drives by open 4WD safari vehicle accompanied by expert naturalists, bird watching, guided nature walks, picnics, cultural walks and cycling through remote villages.

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India & The Orient

Day 1: Arrive Delhi. Arrive into Delhi, India’s capital and transfer to your iconic hotel. The Imperial (Heritage Room) Day 2: Delhi - Bandhavgarh National Park. Transfer to the airport for the flight* to Jabalpur. Here you are met and transferred by road east to Bandhavgarh National Park (approx. 4.5hrs.) which supports one of the highest densities of tiger in India. Afternoon game viewing activity (B,L,D). Samode Safari Lodge (Luxury Cottage) or Mahua Kothi Jungle Lodge (Cottage Suite) Days 3-4: Bandhavgarh. Two days exploring this beautiful and renowned tiger reserve with a trained naturalist on twice-daily safaris. Its dramatic and diverse landscape features tropical forests and woodland, steep rocky hills and flat grasslands with a large variety of mammals. Choose from 4WD safaris or a guided walk (B,L,D). Samode Safari Lodge (Luxury Cottage) or Mahua Kothi Jungle Lodge (Cottage Suite) Day 5: Bandhavgarh - Kanha National Park. A long drive (approx. 6hrs.) today to Kanha National Park, one of India’s largest. It is a designated Project Tiger reserve and was the inspiration for Kipling’s ‘The Jungle Book’. With over 200 bird species it is also an ornithologist’s paradise. Afternoon game viewing activity (B,L,D). Singinawa Jungle Lodge (Cottage) or Banjaar Tola Tented Camp (Tented Suite) Day 6: Kanha National Park. Enjoy further game viewing opportunities today (B,L,D). Singinawa Jungle Lodge (Cottage) or Banjaar Tola Tented Camp (Tented Suite)

Day 7: Kanha - Pench National Park. Today drive to Pench National Park (approx. 5hrs.). Afternoon game viewing activity (B,L,D). Jamtara Wilderness Camp (Luxury Tent) or Baghvan Jungle Lodge (Suite) Day 8: Pench – Nagpur. After a morning game viewing activity you are transferred to Nagpur airport (approx. 2hrs.) for an onward flight* to Mumbai or Delhi (B). Note: Game drives do not operate Wednesday afternoons. PRICE Samode Safari Lodge, Singinawa Jungle Lodge & Jamtara Wilderness Camp Twin Share Per Person: From $4,135 Solo Traveller: From $6,815 Mahua Kothi Jungle Lodge, Banjaar Tola Tented Camp & Baghvan Jungle Lodge Twin Share Per Person: From $5,565 Solo Traveller: From $8,795 *Flight not included.


BIAN EA

India by Rail

Maharajas’ Express

INDIA | 14 Days | Mumbai – Ajanta – Udaipur – Jodhpur – Bikaner – Jaipur – Ranthambore – Agra – Delhi – Varanasi CHINA Bikaner

Delhi

NE

Agra Jodhpur

Jaipur

Udaipur

PA L

Varanasi Ranthambore N.P. INDIA Ajanta

Mumbai Air Rail

Day 1: Arrive Mumbai. A warm A&K welcome to Mumbai and transfer to your hotel. Taj Mahal Palace (Luxury Grande Sea View, Palace Wing) Day 2: Mumbai. Morning private city tour including the Prince of Wales Museum, a museum to Mahatma Gandhi and the colourful Dhobi Ghats, Mumbai’s unique outdoor laundry (B). Taj Mahal Palace (Luxury Grande Sea View, Palace Wing) Day 3: Mumbai - Ajanta. Early afternoon transfer to the railway station to board the Maharaja’s Express, your home for the next week. Set off northeast towards Ajanta (B,L,D). Maharaja’s Express (Deluxe cabin) Day 4: Ajanta - Udaipur. A morning excursion to the World Heritage listed Ajanta Caves which house an astonishing collection of Hindu, Buddhist and Jain sculpted art. Return to the train before continuing north towards Rajasthan (B,L,D). Maharaja’s Express (Deluxe cabin)

Deluxe cabin

Redefining luxury train travel on the subcontinent, this two week journey incorporates a seven night rail journey aboard the Maharajas’ Express, India’s latest and most luxurious train. Highlights include unique experiences of cosmopolitan Mumbai, famous forts and palaces of Rajasthan, the majestic Taj Mahal plus the Indian capital, Delhi, and the holy Ganges River at Varanasi.

Day 5: Udaipur. A guided tour of the romantic city of Udaipur including the City Palace complex and Crystal gallery. This afternoon take an optional tour† through the Old Bazaar. (B,L,D). Maharajas' Express (Deluxe cabin) Day 6: Jodhpur. Arrive into the blue city of Jodhpur. Visit the impressive Mehrangarh Fort, Umaid Bhawan Palace Museum and the white marble memorial Jaswant Thada. This evening an exclusive cocktail party and cultural performance is arranged (B,L,D). Maharajas' Express (Deluxe cabin) Day 7: Bikaner. On north to Bikaner for an optional tour † to either Deshnok temples or Lalgarh Palace Museum. This afternoon, visit Junagarh Fort with camel ride in the Sam Sand Dunes, sundowners and a cultural performance (B,L,D). Maharajas' Express (Deluxe cabin)

Day 8: Jaipur. Visit the magnificent hilltop Amber Fort before an exclusive elephant activity in Jaipur. Later today visit the Jantar Mantar observatory or choose optional activities† (B,L,D). Maharajas' Express (Deluxe cabin) Day 9: Ranthambore National Park – Agra. An early morning safari through the Ranthambore National Park in search of tiger and other wildlife. After lunch visit the well preserved Moghul city of Fatehpur Sikri (B,L,D). Maharajas' Express (Deluxe cabin) Day 10: Agra – Delhi. Early this morning travel to Agra to visit the breathtaking Taj Mahal before a champagne breakfast. Afterwards the train travels on to Delhi where you disembark and transfer to your hotel (B,L). The Leela Palace Delhi (Premier Room) Day 11: Delhi. This morning join a local expert on a walk around Old Delhi and later, discover the majestic boulevards of New Delhi (B). The Leela Palace Delhi (Premier Room) Day 12: Delhi – Varanasi. Fly* to Varanasi. Transfer to the hotel and this evening be part of a Hindu prayer ceremony (‘Aarti’) (B). Nadesar Palace (Palace Room) Day 13: Varanasi. A dawn boat ride on the Ganges before visiting the Sarnath ruins. Later today tour Varanasi and the famous Bharat Mata Mandir Temple (B). Nadesar Palace (Palace Room) Day 14: Depart Varanasi. Transfer to the airport for your onward flight (B). PRICE Twin Share Per Person: From $16,655 Solo Traveller: From $29,715 † Optional touring available for purchase on train *Flight not included

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Treasures of Southern India

Mysore Palace, Mysore

INDIA | 11 Days | Kochi – Kozhikode – Ooty – Nagarhole National Park – Mysore - Bangalore Day 1: Arrive Kochi. Arrive into Kochi to a private A&K welcome and transfer to your hotel. Brunton Boatyard (Sea Facing Room)

Mumbai ARABIAN SEA Nagarhole N.P. Kozhikode

Road

INDIA

Bangalore Mysore Ooty Kochi

India’s south is a world away from its northern counterpart. A land famous for its silks, spices and sandalwood, time moves here at a more languid pace. There are incredible palaces and temples plus lakes, tea plantations and colonial hill stations. Ride on the toy train to Ooty, visit Nagarhole National Park for tiger and leopard sightings and explore the old world charm and culture of Mysore.

Day 2: Kochi. Your private sightseeing today includes the Chinese fishing nets and the ancient fort town with visits to Fort Kochi, Raja’s Palace, Jewish Synagogue and St. Francis Church. Finish the afternoon with a harbour cruise (B). Brunton Boatyard (Sea Facing Room) Day 3: Kochi – Kozhikode. You are driven north along the coast to Kozhikode (approx. 5hrs.). Formerly Calicut, the city became a part of world history when Vasco De Gama set foot here in 1498. This afternoon your sightseeing includes Calicut Beach, Thali Temple, Kappad Beach, Pazhassiraja Museum and Beypore Beach (B). The Gateway Calicut (Superior Room) Day 4: Kozhikode – Ooty (2,240m). Transfer east by private vehicle to Ooty (approx. 4.5 hours), “Queen of hill stations”, with the afternoon at leisure (B). Savoy Ooty (Superior Room) Day 5: Ooty. This morning enjoy a half day sightseeing tour of Ooty with time to wander around town and admire some of the Raj-era villas and the terraced Botanical Gardens. Visit a local tea garden or the charming old hill station of Kotagiri. This afternoon take the toy train ride on the 46km picturesque route through tea plantations and forested slopes before returning to the hotel (B). Savoy Ooty (Superior Room) Day 6: Ooty – Nagarhole National Park. Continue further north to Nagarhole National Park (approx. 3.5 hours), one of Karnataka’s most popular wildlife destinations. Once a private

18

India & The Orient

hunting lodge of the Maharaja of Mysore, Kabini is famous for its spectacular wildlife including tiger, Indian bison, leopard, wild dog and elephant. (B,L,D). Orange County Resort (Jacuzzi Hut) Day 7: Nagarhole National Park. A full day at Nagarhole with morning and afternoon game viewing by safari van or boat (B,L,D). Orange County Resort (Jacuzzi Hut) Day 8: Nagarhole National Park – Mysore. This morning you are driven north to Mysore known for its magnificent palaces, sprawling gardens and tree lined boulevards (B). Windflower Spa & Resort (The Windflower Villa with Pool) Day 9: Mysore. Your touring of Mysore includes the Maharajah’s Palace, one of the most beautiful buildings in India. Continue to the Zoological Gardens and Chamundi Temple (B). Windflower Spa & Resort (The Windflower Villa with Pool) Day 10: Mysore – Bangalore. Drive to Bangalore (approx. 3 hours) and later this afternoon enjoy a half day sightseeing tour including the Parliament and Secretariat Buildings, Tipu Sultan’s summer palace, the Nandi Temple and the beautiful Lal Bagh Gardens (B). Taj West End (Taj Club Room) Day 11: Depart Bangalore. Transfer airport for departure flight (B). PRICE Twin Share Per Person: From $4,715 Solo Traveller: From $8,965


Backwaters of Kerala

Adrift on the backwaters

INDIA | 6 Days | Kochi – Backwaters – Kumarakom - Kochi

Goa INDIA BAY OF BENGAL Kochi ARABIAN SEA

Road

Kumarakom

SRI LANKA

On India’s tropical Malabar Coast, Kochi is a delight. Trading port for centuries, the colonial influences are still strong with attractions plenty and it’s your stepping off point for the dreamy backwaters where you cruise in a private houseboat, cared for by an attentive crew. Designed in the style of a traditional rice barge this leisurely journey reveals all the colour and charm of the area.

Day 1: Arrive Kochi. A warm welcome to Kerala and your hotel which is situated on Willingdon Island with a magnificent view of Cochin harbour. As one of India’s principal sea ports, Kochi was the centre of India’s spice trade for many centuries. Vivanta by Taj Malabar Cochin (Superior Charm Sea View Room, Tower Wing) Day 2: Kochi. Your private guide accompanies you through Fort Cochin, the first European colonial settlement in India – see the Mattancherry Palace, the Jewish synagogue built in 1568 and St. Francis Church, the oldest in India. Cruise the harbour this evening on a private motor yacht (B). Vivanta by Taj Malabar Cochin (Superior Charm Sea View Room, Tower Wing) Day 3: Kochi – Alleppey. Today you are driven south along the coast to Alleppey (approx. 1.5 hrs.) where you board your private houseboat for an overnight cruise of the beautiful Kerala backwaters. Your traditional crewed houseboat is a simple and charming mode of transport, taking you into the heart of the palm-fringed backwaters where life has changed little over centuries. You’ll see fishermen with their daily catch, women washing at the waterside, brightly painted houses, boats laden with coir and copra and everywhere beaming faces. Your chef will produce delicious, fresh Keralan cuisine cooked on board (B,L,D). Kumarakom Lake Resort Houseboat

Chinese fishing nets, Fort Kochi

Day 4: Backwaters – Kumarakom. Disembark this morning and visit a local farming family where there’s time to learn a little of their way of life before a cooking demonstration and lunch. Later you are transferred to the resort set on the banks of Vembanad Lake. The rest of the day is at leisure to relax and enjoy the many resort activities available (B,L). Kumarakom Lake Resort (Heritage Villa with Private Pool) Day 5: Kumarakom. A full day at leisure. Relax at the resort by the pool, enjoy some yoga or meditation, water sports, a walk or bike ride to the local village or a spot of fishing (B). Kumarakom Lake Resort (Heritage Villa with Private Pool) Day 6: Kumarakom – Kochi. Transfer to Kochi Airport for your onward flight (B) PRICE Twin Share Per Person: From $2,220 Solo Traveller: From $4,190

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EXPLORE MORE OF INDIA Get more out of your holiday and explore the region in greater depth. Here are some recommendations to complement your visit. Ask your Travel Specialist how best to personalise your journey or visit www.abercrombiekent.com.au to learn more.

Tea Plantation, Darjeeling

Gadi Sagar Lake, Jaisalmer, Rajasthan

DARJEELING

JAISALMER

Established by the British as an escape from the high temperatures of Calcutta, Darjeeling is a delightful part of India and a world away from the city buzz. Immerse yourself in the workings of a traditional tea estate in the foothills of the Himalaya where you spend four days in charming bungalow accommodation, visit the tea gardens and hear from an estate guide the story of tea from planting to processing.

In the westernmost reaches of Rajasthan in the heart of the Thar Desert is the ‘Golden City’ of Jaisalmer which has a remote frontier feel. Famous for its ‘living’ sandstone fort which dominates the landscape, it is home to a quarter of the city’s population and some exquisite Jain temples. There are beautiful examples of intricately carved havelis (old merchant homes) and a unique desert experience. A&K RECOMMENDS

A&K RECOMMENDS

‘Darjeeling Extension’ from Bagdogra | 4 Days

‘Jaisalmer Extension’ from Jodhpur | 3 Days

Chatrapati Shivaji Terminus, Mumbai

MUMBAI India’s commercial capital is a vibrant and cosmopolitan city. With a golden history dating back centuries, Mumbai never fails to mesmerise with heritage monuments, parks, museums, shopping malls, beaches, lakes, an impressive natural harbour and a world famous film industry. Explore different aspects of the city from heritage village to ancient Hindu and Buddhist caves and the city’s colourful outdoor laundry. A&K RECOMMENDS

‘Mumbai Extension’ | 4 Days

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Blue city of Jodhpur, Rajasthan

JODHPUR Founded in the 15th century, Jodhpur became one of Rajasthan’s wealthiest cities capitalising on its location on the Delhi-Gujarat trade route. Today the ‘Blue City’ is dominated by the imposing and beautifully maintained Mehrangarh Fort, one of the most impenetrable in history, while the old city is a bustling labyrinth of streets, alleyways and market places ripe for exploring. A&K RECOMMENDS

‘Splendours of Rajasthan’ from Delhi | 14 Days

Victoria Memorial , Kolkata (Calcutta)

North Island, Seychelles Goa

KOLKATA (CALCUTTA)

GOA

Founded as an East India Company trading post, Kolkata (Calcutta) was India’s capital under the British Raj. Today the West Bengal capital on the banks of the Hooghly River is a vibrant city with a rich intellectual and cultural heritage known for its grand colonial architecture, art galleries and cultural festivals. It is also home to the headquarters of the Missionaries of Charity, founded by Mother Teresa who worked in the city for much of her life.

An intriguing blend of East and West, Goa is India’s original Portuguese capital situated on the country’s southwest coast. Renowned for its natural beauty, there are golden sandy beaches, coconut groves, vibrant green paddy fields and dense forests and it offers a variety of options for a relaxing beach stay. In addition it boasts an exciting food scene that cleverly fuses local and international flavours as well as important yoga and wellness traditions.

A&K RECOMMENDS

‘Calcutta Extension’ | 4 Days

A&K RECOMMENDS

‘Goa Extension’ | 4 Days

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Enchanting Sri Lanka

Dambulla Cave Temple

SRI LANKA | 15 Days | Colombo – Cultural Triangle – Kandy – Hatton – Tangalle – Galle – Colombo Trincomalee SRI LANKA Anuradhapura Polonnaruwa Sigiriya Dambulla Pasikudah Kandy Colombo

Hatton

LACCADIVE SEA Road

Yala National Park Galle

Tangalle

This charming and diverse island nation is still one of the world’s hottest travel destinations. The appeal lies in its delightful blend of ancient cities, tea plantations, hill stations, wildlife, temples and golden beaches and all at a wonderfully relaxed pace. The people are warm and welcoming, the climate tropical and it’s easy to get around. The culinary attractions are many and there are UNESCO World Heritage Sites and beautiful boutique hotels in abundance.

AKP supported project: Project Leopard 22 India & The Orient

Day 1: Arrive Colombo. A private VIP welcome awaits. Transfer (approx. 45 minute drive) to your boutique hotel in the heart of the city. Uga Residence (Park Suite) Day 2: Colombo. The morning is at leisure. After lunch is a private tour of Colombo, a city which successfully blends historic values and modern tastes. Colonial buildings exist alongside those of Buddhist, Hindu, Islamic, Indian and contemporary architectural styles and you will explore some of the highlights including the bustling bazaar district of Pettah, the Gangaramaya Buddhist Temple, Wolfendhal Dutch Church and Galle Face Green (B). Uga Residence (Park Suite) Day 3: Colombo – The Cultural Triangle. After breakfast today you are driven northeast to Dambulla (approx. 4 hrs.). At Dambulla you visit the extraordinary Buddhist cave temples. Some date as far back as the 3rd century B.C. and inside the many statues and murals give a perfect overview of Sinhalese Buddhist art at its best. At the conclusion of your visit continue north to Thirappane (approx. 1 hr) and your glorious rural retreat, set amidst paddy fields (B). Ulagalla Resort (Villa with plunge pool) Day 4: Cultural Triangle. This morning you visit Anuradhapura, one of southeast Asia’s most impressive sights. It was the country’s first ancient capital established in the 6th century BC used also by the British as their capital in the north central region. Ruled for 1400 years it was known as the cradle of Buddhism and its ancient ruins are spread over 40 sq km. Highlights include the world’s largest stupa which dates from the 4th century AD, the sacred Bodhi tree planted in 236BC, ruins of ancient monastery complexes and incredible Buddhist sculptures. Return to the resort and the afternoon is at leisure (B). Ulagalla Resort (Villa with plunge pool)

Day 5: Cultural Triangle. Spend today enjoying your spacious villa at Ulagalla complete with private plunge pool. Take an optional tour to the UNSECO World Heritage Site of Polonnaruwa, bicycle around the property, visit local villages, take part in a cooking class, try your hand at archery or horse riding and the spa is not to be missed (additional costs) (B). Ulagalla Resort (Villa with plunge pool) Day 6: Cultural Triangle – Kandy. This morning you are driven to the cliff top citadel of Sigiriya (approx. 1.5 hours). A UNESCO World Heritage site, Sigiriya is a fortress complex set 200m up on an enormous rocky outcrop. Dating to the 5th century, the site is a complex of buildings, part royal palace and part self-contained town with the famous Lion Gate, water gardens, walls and moats on par with the best in the ancient world. In a sheltered pocket approached by a spiral stairway are the famous Sigiriya frescoes, 21 figures of females depicted as rising from the clouds, some of the earliest surviving pictorial art in Sri Lanka. Afterwards, continue south to Kandy, the cultural hub of the island (B). The Kandy House (Deluxe Room) Day 7: Kandy. This morning is a tour of Kandy. Arrive at the sacred Temple of the Tooth in time for the morning pooja ceremony. The Temple of the Tooth is considered one of the most revered by Buddhists as it houses the sacred Tooth Relic of Lord Buddha. The present temple was built during the 17th century and is located in the city centre, overlooking the picturesque Kandy Lake. The relic of the Tooth is kept in an inner shrine fronted by two large elephant tusks and is a famous pilgrimage site. Be part of the ceremony as offerings are made in honour of the Tooth. Afterwards visit the Royal Botanical Gardens in the company of a renowned botanist. The gardens are home to more than 4,000 species of flora, including orchids, spices, medicinal plants and palm trees (B). The Kandy House (Deluxe Room)


Tea plantation, Hatton

Day 8: Kandy – Hatton. This morning transfer to Hatton by car (approx. 2.5 hrs.). This journey is one of the most scenic as you travel through the highlands of Sri Lanka past pine forests, small villages, mist covered mountains, scenic waterfalls and lush green tea estates. Arrive at your accommodation at Ceylon Tea Trails, with its charming colonial era tea planter bungalows, in time for a late lunch. There is an option to take the scenic rail journey from Kandy to Hatton but it is subject to seat availability (B,L,D). Ceylon Tea Trails (Luxury Room) Day 9: Hatton. After breakfast you are personally escorted on a morning “Tea Experience” where you visit the plantations and factory. First introduced to the country in 1867 by Englishman James Taylor, today tea is Sri Lanka’s main export and there is roughly 465,000 acres under cultivation. Today you will be able to personally acquaint yourself with the art of tea plucking as professional pickers in the organic tea plantation show you the way and learn about the full process from planting and varietal differences to hand plucking, the auction process and tasting. The remainder of the day is at leisure to enjoy the surroundings and facilities of the bungalow. Explore the local trails with a number of walks available. A hike from one Tea Trails bungalow to another for a meal or cup of tea is highly recommended. Other activities available include mountain biking, croquet, spa treatments (additional cost) and tennis (B,L,D). Ceylon Tea Trails (Luxury Room)

High tea, Ceylon Tea Trails

Day 10: Hatton – Tangalle. A long drive south today to Tangalle (approx. 6-7 hrs.). Arrive at your beautiful resort which is situated amidst a mature coconut grove fronting a crescent shaped beach near the village of Tangalle (B). Amanwella (Pool Suite)

Day 13: Tangalle – Galle. This morning you are driven west to Galle. Your beautiful hotel sits within the ramparts of the 17th century Galle Fort, the largest intact Dutch fort in Asia which gained UNESCO World Heritage status in 1988. This afternoon take a guided walking tour through the atmospheric streets of the old fort admiring the colonial architecture and gaining interesting insights to the lives of the original merchant families and those residing there today (B). Amangalla (Chamber)

Days 11-12: Tangalle. Two days at leisure to enjoy the resort and its beach. An optional full day excursion to Yala National Park is available (additional cost) (B). Amanwella (Pool Suite)

Day 14: Galle. Today is at leisure for you to further explore the fort at your own pace. Cycling tours can be organised, as well as whale watching between the months of November and April. High tea at

Amangalla - a Galle institution - comes highly recommended (additional cost) (B). Amangalla (Chamber) Day 15: Galle – Colombo Airport. Transfer back to Colombo and the airport for your departure flight (approx. 2.5 hr) (B). PRICE Twin Share Per Person: From $8,995 Solo Traveller: From $15,990

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Wings over Sri Lanka

Sigiriya Lion Rock Fortress

SRI LANKA | 13 Days | Colombo – Sigiriya – Kandy – Hatton – Galle – Colombo Day 1: Arrive Colombo. Arrive with fast track immigration and transfer to the hotel. Rest of the day at leisure. The Tintagel (Executive Suite)

Trincomalee SRI LANKA Anuradhapura

Polonnaruwa Sigiriya Pasikudah Kandy

Colombo

Hatton

LACCADIVE SEA Air Road Rail

Yala Galle Weligama

This journey links the island’s most important scenic and cultural attractions by air avoiding some long drives. From a VIP welcome in the capital, head to the Cultural Triangle visiting some of the country’s most impressive World Heritage sites. There’s a pooja ceremony at Kandy’s Temple of the Tooth and a tea plantation experience as well as a villa stay in the atmospheric Galle Fort.

Day 2: Colombo. This morning is a private city tour including the bustling bazaar district of Pettah, the Gangaramaya Buddhist Temple, Wolfendhal Dutch Church and Galle Face Greet. Afternoon at leisure (B). The Tintagel (Executive Suite) Day 3: Colombo – Sigiriya. Transfer to the airport and fly northeast to the Cultural Triangle. Visit Dambulla and its extraordinary Buddhist cave temples en route to the hotel (B). Jetwing Vil Uyana (Paddy Dwelling with plunge pool) Day 4: Sigiriya – Polonnaruwa - Sigiriya. This morning visit Polonnaruwa, Sri Lanka’s second ancient capital with highlights including an iconic manmade reservoir, the famous Rock Temple and ancient palace ruins. Return to the hotel and spend the rest of the day at leisure (B). Jetwing Vil Uyana (Paddy Dwelling with plunge pool) Day 5: Sigiriya. Full day at leisure with a car and driver at your disposal. Optional activities (extra charge) include a visit to Anuradhapura, a hot air balloon flight or a local village visit (B). Jetwing Vil Uyana (Paddy Dwelling with plunge pool) Day 6: Sigiriya – Kandy. This morning you are driven to the 5th century cliff top citadel of Sigiriya (approx. 1.5 hours) set 200m up on an enormous rocky outcrop. Allow at least 1.5 hours to make the steep ascent at a moderate pace admiring the famous Sigiriya frescoes en route. Afterwards, continue south to Kandy (B). The Stone House (Stone House Room) Day 7: Kandy. After breakfast wander around the city of Kandy, a hub for Sinhalese arts and crafts. Later in the day visit the sacred Temple of the Tooth in time for a pooja ceremony. The Temple of the Tooth is considered one of the most revered

24 India & The Orient

by Buddhists as it houses the sacred Tooth Relic of Lord Buddha. This evening enjoy a cultural show featuring traditional Sri Lankan dancing (B). The Stone House (Stone House Room) Day 8: Kandy – Hatton. Late this morning take the train from Peradeniya to Hatton, one of the most scenic railway journeys through the highlands of Sri Lanka. On arrival transfer to Ceylon Tea Trails, with its charming colonial era tea planter bungalows (B,L,D). Ceylon Tea Trails (Luxury Room) Day 9: Hatton. After breakfast you are personally escorted on a morning “Tea Experience” where you acquaint yourself with the art of tea plucking and learn about the full process from planting and varietal differences to hand plucking, the auction process and tasting. The remainder of the day is at leisure (B,L,D). Ceylon Tea Trails (Luxury Room) Day 10: Hatton – Galle. Transfer for the flight to Koggala where you are met and transferred to Galle and your hotel. Rest of the day at leisure (B). 25 Rampart Street Villa (Sea View Room) Day 11: Galle. Today enjoy a private city tour of the 17th century Galle Fort which mixes the exotic with the colonial plus time to explore at your own pace. Sunset from the ramparts is highly recommended (B). 25 Rampart Street Villa (Sea View Room) Day 12: Galle – Colombo. Transfer Koggala airport for the early afternoon flight to Colombo and your hotel where the remainder of the day is at leisure (B). Taj Samudra (Taj Club Floor Ocean View Room) Day 13: Depart Colombo. Transfer airport for departure flight (B). PRICE Twin Share Per Person: From $9,325 Solo Traveller: From $14,145


EXPLORE MORE OF SRI LANKA Get more out of your holiday and explore the region in greater depth. Here are some recommendations to complement your visit. Ask your Travel Specialist how best to personalise your journey or visit www.abercrombiekent.com.au to learn more.

YALA NATIONAL PARK Discover Sri Lanka’s extraordinary wildlife on a safari in Yala National Park. This is Sri Lanka’s second largest park at nearly 130,000 hectares with a diversity of habitats including light forest, scrub, grasslands, waterholes and lagoons. It has the highest concentration of leopard in the world plus 44 varieties of mammal and 215 bird species. In addition to leopard, other wildlife includes elephants, sloth bears, sambars, jackals, spotted dear, peacocks, and crocodiles. Game viewing is conducted in open-sided 4WD vehicles allowing for optimum sightings and photographic opportunities. A&K RECOMMENDS

‘Yala National Park Extension’ | 4 Days

Leopard, Yala N.P.

EAST COAST SRI LANKA Trincomalee sits on one of the world’s finest natural harbours with a long history and plenty of charm. A vibrant seaside city, ‘Trinco’ is home to the famous Koneswaram Temple where the annual Chariot Festival takes place while other attractions include the old Dutch fort by the harbour. The area is also famous for its golden beaches, coconut palms, the coral reefs around Pigeon Island, as well as the blue whales, dolphins and turtles that frequent these waters. Surrounding beaches provide excellent swimming and surfing while whale watching and fishing are other popular pursuits. A&K RECOMMENDS

‘East Cost Beach Extension’ | 4 Days

Private picnic, Jungle Beach Resort

SOUTH COAST SRI LANKA Sri Lanka’s glorious south coast boasts idyllic beaches, calm seas and colourful sunsets. The iconic stilt fishermen can be viewed here and dolphin and whale watching is possible in season at Mirissa. A choice of luxury resorts is on offer, each with breathtaking Indian Ocean views. Besides relaxing poolside, there are plenty of other activities available including diving, snorkelling, surfing and big-game fishing. A few days in the area is the perfect way to end a tour of the cultural highlights of Sri Lanka. A&K RECOMMENDS

‘South Coast Extension’ | 4 Days

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The Land of the Thunder Dragon

Tiger’s Nest Monastery

BHUTAN | 9 Days | Paro – Thimphu – Punakha - Gangtey – Paro CHINA TIBET Punakha Thimphu Paro

Bumthang

Gangtey Phobijikha BHUTAN Valley

INDIA Road

The tiny Buddhist Kingdom of Bhutan awaits. Nestled high in the Himalayas, its isolation from the world has cultivated a culture rich in traditions, religion and a benevolent monarchy. It has dramatic landscapes, from snow-capped peaks and deeply forested slopes to raging, boulder strewn rivers. This journey takes you into the ancient kingdom for an adventure into the hearts and lands of charming farmers, fascinating weavers, enchanting monks and charismatic leaders.

26 India & The Orient

Day 1: Paro – Thimphu (2,350M). Arrive into Paro and transfer to the charming capital Thimphu visiting Simtokha Dzong en route (L,D). Taj Tashi (Luxury Room) Day 2: Thimphu. Morning sightseeing includes the National Library and the traditional Folk Heritage Museum. Continue to the National Institute of Traditional Medicine and afterwards visit craft shops and the handicraft emporium. You also visit the memorial Chorten and Tashichho Dzong on the edge of the city (B,L,D). Taj Tashi (Luxury Room) Day 3: Thimphu – Punakha (1,300M). A dramatic drive (approx. 3 hrs.) over the high mountain pass of Dochu La where views of the Himalaya are breathtaking. A short hike takes you to Chimi Lhakhang, a Buddhist monastery near Punakha which is surrounded by hundreds of prayer flags. You also visit the six-storeyed Punakha Dzong (B,L,D). Amankora Punakha (Suite) Day 4: Punakha. Today is a hike (approx. 1 hr) to the upper end of the valley and the Khamsum Yulley Namgyal Chorten, a fine example of Bhutanese architecture and artistic traditions which sits on a beautiful ridge and commands magnificent views (B,L,D). Amankora Punakha (Suite) Day 5: Punakha - Gangtey (3,000M). Today you are driven (approx. 3 hrs.) east to the Phobjikha Valley into quaint Gangtey village and your lodge with its spectacular setting and sweeping views over the whole valley (B,L,D). Gangtey Goenpa Lodge (Farmhouse suite)

Day 6: Gangtey. This morning visit the striking Gangtey monastery before spending the rest of the day touring the Phobjikha Valley. This quiet remote area is the chosen winter home of the rare and graceful black-necked crane which migrates here annually from the Tibetan plateau. Walks or mountain biking are also available from the lodge (B,L,D). Gangtey Goenpa Lodge (Farmhouse suite) Day 7: Gangtey – Paro (2,250M). Drive to Paro (approx. 4 hours). Visit Paro Dzong, one of the finest examples of Bhutanese architecture and the National Museum which houses some of Bhutan’s finest art. Later on you visit Kyichu Lhakhang, an important Buddhist temple and one of Bhutan’s oldest religious sites (B,L,D). Uma Paro (Valley View Room) Day 8: Paro. This morning trek up to the “Tiger’s Nest” monastery, one of Bhutan’s most revered monuments. The four-hour trek offers spectacular views of this sacred monastery perched on a cliff face 900m above the valley floor. Afterwards visit the ruins of Drukgyel Dzong (B,L,D). Uma Paro (Valley View Room) Day 9: Depart Paro. Transfer to the airport for your departure flight (B). PRICE Twin Share Per Person: From $10,885 Solo Traveller: From $12,350


Images of Nepal

Boudhanath Stupa, Kathmandu

NEPAL | 11 Days | Kathmandu – Ghandruk – Majgaun - Dhampus – Pokhara – Chitwan National Park – Kathmandu Day 1: Arrive Kathmandu (1,400M). Arrive and transfer to your hotel. Evening trek briefing. Dwarika’s Hotel (Heritage Deluxe Room)

CHINA Majgaun Dhampus

Annapurna

TIBET

Ghandruk

Pokhara

Mt Everest Kathmandu

Chitwan National Park Air Road

INDIA

NEPAL

The remote mountainous nation of Nepal has a certain indescribable magic with more of the world’s highest mountains than any other country and extraordinary natural beauty complemented by friendly, smiling people, wonderful wildlife and an ancient culture. This journey combines many of Nepal’s highlights, including the World Heritage sites around Kathmandu, a private trek in the Annapurna Valley, plus a wildlife experience and is well suited for the more active traveller.

Day 2: Kathmandu. This morning enjoy a breathtaking scenic flight of Mt Everest. Later a private tour to Swayambhunath stupa, one of the country’s most important and sacred Buddhist shrines. This afternoon visit Patan, a city with a rich cultural heritage, and home to the valley’s finest craftsmen (B). Dwarika’s Hotel (Heritage Deluxe Room) Day 3: Kathmandu. Today’s sightseeing includes Boudhanath Stupa, a centre of Tibetan Buddhism. Thousands of pilgrims circle the stupa daily spinning the prayer wheels. Continue to the temple of Pashupatinath on the banks of the sacred Bagmati River. Later drive to the famous pottery and woodcarving centre of Bhaktapur (B). Dwarika’s Hotel (Heritage Deluxe Room) Day 4: Kathmandu – Ghandruk (1,940M). Transfer for your flight to Pokhara where you are met by your private trek crew and driven along the Seti River valley to the trek start point. Enjoy outstanding views of the mountains and Pokhara Valley before trekking through small hamlets and terraced rice fields to your lodge (approx 2.5 hour walk) (B,L,D). Himalaya Lodge (Standard Room) Day 5: Gandruk – Majgaun (1,400M). Today the trail follows the route of the Annapurna Sanctuary to Shauli Bazaar. From here, follow the Modi River to a cable bridge and a two hour walk uphill to the village of Majgaun and the lodge (approx. 5 hour walk) (B,L,D). Gurung Lodge (Standard Room)

Day 6: Majgaun – Dhampus (1,525M). This morning’s walk is through forests of oak, rhododendron and silver birch with incredible views of Annapurna South, Hiunchuli and Lamjung. The path soon levels out and reaches Pothana village before heading downhill to Dhampus and the lodge which has superb views of the Fishtail Peak and the Annapurna range (approx. 4 hour walk) (B,L,D). Basanta Lodge Day 7: Dhampus – Phedi – Pokhara. Descend to the Pokhara Valley and transfer to your accommodation which is located in a tranquil setting beside a meandering river and within easy reach of picturesque Phewa Lake. Rest of the day at leisure (approx. 1.5 hour walk) (B,L). Pavilions Himalaya Resort (Deluxe Villa) Day 8: Pokhara – Chitwan National Park. Drive to Chitwan National Park and your lodge. Late this afternoon head out on a thrilling elephant safari and the opportunity to experience the wildlife of Chitwan (B,L,D). Meghauli Serai (Rapti Villa with Plunge Pool) Day 9: Chitwan National Park. Early morning nature walk introducing the main features of the park. After breakfast head out on a full day jeep excursion into the national park (B,L,D). Meghauli Serai (Rapti Villa with Plunge Pool) Day 10: Chitwan – Kathmandu. Return flight to Kathmandu, and transfer to hotel (B). Dwarika’s Hotel (Heritage Deluxe Room) Day 11: Depart Kathmandu. Transfer to the airport (B). PRICE Twin Share Per Person: From $7,520 Solo Traveller: From $12,155

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HOSTED SMALL GROUP JOURNEYS In addition to the private journeys featured in this brochure, A&K also offers a range of Hosted Small Group Journeys around the globe. Below is a selection of what we offer in the region. For more details visit our website or request a copy of our Hosted Small Group Journeys brochure.

INDIA | 17 Days | The Pushkar Camel Fair with Suryaaveer Singh The princely state of Rajasthan is a riot of colour. From the vividly painted blue houses of Jodphur and the earthy hues of the desert regions, the pink sandstone of Jaipur and the glistening white marble of Agra, dazzling golden threaded saris and glowing red turbans, you’ll be surrounded by colour wherever you turn. A key part of this exciting journey is a two night visit to the lively Pushkar Fair where every year livestock traders gather into this wellknown Hindu pilgrimage town for the annual camel and cattle sale. Some 50,000 camels change hands during the fair and the town population swells to around 200,000 in an extraordinary display of sports, musical performances, fortune telling, puppeteers, dancing and novelty events.

Suryaaveer Singh Suryaaveer was born in the beautiful lake city of Udaipur to a renowned Rajput family with strong ancestral ties to his homeland. Having completed his university studies, his passion for travel instead saw him dedicate over 18 years to guiding and sharing his passion for his country with visitors from all over the world. His broad knowledge, enthusiasm and love for his native India make Suryaaveer a consummate Host and a joy to travel with.

DEPARTURE DATE: 23 Oct 2017. PRICE Twin Share Per Person: Single Supplement:

28 India & The Orient

$12,995 $7,275


INDIA | 12 Days | Ladakh: Nature, Festivals & Photography with Palani Mohan This extraordinary adventure into the remote and rugged landscapes of Ladakh will reveal a region shaped by staunch Buddhist traditions and a strategic location at the crossroads of ancient trade routes. With a history and culture more closely related to Tibet than India it is one of the highest continuously inhabited areas in the world with the sacred Indus River its backbone. Expect dramatic landscapes of high altitude desert, vast valleys and fluttering prayer flags, centuries old monasteries and temples plus fine examples of Buddhist art and some of the most gentle and hospitable people on the planet. Your host is a regular visitor to the area who will introduce you to the rich culture and help you create your own magical photographic mementos.

Palani Mohan Indian born, Australian raised, and now living in Hong Kong, Palani Mohan is an award-winning freelance photographer and published author. He has produced five books and photographic essays and his work is part of the collection of the National Portrait Gallery in London. Exhibited widely around the globe, his images have been shown at the prestigious Visa Pour L’Image in Perpignan, France and he has been recognised with numerous awards. He has travelled to Ladakh a number of times and his book ‘Hidden Faces of India’ features a chapter on the region.

DEPARTURE DATE: 30 Jun 2017. PRICE Twin Share Per Person: Single Supplement:

$9,795 $2,995

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INDIA & BEYOND HOTELS A Selection of A&K’s Favourites

BAGHVAN JUNGLE LODGE

BANJAAR TOLA TENTED CAMP

India - Pench National Park

India - Kanha National Park

There are just 12 charming suites here set in forest surrounds. The bungalows are beautifully appointed in contemporary style with indoor and outdoor showers, a private rooftop machan (covered jungle platform), high vaulted ceilings and overhead fans. Handmade Parsi tiles, woven hyacinth furniture and giant ebony chests complete the décor. An interactive open kitchen is a welcoming attraction for foodies and there’s a swimming pool to cool off in.

A heavenly location on the Banjaar River is fitting for this delightful tented property of 18 suites spread with minimal footprint out along the riverbank and into the sal forest. There are bamboo floors, canvas roof and walls and glass doors leading out onto a floating verandah overlooking the river. There’s also a swimming pool on site.

Wildlife: Tiger, leopard, wild dog, gaur, sambar, chital and excellent birdlife.

Wildlife: Tiger, leopard, jackal, striped hyena, the highly endangered barasingha (swamp deer) and over 200 recorded bird species.

MAHUA KOTHI JUNGLE LODGE

PASHAN GARH WILDERNESS LODGE

India - Bandhavgarh National Park

India - Panna National Park

This beautiful 12 suite lodge sprawls over 40 acres with private courtyards, shaded seating and traditional mud floors. The charming guest suites make good use of the lovely rich local textiles, sculptures and ornaments. En suite bathrooms are simply dreamy and there are bikes for exploring the area and a swimming pool.

Inspired by the stone houses of the region, there are 12 luxury stone cottages situated beside a small stream within 190 acres of jungle wilderness. Spacious interiors boast white marble, leather furniture and dramatic carved wooden Indian shutters producing an elegant rusticity. A swimming pool completes its attributes while the UNESCO World Heritage listed Hindu temples of Khajuraho are just 40km away.

Wildlife: Tiger, leopard, gaur (Indian Bison), chital (spotted deer), Sambar deer, dhole, nilgai, wild boar, chinkara, sloth bear, rhesus macaque, black faced langur, jungle cat, hyena, porcupine, jackal, fox and wild dog.

30 India & The Orient

Wildlife: Tiger, sloth bear, leopard, wolf, hyena, jackal, sambar, chital and wild boar.


RESIDENCE

UGA BAY

Sri Lanka – Colombo

Sri Lanka – Pasikuda

Nestled between leafy Park Street and the lakeside Buddhist shrine of Gangarama, Residence by Uga Escapes is amongst the most unique boutique hotels in Colombo. Built in the 19th century, the halls and ballrooms of this grand Victorian townhouse once welcomed British governors, Indian maharajas, European nobility and the cream of colonial Ceylon society. Today, Uga Residence is a unique 11 suite luxury hotel with elegant, contemporary and comfortable appointments. Spacious, leafy gardens and private courtyards, a gourmet restaurant, swimming pool, gym and bar make this a refined choice.

Uga Bay on Sri Lanka’s east coast is one of the finest resorts in the country. Each of its 46 rooms and suits offers breathtaking views of the Pasikudah Bay across the lush palm fringed garden of Uga Bay. The natural beauty of the location is complemented by the hotel’s fusion of Mediterranean and tropical architecture. The underground spa at Uga Bay offers spellbinding Indian Ocean views while you enjoy spa treatments featuring Balinese and western massages, body rituals and therapies. There’s plenty to do in addition to relaxing by the pool or on the beach with snorkelling, fishing, diving and other water sports.

AMANGALLA

AMANWELLA

Sri Lanka – Galle

Sri Lanka – Tangalle

In the historic port of Galle, Amangalla sits within the ramparts of the 17th century Galle Fort, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Named after the Sanskrit word for ‘peace’, and galla, the Sinhalese word for the town of Galle, the resort reveals the Fort’s daily activities and its rich legacy. Offering views of the resort’s 200-year-old gardens and of the Fort and harbour beyond, Amangalla provides for the leisurely exploration of this historic trading port and the surrounding countryside.

Located in a mature coconut grove fronting a crescent-shaped beach, Amanwella is a seaside resort offering 30 contemporary suites, each with private plunge pool and terrace. The resort’s suites are linked by pathways along a landscaped rise with beach and ocean views. Guests can relax on the expansive terrace surrounding the main pool or on the sand beach. The seaside town of Tangalle is nearby and a short stroll will reveal village life and Sri Lanka’s diverse flora and fauna.

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THE MALDIVES Explore the Indian Ocean with a selection of A&K favourite hideways.

MILAIDHOO ISLAND | 8 Days | Baa Atoll Opening in November 2016, Milaidhoo Island Maldives is a boutique luxury resort in the Baa Atoll UNESCO biosphere reserve, close to Hanifaru Bay, 126km north west of Male. It’s perfect for nature lovers as its own coral reef, which completely circles the island, is a protected area and noted as an outstanding snorkelling and diving site in its own right. The tiny beautiful island, abundant with tropical greenery, measures just 300m by 180m and is fringed by soft white sand beaches. Offering barefoot informality, each of the 50 spacious air-conditioned villas has its own private freshwater pool on the sundeck and opens up 180° to allow the natural beauty of the island into the villa. Clever design ensures all villas have ocean views. The custom-made furnishings and thoughtful designs are Maldivian inspired, from natural wooden floors to the thatched rooves all made by master craftsmen specifically for Milaidhoo. An island host is on hand to ensure every detail of the stay is perfect, from arranging spa appointments and excursions to ensuring the private wine fridge in the villa is stocked with the guest’s personal favourites. The three restaurants and two bars, offer outstanding dining in wonderfully informal settings. No shoes are required. Ever. The over-water spa has four treatment suites and complimentary yoga and meditation classes take place in the open-air over-water pavilion. Leisure activities include sailing, catamarans, kayaks, a 24-hour gym, yacht trips, dolphin cruises, whale shark spotting, manta ray watching, conservation activities with the resident marine biologist, fishing, diving, snorkelling and an open-air infinity pool. PRICE Twin Share Per Person: From US$5,255 Solo Traveller: From US$9,905

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BAROS | 8 Days | North Male Atoll Award-winning Baros Maldives is a small tropical island ringed by a vibrant reef and golden beach with 45 thatched villas nestled amongst swaying palms and 30 water villas poised over a translucent lagoon. Created from timber and sandstone, each elegant villa has a king size bed, with en suite bathroom, in a garden courtyard or with a panoramic lagoon view. Eleven have their own beachside plunge pool and all have enviable seclusion enabling guests to perfectly relax. Blissfully private, the villas at Baros Maldives equally suit the romantic couple, the incognito celebrity, the overworked executive and those seeking to de-stress. With three gourmet restaurants, a palm grove bar and an intimate cocktail lounge, Baros Maldives also has discreet, knowledgeable staff who can arrange excursions, organise a romantic sandbank dinner, a lagoon cruise by local dhoni, an eco-friendly diving or snorkelling safari. The Spa features the finest botanical therapies as well as yoga to rejuvenate the spirit as well as the body. PRICE Twin Share Per Person: From US$2,745 Solo Traveller: From US$5,055

AMILLA FUSHI | 8 Days | Baa Atoll Amilla Fushi is an architecturally striking new Maldivian retreat located in the UNESCO-protected Baa Atoll where crystal clear waters and white beaches are the order of the day. Not your typical Maldivian retreat, Amilla Fushi offers 67 rooms in a series of cool white linear villas with a choice of overwater reef, lagoon and beach houses to residences and the new Wellness Treehouse. Australian celebrity chef Luke Mangan commands the island cuisine with dining options to suit all from the sophisticated but relaxed experience at Lonu to the 8,000 bottle Wine Shop and Cellar Door and the poolside Baazaar. Other island features include the Javvu Spa where a free 50-minute spa treatment is available to all guests, private beaches, diving and watersports centre, tennis court, marina, kids club and free WiFi throughout. All water sports and child care are complimentary and access to the resort is by 30 minute seaplane flight from MalĂŠ International Airport. PRICE Twin Share Per Person: From US$4,595 Solo Traveller: From US$8,425 1300 851 800 | abercrombiekent.com.au 33


THE MALDIVES Explore the Indian Ocean with a selection of A&K favourite hideways.

SHANGRI-LA’S VILLINGILI RESORT & SPA | 8 Days | Addu Atoll Situated in the far south of the Maldives is Shangri-La’s Villingili Resort & Spa, a luxury hideaway where all experiences are bespoke and tailored to suit the interests and desires of each guest. Just three kilometres long, this boutique-style all-villa resort is surrounded by a striking coral reef with 17,000 coconut trees, a picturesque coastline and miles of white sandy beaches. The resort comprises 132 tranquil villas in a variety of styles from private water villas and tropical tree houses to pool villas and beachside residences. For the ultimate experience, the resort features two Presidential Villas. All villas feature a myriad of luxurious amenities and expansive layouts with spacious sundecks, patios, daybeds and lounge areas. Memorable experiences await with indulgent treatments at CHI, The Spa, a visit to the health and fitness club, a round of golf on the Maldives’ only golf course, dolphin cruises, sailing, snorkelling, diving and more. The resort boasts a choice of restaurants from fine dining at Dr. Ali’s to al fresco fare in Javvu and Mediterranean-inspired dishes at Fashala. Dine by Design gives guests the option of destination dining in different locales around the island. Access is by 70 minute domestic flight to Addu Atoll and speedboat transfer to resort. PRICE Twin Share Per Person: From US$3,370 Solo Traveller: From US$6,075

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SONEVA JANI | 8 Days | Noonu Atoll Crystal clear waters, white sand beaches and a breezy tropical climate. Welcome to Soneva Jani, the newest resort from Soneva opening in October 2016. Located on the island of Medhufaru in the Noonu Atoll the resort boasts pure white beaches, picture-perfect palm trees, a sparkling turquoise lagoon and dense tropical vegetation with just 24 overwater and 32 island villas. Villas are decorated in the signature Soneva rustic chic style, each with its own private pool surrounded by ample areas for sunbathing and taking in the mesmerising ocean vistas. The 2 and 3 bedroom Water Retreats boast their own private water slide while the 4 bedroom reserves are the last word in style and comfort. One of the largest islands in the Maldives and highly accessible, Medhufaru is only 35 minutes by seaplane from Malé International Airport and one hour by speedboat from Soneva Fushi. PRICE Twin Share Per Person: From US$6,780 Solo Traveller: From US$12,645

SONEVA FUSHI | 8 Days | Baa Atoll Soneva Fushi is the original desert island hideaway with gently swaying palm trees, perfect white sand, even a colony of nesting turtles. The resort’s 57 vast villas (with from one to nine bedrooms) are hidden amongst dense foliage within touching distance of a protected pristine coral reef. Impeccable, intuitive service is provided by Mr. & Ms. Friday butlers who know what guests want before they want it. Soneva Fushi is committed to the Soneva Group’s SLOW LIFE philosophy: Sustainable-Local-Organic-Wellness Learning-Inspiring-Fun-Experiences with a philosophy of “no news, no shoes”. Bicycles are available to explore the island, there’s an open-air cinema, icecream bar and chocolate room plus the unique glass studio for interactive glass blowing sessions. Activities include cruises, private sandbank picnics, breathtaking diving or fascinating cultural visits to nearby islands. Other resort facilities include a worldclass dive centre, the Six Senses spa and a health club with yoga. There are two bars and two restaurants serving Asian or Mediterranean cuisine plus an extensive wine list. Desert island picnics are also available. Soneva in Aqua, the pioneering floating villa concept, is now sailing from Soneva Fushi. PRICE Twin Share Per Person: From US$5,065 Solo Traveller: From US$9,220

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The Orient Mysterious and exotic, the countries of the Far East hold great allure and fascination. The cultured traveller is well at home here discovering age-old secrets, remarkable landscapes and fascinating experiences. From the impressive architecture of Uzbekistan to China, the world’s most populous nation, the charming delights of Myanmar and the culinary appeal of Vietnam to the unspoiled attractions of Laos, tranquil Thailand and fastpaced Japan, there’s a well organised infrastructure here supported by elegant and sophisticated hotels. Travelling with A&K throughout the Orient, you can expect an affable uniformed face to meet you at every turn, friendly and efficient service at your chosen hotels, the most suitable rooms booked, the finest transport, worrisome extras taken care of, restaurant reservations made and someone on call 24/7.

When to Go Weather patterns throughout Asia are varied. In the tropics of south-east Asia there is little seasonal temperature variation (average daily high in the 30’s) with monsoon season from May to November. A vast country like China has enormous variations but in general spring (April – May) and autumn (September – October) are best. Japan is best between March and November. While the optimum time to visit Central Asia is April – October.

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Go Beyond the Ordinary At A&K we pride ourselves on the ability to offer unique one of a kind experiences that are guaranteed to make your journey with us unforgettable. These are just a few of our hand-picked favourites.

Celebrate wealth and health in a spiritual Tibetan ceremony

Remote Angkor temples by helicopter without the crowds

Light oil lamps to illuminate the magnificent Shwedagon Pagoda

Contemporary Vietnamese art with leading gallery director

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Highlights of China

Forbidden City, Beijing

CHINA | 12 Days | Beijing – Xian – Yangzi Cruise - Shanghai MONGOLIA

CHINA

Beijing YELLOW SEA Shanghai Hangzhou

Xian

Y Chengdu Chongqing

g an

zi R

iver

Guilin

Lijiang Kunming MYANMAR

LAOS

EAST CHINA SEA

Yichang

Hong Kong

SOUTH CHINA SEA Air Cruise

On this perfect introduction to China you’ll discover a vast country filled with diverse beauty, culture and tradition with iconic attractions aplenty. From the magnificent Great Wall of China, the iconic Three Gorges of the Yangzi River, the ancient Terracotta Warriors to the glittering metropolis of Shanghai, China offers a kaleidoscope of stunning scenery, ancient religions and one of the world’s oldest and continuous civilisations.

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Day 1: Arrive Beijing. Arrive into the Chinese capital where you are escorted to your luxury hotel. The Peninsula Beijing (Deluxe Room) Day 2: Beijing. Start the day in the country’s cultural and political heart with a guided stroll around Tiananmen Square, the largest in the world, and continue on foot into the Forbidden City, home to the Imperial family during the Ming era. Visit the beautifully restored Ming Temple of Heaven for a Tai Chi demonstration and the nearby pearl market – a must for shoppers (B,L). The Peninsula Beijing (Deluxe Room) Day 3: Beijing. Visit the Great Wall of China at the Mutianyu section, away from the crowds. Ride the cable car up to the wall for a walk along the impressive ramparts and on your return a drive past the Olympic sites. There’s also a pedicab ride into the hutongs, Beijing’s maze of old neighbourhoods (B,L). The Peninsula Beijing (Deluxe Room) Day 4: Beijing – Xian. Transfer for the flight* to the old Tang Dynasty capital Xian, start of the ancient Silk Road. En route to the hotel visit the small but well-designed Yangling Museum, which houses archaeological discoveries from Han dynasty tombs, and the well preserved ancient city walls (B). Shangri-La Hotel Xian (Horizon Floor Room) Day 5: Xian. A dazzling up close experience with the remarkable army of Terracotta Warriors, regarded by many as the most sensational archaeological discovery of the 20th century. After a delicious and authentic Shaanxi dumpling lunch visit the Xian Museum and Big Wild Goose Pagoda (B,L). Shangri-La Hotel Xian (Horizon Floor Room)

Day 6: Xian – Chongqing. Transfer to the airport for the early flight* to Chongqing. Before boarding Sanctuary Yangzi Explorer visit the Chongqing Zoo where the giant panda and red panda enclosures are a highlight. A short tour of the museum is included before arriving at the pier (B,L,D). Sanctuary Yangzi Explorer (Deluxe cabin, Xiling Deck) Days 7-8: Cruising the Yangzi. Considered one of China’s iconic experiences, the next two days are a river journey through the breathtaking Three Gorges with a variety of shore excursions included en route. Pass through Qutang Gorge, the narrowest stretch of the river, Wu Gorge and the Shennong Stream for a traditional sampan trip, and Xiling Gorge, the longest of the three. See thriving riverside towns, temples, pagodas, dramatic cliff faces and sheer peaks and try your hand at Chinese brush painting, calligraphy, Tai Chi and tea appreciation (B,L,D). Sanctuary Yangzi Explorer (Deluxe cabin, Xiling Deck) Day 9: Yichang – Shanghai. Visit the impressive Three Gorges Dam, China’s biggest construction project since the Great Wall. There’s an exclusive visit to the Exhibition Centre and a tour of Yichang before the flight* to Shanghai, the ‘Paris of the East’ (B,L). The Peninsula Shanghai (Deluxe Riverview Room) Day 10: Shanghai. The glittering metropolis of Shanghai is China’s commercial heart with diversions aplenty. Visit the Ming era Yu gardens, the grand colonial waterfront strip, the Bund and the Old Town. The afternoon is at leisure before a lively and energetic acrobatic show this evening (B,L). The Peninsula Shanghai (Deluxe Riverview Room)


The Great Wall

Day 11: Design Your Day Shanghai. Plot your own path. Visit the charming tree-lined avenues of the French Concession, one of the original European settlements, with many fine examples of 19th and 20th century architecture. Or take a journey into the countryside to the peaceful waterside town of Zhujiajiao where a boat ride on the canals is the best way to appreciate its well preserved Ming architecture and ancient stone bridges (B,L). The Peninsula Shanghai (Deluxe Riverview Room) Day 12: Depart Shanghai. The adventure in China comes to an end as the high speed Maglev train spirits you to the airport where your journey ends (B) PRICE Twin Share Per Person: From $8,695 Solo Traveller: From $15,255 *Flight not included. Terracotta Warriors, Xian

Antique Chinese coins 1300 851 800 | abercrombiekent.com.au 39


SANCTUARY YANGZI EXPLORER The Sanctuary Retreats portfolio brings the boutique River Cruising experience to guests with authenticity.

Sanctuary Yangzi Explorer

Dynasty dining room

Suite

CHINA | CRUISING THE YANGZI The elegant Sanctuary Yangzi Explorer sets the standard for luxury cruising in China with 3 & 4 night cruises between Chongqing and Yichang (and v.v). Friendly and intimate, on board service is a highlight with an atmosphere more private club than cruise ship. Features on ‘Highlights of China’ (see page 36). HIGHLIGHTS

LUXURY ON BOARD

The most celebrated stretch of the Yangzi is the spectacular Three Gorges where A&K uniquely tailors shore excursions. Highlights include the river town of Fengdu, the crystal clear waters of Shennong Stream and a ride in a traditional sampan. Qutang Gorge, famous for its rolling waters and sheer cliffs, is the shortest and narrowest of the three, while Wu is characterised by majestic forest crowned peaks. Xiling, the longest, finishes at the Three Gorges Dam, the largest construction project ever undertaken.

Offering 38 cabins, 24 suites and 4 themed suites over four decks, the ship boasts the largest and best appointed cabins on the river. Each has floor to ceiling picture windows, private balconies and en suite bathroom. Dining is a delight with a team of internationally trained chefs delivering innovative à la carte menus featuring Chinese and continental cuisine served with complimentary house wines and other refreshments at lunch and dinner. The ship boasts the highest crew to passenger ratio on the river of 1:1 delivering personalised service.

DAILY ACTIVITIES Complementing the natural beauty of the river is a rich programme of shore excursions and shipboard activities which highlight the wealth of China’s cultural tradition as well as the river’s history and ecology. Tai Chi classes, Chinese cooking and silk embroidery are just some of the diversions available. In between activities the Huang Ding Spa beckons. There’s also a fitness centre, sauna and beauty salon. 40 India & The Orient

FAMILIES The specially tailored ‘Summer Camp’ welcomes families on four night cruises upstream from Yichang to Chongqing with exciting activities planned to keep all entertained. There is Chinese Opera mask painting, introductory Mandarin lessons, cooking, kite making, movie nights and early morning Tai Chi.

FACTS • Launch year: 2008 • Length: 91.5m • Beam: 16.4m • Draught: 2.8m • Passengers: 124 WHAT’S INCLUDED •All three meals during full sailing days and breakfast on day of disembarkation •Beverages with meals including house wine, local beer, soft drinks and water •Entrance fees as part of scheduled sightseeing •Pre-arranged entertainment and onboard activities


CHINA EXTENSIONS Lengthen your A&K holiday with one of these add-ons.

Yungang Grottoes, Datong

Lijiang, Yunnan

DATONG & PINGYAO | 4 DAYS

CULTURES OF YUNNAN | 6 DAYS

Venture off the beaten track and uncover some of the highlights of the Shanxi province to the west of Beijing. There are two important World Heritage listed cultural sites included and an outstanding boutique residence in the old walled city of Pingyao where red silk lanterns glow on every street corner.

For blue skies, fresh air, natural beauty and a rich cultural heritage the mountainous Yunnan Province in China’s south-west is the place to go. It is the most geographically diverse province as well as being home to a third of China’s ethnic minorities, a wide variety of plant and animal species and strong Buddhist traditions.

Day 1: Arrive Datong. Early morning arrival into Shanxi province. Begin the day with a visit to the ancient Chinese Buddhist grottoes at Yungang, a World Heritage listed site. The grottoes represent an outstanding collection of Chinese stone carvings from the 5th and 6th centuries. Touring also includes the well preserved Huayan-Si Temple from the Liao and Jin dynasties. After lunch, proceed to Shanhua Monastery and the 600 year old Nine Dragon Screen, the oldest and largest glazed screen in the country depicting images of oxen, dogs, deer rabbits and other animals (L). Holiday Inn Datong (Superior Room)

Day 1: Kunming – Lijiang (2,400M). On arrival in Kunming you are assisted with the onward flight* to Lijiang. A private A&K welcome and transfer to your beautiful all-villa lodging. Amandayan (Courtyard Suite)

Day 2: Datong – Pingyao. Travel overland south-west to Pingyao visiting the wooden Hanging Temple on sacred Hengshan mountain en route. Continue to the Jinci temple complex and afterwards visit Qiao’s Compound, an 18th century courtyard estate comprising over 300 rooms and an ancestral temple. Located north-west of Pingyao, the site is most famous for its appearance in the film ‘Raise the Red Lantern’ (B,L,D). Jing’s Residence (Courtyard Room) Day 3: Pingyao. A day spent in this atmospheric Ming-era town. Climb the 15th century city wall and walk along the ramparts. Visit some of the city’s temples which house stages where operatic performances were conducted on special holidays. The oldest stage is in the Cheng Huan Miao. Later this morning visit a local home to see intricate Ming architecture up close. After lunch, visit the beautifully maintained Daoist Temple and finish the day exploring the local market (B,L,D). Jing’s Residence (Courtyard Room) Day 4: Depart Pingyao. Transfer to Pingyao train station for your high speed train to Xian (B). PRICE Twin Share Per Person: From $3,085 Solo Traveller: From $5,185

Day 2: Lijiang. This morning tour the charming UNESCO listed Old Town with time to stroll through the cobbled streets, crossing its ancient timber footbridges over the network of spring-fed canals. Afternoon at leisure (B). Amandayan (Courtyard Suite) Day 3: Lijiang – Shangri-La (3,300M). Journey overland to Shangri-La (formally Zhongdian) on the Yunnan-Tibet Highway with a stop at the ‘First Bend’ in the Yangzi River a major landmark for all Chinese. Visit Shigu Village with its large 16th century stone drum memorial and continue on to the dramatic Tiger Leaping Gorge where a short hike reveals the Yangzi River roaring 4,000m below on the gorge floor. Arrive into Shangri-La late this afternoon (B,L). MGallery Songtsam Retreat (Superior Suite) Day 4: Shangri-La. Morning visit to the Songzanlin Monastery, the largest in Yunnan, with a special visit to the Protector Temple. Continue on to the 800 year old working monastery, Ringha, situated on top of a sacred hill. A highlight this afternoon is tea with a traditional Tibetan family (B,L). MGallery Songtsam Retreat (Superior Suite) Day 5: Shangri-La. A day exploring the area around Shangri-La. Visit the Napa Hai Forest Reserve, the Nishi black pottery village to watch artisans shaping the clay with their hands and wooden tools, the Scenic Moon Crescent Gorge and the Marriage of the Waters. A traditional Tibetan hot pot dinner tonight (B,L,D). MGallery Songtsam Retreat (Superior Suite) Day 6: Depart Shangri-La. Transfer to the airport (B). PRICE Twin Share Per Person: From $4,895 Solo Traveller: From $9,045 * Flight not included 1300 851 800 | abercrombiekent.com.au 41


Along the Silk Road

Sunrise at Jiayu Pass Fort

CHINA | 9 Days | Jiayuguan – Dunhuang – Urumqi – Kashgar KAZAKHSTAN

MONGOLIA

Urumqi Turfan Kashgar

NEPAL

Jiayuguan Dunhuang

Beijing

CHINA

INDIA Road Air

For 2,000 years the ancient Silk Road connected China with the Mediterranean via a network of overland trade routes. Merchants travelled with caravans of camels loaded with rubies, jade, metals, amber, musk and of course silk. Discover a portion of this vast hinterland on a week long journey through rugged landscapes and once-flourishing oasis cities and outposts. Highlights include important Buddhist and Uighur sights as well as the famous cities of Dunhuang, Urumqi and Turfan.

Day 1: Arrive Jiayuguan. Arrive into the remote city of Jiayuguan which marks the end of the Great Wall which you will visit at Jiayu Pass Fort. Of all the passes on the Great Wall, Jiayuguan is the most intact ancient military building. Continue to the Wei-Jin Tombs, a remarkable 13 square kilometre underground gallery which is home to over 1,000 ancient tombs with intriguing frescoes. Arrive at your hotel later today (L). The Holiday Plaza Hotel Jiayuguan (Executive Deluxe Room) Day 2: Jiayuguan - Dunhuang. This morning travel westwards to Dunhuang, an important stop on the ancient Silk Road. On arrival visit the museum where there is a collection of artifacts from the powerful Western Han period as well as scrolls from the famous Mogao Caves. Time to visit the town’s central market as well as the Mingshashan Sand Dunes and the extraordinary Crescent Lake, an ancient oasis in the middle of the desert (B,L). The Silk Road Dunhuang Hotel (Deluxe Room) Day 3: Dunhuang. After breakfast visit the Mogao Caves, also known as the Thousand Buddha Grottoes. These represent the most well-preserved repository of Buddhist art in the world and date back to the 4th century. Admire the wealth of statuary and frescoes. After lunch head to Yumen Guam Pass, a strategic point on the ancient Silk Road and gateway from central China to the western regions (B,L). The Silk Road Dunhuang Hotel (Deluxe Room) Day 4: Dunhuang – Urumqi. This morning visit the western counterpart of the Mogao Caves, the Western Thousand Buddha Caves. After lunch transfer to the airport for the flight* to Urumqi via Lanzhou. Transfer to hotel (B,L). The Universal Hotel (Executive Deluxe Room) Day 5: Urumqi. Travel overland to Nanshan in the Tianshan Mountains for some stunning scenery stopping en route to visit local Kazakh families

42 India & The Orient

for an insight into local life. After lunch return to Urumqi and visit the Xinjiang Museum with its impressive collection of well-preserved Caucasian mummies (B,L). The Universal Hotel (Executive Deluxe Room) Day 6: Urumqi – Turfan – Urumqi. Visit the town of Turfan and the impressive ruins of the ancient city of Gaochang. Built in the 2nd century BC as a garrison town it became a key point on the Silk Road. There is time to explore the ruined temples, palaces and ramparts before heading to the 18th century Emin Minaret built of brick and designed in the style of Iran’s pre-Savafid architecture. After lunch with a local Uighur family visit the ancient Jiaohe ruins, one of the oldest and best-preserved earthen city in the world. Later on, learn about the ingenious Kerez irrigation system before returning to Urumqi (B,L). The Universal Hotel (Executive Deluxe Room) Day 7: Urumqi – Kashgar. This morning fly* to Kashgar, the last great oasis towns before reaching the Pamir Mountains. After lunch discover Kashgar’s old quarter with its alleyways, traditional workshops and houses on a walking tour (B,D). Kashgar Jin Jiang International Hotel (Deluxe room) Day 8: Kashgar. Visit the Id Kah Mosque, the largest in Central Asia dating back to the 15th century and the mausoleum of Abjak Hoja, an impressive building steeped in history. After lunch in a local Uighur family compound return to your hotel for an afternoon at leisure (B,L). Kashgar Jin Jiang International Hotel (Deluxe room) Day 9: Depart Kashgar. Transfer to the airport where your journey ends (B). PRICE Twin Share Per Person: From $7,195 Solo Traveller: From $11,380 *Flight not included


EXPLORE MORE OF CHINA Get more out of your holiday and explore the region in greater depth. Here are some recommendations to complement your visit. Ask your Travel Specialist how best to personalise your journey or visit www.abercrombiekent.com.au to learn more.

Fishing with cormorants, Yangshuo

Giant Panda

GUILIN

SICHUAN PROVINCE

The dreamy landscapes of Guilin have inspired Chinese painters and poets for generations. The Li River and its dramatic limestone formations are a highlight with a leisurely boat trip between Guilin and the market town of Yangshuo revealing some of the country’s finest scenery cruising past bamboo groves and villages where locals still practice cormorant fishing.

The mountainous province of Sichuan is one of the best places in China to see the Giant Panda as well as a multitude of UNESCO World Heritage sites including the Jiuzhaigou nature reserve and Emeishan sacred mountain. The landscape is breathtaking and there are a number of important Buddhist sites, ethnic minorities and a famously spicy, fresh and fragrant cuisine.

A&K RECOMMENDS

A&K RECOMMENDS

‘Guilin Extension’ | 3 Days

‘Sichuan Delights’ from Chengdu | 8 Days

Tea plantations, Hangzhou

Potala Palace, Lhasa

HANGZHOU

TIBET

One of the seven ancient Chinese capitals, Hangzhou is famous for its history, culture and scenery. The city’s beautiful West Lake has inspired many famous artists, poets and writers and the pagodas, pavilions, temples and gardens around it are dazzling. In the old town there are magnificent examples of courtyard architecture while outside of town are tea plantations and lush forested hills. Shopping for silk and a tea appreciation ceremony are highly recommended in Hangzhou.

Breathtaking mountain scenery and sweeping landscapes are commonplace in this remote and isolated region. A strong Buddhist culture exists and there are many beautiful historic and religious sites to visit including the Potala Palace, monasteries and important prayer circuits. Its landscape is dramatic with high plains and fast flowing rivers, yaks and nomads. In Tsedang the old quarter is a highlight with views from Yumbulhakhang Fort outstanding. Samye Monastery is the oldest of all Tibet’s monasteries while the Jokhang in Lhasa upholds ancient traditions of pilgrimage.

A&K RECOMMENDS

‘Hangzhou Extension’ | 3 Days

A&K RECOMMENDS

‘Roof of the World’ from Lhasa | 6 Days 1300 851 800 | abercrombiekent.com.au 43


Highlights of Uzbekistan

Registan Square, Samarkand

UZBEKISTAN | 8 Days | Tashkent – Samarkand – Bukhara – Tashkent

KAZAKHSTAN UZBEKISTAN Tashkent

Khiva

Bukhara

Samarkand

TURKMENISTAN Air Road Rail

AFGHANISTAN

Home to Central Asia’s most impressive architecture, Uzbekistan has ancient ruins and relics aplenty. Mosques, minarets and mausoleums are abundant and the cities are steeped in the legend of the ancient Silk Road. On this unique private journey you visit two of the region’s most fabled cities – Samarkand and Bukhara – seeing their religious attractions, trawling colourful market places and learning about the rich Uzbek handicraft traditions.

44 India & The Orient

Day 1: Arrive Tashkent. Arrive into the Uzbekistan capital and transfer to the hotel. Lotte City Hotel Tashkent Palace (Standard Room) Day 2: Tashkent. A full day exploring the sprawling city of Tashkent, Uzbekistan’s 2,000-year-old capital. See the city’s highlights including the Khast-Imam Islamic complex, the Museum of Applied Arts, the 16th century Kukeldash madrassah and the old town. Wander through Amir Timur Square and visit the Tashkent underground, where each station displays a specific architectural and artistic decoration (B,L). Lotte City Hotel Tashkent Palace (Standard Room) Day 3: Tashkent – Samarkand. An early start for the high-speed train to the ancient city of Samarkand. On arrival you are transferred to the hotel. Later today head out with your guide to explore Uzbekistan’s most glorious city. Its long history is most famously linked to the legacy of the great 14th century ruler Tamerlane whose aim was to create the richest city on earth. Visit his famous mausoleum and Registan Square said to be the most spectacular architectural ensemble in Central Asia (B,L). Hotel Grand Samarkand Superior (Standard Room) Day 4: Samarkand. This morning is a chance to learn from experts about Uzbek handicrafts when you visit an ancient mulberry paper factory and silk carpet factory. After lunch a visit to the Shah-i-Zinda necropolis to see examples of beautiful majolica tilework, next visit the impressive Bibi Khanym Mosque, one of the largest in Central Asia, a local bazaar and the Ulugh Beg Observatory (B,L). Hotel Grand Samarkand Superior (Standard Room)

Day 5: Samarkand – Bukhara. Today you are driven west to Bukhara (approx. 4.5 hours). After lunch at a local restaurant enjoy a half day city tour including a visit to the Silk Road tea house for tea and treats (B,L). Omar Kayyam Hotel or similar (Standard Room) Day 6: Bukhara. The magical city of Bukhara is over 2,000 years old and is the most complete example of a medieval city in Central Asia. Touring here includes the important religious attractions of the city including the Bolo Hauz Mosque and Ismail Samani mausoleum which dates from the 10th century, Kalyan Square and the summer palace of the Emir (B,L). Omar Kayyam Hotel or similar (Standard Room) Day 7: Bukhara – Tashkent. A full day at leisure in Bukhara with late check-out and transfer to the airport for your flight to Tashkent. Transfer to the hotel for overnight (B). Lotte City Hotel Tashkent Palace (Standard Room) Day 8: Depart Tashkent. Transfer to the airport for your departure flight (B). PRICE Twin Share Per Person: From $7,715 Solo Traveller: From $11,260


Nomads and Gers

Statue of Genghis Khan, Ulaanbaatar

MONGOLIA | 7 Days | Ulaanbaatar – Gobi Desert – Ulaanbaatar Day 1: Arrive Ulaanbaatar. Arrive into the Mongolian capital where you are met and transferred to the hotel. Shangri-La Hotel (Deluxe room)

RUSSIA

MONGOLIA Ulaanbaatar Flaming Cliffs

Dalanzadgad Yol Valley

Air

CHINA

Discover the fascinating traditional nomadici v e r R culture of Mongolia, its rich Tibetan a n g z i Y Buddhist tradition and emerging modern democracy. Explore the mysterious Gobi desert which lies between the Siberian wilderness to the north and the Tibetan Plateau to the south. Visit archaeological sites, look for endemic wildlife, stay in a traditional ger and meet local herders to understand their unique way of life.

Day 2: Ulaanbaatar. This morning visit Gandan Monastery, the seat of Buddhism in Mongolia. Stroll through the monastery grounds, hear the low tones of the horns used to call the lamas to the temple and observe their daily rituals. Afterwards visit the newly remodelled National History Museum for an excellent overview of Mongolia’s history and culture and the Zanabazar Fine Arts Museum which contains one of the best collections of Buddhist art and artifacts in the world. This evening, drive to Zaisan Memorial and enjoy a panoramic view of the city, river and surrounding countryside (B,L,D). Shangri-La Hotel (Deluxe room) Day 3: Ulaanbaatar – Gobi Desert. Transfer to the airport for a flight south to Dalanzadgad. On arrival you are driven to Yol Valley National Park in the foothills of the Altai Mountains. A hike through the valley leads to the habitat of indigenous vulturelike Lammergeiers, Altai snowcocks, ibex, yaks and Argali mountain sheep. Continue on to your eco-lodge located near the Gurvansaikhan Gobi National Park. After dinner, enjoy an evening of stargazing with a leading mongolian astrophysicist (B,L,D). Three Camel Lodge (Ger) Day 4: Gobi Desert. Drive to Tugrugyn Shiree, best known for its famous fossil find, the ‘Fighting Dinosaurs’ which was discovered in the 1970s. Explore the white-sandstone escarpment and nearby sand dunes. Later on visit Bulgan, a small town near a natural spring which has one of the only

farms in the Gobi supplying local ger camps with fruit and vegetables. On your way back to the lodge visit one of the local families for a display of nomadic culture (B,L,D). Three Camel Lodge (Ger) Day 5: Gobi Desert. This morning you are driven into the Moltsog Els sand dunes where you’ll explore on foot or by Bactrian camel. You also have the opportunity to visit a local camel herding family. This afternoon head out to the Flaming Cliffs to admire the orange glow at dusk. It was here in 1923 that Dr. Roy Chapman Andrews and his exploration team from the American Museum of Natural History found the first nest of dinosaur eggs (B,L,D). Three Camel Lodge (Ger) Day 6: Gobi Desert – Ulaanbaatar. Return to the capital by air before visiting the Genghis Khan Statue Complex. This extraordinary 40m tall statue of Genghis Khan on horseback is considered the biggest of its kind in the world. This afternoon is at leisure before a traditional performance of Mongolian dancers and khoomi throat singers (B,L,D). Shangri-La Hotel (Deluxe room) Day 7: Depart Ulaanbaatar. Transfer to the airport where your journey ends (B). PRICE Twin Share Per Person: From $7,995 Solo Traveller: From $15,315

1300 851 800 | abercrombiekent.com.au 45


Myanmar in Style

Ancient Pagodas, Bagan

rwady Rive

Ayeya

Chindw

INDIA

in Ri

ver

r

MYANMAR | 11 Days | Yangon – Mandalay – Ayeyarwady – Bagan – Inle Lake - Yangon

CHINA Bhamo

MYANMAR Pyin Oo Lwin Heho

Mandalay Bagan

LAOS

Inle Lake Ngapali BAY OF BENGAL Yangon

THAILAND Mawlamyaing

Air Cruise

This journey is for travellers seeking an in-depth experience in Myanmar. It includes a cruise on board Sanctuary Ananda, a luxurious vessel custom built for the country’s rivers and tributaries. During the cruise there are special cultural inclusions such as performances of traditional music and dance, an ethnic dinner, lectures, cooking demonstrations, yoga, meditation and cigar making lessons. The journey also takes in charming Inle Lake and Yangon.

AKP supported project: Sin Kyun Village Project 46 India & The Orient

Day 1: Arrive Yangon. Arrive and transfer to your newly refurbished grand colonial hotel. This evening visit the dazzling Shwedagon Pagoda, a remarkable structure with a gold stupa that rises 98m above the city, and observe the lively activity of worshippers. The Strand Hotel (Superior Suite) Day 2: Yangon – Mandalay. Fly north to Mandalay, the Burmese capital before the colonial era. Transfer to the ship in time for lunch. This afternoon visit the pagoda sprinkled Sagaing Hill, an important religious and monastic centre. Visit a monastic school and orphanage before taking in the breathtaking views from the Soon U Ponya Shin Pagoda. Later today visit a textile workshop and U Bein Bridge, the longest teak bridge in the world, for a memorable sunset (B,L,D). Sanctuary Ananda (Deluxe Suite Bagan Deck) Day 3: Cruising the Ayeyarwady River. Early this morning Sanctuary Ananda sails north to Sin Kyun, a quaint village just north of Mandalay sponsored by Sanctuary Retreats Philanthropy where farming and hat making are the primary industry. Take an optional tour to witness firsthand the way of life in this unspoilt location seldom viewed by outsiders. Return to the ship and sail towards Pakokku passing Mingun and its unfinished pagoda en route. Time to relax as the ship continues south admiring villages, pagodas and hills as you pass. A variety of on board activities will be offered including a longyi (sarong) and thanaka (cosmetic) demonstration and a talk on Myanmar – covering the country’s incredibly rich history, the recent controversial decades and the outlook for the future of The Golden Land (B,L,D). Sanctuary Ananda (Deluxe Suite Bagan Deck)

Day 4: Cruising the Ayeyarwady River. This morning is a cooking class and market visit with the ship’s Executive Chef. This afternoon sail on to Bagan and visit a small pagoda complex before heading to the great golden Shwezigon Pagoda which houses a bone and tooth of the Gautama Buddha and is sacred to the Burmese people. Afterwards enjoy the sunset over the Bagan plains (B,L,D). Sanctuary Ananda (Deluxe Suite Bagan Deck) Day 5: Cruising the Ayeyarwady River. Rise early for an optional hot air balloon trip (November – March, extra charge). This morning visit the temples of Bagan starting at the Ananda Temple. Completed in 1091 AD, it is one of the four great temples in Bagan and one of the most beautiful. A horse-cart will be your mode of transport through the Bagan plains, with several photo stops and a visit to Sulamani pagoda. Later today you travel to Mount Popa, visiting a jaggery workshop along the way. Lunch is at Popa Mountain Resort with spectacular views of Mount Popa which is a popular pilgrimage site with numerous Nat temples and relics. Opportunity to climb up and enjoy the views. Return to the ship and enjoy a candlelit sandbank dinner (B,L,D). Sanctuary Ananda (Deluxe Suite Bagan Deck) Day 6: Bagan. Disembark and visit Manuha and Nanpaya Temples before transferring to the hotel (B,L). Aureum Palace Hotel (Orchid or Jasmine villa)


Young Monks

Day 7: Bagan – Inle Lake. Fly east to Heho and transfer to Inle Lake. The shallow waters of Inle Lake are circled by rolling hills and dotted with small fishing villages. See man-made floating gardens and traditional leg-rowers (B,L). Inle Princess Resort (Lake House) Day 8: Inle Lake. Morning visit to the Fifth Day Market where local hill tribes come to buy and sell their goods. This afternoon see Ikat-style silk weaving and cruise to Indein to explore this typical lakeside village with its original ancient Shan style stupas (B,L). Inle Princess Resort (Lake House) Day 9: Inle Lake. Today is at leisure. This evening enjoy a private dinner in the resort’s acclaimed Wine Cellar (B,D). Inle Princess Resort (Lake House)

U Bein Bridge, Mandalay

Day 10: Inle Lake – Yangon. Transfer to Heho airport for the flight to Yangon. Transfer to your hotel with the rest of the day at leisure. A driver and guide are at your disposal for visits to Scott Market, Sule Pagoda or the National Museum (B,L). Belmond Governor’s Residence (Deluxe Garden View Room) Day 11: Depart Yangon. Transfer to the airport where your journey ends (B). PRICE Twin Share Per Person: From $6,830 Solo Traveller: From $11,225

Traditional parasols 1300 851 800 | abercrombiekent.com.au 47


EXPLORE MORE OF MYANMAR Get more out of your holiday and explore the region in greater depth. Here are some recommendations to complement your visit. Ask your Travel Specialist how best to personalise your journey or visit www.abercrombiekent.com.au to learn more.

Golden Rock at dusk

Ngapali Beach

MON STATE

RAKHINE STATE

Explore the highlights of the Mon State to the east of Yangon around the beautifully scenic Thanlwin River. Its capital Mawlamyaing has a strong colonial history immortalised by Kipling in his famous poem ‘Mandalay’ and you’ll be amongst the first to explore this little visited area where golden temples and charming villages are found in abundance.

For a leisurely break after a touring itinerary, a beach stay on the Andaman Sea is just the ticket. With palm-lined beaches, mountain and sea views you’ll be able to properly unwind in idyllic surrounds. You can explore by land or water with boat trips to outlying islands and coastal mangrove habitats, fishing, bird watching in nearby forests, hiking and biking, visits to local villages, monasteries and handicraft workshops.

A&K RECOMMENDS

‘Mawlamyaing Extension’ from Yangon | 5 Days

A&K RECOMMENDS

‘Ngapali Beach Extension’ from Yangon | 4 Days

Train ride over the Goteik viaduct

SHAN HIGHLANDS The cool air and mountain landscapes of the Shan State reveal an enticing blend of colonial and traditional Burmese culture. In the old British summer capital, Pyin Oo Lwin, there are colonial houses to admire and splendid Botanical Gardens while the unspoiled plateau town of Hsipaw exists as it has for centuries with artisans at work weaving baskets and textiles, fan making and cheroot rolling. Outlying farming villages deliver a fascinating insight to rural Myanmar. A&K RECOMMENDS

‘Pyin Oo Lwin Extension’ from Mandalay | 4 Days

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SANCTUARY ANANDA The Sanctuary Retreats portfolio brings the boutique River Cruising experience to guests with authenticity.

Sanctuary Ananda

Sundeck

Deluxe Suite

MYANMAR | CRUISING THE AYEYARWADY AND CHINDWIN The luxurious all-suite Sanctuary Ananda carries guests in style on voyages of breathtaking beauty and discovery on the mysterious rivers of Myanmar. Cruises travel along the majestic Ayeyarwady River between Bhamo and Yangon visiting temples, pagodas, palaces and monasteries along the way, while journeys on its great tributary, the Chindwin, reveal places rarely seen before. Sanctuary Ananda offers 3, 4 and 7 night ‘Discovery Cruises’ as well as 10 and 11 night ‘Exploration Cruises’ which allow guests more time to explore the Ayeyarwady and Chindwin Rivers. THE CABINS The Cabins Sanctuary Ananda offers 2 suites, 14 deluxe suites, 4 luxury suites and the Aloungpayah suite. All are air-conditioned with either double or twin beds and en suite bathroom with monsoon shower and a large private balcony. The four luxury suites have an additional indoor seating area and can accommodate a third guest. The ultra-luxurious Aloungpayah Suite has a king sized bed, dressing area, a free standing bathtub, and monsoon shower as well as private living and dining areas and superb panoramic views of the river. Contemporary luxuries which are standard in every cabin include iPod docking station and iPad TV connectivity. DAILY ACTIVITIES Daily Activities Days start with complimentary early morning meditation and sunrise yoga on the sundeck. While cruising during the day guests can

relax on a sun lounge or take a dip in the outdoor plunge pool. In the afternoons and evenings, there are lectures and demonstrations of local customs where guests can learn about the culture, history and attractions of Myanmar. All Sanctuary Ananda’s guides are local Burmese experts, enhancing the experience still further, and where possible, guests experience the fun of local transport, such as horsedrawn carts, trishaws and small boats. LUXURY ON BOARD Luxury on Board While using traditional materials such as local fabrics, wood and lacquerware, the ship’s design is one of contemporary luxury. She has one of the highest staff to guest ratios on the river. Other facilities include a sundeck with outdoor pool, restaurant, lounge, the Thambyadine Spa and gym.

FACTS • Launch year: 2014 • Length: 61m • Beam: 11.7m • Draught: 1.2 m • Passengers: 48 • Crew: 32 WHAT’S INCLUDED •All meals during full sailing days with lunch and dinner on day of embarkation and breakfast on day of disembarkation. •Soft drinks and local beer •All sightseeing as stated in set itineraries • Butler service in the Luxury and Owner’s Suites •Full balconies for every suite

1300 851 800 | abercrombiekent.com.au 49


Highlights of Vietnam

City Hall, Ho Chi Minh City

VIETNAM | 12 Days | Hanoi – Halong Bay – Hoi An – Hue – Ho Chi Minh City CHINA Halong Bay

Hanoi

MYANMAR

LAOS THAILAND

GULF OF TONKIN

Hue Danang Hoi An VIETNAM

CAMBODIA Air Road

GULF OF THAILAND

SOUTH CHINA SEA

Ho Chi Minh City

One of Southeast Asia’s hottest destinations, Vietnam has it in spades and this journey includes all the highlights from north to south. The country boasts a long coastline, bustling cities, beaches, mountains, an iconic river, temples and lush countryside as well as several UNESCO World Heritage Sites. Hotels are world class and a junk trip on Halong Bay is not to be missed.

Day 1: Arrive Hanoi. Arrive into the elegant Vietnamese capital and transfer to your iconic hotel. Sofitel Legend Metropole (Grand Luxury Room) Day 2: Hanoi. Your private tour this morning includes Ho Chi Minh’s Mausoleum, the picturesque One Pillar Pagoda and the Temple of Literature, Vietnam’s first university, with its ancient walled gardens. After lunch visit the Museum of Ethnology (B,L). Sofitel Legend Metropole (Grand Luxury Room) Day 3: Design your day Hanoi. A choice of half day activity today. Join a local food blogger on a street food tour. Visit street stalls and markets and sample the local produce. Or trace the origin of Vietnam’s culture and traditions when you visit the ancient village of Duong Lam where many of the houses date back 400 years. Afternoon at leisure (B). Sofitel Legend Metropole (Grand Luxury Room) Day 4: Hanoi – Halong Bay. Drive through rich farmlands to Vietnam’s famous World Heritage Site, Halong Bay. Board your sophisticated floating hotel and cruise through the turquoise waters and dramatic limestone islets (B,L,D). Paradise Peak Cruise (Superior Suite) Day 5: Halong Bay – Hoi An. Return to Hanoi airport for the short flight south to Danang and transfer to the UNESCO World Heritage town of Hoi An (B). Four Seasons Resort The Nam Hai One Bedroom Villa) Day 6: Hoi An. Morning at leisure. Afternoon walking tour of this charming town taking in the 400-year-old Japanese covered bridge and more. Travellers can also visit a local silkworm farm supplying Hoi An’s thriving textile industry (B). Four Seasons Resort The Nam Hai (One Bedroom Villa)

50 India & The Orient

Day 7: Hoi An. Day at leisure (B). Four Seasons Resort The Nam Hai (One Bedroom Villa) Day 8: Hoi An – Hue. A scenic drive north to Hue stopping en route to visit the Cham Museum. After lunch visit the Tomb of Khai Dinh in Hue. Dinner tonight is in a beautiful garden house restaurant (B,L,D). La Residence Hotel & Spa (Colonial Suite) Day 9: Hue. A morning guided tour of the Imperial Citadel and the tomb of the former emperor Minh Mang in a tranquil garden setting. Afternoon boat cruise on the Perfume River to Thien Mu pagoda and on to the lively Dong Ba Market for a captivating look at daily life in Hue (B,L). La Residence Hotel & Spa (Colonial Suite) Day 10: Hue – Ho Chi Minh City. Fly south to Ho Chi Minh City and transfer to hotel. This afternoon visit Cholon, the city’s Chinatown district, Thien Hau Pagoda, lively Binh Tay Market and the Fito Museum, the first traditional museum in Vietnam (B). Park Hyatt Saigon (Park Room Garden View) Day 11: Design Your Day Ho Chi Minh City. Plot your own course today. Visit the Cu Chi Tunnels with a veteran guide. Or a full day trip into the picturesque Mekong Delta with a boat trip through the canals and a bike ride to villages with riverside lunch (B). Park Hyatt Saigon (Park Room Garden View) Day 12: Depart Ho Chi Minh City. Transfer airport for onward flight (B). PRICE Twin Share Per Person: From $7,235 Solo Traveller: From $12,725


A Family Adventure

Children at play, Mekong Delta

VIETNAM | 12 Days | Hanoi – Halong Bay – Hoi An – Mekong Delta – Ho Chi Minh City CHINA MYANMAR

Hanoi LAOS

Halong Bay GULF OF TONKIN

THAILAND

Danang Hoi An VIETNAM

CAMBODIA GULF OF THAILAND Air Road

Ho Chi Minh City Mekong Delta SOUTH CHINA SEA

The warm and friendly Vietnamese, the slow pace, excellent lodgings and the myriad cultural attractions make Vietnam an ideal place to travel with family. This two week journey gives exciting opportunities to explore local markets, try new foods, sail on a traditional junk, participate in local cultural activities and relax on the beach. Hotels have been hand-picked to suit discerning families with facilities to keep both adult and child entertained.

Day 1: Arrive Hanoi. Arrival transfer to the hotel. Sofitel Legend Metropole (Premium Room) Day 2: Hanoi. Visit the Hang Be market with a local chef to source the fresh produce for your morning cooking class with lunch included. This afternoon visit the Temple of Literature and the Ethnology Museum. Finish the day with some of Hanoi’s best homemade ice cream (B,L). Sofitel Legend Metropole (Premium Room) Days 3-4: Hanoi - Halong Bay. Drive to Halong Bay passing through the Red River Delta en route. Arrive at the pier and board your private junk for the Halong Bay cruise. Spend two days cruising the turquoise waters and dramatic limestone islets of this famous natural wonder and World Heritage Site, visiting floating villages, caves, kayaking and swimming (B,L,D). Paradise Luxury Cruise (Deluxe Balcony Cabin) Day 5: Halong Bay - Danang - Hoi An. Disembark and transfer to Hanoi airport stopping at Yen Duc for a village visit and lunch along the way. Fly south to Danang and transfer to your hotel (B,L). Boutique Hoi An Resort (Beach Villa) Day 6: Hoi An. A morning at leisure. In the afternoon a cyclo ride around the ancient town centre to visit former merchants’ houses, the 400 year-old Japanese Bridge and the colourful market. Last stop a lantern making class (B). Boutique Hoi An Resort (Beach Villa) Day 7: Hoi An. Continue exploring Hoi An. Included is a bike trip out to a local farm with the chance to participate in gardening activities before helping to prepare lunch. After lunch return to the hotel for an afternoon at leisure (B,L). Boutique Hoi An Resort (Beach Villa)

Day 8: Hoi Ain - Danang - Ho Chi Minh City. Fly from Danang to Ho Chi Minh City. On arrival visit a traditional medicine museum, Cholon, the city’s Chinatown district, Notre Dame Cathedral and the old Post Office. Afternoon at leisure (B). Sofitel Saigon Plaza (Luxury Room) Day 9: Ho Chi Minh City. This morning visit the Cu Chi Tunnels, an extensive network dug by the Viet Cong and North Vietnamese forces during the war. Return to Ho Chi Minh City and the afternoon is at leisure (B). Sofitel Saigon Plaza (Luxury Room) Day 10: Ho Chi Minh City - Mekong Delta. Drive into the heart of the Mekong Delta for an experience of rural Vietnam. Board a private sampan for a trip through the canals and small tributaries to local villages. Taste tropical fruits and chat with a farmer before visiting the rice noodle factory and a bike tour. After lunch stop at a floating fishing village and enjoy a cooking demonstration and dinner on board (B,L,D). Private charter Day 11: Mekong Delta - Ho Chi Minh City. After breakfast visit the lively floating markets of Cai Be and then return to Ho Chi Minh City (B). Sofitel Saigon Plaza (Luxury Room) Day 12: Depart Ho Chi Minh City. Transfer to the airport for departure flight (B). PRICE Adult Twin Share Per Person: From $5,895 Child (0-12yrs) Per Person: From $3,835

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Journey on the Mekong

Angkor Wat, Cambodia

VIETNAM & CAMBODIA | 14 Days | Ho Chi Minh City – Mekong River – Siem Reap Day 1: Arrive Ho Chi Minh City. Arrive into Ho Chi Minh City and transfer to your hotel. Park Hyatt Saigon (Park Room)

CAMBODIA Siem Reap Tonle Sap Lake VIETNAM Chhnok Tru Kampong Chhnang Phnom Penh Vinh Xuong Ho Chi Minh City Chau Doc My Tho GULF Cai Be OF

THAILAND Cruise Road

SOUTH CHINA SEA

This exciting journey incorporates a fascinating cruise on the mighty Mekong River aboard the luxury vessel Aqua Mekong. Starting in southern Vietnam taking in the colonial chic of Saigon, the expedition travels north to the Tonle Sap River uncovering the region’s fascinating history, meeting Khmer farmers, Buddhist monks and entrepreneurial friends in Vietnamese wet markets along the way. The adventure culminates with the legendary Angkorian highlights of Siem Reap. During the low water season (DecemberJune), the cruise includes much more time on the Cambodia stretch of the Mekong and along the Tonle Sap River

52 India & The Orient

M e ko n g

THAILAND

Day 2: Ho Chi Minh City. Morning private city tour to include the History Museum, Notre Dame Cathedral and the Central Post office. After lunch visit Cholon, the city’s Chinatown district followed by the lively Binh Tay Market and Thien Hau Pagoda (B,L). Park Hyatt Saigon (Park Room) Day 3: Ho Chi Minh City – My Tho. Private transfer to My Tho in the Mekong Delta (approx. 2 hours) where Aqua Mekong awaits. Afternoon excursion by sampan to a floating market. Further exploration on foot or by bike (B,L,D). Aqua Mekong (Second Deck Suite) Day 4: Mekong River. Begin the day at Binh Thanh mat weaving village or a walking tour around sleepy Sa Dec perusing the market and the house of French writer Marguerite Duras’ legendary lover, Mr Huynh Thuy Le. This afternoon visit a traditional home in the Mekong Delta to taste local tropical fruits and enjoy a folk song and dance performance (B,L,D). Aqua Mekong (Second Deck Suite) Day 5: Mekong River. Travel by skiff to Chau Doc floating market. Then Long Son Pagoda to meet resident monks. Return via the morning market. Afternoon spent on board for border crossing to Cambodia (B,L,D). Aqua Mekong (Second Deck Suite) Day 6: Mekong River. Further explorations by bike before visiting the remote village of Preah Prosop (B,L,D). Aqua Mekong (Second Deck Suite) Day 7: Tonle Sap River – Phnom Penh. Arrive into Phnom Penh and take a tuk-tuk ride to the Royal Palace and its Silver Pagoda plus the National Museum of Cambodia. Evening Cambodian dance performance (B,L,D). Aqua Mekong (Second Deck Suite)

Day 8: Tonle Sap River. Morning visit to silver and coppersmith workshops. This afternoon visit Kampong Chhnang, the ‘Port of Pottery’ (B,L,D). Aqua Mekong (Second Deck Suite) Day 9: Tonle Sap River. Explore remote communities and floating villages around Tonle Sap Lake (B,L,D). Aqua Mekong (Second Deck Suite) Day 10: Tonle Sap River – Siem Reap. Morning visit to a bird reserve before disembarkation. Transfer to your hotel with rest of the day at leisure (B). Raffles Grand Hotel d’Angkor (Landmark Room) Day 11: Siem Reap. Early risers may like to watch sunrise over Angkor Wat. Afterwards there’s a visit to the unique jungle temple of Ta Prohm. Afternoon at leisure (B). Raffles Grand Hotel d’Angkor (Landmark Room) Day 12: Siem Reap. A morning visit to the fortified city of Angkor Thom, the Bayon Temple, Elephant Terrace and the Terrace of the Leper King. Later visit the nearby Baphuon temple. Afternoon at leisure (B). Raffles Grand Hotel d’Angkor (Landmark Room) Day 13: Siem Reap. Day at leisure (B). Raffles Grand Hotel d’Angkor (Landmark Room) Day 14: Depart Siem Reap. Transfer to the airport for your departure flight (B). PRICE Twin Share Per Person: From $15,795 Solo Traveller: From $21,230


AQUA MEKONG The Aqua Expeditions portfolio takes boutique adventure cruising to a new level.

Suite

Southeast Asian culinary delights

Aqua Mekong

VIETNAM & CAMBODIA | CRUISING THE MEKONG AND TONLE SAP RIVERS The Aqua Mekong takes guests on a journey between Vietnam and Cambodia along the mighty Mekong River. As well as a striking cultural diversity the waterway also presents remarkable landscapes. The journey takes in flooded emerald forests and bamboo stilt villages, incredible and rare birdlife, awe-inspiring wing tipped pagodas and remote Buddhist monasteries. With a 1:1 staff to guest ratio, nothing is left to chance. Three, four and seven night cruises operate throughout most of the year with itinerary variations depending on water levels. LUXURY ON BOARD

DAILY ACTIVITIES

Embodying the aesthetics of a sophisticated five star hotel, Aqua Mekong has been designed using local sustainable materials and artisanal touches to create welcoming spaces for no more than 40 guests. The convivial lounge and bar is a great meeting place where nightly briefings take place on the coming day’s activities, cultural performances are held and regular lectures delivered. Dining is a highlight of the Aqua Mekong experience with renowned Australian chef David Thompson designing the menus. Meals incorporate elements of both Khmer and Vietnamese cuisine and use diverse culinary traditions from the local river cultures and fresh, locally sustainable ingredients. A good choice of Australian and French house wines is offered. Other facilities on board include a boutique, small gym, outdoor plunge pool, sun lounges, a media room, library and small spa.

Professionally trained river guides lead guests on daily expeditions aboard comfortable skiffs deep into the Mekong’s tributaries and on foot among Khmer pottery villages, remote mountain monasteries and among the cultural treasures of Phnom Penh. The English-speaking, professionally trained experts grew up along the Mekong River, and know its Buddhist temples, Hindu ruins, Catholic churches and elusive wildlife as well as many of the Vietnamese and Cambodian people they will introduce guests to en route. THE CABINS The 20 cabins are generous in size (30 sq m) with floor to ceiling panoramic windows and airconditioning. Eight have balconies with table for two. En suite bathrooms feature large walk in rainforest showers, twin vanity, hairdryer and natural bath amenities. Four sets of interconnecting suites are suitable for families.

FACTS • Launch year: 2014 • Length: 62.4m • Beam: 11.5m • Draught: 1.5m • Cabins: 20 • Crew: 40 WHAT’S INCLUDED • All meals while on board • Beverages including non-alcoholic, selected house wine and beer • All shore excursions • Onboard lectures and entertainment • All shore excursions • Internet (connectivity variable) 1300 851 800 | abercrombiekent.com.au 53


EXPLORE MORE OF VIETNAM Get more out of your holiday and explore the region in greater depth. Here are some recommendations to complement your visit. Ask your Travel Specialist how best to personalise your journey or visit www.abercrombiekent.com.au to learn more.

Tea plantations

Six Senses Resort Con Dao

CENTRAL HIGHLANDS

CON DAO ISLANDS

Adventurous travellers wanting to get off the beaten track will relish a visit to Vietnam’s Central Highlands. In addition to thundering waterfalls, mistshrouded mountains and coffee and tea plantations there are many different ethnic minority villages, huge longhouses and some colourful markets which you’ll visit. A coffee experience is one of the highlights. Travel in the area can be challenging with road conditions and accommodation options variable.

Sixteen mountainous islands and inlets of pristine natural beauty make up Con Dao, a national park with several endangered species of marine and terrestrial life. Deserted beaches are surrounded by forested hills and azure waters with coral reefs that are home to some 1,300 marine species including rare dugongs and sea turtles. Hiking through forests and mangroves looking for rare monkeys and black squirrels is a highlight while there are many historic monuments to visit.

A&K RECOMMENDS

‘Central Highlands Adventure’ from Pleiku | 6 Days

A&K RECOMMENDS

Stay at ‘Six Senses Resort Con Dao’ from Ho Chi Minh City | 4 Days

Amanoi

VINH HY BAY Spectacularly remote, the white sand beaches of Vinh Hy Bay on the southeast coast of Vietnam are situated within a marine reserve which adjoins the mountainous Nui Chua National Park and is home to a large variety of sea corals, tropical fish species, and hawksbill and green sea turtles. Snorkelling and diving are popular activities while kayaking, sailing and visits to local fishing villages are also available. Guided trips within the national park reveal a number of different ecosystems and diverse flora and fauna. A&K RECOMMENDS

Stay at ‘Amanoi’ | 4 Days

54 India & The Orient


Cambodia Discovery

Song Saa Private Island

CAMBODIA | 10 Days | Phnom Penh – Siem Reap – Song Saa Private Island – Phnom Penh Day 1: Arrive Phnom Penh. Arrive into the Cambodian capital where you are met and transferred to the hotel. Raffles Hotel Le Royal (Landmark Garden View Room)

THAILAND CAMBODIA Siem Reap Tonle Sap Lake VIETNAM Phnom Penh Song Sea Private Island GULF OF THAILAND Air Road Boat

Sihanoukville SOUTH CHINA SEA

This journey takes in the major highlights of Cambodia from the bustling French-era capital Phnom Penh to the astonishing temple complex of Angkor and Song Saa Private Island in the warm sapphire waters of the Gulf of Thailand. We’ve added in some more unusual sights too such as the former royal capital of Oudong and the bijou Neak Pean temple. Finish your stay in the stylish surrounds of your own overwater villa where every luxury awaits.

Day 2: Phnom Penh. Start the day with a private tour including the Royal Palace, Silver Pagoda and the National Museum. This afternoon, take a journey into the dark history of the Khmer Rouge period, visiting Tuol Sleng Genocide Museum before stopping at a local market (B). Raffles Hotel Le Royal (Landmark Garden View Room) Day 3: Phnom Penh. This morning you are driven to Oudong, the old royal capital, where the main attraction is the sacred hill of Phnom Udong which has several stupas and excellent views of the surrounding countryside. Afterwards wander through a traditional weaving village before returning to Phnom Penh (B,L). Raffles Hotel Le Royal (Landmark Garden View Room) Day 4: Phnom Penh – Siem Reap. Transfer to the airport for the flight north to Siem Reap, your base for exploring the temples of Angkor. Transfer to the hotel with the rest of the day at leisure (B). Amansara (Suite) Day 5: Siem Reap. Head out from the hotel by tuk tuk to visit the fortified 10th century city of Angkor Thom. Continue to the Bayon Temple, the Elephant Terrace and the beautiful jungle temple of Ta Prohm. Afterwards visit one of the smaller and most unusual monuments, Neak Pean, a Buddhist temple in the middle of an artificial island in a lake. Last stop is the 12th century temple of Preah Khan (B). Amansara (Suite)

Day 6: Siem Reap. Rise early this morning to see Angkor Wat at sunrise and explore it with your guide. Return to the hotel for breakfast and later on visit the lovely pink sandstone temple of Banteay Srei. This afternoon head to Tonle Sap, southeast Asia’s largest freshwater lake, where you will visit one of the floating villages that depend on the natural ecosystem to exist (B). Amansara (Suite) Day 7: Siem Reap – Song Saa Private Island. Transfer to the airport for the flight south to Sihanoukville where you are met and transferred to the pier for the 40-minute speed boat to Song Saa Island. Remainder of the day to enjoy the resort and its facilities (B,D). Song Saa Private Island (Jungle Villa) Days 8-9: Song Saa Private Island. The next two days are at leisure with a choice of activities including snorkelling, kayaking, spa treatments and more (B,L,D). Song Saa Private Island (Jungle Villa) Day 10: Song Saa Private Island – Phnom Penh. Afternoon return boat trip to Sihanoukville where you are transferred to Phnom Penh airport for your onward flight (B,L). PRICE Twin Share Per Person: From $9,310 Solo Traveller: From $17,575

AKP supported project: Sam’s Brothers Clean Water Project 1300 851 800 | abercrombiekent.com.au 55


Laos in Depth

Luang Prabang, Laos

LAOS | 8 Days | Luang Prabang – Vientiane – Champasak - Pakse VIETNAM Luang Prabang

LAOS

GULF OF TONKIN

Vientiane

THAILAND Pakse Champasak Air Road

Khong Island

GULF OF The smallTHAILAND mountainous country of Laos is

known as the land of a million elephants. It is blessed with the sleepy charm of Old Asia and is an enchanting delight. This delightful journey highlights the major attractions of the capital, Vientiane, and World Heritage listed Luang Prabang as well as the unspoiled Champasak province in the southwest of the country. Visit minority villages on the Mekong, see impressive Khmer ruins and the vast riverscapes of the 4000 Islands region and there are opportunities to meditate with monks and visit colourful markets.

56 India & The Orient

Day 1: Arrive Luang Prabang. Arrival transfer to the hotel. Belmond La Résidence Phou Vao (Mountain View Junior Suite) Day 2: Luang Prabang. This morning visit the Royal Palace Museum and continue to the country’s most historic and enchanting temple Wat Xiengthong, before boarding a private boat for a picturesque cruise on the Mekong River to the mysterious caves of Pak Ou which are crammed with thousands of Buddha statues. Return to Luang Prabang by boat, stopping at weaving and textile villages. Later this afternoon there is the option to climb Mount Phousi for spectacular views over the city and river (B). Belmond La Résidence Phou Vao (Mountain View Junior Suite) Day 3: Design your Day Luang Prabang. A choice today. Visit the local Phosi Market where the locals shop then Ock Pop Tock, a silk weaving centre, for an introduction to the weaving process. Then a drive out of the town to visit Khmu, Hmong and Lao Loum villages, representing the main ethnic groups of Laos, before a picnic lunch at the Kuang Si Waterfalls. Or there’s optional early morning alms giving to the daily procession of monks, time to explore a local market before visiting an organic farm and the Kuang Si Waterfalls (B,L). Belmond La Résidence Phou Vao (Mountain View Junior Suite) Day 4: Luang Prabang – Vientiane. Fly to Vientiane with a tour on arrival to the oldest wat in Vientiane, Wat Sisaket, and the museum of arts and antiques. Pass by the imposing Patuxai Monument and continue to That Luang, the city’s most important religious building (B). Green Park Hotel (Executive Suite)

Day 5: Vientiane – Champasak. Transfer for the flight to Pakse where you are met and transferred east to the Bolaven Plateau high above the Mekong Valley. Visit tea and coffee plantations and an impressive twin chute waterfall (B). The River Resort (Riverfront Villa) Day 6: Champasak. This morning visit Vat Phou, an ancient Khmer religious complex dating back to the 5th century. This dramatically sited temple offers magnificent views and is one of the highlights of any trip to Laos (B). The River Resort (Riverfront Villa) Day 7: Champasak. Drive south to board a local boat for a tour to the 4000 Islands where the Mekong is over 14km wide and characterised by thousands of islands, cascades and rapids. This afternoon explore Don Khone island by bike, admiring the colonial architecture and Liphi Waterfall. Visit the Khone Phapheng waterfalls before returning to Champasak (B). The River Resort (Riverfront Villa) Day 8: Champasak – Pakse. Transfer to Pakse Airport for onward flight (B). PRICE Twin Share Per Person: From $4,995 Solo Traveller: From $8,620


EXPLORE MORE OF SOUTHEAST ASIA Get more out of your holiday and explore the region in greater depth. Here are some recommendations to complement your visit. Ask your Travel Specialist how best to personalise your journey or visit www.abercrombiekent.com.au to learn more.

Soneva Kiri Resort & Residences

KOH KOOD ISLAND Koh Kood is Thailand as it once was. Untamed jungle, pristine beaches and fishermen with their dailycatch. This is ancient Siam, at peace with itself, and just one hour’s flight from Bangkok by private plane. Soneva Kiri offers an unrivalled combination of luxury, environmentally friendly design and unforgettable, authentic Thai experiences with 36 of the largest resort villas in the world. Located on the idyllic beach or forested slopes, all have stunning infinity pools, impossibly chic furnishings, personal electric buggies and impeccable service courtesy of Mr./Ms. Friday private butlers. Highlights include the open air Cinema Paradiso, Benz’ mangrove restaurant, the Chocolate and Ice cream parlour, the Observatory, The Den and the spectacular Treetop Dining Pod. Barefoot Intelligent Luxury at its best. No news, no shoes, Thai style. A&K RECOMMENDS

Stay at Soneva Kiri Resort & Residences

Wat Ming Muang, Chiang Rai

NORTHERN THAILAND The north of Thailand presents a wildly different picture of the country. It’s a land of lush forested mountains, winding rivers, tea plantations and rice paddies. The region’s major city Chiang Mai is a cultural centre with temples, markets and a rich craft tradition plus a range of outdoor adventures nearby. Further north the Golden Triangle is where Thailand, Laos and Burma all meet in a scenery of stunning mountains, fast-flowing rivers and hill tribe villages. A&K RECOMMENDS

‘Northen Thailand’ from Chiang Mai | 8 Days

1300 851 800 | abercrombiekent.com.au 57


Japan Ancient & Modern

Fushimi Inari shrine, Kyoto

JAPAN | 10 Days | Tokyo – Hakone – Kyoto - Osaka

SEA OF JAPAN

Day 1: Arrive Tokyo. Arrive into the Japanese capital and transfer privately to the hotel. Conrad Tokyo (City view Room) JAPAN

Takayama Japan Alps Kanazawa Tokyo Hakone Kyoto Hiroshima Mt. Osaka Naoshima Fuji Island Ise-Shima PACIFIC Peninsula Rail OCEAN Road

A country of contrasts, Japan is steeped in time-honoured tradition yet home to a thriving hi-tech industry in its urban metropolises. It boasts extraordinary natural beauty from the pristine landscapes and hot springs in the Mt Fuji area to the waterfalls and cedars of the Nikko National Park. Its historic and cultural attractions are many with ancient shrines, temples and the geisha tradition complementing dazzling shop fronts, neon-lit skyscrapers and minimalist eateries. This journey takes in all the country’s most important attractions.

58 India & The Orient

Day 2: Tokyo. Travel with your guide like a local on Tokyo’s super-efficient rail system. Touring starts at Asakusa, part of Tokyo’s old town, where the Sensoji Temple is the main attraction. Continue to the Edo Tokyo museum and then a cruise down the Sumida River to see Tokyo from a different angle. This afternoon continue to the Imperial Palace and the Meiji shrine with time to visit the shops and galleries of Omotesando, commonly referred to as Tokyo’s ChampsElysées (B). Conrad Tokyo (City view Room) Day 3: Tokyo – Nikko National Park – Tokyo. Venture out of the city to the mountainous Nikko National Park where there is a fine collection of World Heritage listed gilded shrines and temples set amidst lush woodland. Look out for the lavishly decorated Toshogu Shrine and visit scenic Lake Chuzenji in the mountains. On returning to Tokyo stop at a Bonsai Village to understand a little of the traditional art of miniaturising trees (B). Conrad Tokyo (City view Room) Day 4: Tokyo – Kamakura – Hakone. Leave the bustle of Tokyo behind travelling to Hakone via Kamakura, the 12th century capital, famous for its Buddhist temples and Shinto shrines, walking trails and hot springs. After visiting the main temples continue on to the Fuji Hakone National Park, where you will stay in one of Japan’s top ryokan. This evening, dine on a sumptuous kaiseki multi course meal and enjoy an onsen (hot spring bath) before retiring (B,D). Gora Kadan (Japanese Room)

Day 5: Hakone. Enjoy marvellous views of Mt. Fuji and a day of outdoor activities. There is a ropeway ride at Mt. Komagatake, a cruise on Lake Achi, visits to the Owakudani crater and volcanic hot water springs and the Samurai Art Museum (B,D). Gora Kadan (Japanese Room) Day 6: Hakone – Kyoto. A morning bullet train ride to Kyoto, Japan’s cultural capital, with the afternoon at leisure (B). The Ritz-Carlton Kyoto (Deluxe Room) Day 7: Kyoto. Today’s half day sightseeing includes the atmospheric Higashiyama district whose lanes lead to the Kiyomizu Temple and are filled with quaint shops selling traditional souvenirs. From the temple enjoy breathtaking views of the city before walking the forested Philosophers’ path between the temples and a private tea ceremony (B). The Ritz-Carlton Kyoto (Deluxe Room) Day 8: Kyoto. Visit the ornamental Nijo Castle including the gardens and Golden Pavilion, one of Kyoto’s most famous temples. Continue to Ryoan-ji, the famous zen rock garden temple. After lunch, visit the Sanjusangendo, famous for its 1,000 kanon statues, and the Nishiki Food market (B). The RitzCarlton Kyoto (Deluxe Room) Day 9: Kyoto. A full day at leisure (B). The RitzCarlton Kyoto (Deluxe Room) Day 10: Depart Kyoto. Transfer to Osaka Airport where your journey ends (B). PRICE Twin Share Per Person: From $17,335 Solo Traveller: From $31,255


EXPLORE MORE OF JAPAN Get more out of your holiday and explore the region in greater depth. Here are some recommendations to complement your visit. Ask your Travel Specialist how best to personalise your journey or visit www.abercrombiekent.com.au to learn more.

Giant torii Gate

Shirakawa-go

HIROSHIMA & SURROUNDS

CENTRAL JAPAN

Better known for its tragic past, a visit to Hiroshima is a reminder of the catastrophic moment in 1945 when the city was hit by the world’s first atomic bomb. Today the city prospers and many visitors are drawn to the city to pay their respects. The small island of Miyajima is also worth visiting. It is famous for its giant torii gate, one of Japan’s most iconic sights, which at high tide seems to float on the water.

Get off the beaten path and visit some of Japan’s most fascinating and little known towns. Kanazawa on the north coast of Honshu Island is fast emerging as the country’s new art and culture capital. It also boasts beautifully preserved samurai and geisha districts, attractive temples, a wealth of museums and a wonderful market. Inland, in the northern alps, the well preserved old town of Takayama with its narrow lanes, quaint wooden houses, galleries and craft shops is a step back in time.

A&K RECOMMENDS

A&K RECOMMENDS

‘Hiroshima Extension’ from Kyoto | 3 Days

‘Art & Culture of Central Japan’ from Kyoto | 6 Days

Amanemu

Iconic installation on Naoshima Island

ISE-SHIMA PENINSULA

NAOSHIMA ISLAND

Set on Japan’s east coast, the Ise-Shima Peninsula is famous for its forested landscapes and Mediterranean looking coastlines. In its waters, pearl cultivation is an important activity and the area is also famous for producing some of the freshest sea food in the country. While there are holy Shinto shrines and World Heritage listed pilgrimage trails the region’s natural beauty takes centre stage.

The tiny island of Naoshima in the Seto Inland Sea of southern Japan is world famous for its remarkable art installations and cutting edge architecture. The island showcases the best up-and-coming Japanese artists alongside international talent including works by Hockney, Pollock, Warhol, Tadao Ando, James Turrell and more. Accommodation is also unique at the 65 room Benesse House Museum, a hotel within a contemporary art museum.

A&K RECOMMENDS

Stay at Amanemu

A&K RECOMMENDS

‘Naoshima Island Extension’ from Kyoto | 4 Days

1300 851 800 | abercrombiekent.com.au 59


HOSTED SMALL GROUP JOURNEYS In addition to the private journeys featured in this brochure, A&K also offers a range of Hosted Small Group Journeys around the globe. Below is a selection of what we offer in the region. For more details visit our website or request a copy of our Hosted Small Group Journeys brochure.

CHINA | 10 Days | The Ancient Silk Road with Sujata Raman The ancient Silk Road was a network of overland trade routes that linked China with the Mediterranean. For a thousand years or so, merchants made the journey with caravans of camels loaded with rubies, jade, metals, amber, musk and of course silk. From Beijing our adventure starts in earnest in Dunhuang, the last stop for caravans to rest and replenish before facing the inhospitable desert beyond. We traverse this vast hinterland of Asia, the rugged and desolate landscapes and once-flourishing oasis cities and trading outposts. Visit sites important to both the Buddhist and Uighur culture and explore the cities of Urumqi, Turfan and Kashgar - names that have captured the imagination for centuries. DEPARTURE DATE: 3 Sep 2017. PRICE Twin Share Per Person: Single Supplement:

$10,995 $2,495

SPECIAL OFFER: Combine this journey with ‘Ancient Trade Routes of Central Asia’ 16 September 2017 departure to save $1,000 per person.

JAPAN | 15 Days | Festivals & Culture with Ikuko Ishii Both spring and autumn in Japan are glorious times to visit when the landscapes are awash with colour from the pink and red cherry blossoms of spring or the foliage of autumn. You’ll experience some of the country’s most fascinating customs, walk the Philosopher’s Path, attend a traditional festival in Takayama, visit stunning gardens, ancient samurai villas and important Shinto shrines. DEPARTURE DATE: 3 Apr, 28 Sep 2017 PRICE Twin Share Per Person: Single Supplement:

60 India & The Orient

MONGOLIA | 12 Days | Mongolia’s Golden Eagle Festival with Palani Mohan Mongolia is vast, remote and strikingly beautiful. Nomads still eke out a living on the steppe as they have for centuries passing down from generation to generation age-old practices of horsemanship, herding and hunting. Your host, an awardwinning freelance photographer and published author has photographed and documented in detail the Golden Eagle hunters and is both an invaluable cultural attaché as well as expert photographic instructor throughout your journey. DEPARTURE DATE: 5 Oct 2017.

$16,695 $3,995

PRICE Twin Share Per Person: Single Supplement:

$12,995 $2,995


UZBEKISTAN & TURKMENISTAN | 15 Days | Ancient Trade Routes of Central Asia The mountains and deserts of Central Asia are the backdrop for this extraordinary adventure to the heart of the ancient Silk Road. This is one of the world’s most remote and untouched areas and during the Middle Ages was the epicentre of a powerful empire. On this journey you’ll explore Uzbekistan and Turkmenistan, two countries steeped in antiquity with a lasting legacy from the warriors and emperors who made their mark. Visit some of the oldest cities in the world such as the legendary Samarkand, Bukhara and Khiva. Each one boasts a glorious architectural legacy that is simply dazzling. DEPARTURE DATES: 6 May; 16 Sep; 7 Oct 2017. PRICE Twin Share Per Person: Single Supplement:

$11,995 $2,495

SPECIAL OFFER: Combine this journey with ‘The Ancient Silk Road’ 3 September 2017 departure to save $1,000 per person.

CHINA & TIBET | 10 Days | China, the Yangzi & Tibet’s Horse Racing Festival with Michael Yi

SOUTHEAST ASIA | 9 Days | Gourmet Traveller Siem Reap to Saigon by A&K with Christine Manfield

This innovative journey reveals the heart and soul of China and Tibet. Traverse magnificent landscapes and learn about the region’s fascinating history and culture from expert local guides. Visit remarkable cities and astounding archaeological sites, and marvel at the exquisite treasures of the Ming, Han and Tang dynasties. The Qinghai Yushu Horseracing Festival is an unforgettable cultural experience where Tibetans celebrate their equestrian skills of horse racing, shooting and archery.

Join acclaimed chef and author Christine Manfield when you board the intimate luxury vessel, Aqua Mekong, for a week long cruise. Special meals on board will highlight the many influences and traditions which have made the region’s food so bountiful and flavoursome.

DEPARTURE DATE: 17 Jul 2017.

PRICE Twin Share Per Person: Single Supplement:

PRICE Twin Share Per Person: Single Supplement:

$15,495 $3,895

DEPARTURE DATE: 12 Oct 2017.

$14,295 $9,925

SPECIAL OFFER: Book international flights with A&K for this itinerary and receive $500pp off your airfare. 1300 851 800 | abercrombiekent.com.au 61


ORIENT HOTELS A Selection of A&K’s Favourites

62

AMANPURI

AMANSARA

Thailand - Phuket

Cambodia – Siem Reap

Amanpuri (place of peace) was built in 1987 and became Aman’s flagship property. Reflecting the style and elegance of Thai culture, the resort’s graceful pavilions and villa homes are situated in a coconut plantation on a headland overlooking the Andaman Sea. Elevated walkways connect pavilions to the resort’s private white sand beach and facilities, including the first Aman Spa. With a fleet of luxury cruisers, Amanpuri offers the opportunity to explore the Andaman Sea.

Amansara, the former guesthouse of King Sihanouk, is situated on the edge of Siem Reap just 10 minutes from the entrance to the Angkor UNESCO World Heritage Site. Set in a garden compound, the 24-suite luxury Angkor Wat resort has the ambience of a private home and is the ideal base for travellers seeking to explore Khmer culture and the ruins of Angkor. A variety of Cambodia temple excursions and cultural walks is available as part of the guest experience.

AMANTAKA

AMANFAYUN

Laos – Luang Prabang

China - Hangzhou

Set on a large garden estate, Amantaka is housed in graceful French colonial buildings in the UNESCO protected town of Luang Prabang. Airy and elegant throughout, the décor and furnishings reflect the town’s French colonial history. Situated just south of Phousi Hill, the resort is within strolling distance of the boutiques, bakeries and restaurants lining the town’s main street. The fabled night market, the picturesque banks of the Mekong River and the former Royal Palace are also nearby.

In the spirit of a traditional Chinese village, Amanfayun is a place to explore – a place of stone pathways leading to shaded courtyards, quaint restaurants and peaceful abodes. Situated on 14 hectares to the west of West Lake, a UNESCO World Heritage Site on the outskirts of Hangzhou, the resort is comprised of 47 dwellings surrounded by tea fields. Amanfayun is the ideal location from which to explore ancient Buddhist temples, botanical gardens and Hangzhou’s famous silk and shopping streets.

India & The Orient


AMAN SUMMER PALACE

AMANDAYAN

China - Beijing

China - Lijiang

Just steps from the East Gate of the Summer Palace grounds lies Aman Summer Palace – the ideal location from which to discover Beijing. Housed in a series of pavilions, the resort is only 15km from the Forbidden City. A serene retreat, the property provides easy access to such cultural landmarks as the Great Wall, The Temple of Heaven and the hutongs, as well as Beijing’s restaurants, art galleries and other contemporary delights.

Amandayan is located in the fabled city of Lijiang in China’s Yunnan Province. Set on a hillside above the UNESCO-protected Old Town, the property draws its name from the Sanskrit-derived word for ‘peace’ and ‘dayan’, the historic name for Lijiang. Designed in the traditional architectural style of the Nakhi – the region’s indigenous people – Amandayan is housed in a series of dwellings, arranged around peaceful courtyards. Amandayan is an ideal base from which to explore the town and the region’s spectacular natural attractions.

AMANEMU

AMAN TOKYO

Japan - Shima

Japan - Tokyo

Set in a national park on the shores of Ago Bay, Amanemu embraces the Ancient Japanese tradition of onsen (mineral hot springs) and the culinary traditions of this gourmet region. The resort’s name is drawn from the Sanskrit-derived word for ‘peace’ and nemu, Japanese for ‘sharing joy’. Amanemu’s 24 suites and four two-bedroom villas are positioned on a hillside offering garden views or panoramic vistas of Ago Bay, its picturesque islets and drifting pearl rafts.

Located in the prestigious financial district of Otemachi, Aman Tokyo presents 84 rooms and suites each with unique layouts and panoramic city views. A peaceful inner garden, and a serene Aman Spa and swimming pool complete the elevated sanctuary. Occupying the top six floors of the Otemachi Tower, the hotel offers scenic views of the Imperial Palace Gardens and surrounding landmarks, as well as easy access to all points of interest in the city including the renowned Ginza shopping district.

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1. Definitions “A&K” means Abercrombie & Kent (Australia) Pty Ltd ACN 005 422 999. “ACL” means the Australian Consumer Law Schedule to the Competition and Consumer Act. “Conditions” means these Terms and Conditions. “Contract” means any agreement for the provision of Travel Arrangements or Services by A&K to the Customer; “Customer” means a person, jointly or severally if more than one, acquiring Travel Arrangements and Services from A&K. “Departure Date” means the date scheduled for the Customer to depart at the start of the Travel Arrangements. “GST” has the definition given in A New Tax System (Goods and Services Tax) Act 1999 (“Act”) or any amending legislation, and includes any similar value-added or consumption tax. “Material Alteration” means a material change to the Travel Arrangements as determined at A&K’s sole discretion. “Products” means individual components of Travel Arrangements, such as accommodation, meals, transport, cruises and tours. “Services” means the booking and payment services provided by A&K in relation to Travel Arrangements. “Suppliers” means the third parties that are responsible for providing the individual Products. “Tax Invoice” means a tax invoice which complies with the definition contained in section 29 – 70 of the Act or any amending legislation. “Travel Arrangements” means the travel arrangements made by A&K including all Products. 2. Basis of Contract 2.1 The Conditions apply exclusively to every contract for Services by A&K to the Customer and cannot be varied or supplanted by any other condition unless expressly accepted in writing by A&K. 2.2 Acceptance: Payment of a deposit indicates the Customer’s acceptance of the Conditions. 2.3 Different Products may have specific terms and conditions, deposit requirements and cancellation charges applicable to the Product. These will be communicated during the quoting and booking process. 3. Booking Your Holiday 3.1 Quotes – will be provided in relation to a price for the Travel Arrangements. The quote is valid for a period of 7 days. 3.2 Deposit – a deposit of 25% of the total booking cost, or other amount as advised during the quoting and booking process, is required to secure a booking. 3.3 Late booking requests within 30 days must be accompanied by full payment and may be subject to an urgent processing fee. 3.4 A minimum stay of 3 nights is required for all bookings. 4. Price Policy 4.1 Prices are valid for the period until 31 December 2017. All prices are per person twin in Australian Dollars unless otherwise specified. 64 India & The Orient

Prices are subject to the quote provided. 4.2 Travel Arrangement prices are quoted for the entire package and itemised component costs cannot be given. 4.3 Travel Arrangements – prices may be based on Products being booked in groups, and accordingly Customers must travel together throughout the Travel Arrangements. 4.4 Surcharges – the price of the Travel Arrangements is subject to the possibility of surcharges. Surcharges may be incurred (without limitation) in connection with: currency exchange rates, increases in Product prices, fuel levies, scheduled airfares, hotel and ground transportation charges, game park entrance fees and any other increases in connection with the Travel Arrangement. 4.5 Where there is any change in the costs incurred by A&K in providing the Services, A&K may vary its price to account for such change by notifying the Customer, whether or not the Customer has made full payment. 4.6 Changes in the Australian Dollar – the financial commitments A&K undertakes in order to offer the prices mean that prices cannot be reduced or refunded if the Australian dollar strengthens. 4.7 Products not Utilised – no refunds are made in respect of Products not utilised, for example, accommodation, meals and sightseeing excursions. 4.8 Goods and Services not Included – the following are excluded from the Travel Arrangements price: International Airfares, arrival and/or departure taxes, fuel levies and surcharges, passport and visa costs, travel insurance, personal expenditure including drinks, laundry, room services, meals and gratuities, unless expressly included. 4.9 Prices quoted include GST. Prices for the supply of the Travel Arrangements and the Services exclude any other taxes, duties or imposts imposed on or in relation to the Travel Arrangements and the Services in Australia or overseas. The Customer is liable to pay any amount of GST imposed on any Product. 5. Payment 5.1 Final Payment – unless otherwise agreed in writing the final payment must be received by A&K no later than 90 days prior to the Departure Date. 5.2 Where bookings are made less than 90 days before the Departure Date, full payment must be made at the time of booking. 6. Amendments 6.1 A&K reserves the right to modify program itineraries, including arranged sightseeing, and substitute accommodations, including vessels and trains, at any time due to unforeseen circumstances or circumstances beyond A&K’s control. Every effort will be made to operate itineraries as planned, but alterations may occur after the final itinerary has been issued. 6.2 A&K will endeavour to assist if the Customer requests an amendment to the Travel Arrangement booking up to 90 days prior to the Departure Date, subject to the following; a) Amendment Charge – fees apply to any Customer requesting a change to a confirmed booking. b) Additional Charges – all other expenses incurred by A&K may also be payable by the Customer at A&K’s discretion.

c) Any charges arising from a request for an amendment are payable by the Customer whether or not A&K is successful in confirming the requested amendment. d) Late Amendments – amendments made by the Customer within 90 days of the Departure Date, are treated as cancellations and re-bookings. Cancellation charges apply as detailed below. 6.3 In relation to the ‘Iran: Ancient Wonders of Persia’ itinerary, due to limited number of hotels available in Iran, all hotels listed in this Itinerary are subject to change prior to travel. Your Abercrombie & Kent representative will keep you informed of any changes and can assist you with a complete and up to date hotel list at time of documentation. Days prior to Departure Date From booking to 91 days prior

Percentage of Travel Arrangements Price Payable $1,000 per person

90 – 46 days prior

45%

45 or less

100%

7. Cancellations By The Customer 7.1 The Customer must give A&K notice if it intends to cancel any Travel Arrangements. 7.2 Charges – the following charges are payable by the Customer in accordance with the number of days prior to the Departure Date following notice being received by A&K of cancellation: 7.3 Additional Charges – the Customer may incur further cancellation charges from some Suppliers and local agents. 8. Cancellations and Material Alteration by A&K 8.1 A&K may treat a booking as cancelled and levy cancellation charges if the Customer does not pay the balance of the Travel Arrangements price at 90 days prior to the Departure Date. 8.2 Force Majeure – A&K may, at its sole option, where circumstances outside of its control affect the provision of Travel Arrangements (such as flood, fire, act of God, war or threat of war, physical unrest, riots, civil disturbances, terrorist activities (threatened or actual), strikes, port or airport closure, technical problems with transport, alteration or cancellation of scheduled travel services) cancel scheduled Travel Arrangements at any time and may at A&K’s sole and absolute discretion: a) offer the Customer alternative Travel Arrangements or Products of comparable standard as may be appropriate in the circumstances; or b) if alternative Travel Arrangements or Products are not offered by A&K, A&K will make a prompt proportional (taking into account the extent of the Travel Arrangements that have been provided or arranged) refund of monies paid by the Customer. 8.3 A&K may charge a reasonable fee to cover the administration costs associated with providing alternative Travel Arrangements or Products. 8.4 Material Alteration – if a Material Alteration becomes necessary within 90 days of the Departure Date, for any reason other than the circumstances described in clause 8.2 A&K will endeavour to offer comparable Products or a full refund of all monies paid by the Customer.


9. Obligations and Liability 9.1 Booking Agent - A&K acts as a booking agent for the Suppliers of Products and accepts no liability for any injury, loss, damage, accident, delay or irregularity that may arise to any Customer or third party resulting from the Customer’s or third party’s use of the Products, unless recoverable from A&K on the failure of a statutory guarantee under the ACL. A&K makes reasonable enquiries to determine that Suppliers provide appropriate Products, but A&K is not responsible for the Products or their standard. 9.2 Except as the Conditions specifically state, the Agreement does not include by implication any other term, condition or warranty in respect of the quality, merchantability, acceptability, fitness for purpose, condition, description, specification or performance of the Travel Arrangements or Services or any contractual remedy for their failure. 9.3 Nothing in these Terms restricts, limits or modifies the Customer’s rights or remedies as a consumer against A&K for failure of a statutory guarantee under the ACL. 9.4 Loss – A&K is not liable for and accepts no responsibility for any direct or indirect loss, financial loss, consequential loss, loss of enjoyment, pain and suffering, damage, injury, accident delay or irregularity occasioned to the Customer, other than if the Customer is a consumer, then to the extent the loss was reasonably foreseeable. 9.5 Nothing in the Conditions is to be interpreted as excluding, restricting or modifying the application of any relevant State or Federal legislation which cannot be excluded, restricted or modified. 9.6 Visa Requirements – it is the Customer’s responsibility to ensure that it has valid passports, visas and permits which meet the immigration and governmental requirements of the country of travel. 9.7 Medical Conditions – the Customer must notify A&K of any pre-existing medical conditions that might reasonably be expected to affect the Travel Arrangements. 9.8 Health Issues – it is the Customer’s responsibility to obtain any vaccinations or health precautions applicable to the country of travel. 9.9 A&K strongly recommends that the Customer insure themselves against loss of deposit, cancellation charges, medical expenses and loss of personal possessions, and any other foreseeable loss or expense. 9.10 The Customer acknowledges and accepts that different places, countries, facilities and tour operators may have lower standards of safety, labeling, warnings and precautions. The Customer is responsible for maintaining personal diligence and safety notwithstanding the level of standards. A&K is not liable for any loss, damage, injury or death that could be avoided if the Australian standards were to apply. 10. Notice 10.1 A notice by the Customer must be in writing, and may be delivered by hand, sent by prepaid mail, sent by facsimile or sent by electronic means such as e-mail to the address or number specified. 10.2 A notice is treated as given to A&K, when:

a) if hand delivered, when delivered; b) if sent by prepaid mail, when received or within 48 hours after posting, whichever is the sooner, c) if sent by email or facsimile, on confirmation of successful transmission. 11. Governing Law 11.1 These Conditions are governed by and are to be construed in accordance with the laws of the State of Victoria and Australia. 11.2 Each party irrevocably and unconditionally submits to the exclusive jurisdiction of the Courts and Tribunal of Victoria and Courts entitled to hear appeals from those Courts and Tribunals. 12. Privacy Information 12.1 Any personal information that A&K obtains from the Customer, or about the Customer from its representative, is necessary for A&K’s business purposes or providing the Customer with A&K’s Travel Arrangements, Products and Services, and may be used in answering any queries the Customer may have, considering the Customer’s application for credit or to become a Customer, performing internal administration and operations, developing, improving and marketing A&K’s products and services, and related purposes. 12.2 A&K’s Privacy Policy details why A&K collects this personal information, who A&K may disclose it to (including whether A&K is likely to disclose it to overseas recipients), and the main consequences (if any) if A&K does not collect the personal information of the Customer. A&K’s Privacy Policy also contains information about how the Customer may seek access to, or correction of, the personal information held about the Customer, and A&K’s complaint resolution procedures. 12.3 A&K will not disclose any personal information to any other party without the consent of the Customer except to the Suppliers, a related entity or adviser of A&K or where A&K is otherwise required by law to do so. 12.4 A&K’s Privacy Policy is available at http://www.abercrombiekent.com.au/legal or by request to A&K by phoning +61 3 9536 1800 or via email at privacy@abercrombiekent.com.au.

for details. Note: Specific programmes may have different Terms & Conditions which will be advised at the time of booking. 16. Earning Qantas Points 16.1 You must be a Qantas Frequent Flyer Member to earn and redeem Qantas Points. A joining fee may apply. 16.2 Membership and the earning and redemption of Qantas Points are subject to the Qantas Frequent Flyer Terms and Conditions, available at qantas.com/terms Qantas Frequent Flyer 16.3 Members can earn 1 Qantas Point per AU$1 spent on Eligible Products. Eligible Product(s) means any new International and Domestic private tour land itinerary booking of seven nights or more, created by Abercrombie & Kent. Excludes flights. 16.4 Qantas Points shall be awarded to you based upon the final amount spent on Eligible Products. 16.5 If Eligible Products are purchased in currencies other than AU$, the amount of Qantas Points earned will be calculated based on the exchange rate of the day when final payment was made. 16.6 Full terms and conditions can be found at https://www.abercrombiekent.com.au/qantasfrequent-flyer/abercrombie-kent-qantas-frequentflyer-terms-and-conditions Meal Codes B = Breakfast, L = Lunch, D = Dinner Photography Credits Our appreciation of imagery to: Aman, iStock Photos, Shutterstock, Sanctuary Retreats, and all our partner hotels, vessels and propeties. Cover Image © iStock Photo , The Temples of Bagan, Myanmar - Stock image

13. Consent for cross-border disclosures 13.1 By making a booking, the Customer acknowledges and consents that A&K will not, as would otherwise be required, be obliged to take steps to ensure that an overseas recipient of Customer Information complies with the APPs. 14. Miscellaneous 14.1 A&K’s failure to enforce any of these Conditions shall not be construed as a waiver of any of the A&K’s rights. 14.2 If any Condition is unenforceable it shall be read down to be enforceable or, if it cannot be read down, the condition shall be severed from the Conditions without affecting the enforceability of the remaining conditions. 15. Hosted Small Group Journeys 15.1 Special conditions apply to the Hosted Small Group Journeys. Please contact A&K Australia 1300 851 800 | abercrombiekent.com.au 65


AFRICA, ARABIA & PERSIA

LATIN AMERICA

HOSTED SMALL GROUP JOURNEYS

EUROPE

AUSTRALIA, NEW ZEALAND & PAPUA NEW GUINEA

LUXURY POLAR EXPEDITION CRUISES

LUXURY SMALL GROUP JOURNEYS

abercrombiekent.com.au Contact your travel professional or Abercrombie & Kent Australia at: Level 3, 290 Coventry Street, South Melbourne, Victoria 3205 Tel 03 9536 1800 Fax 03 9536 1805 Toll Free 1300 851 800 0800 441 638 (within New Zealand) 800 4747 7700 (within Asia) Email contact@abercrombiekent.com.au ABN 55005422999 Licence No 30494


India & The Orient Brochure 2017