Our nation’s capital is one of our best-kept secrets. With boundless beauty and ceaseless scenery, Canberra is truly so much more than just politicians and a man-made lake! With so many things to see and do, it’s difficult to find the time to experience it all in Australia’s Capital Territory, but on the list of must-see events is the annual festival, the Floriade.
Now in its 29th year, Australia’s biggest celebration of Spring is held annually from September until October and it showcases one million flowers in bloom in Canberra’s Commonwealth Park. As well as the glorious flowers by day, for five exciting nights, the park comes alive with Floriade NightFest with roving entertainment, night markets and live music acts.
Welcoming 400,000 local, interstate and international visitors each year, Floriade, situated near the banks of Lake Burley Griffin, has become a wonderful month-long festival of music, cultural celebrations, horticultural workshops, art exhibitions and entertainment.
Although the Floriade has grown since its inaugural bloom in 1988 to celebrate Australia’s Bicentenary and Canberra’s 75th birthday, it has always been a stunning floral display of the bulbs and annuals that grow so well in Canberra’s unique climate.
This year, the Floriade will run between 17 September and 16 October, and Victor Travel are offering an eight day coach tour for you to see some of the picturesque landscape between South Australia and Canberra, and spend some time experiencing the attractions A.C.T has to offer, including a visit to the famed Floriade.
With stops along the way, including the beautiful, agricultural western Riverina town of Hay in NSW and the historic, military town of Wagga Wagga, Victor Tours host a beautiful and cultural seniors coach tour experience.
Once the coach arrives in Canberra on the third day, you are set to explore the sights with the group. You’ll admire the views from Mt Ainslie and peruse the National Museum of Australia, before visiting the Tulip Top Gardens. The Australian War Memorial is one of the most poignant tourist destinations in the country and the last stop on day three of the coach tour. The memorial commemorates the sacrifice of men and women who have died in war. Wander through the Hall of Memory, stop for pause at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier and Pool of Reflection, and view the Roll of Honour, which lists the names of over 102,000 Australian servicemen and women who have died in war. The tour will stay to hear the Last Post and closing ceremony.
On the fourth day, the coach will drive through Embassy Row and The Lodge, where you can wave to the Prime Minister, if he’s home; and if not, he may be at Parliament House, which is the next stop! Then it’s off to the Floriade where there is plenty of time to drink in the beauty, perfume and colour of the festival of flowers.
On the way home, the tour will venture through the gorgeous coastal town of Eden, before heading to Lakes Entrance. Along the way the group will be seeing some fascinating history and historical landmarks. Then it’s off through Victoria where you’ll visit The Morwell Rose Gardens and the Royal Botanic Gardens, Cranbourne.
A delightfully scenic, festively floral and poignantly historical tour, the eight-day coach tour, featuring Canberra’s Spring festival, the Floriade, is one not to be missed.
There are now so many great ways to find exciting travel destinations in our more global economy. The Internet has opened up a whole world of possibilities and, while it can be hard to be discerning at times with the universe at your fingertips, the options certainly are endless. It seems there are more and more online travel broker websites and booking options where you can piece together the puzzle of your travel adventure with a few clicks of a button.
With the rise of online travel booking sites, the outlook for the humble travel agent was bleak, and it looked as though agencies were becoming thing of the past. The experience of going into an office, picking up a glossy brochure and flipping through it, while a friendly agent with a uniform and a smile tapped away at a computer determining the best schedule and price for your upcoming holiday, was a pleasant one. Those days, though, appeared to be fading: overshadowed by the convenience of booking from your home office.
But the slow demise of the travel agent could be as much of an illusion as the apparent value for your money when you book through an online broker site. According to Travel Talk magazine, results from a recent independent study in America have shown that more people are heading to their local travel office; with agent usage is at its highest level in three years. The report also showed that travel professionals are saving their clients time, and a significant amount of money.
Conducted by market research firm TNS Global, the study showed travel agents were more beneficial to consumers than online agencies, in terms of saving money and time. Of those polled, 69 per cent reported that agents saved them time in planning and booking and 66 per cent said professional travel agents helped them to avoid making costly errors.
The risks of booking through an online agency can be expensive, and can be detrimental to your whole travel experience. Visiting an agency and speaking with a travel consultant can help you to have a positive travel experience, by way of a human interaction: someone to talk you through the itinerary, and offer travel tips and suggestions for destination that you might never have discovered when click-booking your adventure.
Booking online can be a gamble. To get the best value from your time and money, visiting an agency could be your best bet. Your agent in Australia should be ATAS travel accredited and dedicated to helping you find the best deals and experiences tailored to your requirements and tastes. The ATAS is the AFTA (Australian Federation of Travel Agents) Travel Accreditation Scheme, and it sets the benchmark of quality for the travel industry. An agency must meet a range of criteria to receive the right to use the ‘ATAS – travel accredited’ branding, which is a symbol or quality and professionalism, which is not often found with online booking agencies.
Victor Tours are an ATAS accredited travel agent and tour operator, with old-fashioned service and a smile. Dedicated to finding the best travel itinerary for you, Victor Tours will save you time and money, and offer professional service and advice. They’re family owned and operated, so they are committed to planning your holiday the way you want to travel. Visit Kym and Adona at Victor Travel today.