Escape Worldwide is a long haul travel agent based in the UK. We specialise in various destinations such as Thailand, Kenya, Tanzania and Cuba and many of the places we feature have been visited by us.
See http://www.escapeworldwide.co.uk for more info!
A safari is one of the greatest travel experiences imaginable – there’s nothing quite like seeing huge herds of elephants crossing the plains, packs of lions lazing under a tree or a pod of hippos cooling off in the river making their unique noise that sounds like they’re laughing. At this time of year the annual migration is in full swing on Kenya’s Masai Mara, when a million or more grazing animals – wildebeest, zebra and a host of other creatures – head to the area in search of fresh grasslands, staying here until November when they return to the Serengeti. Whatever time of year you go on safari, though, there’s always likely to be a huge amount of wildlife activity, with big cats, elephants and most other game being resident here year-round.
Each safari experience is different, and totally memorable. Even if you’ve been on safari before you’re likely to see different wildlife on a repeat trip, and the variety of wildlife can be staggering. It’s like a textbook opening up in front of you, with the classic ‘Big 5’ of lion, buffalo, elephant, leopard and rhino being extended to the ‘Big 9’ on the Masai Mara, taking in cheetah, zebra, giraffe and hippo - kids will love spotting as many of them as possible!
Amazing Cheetah on the Masai Mara
East Africa has some of the best wildlife viewing opportunities of anywhere in the world, and Kenya especially is an ideal option for a family safari. It’s just a 9 hour flight to Nairobi and numerous national parks are within easy reach of the city - combine a few different parks on one itinerary to give a really good mix of landscapes and wildlife. Whatsmore, with prices starting at under £1500 per person for a 5-night safari next Easter, it’s remarkably good value too. Travelling from park to park is fascinating, taking in the varied geography of the area and seeing day to day life in local towns and villages. It’s possible to visit a local school or a Masai village, where the difference to life at home couldn’t be more apparent.
If you want to keep travelling to a minimum, head straight to the Masai Mara, an hour’s flight from Nairobi by light aircraft – just getting there is half the experience, flying across Kenya with spectacular views, and as you come in to land over the Mara you’ll get your first glimpses of the game on the ground. A great family option here is the Mara Intrepids Camp, where 30 beautiful tents are spread throughout the riverside setting, including two excellent family tents. Unlike some properties the Mara Intrepids doesn’t have any age restrictions from kids, and the variety of wildlife they’re likely to see within close proximity of the camp will take their breath away. The camp runs the Adventurers Club for kids, introducing them to the animals and plants of the Masai Mara with a Masai naturalist, with activities including an obstacle course to show what the animals have to go through on a daily basis! On your return journey from the Mara your safari vehicle is likely to have to clear the airstrip of zebra and antelope before your light aircraft can land.
A safari holiday is packed with activity and adventure, and you’re bound to come away having learned a great deal, both about Africa’s wildlife and also its people and places.
Don’t miss…for the grown-ups, a hot air balloon ride at dawn over the Masai Mara – float gently above the trees to see the wildlife below as it starts the new day.
Don’t miss…expect the unexpected – a cheetah jumping on the roof of your vehicle as a lookout or a rhino refusing to let you pass have both happened when we’ve been of safari!
One to avoid…there’s not much you can do about it, but you may be stuck in your vehicle for a while if a lion decides to have a nap in the shade the vehicle provides!
MALAYSIA Airlines plans to introduce its first Airbus A380 on the Heathrow-Kuala Lumpur route from July 1.
The first 494-seat aircraft, featuring a new livery, will run flights three times a week between London and the Malaysian capital.
A second A380 will enter the London route from the end of August to offer daily operations while a third will be used on the Kuala Lumpur-Sydney route.
Group chief executive Encik Ahmad Jauhari Yahya said: “We are the first to introduce the A380 into service using a uniquely refreshed look and feel, instead of the regular corporate identity, to showcase our latest premium offering in products and services.
"This will be our flagship aircraft to launch our exciting new levels of comfort, luxury and convenience in long haul travel.
“The investment in this latest aircraft, its technology, futuristic style and innovative design in cabin comfort are our initiatives to ensure that our passengers continue to experience an exciting new level of comfort, luxury and convenience.
"This is the identity that will move us from traditional classic to premium contemporary in our efforts to position Malaysia Airlines as a preferred premium carrier.”
Malaysia will operate A380s in a three-class configuration comprising eight first class seats and 350 in economy on the main deck, plus 66 business class seats and 70 in economy on the upper deck.
The first class cabin will feature full flat bed seats with individual 23 inch in-flight entertainment screens. Business class will also have full flat bed seats each measuring 72 inches in length together with individual 17-inch screens.
The economy class will have a 32 inch seat pitch and individual 10.6 inch IFE screens.
In-seat laptop charging facilities will be made available on every seat in first and business class. Lap top charging facilities are shared by every two seats in economy. All classes will be equipped with USB port and satellite telephone facilities.
The carrier’s ‘Chef-on-Call’ facility, currently available to first class passengers, will also be extended to those in business class on the A380.
An 18-strong cabin crew team will work on board offering a range of Malaysian and International cuisine together with lighter and healthier concept meals.
OMAN hopes to lure more tourists by slashing visa costs by 75%.
The new tourist entry visa fee is OMR 5 and is valid for up to 10 days. Cruise arrival visas are free for up to 24 hours or OMR 5 for multiple visits. A fee of OMR 20 for a single entry for up to a month remains in place.
Under-secretary of tourism Maitha Al Mahrouqi said: “The government has moved proactively to improve Oman’s competitiveness in stop-over, short-stay and conference tourism.
“The changes also encourage travel to Salalah and other regional destinations, and conference organisers to consider Oman as an event location”.
The tourism ministry expects a lift in leisure and short stay visits in the short-term as well as growing numbers of airline transit passengers, up by 19% in the year to September 2011 to 787,000.
Oman is also seeing an increase in cruise ship activity and the new visa arrangements strengthen the case for lines to consider Muscat for crew and passenger exchanges.
“The changes will be welcomed by the global travel and tourism trade,” said Maitha Al Mahrouqi. “The changes make Oman very attractive for the growing stopover, business and cruise passenger segments - areas of great potential.
“The changes also open up possibilities for a wide range of trade and consumer tactical campaigns, including our stopover campaign with Oman Air.”
Escape Worldwide are proud to introduce a new luxury 5* hotel in Mombasa, the Swahili Beach Hotel. The Swahili Beach Hotel is authentic, elegant and simply stunning, and has just opened on beautiful Diani Beach on Mombasa's south coast. African, Arabic and Indian architectural influences have been fused to create the vibrant surroundings of this new hotel.
The Swahili Beach Hotel offers a selection of restaurants with both formal and casual dining. In addition it has a seafront spa, a fitness centre and a choice of shops. For the more energetic, water sports and a PADI scuba diving centre are available, plus a beautiful eight-tier swimming pool, and for younger children a mix of daily daytime activities to keep them entertained. Whether you are looking for relaxation after a safari, a luxury beachfront hotel in which to unwind, or are a family looking for a beachfront hotel on one of Mombasa's finest beaches. The Swahili Beach Hotel has it all!
HONG KONG - Cathay Pacific's newly configured Boeing B747-400 and B777-300ER, featuring the highly anticipated premium economy cabin, will be deployed on the Hong Kong-London route from May onwards.
Between May and June, the B747-400 will service the route thrice weekly – Tuesdays, Fridays and Sundays. From July until October, it will go daily. The aircraft will feature a total of 359 seats: nine in first class, 46 business class seats and 26 premium economy seats, the particulars of which were unveiled in December last year. As a result of the premium economy cabin, there will be fewer economy class seats: 278 instead of 324.
From September onwards, Cathay will deploy B777-300ER, also featuring four classes, operating the same route daily. The B777-300ER aircraft will consist of six first class seats, 53 business class seats, 34 premium economy seats and 182 economy seats.
According to John Slosar, chief executive of Cathay Pacific, the premium economy cabin will not only be spacious and therefore more comfortable than economy, but also provide a complete experience as passengers will enjoy priority check in and boarding as well as enhanced inflight meal options.
Besides London, other services to Sydney, Toronto, Vancouver and New York will also enjoy the product innovation, although their roll out dates have not yet been confirmed.