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Showing posts from 2011

In need of a New Year’s Getaway?

As happy a time Christmas is, by January, there’s not better feeling than putting your feet up and taking a deep breath of relief knowing that you’ve got 300 odd days until the next round of festive cheer. But seeing as you’ve been buying gifts and treating others around you, why not reward yourself with a New Year’s getaway? Abandon the cold weather, rainy days (and maybe even snow) and fly of to somewhere with abit of winter sun. There’s many places worth going on late deals in January - Luxor would be my personal choice offering great value for money aswell as the nice weather! Other destinations I would suggest include Cairo for a slightly busier sightseeing trip. Going away in the New Year may initially seem expensive, but you can actually find some great deals - Stay for 7 nights in Luxor 3* from just £309! Or see the amazing Pyramids in Cairo 4* for 4 nights from £599 Dubai or Abu Dhabi for either a beach or city break are also great options - Stay for 5 nights in Dubai

Can I fly direct to Bangkok from Manchester?

Unfortunately not, there aren’t any direct flights to Bangkok from Manchester. Direct services to Bangkok are only from Heathrow with Thai Airways, British Airways, Qantas and Eva Air. There are a few easy indirect options for example with Emirates, which is a world class airline and would fly direct from Manchester to Dubai and then you would change aircraft for an onward direct flight to Bangkok. You can even fly on the new double decker A380 aircraft on the Manchester / Dubai leg, which I loved when I flew on the A380. You can do a similar thing with the likes of Etihad Airways, which would go via Abu Dhabi and Qatar Airways which would go via Doha. There are also options with Air France or KLM going via Paris or Amsterdam. Escape Worldwide - Home of Long Haul Holidays

What’s the price of beer in Vietnam?

Mark's currently sitting in a bar in Vietnam, so it seems like there's no better time to ask him about the beverages he's been 'testing out' there... The cost of beer in Vietnam depends on what you drink and where you drink it, but overall the simple answer is - beer is very cheap in Vietnam! Hotels are obviously the most expensive place to drink beer in Vietnam, but even here things do vary dramatically. Business-orientated hotels in the main centres are the most expensive, with a bottle of Heineken or similar at the Sheraton Hotel and Towers in Saigon being 110,000 Dong (£3.65), although in their rooftop Bar add an extra £1 (worth it for the view!) At the other end of things, you can easily get a beer at 12,000 Dong - a mere 40p! In many local bars (and for local read tourist bars, but outside of the larger hotels), a bottle of local beer such as Saigon or Larue will cost 12,000 to 15,000 (40p - 50p), or up to a whopping 30,000 Dong (£1) in a pricier venue. T

48 hours in . . . Kuala Lumpur

Kuala Lumpur is one of the Far East’s most exciting cities, but with loads to see and do it’s important to plan your trip to make the most of your time here. DAY 1 Start your visit to Kuala Lumpur by boarding the frequent hop-on hop-off sightseeing bus that takes in all of the city’s main attractions. There are stops on Bukit Bintang if you’re staying in this part of the city, and throughout the Golden Triangle and KLCC areas too. Head to the older parts of KL to start with - get off at stop 8 in the Chinatown district, and walk through to stop 9 at Central Market. Stroll through colourful Chinatown before arriving at Central Market, which has been refurbished from a traditional market to a centre for traditional handicrafts. Hop back on the bus and continue past the National Palace, through the Lake Garden and on to the National Mosque. AFTERNOON Grab a bite to eat at the KL Tower before taking the lift to the top, for spectacular views across the city. Although a little shorter

Why can't I seem to find many 'All Inclusive' hotels in Thailand?

There are one or two All Inclusive hotels in Thailand , but to be honest the food and drink is so cheap out there you wouldn't want to be staying in your hotel! Last time I was out there I visited three of the beach resorts - Phuket , Krabi and Phi Phi - and I think the most I paid for a meal was £25 and that was the most amazing lobster I've ever had in Phuket. Even the more remote beach hotels have a couple of beach restaurants close by, and if you are in one of the more touristy areas, such as Ao Nang in Krabi, you will be spoilt for choice. You will be able to get a really good meal for about £5 or £6, or just some chicken satay for £1 or so. The bottles of beer are enormous! Singha, Tiger and Chang beer are all very common, as are Happy Hours, so make the most of them! Happy Hour quite often runs from 4 in the afternoon until about 9 in the evening, and the offers tend to be 2 or 1. Given the full price is about £2 for a large bottle, you might not need to be there aft

I want to go on safari in Kenya, but don’t want to keep moving around?

I did a safari in Kenya last year and what I did was to fly from Nairobi straight into the Masai Mara by light aircraft , I then spent 3 nights at a camp before flying back to Nairobi. I found this worked really well as the light aircraft was a FAB way of seeing the Masai Mara from the air and it only took about an hour and a half to get from Nairobi, Also it landed close to the camp so didn’t have to go too far to get to the camp, though on saying that the drive to the camp was amazing, littered with giraffe and zebra. Whilst at the camp I did a couple of game drives a day, which I have to say were simply amazing. I saw the big five plus tons of other animals. I was pretty amazed when we came across a herd of elephant; I counted 20 with a couple of babies, which were so sweet. There is some much to see on the Masai Mara and the local driver/guide, David, was simply fantastic and it was really interesting hearing how he grew up on the Masai Mara. OK you don’t get to see the full

Can I hire a car in Cuba?

Yes, hiring a car in Cuba is an excellent way of seeing the more remote parts of Cuba. Though don’t expect the big plays like Dollar Rent A Car or Hertz. Car hire companies tend to be local Cuban companies so expect some paperwork! Pre-booking before arriving in Cuba is pretty much a must with most companies in the UK only booking the car hire as part of a complete holiday package. A few points worth remembering when hiring a car... Roads are pretty good in most of the country, but as the East is less developed some of the roads in this area can be a bit bumpy. It is more likely you’ll get stuck behind a donkey rather than another car, so progress can be slow occasionally! I found the traffic in Havana reasonably busy but once you’ve made it to the main ring road out of the city things came down a bit! Petrol stations aren’t as common as in the UK, so fill up when you see one! Cars in Cuba tend to be modern and various sizes and types available ranging from small compacts to peo

Where is the best place to see Orang-utans?

Having just returned from an amazing time in Borneo , I found that that there were so many individual experiences you could choose from. But one particular question that is often asked by potential visitors is where is the best place to see Orang-utans ? I actually got to see the Orang-utans twice whilst in Borneo. The first being in the more commonly known Sepilok. The Sepilok Orang-utan Rehabilitation Centre was a moving experience. After chatting to some of the Rangers within the centre, I was warned not to be disappointed if I didn’t see any as this would actually be a good thing. The Orang-utans are trained in order to return back into the Jungle, but are still fed by the Rangers if they are not quite ready to fend for themselves. This process can take years. So waiting on the viewing platform, I was standing wondering would I actually see an Orang-utan in the flesh... and as feeding time came, they appeared. I had mixed reactions at this point - Firstly, it was amazing to be s

Latest special offers and holiday ideas

Hi All,  We have some great special offers at the moment, so check out our latest newsletter at: This week we have some great deals to Thailand , Sri Lanka  and a  Hong Kong  / Dubai THAI TRIPLE CENTRE BANGKOK, PHUKET & KRABI   - From Only £1099 per person  Fantastic savings to Thailand - save up to £300 per person on this superb triple-centre holiday combining three of our favourite parts of the Country, taking in Bangkok, Phuket and Krabi staying in quality hotels throughout.  Check out the details:   SRI LANKA TOUR & BEACH ALL INCLUSIVE TOUR  - From Only £1225 per person  A superb 5-night tour of Sri Lanka followed by 5 nights on beautiful Bentota Beach, with a full sightseeing programme and all meals & drinks included - saving up to £160 per person makes this one of the best deals around.  Check out the detail

Hotel Inspections - it's really hard work!

Visiting hotels in exotic locations may sound like a dream job, but it can be really hard work – honestly! Natalie visited the Cuban beach resort of Varadero as part of a longer trip to the Caribbean ’s largest island, and certainly didn’t get time to chill on the beach! “We were spending two nights in Varadero as part of a week-long trip to Cuba, that had already taken in Havana, Pinar Del Rio and Trinidad – we’d already clocked up quite a few miles and had visited plenty of hotels. Varadero is Cuba’s largest resort so there were various hotels here I was keen to see – I was hoping two days would be enough, but it soon became clear that it wouldn’t! The hotels we’d seen in the other parts of Cuba were generally small places, quite often historic buildings, which meant that they were quite easy to visit – some had only around 15 rooms, with a restaurant and bar, and the odd one also had a pool. Cuba’s historic hotels are generally beautiful and full of character,

Thailand Food.....we love it!

Thailand ’s food is one of the highlights of any visit here, and after many years of travelling to the Country, the staff at Escape Worldwide have their own view of it! Karen used to be the biggest wimp in the office when it came to spicy food, but over the years she’s developed a real taste for Thai food. “I tend to stick to dishes that I know I like, so I don’t get any unexpected surprises. Everything is so fresh, and the seafood in particular tends to be superb – and so well priced, compared to the UK. In fact, I tend to go a bit overboard in Thailand as the food is really good value – crab cakes or spring rolls as a starter for £ 1, a main dish of a Thai curry for maybe £ 1.50, all washed down with copious quantities of Singha or Chang beer – and you still won’t have hit a fiver!” Natalie remembers one meal in particular. “I think the hottest meal I’ve ever had was in Bangkok, when I thought I’d try a Thai Green Curry. The restaurant our hotel, the Dusit Thani, su

What's been going on...48hrs in Hong Kong and more

Hi All, Sorry for next updating the blog recently, all been a bit busy with being away and also welcoming James to our team! So what have you missed?! The following are a couple of our last newsletters that you might of missed: 48 hours in Hong Kong : We focussed on one of our favourite cities in the Far East, Hong Kong . Hong Kong is a diverse fun packed cosmopolitan city with plenty of things to see and do. The star ferry is a great, fun way to get around and cheap too. Stay either on Hong Kong Island or Kowloon with give you a chance to experience this amazing city. Read all about it in our guide: Beaches with a difference: This week we looked a some amazing beach holidays with a bit of a difference. Nha Trang in Vietnam is one our our favourite beach resort with a relax 

Great Holiday Offers - Thailand | Safari | India and many more!

Hi All, Some great offers and holidays ideas for you this week: I was in Thailand the week before last and spent time in Phuket and Khao Lak  and had a great time. Technically it's rainy season there, but in 11 nights we have 3 showers, two of those were in the evening so didn't effect our sunbathing...sorry I mean work! I stayed at the Kata Thani Hotel  in Phuket which was fantastic, on an amazing beach with a choice of swimming pools, bars and restaurants. The hotel is on Kata Noi beach with a couple of shops and restaurants just outside the hotel, and the resort of Kata is only about a 10 minute walk, though it is up hill! Patong is the main resort in Phuket and well worth a night out, it's made, tons of bars, night markets, restaurants, shops, the place doesn't stop, though I was surprised how lovely the beach was for such a busy area! Khao Lak   was my next stop, about 3 hour drive away, stun

Long Haul offers - Thailand | Safari | Cuba and more

Hi All, We've found some of the best loughaul holiday offers around this week, including a superb luxury holiday to Thailand for under £1000, saving a massive £400 per person! We've also got an exciting safari (Karen came back from a safari last week so give her a call if you want to know more) plus a city break in Dubai and a superb Cuba twin centre holiday . For more details about our offers or any of the holidays we feature call us on 020 8989 0970 or e-mail us at A couple of my favourites this week: 5* THAILAND from £995 pp BANGKOK + KRABI Top quality hotels in excellent settings, plus save over £400 per person! The Dusit Thani Bangkok is probably our favourite hotel in the city for its unbeatable location, while the Sheraton Krabi's beachfront setting is perfect for chilling out afterwards. Departures: 16th June 2011 Nights: 3+5 Prices from: £995 per person! DOWNLOAD DETAILS MORE THAILAND HOLIDAYS _____________________

Egypt is back with some amazing holiday ideas and prices

Hi everyone, This week we're having a look at Egypt. I was there last week and boy was it hot and the Red Sea just simply stunning. Our newsletter has a look at some amazing offers, check it out: I visited Hurghada , Makadi Bay , a spot of Nile Cruising and Sharm on my visit and the following were a couple of my favourites. MAKADI BAY One of the best family resorts on the Red Sea, Makadi Bay is easy to get to, relaxed and offers a good range of quality hotels. Darren checked out a few hotels due to open in the coming months, including the gorgeous Makadi Spa, set to be one of the most stylish properties in Egypt, and the Sunwing Waterworld with its water slides, wave pool and family fun. Current options include rooms large enough to take a family of six - superb for larger families. Read more details on Makadi Bay: More holiday details can  be found

Something a bit different...holidays without the beach!

Hi everyone, Our newsletter this week had something a little different, holidays without a beach! Check out the ideas: A couple of my favorites are: HAVANA CITY BREAK, CUBA from £849 PARQUE CENTRAL HOTEL Soak up the atmosphere of Havana, one of the world's most mesmerising cities, and stay in one of the best hotels, superbly located where Old and New Havana meet and with some of the best facilities in the City. Departures: 12 JUNE 2011 Nights: 3 Prices from: £849 pp Check out more great holidays to Cuba at: FAR EAST CITIES from £1079 HONG KONG + KUALA LUMPUR Combine two of the liveliest cities in the Far East in one trip - explore vibrant Hong Kong and cosmopolitan Kuala Lumpur, with amazing food and superb shopping a plenty, saving over £500 per couple too! Departures: 15 JUNE 2011 Nights: 4 + 4 Prices from: £1079 pp Check out more great holidays to t

Long Haul Holiday Ideas - Maldives | Borneo | Cuba and more

Firstly Happy Easter everyone! So what you planning to do with all the extra days off? How about planning your holiday. The following are some great ideas to get you started: A couple of my favourites: LUXURY MALDIVES from £1789 TAJ EXOTICA A real favourite of mine, the Taj Exotica is one of the most beautiful resorts in the Maldives, and our offer includes two free nights and complimentary airport lounges. I've stayted at the Taj Exotica and it is simply stunning! Flying from Heathrow on the 19th June, staying 7 nights on a bed and breakfast basis at the 5* Taj Exotica from only £1789 per person. Download the details See more great Maldives holidays at: LUXURY BORNEO from £899 SHANGRI-LA RASA RIA A superb hotel set on a gorgeous beach, complete with it's own Orang Utan sanctu

Triple Centre holidays - Sri Lanka | Egypt | Cuba and more with Escape Worldwide

Hi everyone, On our newsletter this week we focused on triple centre holidays, check it out: Again Escape Worldwide staff have visited the places featured and a couple of my favourites have to be: SRI LANKA from £1139 pp KANDY, SIGIRIYA & BEACH Explore one of our favourite destinations - start in cultural Kandy before continuing to the historical areas around Sigiriya. Finally, hit the beach for some relaxation. Why not include your own Private Car + Driver for only an extra £58 per person! Check out the details: More great holidays to Sri Lanka can be found at: THAILAND from £1145 pp BANGKOK, PATTAYA & PHUKET        A great mix of lively and relaxing - vibrant Bangkok, lively Pattaya and the peaceful beaches of north Phuket, all in one amazing trip. This really is a 

A photo trip around the Maldives with Escape Worldwide

Here at Escape Worldwide  we love the Maldives and have all visited the place a number of times. Check out our photo tour around this stunning destination! We've taken all the photo's, yep it's a hard job! Check out how you to can visit paradise: Happy travelling Darren Escape Worldwide - We've Been, We Know, Just Call!

Favorite Airline?

On a recent flight, Darren got a bit bored and wrote the following blog: 'Sitting on the way to Rio, killing time, I started to look back at the different airlines I had flown with and started to think, what makes a good airline. Is it the seat pitch, the food, the cabin crew, the in-flight entertainment? Personally a bit of all of these! Take the airline I am flying with at the time of writing this blog, on paper the seat pitch isn't great, only 31”, the food was OK, and the movies Ok, though a little dated and no movie on demand, which I am beginning to realise is a big plus! No the flight is pleasant largely due to the cabin crew. The jolly Scot who seems only to happy to constantly give me drinks and the smiley steward who seems to be happy to be in the job. So in a nutshell, BA seems pretty OK! So is it just the cabin crew that make for a good flight? Umh, not always, take a Malaysian flight I was on, for example the seat pitch great, movies on demand, food good, cab

Close encounters with cheetah whilst on Safari in Kenya

On a safari in Kenya , Mark had a very memorable encounter: 'It’s an early start this morning for a game drive from our home on the Masai Mara, the Mara Serena . After a quick coffee we’re leaving the lodge at 6am, but it’s not long before the excitement starts. Within a few miles of the lodge we’ve already seen a herd of around 30 elephants crossing the plains, and a pack of the somewhat ungainly looking bat-eared foxes, but we’ve just spent the last few minutes watching a cheetah with two cubs, and we’re the only people for miles around! The cheetah is perched on a small hillock with the cubs, using the raised ground as a vantage point as the sun comes up over the Mara. After a few minutes of us staring at her, and her assessing us, the cheetah comes down from the hillock and heads in our direction. She decides to use our vehicle as a lookout, and jumps on the spare tyre on the back to get a better view of the area, popping her head over the roof of the vehicle – we’re all p

Hua Hin Pub Crawl

Whenever we visit a destination we always like to explore local places to eat & drink, so when Darren & Mark were in Hua Hin , they turned this in to a ‘pub crawl’ of the town centre! “Hua Hin is a great place for trying local Thai food, and combined with a good selection of places for a cool beer, it makes an ideal pub crawl location – everything in the town centre is fairly close together, so it’s easy to try various locations without having to walk too far! We started at the Hilton Hua Hin, one of our favourite hotels in the town as it’s so handy for the beach and the town’s restaurants and bars, yet still maintains a lovely atmosphere. The bar at the front of the hotel is a great place for a spot of people-watching, and we started the day with a Tiger beer – they also have a range of Thai beers, but Tiger seemed like a good starting point! From here we headed along to where the fishing boats drop their catch off, which to be honest didn’t smell particularly pleasant,

China Tours - Amazing tours at great prices!

Hi All, This week we are focusing on China, with some amazing escorted touring options to the fascinating country. Check out the ideas: A couple of my favorites are: MAJESTIC YANGTZE  - 12 night tour  Combine the key highlights of Beijing, Xian and Shanghai with a 4-night cruise on the mighty Yangtze River, plus the Panda reserve at Chengdu. Download the details: CHINA EXPERIENCE  - 8 night tour Visit the key highlights of China - Beijing, Xian and Shanghai - taking in the Great Wall, the Terracotta Warriors and Shanghai's famous Bund. Dowload the details: GLORIES OF CHINA - 12 night tour Combine the key highlights of Beijing, Xian and Shanghai with Guilin and the Li River, staying amongst rice fields and stunning scenery at Yangshuo. Download the d

Long Haul offers - Kenya Safari | Grenada | Egypt | Maldives and more

Hi all, This week we have some FAB special offers and holiday ideas, check em out: For starters we have a great offer to the 4*+ Calabash Hotel in Grenada, have a look at the details: 7 nts B&B at the 4*+ Calabash Hotel  - from £1375 per person Or how about Christmas in Kenya , 5nts Safari  followed by 5nts in Mombasa  from only £2189 per person, See the details: How about a bargain to Egypt  - 7nts Nile Cruise  followed by 7nts relaxing on the Red Sea  from only £899 per person and that on an All Inclusive basis as well! More details at Finally, Maldives , only £912 per person staying at the 5* Kurumba in the Maldives , amazing value! We have plenty of amazing holidays

Escape Worldwide awarded agent of the month

Escape Worldwide was awarded Agent of the Month by one of our key suppliers, Travel2. Here's Darren receiving our certificate and bottle of champagne! Well done to all the team at Escape Worldwide! Darren

See our new Escort Touring Website

Hi, Introducing - new from Escape Worldwide! Our newest website brings you the best escorted tours around the world, from the Americas to the Far East, with everything from historic and cultural tours to wildlife safaris. All itineraries are accompanied by a guide - some meet you in the UK - and most are flexible enough to include a beach stay or other areas afterwards. Here's a few of our favourites . . . Grand Indochina Tour Accompanied from the UK, this tour combines the best of Laos, Vietnam and Cambodia, a truly fascinating part of the world. 15 nights from £3445 per person DOWNLOAD DETAILS INDOCHINA TOURS ___________________________ Ceylon Tour (Sri lanka) Our most popular tour of Sri Lanka takes in Kandy, the historical north and the beautiful south, with flexible beach options. 14 nights from £1199 per person DOWNLOAD DETAILS SRI LANKA TOURS ___________________________ Cheetah Safari A superb 7-

Some great new holiday ideas and offers!

Hi All, Check out some great holiday ideas and offers we have this week: Makadi Bay - Palace Family Star Probably one of the best value options this week is to the Red Sea in Egypt with some amazing kids price....only £399 per child , even in school holidays! Have a look if you don't believe me - We've got plenty of other offers so why note check out the newsletter....or go to for more great family holiday ideas! Happy travelling Darren Escape Worldwide - Home of great holidays

Thomas Cook Add Fuel Charges

Hi All, Bit of travel news for you: Thomas Cook are imposing an additional fuel charge, upto £40 per person for long-haul flights. Not all airlines are so check before you book with anyone as some may just try to add on £40 as this is in the news! Happy travelling Darren

Kenya Safari | Oman | Thailand and more great holiday ideas from Escape Worldwide

Hi fellow travellers, This week we have some great holiday offers: Longhaul Holiday Offers This week explore South Africa by fly-drive, go cheetah-spotting on the Masai Mara, party and chill in Thailand or be pampered in Oman - superb holidays across the Globe, all at excellent prices and fully ATOL-protected. Call us on 020 8989 0970 or e-mail us at for more details today. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- KENYA SAFARI from £1575 MASAI MARA + MOMBASA A one-off special offer saving £150 per couple on the superb 7-night 5* Cheetah Safari, departing 29 April, complete with free Hippo Pool breakfast on the Masai Mara. Combine it with the beaches of Mombasa or Zanzibar, or just do the safari itself. CHEETAH SAFARI   - 7 -  FB -  £1575 pp + INDIAN OC RES MOMBASA 7+7  - HB -  £1845 pp + ROYAL ZANZIBAR RESORT 7+7 -  AI -  £2075 pp See more details at:

Great special offer from Escape Worldwide

Hi fellow travellers, Escape Worldwide has some great special offers this week: INDIAN OCEAN TWIN from £15 99 SRI LANKA & THE MALDIVES Spend a week in Sri Lanka and a week in the Maldives, combining the culture, scenery and charm of Sri Lanka with the idyllic relaxation of the Maldives - a perfect combination. Fully flexible, with lots of hotels to choose from. Sri Lanka - KANI LANKA  - 7nt   Maldives - MEERU ISLAND - 7nts £1599 pp DOWNLOAD DETAILS HUA HIN, THAILAND from £619 ANANTARA RESORT The Anantara Hua Hin is a beautifully designed hotel with classic Thai style, located a short distance from the centre of Hua Hin, which is one of the more Thai of resorts. Explore the night market, try seafood delicacies or just chill on the beach. HUA HIN - ANANTARA 7nts - £619 pp 14nts - £799 pp   DOWNLOAD DETAILS FAR EAST MULTICENTRE from £1479 HONG KONG, BALI & SINGAPORE Hong Kong,

Escape Worldwide - Travel Calendar for July to September

Hi all, This weeks travel calendar looks at some great holiday ideas for July to September ( ): JULY - Great Weather in Bali When much of the Far East is in its rainy season, Bali bucks the trend and is far drier, making it a great time to visit. Spend your time on the beach or include a night or two inland at Ubud, taking in some of the Island's amazing scenery and fascinating culture. Holidays are for 10 nights - it's also possible to include a city stopover on the way to Bali , with Hong Kong, Singapore, Bangkok and Kuala Lumpur all possible! Hotel Ideal For Rating Board Prices from BUMAS -  Family-run friendliness - 3* BB £989 pp MERCURE - Handy for local dining  - 4* BB £1079 pp MELIA BALI - Stylish and spacious - 4+* RO £1195 pp HOLIDAY IDEAS TO BALI AUGUST - Red Sea Family - up to 4 kids The 5* Makadi Palace Family Star is a great option for larger families, as rooms here tak