Australasia & the Pacific Islands

Our Australasia & the Pacific Islands travel blog

Delightful Dunks

You know you're officially on holiday when you dive head first (or climb gracefully, or bomb, you get the picture) in to the cool, refreshing water of the hotel's swimming pool. And we're not talking about any old 25m situation, we're talking infinity pools with beautiful views, romantic private plunge pools and child-friendly pools to keep the little monsters busy for hours. So without further ado, here are seven of our favourite hotel swimming pools around the world...

Original Travel Does Top Gear: Our Favourite Road Trips

Dear Top Gear Producers, we couldn't help but notice that you haven't had much luck in the presenter department in the last year or two. Perhaps it's time for a gear change (see what we did there?) and we are officially throwing our hats in the ring. Here's the pitch: fewer of the aforementioned pesky presenters, more switch-back turns, sweeping coastal roads, cross-country highways and epic scenery. Yep, let's make Top Gear one giant, worldwide road trip. A luxury road trip no less with the team here at Original Travel sharing the inside track (sorry, can't help it) on all the very best hotels to stay at along the way. Genius, we think you'll agree. And as if you needed any more convincing, here are a few of our favourite road trips to whet your appetite.

Suite Treats

George Osborne may have declared war on sweets with the introduction of his sugar tax in this year's budget but luckily we get our kicks from the suite (see what I did there?) treats of an altogether different kind. Our suite tooth (sorry, can't help it) is rather partial to the exceptional service, magical settings and chic interiors of some of the very best hotel suites in the world. Think breathtaking views, private pools, luxurious furniture and being spoiled to within an inch of your life. So sit back, relax and spend a couple of minutes ogling at some of the very finest suites from around the world; here are a few of our favourites...

Parlez-vous Anglais?

Consider the English-speaking world. Don't panic - this isn't going to be some misty-eyed paean to the age of Empire, when Britannia ruled the waves, and the sun never set, etc; but if you think about the places that speak English as their first language, they make for a pretty spectacular wish list of destinations. Visiting places like Canada, New Zealand, South Africa, Australia and the US of A means scenery, culture, wildlife, food and fun for sure, but there's another - less obvious, but no less important - reason to go.

Seven of the Best: Boutique Boltholes

What do the words 'boutique hotel' mean to you? Perhaps it's the independently owned and run element? Few rooms, bespoke interiors, secluded locations, impeccable and personal service? - They're all on the list. And it has to be said that the place you rest your head at night is a hugely significant part of your holiday, whether it's a tented camp in the middle of the desert or a secret hideaway in the heart of a city. While the sights, sounds, tastes and smells of a place are the stuff that treasured memories are made of, the hotel could, and should, take your holiday to the next level. So here they are, seven of our favourite boutique boltholes in the world…

8 of the Best Places on the Planet to Throw a Rugby Ball Around

Let's be honest - rugby is not for the faint hearted. It's a game of fervent patriotism, fierce rivalry and tough men running around hitting each other (a highly technical assessment, we think you'll agree). And with the Rugby World Cup gathering pace, it's hard not to get swept up in the excitement. Which led us to think (always dangerous) about the very best places on the planet to chuck a rugby ball around, from beautiful beaches to frozen lakes, and everything in between. So here goes, eight of the best places on our dear earth for a casual game of rugger…

Our Top 10 New Year Holidays and Getaways

Between Aunt Marg's stuffy New Year's Eve party and getting stuck in hours of traffic, New Year's Eve is normally a painful ordeal. As a result, all those classic 'Bridget Jones' resolutions seem to go out the window in the early hours of the 1st January. We, at Original Travel, think that New Year's Eve should be spent revelling in all those things you intend to give up the next day. Why not escape that dreaded New Year's party, the never-ending pile of Christmas thank you letters needing to be written and the turkey you have been living off for days, and jet off to somewhere a little further from home. These are our top 10 best places to be for New Year's Eve...

Christmas Getaways: Time To Start Planning

Talk of Christmas already?!? Before you think we've gone all Argos on you, the majority of great festive season holiday spots do get booked up well in advance and as travel guardian angels we naturally only want the best for you. So, if the thought of doing one of Nigella's coke soaked hams (now, now) is not on the agenda this year then why not think about jetting off to pastures new? Whether you want to embrace yuletide traditions or get away from them, here's a little selection for you.

Our Top Ten Honeymoon Hotels

Everybody loves a list, and anyone planning a honeymoon needs this particular one in their life. After much deliberation the team at Original Travel have come up with their Top 10 Honeymoon Hotels from around the world. Editing the list down to a mere ten proved mighty difficult, and more than a little contentious, but we like a challenge, so here goes with the finest post-wedding wonders…

New Zealand: The Ultimate Holiday Destination?

Bold statement, I know (and I may be slightly biased, being Original Travel's resident New Zealand expert and all), but New Zealand is the ultimate luxury holiday destination. Firstly, it's home to scenery that truly has to be seen to be believed. Yes, the photos look incredible but even they can't do justice to New Zealand's awe-inspiring diversity of landscapes. Then there's the people and culture; you'll struggle to meet a friendlier and more welcoming nation of people anywhere in the world, let alone one that is steeped in such a rich tapestry of history. Next up to be raved about is the food and wine - two words: simply sensational. Oh, and did I mention the sheer volume and variety of activities on offer? New Zealand is, quite simply, the full package.

Australia Holidays: From Kangaroo Island to the Great Barrier Reef

A holiday in Australia will never be a quick trip for us Brits, with its 24 hour journey time, but it is certainly a country I would recommend pencilling in on your bucket list. I have just returned from a two week trip to this amazing country and, although I would recommend spending a little longer in each place than I managed, Australia is a fantastic luxury holiday destination. Give yourself 2.5 weeks and you will be able to experience some of the very best that this hugely diverse country has to offer.

Best Places to Watch the Sunrise

Seize the day! The early bird catches the worm!.. you get the picture, and if you can drag yourself from peaceful slumber, here's our top 5 places around the world to watch the sunrise.

Private Island Holidays: Robinson Crusoe Meets Modern-Day Billionaire

What does a wanderlusting billionaire have in common with Robinson Crusoe? A penchant for desert islands, of course. Private Islands have become the ultimate statement of wealth and opulence in the past few decades. Little did Crusoe know that his life of primitive solitude would be so coveted in the 21st Century (minus the random acts of cannibalism, natch). Maybe it's the commuting-hell we go through every day, or our fantasy to be swept a shore with just eight songs, one book and a luxury item a la Radio 4 that has given private island ownership cult status.

The World on Sale

So what's up? It's more a question of what's down, and particularly against the Pound, thanks to a resurgent British economy. The rest will inevitably catch up (we're good sports like that) so the exchange rate bonanza won't last, but in the meantime there are bargains to be had. The World's on sale - get shopping!

Loafing Abroad: The Best Luxury Hotels in the World

In ten years of owning a travel company I've found that clients fall into two very distinct camps. For some, the hotel is a mere utility - a roof over their heads at night while they pack endless activities into busy daytime schedules. For others, it's only about the hotel, and the thought of actually doing anything brings them out in a cold sweat that can only be remedied by another chilled glass of rosé. I know which camp I'm in, and after years swanning around the world staying in fabulous hotels and lodges (all in the interests of research, you understand), here's my list of the loafiest best luxury hotels in the world.

Top 10 Honeymoon Destinations

In need of some inspiration for your honeymoon? We are here to help! Want to know where in the world is best at a particular time of year? Or where you can dine alone on the beach at sunset? Or even where you can be pampered at a spa under the sea? We are here to help you create a completely bespoke luxury honeymoon. Give us a starting point and we will guide you through the process with your own personal travel consultant. Here are our top 10 honeymoon destinations...

Best Holidays for Teenagers

Are you having difficulty trying to think of a holiday destination to take your teenagers? Wondering how on earth you are going to tear them away from technology and encourage them to hang out with their parents for a week or two? Look no further, as we have come up with a list of the best holidays for teenagers which we believe are guaranteed to turn your youths into the perfect travelling companions!

Christmas Breaks: Embrace or Escape Santa

Whether you're a lover or a hater (of the festive season, that is) there are many wonderful places to spend the holiday. If you want to embrace or escape Father Christmas and all that he brings, allow us to suggest a few luxury getaways; from quiet couples escapes to large family get-togethers, low key retreats or celebratory breaks…

Room with a View Favourites

These are ten of our all-time favourite rooms with views that we will never tire of! How do you like your views? From sunrises over deep gorges and flat plateaus, to long drawn-out sunsets casting long shadows along the beach, often the most memorable aspects of travelling are the views. Whether you're staying in valleys or on mountains, near volcanoes or cliffs, inland or by the sea, there are hotels with just about every imaginable view possible. These are ten of our room with a view favourites that we will never tire of!

Top Honeymoon Destinations

Original Travel's honeymoons, be it a pampering mini-break or a far-flung exotic escape, will provide a welcome respite from wedding stresses and prove the most happy of starts to life as man and wife. Here are just some of our top honeymoon destinations …

Relaxing Holidays: Fly and Flop

If day-to-day life is a whirlwind of chaos, long hours at work and too little sleep, you'd be forgiven for wanting to do absolutely nothing when on holiday.

Sports Holidays: On Your Marks

Rumour has it that a particular sporting bandwagon is rolling into town this summer. If, like us, you missed out on tickets, take a more Original stance and indulge in your favourite disciplines some place else.

80 Senses: #78 - The Goroka Show in Papua New Guinea

PNG is PDG (pretty damn good). Papua New Guinea is as close as you can get to frontier travel in this day and age. The interior of the country (the Highlands) remained completely uncharted until the 1930s when gold prospectors who had assumed the area was uninhabited due to the rugged terrain found over a million people still living a virtually stone age lifestyle.

We had such a brilliant experience booking through you and really appreciated all of your advice and support.


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