Where to Go in 2008
MEDIA RELEASE 15 OCTOBER 2007
Where to Go in 2008
A mix of ancient wonders, spectacular islands, European gems and off the beaten track locations make up Flight Centre Limited’s Top Ten Travel Destinations for 2008.
The company’s network of travel stores and their travel consultants have studied travel trends, surveyed customers and come up with the list of top places to be in 2008.
Getting to Chile has, up until now, been difficult and time consuming because of restricted availability and airline routes. But from 20 December 2007, Lan Chile will fly daily from Auckland to Santiago, opening up new opportunities to explore this amazing destination.
Travellers are drawn to this country because of its many natural attractions, from the northern desert to the Lake District, and the mountains and fjords in the south. It has some superb National Parks, including Easter Island, famous for its mysterious giant statues, and numerous activities for outdoor enthusiasts.
Chile offers the visitor excellent wines and seafood, unique handicrafts and shopping, and a variety of characteristic architecture, making it a beautiful and memorable place to visit.
Great for travellers who have visited her neighbours numerous times, the Philippines is home to bustling Manila, remote tropical islands and legendary scuba diving spots.
The Philippines has some superb all-inclusive luxury resorts spread around the islands. Independent travellers who like to wander off the beaten track and do not mind going without the conveniences of running water will find plenty to fascinate them in the countryside and coastal parts of the Philippines.
The Philippines is one of the few places left in the world where adventurers can wander through tribal lands. Also, the food is delicious, and English is widely spoken.
There is a great deal packed into a small space on the island of Cyprus in the eastern Mediterranean. Not only does it abound with good beaches and holiday resorts, but its relatively tiny landmass is riddled with the relics of ancient history, from the beehive huts of primitive man to classical Greek and Roman ruins, and everything imaginable in-between. Perfect for travellers who have visited Europe numerous times and want somewhere new and exciting to explore. The island has a range of accommodation from backpackers to 5-star resorts to cater for all travellers. In Cyprus it is possible to mingle with crowds, or seek isolation off the beaten track as the mood takes, even in peak holiday season. For this reason the island is also a favoured destination for honeymooners, a reputation enhanced by the fact that legend has it that Cyprus was where Aphrodite, Greek goddess of love, rose from the sea.
From the snow-capped Himalayas in the north to the sun drenched coastal villages of the south, India is the land of extremes.
The country has soared in popularity over the past few years and is now a main player in traveller’s must see lists. The cultural mecca of India draws tourists every year to discover the beginnings of Buddhism and Hinduism, explore the jewelled palaces, visit the chaotic cities and treasure the untouched rural areas.
Kenya is the 'Land of the Lion King' and sits at the centre of the African safari experience, with an outstanding variety of wild animals and Big Five viewing opportunities.
Travellers are starting to flock to Kenya in droves as they can choose to do as little or as much as they like. There are now more tours to Kenya then ever before and availability during peak season is limited. The combination of wildlife, together with its beaches and mountains, make Kenya a fantastic holiday destination.
One of the largest countries in Eastern Europe, Ukraine has been attractive to citizens of Western Europe, North America and now Australasia.
The major attraction for tourists is the natural beauty of the country, with areas like the Carpathian and Crimean mountain ranges, the Black Sea and Sea of Asov, the Crimean peninsula and old cities such as Sevastopol and Yalta.
It is also a popular cruise destination with cruise ships docking at the harbour town of Odessa, known as the 'Pearl of the Black Sea' and river cruises down the Dnieper River.
The Pacific’s secret is rich in culture, unspoilt environment and regarded as one of the most beautiful islands of the South Pacific. Some say it set the scene for Treasure Island written by author Robert Louis Stevenson who lived there.
Offering exceptional value for money, Samoa is full of adventure, natural beauty and pure relaxation. Enjoy a stay in a traditional Samoan fale, swim near waterfalls, go surfing, look out for blowholes, trek into lush rainforest covered mountains, and relax on white sandy beaches.
With Petra now a wonder of the world, Jordan is firmly on the radar. With a reputation for being one of the friendliest countries on earth, it is time for people to explore its immense sense of history, as well as two of the most magnificent sights in the Middle East: the ancient rock-hewn city of Petra and Wadi Rum's spectacular desert scenery.
Jordan is a kingdom layered in antiquity, from the work of Nabataean stonemasons to characters such as Moses and Lawrence of Arabia; from ancient cities and Biblical sites to desert castles, Crusader forts and Byzantine mosaics. This ancient culture belies the fact that it is also a modern country, with a good infrastructure, a thriving business and arts scene, and first class hotels, restaurants and shopping opportunities. The contradictions between the old and new are astonishing.
Slowly gaining popularity, Laos offers natural beauty and shy hospitality combined with a mix of original Buddhist culture and French influences.
It is the least developed of the three former French Indochina states and offers visitors a glimpse of traditional and old-fashioned way of life.
Those willing to brave the lack of infrastructure will discover charming towns and rural villages, smiling, endearing people, splendid scenery, and a slow, relaxed pace of life.
Cuba invokes imagery of classic cars on cobble stoned streets, salsa music, mojitos and cigars - and an increasing number of travellers are finding the island is all this and so much more.
Cuba’s economic and political isolation has inadvertently created colourful and vibrant colonial cities full of passionate people happy to join you in dancing your nights away or sipping a cocktail while the world goes by.
Its natural scenery is also stunning, with spectacular white sand beaches that rank amongst the best of the Caribbean, clear blue waters that are home to one of the largest coral reefs in the world, and a picturesque countryside dotted with sugar plantations, tobacco farms and giant limestone cliffs.
Aspiring travellers can log onto www.flightcentre.co.nz to access a worldwide library of destination information and holiday deals.