Tuesday, 30 July 2013

Holiday Questions Answered

This month Nathan answers some more of your travel queries.  E-mail us yours at vip@rbcollection.comvip@rbcollection.com with ‘Journal Travel Question’ as the subject.

I have always wanted to Safari but I don’t want to end up surrounded by too many other vehicles and tourists chasing the same wildlife – where can I go for something more exclusive for our Wedding Anniversary?
Mr Jones, Kings Bromley

This is a fantastic question, as it is something that you have to be very careful about when planning a safari holiday. There are many factors that will determine my answer here, i.e. time of year? Have you been on safari before? How much are you looking to invest in your holiday? For those on a more restricted budget I can suggest some fantastic remote parts of Kenya. Combining these areas with the more exclusive conservancies bordering the world famous Masai Mara will make a fabulous trip. But be warned, as there are two very different sides to Kenya and some can be distracted by attractive low prices which will inevitably mean ending up with hoards of fellow tourists, the opposite of what you want for your special trip. 

Masai Mara

For those of you with slightly deeper pockets, then there can be no better wilderness experience than Botswana, and especially the Okavango Delta. Here you will be one of a select few out on game drives exploring some of Africa's most magical game viewing areas. You will really get a sense of wilderness as you fly in by light aircraft and you will be able to experience a number of different ways to safari, whether that be on foot, game vehicle, motorboat or the famous mokoro (dug out canoe)!

Mokoro in the Okavango Delta

HELP! I am visiting family in Australia and hate flying and so do my teenage sons, what do you suggest?
Mrs Smetherson, Lichfield

Locally you can fly with Emirates from Birmingham via Dubai to Australia which is really handy as you don’t have to worry about flying out of Heathrow.  Dubai is great for a stop-over, especially for families as there is so much to do. From swimming with dolphins in Atlantis to skiing at the world’s largest indoor ski slope to skydiving over the Palm (like my fellow Director Oliver did for charity recently!) We know a great selection of hotels away from the building work that can offer a relaxing break. If Dubai is not your thing then just 1 hour away is Abu Dhabi which is a more laid back Emirate state with a wonderful Mosque, the Ferrari World indoor theme park, the Middle East's biggest water park and a wonderful building-site-free beach. Abu Dhabi is also home to a wonderful Desert Island property as part of a nature reserve adding an interesting experience for all the family, especially teenagers. Approach your flight as if it is part of the trip creating some adventure along the way. If your budget allows, upgrade to Business for more comfort and space.

Abu Dhabi

I am looking for a City Break destination with a short flight, history, culture and plenty to see and do.  I don’t like small cities but at the same time don’t like crowds, is this too much to ask?
Miss Townsend, Sutton Coldfield

Crowds in cities are heavily dependent on the time of year so pick an off-season time to travel; depending on the city we can suggest when is a quieter time to go. A city that ticks all of these boxes, believe it or not, is Prague – there is a great area we know away from the hustle and bustle of the tour groups and stag and hen parties (of which there are much less nowadays anyway). The flight is just under 2 hours and you can fly from East Midlands so it is a convenient destination to visit. The castle is superb and a combined ticket allows you to visit other sights in the city too. It is great city for walkers and living costs are low and so your spending money will go a lot further than some of the other European cities.


I’m looking to plan ahead for some winter sun for but don’t want to fly more than 5 hours, where should I visit?
Mr Coates, Lichfield

The Canary Islands are a firm favourite with British holidaymakers, each island offers something different and all are around 4 hours away. Tenerife is the most popular island and has a good selection of properties including self-catering apartments up to 5* luxury resorts. The Costa Adeje area is popular with our clients as it features a lovely boardwalk style front, with shops and restaurants with an air of quality about them. You may be surprised to hear that Gran Canaria is the second most popular island in the Canaries with British holidaymakers and the Maspalomas area features a wonderful small hotel that we have visited offering excellent service and food. It is a real hidden gem on an island usually dismissed by many, but the white sandy beaches are vast and I am sure you would be pleasantly surprised. For a different Canary Island experience La Gomera is less about beaches and more about scenery, walks, flora and fauna. Fuerteventura has a range of good quality large resorts with white sandy beaches. Each island is very different and so do get in touch to discuss which one would be best for you.


I have heard from friends that some countries can be difficult when travelling with medication, what is your advice?
Mr Ansell, Tamworth

Certain countries do ask you to declare any medication you may be carrying. Ideally, if you are travelling with prescription drugs, take the original prescription with you and if possible a rubber stamped letter from your doctor explaining why you need them. Also only take enough supplies for your holiday, and lastly do declare them on any customs forms that you need to complete. If you are unsure whether this affects your holiday, just ask when you book and we can check for you.

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