Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Begin your journey of love in Australia

Australia is the perfect backdrop for a romantic getaway. While you plan the holiday with your loved one, be sure to include some of the following on your escapade!

Take a private seaplane ride over the Heart Reef and indulge in a private island picnic in the islands of the Great Barrier Reef, Queensland

Located in the gorgeous Great Barrier Reef, the Heart Reef is a place for lovers created by Nature herself.

You can enjoy a romantic picnic on the pristine white sands of Whitehaven Beach or relax on the shores of Whitsunday Islands famous for turquoise blue waters.

Pamper your loved one at one of Australia's famous luxury lodges

At the edge of national parks, overlooking the ocean or in the outback, Australia's luxury lodges are known for their magnificence as well as their remoteness.

You could head to qualia on Hamilton Island, or Hayman Island in Queensland, Emirates One & Only Wolgan Valley in the Blue Mountains, or the spectacular Southern Ocean Lodge at Kangaroo Island, South Australia.


A performance for a couple at the Sydney Opera House

This iconic shell roof has come to define what Australia means to people around the world.

With a varied and full program, the Sydney Opera House is one of the city’s busiest music, arts and performance venues. Take a Backstage Tour together or book yourself a performance at this world heritage site. 


A romantic hot air balloon ride over Yarra Valley near Melbourne

Floating serenely among the clouds over the lush vineyards of Yarra Valley which sounds almost exactly like how love makes you feel.

And once you're done with the balloon ride, enjoy a gourmet champagne breakfast. 


Explore Gold Coast

The Gold Coast boasts of a beautiful coastline. Take a plunge and dive with the country's exotic marine life or visit the world famous Surfers Paradise. Immerse yourself in the luxury of Australia's tallest residential tower Q1 Resort and Spa capturing breathtaking ocean and hinterland views.


A walk under the green roof of Daintree Rainforest in Cairns

This place is perfect for a romantic dreamer. Walk hand in hand through the lush forests of the Daintree, surrounded by your thoughts and many voices of the jungle. The largest tropical rainforest on the continent, Daintree Rainforest is also a World Heritage Site. 


Visit the Remarkable Rocks at Kangaroo Island, South Australia 

Kangaroo Island, close to Adelaide is known for its wildlife and pristine beaches.

By the edge of the sea at Flinders National Park, discover the Remarkable Rocks sculpted by the wind and wild seas over hundreds of millions of years. Perfect for an evening out, or even a picnic with your loved one.

Coastal Road Trips Around Australia

Embark on a journey of a lifetime along the breathtakingly scenic, Great Ocean Road from Melbourne or the Grand Pacific Drive from Sydney. Australia has some of the world's most picturesque roads ideal for any motor-head's dream vacation, especially with the validity of the Indian driving license. With postcard perfect coastal towns and open roads, Australia has an awe-inspiring view at every turn.


Dine under the stars at Sounds of Silence at Uluru

Set against the backdrop of the majestic Uluru, one of Australia's most recognizable landmarks, Sounds of Silence promises the most romantic dining experience. Enjoy a delectable meal under the canopy of million stars with your loved one.

Take a helicopter ride over the 12 Apostles or get on the Sydney Seaplane

Experience a breathtaking flight over the most beautiful scenery in Australia. 

Take in a million dollar view of the iconic 12 Apostles along the scenic Great Ocean Road or take a sea plane ride over the spectacular Sydney harbour.

Tuesday, October 6, 2015

Canada: Put the wild in winter

From surfing the snow to ice skating, storm watching to zip-lining, ice canoeing to cool festivals, viewing the Northern Lights or experiencing an Arctic safari, Canada is the best place to be this winter.

Surf the snow: snowkiting and iceboating

Snowkiting lets you harness a power kite on skis or snowboards, to sail frozen lakes and fields at hot spots like Baie des Chaleurs & Grand Lake, New Brunswick and Lake Winnipeg, Manitoba. Not to be outdone, iceboating is a below freezing blast in Nova Scotia where folks navigate “yachts” that look like windsurfers with sleek hulls and blades.

Outdoor Skating

Many Canadian cities are perfect for ice skating au natural. In the cool climes of Edmonton, skate William Hawrelak Park’s five-hectare lake while mellow music flows from rink-side speakers; then make a side-trip to Calgary and glide along Olympic Plaza’s urban ice.

Skate away on Cameco Meewasin Skating Rink in Saskatoon; or head to Winnipeg’s Forks National Historic Site. Ottawa’s Rideau Canal offers nearly 8 km of scenic skating but don’t pass over Mount Royal Park in Montreal for a freebie skate on Beaver Lake.

Storm Watching

British Columbia’s West Coast near Tofino on Vancouver Island gets six-metre-high waves that crash the shoreline of Pacific Rim National Park Reserve during winter with such ferocity, folks travel from around the world just to witness it.

Be awed by the elements as you enjoy a beachside vista of this artful symphony of destruction.

Be a snowbird for a day: winter zip-lining

Zip-lining above treetops is good family fun. Feel like a snowbird in Newfoundland as you zip from platform to platform on a cable strung 85 metres over a plunging gorge, wind whipping as you soar above forest branches muscled with snow. Winter zip-lining is also popular in Whistler, British Columbia.

Ice canoeing on the St. Lawrence River

Join the elite canoe racers facing strong currents, ice chunks and hand-numbing waters as they paddle the icy St. Lawrence during the Québec Winter Carnival (January 29 – February 14, 2016)!

Competitors race across the river from Québec City to Levis, and back. Also enjoy raucous dogsled races, vibrant parades, luminous nightlife and the famous Ice Palace at the festival.

Cool Festivals

Join in the snowy celebrations at Edmonton’s Ice on Whyte (January 21-31, 2016) showcasing ice carvings, Winnipeg’s musical Festival du Voyageur (February 12-21, 2016) or Ottawa’s Winterlude (January 29 – February 15, 2016) which features ice skating, ice sculptures.

Nordic Skiing Gems

Edmonton exemplifies urban Nordic skiing - explore 60 km of River Valley trails, right in and around downtown. In northern Saskatchewan, Prince Albert National Park has 16 secluded ski tracks. Québec is also renowned for its cross-country skiing at Gatineau Park with 200 km of capital-region routes. Else, discover Nordic trails half-a-billion years in the making at Newfoundland’s Gros Morne National Park, a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Aurora Borealis Viewing

Head to Yellowknife where the halo of Northern Lights encircles our planet. Whitehorse is another prime-viewing locale.

Nestle up in nearby Takhini Hot Springs to watch the shimmering Aurora Borealis while you enjoy a steaming soak.

Experience the north on an Arctic safari

Arctic Kingdom Polar Expeditions offers magical adventures like visiting with polar bears; seeing legendary tusked narwhal whales, spotting seals and even the occasional walrus. Trips are rooted in local culture so you’ll meet the Inuit people of Nunavut and learn their traditions. Though it may feel like winter, safari trips run from March to October.

Say mush and make tracks

Set off on a three-day package with Call of the Wild in Ontario’s Algonquin Park. It’s one day of dog sledding, one day of snowshoeing across a frozen lake and one day of cross-country skiing on groomed forest trails.

Rest up in the comfort of a cozy wilderness eco-lodge enjoying delicious meals like white fish with cucumber dill sauce, or lemon seared chicken breasts. Me? I’ll see you in the outdoor hot tub and sauna.

Written by Lori McNulty and David Webb. Courtesy of Destination Canada. The text has been modified from the original.

Monday, October 5, 2015

Love is in the air in New Zealand

Home to glorious glacier mountains, mythical forests, shimmering lakes, secluded islands, crystal-clear rivers, miles of coastline and sparkling blue sea, New Zealand offers starry-eyed romantics a dreamy destination filled with blissful wonder. Spend time with your loved one relishing New Zealand’s many romantic hotspots. Bond with each other whilst you enjoy a host of activities such as tandem skydiving, horse-back riding, bungy jumping or relaxing in hot pools.

Go Romancing

Embark on a life of togetherness with a memorable honeymoon in New Zealand.

Located in the South Island of New Zealand, Queenstown with its stunning scenery, high-end recreational activities, and luxury accommodation is a truly romantic destination. Bond with each other as you cruise down Lake Wakatipu with the stunning backdrop of the Remarkable Mountain range towering above the crystal-clear lake.

Hire a helicopter and fly to a remote alpine location for a champagne picnic, play golf on a range of world-class courses, or charter a private yacht for fishing. The sky is the limit for an exhilarating hot air balloon flight. Float high above Lake Wakatipu, getting a bird’s-eye-view of Queenstown’s dramatic landscapes.

Enjoy the good life in Wellington, New Zealand’s capital city, famed for its lively down town cafés, shopping, nightlife, entertainment venues, and a dramatic harbour setting. The picturesque vineyards in Hawke’s Bay are a great setting for a heady romance as you partake of the local vintage wines.

Go Adventuring

New Zealand is renowned for its range of adventure activities, including bungy jumping, jetboat riding, rafting, skiing, mountain climbing and caving. One of the best sea kayaking experiences can be had on a visit to Cathedral Cove in The Coromandel Peninsula as you paddle through sea caves and explore volcanic islands. Be sure to take a dip in the cool azure waters and capture a snapshot of the iconic Te Hoho — a large pinnacle of pumice breccia rock just off the beach at Cathedral Cove.

Stay at the Bayview Chateau Tongariro Hotel, which is nestled within Whakapapa Village in the heart of the Tongariro National Park. Overlooking Mount Ruapehu, the hotel was built in 1929 and exudes timeless elegance. During winter, the entire place is covered in snow, giving a magical, winter wonderland feel.

During your stay at the hotel, head to the slopes at Whakapapa Ski Field for a skiing adventure on the soft powdery snow, or take a scenic chairlift ride to Knoll Ridge Chalet (2,020m above sea level) for a view of the area. You can also hike along the legendary Tongariro Alpine Crossing to see hot springs, ancient lava formations and crater lakes.

Go Relaxing

New Zealand is also a great destination for a relaxing vacation at any time of the year. Visit Auckland, located between two harbours and surrounded by extinct volcanoes and islands. Try your hand at fishing, as you sail out to the various fishing spots, immerse yourself in the breath-taking views of the Hauraki Gulf and relax on the deck with a glass of bubbly.

Watch the sky as it turns from crimson-streaked blue to light purple then velvety black; a twinkling brocade of glittering stars. Be romanced by candle-lit dinners or delighted by beautiful sceneries. Rejuvenate at a geothermal hot pool or settle in for a romantic escapade at one of New Zealand’s many boutique lodges where Kiwi style and service will set the tone for a unique experience.

Fall in love in New Zealand, take home unforgettable memories.

To plan your timeless holiday to New Zealand, contact Mercury Travels or visit for further details.