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Vanuatu: Ambae volcano has no effect on tourists 

Vanuatu Tourism Office and Air Vanuatu says that international tourism is unlikely to be effected by the volcanic activity on Ambae Island.

In a statement NF says: ‘Whilst not wishing to make light of the situation in Ambae, currently approximately 8000 people have been evacuated
from the eastern side of the island as volcanic ash is contaminating the water supplies.

‘The alert is on a relatively confined basis and this is not currently affecting air services either to Ambae itself or the rest of the Air Vanuatu network.’

VTO’s new Zealand rep Jacquie Carson says Ambae is a small island in the Penma Province, not highly visited

by tourists. ‘The situation on Ambae is not impacting other more populated and tourist focussed destinations. Tanna volcano remains accessible to visitors and its operations have not been affected.’ 

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Thanks to an objectively sweet promotion from the J.W. Marriott Desert Springs Resort & Spa in Palm Dessert, Calif., guests can now have a whopping 10-pound pink doughnut delivered straight to their door. As the main event of the hotel’s new $219 “Donut Disturb” package, the hefty treat, which measures three feet wide by a foot high, will be wheeled straight to the room with a side of milkshakes when guests are ready for a serious sugar high.

While the lines are fine as to whether the confection is a technically a donut or a cake, FoodBeast reports that the layers of Tahitian vanilla cake, cream, and raspberry jelly smothered with pink cream frosting, macaron crisps and sprinkles classify it as "Homer Simpson's version of heaven."

Included with the purchase of the Donut Disturb package, guests also receive a $50 hotel credit for the spa, dining, or golfing — though it would likely prove difficult to get up from the couch, let alone golf, after chowing down on the doughnut.

Source: Fox News

Image: J.W. Marriott Desert Springs Resort & Spa


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A major, long-term project for The Islands of Tahiti became a reality with the official recognition of the Taputapuatea marae, a highly sacred site on the island of Raiatea, as a UNESCO World Heritage site.

This important recognition not only highlights a level of cultural significance present in the destination, but stimulates a source of great pride for the Polynesian people, bringing with it an opportunity for tourism to leverage the visibility of The Islands of Tahiti.

The Islands of Tahiti are a unique and colourful destination. Now with The World Heritage label bestowed upon the Taputapuatea marae, this global accolade will aid in attracting visitors in search of history and a rich cultural experience.

Located on the beautiful island of Raiatea, the second largest economic centre in The Islands of Tahiti, the marae is an ancient sacred site where ancient ceremonies took place prior to the arrival of European missionaries.

Its preservation, whilst a symbol of ancient Polynesian culture, also showcases the importance of mana, a source of great power and spiritual strength present in the surrounding nature. Notably, The Taputapuatea marae is the first cultural site in a French overseas region to be recognised by UNESCO.

With a string of activities dotted throughout the island, Raiatea makes a highly attractive island for visitors in search of thrill and adventure. Hiking trails in the island's lush tropical interior take visitors to Mount Tapioi and Mount Temehani. Sea lovers can also sail the open ocean to the nearby islands of Huahine and Bora Bora, as well as to the neighbouring lagoons of its sister island Taha'a, an area defined by its production of vanilla.

With its combination of rugged coastline and mountainous landscapes, Raiatea creates a diverse region with picturesque beaches and beautiful hiking trails. There are also many scuba diving sites, including the Nordby, a wreck lying 95 feet under the surface.

With this prestigious UNESCO cultural label, Tahiti Tourisme can position the destination, highlighting the wealth of Polynesian culture and the diversity of activities as a sustainable tourism hub. The classification of the Taputapuatea marae as a UNESCO World Heritage site provides the Polynesian people with new, unifying opportunity to share their traditions, and ancient heritage to the wider world.

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Train-Suite Shiki-Shima train, Japan:

Luxury train by Ferrari, Maserati designer

Japan has long had a love affair with its trains – and what's not to love about a system of fast commuter trains that run with such precision, 20-second delays are cause for apology? Now, though, Japan has a train to swoon over.

The Train-Suite Shiki-Shima, operated by East Japan Railway Company, is one of the world's most exclusive – and expensive trains. It hosts only 34 passengers at a time at a cost of from ¥740,000 ($9011) a night, a person, twin share.

Industrial designer Ken Kiyoyuki Okuyama, with design projects for Ferrari and Maserati on his impressive CV, lent his refined aesthetic to the 10-car sleeper, referencing Japanese tradition, culture and the golden age of travel.

The champagne-gold exterior is something to behold, as many a Japanese trainspotter has already done. The Shiki-Shima has become a well-photographed celebrity as she rolls across the northern Tohoku region and Hokkaido, on one-to three-night itineraries.

What's so special? Well, suites, for instance, variously include a working fireplace, a cypress wood bath, a loft, and for those who know and love the Rocky Mountaineer's domed observation deck, the corresponding Shiki-Shima cars are next level, with a futuristic white look and glass panels providing virtually floor-to-floor panoramas.

Katsuhiro Nakamura, Japan's first Michelin-starred chef, has devised the menus that include dishes which reflect specific locations along the journey and are served accordingly in a glamorous, chandelier-festooned dining room.

The Komorebi lounge is designed so the walls and windows reflect the organic forms and light of the countryside and even the music has been specifically designed for the experience by an award-winning film composer, Naoki Sato, and service is, of course, gracious and attentive.

The champagne-gold exterior is something to behold, as many a Japanese trainspotter has already done. The Shiki-Shima has become a well-photographed celebrity as she rolls across the northern Tohoku region and Hokkaido, on one- to three-night itineraries.

Currently booked out till mid-2018, you can "apply" via a ballot system.


Source: Stuff NZ


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Venture Travel have been awarded Top Shop for Air New Zealand at the GTN Conference over this past weekend!!!

Read more about Venture Travel and the team here: https://mondotravel.co.nz/store and selecting ALBANY.

Venture Travel beat out all the other Mondo and GTN offices to take out the top accolade from Air New Zealand.

A wonderful performance and everyone at Mondo is delighted with Kim, and her team’s, success.

Pictured: Patricia Xu (Air NZ), Kim Herd (Venture Travel) and Stuart Long (Air NZ)

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Mondo Travel is involved in supporting Heroworx as they pull together their inaugual fishing tournament ("Busted and Bruised") in Rarotonga to raise funds to help pay for a covered bay for Puaikura Volunteer Fire Brigade in Arorangi, Rarotonga. Mondo are keen to see Peter raise the much needed $6,000 target!

Find out more about Heroworx HERE

Read the coverage HERE

Get details of the trip HERE ... come on and join Jo Holley on this fantastic trip that will be fun, fun, fun ... and do a whole lot of good!



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We've just heard the great wews from Cruise Whitsundays Hardy Reef!

Images taken 14 June on their Great Barrier Reef Adventure show that, if you look closely, you can see the coral is growing with new buds forming on the branching coral!  

The coral is still looking colourful and the marine life are abundant.

Image: Reef Safari Diving & Photography


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When it's in the Swiss Alps ... has no roof ... has no walls ... has no staff!

See for yourself: http://www.myswitzerland.com/en-us/null-sterne-hotel.html


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Congratulations to Mondo Travel Mt Eden, who have been nominated in the Albert-Eden Business Awards.

Why Mondo ... and why Mt Eden?

  • Their number one focus is on their clients; quality of service is paramount.
  • The primary objectives, and a key area of their success is the fact they endeavor to respond to email and Internet inquiries within two hours of receiving them.
  • Their mantra is to prioritise new inquiries as a preference to other tasks.
  • They respond to existing business in a timely manner.

In their words: "Our clients are our livelihood, we treat them like friends and look after their every travel need like it were our own..."

If you've had the pleasure of dealing with Mt Eden, they'd be honoured if you would vote for them.

Voting is now live - go to www.albertedenbusinessawards.co.nz to vote. 

Each person may only vote once. You may vote for as many categories as you like but only once in each category.

Voting closes 5 May

Thank you for your support!


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Brenda Ogilvie of Mondo Travel Christchurch is proud to be the exclusive Travel Provider for the Canterbury Caledonian Society Pipe Band - the current 6 time NZ Champion Band.

Each year the band raises funds holding a Scottish Golf Day ... which is not your normal day on a golf course.  Bagpipes, whisky, haggis, and of course golfers playing in kilts ... and all at the prestigious Clearwater Golf Club, Christchurch. 

Check it out - play in it once and you'll be back every year (it's always a sell out!)

Contact Brenda for more information.

Brenda Ogilvie - International Travel Broker

Mobile NZ: +64 210503838 / Mobile AU: +61 (0)455451597

Email : brenda.ogilvie@mondotravel.co.nz


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Mondo Travel and Fiji Airways, in conjunction with the Bealey’s Speight’s Ale House, are supporting the New Zealand Spinal Trust.

All proceeds from the promotion will go to the Trust – the winners get to fly to the Crusaders v Chiefs game in Suva on 19 May.

You can support this effort, too ... simply by purchasing one of the 600 raffle tickets! Everyt ticket sold has TWO chances to win!

First prize: A trip for two to watch the Chiefs versus Crusaders ... in FIJI!

Tickets are only $20 each, and they are available from NZ Spinal Trust at Portacom B, Burwood Hospital (Ph 383 6881) or at The Bealey’s Speight’s Ale House bar (263 Bealey Ave, Christchurch) or by email: anna@oms9.co.nz


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Mondo Travel has continued its association with the Tasman Makos by committing to the “Makos 500 Club” in 2017.

The Makos 500 Club was introduced in 2014 when the team was promoted to the Premiership division of the Mitre 10 Cup. The membership monies are earmarked for the team support staff expenses. The Makos 500 Club has enabled the appointment of the very best coaching team, physio, doctor and strength & conditioning coach possible. The 2016 coaching team of Leon MacDonald & Andrew Goodman has been enhanced, in 2017, with the appointment of Leo Crowley & Greg Somerville as assistant coaches.

Since joining the Premiership, the Makos have achieved significant success – 2 x Runner-up and 1 x 3rd placing – a tremendous result for one of the newest, and smallest, unions in the country.

Like the many businesses and individuals in the Nelson/Marlborough region (and supporters throughout the country), Mondo are "delighted to be contributing to the success of the Tasman Makos (through the Makos 500 Club) in 2017,“ said Mondo Travel Chief Executive, Tony Terrill.


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At Mondo Travel, we don't just plan trips ... we go the distance to ensure your journey becomes a treasured memory!

Our travel specialists do their utmost to make every itinerary they work on one that will have you talking about your trip long after the bags have been unpacked at home. We're all about making memories and ensuring that we show you a new way of seeing the world!

Recently, Chris Hammonds at our Mt Eden store booked a Southern African trip for Ed and Jen. This is what they had to say on their return:

Just a note to thank you for all you did to make our South African trip truly memorable. We loved it ... from Table mountain to Stellenbosch to Victoria Falls; and the the animals at the two game parks at Kruger were outstanding. Your itinery was well thought out and we enjoyed every minute. Great! Best wishes

Talk to one of our travel specialists about making YOUR next memory anything but ordinary!


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Nothing to do with Hollywood (although Air New Zealand can get you there, too!), Oscar is their new virtual travel assistant.

His full name is Bravo Oscar Tango, or BOT, and he will initially be helping Air New Zealand customers with their most commonly asked questions, saving them from going through the often lengthy FAQ's. He's a chat bot, meaning he will be able to assist you via voice or text commands pertaining to any Air New Zealand lounge enquiries, baggage queries or Airpoints questions.

He is currently in Beta, and your experience with Oscar will help define his future by providing the training he needs.

Go on ... put Oscar to the test : https://www.airnewzealand.co.nz/help-and-contact




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