Looking for a winter sun break with a difference? For those in search of an alternative adventure this autumn and winter save £500pp and join sailing holiday experts Rubicon 3 for a choice of coastal and ocean voyages in sunnier climes. Setting a course south there are two-week options available to the Azores, Madeira, Morocco and the Canaries.
Given that it's the middle of summer, Christmas may be the last thing on your mind - but a little forward planning is essential to bag the very best festive breaks. With only 436 passengers, spaces are limited on the American Queen's special Christmas sailing on the Mississippi.
Follow in the wake of the mutineers of HMS Bounty on board Aranui 5, the most unique experience in the South Pacific
Next year , 230 years after the arrival of the mutineers of HMS Bounty, small passenger-freighter Aranui 5 will make a rare call on the island of Pitcairn – one of the most remote and isolated destinations in the world.
Departing from her regular schedule in The Marquesas, Aranui 5 – one of the most unique cruise experiences in the world – will make a special 13-day voyage with just 230 guests to Pitcairn Island from Tahiti on 11 April, 2020. The voyage also visits the Gambier and Austral archipelagos.
Step on board Aranui 5 – the ‘Freighter to Paradise’ – for an island-hopping adventure to the most remote shores of French Polynesia
The islands of the South Pacific conjure up images of adventure and mystery, unspoilt beauty and wild shores that are intoxicating and inspiring in equal measure. None more so than the enchanting Marquesas Islands of French Polynesia, and there is no better way to reach them than on board the passenger-freighter Aranui 5 – one of the most original and unforgettable voyages in the world.
Located in the Pacific Ocean, 900 miles from Tahiti, the Marquesas are so remote that Aranui 5 is, in fact, their lifeline. A working cargo ship, Aranui 5 delivers supplies to the six inhabited islands of the archipelago, while also hosting up to 230 guests on her 2500-mile adventure through the islands.
Late Deal: Save up to £570 as a savvy solo traveller with Ramblers Walking Holidays’ twin share options
Ramblers Walking Holidays is offering sociable and savvy solo travellers the opportunity to twin share on its holidays and save up to £570 by choosing to share a room. Easy to organise with Ramblers Walking Holidays, they can twin up same sex solos on set departures with options listed on-line at https://www.ramblersholidays.co.uk/solo-travellers-twin-share.
There’s a great selection of winter sun options including the wilds of Costa Rica and the ultimate hiking high in the Himalayas.
With its graceful antebellum homes and oak trees dripping in Spanish moss, few places in America are as dreamy as the Deep South. This corner of the country gave us such legendary love stories as Gone With The Wind, so there's nowhere better to inspire your belle or beau with a Valentine's break. Among the most romantic city-break spots are Savannah, New Orleans and Charleston - but why choose one when a new itinerary from Bon Voyage combines all three? The tailor-made Three Southern Belles multi-centre (new for 2019) takes in cobblestone streets, horse-drawn carriages and all the other regional highlights - and better still, it's completely car-free, so there's no need to argue about who's driving.
Located in the Mallorcan mountain retreat of Soller, the chic, 12- bedroom, adult only Hotel L’Avenida has recently been bought by Mallorquin hoteliers, the Balaguer family.
Under this new ownership, the hotel, which mixes its original 19th century Modernist’ style architecture with a modern twist, has begun the first phase of a complete renovation to the property.
USA pips Italy to the top spot in Titan Travel’s first ever Travel Trends report for the escorted tours and cruise market
Pipping Italy to the top spot the USA takes pole position in Titan Travel’s (www.titantravel.co.uk, 0800 988 5873), first ever travel trends report focusing purely on the growing escorted tours and cruise holiday market.
With over 40 years’ experience in this holiday sector, Titan has leveraged its heritage and expertise to analyse the results of its 429 tours and cruises. It has consulted with its expert product team, as well as media and industry insiders, and taken an up-close look at the state of the market in 2019, and beyond, to consider where its customers are going and what appear to be the key trends in their decision-making process*.
For 40 years Titan Travel (0800 988 5873; titantravel.co.uk) have been taking like-minded travellers on escorted holidays to inspirational parts of the world. With a new look and feel the 2019 Worldwide brochure is no exception offering more than 210 expertly designed tours and cruises including 23 brand new itineraries. Options include a first-time tour of little-known Armenia and Georgia, a new tour of wildlife rich Borneo, a new gourmet tasting holiday in Switzerland and an artist exploration of Verona.
Titan Travel MD Andy Squirrell commented “When we began in 1978, it was with a desire to create extraordinary travel experiences. And 40 years later, that’s still what we’re all about. On our holidays, you can do everything from marvelling at mountains in New Zealand and seeking out the Big Five in Tanzania, to sailing the scenic waters of the Rhine. But what makes these holidays so special is the fact that all these experiences - these ‘perfect moments’ - are shared with others and it’s the social aspect of a Titan holiday that feedback with clients has told us is the one aspect they enjoy the most.”
Guaranteed departures on every date
Following customer feedback, Titan is now guaranteeing departures on every departure date – so if a tour has three or 30 people travelling, it’s always guaranteed to depart. As customers love the sociable aspect of a holiday, if a tour has fewer people booked than expected, customers will be called in advance to give them the option to switch to an alternative date - refunding the difference if the new date is a lower price. Adjustments may be made to the itinerary to suit a smaller group - or there’s the option to cancel and receive a full refund.
Range of holidays
With itineraries covering all seven continents, the brochure features a range of different types of holidays (with more available at www.titantravel.co.uk). Options include Titan’s ‘classic’ escorted tours in the company of an expert tour manager; ocean cruises and coastal cruises from Antarctica to Zadar; laid-back river cruises along scenic waterways, including sailings on two ‘exclusive-to-Titan’ ships; a series of iconic rail adventures include the Rocky Mountaineer in Canada and Venice Simplon-Orient-Express. For those looking to get away over Christmas and New Year a series of festive getaways range from Christmas market cruises to winter-sun escapes. Staying put in one location is a further option with a ‘Stay & Explore’ holiday and closer to home, from Scotland to the south east, there are great value UK Short Breaks. For those on a budget, Titan’s ‘Essential Collection’ has fewer inclusions, such as the door-to-door transfer service, though maintains the same exceptional quality at a great price.
Most Titan’s tours are accompanied by a tour manager, who are all personally selected to ensure they are among the best in the business. They are there to ensure everything runs smoothly and safely but also to help customers get the most out of their time away.
VIP door to door travel service and more flexible regional departures
Taking the stress out of getting to the airport, Titan’s pioneering VIP door-to-door transfer service, means that every customer can be picked up from their front door wherever they live in the UK*. From Aberdeen and Belfast airport to Southend and Southampton, customers can fly internationally to join more than 60 tours and then receive a complimentary transfer between the destination airport and the hotel or ship on the first and last day of the holiday.
Double the number of solo departures
For 2019 Titan has doubled the number of dedicated solo tours reserved exclusively for those travelling by themselves. A tour manager is on hand from the welcome drinks reception throughout the tour to make sure everyone in the group gets the best out of the holiday. Adding to far-flung long-haul destinations such as China, Sri Lanka, Uzbekistan and Vietnam are a selection of European countries from Italy and Switzerland to Portugal, Greece and Germany. Prices start from £1,299 for the 8-day Scenic Lake Orta (departing 25th April 2019).
Alternatively, for solo travellers who would rather travel on one of Titan’s other holidays, lots of them carry no and low single supplements.
Expanded number of New ‘Trailblazer’ Tours exclusively for Titan Travellers Club members
For customers who have previously travelled with Titan a new loyalty programme, Titan Travellers Club, has launched with members benefitting from special offers and advanced previews of new tours. In addition, they qualify to book any of Titan’s nine new, great-value ‘Trailblazer’ tours. As pioneers on the first departures of each tour members can experience the brand new itineraries and provide first-hand feedback to Titan’s product teams.
Highlights of Cambodia and Laos - departs 27 November 2018 (from £1,999pp) on the new 13-day tour of Cambodia and Laos, which combines breath-taking temples and bustling local markets with a cooking lesson and a cruise on Tonlé Sap Lake.
Armenia and Georgia - The brand new 12-day tour of Armenia and Georgia has a Trailblazer tour departing 21 March 2019 (from £1,599 pp). Both countries have been forging their own identities following the era of the Soviet Union, making this a fascinating time to explore these countries as they transition. Armenia was the first country to adopt Christianity as a state religion back in AD 301 and has some of the earliest churches. Georgia is known for being one of the first wine-producing countries, and still makes wine the traditional way today. The tour includes several cooking masterclasses with local chefs to learn about the cuisine, spends time with local families, samples the wines and journeys into the beautiful wilderness of the Caucasus Mountains.
Wild Borneo - Further afield Trailblazers can spy orang-utans and proboscis monkeys swinging through the trees and see pygmy elephants during a remote Kinabatangan river cruise on the first departure of the new 13-day tour of Borneo. Departing 18 March 2019 from £2,499 pp the adventure across rivers and rainforests seeking out the cultures that have influenced two of the island’s cities - Kota Kinabalu and Sandakan. Staying in a five-star beachfront hotel within a nature reserve. Explore gardens of exotic flowers, climb into ancient tree canopies and discover how centres are caring for the orang-utan and the world’s smallest bear. Please note this departure date is not viewable online.
Taste of Switzerland – On the new 8-day Taste of Switzerland tour Trailblazers will be tasting Swiss cheese and having a fondue cooking lesson at the Fondue Academy in Gruyères; try a chocolate tasting at Maison Cailler and sample cool crisp wines at the Vine and Wine Museum at Aigle Castle. Any excess can be walked off in the mountain peaks on the world’s first suspension bridge, whilst staying in the luxury of the Royal Savoy lakeside hotel in Lausanne and the mountain town Villars-sur-Ollon. The Trailblazer tour departs departing 18 July 2019 from £1,549pp with a second departure in September 2019.
America’s Historic Cities – Travelling from New York to Atlanta this new 14-day tour of America’s Historic Cities, including Savannah and Charleston and takes Trailblazers from the moss-draped oak trees of Savannah to the modern metropolis of New York City, with a backstage tour of CNN; collecting pieces of America’s history at each stop along the way. The Trailblazer tour costs from £2,499 departing 23 May 2019 with a second departure in August 2019.
Experience rich tours
In addition to the Trailblazers, Titan has more experience enhanced tours for 2019 such as the 5-day Art of Verona ‘Stay & Explore’ itinerary in medieval Verona. Departing in July and August 2019 from £1,249 pp, there’s that chance to sample red wine in Valpolicella, and watch a performance of ‘Romeo & Juliet’ in the old streets and squares of Verona, where it was originally set. The tour is also timed to take in an open-air performance in the Arena di Verona as well as with free time to explore.
For rail travel lovers the new 19-day tour of Ancient China and the Palace of the Gods includes a journey on the Lhasa Express, the world’s highest passenger railroad for an unforgettable rail experience with 80% taking place at an altitude of over 3,900m. It is an engineering wonder and spans the most incredible scenery. Departing 26 April 2019 from £3,849 pp this small group tour (max 24 people) covers some of China and Tibet’s must-see sights including Tian’anmen Square, the Great Wall, the Terracotta Warriors and Shanghai, whilst also venturing off track into Yunnan Province to meet the Bai and Naxi people for a look into ethnic lifestyles untouched by modern life.
Expanded river cruise options for 2019
In addition to land-based tours the new Worldwide brochure features a series of ocean and river cruises including 24 itineraries on Titan’s exclusively chartered river cruise vessels MS Serenade 1 and MS Bellejour.
Following the success of Titan’s exclusive charter of MS Serenade 1 (which began in March 2017), new for 2019 Titan has expanded its river cruise programme with the addition of the 4 star+, 180-passenger MS Bellejour to offer a series of cruises on the Danube.
For a Spring escape at the start of the 2019 season MS Bellejour will offer a 6-day no-fly cruise of the Dutch Waterways and Tulips (departing 1 April and 18 April 2019 from £699 pp). Taking in the sights of the Netherlands along the Dutch Waterways highlights including a visit to the world famous Keukenhof Gardens and a cruise along Amsterdam’s ribbon of 17thcentury canals.
MS Bellejour will then transfer to the Danube for the rest of the season to offer a choice of itineraries including the 13-day Voyage to the Black Sea (departing 7 July, 9 or 25 September 2019 from £2,199 pp). Perfect for those who want to explore off the beaten track this is the chance to sail the lesser known stretch of the Danube, visiting five different countries and the cities of Budapest, Belgrade, Bucharest and Constanta as well as a daylight cruise through the natural wonder of the Iron Gates gorge.
For the 2019 season MS Serenade 1 will offer dedicated departures along the Rhine with a particular highlight for art lovers being the 8-day In The Footsteps of Turner itinerary (departing 22 August 2019 from £1,549pp). Featuring four special talks by expert art historian Gerald Deslandes, the cruise celebrates the famous painter’s fascination with the Middle Rhine, exploring the region’s medieval fortresses and fairy-tale castles, picturesque villages and magnificent cities. And in contrast to the artist himself, who lost his entire luggage, Titan will escort travellers in comfort and convenience.
All tours and cruises include flights, accommodation, transfers, excursions, the services of a Titan tour manager and the VIP door-to-door travel service.
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*In the Scottish Islands and Sark where vehicle access is restricted, we invite guests to nominate a mainland address for their pick-up.
Notes to editors
Titan’s new Worldwide brochure includes 211 tours and cruises, with every departure guaranteed, and their full product range visiting almost 100 countries and every continent.
Titan holidays are only on sale in the UK and Republic of Ireland and are all UK originating enabling them to be carefully and imaginatively crafted for the British holidaymaker.
Titan’s Price Promise means that customers will always be guaranteed the best price. After a booking has been made, no additional fees or surcharges will be added. If Titan reduces the price of the holiday, a refund will be made – in cash.
Titan offers award-winning VIP door to door transfers on every itinerary and every departure date with no mileage supplements, as well as flights from local airport and free connecting flights to London.
Titan works with experienced tour managers and all hotels are accorded an honest ‘T’ rating. Tours feature schedule flights with world-renowned operators and excursions are included to attractions which are clearly highlights of a chosen region or country.
Whatley Manor Hotel & Spa the Cotswolds gastronomic getaway (www.whatleymanor.com; 01666 822 888) has got together with the iconic Beaufort Polo Club at nearby Tetbury, to offer guests the chance to stay at the hotel and enjoy a hands on Polo Experience at the club.
Located in the beautiful countryside near Malmesbury, Whatley Manor is a lovingly restored 19th century Grade II listed manor house, which was originally built as a lodge on the Beaufort Estate. It’s now a hotel with 23 bedrooms and set in 12 acres of English country gardens and is ideally situated for a visit to Beaufort Polo Club.