TAILORS OF HOLIDAYS
There is nothing quite like dressing in bespoke. The comfort that comes from a perfect fit and the quiet confidence you gain from knowing that there is nobody in the room better dressed. At Quotient TravelPlanner, we think of ourselves as tailors of holidays – patterns are like your holiday theme, buttons represent the pace of your trip, while flowing or racy hemlines reflect the style and sensuality of your vacation.
As with a tailor, the process starts with a detailed consultation with one of our travel consultants. Each possesses specific knowledge on different parts of the world and various styles of travel. Collectively, we cover most of the world from luxury travel to adventure travel. In creating bespoke itineraries, consultants work together to come up with ideas and perspectives that will appeal to the particular client. This could be through creating convenience for specific needs clients such as vegans and elderly travellers, or simply creating a wow factor.
GETTING TO KNOW YOU
The consultation will yield information such as countries you have covered or would like to visit again in greater depth, interests and dislikes perhaps a fascination with Mahler or a distaste in Miro, gourmet food of any kind or absolutely no history lessons about this or that castle, temperature preferences, whether you prefer staying in vast neo-classical palace hotels or funky boutiques, dietary or mobility requirements, special skills such as shooting, riding or skiing.
EXPERT TRAVEL ADVICE
We make suggestions to create a seamless holiday. If there are political problems brewing in Naples, we advise you stay north of Rome instead. If you prefer to shop than sightsee in Paris, we help you prioritise your time and destinations. If you like the idea of safari, but think South Africa is too clichéd, we can suggest alternative luxurious and safe safaris. And if you would like a truly exclusive experience, we will be happy to suggest it and arrange it. Whether it is filming your own music video in the Beijing Summer Palace, sailing with friends on a superyacht to the Billionaire Club, we will be happy to oblige.
MANAGING YOUR EXPECTATIONS AND BUDGETS
Our clients range from primary school teachers on a honeymoon to industrialists on a family sabbatical, with all of our tailor-made holidays benefitting from equal attention. We discover your expectations for your custom holiday while managing your budget to fully maximise your money.. Expect personalised attention for everything from transport to guides, waking up late is always an option and there is no waiting around for others to turn up. Our Travel Pack, issued to every travelling group, features dining guides with average prices indicated so that you can manage your spending as well.
USING YOUR FREQUENT FLYER OR HOTEL MEMBERSHIPS
We also add travel components to what you already have. You may have a frequent flier programme that we can route your flights to suit, a villa in Tuscany that we can include as part of a holiday, a timeshare or corporate hotel discount anywhere in the world, or an extension to a business trip. We can fly the rest of your family to join you and ensure that a reliable and safe chauffeur brings them to your door.
FULL RANGE OF TRAVEL SERVICES
Just as in a good suit, there are invisible elements between the layers to create the perfect fit. Because we are a bespoke travel agency, we will route your flights to suit your frequent flier programme or land you at the location closest to your destination which may not be in the same country. We manage this with the range of cars and train lines available to the airport, cost effective flights, and transport links out of the airport which are not jammed. If your family doesn’t travel light, we select estate cars or 4x4s which we know have the luggage capacity to cope with the loads. Hotels are chosen for their value for money, design suitability to your liking, attention to maintenance, proximity to transport links, attractions and amenities, parking availability, air conditioning and even the quality of breakfast.
EVERY HOLIDAY IS DIFFERENT, DESIGNED TO SUIT YOUR STYLE
Your personalised holiday is planned to maximise the sights and experiences you want, in the style you want. This usually means that every holiday we have ever customised has been different. We take on a educating role to introduce new ideas and lifestyles to our travellers at every opportunity, but we try to be sensitive about limits. We won’t send vegans to a pig farm producing the finest corn fed pork, but we do try to convince French wine devotees to try a Barolo, and dyed-in-the-rayon metropolites to try a taste of luxury country life for a day or two. The possibilities for your tailor-made holiday are only limited by your imagination!
... AND EVERYTHING IS BOOKED FOR YOUR TRIP!
To tailor-make your next holiday, simply speak to any of our travel consultants at +65 6435 0922, alternatively you can email us at email@example.com. We’ll be more than happy to answer any queries you might have.
Set up in 2007, Quotient TravelPlanner is a bespoke travel agency born out of passion for travel. From the beginning, our philosophy was simple: craft meaningful holidays that offer discerning travellers a real sense of freedom, discovery and understanding of the world. Almost a decade later, we remain loyal to the same principles, dedicating ourselves to building your dream holiday -- one that matches your unique personality and travel style.The Quotient TravelPlanner difference is the holiday we offer to you, our valued customer, whom we envision a long-lasting relationship with. It’s the unique tailor-made travel itinerary based on your interests and desires; it’s the inspiring journey filled with authentic experiences we want you to cherish a lifetime; it's the type of personalised service and fine touches that will elevate your trip into a real luxury travel experience.
Our philosophy is simple: craft meaningful holidays that offer discerning travellers the freedom and scope of discovery they desire.At the heart is every holiday is, what really matters to you – the solo traveller, honeymoon couple, family with children or group of friends, even the company seeking a meaningful incentive trip to reward and retain your talent.Bespoke, well-planned travel itineraries can be crafted for anyone, and can be geared to maximise any travel style, whether free and easy or private tour, a rail journey or self-drive adventure.Are you a lover of wildlife? An urbanite? A die-hard gourmand? Can’t get enough of cultural and historical sites? Spare yourself the time and headache (and possibly heartache) of planning your own trip and leave the nitty gritty to passionate, seasoned travellers! We listen to you and work with you to fashion your ideal holiday to suit your travelling profile.[gallery ids="9633,9632,9615,9617,9622,9610,9614,9623,9619,9618,9649,9616,9629,9630,9631,9634,9635,9636"]We recognise that flexibility is extremely important for you; just as there are some travellers who wish to follow an itinerary, there will be others who derive pleasure from spontaneous exploration or seeking out off-the-beaten-track moments.When you select us as your travel planner, you are placing your happiness in the hands of a pioneer of customised travel in Singapore; you are choosing a Virtuoso Member – one of just five Specialists in the Art of Travel in Asia – and gatekeeper of sought-after hotel privileges such as VIP treatment, complimentary room upgrades and special amenities.Most importantly, you are signalling your intention to push your travel experiences beyond the realms of the ordinary.Let your feet wander. But before that, the mind.
Our brand new portal retains all the great old stuff from our old site, such as the ability to select your accommodation style, pre-pay for optional activities and extend nights in the city of your choice, but is now even easier to confirm and book. Some of our itineraries also have a *new* live accommodation availability feature, which allows you to choose your exact hotel and room and confirm it on the spot.Simply search through our online store for a holiday based on destination, travel style or trip duration, tweak it to suit your individual preferences, and proceed to pay. It's that simple!
- Switzerland gives you much-needed peace of mind when you travel there on a family holiday. Add in the simply unbeatable views and the array of activities available to keep both young and old entertained and you know you've got the makings of a great trip!See also 5 Amazing Experiences for the Family to Have a Magical Time 5 Family-friendly Resorts for Ski Holidays in Japan 5 Glamping Options Perfect for the FamilyEmbrace these top family experiences Switzerland has to offer that'll be difficult to find elsewhere in the world. You'll be able to get a deeper insight into Switzerland's culture and landmarks all whilst having a ball of a time with your loved ones!
Go llama trekkingIf you have a soft spot for adorable llamas, this activity is perfect for you. Your children will be able to ride atop the fluffy animals whilst you lead your own llamas and hike your way through meadows and pastures in the picture-perfect landscape. You'll not only get to bond with your llama but will also get to learn about the different indigenous plants and animals living in the area. The sturdy llamas will help you transport your luggage so you can even opt to stay overnight at a farm and spend more time with the animals at the end of your trek.
Summit the highest railway station in EuropeFeel on top of the world when you board the Jungfrau Railway on an exciting journey to Jungfraujoch, Europe's highest railway station. Upon arrival, venture into a pristine ice palace filled with mesmerising sculptures carved out of ice and embark on a 45-minute trail that will lead you to the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Jungfrau-Aletsch. Then, take a lift to an observatory where you'll be able to gaze at the mysterious Sphinx rock formation. The journey to Jungfraujoch is recommended for older children as the atmosphere can get pretty chilly!
Experience Swiss rural lifeTransport back to the past when you visit Switzerland's only open-air museum, Ballenberg. The attraction not only offers rare insight into how life in the country was like in the past but also gives city-dwellers the chance to experience an authentic rural lifestyle. Wander amongst over a 100 reconstructed 14th- to 19th-century buildings that vary from Wooden Alpine huts to farmsteads and learn skills such as bread baking, basket weaving and pottery from craftsmen dressed in period costumes. A buggy led by horses will be your mode of transport around the sprawling premises, which are also home to over 250 native farm animals including geese, rabbits and sheep; your young ones will surely delight at interacting with these tame animals at the petting farm!
Play the traditional AlphornKnown as a legendary Swiss instrument, the remarkable Alphorn startles everyone who lays eyes on it for the first time. Historically used by mountaineers as signal instruments, the meters-long wooden horns can be tricky to grasp at first try. Thankfully, professionals will be on hand to guide you on how to produce sounds and melodies when you attend a personal coaching session. Who knows, you may even succeed in playing a simple song by the end of your class.
Delight the family with a chocolate-making class! Photo by Funky Chocolate Club Switzerland.
Learn how to make Swiss chocolateA visit to Switzerland wouldn't be complete without a taste of Swiss chocolate, widely regarded as some of the smoothest cacao delights in the world. Embrace your love for the sweet confectionery and take the fun factor up a notch when you sign your family up for a Swiss chocolate-making workshop. Your class begins with an all-you-can-eat tasting session of a variety of chocolate and once you've had your fill, you'll then move on to learn how to temper the chocolate properly and decorate your creation as you wish. A tasty and memorable souvenir? Sounds just like our cup of tea!
Marta Cardoso grew up at her grandpa's farm where she swam in cold-water tanks and ate oranges plucked straight off the trees. It was there that she developed a love of nature and the outdoors, a love that only grew further during her childhood years where she spent nearly all her weekends at her parent's country house picking fruits and herbs as they strolled through mountains and fields together.See also A Short Interlude in Lisbon 5 Breathtaking Natural Sites with Limited Visitor Access Quick Mountain Hikes in Asia-Pacific to Rejuvenate YourselfHaving carried that passion for environmental sustainability through the years, Cardoso oversaw the opening of Six Senses Douro Valley's Earth Lab in 2017 as the property's Sustainability Manager. Blazing ahead of the trail, the property has also recently claimed the esteemed Virtuoso Sustainable Tourism Leadership Award, making 2018 another milestone year for Cardoso and her team.Riding on this high, Quotient caught up with Cardoso in a recent interview to delve deeper into her thoughts on environmental sustainability.Quotient: What exactly does a Sustainability Manager do? Cardoso: My main responsibilities are budget monitoring and planning, developing new strategic partnerships, measuring, quantifying and analysing sustainability Key Performance Indicators, managing projects, engaging hosts and guests in sustainability initiatives and managing the expenditure of our Sustainability Fund.Where are some of your favourite nature destinations? I love climbing mountains and I feel that the activity has taught me many things such as patience, persistence and gratitude to name a few. Whenever I can, I also gather a group of friends and we hit the road to visit Europe’s most spectacular wilderness regions; the Picos da Europa National Park is my favourite! Being in close proximity to nature drives me to do what I can to help protect and preserve these places.How do you feel about your recent win at the Virtuoso Sustainable Tourism Leadership Awards? Personally, I could not be prouder about winning the Virtuoso Sustainable Tourism Leadership Award. In a competition involving over 160 of the world’s best hotels known for their leadership in sustainability, we won and that makes us very proud.The honest truth, however, is that any one of our sister properties could have just as easily won this award as there is so much great work going on all round the world. As a group, some of the unique initiatives we have adopted are filtering and bottling our own Six Senses water, developing the Earth Lab, which is a place that is 100% dedicated to sustainability and having a Vice President of Sustainability sitting firmly on the Executive Committee.How has Six Senses Douro Valley committed itself to sustainable living? At Six Senses Douro Valley, sustainability is visible in all aspects of our design and approach. Whether it be how our land is used to grow food, our management of energy and waste, our efforts to conserve water and source local and seasonal ingredients for the resort’s menus, or the promise we make to our local community to employ hosts from the valley, our commitment to sustainability guides all of our actions.What are some of the unique sustainability initiatives that Six Senses Douro Valley has adopted? All the artwork and much of the furniture in our property is made from upcycled materials and recycled industrial antiques such as old farm utensils, tiles from broken panels, barrels and more, giving the hotel a tremendous sense of place and connection with the land and its traditions. The enormous variety of seeds that we now have in our organic seed bank, which now number more than 200, also help to protect biodiversity in the region. The Forest Restoration project is probably our single largest long-term project and is a true labour of love. We have a 5-hectare park of old trees that had been abandoned for over 50 years that we are now slowly nursing back to health. Soil fertility is returning and the park is turning into a healthy home for fungi, insects and birds.What are some of the plans you have for Earth Lab Douro Valley moving forward? We currently harvest twice a week to meet the needs of our restaurants, bars and spa. For 2019, we have pledged to increase our food production by 100% so that our ultimate goal of self-sufficiency is within our sights. We will be looking to produce our own vegetables, edible flowers, herbs and fruits and adding chickens for eggs and goats for milk and cheese. Our apiary has also started to produce honey and will be further expanded over the coming years.What is a common misconception people have about environmental sustainability? That organic and sustainable food habits must be more expensive than buying processed foods. We demystify this by holding twice-weekly workshops on food preservation.During the one and a half hour class, guests will learn how to pickle the organic produce from our garden, how to produce yoghurt without using electricity with a natural pro-biotic and how to dehydrate herbs to make tea infusions. By sharing the properties of those ingredients and their health benefits, we try to help our guests discover how easy it is to create sustainable healthy food habits. Our guests go away with recipes and free samples of great products from yoghurt to pickles, tea and more.How do you think travellers can contribute to environmental sustainability? Guests at Six Senses already contribute just by staying in our hotels, as a percentage of all our revenue goes to our Sustainability Fund. In addition, I would say there are three important and easy tips for people who want to do more: 1) Support the local community by buying local and getting involved in a local charity, 2) Saying no to plastic, in particular, single-use plastic and 3) Produce and preserve your own food even if you start small or get involved in a community garden.What do you do for relaxation? After a long day at work, a good run is my preferred way to unwind and stay balanced. Apart from that, music, reading and spending time with my friends are some of my favourite things to do.What might you be if you were not the Head of Earth Lab Douro Valley? I would imagine myself doing exactly the same thing on the other side of the world or perhaps even with my own business. I can see myself with my own organic farm brimming with veggies, flowers and fruits!
- As foodies will already be well aware, there's no shortage of gourmet delights in South America. From the region's gastronomy king, Lima in Peru, which is home to the most highly-rated restaurant in South America, to other widely-recognised epicurean destinations such as Sao Paolo in Brazil, and Santiago in Chile, an eating spree in these cities are a food lover's dream. Beware, however, of overlooking other equally fantastic gourmet options in the region.See also 20 Definitive Culinary Experiences Around the World 5 Ultimate Experiences in South America These 7 National Parks in South America Will Captivate YouWith unique local flavours, an amazing variety of produce and inventive cuisine on offer, these South American cities have been making waves in the culinary world in recent years. Find out why exactly you should head to these destinations for your next gourmet adventure!
Buenos Aires, ArgentinaAs the capital of the country, Buenos Aires has grown increasingly multicultural in recent years, which has translated to a rapidly evolving gourmet scene. Besides the deliciously smoky grilled meats and traditional Porteno cuisine that are some of the hallmarks of Argentinean food, travellers can now find a variety of dining options. From seasonal tasting menus that champion local produce at places such as Chila and Aramburu, restaurants specialising in international cuisine such as Mishiguene with its modern Jewish menu and Osaka, which serves Peruvian-Japanese food, and off-the-beaten-path establishments such as Proper, which specialises in elaborate vegetarian dishes -- a rarity in the meat-loving country -- you'll find yourself spoilt for choice. Buenos Aires' also has a considerable amount of restaurants such as Tegui and Crizia that have placed in the Latin America's 50 Best Restaurants list.
Mendoza, ArgentinaStill on Argentina, Mendoza is also quickly climbing to the forefront of the international gastronomy scene. As the country's wine capital, the region's popularity amongst oenophiles has been the driving force behind the new restaurants popping up around the region. Besides serving wine, most of the bodegas here such as Bodega Ruca Malen also serve degustation menus to complement their award-winning tipples so you can enjoy the full dining experience. Sophisticated restaurants such as Azafran Resto, which uses techniques derived from international cooking to reinvent regional specialities, and traditional restaurants such as 1884, one of Latin America's 50 Best Restaurants that focuses on the roots of Argentinean cooking, and Siete Fuegos, which utilises historic open-flame cooking techniques, are also well worth dining at.
Bogota, ColombiaA recent host of Latin America's 50 Best Restaurants awards in 2017, it comes as little surprise that Bogota itself has an irresistible food scene. With a slew of new openings fuelled by the influx of young chefs from all over the world, the array of food options available will cater to every palette. Sample fresh produce in the colourful traditional market Paloquemao, indulge in the full sensory experience with tasting menus that employ a stunningly diverse amount of local ingredients at Leo, and try hearty comfort food such as ajiaco or chicken and potato soup with avocado and carimanolas or empanada-like pastries at La Escuela Restaurante and Misia respectively. The juicy and flavourful fruits in Colombia are particularly outstanding and a cup of freshly-squeezed juice will surely tantalise your taste buds. Award-winning restaurants such as Harry Sasson and Villanos en Bermudas will also surprise you with their imaginative creations.
La Paz, BoliviaLa Paz first registered on the radar as an up-and-coming gourmet destination when the founder of NOMA, one of the world's most highly-celebrated restaurants, made the decision to open a restaurant here. Citing the country's biodiversity and the untapped potential of its local cuisine, Claus Meyer established Gustu, which has since become the spearheader of the Kilometro 0 movement or an all-local food movement and recognised as one of Latin America's 50 Best Restaurants. Other than classy restaurants, more casual establishments such as Los Qnapes, which serves dishes from Bolivia's lowlands, and Popular, where contemporary Bolivian cuisine is dished up, also celebrate local cuisine in their own ways. Of course, you can't forget the street food that is a staple of many a local's life and it's from these stalls that you'll get to taste some of the most authentic local fare such as tucumanas or deep-fried meat or vegetable pastries and an anticucho or cow's heart kebab. Some of the other unique items you can expect to find here include charque de llama or llama jerky, chuno or freeze-dried potatoes, quinoa beer and singani or white grape brandy that is the country's national spirit.
Quito, EcuadorWith a gourmet scene that is often overlooked, Quito surprises with its multifaceted food scene. In this capital, you'll get to try everything from fine-dining to more casual bites and local Ecuadorian dishes to modern reinventions of traditional dishes. Sample some of the best traditional cooking such as llapingachos or stuffed potato patties, fritada or fried pork and ceviches at food stores in Mercado San Francisco, taste flavours inspired by the historic Incan empire at Urko, and try inventive dishes at establishments such as Theatrum and Zazu, which offer more modern tasting menus designed around local ingredients. Ecuador's chocolates are already famous worldwide so don't forget to go for a tasting session at the award-winning Pacari, which is also one of the country's leading organic chocolate producers.
Insider tips kindly contributed by Aliwen Incoming, Bolivia Milenaria, Coltur Peru, Gentian Trails and Glove Travel.
- Croatia's most interesting cities and a filming location for the popular series "Game of Thrones", Dubrovnik welcomes millions of visitors each year. Whilst it's orange-topped roofs, seaside views and winding cobblestone paths that lead to historic monuments are admittedly alluring, you shouldn't ignore its prime location either -- situated near the borders of Bosnia and Herzegovina and Montenegro, the destination is also a perfect jumping pad to these two countries.See also 5 Top Experiences in Croatia That Will Captivate You 10 Incredible Views of Possibly the Most Enigmatic Falls in the World 5 Game of Thrones Locations to Visit This SeasonTake advantage of the convenience and head on day trips to explore some of the top attractions in Dubrovnik's neighbouring countries. The varied cultures and histories of these other Balkan countries will not only be eye-opening but will also deepen your understanding of the region as a whole. Of course, your travels will also lead you to witness some simply breathtaking scenery!
Mostar, Bosnia and HerzegovinaThe arched bridge in Mostar, Stari Most, is one of the country's most recognisable icons and a stroll at this UNESCO World Heritage Site is a must when you're in town. During the warmer season, thrillseekers enjoy jumping off the 24-metre-tall bridge into the clear blue waters underneath -- though the act is warned against-- whilst a host of spectators gather around to witness the feat. As one of the most diverse cities in the region, Mostar's culture and architecture boast Ottoman, Austro-Hungarian and Yugoslavian influences, making it a fascinating destination to explore.The journey to Mostar takes two and a half hours per way but buffer in more time for your day trip if you're planning to stop by the Vjetrenica Caves en route. This sprawling underground cave system is the largest in the country and you'll come across several small lakes and cave drawings that are estimated to be 10,000 years old.
Kravica waterfall, Bosnia and HerzegovinaNot a fan of the crowds clamouring to get a good view of the waterfalls at Croatia's Plitvice Lakes National Park? Take the lesser-known route to Bosnia and Herzegovina's Kravica waterfall, which is a three-hour drive from Dubrovnik per way, to enjoy the sight of approximately 20 waterfalls cascading over mossy rocks in relative peace. Dubbed a "mini-Niagara" by Lonely Planet, the 25-metre-tall falls are surrounded by vibrant green pools that are perfect for swimming leisurely in; you can also opt to take a rowboat up close to the falls. Don't forget to head for a 15-minute walk up the hill if you'd like to take in a panoramic view of the Kravica waterfall from up high.
Trebinje, Bosnia and HerzegovinaIf you identify as an adventurous and curious wine lover, Trebinje will be right up your alley. At this under-the-radar town located in the heart of one of Bosnia and Herzegovina's two wine regions, you can drop by several family wineries that utilise both modern and traditional wine production techniques. Some of the varieties you can expect to find here include the white Zilavka and the reds Blatina and Vranac. You'd be hard pressed to find good Bosnian wine outside of the country's borders due to storage and bottling difficulties so it's recommended that you travel to the source itself if you wish to taste the top tipples the country has to offer. Best of all, the slowly burgeoning wine region is only a 40-minute drive away from Dubrovnik, making this an easy trip.
Budva, MontenegroOne of the more popular destinations in Montenegro, Budva stands out for its beautiful beaches and old town. Choose from 17 beaches to unwind at and bury your toes in the fine sand as you gaze out to the sparkling Adriatic sea, then delve into an exploration of the destination's historic centuries-old churches and palaces. A visit to the picturesque Sveti Stefan islet, which is connected to the mainland and surrounded by two pink beaches on each side, will also be one of the highlights of your trip. Budva is a two hour and forty minutes drive away from Dubrovnik.
Kotor, MontenegroThis gorgeous destination hugging the coast of the Adriatic Sea and surrounded by towering peaks has been dubbed one of the most beautiful places in Europe time and time again. Wander into the UNESCO World Heritage Site's well-preserved Stari Grad that dates back to medieval times to learn about local history, visit abandoned old Austro-Hungarian Fortresses and scale the Upper Town Walls for breathtaking views of the Bay of Kotor. A one-way journey to Kotor from Dubrovnik takes two hours and 15 minutes.
As a lover of nature and wildlife, safari holidays always get me excited as I'm able to observe animals in their own habitats and live surrounded by unspoilt nature. Despite this being our fifth time on safari between Houying, our Product Developer, and I, we’re still thrilled when we actually spot wildlife from our lodge or on game drives and trigger happy when it comes to taking pictures.See also Your Ultimate Guide to Successful African Safaris 5 Glamping Options Perfect for the Family Seeing Rhinos Responsibly: The Time is NowThis trip to the Serengeti sure didn't disappoint us! From spotting majestic lions to herds of other wildlife, insightful community visits and being pampered by the properties we stayed at, this was definitely a holiday to remember. Join us on our journey to Tanzania as I recount some of the highlights of our trip below. Every good holiday includes sumptuous meals, don't you agree? At our lovely lodge, we got to enjoy this incredible view of the plains while tucking into food that was cooked right on the spot. We were even lucky enough one day to have seen a herd of elephants trudge past whilst dining by the swimming pool! Did you know a newborn baby elephant weighs 100kg? Waking up bright and early is a given when you're on a safari holiday, which can admittedly be tiring if not for the adrenaline rush you get each time you spot wildlife. Thankfully, the large flat plains in the Serengeti means we get to spot herds easily, especially with the help of our trusty binoculars and the keen senses of our expert guide.We saw a lot of cats on this trip! Sometimes they look cute but other times they look scary. Still, we get warm fuzzy feelings when we see wildlife so relaxed around humans. They’re alert for predators but at least in this private reserve, they don't fear humans and let us drive close to them. This is why we’re glad to support causes like the Singita Grumeti Fund, which has an anti-poaching unit that preserves and protects wildlife. The Serengeti is one of the best places to spot the kings of the jungle; we’ve encountered prides of up to 20 and they’re among the best-looking lions we’ve ever seen. We spent a whole day observing lions just like how we people watched in Paris’ Cafe de Fiore. There’re many climbing lions in this area as they seem bent on getting a peaceful nap up where the flies can’t reach them.Apart from lions, cheetahs and jaguars, we also saw herds of zebra, wildebeest, gazelles and elephants grazing on the plains. Add in sightings of giraffes, ostriches and colourful birds along the way and it's safe to say our trip to the Serengeti was fantastic this time around. It's fascinating to observe all these animals just leisurely going about their daily lives.Even when you're taking a relaxing soak in the bathtub, you only have to look outside to see herds of animals roaming past. How cool is it to be this immersed in nature and to relax far away from the hectic city life?The community we visited really gave us insight into the local way of life. As villages are located out in the open amidst the wilderness, they remain exposed to animal attacks and thieves, which is a far cry from the comfort we have in Singapore. Yet, the people here are so positive and take the difficulties they face in stride, which we found really admirable. At the Environmental Education Centre, local students are taught about critical issues such as deforestation, soil erosion and water conservation as these topics affect each and every one of them. The visit here really got us thinking about how we can contribute more to environmental efforts. Safari holidays may be plenty of fun but they're also meaningful experiences as we are brought closer to nature in many ways!
Stay in this serene luxury hotel built within one of Iceland's most iconic attractions. Image by The Retreat.Situated atop an 800-year-old lava field and surrounded by Iceland's world-famous geothermal pool, the Blue Lagoon, The Retreat is the first luxury hotel and spa in the region.Once you lay eyes on the wide array of spa amenities available, you'll instantly feel your mind and body relax. Enjoy secluded access to the blue lagoon, a lava rock-heated steam room and even a cold well, and pamper yourself with the hotel's signature treatment, where you’ll lie on a floating mattress lightly submerged in the lagoon while a therapist slathers you with natural minerals before giving you a full-body massage.See also Beginner’s Guide to Chasing the Northern Lights Cave Activities to Interest Every Traveller Last-Minute Northern Lights? We’ve Got You CoveredThe luxury property has 62 suites that afford breathtaking vistas of the iridescent turquoise waters and multi-hued lava in the landscape. If you prefer more exclusivity, opt to stay in the Lagoon Suite, where you can walk out of your doorway right into the famous revitalising waters of the lagoon.
Walk out of your room and straight into the Blue Lagoon. Image by The Retreat.At the on-site Moss restaurant, you'll be able to sample a wide variety of local Icelandic cuisine over a seven-course tasting menu. If you're an oenophile, opt to pair your food with wines stored in a special lava rock cave.When night falls, you may even see the Northern Lights dancing in the horizon if you're lucky enough. The hotel also offers complimentary yoga sessions and guided group hikes.Room tariffs begin from ISK180,000 (S$2252) per night.
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