20 Thursday May 4 2017 Latest Christchurch news at www. .kiwi The Star Let 2018 take you further. Air Credit Offer Avalon Waterways get up to $ 2,500 per couple air credit * When you book any 2018 Avalon Waterways Europe cruise Plus single traveller solo deals Magnificent Europe BUDAPEST TO AMSTERDAM – 14 NIGHTS from $ 7,069pp Active Discovery on the Rhine FRANKFURT TO AMSTERDAM – 7 NIGHTS from $ 4,739pp New for 2018 Share twin (Category E), flights additional. Departs 25 Mar 18. Share twin (Category E), flights additional. Departs 15 Jul 18. Includes: • Gourmet cuisine with all meals onboard incl. regional wine & beer with lunches and dinners • Professional Cruise Director and sightseeing with Local Guides • Complimentary WiFi access • Onboard gratuities and port charges Includes: • Gourmet cuisine with all meals onboard incl. regional wine & beer with lunches and dinners • Professional Cruise Director and sightseeing with Local Guides • Complimentary WiFi access • Onboard gratuities and port charges NB: all Active Discovery departures are on the Avalon Felicity, a Scenery class ship HIGHLIGHTS • BEER TASTING IN REGENSBURG • VISIT THE BISHOP’S RESIDENZ IN WÜRZBURG • CRUISE THROUGH THE RHINE GORGE HIGHLIGHTS THIS CRUISE OFFERS YOU A RANGE OF ACTION- PACKED SIGHTSEEING OPTIONS ALLOWING YOU TO BIKE, HIKE, PAINT AND LEARN YOUR WAY ALONG THE RHINE RIVER. Speak to our specialists about tailoring a cruise for you. HOT.CO.NZ BARRINGTON 331 7182 I FERRYMEAD 376 4022 I HIGH ST LANES 339 3440 I HORNBY 344 3070 I MERIVALE 355 2200 NORTHLANDS 352 4578 I ON VICTORIA 365 7687 I RANGIORA 313 0288 I RICCARTON 341 3900 I SHIRLEY 385 0710 UPPER RICCARTON 343 0869 CONDITIONS: *Valid for new bookings until 06 Jun 17 or until sold out. A non-refundable, non-transferable $500 per person/per cruise deposit must be received within 7 days of booking (or by 06 Jun 17; whichever comes first). Air Credit offer: Book a 2018 Europe river cruise departure of 7 days or more and receive an Air Credit to use towards an airfare of your choice. Air Credit value is dependent on the cruise and departure booked and will range from $325 - $1250 per person. Offer available across all cabin categories. Should you cancel or change your cruise, this Air Credit becomes null and void and the full cost of any airfare purchased or any associated change fees will be your responsibility. All airline payment and cancellation terms are completely independent of Avalon Waterways. Avalon Waterways is not responsible for any booking element of the airfare which you have utilised the credit for, even if SafetyNet Protection has been purchased. Avalon Waterways cancellation penalties apply as per standard terms and conditions. SafetyNet Protection may be purchased, standard conditions apply. SafetyNet Protection cover relates only to the Avalon Waterways portion of the booking and does not cover any associated airfares booked in conjunction with this offer. The Air Credit is 100% non-refundable and non-transferable under all circumstances and is handled as a discount off the cruise portion. ^Single Traveller offer: has limited availability per departure and only available for cabin categories E, D, B, A & P. Offers may not be combined with each other, or any other special promotion or discount except the 5% Repeat Travellers (Journeys Club) discount (standard conditions apply). Air Credit offer valid for Singles (single supplement applies). Air Credit offer valid for Groups – special conditions apply. Offers can be withdrawn or amended at any time. Additional restrictions may apply. Full Avalon 2018 terms & conditions apply, please ensure you read these prior to booking - see the 2018 Avalon Waterways brochure or visit avalonwaterways.co.nz.
The Star 21 Travel Latest Christchurch news at www. More to Rarotonga than the beaches .kiwi Thursday May 4 2017 • By Mike Yardley PLANNING an escape to Rarotonga? Tear yourself away from the beach to dig a little deeper at the roots of the island. Venture along the back road and enter a timeless world of free-range harmony in abundance. On my various forays along the back road, I feasted on freshlyplucked pawpaw, mango, guava, bananas and star-fruit, bursting from the roadside trees. Scenically insatiable, I marvelled at the colourfully-painted hinterland homes and the dense plantations, bracketed by Rarotonga’s serrated peaks which exude a Jurassic Park aura. There are many ways to get a flavour for Rarotonga’s vast green heart, including taking a ride with the recently launched Tik-e Tours. These tropical three-wheeler luxury tuk-tuk limousines are fully electric, so unlike the racket they make on the streets of Bangkok, these beauties will glide you around Rarotonga’s ravishing interior in virtual silence. My driver/guide was a worldly elder called Mata, a natural and charismatic raconteur. Throughout my tour, every passer-by warmly waved out to Mata, or stopped to chat. One chap we talked to was busy cultivating noni fruit by hand. Lauded by locals for centuries for its numerous health benefits, noni juice has taken the world by TROPICAL: Ikurangi’s foliage is typical of the Rarotongan hinterland. Right – Shower in the open air at the Ikurangi Eco-Retreat. storm and is the Cook Islands’ No 1 agricultural export product. My two-hour tour traversed a slew of insights, including stops at ancient marae sites, a rendezvous with Government House, the magnificently carved new war memorial in honour of the 500 local soldiers who fought in World War 1, Tinomana Palace and the sacred Great Migration site of Avana Passage. Operating for just over a year, the people behind Tik-e Tours are Cook Islander Tania Farman and her husband, Karl, who have swapped corporate life in Auckland for the Rarotongan lifestyle, while injecting an innovative and eco-friendly tourism product into the mix. www.tik-etours.com For more heartland hi-jinks I jumped behind the wheel of a Rarotonga Buggy Tour. These grunty off-road vehicles are a REFRESHING: Stop for an ice-cream on a buggy tour of Rarotonga’s green heart. cross between a kart and a beach buggy, highly manoeuvrable and hardy. They’re even kitted out with roll cages if it all goes badly wrong. These wildly popular buggy tours have been making quite a splash for two years. Our conga line of yellow buggies looked like a slithering giant snake. The biggest mud pits awaited us at the site of ill-fated and abandoned Sheraton Hotel development, where the grounds have been reworked as an off-road buggy track, which is where I got utterly splattered in mud, as we ripped up and down the mounds of the track. Our touring route also romped into the hinterland and the Turangi Valley, thickly carpeted with tropical rainforest. Seriously good fun if you like to get down and dirty. www.rarobuggytours. com Swathed in jungle-like tropical foliage, the environmentallyfriendly embrace of Ikurangi Eco- Retreat is a winning new roost in Rarotonga. Established by Luana and Matt Scowcroft last year, this thoughtfully created offering treads a very light footprint. You’ll notice the sustainability elements wherever you turn. The toilets are self-composting, the beautiful toiletries by Ashley & Co are studiously organic, the natural and biodegradable cleaning products, a sustainable waste management system, all materials are sustainably sourced and there’s free use of bicycles to go exploring. Being uber-boutique, the experience is absolutely distinctive, personalised and ultra-attentive. Luana says: “We think of it as a unique combination of the allure of a safari with the romance of the RESPECT: Rarotonga’s new war memorial in honour of soldiers who fought in World War 1. South Seas, where luxury meets sustainability.” I loved sleeping in my luxury safari tent, stunningly furnished, and perched on a deck to allow airflow. A tropical breakfast was delivered to my deck each morning and I adored the locally-roasted, fair trade plunger coffee. I awoke each morning to the “Tail of the Sky,” Mt Ikurangi, gilded in the glow of the rising Rarotongan sun, and I revelled in the novelty of showering in the open-air bathroom, flanked by swaying palms and bountiful banana trees. FAST FACTS •Set amid the bountiful hinterland beauty, but just minutes from the beach, Ikurangi Eco-Resort is a masterclass in sustainable hospitality in paradise. Five per cent of Ikurangi Eco Retreat profits go to local conservation initiatives. www.ikurangi.com I do love how Rarotonga is replete with colourful roadside stalls brimming with freshly picked produce and alluring treats, like organic fruit ice cream. They directly help villagers supplement their incomes. It’s a great way to give back. www.feelraro.co.nz watch local | support local | shop local Join our hosts Geoff & renee on sKy ChaNNeL 83 Thursday 7.30pm repeaTs friday 1.30am & 7.30am Just Arrived the latest drop of Ketz Ke exciting pieces instore now! WE SHARE YOUR VISION SKY 083 + On Demand WWW.STAR.KIWI for enquiries, contact Geoff moreton: 021 1066 177 Great service, style & variety 55 Nottingham Avenue, Halswell. Phone: 322 6126