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STA Travel Blog

Ask the Experts: Is the Outback just a big desert?

It’s that time of the week again, when we wheel in the Travel Experts for one of the most popular slots on the STA Travel Blog; that’s right, it’s time to Ask the Experts!

This week’s question focuses on one of Australia’s most legend-laden regions; often mislabelled as one of the seven states, the Northern Territory lives up to its name, and remains a territory of the Commonwealth government.

Also home to one of the world’s most famous icons; some of the planet’s most diverse landscapes, including the World Heritage Kakadu National Park, and some of Australia’s richest running Aboriginal culture.

Before we crack on, remember, if you want to pose a question to the panel, it takes just 30 seconds to email the Travel Experts with your question, and you could see it featured, right here on the STA Travel Blog, in the near future!

Let’s dig a little deeper into the Outback, with a look at this week’s question from Millie in Peterborough:

I’ve seen a lot about Australia’s Northern Territory recently; I’ll be in Oz in September. Is two weeks enough time to explore? Is it all just one big desert — won’t I get bored? Millie in Peterborough

It’s little surprise Millie has been tempted by the NT; it’s long offered travellers to Australia some incredible and inspiring routes; through unmistakable scenery peppered with that famous, and authentic True Blue spirit.

That’s enough from me, let’s throw this open to this week’s Travel Experts, Sarah and Heather!

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Ask the Experts: How should I approach the Golden Triangle?

This week, our fabulous Experts return to the panel to face a question of untold adventure. Centring around one of the world’s most alluring regions; a place of romantic history, and incredible modern life.

They call it the Golden Triangle, and it’s formed by three of North India’s most revered city’s: Delhi, the mighty capital; Agra, home to the Taj Mahal; and Jaipur, The Pink City. Teetering on the edge of Rajasthan, this is a region that has long attracted the eye of foreign explorers, and it’s soon the turn of Kylie from Lincoln, who has emailed the Experts to ask them for some straight-up advice.

How long do I need to explore India’s Golden Triangle? And as a single female, is it a destination you would recommend? Thanks Experts! Kylie in Lincoln

But can they meet the task? Can they lay down a response worthy of such a grand location? There’s only one way to find out, let’s hand over to the Experts…
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Lauren Pegg’s Inca Trail Adventures

One minute you’re clicking through Facebook, looking at pictures of weekends gone by and ruing the day you ever agreed to strike that pose.

The next, you get a phone call from STA Travel HQ, telling you that you’ve just won a trip to Peru, that includes return flights plus a 12 day tour that will take you via the Amazon rainforest to Machu Picchu, and the heights of the Inca Trail.

And the best thing about it? You get to take along a friend!

That’s what happened for Lauren Pegg who entereed our Like It & Land It competition and won a place for her and a lucky chosen one to on the Amazon to the Andes tour plus return flights for the two them.

Lauren and her friend are not what you would call camera shy! | Photo by Lauren

We caught up with Lauren recently, to ask her how her trip was and to see if there was anything she wanted to let people know about her journey through some of South America’s most enigmatic landscapes.

If there’s anything you’d like to know about Lauren’s journey, feel free to ask a question in the comment thread below this post.

Here’s our interview, with the lovely Lauren…

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Slap a Snap Gap in Your #YearofTravel!

As the Year of Travel rolls through the wilds of your imagination, it’s time to turn your attention to your own travel ambitions. And what better place to start than with an adventure that celebrates the very best of a region, with a good amount of time to sink your teeth into its culture?

Some call them Snap Gaps; some say Snap Years; others label them ‘mini gap years’; I simply prefer to call them by their proper name: a couple of months’ travelling.

Two months is enough time to unravel, and immerse yourself in the experience. It’s short enough, that with a little planning, you can slip it into a summer of seamless fun, or set off on a sabbatical of untold possibilities.

But where would you travel to? There are some fantastic destinations, that are conveniently located beside each other, and seemingly begging to be explored this year. I’ve rounded up some of my favouruite regions around the world, to give you a flavour of what you could achieve throughout your Year of Travel.
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7 Outstanding North America Tours

Our new brochures are whirling through the printing presses right now, which is all pretty exciting for our team of Product Managers, who scour the land in search of the best tours around the world.

I caught up with Anna Borthwick, whose job it is to unearth the tour products for the Americas. Can you imagine having Anna’s job? Hunting the North and South America for the most exciting adventures to deliver to you, our STA Travel customers.

I have a sinister side, so I set Anna a challenge. Out of all of the brand new small group tours that we sell in North America, could she extract her favourite seven.

She winced.

I glared.

She winced some more.

“But they’re all my favourites!” she decried. I glared some more, while a wry grin seeped across my face. “OK,” she sighed. “I’ll do it, but only if you post it on the STA Travel Blog so that people can read about my selection.”

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