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STA Travel Blog

#RTW: The Jubilee

It turns out that our Travel Experts are a patriotic bunch. They were beavering away recently, planning amazing round the world itineraries, and they just couldn’t resist showing their appreciation for Queen and country.

The result? Our most patriotic round the world route yet. Citizens of Great Britain, I give you The Jubilee! Taking in a whopping 17 Commonwealth countries, if this trip doesn’t make you feel proud to be a part of it all, nothing will.

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6 Offbeat Outback Events

Whenever I start talking about Australia’s Northern Territory; I am transported back to some of my favourite travelling days; road tripping with my girlfriend around Australia. While not strictly true in a geographical sense, the Northern Territory acted like a wonderland plateau. An escape from the gold-lined coastlines and coffee shop urbanity of Australia cities.

“This, ” I figured, “is the Australia I came for.”

The experience of road tripping through the Territory was often a surreal one. We would drive our ute for long hours, without sight of another vehicle. Our Sat Nav stared at us nonchalantly. We cheered as we veered around rare bends in the road; and whooped as the fear of an empty fuel tank was alleviated by petrol stations that appeared from nowhere.

The landscape is indubitably one of its most iconic features; in the south, its fire red deserts are pinned down by pale green bursts of spinifex grass and the length of steel grey tarmac that make up Highways 1 and 87.

In the tropical north, a mishmash of wetlands and winding rivers flourish in “the Wet” season (the Australian summer, November to January) before drying out for the winter months.

But there’s something else going on in the Northern Territory, which, if you’re a traveller seeking out authentic experiences, could be right up your creek. The people of the Northern Territory have a character that can only be born within such a unique collection of landscape. And from that; a collection of curious events have bloomed:
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10 European Festivals for your Diary

I know. You’ve always wanted to go to at least one major European festival. For years, you’ve been hounding our mates to head down to Spain for La Tomatina. Since you were a wee child, you’ve been begging people to join you at Up Helly Aa.

Are you going to a festival in Europe this year? These boys are waiting for you, at Up Helly Aa

Hopefully you’ve ticked one or two off your list already, but this is your year of travel. This is the year to take a long hard look at your travel ambitions and make a move.

No continent does cultural festivals on the scale that Europe does; and while some have been around for what seems like eternity, other festivals have made their way onto the radar of fun-loving travellers with great aplomb.
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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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Ask the Experts: Best Spots for an Asia Virgin?

Welcome back to the lair of the Experts; a beehive of diverse opinions, spiced with facts, hints and tips for you and your journeys. Each week, we get together with three of our branch staff to deliberate a question from an STA Travel Blog reader.

This week, we were faced with a real eyebrow-raiser, as Sue from Romford revealed her travel ambitions and laid down the gauntlet for our Experts.

As always, if you’d like some help planning your next big trips, email our Experts a question and you could find it featured in an upcoming feature, right here on the STA Travel Blog!

Remember, this feature isn’t all about what we think; we want you to share your own ideas in the comment thread below the post!

So without further ado, please welcome Sue to the spotlight, with this week’s question…
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