Each South Pacific island has a uniqueness you won’t find anywhere else. Here is just a sampling of some of its fabulous destinations.
Guest Services Manager,
Magical Journeys Beyond
Only 70 miles west of Shanghai, China’s high-tech metropolis, Suzhou is a world apart, a wonderland of lush classical gardens, age-old canals and winding rivers, and revered cultural institutions. The graceful city that once attracted ancient emperors and court officials, artists and poets, still draws Chinese vacationers as well as savvy Westerners.
Suzhou - pronounced “sue-joe” - is easily reached. Airlines fly regularly from major U.S. and Canadian gateways to Shanghai. Take the high-speed Maglev train into the city and visit mega-tall skyscrapers and elegant 19th-century European buildings along the riverside Bund. Or proceed directly to Suzhou. From Shanghai’s Pudong International Airport or Hongqiao International Airport, bullet trains make the 30-minute trip.
For those who want to visit Asia, but are not sure where to start, Taiwan is the perfect place to visit and experience Asian culture. Taiwan will ease you into the East in a very gentle and wonderful way. An island that is located in the heart of Asia, Taiwan is rich with not only modern cities, but ancient Chinese temples, and a bounty of nature, boasting hot springs and stunning mountains.
If you are faint-of-heart, forget about crossing the street in in Ho Chi Min City (Saigon), Vietnam. About two million scooters, mopeds and motorcycles swarm like bees along the thoroughfares. The skill needed to cross them is bravado.
Many people who have been to Vietnam think they have experienced all of Southeast Asia. Not true. Each mainland country - Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar (Burma), Malaysia, Thailand and Vietnam - is unique. Here is a tiny sampling of each.
All the world on an island - from Michelin starred restaurants to lush gorges and warm hearted people - Taiwan offers your clients experiences, that embrace the old and new.
Agents have a great opportunity to sell Taiwan, a small island with big attractions and many chances to experience the warmth of the Taiwanese people while sharing ancient Chinese traditions and modern lifestyles. Your clients will most likely start in Taipei, Taiwan’s capital and the center of modern Taiwanese life, a good example is the balance of old and new influences.
Australia is a diverse country and a huge continent - a place for adventure where excitement and natural beauty blend.
It teems with wildlife, is home to the Aboriginal people, has its own wine country and more than 900 islands in its Great Barrier Reef.
Arrayed across undulating hills overlooking its namesake bay, Japan’s Nagasaki is considered the “Naples of the Orient.” But Nagasaki is even better known as the city where the second Atomic bomb was dropped on August 9, 1945, killing 75,000 people, wounding another 75,000, and leaving generations of survivors physically and emotionally scarred.
The bombing was Nagasaki’s greatest tragedy. But it wasn’t the first. In 1597, nearly 50 years after St. Francis Xavier brought Christianity to Japan, Nagasaki witnessed the hilltop crucifixion of 26 Roman Catholic missionaries and laymen followed by more than 250 years of Christian expulsion and persecution.
Flight cancellations in New York and Toronto delayed my scheduled arrival at Incheon International Airport in Seoul, South Korea. Weary, I boarded the hotel bus bound for the Lotte Hotel Seoul, a member of WorldHotels deluxe collection. With plenty of activities and sights to see in the city, the Lotte Seoul is an elegant, comfortable five-star retreat. www.lottehotelseoul.com
In the 1550s, Portuguese traders and missionaries established an outpost along the South China coast. They named it Macao after the Chinese goddess of seafarers. Since then, Macao has become a world-class destination with glittering casino-hotels, many owned by the Sands resort and gaming empire, which also built the Marina Bay Sands in Singapore, and The Venetian and The Palazzo in Las Vegas. But Macao’s appeal goes far beyond its baccarat and roulette tables.