SEW THRILLED BY THRONES
As the Games of Thrones’ seventh season hit screens last week, Northern Ireland – location double for the kingdom of Westeros – has unveiled an ambitious project celebrating the blockbuster TV series.
A 77m Bayeux-style tapestry depicting locations from Winterfell to the Iron Islands and detailing infamous scenes from the series is now on show at the Ulster Museum in Belfast. The tapestry is made from Northern Irish linen and as Season 7 unfolds, new sections will be revealed each week. Fans can watch the tapestry take shape via an app at Ireland.com. The website also has tips on how to plan a behind-the-scenes visit to Game of Thrones locations in Northern Ireland. IRELAND.COM/GAMEOFTHRONES
Seekers of cheap airfares will need to have their booking fingers at the ready on Tuesday as budget carrier Scoot releases sale fares to South-East Asia, China, India and Greece. One-way fares start from $99 for a PerthSingapore flight (bags and food not included), with Sydney and Melbourne passengers up for $139 one way to the airline’s Singapore hub. Passengers can travel until March 24, 2018, with some blackout periods.
The sale marks the merger this week of long-haul Tigerair (Singapore) under the Scoot brand. SCOOT.COM
TANZANIA TOPS FOR SAFARIS
Hailed as a “wildlife photographer’s dream come true” by one guidebook writer, Tanzania has been voted Africa’s best country to go on safari in a survey of 2500 safari tourists and a panel of African experts.
Tanzania ranked top overall as a safari destination over Zambia, Botswana, Kenya, South Africa, Namibia, Uganda and Zimbabwe in the survey by Dutch-based safari comparison-and-sales site Safari Bookings. They used reviews by travellers and a panel of guidebook authors as basis for the research.
Tanzania, known for Serengeti National Park, Ngorongoro Crater and Africa’s highest mountain Mt Kilimanjaro in the country’s north, was also named best destination for wildlife. Not only does it have the Big Five species but also more unusual sights such as the flamingoes of soda ash Lake Manyara in the south.
The remote, rocky landscape of Namibia made it most popular for scenery while Zambia was voted No.1 for best bush vibe.
It is the second time the safari site has conducted the survey, with Tanzania also winning in 2013.
NSW has overtaken Queensland as the most popular Australian state where international travellers experience Aboriginal tourism.
According to Destination NSW, the sector grew by 62 per cent in visitor-participation in the year ended March 2017.
Adventurous visitors have discovered Aboriginal-owned and operated businesses such as Sand Dune Adventures near Port Stephens, which started in 2008 with eight quad bikes and now has more than 100 bikes. “Our tours have grown from as little as two to three times per week to seven days per week and a minimum of five tours being offered per day,” operator Andrew Smith says. “More and more international travellers are booking our tours to learn about the local Aboriginal culture and significance of the Sand Dunes.”
New operators include Wajaana Yaam Gumbaynggirr Adventure Tours, a social enterprise that offers stand-up paddleboard tours in Coffs Harbour’s Solitary Islands Marine Park.
However, adventure aside, seeing art, craft and cultural displays were the most popular Aboriginal tourism experiences.
The tapestries will be on display in the Ulster Museum in Belfast, Northern Ireland.