A LOO TO A KILL
Yes, the headline is a terrible pun – and it’s the wrong Bond movie – but who could resist when 007themed restrooms have been named the best toilets for tourists in the world. The interactive James Bond loos are at 2970m in a revolving restaurant and visitor centre at the top of Mt Schilthorn in Switzerland, a spectacular alpine location which doubled as Blofeld’s lair in On Her Majesty’s Secret Service (the one with Aussie Bond George Lazenby).
The bathrooms’ new look was completed last year ahead of the movie’s 50th anniversary in 2019. Audiovisual effects include Bond girl Diana Rigg appearing in the mirror when men wash their hands. Signs for men advise, “Shake, don’t stir” and “Aim like James”. In the ladies, a shot rings out as Bond appears in the mirror beside a bullethole and says, “Tonight, my place – just the two of us.”
The 2018 International Toilet Tourism Awards are an Australian project in their second year designed to show the links between welldesigned (and memorable) toilets and successful tourism. Aussie
winners include the Cummins Mosaic Loo on South Australia’s Eyre Peninsula (best economic contributor), and Brisbane Airport’s accessible facilities, which include an indoor loo for guide dogs. SCHILTHORN.CH, MYTRAVELRESEARCH.COM
NEW YEAR ON THE HARBOUR
Sydney’s New Year fireworks rate among the popular postings on Tourism Australia’s Instagram account. If you want to contribute next year from an out-of-theordinary angle, camping packages to stay and see the spectacle in the middle of the harbour are now on sale. Cockatoo Island’s New Year’s Eve glamping and camping packages start from $450 a night for bringyour-own gear sites. No tent? A twonight stay in provided amenities starts from $950 for two to six people. COCKATOOISLAND.GOV.AU
Cycle tour company Spice Roads has introduced E-bikes to its Vietnam and Sri Lanka departures. The battery-powered bicycles are great for riders who aren’t confident about their abilities, but a big selling point for Spice Roads is that they are a way for keen cyclists to entice their nonriding partners to take a holiday on the road. E-bikes are now available on three Sri Lanka itineraries and multiple trips in Vietnam including a 17-day ride from Saigon to Hanoi. SPICEROADS.COM
GROVE GETS GROOVE BACK
Travellers to America’s Yosemite National Park can marvel at one of its most amazing sites again. The Mariposa Grove, home to more than 500 giant sequoia trees, has been closed for the past three years for restoration work to improve the habitat and visitor experiences. But the grove has been officially reopened for hikes and guided tours. NPS.GOV
These Bondthemed toilets at the Schilthorn cableway in Switzerland have a licence to thrill.