DOME’S WHERE THE HEART IS

Sunday Herald Sun - Escape - - ESCAPE | TRAVEL NEWS - SU­SAN BUGG

Mod­ern trav­ellers want more from a ho­tel these days than a com­fort­able bed and room ser­vice. It has to look pretty glam on In­sta­gram, too. NSW has plenty of op­tions for the #ho­tel set: For a start, search #bub­ble­ten­taus­tralia, #hotel­ravesis or #ki­moes­tate on In­sta.

Now the state’s north­west has an­other place to stay that ticks the so­cial me­dia box. Far­away Domes is set on a work­ing sheep and beef prop­erty in Warialda, in­land from Coffs Har­bour.

Fac­ing east, the self-con­tained pri­vate ge­o­desic dome, built for two, is ap­par­ently the first of its kind in NSW and fea­tures a king-size four­poster, open-plan liv­ing and kitchen area, pri­vate bath­room and el­e­vated deck with out­door bath. FARAWAYDOMES.COM, OR @FARAWAYDOMES ON IN­STA­GRAM (OF COURSE)

WHALE SWIM HOL­I­DAYS

On top of new tours to Nor­way and closer to home in Queens­land next year, Aus­tralian com­pany Majestic Whale En­coun­ters has an­nounced Tahiti’s first whale swim hol­i­days.

Two seven-night get­aways in Oc­to­ber will in­clude five days search­ing for and swim­ming with hump­back whales around the is­land of Moorea. Re­sort ac­com­mo­da­tion, meals and lo­cal cul­tural ex­pe­ri­ences are also part of the pro­gram, $6999 a per­son, twin-share (flights ex­tra).

Tours in­clude ac­com­mo­da­tion at a lux­ury beach­side re­sort, all meals, Poly­ne­sian cul­tural ex­pe­ri­ences and five days spent in the crys­tal-clear wa­ters, search­ing for and swim­ming with hump­backs.

The com­pany is also plan­ning whale swims in Canada for 2020.

MAJESTICWHALEENCOUNTERS.COM.AU

CHOICE LUG­GAGE GUIDE

Look­ing for new lug­gage for your sum­mer hol­i­day? For best value, the mes­sage from Choice is to avoid the most ex­pen­sive and the cheap­est.

The con­sumer group’s lat­est round of tests – drop­ping suit­cases onto con­crete from a height, putting them un­der the shower to sim­u­late rain as well as check­ing their sta­bil­ity while car­ry­ing 15kg of clothes – re­vealed that the most costly cases don’t al­ways de­liver on qual­ity.

Nicky Breen, from Choice, says two high-end mod­els, one a $649 Lo­jel Cubo, fin­ished in the bot­tom half of re­sults. “The Lo­jel was one of three cases which failed the lift and drop test as the base of the suit­case cracked and all four wheels were dam­aged,” Nicky says.

The $299 Antler Juno 2 fin­ished equal first with the Sam­sonite 72 Hours DLX spin­ner, fol­lowed by the $899 Sam­sonite Cos­mo­lite 3.0.

The cheap­est mod­els in the test – the Jet­stream from Big W and the Kmart Ac­tive & Co – fin­ished last.

CHOICE.COM.AU/LUG­GAGE

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