WE’RE ALL EARS

The Sunday Telegraph (Sydney) - Escape - - ASK THE EXPERT DOC HOLIDAY - KIM CULYER

We are go­ing to the United States in Oc­to­ber with our fam­ily and want to spend Hal­loween at Dis­ney World Or­lando. We ar­rive in Los An­ge­les and want to drive to Las Ve­gas plus see Sal­va­tion Moun­tain and the In­te­gra­tron Dome, then fly to Or­lando. Any sug­ges­tions of the best way to do this?

DOC ¿

It’s about a three-hour drive from Los An­ge­les to Sal­va­tion Moun­tain, which is south of Palm Springs. This moun­tain side is painted and sculp­tured as a trib­ute to God. Once you’ve spent time there, take the 90minute drive back up to Palm Springs and spend the night at the Best West­ern (best­west­ern.com), a well priced ho­tel with break­fast.

While you’re in Palm Springs, you may like to ride the Aerial Tramway (pstramway.com). It’s the world’s largest ro­tat­ing tram car which trav­els over 4km to the moun­tain-top sta­tion with an el­e­va­tion of more than 2500m. As it trav­els, it slowly ro­tates giv­ing you amaz­ing views of the valley be­low. At the top are restau­rants, ob­ser­va­tion decks, history mu­seum and hik­ing trails. The next day head south to the bot­tom en­trance of the Joshua Tree National Park – a one-hour drive – then make your way through the park to the north­ern end. Be sure to stop at the en­trance and grab a pass. Ex­plore at leisure the spec­tac­u­lar land­scapes, plant life and rock for­ma­tions of the two dif­fer­ent desert ecosys­tems that meet there. Take lunch and snacks as there are no of­fi­cial cafes in the park.

After you exit the park, it’s an easy 30-minute drive to Lan­ders where you will find the turn-off to the In­te­gra­tron. This dome-shaped struc­ture in the Mo­jave Desert was built after an en­gi­neer al­legedly re­ceived in­struc­tions from the planet Venus dur­ing a UFO en­counter.

Peo­ple head to this all-wood, acous­ti­cally per­fect sound cham­ber to en­joy sound baths played on quartz crys­tal singing bowls.

From Lan­ders, it will take about four hours to reach Las Ve­gas. Once here you could look at stay­ing at Circus Circus (cir­cus­cir­cus.com). It’s well priced, in the mid­dle of the ac­tion and

fea­tures plenty of ac­tiv­i­ties the fam­ily will en­joy in­clud­ing a new wa­ter park, the Ad­ven­ture Dome full of rides and at­trac­tions, plus free circus acts.

In Or­lando, the B Re­sort and Spa (bho­tel­san­dresorts.com) is well priced for fam­i­lies. It’s part of Dis­ney World and in­cludes free trans­port to all the parks and at­trac­tions.

MAR­ITIME HISTORY

We are trav­el­ling to Shang­hai and are in­ter­ested in vis­it­ing the cargo/wharf area to view Shang­hai’s mar­itime in­dus­try. How do we travel from the in­ner city to the port?

DOC ¿

Parts of the orig­i­nal wharf were de­mol­ished in 2004, then re­stored and in­cor­po­rated into what is known as the Bund, mean­ing em­bank­ment, on the bank of the Huangpu River. The most pop­u­lar way to the Bund is the metro line two or 10. Get off at the East Nan­jing Road sta­tion and it’s about a 10-minute walk. The port of Shang­hai is in­dus­trial and not a place you’d visit.

In­stead, visit the China Mar­itime Mu­seum, which is lo­cated by the lake in Lin­gang New Town. You will need a day to ex­plore the six ex­hi­bi­tion halls, two spe­cial zones and sci­ence movie the­atres all con­trast­ing the past, present and fu­ture of their mar­itime in­dus­try. It’s open from 9.30am to 4.30pm every day ex­cept Mon­day. To get there, hop on the metro train ser­vice line 16 to Dishui Hu Sta­tion. Leave this sta­tion from exit two and take a taxi to the mu­seum for about $3.

The new Shang­hai History Mu­seum, at Peo­ple’s Square, houses more than 1000 cul­tural relics in­clud­ing skulls, pot­tery and other arte­facts in more than 9000 sq m.

Al­low plenty of time to ex­plore these dis­plays. You also have the Shang­hai Mu­nic­i­pal History Mu­seum, under the Ori­en­tal Pearl Ra­dio and TV Tower. It show­cases how Shang­hai de­vel­oped from a small seashore fish­ing vil­lage into the big­gest city in China with wax­works, dio­ra­mas and life-size recre­ations of old Shang­hai.

HORSE RAC­ING

My hus­band turns 60 later this year and loves the horse races. On his bucket list is rac­ing in Hong Kong but I’m not sure how

to ap­proach this as there are two big tracks and he wants to go to both, ei­ther in Novem­ber or De­cem­ber. Can you help?

DOC ¿

The Hong Kong In­ter­na­tional race event runs early De­cem­ber each year and if your hus­band is a rac­ing en­thu­si­ast, then this is the pin­na­cle. A tour with Aus­tralian Rac­ing Tours (aus­tralian­rac­ing­tours.com.au) be­gins De­cem­ber 4. It in­cludes a guided tour of Hong Kong, the In­ter­na­tional Jock­eys Chal­lenge at the Happy Valley

race­course, Break­fast with the Stars and Bar­rier Draw at the Sha Tin race­course, meet­ings with rac­ing celebri­ties plus a suite at the races. There’s also plenty of time for sight­see­ing and ex­plor­ing. Am­bas­sador Travel (am­bas­sador­travel.com.au) is also host­ing a tour to this year’s Hong Kong In­ter­na­tional. It too fea­tures all the at­trac­tions of the rac­ing week, plus the op­tion to play golf in Shen­zhen, China, ex­tend your tour to Ma­cau or per­haps Bei­jing. If you’d rather plan your own time in Hong Kong and visit the cour­ses at leisure, Dis­cover Hong Kong (dis­cov­er­hongkong.com) can tai­lor an itin­er­ary to in­clude the horse races plus your other in­ter­ests.

LUG­GAGE ON STOPOVER

We want to visit our daugh­ter, who lives in Am­s­ter­dam, but avoid the leg of the jour­ney that in­volves a 13- or 14-hour flight. Is it pos­si­ble to have two stopovers which may or may not in­volve an overnight stop, while our main lug­gage goes straight through to Am­s­ter­dam?

DOC ¿

It may be pos­si­ble to go via Perth with an­other break in Asia or the Mid­dle East. This type of trip is some­thing you should speak to your travel agent about. They can ad­vise you.

PIC­TURES: DIS­NEY, SUP­PLIED, GETTY

UNITED STATES Mickey and Min­nie Mouse love Hal­loween at Dis­ney World, Or­lando, in Florida; the Shang­hai Mu­nic­i­pal History Mu­seum show­cases how China’s big­gest city was once a small fish­ing vil­lage, and Sha Tin Race­course, Hong Kong, is per­fect for...

HONG KONG

CHINA

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