The honeymoon – that long-awaited, romantic celebration for two – only became common practice for the general public in the U.S. around 1930, according to one source. Today, an estimated 1.4 million U.S. couples go on honeymoons annually. Of those who do, 37 percent of honeymoons are to domestic locations while 63 percent opt for foreign destinations. Yet, according to abouttravel.com, only one in four couples actually go on their dream honeymoon.
You only get once chance for a first honeymoon. Shouldn’t it be the trip of a lifetime? Make sure you are among those who enjoy your dream honeymoon…
Hang from the side of a mountain – overnight
Sacred Valley, Peru
That’s right! You sleep within a completely transparent hanging bedroom at 1,312 feet on the side of a mountain. There are two ways to get to the lodge; by way of the Via Ferrata, crossing the hanging bridge, or the intrepid path toward the ziplines. Your ‘room’ offers you a perspective unlike any other and grants you privileged views of the Sacred Valley by night and the endless Milky Way above. An unforgettable honeymoon experience you will definitely remember for a lifetime. Explore our Peru: Adventure in the Andes for more about this extraordinary adventure.
Camping among the ancient Maya
Stay overnight in your own private camp at an ancient Maya temple site – just the two of you. Your private guide will transfer you to Uaxactun to explore the main plaza, pyramids and temples. Uaxactun was a major Maya city situated about 12 miles north of Tikal. The most impressive ruin is the Structre E-VIIsub, the focal point for the plaza with three temples aligned along its eastern edge. Together these structures were used for astronomical studies. The equinox and solstice were accurately determined by sighting the sunrise from the eastern stairway to one of the three pyramids to the east. Watch the sun set in the company of an astronomy specialist. Then, you are in for a rare experience… glamping at Uaxactun – the perfect way to begin the adventure of your life. Guatemala and Colombia
Hike to the crater
For couples who have a passion for the outdoors, Gibb’s Farm in Northern Tanzania is a perfect honeymoon choice. You can hike in an extraordinary landscape. In the company of a naturalist, you venture out from the farm on a hike to the very rim of the Ngorongoro Crater, the world’s largest inactive, intact, and unfilled volcanic caldera. Walk through the conservation area that takes you into awe-inspiring, untouched forests to encounter unique plant life, animals and rare birds. Established in the 1920s as a coffee farm, Gibb’s Farm lets you get away from your everyday world with peaceful walks together in the nearby forest, afternoons of high tea, biking the back roads of Karatu, or simply relaxating with a personalized spa treatment in the privacy of your cottage. You can craft your Africa honeymoon to include this romantic property on journeys such as on our Tanzania into the Wild adventure.
Helicopter over coastal floodplains
Bamurru Plains, Australia
Explore Bamurru Plains, an extraordinary wilderness on the coastal floodplains of the Mary River Delta, during a helicopter flight. Enjoy stunning views from your helicopter with no doors. Return to your spacious and cool safari bungalow built on stilts overlooking the floodplains. Mesh screen ceiling to floor walls on all three sides around the bed provides you with an experience in which you can hear, see and almost touch the wildlife and wilderness around you. The bed features organic cotton linen and a pillow menu, spacious en suite bathroom with high pressure showers. The décor reflects the region’s earlier indigenous, hunting and pastoral history, with buffalo horns, explorer’s maps, Aboriginal art work and fish traps as well as old photos providing a sense of the human heritage of the area. Each room has a cold water thermos, local flora and fauna reading materials, species list and binoculars. The alarm clock in the morning comes from the call of magpie geese as the orange light of dawn spreads across the floodplain, all at your fingertips without having to leave your bed! With no internet access, no television or mobile phone coverage, your honeymoon will be a true escape. This remarkable property is featured on our Wild Australia journey.
Dear Retail Travel Partner,
No, this isn’t another government bailout. This is about the essence of partnership, where innovation and relationships come into play in the face of economic and geopolitical uncertainty.
Today we stand together yet again, this time in the face of an economic climate not seen in decades. As you are aware, the Canadian dollar is at one of its weakest points versus the US dollar, and this is combined with the suppressed oil prices.
Big Five is here for you and is proud to introduce our newest initiative – CAD Assistance. Through our experience working in the currency markets, Big Five is able to offer you some sorely needed aid, especially if you are the owner of your agency, and that is assurance.
Beginning this month, we are pleased to offer you a locked-in currency exchange rate of USD1 = CAD1.20. This applies to all NEW bookings where the departure date allows all payments to be made on or before September 30, 2015. The best part – if the CAD shows a period of strengthening where the market rate is better than our assured rate, then your prevailing rate will apply*. This means there is no downside risk for you because we looked out for you on both sides of the coin.
In 2008, Big Five opened operations in Canada because we believed in the Canadian market and the need to introduce sustainability and luxury to the Canadian traveller. Over the past few years, Big Five has forged amazing relationships with key partners such as you, delivering an award-winning product and revolutionary customer service through our premier 24 hour White Glove Service® Guest Assistance. In return, you have shared in our growth and successes over the years. Big Five remains committed to Canada and to our travel agency partners.
Today’s traveller is looking for an experiential luxury product that features sustainability and authenticity working in perfect balance. Big Five knows just how to deliver that and how to make you and your guests stand for something more. Becoming part of the larger solution is as easy as a click or phone call. Now with CAD assistance, it’s even easier.
See why our mission statement is as relevant as ever…
“We don’t tell stories better, we tell better stories”®
Nothing defines a nation and its people as effectively as its arts. From painting to dance to music to writing, creative expressions reveal the energy, culture, concerns and passions of its people. For art lovers, the museums and art galleries of the world add texture, knowledge and depth to their travel experiences. These gems of beauty and of information present an avenue of discovery into how a community thinks and what it values. In addition to museums, we can arrange for our travel guests to explore local art galleries if they are interested. Below are a smattering of fascinating and energetic museums for art lovers that can be incorporated into your itinerary.
Museo de Arte Latinoamericano de Buenos Aires (MALBA)
Buenos Aires, Argentina
MALBA, supported by Colección Costantini, is a private museum that opened to the public in 2001. It houses one of the most impressive collections of Latin American art. Exhibitions showcase such established artists as Antonio Berni, Pedro Figari, Frida Kahlo, Candido Portinari, Diego Rivera, and Antonio Siguí. Many of the works confront social issues and explore questions of national identity. From the first modern and avant-garde movements to the more contemporary productions of the late 20th century, the collection’s exhibition varies according to the Annual Program of Acquisitions and to the generous donations received from artists, their family members, and private collectors. Consider adding the interesting museum to our Argentina exploration
National Gallery of Modern Art (NGMA)
Mumbai‘s National Gallery of Modern Art has it all – from Picasso to relics from ancient Egypt. Without question, this is a premier art facility in India, and is the repository of the cultural ethos of the country showcasing the changing art forms through the passage of the last 150 years, starting about 1857 in the field of visual and plastic arts. The NGMA also houses one of the most significant collections of modern and contemporary art in the country. The idea of a national art gallery was envisioned about 1949, and the city welcomed it launch on March 29, 1954. For those interested, it is well worth a visit when touring Mumbai such as on this 13- day North India journey
Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa
Wellington, New Zealand
Te Papa in Wellington is New Zealand’s national museum, and is renowned for being bicultural, scholarly, innovative, and fun. Collections span five areas: art, history, Pacific, Māori and the natural environment. Exhibitions are interdisciplinary. This museum follows others that have developed programs for kids and families. The museum also offers exhibitions that speak about the traditional culture such “Tangata o le Moana: The story of Pacific people in New Zealand.”
Every 18 months to 2 years, another community is given the opportunity to present its story. Te Papa develops each exhibition in close cooperation with the community and has featured the Chinese, Dutch, Indian, Italian, and Scottish communities of New Zealand. An exhibition about refugees in New Zealand, The Mixing Room is the latest to be featured. For The Mixing Room Te Papa worked with 70 young people who came as refugees to New Zealand from 27 diverse communities so they could tell their stories in their own way through art, film, poetry, performance and digital media. Customize your New Zealand itinerary to include this fascinating museum.
Bangkok Art and Culture Centre
For the Asian art enthusiast, the Bangkok Art and Culture Centre (BACC) is a new mid-town facility that should be on your list. It offers views of contemporary arts with art, music, theater, film, design, literature and cultural/educational events. The BACC aims to create a meeting place for artists and the community to explore cultural continuity from past to present. It is intended as a venue for cultural exchange and to give Bangkok an operational base on the international art scene. This center gives you an opportunity to explore country’s art and culture. You can add this intriguing center in Bangkok on your discovery of Thailand.
National Art Gallery of Namibia (NAGN)
The National Art Gallery of Namibia is situated at the corner of Robert Mugabe Avenue and John Meinert Street in the capital city of Namibia. From the time of independence in 1990, interest in creating a National Art Gallery of Namibia began to grow. The NAGN formally came into being with the promulgation of the National Art Gallery of Namibia Act 14 of 2000. Today, it is a national museum, housing the Arts Association Heritage Trust Permanent Collection and the NAGN Permanent Collection. The NAGN also hosts contemporary exhibitions of local, national and international art.
The Permanent Collection is made up of approximately 270 contemporary art works of Namibian origin, and endeavors to mark noteworthy developments in Namibian art. The greatest part of the collection has been collected during group and individual exhibitions hosted by the NAGN. The selection process is based on conceptual and technical quality, and the relative contribution of the work to the body of Namibian art. The collection comprises work representing different disciplines including painting, sculpture, printmaking, drawing, mixed media, new media and outstanding works of craft. The collection demonstrates and contains the very best art works and within them are intuitive and uncommon pieces that are not only beautiful but significant within the history of Namibia. You can add this museum to your customized Namibia adventure.
The idea of walking for fun is a relatively recent idea. It started to become acceptable in the 18th century due to changing attitudes about nature. Prior to that, walking was considered something poor people and vagrants did. But a few men such as Thomas West, an English clergyman, helped popularize the concept by writing a guide to the Lake District in 1778; and other early proponents included a contemporary of West, the English poet William Wordsworth; and, in the 19th century, poet John Keats and writer Robert Louis Stevenson.
Fast forward to 2012 when the number of total outdoor outings by Americans reached an all-time high with Americans going on 12.4 billion outdoor excursions, up from 11.5 billion excursions in 2011.
Whether you are an avid outdoors person or just beginning, it’s time to put on your hiking boots and head out for the hike of your life.
Huilo Huilo, Chile
Huilo Huilo is a natural for outdoor enthusiasts. Set in the Patagonian Forest nestled on the north side of the river Puerto Fuy, it is near the “Salto de la Leona” waterfall. Here, you can opt for any one of 40 excursions by horseback, by bike, kayak, specialized vehicle or on foot! For trekkers, you have the option to enjoy hikes that offer a leisurely pace, or choose something more demanding. The Huilo-Huilo Reserve has multiple trails allowing through the Patagonian Forest, crystal rivers and lakes, flora and fauna, and volcanic formations at your own pace. At nightfall, armed with torches like the early explorers, you take a fascinating hike into a mysterious nocturnal world. Hike Huilo Huilo in our Chile’s Patagonia & Mapuche Culture
Phobjika Valley, Bhutan
Hike through this magnificent landscape of the valley of Phobjikha, part of one of Bhutan’s most important wildlife reserves. The valley is home to a flock of 300 rare and endangered black-neck cranes. You can enjoy other hikes on our 12-day Central Bhutan journey, including a hike to Cheri Goemba, the monastery where the first monastic body was established in the country, and a morning hike in Punakha Valley through fields of chilies, cabbages and rice that lining the banks of the Mo Chhu River. We can also incorporate other hikes for those interested. Begin by exploring Central Bhutan.
For serious hikers, you can’t beat this high altitude (3,850 m/12,600 ft) hike. The four-day trek – lodge to lodge – ends at spectacular Machu Picchu. The highest point on the trek is a pass at 4,600 m/15,000 ft., which offer views of the snow-capped peaks of the Vilcabamba Range, and the south face of Salkantay towering above you. Hiking level is considered difficult with that 15,000-foot mountain pass. But for the avid hiker, this truly is a Walk among the Ancients.
Hiking is the best way to experience the natural beauty of Zhangjiajie with many paths through the stunning sandstone landscape. It doesn’t take long to realize that this is the land of AVATAR. At Yellow Stone Mountain, take a cable car to the top of the mountain. Travel to the cable car launch traveling to Tianzi Mountain. Hike to the top for incredible views, sightseeing in Helong Park and Tianzi Tower. Discover Legendary China.
Mahale Mountains, Tanzania
Mahale Mountains is home to Greystoke Mahale, with just six wood and thatch bandas set on a pristine, white sandy beach overlooking the turquoise water of Lake Tanganyika, with the forested slopes of the 8,000-foot Mahale Mountains rising behind. Here, chimpanzees are the focus of your visit. Each day, the rangers advise you of the whereabouts of the chimp groups, and possibility of seeing them. In addition to tracking chimps, you can also hike forest paths looking for birds and butterflies, as well as the other shy mammals who quietly live there. For a chance to encounter these endangered animals that are closest living relative, explore Tanzania: Into the Wild.