2019 was another big year for Webjet Exclusives. From train journeys through the Rocky Mountains, to cruises on Halong Bay and sightseeing trips in the shadow of Switzerland’s Matterhorn, Australians have truly embraced getting out into the unknown and exploring some of the world’s most spectacular destinations. As this year draws to a close and we start to plan adventures for the new year, we’re taking a look back at the most popular Webjet Exclusives tours of 2019 for some inspiration, and consider what other tours are set to impress in 2020.
Thanks to its fascinating history, exciting cities and beguiling countryside, China was understandably a top destination in 2019. The 11 day Highlights of China tour and 10 day Wonders of China tour both transported travellers back in time by taking in attractions such as the Great Wall of China, the Forbidden City, Tiananmen Square, the Shanghai Museum and the Temple of Heaven. The tours explore the big cities of Beijing and Shanghai, but also visit smaller, quainter cities such as Suzhou and Tai’an, enabling visitors to get a taste for China as a whole.
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Japan might be geographically a lot smaller than China, but there is so much going on here you could easily spend a year touring the cities and countryside and still not feel like you’ve seen it all. On this 15 day Discover Japan tour, you receive the best introduction to the country and see enough of the beautiful landscape and history-rich townships to whet your appetite for a return visit very soon. Visit the big and bustling cities of Tokyo, Osaka and Kyoto, as well as the smaller towns of Kanazawa, Shirakawa-go and Matsumoto, taking in numerous temples, castles and natural wonders along the way. This tour runs from March to November, allowing you to enjoy the warmer weather and, if you’re lucky, a showing of Japan’s famous cherry blossoms.
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Vietnam is always incredibly popular with Australian travellers, not just because of its proximity, but because of its incredible food, beautiful beaches, enticing countryside and energetic cities. On this 10 day Discover Vietnam tour with Halong Bay cruise, first-time travellers to this South East Asian country will get to experience the charm of Hoi An’s Old Town, the history of UNESCO World Heritage Site My Son, the exhilarating chaos of Ho Chi Minh City, and the almost incomprehensible scenery of Halong Bay. The tour also includes the chance to try your hand at cooking some signature Vietnamese dishes yourself, as well as plenty of opportunities to eat every kind of Vietnamese delicacy you can sink your teeth into.
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Over the last few years, Sri Lanka has risen through the ranks to become one of Asia’s must-visit destinations. And it’s really not hard to see why. On this 15 day Sri Lanka Discovery tour, experience for yourself why this country has become so popular, as you visit sites as Sigiriya Rock, the Dambulla Rock Cave Temple and the Temple of the Tooth, and striking pockets of countryside rich in native wildlife, such as Yala National Park (where you’ll get to enjoy a thrilling jeep safari). You’ll also get to delve into the heart of Sri Lanka’s tea country, journeying to the wonderfully picturesque town of Ella via train.
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Australians are always partial to a beach holiday, and this 10 day Singapore and premium all-inclusive Maldives package was a runaway hit in 2019. This resort deal begins with a few days of free time to explore Singapore however you like, with such sightseeing possibilities including Gardens by the Bay, iconic Orchard Road, Universal Studios on Sentosa Island, Merlion Park, Marina Bay Sand, and more hawker centres than you ever thought existed. Next, you’ll travel to the Maldives and settle into the award-winning 4-star Vakarufalhi Maldives. Here, complete relaxation awaits, with five days set aside for you to do as little or as much as you’d like. Beach holidays don’t get much better than this…
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Canada and Alaska
Another popular drawcard for Australian travellers this year was North America, with the wilderness of Canada and Alaska in particular appealing. Both the 14 day Highlights of the Rockies tour with Alaska Cruise and the 18 day Unforgettable Rockies tour with Rocky Mountaineer and Alaska Cruise were in hot demand this year, with each itinerary providing ample opportunity to explore the exceptionally stunning Rocky Mountains. Dive into the rugged mountains, lush valleys and impossibly blue lakes surrounding Banff and Lake Louise, experience the relaxed lifestyle of the west coast city of Vancouver, and capture the magic of the Inside Passage as you journey up to Alaska past glaciers, fjords and (if you’re lucky) marine wildlife.
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Egypt and the Middle East
There are few places richer in exotic appeal than Egypt and the Middle East. On the 13 day Best of Egypt tour, explore the cities of Cairo, Alexandria and Luxor, cruise down the Nile River, explore the Valley of the Kings and see the Kom Ombo temple. A 25 day Highlights of the Middle East tour will also take you down the Nile, but will also introduce you to the lost city of Petra in Jordan and the incredibly important cities of Jerusalem and Nazareth in Israel.
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Scandinavia and the Baltics
Northern Europe was a very popular destination this year, with the 19 day North Cape Discovery tour and 27 day Grand Scandinavia tour both standing out to travellers. Both tours feature a cruise around the Baltic Sea, and include stops at such big cities as Copenhagen, Tallinn, Helsinki, St Petersburg and Stockholm, as well as smaller coastal ports as Geiranger, Trondheim, Narvik and the North Cape, providing access to some truly rugged and wild scenery.
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Switzerland is on many the travel wish list. It’s breathtakingly beautiful, filled with friendly locals, and offers up some of the best cheese and chocolate you’ll find in the world. Along a 14 day Train Tour of Switzerland, you’ll get the chance to see all the highlights, including the exciting capital city of Zurich, the historic Old Town of Lucerne, the striking Lake Lugano, the luxury alpine resort of St. Moritz, the quaint town of Zermatt (located at the foothills of the Matterhorn) and so much more. By travelling across this country by train, you get to see Switzerland at its finest, as it is the mountains and villages that really make this country a jewel of Europe.
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Top Picks for 2020
Still looking for more inspiration for your 2020 travels? Well, Webjet Exclusives has plenty of upcoming trips and itineraries to suit any type of traveller. Every tour is designed to showcase the best of each destination, and some that are set to stand out for 2020 include a 18 day In Search of the Northern Lights tour, which includes a cruise along the Norwegian Coast as you chase the aurora borealis (a bucket list item if there ever was one). Prefer a warmer climate? A 24 day Egypt, Jordan and Turkey Grandeur tour takes in the very best of this exciting and exotic pocket of the world. And if you know that one of the most effective (and delicious) way of immersing yourself in any given culture is through its cuisine, then you’ll love the incredible range of just-launched food tours, which take you to destinations such as India, Morocco and Italy.
All of Webjet Exclusives’ tours include return international flights, all accommodation, daily breakfast and more, and will see you travel to the likes of Africa and Antarctica, to Europe and Asia. You can also snap up incredible resort deals, including some with stays in lavish 5-star hotels and resorts.