Wednesday, 4 November 2015

Unique Journey's: Foodie River Cruising

Being in the travel industry and talking travel all day gives me some unique insights. I am constantly surrounded by the latest travel trends, get first hand feedback from hundreds of travellers every year and am bombarded with industry reps touting their travel products and don’t forget the familiarisation and personal travel I undertake every year. 

All too often I see people fall into the trap of taking uninspired holidays. In this Series “Unique Journey's” I am focusing on bringing you unique experiences worldwide. One of a kind getaways and fascinating experiences to get you seeing travel from a new perspective. 

The experiences and properties you will see recommended here are not sponsored they are brought to you from my many years experience as a travel consultant. 

I have spoken in the past about the emerging trend of travel specifically designed with Foodies in mind. It started as a murmur with adventure orientated tour companies bringing out a small program of foodie departures which is growing rapidly and now we have the big players in the Australian luxury touring market jumping into the game. Australian company APT have a number of departures for 2016 that are bringing together food, wine and travel, just the way life should be.

APT are taking the concept one step further. Their hosted trips will bring experts right to you, on location, what could be better than that. Being the obsessed world food cook that I am I think the Mekong River Cruise hosted by Vietnamese/Australian chef Luke Nguyen is genius. There is no better destination for travel from a foodie perspective. I have said on many an occasion that if there was only one cuisine left in the world to eat I would want it to be Vietnamese, all the fresh herbs, steaming broths and complex flavours it is a foodie's nirvana. Starting in Saigon, Luke will escort you through the neighbourhoods to be a part of the hustle and bustle. Watch locals cooking up street food, meet Luke's extended family and participate in a cooking class with Luke himself. Finish up day one with a degustation dinner inspired by Luke. What a personal experience, so unique I have never really seen an itinerary like it. Luke will spend two days with guests in Saigon and another three days on the river cruise as you float through this fascinating country and on to Cambodia. Luke will also participate in a "get to know Luke" session where you can learn more about him and his passion for food, unique access to a public personality.  Anyone who knows Luke Nguyen's SBS television shows and his quality cookbooks will know that this will be a top class trip.

APT are also embarking on a number of European River Cruise departures aptly named the "Wine Ambassador Series" . Now I can't pretend I am a great lover of wine but I have had the privilege of cruising the waterways with APT and I can vouch that it is a unique way to see Europe and a once in a lifetime trip. These special river cruise departures incorporate expert vintners from across Australia with some of Europe's premier wine destinations and should be top of the bucket list for any curious wine connoisseur. The departures are spread across a wide selection of destinations including France, Spain, Germany, Portugal, Netherlands, Australia and Hungry and all aboard APT's luxury 5 star river cruise ships, your floating hotel.

Still on the European River Cruise theme APT also offer a French itinerary on the Rhone River with a Gourmet Traveller host where the activities are geared towards food enthusiasts. A decadent gourmet feast at L’Abbaye de Collonges, a restaurant owned by the famous Michelin-starred chef, Paul Bocuse should be enough to pique your interest or how about an exploration of Lyon's food markets, something I have done and can highly recommend. Just check out these to die for photos I took in the markets in Lyon, you would never see food presented this way in Australia.

From the perspective of an avid epicure and keen world traveller these moves to cater for the foodie market is thrilling. It is something I have seen slowly growing for a few years now and can only hope it is here to stay. Based on the reaction from customers when presented with a unique travel option such as these I think it just might have some staying power in a ever fickle industry.

Originally posted on Wednesday, 4 November 2015 by


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