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  • Golden Compass New Zealand Freephone number 0800-132-385
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Dear Educational Travellers and Friends,  


Golden Compass group (April 2021) Derwent Bridge, Tasmania

We trust that this, our latest newsletter, finds you safe and well.
 

We fully appreciate that for many of you the Christmas and New Year period may have been a testing one, with the latest variant of Covid-19 causing problems and disruptions everywhere. However, it now seems that here, as in the rest of the world, the peak of this disruptive virus has passed and at long last we can look forward to our borders opening up again and ahead to the realistic prospect of safe travel in 2022.
 

Understanding that a number of you may be a little anxious about travelling far from home, we also know that many of you are greatly missing the opportunity of exploring our fascinating world and are more than keen to continue your journey of discovery. Although it may take several more months before 'normal' international travel resumes, in anticipation of the world opening up we have created a number of tours, both within Australia and further afield for your consideration. We hope that you can re-join us on your wonderful adventure, knowing that we have not just your fulfilment but also your safety at heart.
 


Queen Elizabeth II

Within Australia, we are again offering our fascinating Wonders of Tasmania tour in early April and details are now available on our website. We have our popular Legendary Outback Track Safari in South Australia and Birdsville in April and October. We'll also be offering you a dramatic Red Centre Discovery in May, sub-tropical Norfolk Island in August, and beautiful Western Australia: Wildflowers & Heritage in October, details of which are on our website.
 

Further afield, we decided to re-commence our overseas adventures in the British Isles, where Mark Goodwin, our European Director, whom many of you know, has been creating a number of exciting tours for you and we are confident he will be able to ensure your care and safety. The rate of vaccination in both the United Kingdom and Ireland is amongst the highest in the world and there is an even more special reason to visit London in 2022. This year our Queen celebrates her Platinum Jubilee, an event unique in British history, so that Mark, as you might expect, has planned a program which allows you to join his countrymen, along with visitors from around the Commonwealth, in celebrating this very special occasion in London. He has also created tours which allow you to visit the rejuvenated Chelsea Flower Show, to explore the stunning Emerald Isle, to hop between the most beautiful Scottish Islands and to discover his traditional homeland of Wales. By popular demand, we have also revived our Summer of British Showstoppers, which takes us to performances of the Bard in Stratford-upon-Avon, to the opera in gorgeous Glyndebourne and to nights at the Proms in London. What better way to once again start soaking up the culture we have all so missed?
 

Each of these tours offers the opportunity to travel with a small group of like-minded people and to experience a different region with the expert guidance and insights of our outstanding local guides and the care of our ever-popular program leaders.
 

Places on these tours are limited so please take a look at them now and don’t wait to enrol.


Chelsea Flower Show

Commences London 24 May and ends London 30 May 2022

Program Leader - Mark Goodwin


Chelsea Flower Show

The famous Chelsea Flower Show was cancelled in 2020 and was held in the English Autumn of 2021 but we have full hopes for a return of this pride of the Royal Horticultural Society to its usual spectacular springtime show in 2022.We include a full day’s visit to this most prestigious event in the gardening calendar, which takes place in the grounds of the Royal Hospital Chelsea. We also include visits to Hampton Court, Kew Gardens, RHS Wisley and a garden-expert guided tour of London to include the Chelsea Physic Garden.

Price from: $3,990
Single Supplement: $840

Click here to find out more


Royal London

Commences London 30 May and ends London 06 June 2022

Program Leader - Mark Goodwin


Balcony of Buckingham Palace after Trooping of the Colour

HM Queen Elizabeth II came to the throne on 6 February 1952 and and no other British monarch has celebrated a Platinum Jubilee! To mark her 70-year reign, the Platinum Jubilee will take place this year with celebrations centred around an extended weekend at the beginning of June. Buckingham Palace will be co-ordinating a program of events, including a Big Jubilee Lunch, a Platinum Pageant, a Birthday Parade, a concert at Buckingham Palace and the lighting of beacons throughout the United Kingdom and the Commonwealth.

As with recent royal occasions, Golden Compass Tours invites you to join in this once in a lifetime event, with the people of the United Kingdom and Commonwealth coming together in London to celebrate Queen Elizabeth’s long service to Britain, Australia and New Zealand.

Price from: $4,750
Single Supplement: $980

Click here to find out more


Discover Ireland

Commences Dublin 06 June and ends Dublin 24 June 2022

Program Leader - Mark Goodwin


Giant's Causeway

Ireland is a lush green island full of thatched cottages, friendly pubs, music, poetry, ebullient people and dramatically diverse rugged countryside. We explore this captivating land - with its age-old fortresses and abbeys, quaint country towns, stately cities, dramatic islets and fascinating landscapes – and experience the history, people and natural heritage of Ireland.

Our program ranges from the bustling capital of Dublin to the greenness of Killarney with its rugged Dingle and Kerry peninsulas; from the natural beauty of the Connemara to the rugged northwest with County Donegal's quintessential villages and national park; from the dramatic Isle of Inishmore, with its spectacular cliff-top ring fort, to the craggy and mystical Giant's Causeway in the north. With colourful local guides, we will learn about Ireland's rich heritage as we explore Dublin and the Wicklow Mountains, Cork, Limerick, historic Galway, Yeats’ Sligo, Donegal, Derry and Belfast.

Price from: $9,900
Single Supplement: $1,990

Click here to find out more


Discover Wales

Commences Cardiff 02 July and ends Cardiff 16 July 2022

Program Leader - Mark Goodwin


Snowdonia

The outstanding natural beauty, varied landscapes - from dramatic peaks to quaint seaside resorts, a distinctive Celtic heritage and a fine range of impressive castles, ruined abbeys, mansions and cities full of magnificent architecture have long attracted visitors to Wales. Renowned as a country of spectacular scenery and a vibrant culture, specialising in male voice choirs, poetry, and a passionate love of team sports, Wales has now emerged from the yoke of its larger neighbour, and gained a degree of partial devolution. Welsh is an expansive and musical language and a longstanding oral tradition has produced many outstanding public speakers, politicians and actors. Welsh heritage is also steeped in song, music, poetry and legend: a tradition preserved by bards, minstrels and poets, often associated with druids, and celebrated in 'Eisteddfods', festivals of Welsh culture.

Price from: $7,900
Single Supplement: $950

Click here to find out more


Scottish Island Hopping

Commences Glasgow 17 July and ends Edinburgh 05 August 2022

Program Leader - Peter Burns


Isle of Skye

Scotland has over 700 islands scattered around its coastline, each with its own individual character, identity and charm.

We explore these islands with their sea-lochs, limestone grasslands dotted with sheep and cattle as well as crofts abandoned during the Highland Clearances. We learn about ancient standing stones and brochs. We experience the culture and heritage of the Scottish islanders as we stay in comfortable family-run hotels and guest houses and cruise to some of the country’s most isolated islands to experience some of the most awesome scenery in the British Isles.

Price from: $13,500
Single Supplement: $2,550

Click here to find out more


A Summer of British Showstoppers

Commences London 07 August and ends London 23 August 2022

Program Leader - Mark Goodwin


Royal Albert Hall, London

As Summer comes to England, our minds turn towards glorious Summer Festivals: the wonderful series of BBC proms at the Royal Albert Hall, a night out at the opera at Glyndebourne and to the summer performances of The Bard at the Royal Shakespeare Company in Stratford and the the Globe in London. Our program combines these inspiring events into a summer symphony of culture and allows you to sit back and relax whilst enjoying some stunning performances of drama and music.

However, our musical and dramatic pursuits do not prevent us from enjoying some of the best scenery England has to offer. Our program includes special expert introductions to the Shakespeare performances attended and to the opera viewed. We also include a performance of one of London's more contemporary showstoppers.
 

Price from: $11,750
Single Supplement: $1,990

Click here to find out more


In addition to our tours of the British Isles, we are offering the following tours within Europe. These will include our Icelandic Discovery in June with a chance to add an exhilarating extension to Greenland, our European Alpine Discovery in June, our Cities of the Hapsburgs with Oberammergau in August, our Trans-Caucasus Journey, Undiscovered Italy, Taste of Campania and Highlights of Germany in September.

In Asia, we will be offering a comprehensive new tour to the experience the Tastes and Treasures of Taiwan in October, followed by our always popular Japan Autumn Colours. Our new and exciting Highlights of Israel and Jordan will be in November followed by a chance to continue on with our popular Oman and Dubai: An Arabian Adventure. More details and newsletters will follow on these very soon but please keep an eye on our website and our Facebook page for more details, as they become available.

We are looking forward to many more years of providing you with exciting travel opportunities and we continue our work to compile a wide range of tours for the rest of 2022. This information will appear progressively on our website and via newsletters in the coming few weeks and months.

We look forward to welcoming you on another Golden Compass Tour packed with companionship and fulfilment. In the meantime, stay safe and well.
 

Kind regards,
 

Kerry, Alison and the best team of Program Leaders:
Andrea, Ann, Bruce, David, Dianne, George, Hugh, Jim, Louise, Mark, Ngaire, Peter, Robyn and Ruth

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Inclusive of field trips, local guides, gratuities and many meals.