Grab great deals on a pampering wellness package at a Dubai desert resort, tiger tracking in India, exploring Kenya and Ethiopia, or skiing in Japan.
Take it easy or hit the trails
Jumeirah Bab Al Shams Desert Resort & Spa which was voted the UAE's "leading hideaway resort" at this year's World Travel Awards, has put together what it calls the "Ultimate Wellness Retreat". Starting on November 20, guests will spend six days and five nights enjoying the desert resort before leaving for Jumeirah's the Meydan, which overlooks the Meydan racecourse, for the final celebratory night.
The package costs from Dh9,000 per person (based on two people sharing) and includes: five-star accommodation in a double room; full board (a special menu has been created especially for the retreat); personal health assessment; daily group and personal fitness sessions; daily yoga, Tai Chi and meditation classes; complimentary use of all resort amenities; complimentary resort activities (including archery, horse riding, camel riding, star gazing and an "astrology experience"), free Wi-Fi access, and airport and hotel transfers.
For more information, call 00 971 56 789 4026 or visit www.jumeirah.com.
On the tiger trail
Reef & Rainforest Tours has introduced a new luxury tour in India that takes visitors - on foot - deep into Satpura National Park in Madhya Pradesh, one of India's least visited tiger reserves and the only reserve to allow walking safaris (prior to this, visitors had been restricted to vehicle or elephant-back safaris). The tailor-made tour, which also includes game drives in two of India's famous tiger reserves, Pench and Kanha, allows guests plenty of time to enjoy the fabulous and virtually tourist-free Satpura National Park, which is spread over 524 square kilometres and is also home to leopards, wild boar, sloth bears and a huge variety of birdlife.
Land-only prices start from £3,863 (Dh22,618) per person (based on two people sharing a double room) and include nine nights on a full-board basis, one night bed and breakfast in Delhi, roundtrip airport transfers, game drives in Kanha and Pench National Parks, and walking tours and game drives in Satpura National Park. The parks are open from now until July. For more information, call 00 44 1628 623 003 or visit www.reefandrainforest.co.uk.
Explore Kenya and Ethiopia on an 18-day comprehensive tour organised by Wild Frontiers that includes game viewing in Kenya's Samburu National Park, a visit to the Unesco World Heritage site of Lake Turkana and a trip to see the diverse ethnic groups of the region, crocodile and hippo spotting on the Rift Valley Lakes, and trekking in the Bale Mountains National Park, home to the Ethiopian wolf and nyala (African antelope). The journey ends in Addis Ababa. The land-only trip takes place next year from January 27 to February 13 and costs from £3,810 (Dh22,308) per person on a full-board basis, including the cost of government passes and permits, entrance fees and all transport in the tour itineraries. Visit www.wildfrontiers.com for more details.
A Japanese winter
Head to Hakuba, Nagano, for the ski season and stay in one of the 12 chic and cosy villas in the trendy Gakuto development. About a two-and-a-half-hour road or 90-minute journey by bullet train from Tokyo, Hakuba sits among high mountain ranges that receive more than 11 metres of snowfall annually. Hakuba has 10 ski centres with more than 200 runs (it hosted many of the downhill ski events of the 1998 Nagano Winter Olympics). Visitors can enjoy everything from skiing and snowboarding to trekking, mountain biking, paragliding and rafting, as well as visiting the small museums,temples and attractions.
Each villa has two bedrooms and two bathrooms, a double height living room, a fully equipped kitchen, and its own parking space. Winter prices start from 36,800 Japanese yen (Dh1,650) per night. Call 00 852 3105 2238 or visit www.gakutovillas.com for more information.