Author Archives: Richard Parks

The Bluefields Basic School, Jamaica needs your help!

Magic can occur when completely unexpected! Last May we were contacted by previous guests who asked how they could make the most meaningful impact with a US$25,000 donation to the Bluefields Basic School. We were totally astounded by their generosity! After much discussion, the donors and community agreed that a school with no access via paved road is unacceptable. Students aged 3-5 must trudge up muddy stone-filled tracks to reach their school, often alone. In addition, the school sits next to a large sports field that will finally become accessible for community games, concerts and events.

We solicited quotes for the project, and, after a thorough vetting process, located a contractor whose work we trust. Thanks to the generosity of the Pearson family, we are already halfway to full funding. We hope to raise the rest of the necessary $51,267 by late October so this paved road can become a reality in late November.

We do not expect large sums. Thousands of people have visited Bluefields Bay over the past 30+ years and many have grown fond of the place and its people, so we hope to reach the “finish line” with many modest gifts. Donations are tax-deductible as they are made to the Bluefields Environmental Protection Association (BEPA), a registered charity in both Jamaica and the United States.  And please rest assured that every donated dollar will be used to pave this new road.

Please click here if you would like to help!

Please help get Pearson Lane built.  We look forward to sharing this fantastic project with you when you next visit Bluefields Bay!

All the best,
Debbie & Houston

Garuda Indonesia to close non-stop Jakarta-London service

National flag carrier Garuda Indonesia will cease all non-stop flights serving its Jakarta-London route on Oct. 28, the airline has announced on its Twitter account (@Garuda_UK).

“With regret, we inform you that starting Oct. 28, Garuda Indonesia will no longer serve the non-stop London-Jakarta and Jakarta-London routes,” the airline posted.

Garuda also said it was coordinating with its partners to assist passengers who were affected by the service’s termination, including rerouting them on flights through Amsterdam and other alternative routes.

“The London-Heatrow-Amsterdam-Jakarta [route] will continue to operate six times a week,” the airline tweeted. It also advised passengers seeking to reschedule or to cancel their flights to contact the agency or outlet where they originally purchased the tickets.

“For passengers who bought tickets through UK Garuda Indonesia website, please email to: e-booking@garuda-indonesia.com or call to 0062 212 3519999,” the post said.

The Jakarta-London-Jakarta non-stop service opened in October 2017. (bbn)

News Feed Jakarta Post

Lombok’s Mount Rinjani will stay closed for one year

Lombok’s Mount Rinjani will be off limits to trekkers for an entire year.
The head of the Rinjani National Park Sudiyono, said it will take that long to repair hiking trails to ensure safe accents to the 3,700 metre peak.
“Many climbing trails are cracked and very dangerous to climbers and it takes about a year for repair works to be done to enable mountain climbing activities to continue,” he said.
It comes as a major blow to the local economy which is heavily reliant on tourism, as Lombok struggles to rebuild after a series of catastrophic earthquakes, and more than 1,500 aftershocks since late July.
The August 5 quake alone killed nearly 500 and wrought devastation on a wide area of North Lombok where Mount Rinjani is located.

Many mountain guides based in Senaru village, which is the main base for Rinjani treks, have already seen their homes badly damaged or destroyed in the first quake, and will be especially fearful for the future with no tourism revenue for at least a year.
Mount Rinjani, Indonesia’s second highest volcano, is a major draw for travellers in North Lombok.
It is second only to the Gili Islands for tourist numbers, which were also badly hit by the August 5 quake.
Hundreds of climbers were stranded overnight on the mountain when the first earthquake struck and one Malaysian climber died inside a collapsed building.
Sudiyono said plans will be discussed to develop alternative tourism options in the park.
The Rinjani National Park covers a huge portion of North Lombok and has a wealth of soft trekking options such as numerous waterfalls, jungle treks, Sembalun Valley agritourism and even paragliding.
However these have all never been promoted outside the local market and are largely unknown internationally.

News provided by Travel Mole

News from Kerala from our contacts Hi Tours

Please note the rainfall intensity over “God’s Own Country” as state of KERALA is popularly known, has decreased over the past 2 days bringing some respite to the badly flood-hit state. The India Meteorological Department (IMD) has withdrawn the red alert from all 14 districts. The Met department has said that rainfall activity over Kerala is likely to decrease further gradually, except for some isolated pockets in Kozhikode, Kannur and Idduki districts over the next 4 to 5 days.

All disrupted Train services are back to normal.

Cochin International Airport is busy with repair & cleaning of the terminal building in full swing. Though there is no official date but looking at the speed and spirit of work, we expect the Airport to start partial operations by 26th Aug and to be in full swing by end of this month.

In the meantime, Government of India has allowed to use Naval airport at Willingdon Island to operate domestic flights by Alliance Air & Indigo Airlines, operating ATR aircrafts to Chennai, Coimbatore and Bangalore.

As ever, safety of our guests and our team members remain our top concern and our team members in Kerala & Delhi can be contacted at +91 8130295933 or +91 9958446907 anytime for any questions or assistance, we will update you if there is any further development which might need your attention.

We offer our deep sympathies to those affected by the situation and we hope that life in Kerala will be back on track by first week of September.

 

Tourism Ministry launches ‘Bali Hot Deals’ to attract foreign tourists

In a bid to boost tourism and attract foreign tourists, the Tourism Ministry has launched “Bali Hot Deals” promotion packages, as reported by Antara news agency.

The ministry’s division 1 deputy of marketing development, I Gde Pitana, said in a statement that the Bali promotion was part of the Visit Wonderful Indonesia (ViWI) 2018, a program initiated by tourism stakeholders and associations.

“ViWI 2018 aims to strengthen three important elements for tourists, namely accessibility, attractions and amenities,” I Gde Pitana said, adding that the newly launched Hot Deals promotions featured these elements.

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