Hop into great Easter deals

EASTER can be a great time for family get-togethers or simply a wonderful opportunity to escape the rat race for a luxurious long, long, weekend.

Whatever your desire, there are some great deals on offer at the moment to tempt you away from the telly and into the wonderful world of travel.

Here are some of the best deals we've found - many experiences are available right on our doorstep, with a few further afield for those with an itch to get right away from it all.

Fantaseas do come true

Romance on the “high seas” of Moreton Bay aboard the MV Fantasea Ammari combines the exclusivity of an elegant cruise ship with the intimacy and attentiveness of a smaller private charter boat, to create a truly unique cruising experience.

The three day, two night Easter cruise from April 10 - 12 takes in the beauty of Moreton Bay, Tangalooma, Stradbroke and the wrecks, allowing guests to relax onboard, take a four wheel drive tour of the island or book a snorkelling or diving tour.

Four levels of cruising luxury, attentive service, cuisine created from fresh regional produce, and an ever changing panorama are the simple pleasures to be enjoyed during an Ammari cruise.

The cost is $998 per person - but that's inclusive of all meals and a boatload of fun activities.

■ For more call (07) 3426 2520 or visit www.fantaseaammari.com.

Nothing faulty in Towers

The 4.5 star Towers of Chevron Renaissance in the heart of the Gold Coast is offering Easter accommodation in luxury apartments from $240 per night for a one bedroom apartment, two bedrooms from $265 and three bedrooms from $380 per night (with a minimum three night stay over Easter).

Be sure to visit the Chevron's amazing Beaches in the Sky - a series of lagoons, indoor and outdoor lap pools, sauna, spa, barbecue and lawn areas five levels above the main thoroughfare.

■ Call Towers of Chevron Renaissance on (07) 5584 8100 or visit www.chevrontowers.com.au.

Twin deals

Twin Waters has long been a favourite destination for families wishing to take advantage of the four-day Easter break.

This year both Novotel and Grand Mercure Apartments have deals offering a range of accommodation from luxurious three bedroom beach houses and apartments to family hotel packages.

Priced at $450 per night, the Grand Mercure beach houses feature large outdoor entertainment areas, gourmet kitchens and contemporary furnishings just a short walk from the surf.

Similarly equipped one and two bedroom apartments are also available from $225 per night and $300 per night respectively.

The newly refurbished 4.5 star Novotel Twin Waters Resort has a family package which offers a garden view king suite from $269 per night, and includes daily buffet breakfast for two adults and two children up to 15 years and two, three hour kids' club sessions.

Novotel guests also receive the added family-friendly benefits of 20 minutes complimentary internet access, use of the hotel's Kapla kids play area, free soft toy for children up to six years, a music download for kids up to 16 years and complimentary Nickelodeon cartoon network.

Guests at both properties have access to a wide range of recreational facilities including swimming pools, spas, barbecue facilities, a large man-made lagoon, windsurfers, catamarans, kayaks, water trampoline, beach volleyball, kids' bicycles and cricket sets.

Just an hour north of Brisbane and a short drive from the famous Australia Zoo, Twin Waters offers an ideal environment for a family escape.

■ Call 1800 072 277 or visit www.novoteltwinwatersresort.com.au.

Townsville triple

ACCOR Hotels is hoping even April fools and Easter bunnies will take up a triple decker Townsville bed and breakfast accommodation offer available during the month of April.

The offer is spread across Accor's three Townsville properties - Ibis, Mercure Inn and Grand Mercure Apartments - and includes the Easter holiday period.

Hotel Ibis is available for $109 per room per night including breakfast for two at the hotel's Sugatrain Lounge Bar & Café, and a free continental breakfast provided for kids under 12 during school holidays.

Mercure Inn is offering any room type for $129 per night which includes full buffet breakfast for two adults and two children.

Grand Mercure Apartments has one bedroom apartments and breakfast for two at the Sugatrain Lounge Bar & Café for $179 which includes a free continental breakfast for kids under-12 during the school holidays.

Hotel Ibis and Grand Mercure Apartments are located in Townsville's up-market Palmer Street precinct while Mercure Inn offers a four star resort-style getaway beside Lake Curralea.

■ Call 1300 65 65 65 or visit www.accorhotels.com.au to book online.

Cruise into Cairns

A Big Cat cruise, free breakfast, kids club, free internet access and a music download highlight a three night family Easter package at Novotel Cairns Oasis Resort.

The package, priced at $299 per adult, includes three nights accommodation for two adults and two children up to 16 years in a room with two double beds, daily buffet breakfast and a full day cruise to Green Island.

Included in the Big Cat cruise is a choice of snorkelling equipment for the day or a glass bottomed boat trip, kids guided island walk and wheelhouse tour and buffet lunch including free soft drink for children.

■ Call 1300 65 65 65 or visit www.novotelcairnsresort.com.au.

Bundy's laying it on

Only a four hour drive or 55 minute flight north of Brisbane, Bundaberg is easily accessible and offers a range of activities and affordable accommodation options.

Coopers Couples Retreat is offering a special three night Easter package at their four-and-a-half star retreat.

For just $650 per couple, enjoy accommodation in a deluxe air-conditioned spa room with private courtyard and secluded pool, relaxing barbecue dinner and a romantic candlelit dinner from your hosts, dinner at Les Chefs a la carte restaurant, two gold passes to the Bundaberg Rum Distillery and two tickets to the new Hinkler Hall of Aviation.

www.cooperscouplesretreat.com.au

Kellys Beach Resort is another popular beachside spot for families, and rates over Easter start at just $175 per night.

Situated one block from the beach, Kellys Beach Resort features 40 self-contained and stand-alone villa units. Resort facilities include pools, spa, sauna, tennis court, licensed restaurant, kiosk, tours desk, kids club (during holidays), yoga classes, in house masseuse plus bike and snorkel hire.

www.kellysbeachresort.com.au

North and south of Bundaberg, there are also some great deals to be had within a 90 minute drive of the city. For example, Mantra Pavillions Mirage on 1770 is available over the Easter period from just $170 per night for a one bedroom apartment, based on a minimum stay of three nights.

Situated at the Town of 1770, between Bundaberg and Gladstone, Mantra Pavillions Mirage on 1770 is the perfect base to explore this stunning stretch of coastline.

www.mantrapavillions.com.au

Another great option for an Easter getaway is Mantra Hervey Bay, a 90 minute drive south of Bundaberg, where rates start from just $130 per night in a hotel suite based on minimum stays of two nights and valid from April 10 to 19.

Enjoy excellent fishing, boating, kayaking and swimming at this charming seaside village, or pop over to nearby Fraser Island for some fun on the world's largest sand island.

www.mantraherveybay.com.au

Also located in Hervey Bay, BreakFree Great Sandy Straits has special deals over the Easter period from just $135 per night based on minimum stays of three nights in a one bedroom apartment.

Offering direct beach access, the resort features uninterrupted views of the bay and marina plus fabulous facilities including 25 metre lap pool and tropical style pool, tennis courts, bicycle hire, kids' playground, games room, sauna and more.

www.greatsandystraits.com.au

Or if you're after some extra special pampering, Peppers Pier Resort Hervey Bay is the ideal choice for an indulgent Easter escape with packages available from $210 per night based on a minimum stay of three nights in a one bedroom suite and valid from April 10 to 13.

www.peppers.com.au/Pier-Resort

■ For holiday and accommodation ideas in the Bundaberg region visit: www.bundabergregion.info or Fraser Coast visit www.frasercoastholidays.info.

Fraser Island awaits

Lazy days, discovering shipwrecks, going on night nature walks, chilling out with great food … welcome to Fraser Island, the largest sand island in the world and one of the most stunning World Heritage spots.

Fraser is a great spot for camping, but for those who feel like a little more luxury at Easter, Eurong Beach Resort's On The Beach package could be just the ticket.

Return barge transfers via River Heads (just south of Hervey Bay) or Inskip Point, two night's motel room accommodation as well as daily buffet breakfasts and dinners are included.

Prices start from $242 per person twin share.

Single and triple share packages and upgrades to two bedroom apartments, which can accommodate six people, are available.

■ Phone 1800 111 808 or visit www.eurong.com.

Melbourne foodie heaven


Ibis Melbourne, the city's premier economy style hotel, is on a budget holiday blitz, offering rates from just $139 per night with an upgrade to a one bedroom apartment and including a Foodies Dream Tour of the famous Queen Victoria Markets.

Enjoy accommodation for two in a newly refurbished one bedroom apartment including breakfast and complimentary tour, savouring the delights of Victoria's finest produce at the markets located a short walk from the Ibis.

The Ibis Melbourne's one and two bedroom apartments are amongst the best value in the city, complete with kitchenettes and spacious separate lounge areas, providing the luxury of hotel services with apartment style convenience. Superb décor and appointments provide premium style comfort at economy level prices.

■ Book the Ibis Foodies Tour package at Ibis Melbourne by phoning (03) 9666 0066 or visit www.accorhotels.com.au.

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