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Asia, Central America, Europe, Middle East, South East Asia, Uncategorized

May the Fourth


It’s that wonderful day of the year where (us) sci-fi nerds from around the globe (and through the decades now as well!) get to celebrate the infamous May the Fourth! For those who are unaware, which would be scarce these days, “May the force be with you” is a famous line from a famous movie made by a famous director just over 40 years old, the Star Wars saga. Bit of a contentious issue with the Disney Corporation taking over the franchise a few years ago these beloved films have had some extremely exotic locations used to film some of the gorgeous scenery used in the movie.

To celebrate May the Fourth! in style we thought we would take a look back at some of the extraordinary places used for the iconic films, some of the ones that we have visited personally and some of the lesser known locations that are DEFINITELY worth a visit (or five).

Tikal, Guatemala

Going back to the very beginning, the star Maya ruins within Guatemala was used for the very first film and while all of the Mayan sites in Central America have their own individual unique selling points, Tikal was the capital of a civilisation plus a hub location for culture and commerce due to its locale within Guatemala. The Tikal National Park covers over 500 square kilometres and includes thousands of buildings buried under thick jungle, the main complex is made up of 4 main temples that rise steeply up to 44 meters high. To view the famous shot just climb Tikal IV (the only monument you can climb) to get a view of the other 3 temples- instantly recognisable if you’re a fan.

If you want to go spend time at this amazing ruin we’d suggest the Tikal & Semuc Champey Experience 6D/5N with Bamba Experience from AUD540 per person.

Phang Nga, Thailand

Probably best known for the James Bond Island (Koh Ping-gan), Phang Nga is the coastal province on the Western coast of Thailand, bordered by the Andaman Sea and a must-see for those who are visiting the country. Although the cameo appearance is small in the movies it is the background for the homeland of one of the most beloved characters- Chewbacca- and who needs more of an excuse to cruise around the beautiful Thai Isles. Just be aware that the monsoon season hits from mid-October to mid-April so a lot of establishments will shut for the wet period.

How about exploring the area on a Thai Islands Explorer 10D/9N, from AUD1230 per person

Reynisfjara, Iceland

Also known as Black Sand Beach, just south of the city of Vik on the very bottom of the island of Iceland, this area is well known to tourists for not only it’s black pebbled shore but also the striking basalt sea stacks against the cliff (similar to the Giants Causeway in Ireland). In typical Icelandic fashion the area is full of tales and wonder, keep an eye out for the trolls in the water turned to stone by the sun and for the fans this is location of the planet of Eadu used in the most recent Rogue One movie. As Iceland is now more and more accessible to the public we’d recommend heading there sooner rather then later to experience this unspoilt natural beauty.

To visit the trolls down South how about a short trip like the Iceland South Coast Adventure 2D/1N for AUD1105 per person

Guilin, China 

Considered the pearl of China, Guilin is a small prefecture in Southern China, tons of amazing things to see in the region makes its a top place for tourists to visit. Used to fill out Chewie’s home planet, there are lots to keep the wookies occupied here, plus the region is part of 72-hour visa free program- if you’re transiting through China and need somewhere to spend a few days then this may be the ultimate dream location. Amidst karst limestone landscapes, ethnic mountain villages and sprawling terraced rice fields, “East or west, Guilin scenery is the best” truly epitomises this picture perfect postcard location.

For those who want the full China experience how about trying the 8 Day Backpacking tour of China, Hong Kong to Chendgu from AUD759 per person.

Wadi Rum, Jordan

All the way to the very end of the Star Wars saga, the infamous desert of Wadi Rum has been used as the background of lots of famous movies but has also been used in the recent Rogue One movie. Wadi Rum, also known as Valley of the Moon, is a dramatic desert landscape full of twisting rock formations and spectacular sandstone mountains also occupied with wild Bedouin tribes and their camels. A highlight of any tour in Jordan includes spending a night in Bedouin camp watching the stars wheeling overhead in the midst of this extraordinary landscape.


To get the full experience of the region how about trying the Jordan Highlights Discovery 7D/6N from AUD1085 per person

Ask us about any of the above tours for up to date prices and availability.


Africa, Central America, North Americas, South America

Celebrating International Women’s Day! Top 5 destinations for the independent female.

International Women’s Day is celebrated around the world on March 8th and we’re looking to empower women across the globe. 

Women around the world play an extremely significant role in the travel and tourism industry. Today is International Women’s Day and we are celebrating by highlighting, what we think, are some of the best areas to visit as a female adventure traveller.


This exotic Caribbean isle is perfect for all types of travellers due to its amazing diversity. For those who want to relax on the beach with a cocktail in their hands (best mojitos in the world come from Cuba), to those adventurous types who want to explore the national parks all over the country to those who just want to wander through the scenic cobblestone city streets, Cuba is one of the most unique destinations to visit. Full of rum, cigars, music and old cars,  Cuba can satisfy all of your needs

Let Bamba whisk you away for the trip of a lifetime:

Price per person: AUD1430
Minimum number of passengers: 1


Ah Morocco, full of Arabian dreams, spiced coffee and majestic scenery. Picking up popularity for visitors due to it’s picture perfect Instagram locations this intoxicating country includes vibrant mosaic’d marketplaces, dramatic camel rides into the never-ending red deserts, charming beach towns and flavourful, perfectly spiced cuisine. Trek through the mountains or spend a night under the stars in a traditional camp, no matter what adventure you’re looking for Morocco will surely provide an experience never forgotten.

Explore this exotic destination with Bamba:

Price per person: AUD970
Minimum number of passengers: 1


The most popular country to visit in South America, Peru has a mix of deserts, beaches, jungles, mountains and the ever popular ruins (like the famous Machu Picchu). It’s a destination bucket list for a lot of people and with good reason. Plenty to see and do across the country, from walking the traditional Inca trek, to soaring over the majestic Nazca Lines to sea kayaking off the coast. Just one note beware of the llamas, they like to photo bomb!

Take on one of the toughest treks around:

Price per person: AUD980
Minimum number of passengers: 1


If you are unable (or unwilling) to spend the money on the traditional train journey in Western Canada there are tons of alternatives available for the single female traveller who wants to see the breathtaking sights that is Canada. Best time of year to visit is the Summer due to the long days and temperate weather plus there are tons of outside adventure activities to enjoy. Watch whales breach, kayak through clear blue lakes, hike through awe-inspiring scenery, enjoy maple taffy, let Canada fulfill all your adventure dreams.

Let Moose Travel help you enjoy the best of Canada:

Base price per person: AUD873
Minimum number of passengers: 1


With some of the most famous Maya archaeological sites (Chitchen Itza), some of the best food in Central America (pollo con mole for the win!) and natural wonders around every corner Mexico is a traveller’s dream. With just a basic smattering of Spanish you can explore the country to your hearts content, tasting and exploring across this diverse Latin America country, from the infamous Tijuana to the colonial Mexico City to the laid back Mayan riviera. Come and fall in love with Mexico!

Let Bamba entice your taste buds:

Price per person: AUD1300
Minimum number of passengers: 1

Ask us about any of the above tours for up to date prices and availability.

South America

Happy Like a Little Kid – Travels in South America – Buenos, Buenos Aires

For a long, long time Prague has been my favourite city, with Sydney a close second. But finally it has been usurped by BA…. what a city!

I would fully understand if somebody told me they didn’t like BA – it’s not middle of the road, it will inspire passion, in either direction. I loved it. I absolutely loved it. The architecture, the atmosphere, the nightlife, the restaurants, the locals, the tourists, the edge.

Naively, I was rather miffed when Aerolineas Argentinas cancelled my flight on Saturday from Ushuaia to BA, thinking “Well there goes my night out.” I was staying six nights, and had my first night pinned as my late night, a Saturday in one of the world’s great party cities. I needn’t have worried – 5am was the EARLIEST I got to bed between Sunday and Thursday nights.

But there is so much more to the capital than nightlife, the city literally pulses with an energy that is utterly intoxicating, exhilarating and Latino chilled all at the same time. European architecture fills the centro, football is omnipresent, particularly their beloved Boca Juniors, and the locals are as gorgeous as you’ve heard. Portenos / Portenas (literally port men / women) stroll the streets with a confidence that comes from knowing that you’re part of something special. Taxi drivers intersperse their horn blowing and attempts to sell you cocaine with the occasional burst of appreciation for an attractive lady that they are passing. It’s definitely not PC, but nobody seems to be perturbed.

There are people from all corners living in BA, and it is the very definition of cosmopolitan, but lined with an abrasive underbelly of poverty that is never too far from the surface. The regime of Videla still echoes through the city, and a fantastically informative and sensitive bike tour of the city lent real insight as to how it was during those years. We stop at a motorway underpass at a spot that was a bar that was turned into a detention / torture centre, and are shown a basic but incredibly moving monument to some of the many people who were ‘disappeared’ during the regime.

Uruguay is just across the Rio Plata (Silver River) and Montevideo or Colonia can both be easily visited as a day trip, although the ferries are not as cheap as you would expect. Milhouse Hostels (there are three – two in BA, and one in Cuzco) are legendary on the backpacker circuit in South America. Their travel desks can book everything from Tango Experiences to Guacho (cowboy) stays and tickets to La Bombonera to see Boca Juniors play. They also have daily activities that include Spanish lessons, cooking lessons, nightclub excursions, wine tasting and volunteering programmes.

Milhouse manages to balance the fine line between providing first class tourist services and an authentic local experience. The private rooms are better than most three star hotel rooms, the dorms are as good as it gets globally, and the included breakfast (assuming you’re up early enough) is pretty decent too. They’re big enough to provide everything you need, but retain a ‘cosy’ feel where you feel like the bar and reception staff are new friends. And no, I’m not being paid to write this, and I freely admit Bamba Experience works closely with Milhouse, but I’m not just doing a plug here – these guys get it – they understand the joy and hassles of travel, and have done everything they can to add to the experience. I spent time at all three of their hostels, and they all have their own flavour, but do a great job at enhancing your travel experience. Genuinely impressed.

Tango. Not just a part of the travel agent and fighter pilot alphabet 🙂

I hate dancing. I also hate lessons, or generally being told what to do. But BA is nothing if not seductive, so I found myself grinning like an idiot and actually enjoying the rhythm of the city as I tried to move to her steps. We had lessons, then practice, then a show with dinner and drinks…. my annoyingly good looking English companion was ‘randomly’ selected out of the crowd by the dancers all night, and wound up leaving with one of their hats. It is a city so sexy, so oblivious to your existence, that you find yourself swept up in the energy every evening. It looks forward to the next evening, not back with regret. You have to dance with BA, not watch from the sides. My favourite memory is dawn conversations with prostitutes at a late night cafe, over a bottle of Malbec. Completely safe, utterly fascinating and totally Porteno.

Legendary Boca Juniors stadium, La Bombonera (Chocolate box) The colours area a result of a dispute with other clubs -as Boca was the working class suburb near the port, they decided to adopt the colours of the next vessel that sailed in – which was from Sweden.

Some of the Centro’s stunning architecture

A street shot of San Telmo, BA’s oldest neighbourhood, and home to Boca Juniors.

Eva Peron

Best meat of my life – huge call – at La Cabrera. BA’s most iconic restaurant definitely lived up to the hype. Can not wait to go back!(Coincidentally or not, Porteno is my favourite restaurant in Sydney!)

Typical local restaurant – food weighed to determine price, and every cut you can think of on the grill. Cheap, cheerful, and fantastic.



However long you were thinking of spending here – spend longer. You still won’t want to leave.