The Erne Travel Blog

  

Coronavirus Travel Update

Written by 
  • 12 November 2020

As we continue to operate through these unprecedented and testing times, we want to assure that you, our valued customers, are updated regularly on the information regarding the impact the pandemic has had on the travel industry.

If you have any questions regarding your current or future travel plans, please do not hesitate to speak to a member of our team on 02866 324477 or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Erne Travel Opening Hours

Monday – Friday 10:00 - 14:00

Saturday: Closed

Sunday: Closed

Airport Coronavirus Testing

Please be aware that certain destinations or airlines may require a negative Covid certificate or a fit to fly certificate in order to travel.  It is imperative to check this information before confirming any travel arrangements and our teams are able to assist with this information, please contact us on 028 6632 4477 or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

General Travel Guidance

The Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office (FCDO) provides guidance on COVID and non-COVID risks overseas. The FCDO currently advises against all but essential travel to many countries and territories on the basis of COVID risks. You should check the travel advice for your destination.

For the most up to date information you can check various resources below for quarantine and entry requirements or contact one of the team.

 https://www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice

https://www.iatatravelcentre.com/world.php

https://openupforbusiness.com/

Stay at Home Sightseeing

Written by 
  • 03 April 2020

While the world of travel has been put on pause for now, there’s nothing to stop you engaging in a bit of armchair travelling with us, before we can get back to exploring our wonderful planet again. We’ll be taking you to some of the world's most popular, surreal and magical destinations from across the globe, to give you that brief escape that we are all in need of.

So, sit back, relax and take in the world with us, all from the comfort of your own home.

Coronavrius Travel Update

Written by 
  • 28 February 2020

With cases of Coronavirus being reported in specific locations in a number of countries throughout the world, it is very important that travellers are aware of affected areas and stay up to date with Foreign Office travel advice.

The FCO currently advises against all but essential travel.
Travellers are advised to stay up to date with the UK Foreign Office travel advice which is updated regularly here.
This is a very Fluid changing situation and you should check with our teams on any specific destination.

Norad Travel Group are constantly in contact with all major representatives of the industry and working on several innitiatives to assist in the restart of travel.

Please follow links to World mapping and updates of Countries Data on the pandemic. The interactive service provides you with the information you need to start planning your next business trip or vacation, as we all start to open up for business.

 

If you have any questions regarding Coronavirus travel advice, are travelling near affected areas, or have a specific question regarding your holiday booking, please do not hesitate to contact us.

Travellers should also keep up to date on local advice during their visit. 

Travellers should also keep up to date on local advice during their visit. 

 

Coronavirus FAQ

Q:What happens if my travel plans are affected?
A: Your travel plans may be affected in different ways, depending on Foreign Office advice. If the Foreign & Commonwealth Office advises against travel to a destination and your holiday arrangements have been affected, your travel provider will get in touch and advise you of the options open to you. Travellers are advised to read the Foreign & Commonwealth Office travel advice for the country they are travelling to, which includes a link through to the National Travel Health Network and Centre (NaTHNaC) TravelHealthPro website that provides specific travel health advice for countries. The Foreign Office also has a specific page with more information on Coronavirus.

Where the Foreign Office advises against travel to a country or a specific resort or area of a country the following applies:

Q: Does my tour operator have to refund the full package or only the parts of my holiday that are cancelled?
A: Tour operators can offer alternative holidays if they are able to. If these mean a significant change to the original arrangements, for example spending the whole or part of the holiday in a different country, you aren’t obliged to accept the alternative and will be entitled to a full refund of the package price.  

Q: When am I not entitled to a full refund? 
A: If you have booked a package and are not due to travel imminently, tour operators will decide on an ongoing basis how far in advance they’ll begin offering alternative arrangements or providing refunds. The Foreign & Commonwealth Office advice is in relation to imminent departures and it is too early to say that your holiday can’t go ahead as planned. Therefore, customers with future departure dates will be required to wait to find out whether the advice changes and their holiday can continue as planned. If you cancel early you may have to pay cancellation charges.

Q: If I cannot follow my initial travel plans due to the Coronavirus outbreak, am I entitled to compensation?
A: You won’t be entitled to any compensation, as the reason for the holiday not continuing is outside the control of the tour operator. 

Q: I’ve booked a flight to a country where the Foreign Office currently advises against all but essential travel to a country or a specific resort or area of the country, what are my rights?
A: Speak to your airline or travel provider to check what the airline’s policy is. You should also check your travel insurance to see if this will cover any additional costs. 

Q: What if I'm unsure about going on my holiday?
A: Most destinations do not have any British Government advice against travel. If there is no advice against travel to your destination, if you don't want to go, you’re free to make that choice, but there's no obligation on your holiday company to give you a refund. Normal cancellation charges will apply. It is highly unlikely that you will be able to claim any cancellation charge on your insurance as there isn’t normally cover for disinclination to travel but you can check the terms of your policy. 

If you have any questions regarding Coronavirus travel advice, are travelling near affected areas, or have a specific question regarding your holiday booking, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

On Board the Brand New Scarlet Lady from Virgin Voyages

Written by  Luke Judd
  • 28 February 2020

Earlier this week, our cruise expert Charlene was lucky enough to get an exclusive sneak preview of the incredible new ship from Virgin Voyages, The Scarlet Lady. Charlene travelled over to Liverpool docks to experience this brand-new cruising experience first-hand, and it looks like it set quite a good first impression…

Virgin’s new 17-deck ship certainly has the wow factor from the first-time moment you see it docked port.

Scarlet Lady at Night Photo by Dave Mort

Scarlet Lady in Liverpool Docks, Photo by Dave Mort

The large red LED lights display welcome and farewell messages across the side of the boat. The extravagance and modern style does not end there though. The scarlet lady is bold in design with its striking red and white Virgin colours a constant theme throughout. There is a minimalist and modern interior design style in the common areas and cabins. This ship really does have a state of the art and very trendy feel to it.

Scarlet Lady, Balcony Cabin

My cabin on board the Scarlet Lady

Scarlet Lady, Balcony View

My balcony view <Insert Caribbean sunshine here>

The outside areas are furnished with hot tubs and cool cabanas, perfect for relaxing on this ‘Adults Only’ playground at sea. There are loads of outdoor daybeds, so you catch some Caribbean sun. although they weren’t particularly ready for use on a cold, rainy, February day in Liverpool!

Scarlet Lady Outdoor Areas, Virgin Voyages, Erne Travel

Virgin have completely revolutionised the cruise dining experience onboard the Scarlet Lady with no buffets in sight! There are more than 20 eateries and restaurants onboard - from Brunch Bars to Swanky Restaurants run by Michelin Starred Chefs. Food is all freshly made to order, meaning no waste.

Scarlet Lady Restaurants, Virgin Voyages

Just a few of the many restraurants on board the Scarlet Lady

I was lucky enough to get a place in the incredibly tasty Mexican restaurant ‘Pink Agave’. We were able to choose the amount of courses we wanted (yes, as many as you like!) and were advised perfectly by or own waitress, Ana, who encouraged us to sample and share our food round the table. All food, and gratuities, are fully included in your cruise fare! As for drinks, the onboard motto is ‘only the best brands for the best people’. You pay for what you drink and if you don’t drink – water, soft drinks, tea & coffee are all free.

Pink Agave, restaurant onborad Scarlet Lady, Virgin Voyages

Our meal at Pink Agave

One of the main aspects Virgin has tried to incorporate on the Scarlet Lady are its “Well-being” offerings. Whether you want to sweat or chill, it’s up to you. If you’re up for a bit of self-pampering this hip ship has got the lot. Try ‘Dry Dock’ for a blow dry or even ‘Squid Ink’ for tattoo reminder of your fabulous cruise!! The Redemption Spa is a haven of tranquillity and self-preservation. Get dirty in the mudroom, let the sauna cleanse you, or spend an entire afternoon floating from hot stone massage to seaweed wrap.

If you’re not one for sitting around all day, there is a state-of-the-art gym onboard as well as a running track and boxing ring! You can then rest your mind and body with sunrise and sunset yoga at “The Perch”. Don’t forget to treat yourself post-workout with a fresh pressed juice from one of the juice bars on deck.

Boxing ring onboard the Scarlet Lady, Virgin Voyages

Boxing ring onboard the Scarlet Lady

Virgin have really upped the game in the entertainment department too. The “Red-Room” is moving away from classic Broadway productions, with the entertainment onboard more akin to a festival line-up. Expect immersive, contemporary shows developed by world-famous producers, choreographers and directors. We were treated to an incredible, Romeo & Juliet inspired, acrobatic show during our stay!

entertainment onboard the Scarlet Lady, Virgin Voyages

Our view of the acrobatic show & partying in the nightclub later that night

To conclude, my 24 hour stay on the Scarlet Lady definitely had the WOW factor. This is the best new cruise for adults, young or young at heart. The Scarlet Lady is a wonderful ship with delicious food (not a buffet in sight), friendly and helpful staff, amazing entertainment and nightclub to end the night. This trendy and state of the art ship is new-age cruising and a foodie’s paradise.

Erne Travel onboard the Scarlet Lady, Virgin Voyages

Scarlet Lady Features

- Adults Only Cruise Line

- Buffets are banned. More than 20 eateries onboard - from Brunch Bars to Swanky Restaurants run by Michelin Starred Chefs
1330 Cabins & 78 Rock Star Suites - with chic and modern interiors

- Major focus on wellness; with spas, gyms, yoga and wellness pools and even a mud room onboard - plus beauty treatments

- Moving away from classic Broadway productions, the entertainment onboard is more akin to a festival lineup, with immersive, contemporary shows developed by world-famous producers, choreographers and directors.

- Wifi, Gratuities, Group fitness classes & "basic bevvies" are included in your cruise fare

Things to do on board 

- Enjoying the view with some peace and privacy in a tranquil cabana.

- Going for an invigorating dip in the cold plunge pools

- Making new friends and sampling a number of themes and music styles at the various nightclubs, such as The Manor, as well as onboard parties.

- Relaxing in the sun on the largest lounge bed at sea.

- Participating in a range of fitness sessions to get your blood pumping at the modern gym, running track or training camp.

- Mind and body in perfect harmony with sunrise and sunset yoga.

- Hot tubs set just right to ease those tired muscles.

- Treatments at the Redemption Spa and a manicure and pedicure at The Tune Up salon.

- A visit to Stubble & Groom, the onboard barbershop.

- The juicery program where you can grab a clean and healthy juice.

Charlene’s Top Tip

The Scarlet Lady will be sailing from Miami from 1st April 2020 doing 4 & 5night sailings, calling in at Virgin’s own Bimini Beach Club – perfect for the sunny beach day, chilling listening to world class DJ’s.  Ideally you can pre-night in Miami, or extend your stay in Florida once ashore again, with daily flights there are endless possibilities…

 

Speak to Charlene and the team about cruising on board the Scarlet Lady

Contact us today:

028 6632 4477
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Send us a private message on Facebook

Family Adventure Holidays

Written by 
  • 14 February 2020

Family adventure holidays are the perfect blend of action and adventure, but most importantly fun. The world’s most exciting natural environments make for perfect adventure playgrounds, whether it's walking on Mount Etna, enjoying a delicious pizza on the Amalfi Coast or trekking the Sahara Desert, family adventures are not one to be missed. 

 

shutterstock 1236732937

So, would you and your family like an exciting adventure? We've collected some amazing adventure family holidays, containing a range of exhilarating activies, combined with must see sights. An unmissable experience for all the family. 

 

Marrakech & the Sahara

Exciting adventure in the Sahara Desert and High Atlas Mountains.

 

- 8 Days

- Experience an exciting adventure in the Sahara Desert and High Atlas Mountains.

- Suitable for – Age 16+

- Activity level – Leisurely / Moderate

- Guided Tour (Including flights)

 

Highlights:

- Experience varied scenery from the Sahara Desert to the High Atlas Mountains

- Journey into the desert Bedouin style, by camel

- Visit Tighza and experience a traditional hammam 

- Walk in the magnificent High Atlas Mountains

- Explore Marrakech with its lively souks and peaceful gardens

shutterstock 1090153730

Amalfi Coast: Pompeii & Pizza Family Holiday

Southern Italy is famous for beautiful beaches, picturesque towns and of course the wonderful pizzas and gelatos. The Amalfi Coast offers all this and more.

 

- 8 Days

- Suitable for - Age 9+ 

- Activity level - Leisurely/Moderate 

- Including Flights 

 

Highlights:

- Visit Pompeii and get close to Mount Vesuvius

- Enjoy boat trips and kayak along the beach 

- Learn how to make an authentic Neapolita Pizza

- Superb coastal walk along the 'Path of the Gods'

 

shutterstock 569944639

Sicilian Volcanoes Family Holiday

Walk on Mount Etna, observe volcanic activity on Stromboli and discover villages on the Aeolian Islands.

 

- 8 Days

- Suitable for - Age 9+

- Activity level - Moderate 

- Guided (Including Flights)

 

Highlights:

- Hike on three active volcanoes 

- Kayak and swim in the cobalt Tyrrhenian Sea

- Learn about the Aeolian Islands' geology 

- Enjoy boat trips and time at the beach 

shutterstock 1377258752

Peru Family Adventure

Spectacled bear of northern Peru, awe-inspiring Machu Picchu and fun filled Cuzco, a family adventure that has so much to offer.

 

- 13 days

- Suitable for - Age 9+

- Activity level - Moderate 

- Guided (Including Flights)

 

Highlights:

- Visit Peru's first wildlife rescue centre designed specifically for Spectacled Bears

- Morning tour of Machu Picchu when it's at its quietest

- Chocolate making class and art workshop in Cuzco 

- Explore the Sacred Valley and visit an alpaca farm

Machu Picchu Sunset 111709355

Dordogne Self-Guided Activities 

 

Combine three of our exciting holidays to experience the ultimate activity holiday in the Dordogne.

 

- 9 Days

- Suitable for - Age 8+

- Activity level - Leisurely/Moderate

- Self Guided

 

Highlights:

- Three activities in one holiday: two days canoeing with a choice of walking or cycling for the remaining days

- Impressive chateaux, troglodyte cave dwellings, Rocamadour, Grottes de Lacave and Gouffre de Padirac

- Dramatic river valleys, pinky-gold cliffs and mediaeval villages

- Friendly, family-run hotels, all with pools and fine food

shutterstock 1640779798

Egyptian Family Adventure

Explore the vibrant culture and ancient history of Egypt. 

 

- 9 Days

- Suitable for - Age 9+

- Activity level - Leisurely/Moderate 

- Guided Group Tour

 

Highlights:

- The Pyramids and Great Sphinx of Giza

- Snorkelling and a submarine ride in the Red Sea

- Sail the Nile in a Felucca

- Explore the Valley of the Kings

Sphinx

 

Petra & Wadi Rum Adventure 

 

Take your family on a trip back in time where Romans roamed and Nabateans built one of the most unusual cities in the world, Petra

 

- 9 Days

- Suitable for - Age 9+

- Activity level- Leisurely/Moderate

- Guided Group Tour

 

Highlights:

- Travel back in time to ancient Jerash and Petra

- Star gaze in Wadi Rum

- Chill on the Red sea coast

- Float in the Dead Sea

shutterstock 488014636

 

Family Lycian Activity Week

The endless coastline, canyons and rivers of southern Turkey are the playground for adventures on land and sea.

 

- 8 days 

- Suitable for - Age 9+

- Activity level - Moderate 

- Guided Group Tour (Incl Flights)

 

Highlights:

 

- Enjoy an action-packed week of adrenaline-filled activities in stunning Lycian scenery

- Sea kayak over a sunken city in the Mediterranean Sea

- Canyoning - abseil, clamber and jump down a spectacular gorge, through waterfalls and pools

- Explore ancient ruins

- Relax on the beach at PataraEnjoy a scenic coastal walk past Roman ruinsshutterstock 1468149320

 

Kenya Family Wildlife Quest  

- 8 Days

- Suitable for - Age 9+

- Activity level - Moderate

- Guided Group Tour (Incl Flights)

 

Highlights:

 

- Safari in the Masai Mara

- Search for hippos on Lake Naivasha

- Visit Nairobi’s Elephant Orphanage

shutterstock 454560490

Contact us to find out more about adventure family holidays:
Send us a private Facebook message
☎️ 028 6632 4477
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Do you have a passion for seeing the world and love the idea of sharing new experiences? Looking to book your first solo holiday but worried about travelling independently? At Erne Travel, we organise specialist Solo Travel Tours all over the world.

shutterstock 1430298725 1

There are many reasons why people choose to travel independently, why couldn't that be you? Erne Travel can help create incredible holiday memories by catering to all sorts of different requests made by our solo travellers.

 

The great thing about solo escorted tours and holidays is that you can always be with like-minded people who share your passion for travel and adventure. We can find you holidays with the perfect balance of being able to enjoy new experiences with other solo travellers, as well as having your own free time to explore independently.

 

Call our holiday experts today to find out more about Solo Escorted Touring 028 6632 4477, or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

shutterstock 1625122411 1

Types of Solo Escorted Tours:

 

Classic Touring - Discover and stay in multiple amazing destinations. 

 

Leisurely Touring - Enjoy the comfort of staying put in one or two hotels while still packing in lots of adventure. 

 

Relax & Discover - Slow pace of tour, cantered around one hotel, with a great balance of relaxation and exploration.

 

Short Breaks - Short on time? A Short Break is the ideal way to discover a place you've always wanted to visit.

 

Festive - Christmas is a truly magical time of year and our collection of festive holidays feature something for everyone.

 

Active - Holidays that require a higher level of fitness or mobility. They include plenty of walking as you see a destination in a new light. 

 

Ski - Designed to suit skiers of all levels, so you can make the most of your week away on the slopes in the company of other solo travellers.

 

River Cruising - All-inclusive 4-star river cruising is a truly wonderful way to explore. Sit back, relax and enjoy as you sail along some of Europe's most famous waterways. 

 

Cruising - Where the view is an ever-changing vista of exciting land and seascapes, cruises for solo travellers illuminate every moment of the enriching cultural experiences you're sure to have, both ashore and on board. 

shutterstock 246233632

 All Solo Guided Holidays Include

 

A room of your own is guaranteed - We know how important it is to have your own space, so you'll always have a twin or double room to yourself. 

 

Expert Tour Managers - Your Tour Manager will take care of everything and help bring your destination to life.

 

Welcome get-togethers - A welcome drink or dinner is included, a great way to break the ice with your fellow travellers.

 

Breakfast is always included - As well as plenty of other meals, breakfast is included every day. And unless you want to go solo, you'll eat with the rest of the group.

 

Plenty of excursions are included - We'll take you to all the must-see sights, but also make sure time is built in for you to explore independently if you wish. 

 

Freedom & Flexibility - You can tailor your trip to suit you. Join optional excursions, extend your tour or even add on somewhere new at the end.

 

Protected Deposits - If your travel plans have to change, it's no problem! We'll protect your initial deposit and you can use it at a later date, at no extra charge.*

 

Multi-booker Offer - When you book two or more tours for yourself at the same time, we'll take £50 off each extra holiday.*