First Airbus A380 Delivered to Emirates Airlines

The first of many Airbus A380 SuperJumbos has been delivered to Emirates a few minutes ago. Emirates will start flying this aircraft to New York in just a few days (see our earlier post) and will receive many more in the coming years. Currently Emirates has 58 Airbus A380’s on order, which is by far the largest order from any airlines of the world for this type of Aircraft.


First Airbus A380 delivery to Emirates Airlines (c by Airbus)

The first Emirates A380 has the following seating arrangement:

Besides all the brand new seats across the three classes, and the first class suites equipped with electrically assisted sliding doors and massaging, full lie-flat beds (seats), the A380 will have very impressive commons areas, such as a lounge bar at the rear-of the upper deck (where First and Business class seats are located) and a luxury-hotel like bathroom in First class (with two showers available). The “Shower Spas” can be attended upon contacting the purser to make an appointment. The dedicated Shower assistants will prepare the Shower Spa prior to each appointment! Even though the bar has been planned before, the Showers seem like a brand new (and very nice) idea!


Emirates A380 Bar (c by Airbus)


Detail of Emirates Airlines First Class Lavatory (c by Airbus)


Shower on the Emirates Airlines A380 (c by Emirates)

The Emirates A380 is the first to use the GP7200 engines (Singapore Airlines - the so far only operator of the superjumbo - has been using Rolls Royce power).

The plane will be flying the inaugural flight between Dubai and New York JFK on August 1 and 2, while it will enroll into normal service starting August 8, 2008. Emirates expects to receive 4 more of the aircraft this year.

Top 9 Places To Visit in Australia

Australia has something for just about everyone. From simple holidays to culture filled excitement, there are all sorts of options to enjoy. Here are ten of the must see places and events around Australia that you can consider for your next holiday.

  1. Sydney


Sydney is Australia’s number one travel destination in terms of number of visitors. The Sydney Opera House was completed in the 1960's. The unique design for the facility, coupled with the excellent acoustics, make this cultural icon a must see stop that even persons who are not interested in opera will enjoy.

One of the great things about Sydney is there is both culture and lots of fun activities as well. The beaches provide some of the most beautiful ocean side playgrounds in the entire world. Visitors can spend endless hours enjoying the sun and pristine sands, then enjoy tours into some of the surrounding bush areas. Later, a night out on the town is easy to manage, with an array of night spots that will accommodate just about every interest. While in town, don't forget to admire the spectacular Harbour Bridge.

2. Cairns & the Great Barrier Reef

Far North Queensland is a wonderful tropical paradise. Cairns is the main entry point and from there you can travel north or south and out to beautiful island resorts. Luxury holiday homes are a great accommodation option in this part of Australia.


The Great Barrier Reef is known as the world's largest coral reef, the Great Barrier Reef stretches along the Queensland coast for a distance of approximately 35 million hectares. Many varieties of fish and other forms of sea life make the Reef home, and there are plenty of opportunities to learn about and observe. As a family opportunity, the Great Barrier Reef is an activity that will fascinate even the most jaded of travelers.

3. Brisbane

While visiting along the Great Barrier Reef, Brisbane is the place to go when you need a taste of the big city. Located in Queensland, the city is known for spectacular night spots that offer a little something for everyone, as well as a range of cuisine that is considered to be the best in Australia by many visitors.

4. Melbourne


Considered by many to be the emotional heart of Australia, Melbourne offers a mix of modern architecture and amenities along with some of the most beautiful examples of Victorian architecture in the world. Shopping and food that ranges from fine cuisine to guilty pleasures can easily be found at Federation Square and the New Quay.

5. The Great Ocean Road

No visit to Australia is complete without enjoying the view from the Great Ocean Road. Running for over two hundred miles along the coastline in the area of Victoria, the view is breathtaking any time of the year. There are plenty of interesting local restaurants to try along the way, as well as several great places to stop and enjoy a beer. The Great Ocean Road is a wonderful drive over a weekend or stay a little longer at a holiday rental property.

6. The Red Centre including Uluru-Tjuta National Park

Found in the Northern Territory, the Red Centre is considered to be the physical center spot of Australia. Tourists will enjoy viewing the Ayers Rock, which is also known as Uluru. Viewing Uluru is considered to be an ideal activity at sunrise and sunset, when the range of colors across the red rock seem to waver and change in fascinating patterns.


Uluru-Tjuta National Park is an area that functions as both a wildlife preserve and a national park. Along with the Ayers Rock, the part also encompasses such sites as Alice Springs and the Olgas.

7. Canberra

Canberra is the Capital of Australia and a fascinating place to see. Visit Parliament House, the National Gallery of Australia, the National Library, National Archives which feature old movies, records, books and artifacts as well as the War Memorial. Four days is Canberra is adequate to see most of the attractions.

8. Adelaide

Considered to be the doorway into the Outback, Adelaide is a thriving city that includes some of the most prestigious vineyards in the country. There are a number of places around the city that are ideal for getting away from it all for a few days, as well as enjoying a night life that is low key but very active.

9. Tasmania


Tasmania offers breathtaking scenery, hiking and camping. Just off the coast, the main land you can reach Tasmania by car ferry or by short flight. Hobart is a stunning town on the Derwent river and features colonial architecture. The local food produce is deliciously fresh and restaurants reasonably priced. lists a wide range of Holiday Accommodation in Australia including Holiday Rentals, Holiday Apartments, Holiday Homes and Serviced Apartments for short or long stay. For more information on Holiday Apartments Sydney, Serviced Apartments Sydney, visit

By Samuell Armstrong

Top 10 Weirdest Restaurants

Cannibalistic Restaurant (Japan)

Condom Restaurant (Thailand)

Dark Restaurant (China)

Robot Restaurant: Run by two identical couples (China)

Medical Restaurant (Taipei)

Military-Themed 'Buns and Guns' Restaurant (Lebanon)

Restaurant in a Prison (Italy)

Restaurant in the Sky (Belgium)

Toilet Restaurant (Taiwan)

Undersea Restaurant (Maldives)

Batur and Kintamani, Bali

A mountain village, Batur is north of Penelokan on the western rim of the crater, with no distinguishable border separating it from Kintamani. The newcomer on the ridge, Batur until 1926 was a prosperous village located at the foot of Gunung Batur. In 1917, the volcano erupted and buried most of the village in lava. This cataclysm took the lives of 1,000 people, destroying 65,000 homes and 2,500 temples. Miraculously, the molten lava stopped short at the gateway of Batur’s village temple.


Kintamani Village

Kintamani is a cool, fresh retreat, bring warm clothes, as it’s cold at night (1,500 meters above sea level). The fog comes rolling into Kintamani early, transforming it into a ghost town of howling ‘anjing’, so you’d best settle in before nightfall. The coldest months are July and August, lots of rain from October to March. Get up early to watch a superb sunrise.

There are fewer annoying locals and you’re treated with slightly more respect. Still, Kintamani has more barking dogs per square meter than any other place on Bali. There’s a busy market every third morning along the highway in the north part of town, right in front of Losmen Miranda.

The temples of the area look out over the crater. People come from all over the island to pray here, especially during ‘odalan’. A grand old ‘gong gde’, one of only three on Bali, plays for the ceremony.


Bali’s best-known The Bali Aga, is the island’s oldest inhabitant, aboriginals who lived here long before the Majapahit invasion in the 14th century. Legend has it the village was established on the spot where an ancient ‘taru menyan’ tree stood-thus the town’s name. It is said that in ancient times the lake goddess Dewi Danu was lured down from heaven by the lovely scent of this tree.


Today Trunyan is a real tourist trap, and you may not get to experience much more than villagers clamoring for money. Still, the setting is spectacular-green mountain backdrop and deep blue lake, mist-shrouded Gunung Batur rising up dramatically on the other side.
Culturally and ethnically outside the mainstream, Trunyan provides evidence of how Bali’s earliest people lived.

Pura Pancering Jagat

Trunyan’s old temple, Pura Pancering Jagat (”Temple of the Navel of the World”), stands under a massive banyan tree. Unusual architecture abounds in this austere ‘pura’-a fossilized relic of aboriginal Balinese society.

The Kuburan, the Bali Aga prefer exposing their dead in the open air rather than cremating them. Valuable land cannot be given over to the burial of the dead. After complicated rituals, the naked body is first wrapped in white cloth, then placed in a shallow pit, protected from scavengers by a triangular bamboo fence and roof. Those who have committed suicide or who have died of horrible disfiguring diseases are buried.


Most ‘losmen’ are located on the main street, Jalan Pasar Kintamani, each offering cold, cubicle-like, damp-smelling rooms. This environment is somewhat alleviated by a crackling log fire at night-order the wood earlier in the day. Kintamani’s best budget hotel is small, friendly, family-run Losmen Miranda with six rooms in the upper end of town. Services include free baggage storage, hot water at no charge, and a log fire. This clean, well-kept hotel and its good food are excellent value. Nothing glamorous but no bugs in the bed, and bars on the windows.


There are ‘warung makanan’ up from Puri Astina in the market. Losmen Miranda has a pretty good fully Westernized 28-item breakfast and dinner menu, including fried noodles, veggie omelets, black rice pudding, and vegetables, eggs, and sauce. Miranda claims to have the best pancakes on Bali-banana inside, coconut on top.

Getting Away

From Kintamani to Penelokan by ‘bemo’, to Singaraja by bus (1.5 hours) and to Denpasar by bus (1.5 hours). The Denpasar-Singaraja bus passes in front of Losmen Miranda. For Gunung Batur, it’s possible to start your climb from Kintamani at 0600 and return by 1200. Expert local guides, available through the hotels, will lead you down the old bridle path that drops steeply from the lip of the outer crater, then climbs up and over the rim of the inner crater before descending into the innermost crater.