Enfield trip Motorbike expedition company Extreme Bike Tours is organising a 12-day, women-only tour of southern India. The "life changing adventure" starts in Goa, from where participants will ride a fleet of Indian-made Royal Enfield bikes through tea plantations and hill stations, past the palaces and temples of Mysore, and through Mudumalai National Park. The tour is priced from US$4,227 for riders and US$3,371 for pillion passengers, including accommodation, all meals, fuel, bike hire and a flight back to Goa from the final road destination, Cochin (also known as Kochi). Bookings made by October 15 will qualify for an upgrade in accommodation to Le Meridien Kochi for the last night of the tour. For further details and reservations, go to extremebiketours.com, where you will also find motorbike tours open to all, across several parts of Asia and Cuba.
Onwards at the On On Said to be Phuket's oldest hotel, the On On (pictured, above, in 2007) opened in 1929, towards the end of the island's tin-mining boom. By the close of the 20th century it was a run-down backpacker hotel, and enjoyed a period of fame among budget travellers when it was used as the location for Leonardo DiCaprio's hotel in The Beach (2000). It stands on Phang Nga Road, in Phuket Town, which stood in for Bangkok's Khao San Road in the film. In 2012, the hotel was taken over by a small Bangkok-based resort company, which undertook some renovations and reopened it the following year as The Memory at On On Hotel. Renovation work carried on afterwards, but the hotel's website now says that all work should be completed this month. Prior to closing in 2012, nightly rates started from only 180 baht (HK$38) for a basic room with a fan. Now the cheapest rooms cost 2,800 baht. But as well as preserving much of the hotel's architectural heritage, the new owners are giving a nod to the backpackers who kept the place afloat for so many years, with smart dormitory accommodation. Curtained bunks with a shared bathroom cost from 600 baht a night. For more details, cheaper internet rates and a large gallery of images of the newly renovated interior (below), visit www.thememoryhotel.com.
Views of Vietnam Due to open at the end of next month, the Vinpearl Ha Long Bay Resort (below) occupies its own private island, Dao Reu. The 384-room resort claims to offer "spectacular views of the famous limestone outcrops in Ha Long Bay which stretch across the Gulf of Tonkin" and is located just a few minutes from mainland Vietnam by free speedboat shuttle. Reservations are open from October 30, and if you go to www.vinpearl.com, you'll find a special opening offer of 3.5 million dong (HK$1,200) per night, with buffet breakfast, and 30 per cent off all resort services. Guests staying three nights can get a fourth night for free, and a one-way airport transfer from either Hanoi or Haiphong. Under rules that came into effect on July 1, citizens of Britain, France, Germany, Italy and Spain no longer need a visa to visit Vietnam for up to 15 days.
Deal of the week The Days Hotel & Suites Sanya Resort gets mixed reviews online, but looks pleasant enough on its website (www.daysresortsanya.com), and you can stay there from a package price of just HK$1,550 with Westminster Travel's two-night Sanya package. Plenty of other, more familiar-sounding hotels and resorts are also offered at good rates, including the Hilton Sanya Yalong Bay Resort & Spa (below; from HK$2,340), the Mandarin Oriental Sanya (from HK$2,920) and the Conrad Sanya Haitang Bay (from HK$2,950). This package will be available until the end of November, and prices (quoted per person, twin share) include round-trip flights with Dragonair, daily breakfast and travel insurance. For more details, a long list of other hotel and resort choices, and reservations, click Packages at www.westminstertravel.com and enter China/Sanya in the Destination search fields.