Australia is this year's leader in the South Pacific. Those TV commercials by ex-Sydney bridge painter Paul Hogan are drawing thousands of visitors. As a result, the Australian Tourist Commission has published a new supply of the 120-page booklet, "Australia, the Wonder World Down Under." Information about special interest tours, car rentals, climate, customs, rail travel, farmstay/homestay holidays, currency. You'll also find maps, addresses of Australian tourist offices, consulates in the United States, plus names of hotels throughout Australia. For a free copy call toll-free (800) 445-4400. Other details from the Australian Tourist Commission, 3550 Wilshire Blvd., Suite 1740, Los Angeles 90010, or telephone (213) 380-6060.
Colorado Dude Ranches
We're starting to get inquiries about the summer season for the Colorado Dude & Guest Ranch Assn. Members are scattered throughout the state. For a complete listing, drop a card to Wright Catlow, P.O. Box 300, Tabernash, Colo. 80478.
Lake Mancos Ranch in Mancos, Colo., will be starting its 31st season June 8, according to Lloyd Sehnert (he's the ex-president of the association and the oldest active ranch operator belonging to the association). Sehnert has accommodations for up to 60 guests in cabins and the main ranch house. Family cabins feature two and three bedrooms, two full baths, king-size beds for adults, twin beds for children, refrigerators. Sehnert's ranch adjoins San Juan National Forest in southwestern Colorado. Only a short drive from Durango. Activities: riding, Jeep trips, fishing, cookouts, swimming. They've even got a hot tub. Rates: $435 a week per adult, $304/$390 for youngsters. Horses are extra. Details from Lake Mancos Ranch, 42688 County Road N, Mancos, Colo. 81328.
A note from Peter Wade of Stratford House in Stratford-on-Avon tells us his hotel features a new restaurant--Shepherd's of Sheep Street ("We shall not fleece our guests," quips Wade). Chef Jenny Glover prepares "classical bourgeoise" meals, says Wade. The hotel features nine guest rooms in a Georgian house, 100 yards from the Royal Shakespeare Theater, the River Avon. Wade will meet your plane at Heathrow or Gatwick airports. Room rates: $26 per person a night and up, including morning tea and a full English breakfast.
Six Seattle inns have formed an association to provide "home-like stays" for travelers tripping out to the Pacific Northwest and Expo '86 in Vancouver this summer. Innkeepers promise "personal attention, quality rooms." Here are the addresses: Beech Tree Manor, 1405 Queen Anne Ave. N., Seattle 98109 (original art, antique beds); Chambered Nautilus Inn, 5005 22nd Ave. N.E., Seattle 98105 (six guest rooms with private porches); Chelsea Station Inn, 4915 Linden Ave. N., Seattle 98103 (furnished in '20s fashion with family heirlooms, antiques); College Inn Guesthouse, 4000 University Way N.E., Seattle 98105 (a 1909 Tudor that's named on the National Register of Historic Places); Galer Place, 318 W. Galer, Seattle 98119 (1904 Victorian, four guest rooms, a hot tub); Williams House, 1505 4th Ave. N., Seattle 98109 (a turn-of-the-century Edwardian residence nesting at the top of Queen Anne Hill).
For the Disabled
Whole Person Tours of New Jersey is offering a series of trips for the '86 season to travelers with disabilities: Holland during tulip time, Paris, London. Others to England, Ireland, Italy, Belgium, Scandinavia, Austria, Germany. The company's Grand European Tour (30 days) visits Holland, Belgium, Germany, Austria, Italy, Switzerland, France, England. Plans are in the works for visits to British Columbia and Expo '86 in Canada. For a catalogue describing the tours send $1 to cover postage to Whole Person Tours Inc., P.O. Box 1084, Bayonne, N.J. 07002. (These same people will answer individual inquiries gratis.)
"The inside key to high style, top quality and good value with joie de vivre" is how the French Government Tourist Office describes a new booklet titled "The Parisian's Guide to Shopping in Paris." Names major department stores and shops throughout Paris that specialize in ready-to-wear, perfumes, jewelry, leather goods, shoes, childrens' wear, toys, china, crystal, antiques, gourmet foods, wine. For a free copy write to the French Government Tourist Office, 9401 Wilshire Blvd., Suite 840, Beverly Hills 90212-2967, or telephone (213) 271-6665.
Oregon--Mrs. Arthur Neve, Westlake Village: "Last October we took a motor trip through California. In Jamestown in the Mother Lode country we discovered the Palm Hotel, Main Street, Historical Jamestown. What a serendipitous experience. A beautiful B&B in this tiny town. Rooms are large. Furnishings are magnificent (all antiques). Prices range from $55 through $100."