Airnorth's new journey to Timor-Leste

Airnorth, Australia's Northern Airline is launching new travel packages to Timor-Leste through travel wholesalers, Frangipani Holidays.

The packages, to and from the capital Dili, include airfares, a range of accommodation and activities that cater for both the traveller looking for adventure and people wanting to sample the rich culture of this new nation.

To launch and support the new Timor-Leste tourism packages Airnorth will fly their Embraer 170 Jet from Darwin to Dili and return every Friday, commencing Friday 12 December 2008 building up to daily services by May 2009

Airnorth was the first airline to establish services to Dili during the political uprising in 1999.

"At the time, the United Nations forces and other emergency personnel needed a reliable means of transport to reach Darwin. Since those early days the services have fluctuated in number from daily to three services a day and back to daily. Airnorth currently operate 11 scheduled services per week", Airnorth's Chief Executive Officer, Michael Bridge said.

"Today, of course, Timor-Leste is a much more peaceful nation than it was nearly ten years ago, and there are several new infrastructure projects underway, such as new resorts and hotels," Mr Bridge said.

With a great variety of pristine, live coral and aquatic species, Timor-Leste has always been a paradise for divers and one the new packages offers the ultimate diving experience during a five day stay.

Another package provides people with an interest in history, a comprehensive and reputable tour of the island, providing direct insight into the fascinating mix of Timorese, Portuguese and other cultures.

"Timor-Leste is often described as Bali 20 years ago, with beautiful beaches, developing tourism opportunities, and best of all, friendly people who are eagerly looking to the future after 30 years of conflict."

"We always have had a strong commitment to the development of communities in Timor-Leste", Mr Bridge said. "In particular we have supported and continue to support many Australian and international humanitarian organisations providing aid in Timor-Leste".

"We also sponsor medical teams travelling with large amounts of medical supplies and equipment to conduct clinics throughout the country", Mr Bridge said.