The number of flags is a guide to the degree of difficulty of ASA tours relative to each other (not to those of other tour companies). It is neither absolute nor literal. One flag is given to the least taxing tours, seven to the most. Flags are allocated, above all, according to the amount of walking and standing each tour involves. Nevertheless, all ASA tours require that participants have a good degree of fitness enabling 2-3 hours walking or 1-1.5 hours standing still on any given site visit or excursion. Many sites are accessed by climbing slopes or steps and have uneven terrain.
It is important to remember that ASA programs are group tours, and slow walkers affect everyone in the group. As the group must move at the speed of the slowest member, the amount of time spent at a site may be reduced if group members cannot maintain a moderate walking pace. ASA tours should not present any problem for active people who can manage day-to-day walking and stair-climbing. However, if you have any doubts about your ability to manage on a program, please ask your ASA travel consultant whether this is a suitable tour for you.
Please note: it is a condition of travel that all participants agree to accept ASA’s directions in relation to their suitability to participate in activities undertaken on the tour, and that ASA retains the sole discretion to direct a tour participant to refrain from a particular activity on part of the tour. For further information please refer to the ASA Reservation Application Form.
Tim is a highly respected scientist, scientific communicator and botanic gardens director. He took up the role of Director and Chief Executive of Royal Botanic Gardens Victoria in March 2013, following two years in a senior role at Royal Botanic Gardens Kew (London), and eight years as Executive Director of the Royal Botanic Gardens and Domain Trust in Sydney. Tim is an Honorary Professorial Fellow in the School of Botany at The University of Melbourne and has been a Visiting Professor in the School of Biological and Biomedical Science, Durham University. He has a broad interest in plants and gardens, including editing and writing for the 4-volume Flora of Victoria. In 2014 Tim published Sprinter and Sprummer: Australia’s Changing Seasons, challenging the use of the traditional four seasons in Australia, and in August 2022 his ‘wildly rich memoir’ Evergreen: The Botanical Life of a Plant Punk.
Tim blogs (TalkingPlants), tweets, and looks for any opportunity to promote science, plants and gardens. He is a frequent guest on Australian radio and television, and writes opinion pieces for major newspapers. Over the summers of 2014-15 and 2015-16 Tim hosted ABC Radio National’s first gardening show, Talking Plants, and he contributes regularly to RN’s Blueprint for Living. He writes for a variety of science, nature and garden magazines – including regular pieces for Gardening Australia Magazine and maintains an active social media profile.
Tim first joined ASA in 2017 and has since led two garden tours to Spain. He has travelled extensively through the United Kingdom and Ireland, visiting gardens and meeting horticultural experts and garden owners. He is excited by the opportunity to show ASA travellers some of his favourite places.
Lynda initially completed a BSc in Botany and worked in research laboratories for a number of years. Her love of Language saw her complete a BA majoring in French & Linguistics, in her spare time, and from there she went in to secondary teaching for the larger part of her career. She has taught students of all ages, including adult classes and has led student tours to New Caledonia and to France.
During her career she has worked and volunteered in a variety of places, where she has been able to expand her knowledge of the plant world and famous gardens while enjoying any opportunities to practise her language skills. While living in Kew Gardens, London she volunteered with the Schools & Families Program to assist with school visits and to be a ‘Palm House Explainer’, which involved engaging visitors with displays in the famous glasshouse at Kew. Another role she undertook in London, was that of Art History Coordinator for the Australian Women’s Club. The visits to many cultural institutions and exposure to such rich collections stimulated an ongoing interest in Fine Arts.
Lynda is currently an active committee member of the Victorian Branch of the Australian Garden History Society and an enthusiastic volunteer with the award-winning Orchid Conservation Program, based at Royal Botanic Gardens Cranbourne. In her spare time, she enjoys taking Botanical Art classes and has recently completed a series of drawings of endangered native orchids for the Orchid Conservation program.
In 2017, she assisted her husband, Professor Tim Entwisle on the gardens of Spain tour and in 2019 chose to attend a Spanish Language course to improve her skills in this language. Now, with greater time to travel, Lynda is looking forward to supporting like-minded travellers as they explore international gardens and cultural sites.