Australia Highlights - 13 days
- 13 day tour
- Flights included
Day 1: Welcome to Melbourne
On arrival at Melbourne Airport you will be transferred to your hotel. This evening join your Travel Director and fellow travelling companions on board the Colonial Tramcar Restaurant for a Welcome Reception and dinner. As your Tramcar cruises the city streets of Melbourne, you’ll enjoy the seasonal menu and quality Australian wines.
Hotel: Crowne Plaza, Melbourne, 3 nights. D
Day 2: Melbourne Sights
See the city sights this morning, including Melbourne’s eclectic little laneways, arcades and café society, on your private walking tour. Spend the rest of the day as you wish. B
Day 3: Melbourne ‘Day at Leisure’
Today Melbourne is all yours to explore. You’ll have time to discover some of the secrets of this exceptional city – a myriad of cafés, galleries, museums, markets, restaurants, laneways and parks await you. If you wish to explore further afield you can join a tour to the famous Penguin Parade on Phillip Island, where you’ll watch the nightly ritual as the little penguins march up the sand to their nesting places. Or take the journey along the Great Ocean Road to see the famous Twelve Apostles. Visit the Yarra Valley’s wineries, the Dandenongs, Healesville Wildlife Sanctuary and Puffing Billy Steam Train or Sovereign Hill’s Goldmine. Ask your Tour Director for details, please note these suggestions will incur an extra charge. B
Day 4: Melbourne to Alice Springs
You will be transferred to Melbourne Airport for your early morning flight to Alice Springs. On arrival visit the Royal Flying Doctor Service and learn how this marvellous facility operates to provide a ‘mantle of safety’ to the people of the outback. Next stop is the School of the Air, which provides an educational facility for children living in remote areas. Then visit the historic Telegraph Station. Tonight you’re invited to experience the Aussie outback at the Earth Sanctuary World Nature Centre. Enjoy a barbecue dinner and hear from Tom and Danny Falzon about the sustainable lifestyle they have established. They may even lead you on a sing-a-long accompanied by the didgeridoo and guitar.
Hotel: Chifley Alice Springs Resort, Alice Springs. B YD
Day 5: Alice Springs – Ayers Rock
Travel through the West MacDonnell and James Ranges and pause to view majestic Atila (Mt. Conner) often mistaken for Uluru, before arriving at Ayers Rock Resort. This afternoon is free for you to enjoy the resort’s facilities. Later, travel to the Uluru sunset viewing area. Witness and photograph the striking colour changes of Uluru at sunset while enjoying complimentary sparkling wine and canapés.
Hotel: Desert Gardens Hotel, Ayers Rock Resort, 2 nights. B
Day 6: Kata Tjuta (the Olgas)
Rise early to view Uluru (Ayers Rock) at sunrise. Watch the first rays of the sun set alight the Red Centre. Tour the caves at the base of Uluru and hear stories of the Aboriginal Dreamtime. Later, visit the Uluru – Kata Tjuta Cultural Centre. This afternoon travel through the desert plains to Kata Tjuta (the Olgas). The size and grandeur of these 36 massive domes of red conglomerate rock will amaze you. Take a walk through Walpa Gorge following the natural creek bed between two of the tallest domes. Celebrate the glorious sunset at Kata Tjuta (the Olgas) with complimentary sparkling wine and nibbles. B
Day 7: Ayers Rock – Cairns
This morning interact with local Aboriginal artists at a fun introduction to Western Desert Art. Your host will introduce you to Anangu culture and show how this is expressed in their artwork. Complete your own painting to take home as a memento of your experience. Later you will be transferred to Ayers Rock Airport for your flight to Cairns.
Hotel: Hilton Hotel, Cairns, 3 nights. B
Day 8: Great Barrier Reef
Cruise on a high-speed catamaran to the Great Barrier Reef. View the colourful coral and tropical fish from a semi-submersible vessel. Snorkelling gear is included (extra charge for scuba). Enjoy a reef education presentation on this living wonder and a tropical buffet lunch on board the pontoon. Return to Cairns in the late afternoon. B L
Day 9: Cairns ‘Day at Leisure’
Today is at leisure in Cairns. Relax by the hotel pool or go shopping. You may like to join an optional tour to Kuranda including a scenic rail journey on the Kuranda Train and ride the Skyrail Cableway above the canopy of the rainforest or try hot air ballooning over the Atherton Tablelands. B
Day 10: Cairns – Sydney
This morning encounter unique Australian animals at the Cairns Wildlife Dome. Later, you will be transferred to Cairns Airport for your flight to Sydney. On arrival in Sydney you will be transferred to your hotel. This evening is free for you to explore this exciting city. Perhaps take a stroll down to Circular Quay to view the panorama of the sparkling harbour surrounded by the Opera House and Harbour Bridge.
Hotel: Four Points by Sheraton Darling Harbour, Sydney, 3 nights.B
Day 11: Sydney Sights & Harbour Cruise
This morning see the sights of Sydney. Tour the Sydney Opera House with a local guide. See the Royal Botanic Gardens, Mrs. Macquarie’s Chair and Kings Cross. Your next destination is Bondi Beach, where you can wander along the shoreline and dip your toes in the cool clear ocean. When you return to the city you'll cruise the glistening water of Sydney Harbour and then have the opportunity to discover Australia’s national gemstone – the opal. Later, why not visit the historic Rocks district at Circular Quay, which dates back to the time of the early settlers. B
Day 12: Sydney ‘Day at Leisure’
Explore the beautiful harbour city of Sydney further today. Make the most of your day and take an optional trip to the Blue Mountains. Gather together this evening to celebrate your holiday at a Farewell Dinner with your Tour Director and new-found friends. B FD
Day 13: Farewell from Sydney
Your holiday concludes this morning after breakfast. You'll be transferred to Sydney Airport to connect with your onward flight. B