• $9,257
  • $500
  • Odysseys Unlimited

Your journey begins in Cairns, the gateway to Australia’s Far North. Board a boat for a day-long excursion to the Great Barrier Reef. Embark on an Aboriginal dreamtime tour and watch the sun set over the fabled sandstone monolith at Ayers Rock. Tour Sydney’s famous beaches, its harbor, and iconic Opera House, then fly to New Zealand and explore Mt. Cook National Park. In Rotorua, experience a geothermal reserve and the Maori culture at a traditional hangi performance. Celebrate your journey’s end in Auckland.

 

 


Gallery


Itinerary

Day 1 & 2

Depart U.S. for Cairns, Australia

Day 3

Arrive Cairns

This afternoon we arrive in Cairns, gateway to Australia’s Far North and the Great Barrier Reef. We transfer to our hotel where tonight we enjoy a briefing and dinner. (D)

Day 4

Cairns/Kuranda

We take an orientation tour of Cairns then board an historic railway to the mountain village of Kuranda. After time to explore here, we descend via the gondolas of Skyrail. We return to our hotel and the remainder of the day is at leisure to explore Cairns independently. (B)

Day 5

Great Barrier Reef

This morning we board a boat for a day-long excursion to the Great Barrier Reef, at 1,200 miles long the world’s largest living organism and richest marine resource. We pull up at Michaelmas Cay where we can swim, snorkel, or view the reef from a semi-submersible vessel. (B,L)

Day 6

Cairns/Alice Springs

We take a morning flight to Alice Springs, where we see the Anzac Hill Monument to Australian and New Zealand soldiers, Royal Flying Doctors Service, and School of the Air, which provides schooling to widely scattered Outback children. Tonight we enjoy a traditional dinner in the “bush.” (B,D)

Tour Sydney’s famous beaches, its harbor, and iconic Opera House, then fly to New Zealand and explore Mt. Cook National Park.

Day 7

Alice Springs

This morning we embark on an Aboriginal “dreamtime” tour, to meet Walpiri tribespeople and learn about their ancient culture. Then we visit Simpsons Gap and Standley Chasm, where we enjoy a picnic lunch and see the sheer rock walls aglow in reflected sunlight. (B,L)

Day 8

Alice Springs/Ayers Rock

We reach our Ayers Rock hotel early afternoon. After lunch on our own, we visit Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park, a UNESCO World Heritage site that is the traditional land of the Anangu Aboriginal peoples and home to the Olgas rock formations and Uluru (Ayers Rock). We watch the sun set over this fabled sandstone monolith that rises to a height of 1,114 feet. (B,D)

Day 9

Ayers Rock/Sydney

This morning we visit the base of Uluru and the interesting museum here. Mid-day we fly to Sydney, arriving late afternoon. (B,D)

Day 10

Sydney

Today’s tour features the breathtaking Royal Botanic Gardens, Darling Harbour and Mrs. Macquarie’s Point, Rose and Watson’s bays, and popular Bondi Beach. Then we board a catamaran for a lunch cruise around Sydney Harbour. (B,L)

Day 11

Sydney

This morning we tour Featherdale Wildlife Park, where koalas reside. Next we drive along Sydney’s Northern Beaches, a string of 18 stunning playgrounds, then stop in fashionable Manly for free time and lunch on our own. (B)

Day 12

Sydney

Today is at leisure to explore Sydney as we wish; tonight we enjoy dinner together in the popular “Rocks” area at the Waterfront Restaurant, with excellent seafood and a beautiful setting. (B,D)

Day 13

Sydney/Christchurch, New Zealand

After a late morning tour of the iconic Sydney Opera House, this afternoon is free for independent exploration. This evening we board a flight to Christchurch, New Zealand’s “Garden City.” (B)

Day 14

Christchurch/Mt. Cook National Park

This morning’s orientation tour features the acclaimed Botanic Gardens and “Re:START Mall,” the vibrant civic area that rose from the rubble of the 2011 earthquake. Then we board our motorcoach for the journey south to Mt. Cook National Park, stopping en route at a farm to watch a sheep-shearing demonstration and to see the amazing sheep dogs in action. Upon reaching Mt. Cook in the Southern Alps late today, we dine at our hotel. (B,D)

Day 15

Mount Cook

This morning’s tour of alpine Mount Cook Village includes a visit to the Sir Edmund Hillary Alpine Center, where we see a 3D planetarium movie about the region. We also visit the Hillary Gallery, commem­orating Sir Edmund’s achievements, including the first ascent of Mount Cook’s difficult South face. At 12,316 feet, Mount Cook is New Zealand’s tallest mountain. After time in the village for lunch on our own, this afternoon is at leisure to relax amid the breathtaking scenery, hike, or take an optional scenic flight (weather permitting). (B,D)

Day 16

Mount Cook/Queenstown

We depart this morning for Queenstown, stopping en route in historic Arrowtown for lunch on our own followed by a visit to Kawarau Bridge Bungy, the world’s first bungy jump operation open to the public. Mid-afternoon we reach Queenstown, New Zealand’s “adventure capital.” (B,D)

Day 17

Milford Sound

Our day-long excursion to Milford Sound includes a nature cruise through the breathtaking fjords. We have lunch on board then later have the opportunity to return to Queenstown on an optional scenic flight (weather permitting). (B,L)

Day 18

Queenstown

Today is free to explore Queenstown independently. (B)

Day 19

Queenstown/Rotorua

We depart today for Rotorua, with its geysers, bubbling mud pools, and hot thermal springs; and a center of Maori culture. Our tour here includes the new Rotorua Museum. (B)

Day 20

Rotorua

This morning and early after-noon are at leisure; late afternoon we visit Te Puia Thermal Reserve and Maori Cultural Center for a traditional hangi dinner and performance. (B,D)

Day 21

Rotorua/Auckland

En route to Auckland, we stop this morning at Ruakuri Caves to see the unique glowworms that illuminate the underground grottoes and caves. We reach Auckland late this afternoon; we’re on our own for dinner tonight. (B)

Day 22

Auckland

Our half-day tour of this city set atop 48 volcanic hills features glittering Auckland Harbour and the America’s Cup Village. We also visit the War Memorial Museum, with its prized Maori and Pacific Islander collections. Tonight we enjoy a farewell dinner at our hotel. (B,D)

Day 23

Depart for U.S.

Very early this morning we depart for the airport for the flight to Los Angeles (via Sydney) and our return flights home. (B)


B = Breakfast included    L = Lunch included    D = Dinner included


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