Contrasts of Australia & New Zealand

18 Day Guided Tour - from £4,425

On this grand 18 day journey, you’ll explore the two diverse and fascinating nations that lie on the shores of the Tasman Sea. Vastly different in size, and each offering unique landscapes and experiences, Australia and New Zealand share a reputation for warm hospitality and great cuisine.

HIGHLIGHTS

  • Snorkel the Great Barrier Reef
  • Explore Australia’s most iconic city, Sydney
  • Discover the thermal wonders of Rotorua
  • Enjoy a traditional Maori hangi feast
  • Cruise through the stunning Milford Sound

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Your Guided Tour

Day 1: Welcome to Melbourne

On arrival you will be transferred to your hotel. This evening join your Travel Director and fellow travellers for a welcome reception and dinner on board the famous Colonial Tramcar Restaurant. It’s a great opportunity to get to know everyone in a unique setting.

Hotel: Crowne Plaza Hotel Melbourne, 2 nights
Meals: Dinner

Day 2: Melbourne

Explore Melbourne on a city sights tour this morning, then discover its gracious arcades, eclectic laneways and vibrant street art on a private walking tour. The rest of the day is at your leisure.

Meals: Breakfast

Day 3: Melbourne - Cairns

Depart Melbourne by air this morning for Cairns, where you’ll join a local expert for a wildlife journey at Hartley’s Crocodile Adventures. Enjoy a cruise where you’re sure to encounter koalas, wallabies and crocodiles.

Hotel: Pacific Hotel Cairns, 3 nights
Meals: Breakfast & Dinner

Day 4: Great Barrier Reef

Board a high-speed catamaran today and cruise out to the iconic Great Barrier Reef. You’ll have the opportunity to go snorkelling (equipment provided), or view the spectacular coral and tropical fish from the underwater observatory and semi-submersible craft. Enjoy a tropical buffet lunch on board before you return to Cairns.

Meals: Breakfast

Day 5: Cairns ‘Free Time’

Today is free for you to pursue your own interests in this vibrant tropical city, or you may choose to visit Kuranda, ‘The Village in the Rainforest’. This evening, be prepared for a special dinner at Tjapukai Aboriginal Cultural Park. Experience a personal Welcome to Country ceremony, hear stories of the Dreamtime, witness an entertaining high impact performance by the indigenous dance group and enjoy dinner accompanied by the sounds of the didgeridoo.

Meals: Breakfast & Lunch

Day 6: Cairns - Sydney

This morning you’ll fly to Sydney, where you’ll have time to relax or explore before boarding a Captain Cook vessel for a Sunset Dinner Cruise. Glide past magnificent waterfront homes, and of course the legendary Harbour Bridge and Sydney Opera House.

Hotel: Hyatt Regency Darling Harbour, 3 nights
Meals: Breakfast & Dinner

Day 7: Sydney

Enjoy a tour of the Sydney Opera House then head to Bondi Beach for lunch at an Australian institution, the Returned Servicemen’s Club. Your host, a local surf lifesaver, will lead you on an exclusive tour through Australia’s oldest lifesaving club. Your afternoon is free for exploring or shopping, enjoying an optional excursion, or maybe just taking a stroll along the Harbour front.

Meals: Breakfast & Lunch

Day 8: Sydney ‘Free Time’

The Spend today as you please. Perhaps see the famous Three Sisters rock formation in the majestic Blue Mountains just outside the city or visit Featherdale Wildlife Park. This evening join your Travel Director for dinner in a restaurant on the waterfront.

Meals: Breakfast & Dinner

Day 9: Sydney - Auckland

It’s farewell to Australia as you fly to Auckland, New Zealand. This evening meet your Travel Director for a dinner at your hotel.

Hotel: Stamford Plaza Auckland, 2 nights
Meals: Breakfast & Dinner

Day 10: Auckland

A morning city sightseeing tour is followed by a cruise on Waitemata Harbour. Later, you’ll have time to explore the city.

Meals: Breakfast

Day 11: Auckland - Rotorua

You’re invited to a lunch at the home of Lance and Bridgette O’Sullivan, New Zealand horse racing royalty. Enjoy a sumptuous country- style lunch at the Red Barn on their beautiful Waikato Farm. This evening, enjoy a Maori Hangi dinner and a concert at the Tamaki Family Marae.

Hotel: Millennium Hotel, Rotorua
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner

Day 12: Rotorua - Christchurch

Discover native flora and fauna today at the Rainbow Springs Nature Park, before continuing to Te Puia, where a Maori guide will lead you through a geothermal wonderland. Later, board your flight to Christchurch.

Hotel: Distinction Christchurch Hotel
Meals: Breakfast

Day 13: Christchurch - Franz Josef

Journey through the spectacular Southern Alps today on the legendary TranzAlpine train. Stop at Hokitika, known for its beautiful greenstone (jade), then travel on to the magnificent Franz Josef Glacier.

Hotel: Te Waonui Forest Retreat
Meals: Breakfast & Dinner

Day 14: Franz Josef - Queenstown

Drive over the epic Haast Pass today, past thundering waterfalls and ice-blue lakes. Visit the historic gold-mining village of Arrowtown before arriving in Queenstown for a tour of the city. This evening join your Travel Director for dinner at The Boatshed, set in the restored, historic New Zealand Railways Shipping Office.

Hotel: Millennium Hotel, Queenstown, 3 nights
Meals: Breakfast & Dinner

Day 15: Milford Sound Cruise

Travel the pristine shores of Lake Wakatipu this morning to Te Anau, then through the dense rainforest of Fiordland National Park. Traverse the hand-hewn Homer Tunnel for views of the Mirror Lakes, the Cleddau Valley and The Chasm, and continue to glorious Milford Sound, judged by many as the world’s top travel destination. Cruise among sheer cliffs, massive waterfalls, glaciers and rainforest before you return to Queenstown this afternoon.

Meals: Breakfast & Lunch

Day 16: Queenstown ‘Free Time’

Relax and explore in Queenstown today, or you may like to consider taking one of our optional activities. You could ride the Shotover Jet boat or join a wine tour. This evening, perhaps ride a gondola to the Skyline Restaurant for dinner.

Meals: Breakfast

Day 17: Queenstown - Christchurch

Visit beautiful Lake Tekapo today, stopping at the Church of the Good Shepherd. Later, be welcomed to Morelea Farm by your hosts Angie and Stan Taylor for lunch in their 240-hectare garden. Join your Travel Director in Christchurch this evening for a Farewell Dinner.

Hotel: Distinction Christchurch Hotel
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner

Day 18: Farewell from Christchurch

Say farewell to your fellow travellers when your holiday comes to an end this morning after breakfast.

Meals: Breakfast

18 Day Guided Tour - from £4,425

Also available: 22 day Highlights of Australia & New Zealand from – £5,295 with additional touring options and overnight stays at Alice Springs and Ayers Rock.

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Your Touring Experience

We are proud to partner with AAT Kings to provide first class touring across Australia. Our experienced guides will make sure you don’t miss a thing.

Your guided tour includes:

  • Sightseeing, walks and activities
  • Luxury air conditioned coach travel
  • En suite hotel accommodation
  • Daily breakfast and meals shown
  • Extra night options
  • Return airport transfers
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