Contrasts of Australia & New Zealand

18 days,

17 nights |

from $9955 per person*


A bit city, a bit country; sometimes beachy, sometimes mountainous; in the company of locals and Indigenous guides – this epic Melbourne to Christchurch tour is diverse and dynamic. Traversing the East Coast of Australia, from Cairns and the Great Barrier Reef to Sydney and Melbourne, the tour also uncovers New Zealand’s North and South islands, where Auckland’s cuisine, Milford Sound’s grandeur and Rotorua’s thermal springs beckon.

  • Specialist team of two highly experienced Travel Director and Driver Guide
    3 UNESCO World Heritage Sites – Great Barrier Reef, Sydney Opera House, Fiordland National Park
    Centrally located premium hotel
  • Airport transfers (see flight information below)

Tour Highlights

  • Cruise Sydney’s glorious harbor and the Great Barrier Reef
  • Visit a local home and former stables for morning tea
  • Cruise the magnificent and world-famous Milford Sound
  • Plant a tree at a Queensland rainforest restoration project

Flight Information

Flights are not included in the tour price; please call our team for the current flight prices. Any flights referred to in the itinerary are an additional expense.

Day 1 – flights to arrive prior to 12 noon into Melbourne Airport
Day 18 – flights to depart anytime from Christchurch Airport
*Internal-vacation flights: Please note that the price above includes land and internal-vacation airfares, which are required to be booked in order to fulfil the vacation itinerary:
Day 3 – Melbourne to Cairns
Day 6 – Cairns to Sydney
Day 9 – Sydney to Auckland
Day 12 – Auckland to Queenstown
Return airfares from your home port are not included in the price above.
Return airport to hotel transfers are included in the holiday price

Departure Dates

18 January 2024 – from $9955/person based on double occupancy

01 February 2023 – from $9955/person based on double occupancy

15 February 2024 – from $9955/person based on double occupancy

07 March 2024 – from $9955/person based on double occupancy

11 April 2024 – from $10,025/person based on double occupancy

All trips include 24-hour emergency travel assistance.

Book by:

January 31, 2024

Valid for travel between:

28 December 2023; 18 January 2024; 1 February 2024; 15 February 2024; March 7, 2024; 28 March 2024

Additional dates, gateway cities and airlines may be available.

Need some help? Contact us here.

Day 1 Welcome to Melbourne

Meet your fellow adventure-seekers – you’re going to be spending a fair bit of time with them. Hotel: Crowne Plaza Hotel Melbourne, 2 nights Included Meals: Dinner with wine

Day 2 Melbourne

Take a deep dive into Melbourne’s art-filled lanes and alleys on a private walking tour. Spot a jazz bar or hidden restaurant you fancy? The afternoon is yours to indulge however you wish.  Included Meals: Breakfast

Day 3 Melbourne – Cairns

Things start to heat up in Cairns, the heart of Tropical North Queensland. Jump aboard a cruise at Hartley’s Crocodile Adventures to discover some of the wildlife that calls this part of the state home, koalas, wallabies and crocs among them, before helping protect their habitats by planting trees as part of our Rainforest Restoration project. Talk about a feel-good day. Hotel: Hilton Cairns, 3 nights Included Meals: Breakfast

Day 4 Great Barrier Reef

The Great Barrier Reef deserves its World Heritage listing – it’s one of the most biodiverse marine environments on the planet, home to thousands of species of fish and corals, as well as six of the world’s seven sea turtles. Strap on a snorkel and dive in, or keep your hair dry and take in the drama from an underwater observatory and semi-submersible craft.  Included Meals: Breakfast, Lunch

Day 5 Cairns Free Time

Today is one of decisions: explore the Cairns Esplanade, or head up into the hills on a Scenic Railway journey to Kuranda. You’re surrounded by some of the world’s oldest rainforest as you return to base via the Skyrail Rainforest Cableway. If that’s not humbling enough, tonight’s dinner at Ochre Restaurant on the waterfront uses native ingredients that the world’s oldest civilization has consumed for millennia. . Included Meals: Breakfast, Be My Guest dinner

Day 6 Cairns – Sydney

We hope you have a window seat for the flight into Sydney – the view over the harbour as you come into land certainly sparkles. The only perspective more dazzling is from a catamaran. All aboard for a dinner cruise gliding past the Sydney Opera House and under the Harbour Bridge. Hotel: Sofitel Wentworth Hotel Sydney, 3 nights Included Meals: Breakfast, Highlight Dinner

Day 7 Sydney

Discover one of the great highlights of Sydney, the beautiful Sydney Opera House with a guided tour inside this iconic building. If there was ever a place that slipped from the pages of a fairy-tale, Wendy’s Secret Garden at Lavender Bay is it. Overlooking Sydney Harbour, this pocket of floral paradise is explained by a local volunteer – did you know this was once unused wasteland? Your visit provides a contribution to the ongoing maintenance of the enchanting garden. Explore Sydney’s inner west and enjoy a lunch with the locals at the pub. Then drive through Sydney’s hip Inner West to Batch Brewery where you will take part in a masterclass and learn how they combine creatively inspired limited release batches with sustainable practices.  Included Meals: Breakfast, Lunch

Day 8 Sydney Free Time

The day is yours to explore at your leisure or book one of our hand-crafted selection of optional experiences. There are so many sights and activities to be had in this city and further afield. Enjoy your farewell Dinner tonight with your fellow travellers.  Included Meals: Breakfast, Dinner with wine

Day 9 Sydney – Auckland

Battle of the harbours: Sydney has one, but Auckland has two. Small wonder it’s known as the ‘City of Sails’. Hotel: The Grand by SkyCity, 2 nights Included Meals: Breakfast, Dinner with wine

Day 10 Auckland

Get your Auckland bearings on a city tour, before choosing a precinct to while away the afternoon in. Ask us for dinner tips.  Included Meals: Breakfast

Day 11 Auckland – Rotorua

Cute and cuddly, NZ’s national bird, the Kiwi, is also endangered. Go behind the scenes on a working kiwi nursery and hatchery to learn how breeding programs are helping the population thrive. This evening your dinner is prepared in an earthen hangi at the Mitai Māori Village. It’s an eye-opening (and tasty) introduction to Māori culture. Hotel: Millennium Hotel, Rotorua Included Meals: Breakfast, Be My Guest lunch, Highlight Dinner

Day 12 Rotorua – Queenstown

Ever wondered what it’s like to be a film star? Today you’ll get a taste of celebrity lifestyle when you sit down to breakfast in the village of Hobbiton, the movie set of The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit Trilogies. Take a guided tour past Hobbit Holes and the Mill, and wave to your fans.   Hotel: Millenium Queenstown, 3 nights Included Meals: Breakfast

Day 13 Queenstown– Milford Sound Cruise

Sheer cliffs, thundering waterfalls, glaciers and rainforest – if there’s a destination more inspiring than Milford Sound in Fiordland National Park, we’re yet to find it. After a cruise here (look out for dolphins and sea lions), we’re sure you’ll agree.  Included Meals: Breakfast, Lunch

Day 14 Queenstown – Free Time

Sleep in, find a rooftop wine bar for lunch, take a stroll around the lake… wherever you wander, meet your fellow travellers for a Highlight Dinner at 1860s Postmasters Cottage. Included Meals: Breakfast, Hosted Dinner

Day 15 Queenstown – Lake Tekapo

Arrowtown and Cromwell are known for their natural drama; just as enticing is the tasty stone fruit. Take a bite. Arriving at Lake Tekapo, you’re far from anywhere. Which practically guarantees dazzling stargazing in the UNESCO Aoraki Mackenzie International Dark Sky Reserve.  Hotel: Peppers Bluewater Resort Lake Tekapo. Included Meals: Breakfast, Dinner

Day 16 Lake Tekapo – Christchurch

Ever wondered what life on the land is like? Meet Angie and Stan Taylor, who have farmed this countryside for more years than they care to remember. The stories you’ll hear over lunch… Hotel: Distinction, Christchurch, 2 nights Included Meals: Breakfast, Be My Guest Lunch

Day 17 Christchurch

Community spirit is strong in Christchurch; not only has the city rebuilt since the devastating 2011 earthquakes, but it’s thriving, with architectural innovations like the world’s first church built of cardboard. Take in the sights with an in-the-know local.  Included Meals: Breakfast, Be My Guest, Farewell Dinner

Day 18 Farewell from Christchurch

Say goodbye when your vacation comes to an end this morning after breakfast. Included Meals: Breakfast

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*Terms & Conditions: Pricing is per person based on double occupancy. All prices are in US dollars and correct at time of posting for travel during specified travel dates. Single supplements, black-out dates and seasonal supplements may apply. Airfare is not included unless indicated. Prices may differ when you book your travel and are not guaranteed until full payment is received. Airline and hotels frequently change their prices as a result of fare increases and/or fuel surcharges. Prices may increase before full payment for those and other reasons. Package is not combinable with any other offer or discounted vacation package. After full payment, prices are guaranteed except only due to an increase in government-imposed taxes or fees. By paying your deposit, you affirmatively agree to the possibility of such increases. Package is strictly subject to availability, not retroactive and not combinable with any other special or vacation package offer. Minimum night stays or required room types may apply. All prices, itineraries and routings are subject to change without notice. Please call for our current prices. CST#2001136-20

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