Road Trip: Highlights of Australia and New Zealand
20 Days from $ 7,690 / person
Take a road trip through the best-loved sites of both Australia and New Zealand. Starting in Sydney, explore this vibrant city with treasures such as the Harbour Bridge and Opera House. Drive through the rugged Outback to Uluru, the heartland of aboriginal culture. Next, enjoy snorkeling and diving in the Great Barrier Reef and as well as hiking in the pristine Daintree National Park.
In New Zealand, discover Maori culture, geothermal springs, volcanic mountains, and sandy beaches in North Island. Driving on to South Island, explore cultural cities such as Wellington and Christchurch. Plenty of natural wonders also await you – from Kaikoura, brimming with marine and bird life to the magnificent Fox Glacier and the otherwordly Fiordland!
You can personalize this road trip to discover more of these beautiful countries at your own pace. Get in touch with us for expert recommendations and a tailor-made itinerary!
Sydney is home to some of Australia’s most iconic landmarks – Fireworks over Harbour Bridge to ring in the New Year, the Opera House, the Darling Harbour, and Bondi Beach.
Essential Sydney: Sights, Smells, and Sounds Starting from The Rocks, a buzzing historic precinct in the heart of the city, learn about Sydney’s oldest neighborhood that was built by castaways and convicts. See well-preserved old sandstone buildings on cobblestone streets, Australia’s first church, and buskers enlivening the waterfront promenade that overlooks one of the world’s greatest natural harbors. Next up, pass by local landmarks such as Hyde Park, The Mint, the gothic-style St Mary’s Cathedral, and a heritage complex housing the Parliament of New South Wales. Admiring myriad native Australian fauna at the picturesque Royal Botanic Gardens, visit Mrs. Macquarie’s Chair. Enjoy a walking tour around this viewpoint that affords stunning views of the Sydney Harbour Bridge and Sydney Opera House! Eastbound, passing through King’s Cross and Rushcutters Bay, stop by for lunch at the stylish Cruising Yacht Club of Australia. Later, desiring the prestigious addresses of Darling Point, navigate Rose Bay, and Watsons Bay to continue along the coastal neighborhoods. Soon after, soak up the sunny vibes at the world-famous Bondi Beach frequented by travelers and Sydneysiders alike. Enjoy people watching, street art sessions, and lazing on the beachside lawns. Finally, heading inland to Paddington, stroll on Oxford Street where you can hop between local brand stores and lifestyle boutiques set within terrace houses complimenting the colonial-era architecture. As the sun dips, return to your accommodations. (Full Day; Private Activity & Transfer; Lunch, with a bottle of beer/glass of wine/soft drink included; Fitness level: Moderate; Notes: Wear comfortable clothes and walking shoes)
Group Tour: Blue Mountain Country Hop into your vehicle and travel across Sydney to Featherdale Wildlife Park, home to Australia’s favorite marsupials. Get up close and personal with kangaroos, koalas, wallabies, and wombats, watching these playful animals while they watch you! Continue onwards to the Blue Mountains National Park, where you can enjoy some home-style morning tea in a little-known hidden clearing. Afterward, spend time roaming the area and savor the natural beauty. Your next stop is Kings Tableland that looks out over the breathtaking Jamison Valley. Break for lunch at a local cafe in the heart of the Blue Mountains, and then head to Wentworth Fall for some stunning views and learn about the incredible geology of the region. Your next stop is the Eagle Hawk lookout in the township of Katoomba where you will see the famous Three Sisters rock formation. Continue around Narrowneck Plateau for more incredible vantage points, after which you will head back to Sydney. (Duration: Full Day; Time: 0730 – 1700; Shared Activity & Transfers; Meal included: Lunch & Refreshments)
A millennia-old monolith, Ayers Rock rises dramatically from the flat desert landscape and forms the heartland of Aboriginal Australia or the ‘Red Centre’.
Group Tour: Uluru Aboriginal Art and Culture Unravel the mysteries of an ancient culture with an aboriginal guide and interpreter on this fascinating tour. Understand how the indigenous people of the region have managed to live in this inhospitable environment over generations. Stop by sacred sites around Uluru or Ayers Rock and watch your expert guide interpret the rock art for you. Explore the cave where the Mala people set up home when they first arrived at Uluru and wander around the kitchen where they prepared their meals. Join the local aboriginal artists and have fun mastering the techniques of dot painting. Learn all about the various symbols and styles used to create exquisite pieces of art that tell a story of their own to create a masterpiece as a souvenir of your unique experience! (Duration: Half Day; Shared Activity & Transfers; Group Size: Small, 1-16 guests; Fitness Level: Easy.)
Group Tali Wiru Dinner in Uluru Enjoy an alfresco fine dining experience under an ancient Aboriginal sky at the unique open-air restaurant of Tali Wiru at Uluru. Get picked as you head to the elegant venue. The restaurant creates bush tucker inspired gourmet cuisine, prepared with the best and the freshest of local ingredients and local produce. On your arrival, enjoy champagne and delicious canapés. Immerse yourself in the lovely mood created by the indigenous storyteller with tales spun from legends of the land, its culture and history. Surrounded by this magical ambiance, sit down under a star-studded desert sky to savor a four-course table d’hote menu matched with premium wines. Return to your hotel after your sumptuous dinner. (Duration: 4 hrs; Time: Evening; Shared Activity & Transfers; Group size: 2-20 guests; Dinner included; Fitness Level: Easy; Please inform us in advance of any food allergies)
A paradise for nature lovers, Cairns is the gateway to one of our planet’s most precious natural resources, one that is even visible from outer space, the Great Barrier Reef!
Group Cruise and Exploration of Upolu Cay and Outer Edge Upolu Reef Discover the fascinating underwater world and come up close with endemic marine species! Cruise in comfort on the “Ocean Freedom”, a luxury catamaran, to two spectacular locations at Upolu Cay and the Reef. Fuel up with tea, coffee, fresh fruit, and Danish pastries before the vessel moors at a private location on the outer edge of Upolu Reef. You could swim or snorkel in the clear waters and also choose to go diving in order to get a better look at the gorgeous corals. Hop into a glass-bottom boat with a marine naturalist to learn more about this fragile ecosystem. Relish lunch with fresh seafood delicacies as you sail to the second location. Explore the water world some more or sunbathe on the deck as you soak in the splendid views. Afterward, enjoy a freshwater shower before you munch on cheese, cake, and crackers while the catamaran sails back. (Duration: Full Day; Time: 0715 hrs; Group Size: 1-75 Guests; Shared Activity; Afternoon and Morning Tea, Lunch Included; Fitness Level: Easy. Snorkeling equipment and instructions are included.)
Group Tour of Wooroonooran National Park Discover a diverse ecosystem of flora and fauna, rivers, and stunning swim holes on a safari through the UNESCO World Heritage-listed Wooroonooran National Park. Leave the city behind on a 1.5 hr drive from your hotel in Northern Beaches, zipping past residential suburbs, sugarcane farms, and verdant rainforests. Reach White Rock to spot wild wallabies roaming freely in their native habitat. Journey on to the protected Eubenangee Wetlands – home to over 190 species of birds, and a natural crocodile breeding habitat. Take an adventure walk through swampland, rainforest, and grassland spotting birds such as jabirus, whistling ducks, rainbow bee-eaters, and other migratory ones. Drive up to Mount Bartle Frere – Queensland’s highest mountain – and follow a rainforest trail to the cascading Josephine Falls. Plunge in for a cool swim, or take a breather on the deck to view the tiered waterfalls. Relish a hearty buffet at Roscoe’s restaurant in the delightful countryside of Innisfail. Once recharged, set off for the Johnstone river for an exciting mangrove cruise spotting birds and other wildlife, and crocodiles basking on the river banks. Disembark and continue by road to Babinda Boulders (Devil’s Pool) – a natural creek flowing through giant boulders. Walk along the track through the rainforest surrounding the creek, to a viewing platform that makes the perfect spot for a selfie or for launching your drone. Dip in the refreshingly cool waters in the swimming area. Call it a day as dusk sets in, and drive back to your hotel for a restful night. (Duration: Full Day; Time: 0750 hrs; Shared Activity & Transfers)
From volcanic peaks, lush native canopies and black sand beaches, to hip entertainment districts, contemporary art scenes and gourmet experiences, there’s something for everyone in this populous waterfront city, the largest in New Zealand!
Explore Auckland on Your Own Set off at a convenient time to explore Auckland on your own. This bustling North Island city is a treasure trove of natural attractions, cosmopolitan delights and ancient indigenous culture. Arrive at Auckland Domain, the city’s oldest park where you can check out striking remains of an extinct volcano and then savor the formal elegance of the Wintergardens. Make your way to the iconic Sky Tower and climb to the very top for breathtaking views of the Greater Auckland Region. Unwind with a cool mocha or savor a lunch of grilled seafood at any of the fashionable restaurants and bars that line the Viaduct Harbor. You might also want to stroll along the promenade to spot superyachts dotting the blue horizon and generally soak in the holiday vibes of this vibrant city. (Duration: Half Day; No guide; No transfers; Entrance fees and meals are not included).
From geothermal wonders at Kuirau Park located within the city center, to fumaroles, bubbling mud pools, and the pastel silica terraces of the Wai o Tapu valley, Rotorua is a haven for wellness enthusiasts.
Group Maori Art and Culture Experience at Te Po Witness indigenous art and craftwork up close on this evening tour in Rotorua. Start off from your hotel early in the evening with one of Te Puia’s best known local experts. Begin your tour at local weaving and carving schools where you can see pupils at work under the tutelage of master weavers and carvers. Afterwards you can visit some of regions award-winning galleries to see products on display and have each explained to you in as much detail as you wish. Also visit Kiwi House to view New Zealand’s famous flightless bird from up close! Next on your itinerary is a visit to unique natural wonders in the area, including geysers and mud pools. Relax for a while and then continue on to Te Keketanga-a-Rangi (Heavenly Origins), a beautiful space where twelve carved structures reach skyward. This is where you can truly experience Maori culture and traditions, listening to tales and legends of the past and then gathering at the gateway of the marae or sacred site. Be welcomed in traditional Maori style and witness typical ceremonies such as a warrior’s challenge and a ‘kapa haka’ artistic performance as well. (Duration: Half Day; Time: 1630 hrs; Travel time to Activity: 30 mins; Shared Activity)
Group Geothermal Hot Tubs and Maori Life Tour Explore the wonders of the Waiotapu Thermal Wonderland and Waimangu Volcanic Valley on this day tour of the geothermal activities at Rotorua. After an early breakfast at your hotel, head to the volcanic valley’s boiling mud pools, volcanic fumaroles, and towering geysers that erupt daily in a powerful mist of sulphuric steam and fury. Stop along the way for lunch, before making your way to the Buried Village that was destroyed by the volcanic eruption of Mount Tarawera back in the 19th century. Dormant now, the panoramic vistas of the volcanic mountain and the volcanic Lake Tarawera is a sight to behold. Visit the Maori Village of Whakarewarewa and learn how the local people have been making the best of their steaming and boiling geothermal land in their daily lives for generations. Return to your hotel after a fascinating day of geological explorations and cultural discovery. (Duration: Full Day; Time: 0800 hrs; Shared Activity; Group size: Max 10 guests; Lunch with hot beverages & bottled water included; Fitness level: Moderate; Please wear comfortable walking shoes).
Discover Wellington, a cosmopolitan harbor city brimming with art, culture, entertainment, and natural wonders. Wellington is also home to the protected Matiu/Somes Island reserve, and the Zealandia Ecosanctuary that conserves rare native flora and fauna.
Personalized Maori Heritage Tour at Te Papa Museum Explore the Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa that overlooks the Wellington waterfront. Through this delightful experience, get an in-depth understanding of New Zealand, its history of human settlements, stunning geographical features, and fascinating native lifestyles. Begin with the interactive backlit floor map of New Zealand, where you can step on to view regional highlights of Māori landscape and see exhibits of the island’s extinct species. Learn about Māori culture from an indigenous perspective and their influence in modern society. Browse through Māori arts, crafts, ships, dresses, and treasures, while listening to traditional tribe stories and legends. Marvel at the intricate carvings on an old wharenui, of a Māori meeting hall called the marae, and admire a large pounamu greenstone immersed in a pond. End with a hongi greeting, before dispersing. (Duration 1 hr; Time: Daily on demand; Private Activity; Fitness level: Easy)
Sitting on a dramatic peninsula, Kaikōura boasts a superb location between the snow capped Kaikōura mountain range and the Pacific Ocean. Get up close to whales, fur seals, and dolphins in the coastal waters, or enjoy birdwatching tours and sheep shearing shows.
Group Whale Watching Adventure in Kaikoura Set off on a thrilling whale watching adventure tour off the coast of scenic Kaikoura. Step into a boat owned and operated by the indigenous Kati Kuri people through their award-winning nature tourism company Whale Watch. Feel the wind as you stand on deck to spot pods of dusky dolphins and giant sperm whales frolicking in the azure waters. Keep your camera ready to capture some award-winning photos. Look out for marine animals such as fur seals that can be found basking on rocky outcrops and the endangered wandering albatross as it skims the water. Watch out for seasonal inhabitants of the region such as pilot whales, humpback whales, and blue whales among others. (Duration: 3.5 hrs; Shared Activity; Fitness Level: Easy; In the unlikely event of not spotting a whale, 80% of the fare will be refunded)
Set at the heart of glacier country, Fox Glacier is a charming town that nestles within the rainforests at the foothills of the spectacular Southern Alps.
Group Flight Over South Island Take off from Fox Glacier for a memorable flight! Fly along the whole length of the eight-mile temperate maritime glacier, admiring the spectacular scenery. Soar along the Southern Alps next, at eye-level with the western part of the country’s highest mountain, before descending the Glacier Valley. (Duration: 30 mins; Shared Activity; Please note that the flight departs from Glacier Helicopters Office, Main Rd, Fox Glacier. Infants under 4 yrs who are under 15 kg can fly free of charge and are required to sit on an adult’s knee.)
Queenstown is where adventure seekers head out to for a shot of adrenalin! The region’s dramatic landscape is wrapped around the scenic lakes, velvety mountains and valleys of the Southern Alps.
Group Milford Sound Nature Tour by Coach and Boat Soak in the natural beauty of the Milford Sound area with this coach tour and cruise. Set off from Queenstown in a comfortable glass-roofed coach, passing along the shores of Lake Wakatipu to move past the southern farmlands toward Lake Te Anau. Stretch your legs with a morning tea break before journeying on to Fiordland National Park. Make use of the opportunity to capture stunning photographs of the panoramic landscape along Milford Road. Enjoy splendid views as you go across the main divide of the Southern Alps through the Homer Tunnel, a passage carved into solid rock, which lets you pass under the mountains. Step aboard a cruise boat in Milford to savor superb views of the spectacular mountain range from the water. Cruise along passing by forested cliffs where majestic waterfalls gush down hundreds of meters into the fiord. Watch out for seals, penguins, and dolphins frolicking in the calm waters of the fiord. Relish a delicious boxed lunch as the boat sails past the magnificent scenery before disembarking to board the coach for your journey back to your hotel. (Time of Day: 0645/0720 hrs; Duration: 12 hrs; Box Lunch included; Shared Activity; Fitness Level: Easy.)
Group Tour: Dart River Jet Safari Arrive at the boarding point on the Dart River, hop onto a uniquely designed jet boat to explore the heart of Mount Aspiring National Park, just outside of Queenstown. Zoom past magnificent natural formations on the braided, turquoise blue, glacier-fed river systems, while soaking in the spectacular scenery around. Listening to stories of Māori expeditions, and your guide performing exciting river spins, head into the picturesque Te Waipounamu World Heritage Area. Disembarking shortly after, take a walk inside ancient beech tree forests on the heritage Greenstone Trail, and learn about the myriad native flora and fauna. Later, board a 4×4 coach to explore the scenic backcountry, especially several Middle Earth locations including the Paradise Valley campervan site, used as a backdrop for the Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit movies. Finally, en route Glenorchy, enjoy beautiful vistas of snow-capped mountains and native forests along the banks of Lake Wakatipu. Drive past horse stables, cattle stations, and pristine homesteads, before dispersing. (Duration: Full Day; Time: 0800 & 1200/1230; Shared Activity; Fitness level: Moderate; Notes: Bring a hat, sunscreen, and a warm layer of clothing, and wear comfortable walking shoes)
You will be transferred from your hotel to Queenstown airport in a private vehicle
Price & Inclusions
Option 1 From $ 7,690 /person
Option 2 From $ 10,390 /person
Prices are in USD and exclude international flights. This trip price is based on low season rates for accommodation and other applicable services, and may change depending on availability, currency fluctuations and number of people traveling together. For high season prices, please contact us with your exact travel dates and preferences.
Accommodation & meals as specified in the itinerary
Activities & excursions as specified in the itinerary
Transportation services as specified in the itinerary
Your Trip Coordinator: a 24/7 point of contact supporting you during your trip
Entrance fees & meals, unless mentioned in the itinerary description