Explore the best of Australia and New Zealand in a month. Start in Sydney, where you can visit the Opera House and stroll around the harbour, before taking the ferry to Manly or walking along the coastal path to Coogee Beach. Head to the Red Centre for pink sunsets and Aboriginal culture at Uluru, before flying to Cairns where you’ll have a week exploring Northern Queensland. Hike on the beaches of Cape Tribulation, look for cassowaries in the rainforest and snorkel amongst the colourful coral on the reef before flying to New Zealand. Here you’ll have two weeks to explore the South Island by campervan, taking in the glaciers of the west coast, the fjords of the south or the soft golden bays of Abel Tasman National Park. This classic trip to Australia and New Zealand really ticks all the boxes for your first time Down Under.
This itinerary can be tailored to suit your requirements; please contact one of our consultants to start planning your dream trip.
Depart the UK from your chosen airport.
On arrival in Sydney, you will be met at the airport and take a shared transfer into the city. If you aren’t too tired, why not head straight to Circular Quay to get your first views of Harbour Bridge and the Opera House, brightly lit in the warm Australian evening?
You’ve got two days to enjoy Sydney and to help you on your way, we’ve included an iVenture Sydney card, which allows you to access many of the main sites in the city. As well as entry to the Opera House, Wildlife Sydney and the Aquarium, this pass also gives you access to some brilliant tours – fancy learning about Bondi’s beautiful beaches and coastal living or taking a walking tour of the historic Rocks neighbourhood? Both covered! You can also go jetboating on the harbour, take the hop-on-hop-off bus out to the Blue Mountains, join a bike tour through Manly or take advantage of a 2-hour board and wetsuit hire to try your hand at surfing. This is the best way to enjoy this incredible city and experience things you might never have thought of!
Today you’ll take a scheduled transfer back to Sydney Airport in time for your flight to Ayers Rock. On arrival into Uluru (Ayers Rock), you will be met and taken to your hotel by shared transfer where you will check in for a 3-night stay. The rest of the day is yours to relax at your hotel or head out and explore.
Today, we have included an Uluru Sunrise & Guided Base Walk. A coach will pick you up from your hotel and you will commence your unforgettable journey to watch the first rays of sunset creep across the desert plains and over the iconic red rock of Uluru. Breakfast will be served when you get there. After sunrise, you will accompany your guide to commence your Base Walk of Uluru. Once completed, you will board the coach back to your hotel and you will receive a certificate for your achievement. The rest of the day is at leisure.
Today is a free day, why not learn more about the Aboriginal culture at the Cultural Centre? Displays and videos offer insight into the ancient history of the local area and exhibits of local artwork is a must-see. You may even be lucky enough to see some real aboriginal demonstrations.
Alternatively, you could book one of the many exciting activities there are to do in the region. From riding camels through the red desert, outback cycling, Segway tours or even scenic flights that show you the breathtaking landscape from the sky, there's plenty of activities to keep you busy.
This evening why not enjoy the famous 'Sounds of Silence' dinner overlooking spectacular Uluru and unwind with a glass of delicious Australian wine under the stars? We always recommend pre-booking this dinner, speak to your consultant for more information.
This morning you will be collected from your hotel and taken to the airport for your flight to Cairns. On arrival in Cairns, collect your rental car and make your way to Port Douglas to check into your accommodation for 4 nights. You’ll have a few days here, which gives you time to explore some more of Northern Queensland.
There’s no better way to begin your time here than getting out on to the Great Barrier Reef. We’ve included a day cruise today where you can snorkel over the reef at three locations and discover the brightly-coloured tropical fish and corals beneath you that this spectacular reef is known for. You’ll be accompanied by knowledgeable guides who will give informative chats and guided snorkels around the reef so you can understand more about this remarkable, yet fragile ecosystem.
Enjoy another two full days to explore Port Douglas or simply take it easy and relax on the beach. Sun yourself by the pool, take a stroll along the long serene beaches or stroll around the boutiques for some local shopping. Be sure to try a few local eateries whilst you’re here since there’s a strong local culinary scene with some amazing local produce grown in the nearby Atherton Tablelands region.
Today you’ll make the 1.5-hour drive up the coast to the Daintree Wilderness Lodge, a truly unique property nestled in the heart of the oldest rainforest in the world. You’ll spend the night here, so take advantage of all the activities available; guided walks and safaris through the ancient rainforest, wildlife cruises on the Daintree River to spot some crocs, fishing trips, jungle surfing and much more.
Continuing your journey a mere 30 minutes north today, you’ll reach Cape Tribulation Beach House for your next stay. The farm stay is comprised of five secluded eco-style cabins, a 5-minute walk from the beach and a haven for wildlife lovers and those seeking a peaceful and secluded retreat. Cape Tribulation also has a wealth of activities that can be booked at additional costs from hiking to spectacular lookout points, night bushwalks, sea kayaking and horse riding. The crystal-clear creeks and nearby beaches are also a great place to chill out.
Cape Tribulation Beach House Retreat is the only beachfront accommodation in the cape, with beautiful secluded bungalows situated right where the Daintree Rainforest meets the water. The remote location gives you the chance to disconnect for the outside world, explore the forest, wander along the beach and sit around the fire roasting marshmallows with fellow guests. Spend your day hiking to Cape Tribulation Lookout, walking through the rainforest or enjoying a relaxing massage on the beach – the perfect way to end your trip!
Depending on your flight time, take a leisurely drive along the coast back to Cairns to drop off your rental car and catch your flight to Christchurch. On arrival, you’ll make your way to the campervan depot and pick up your campervan, ready for a kiwi adventure!
You have 13 nights in your campervan to explore the beautiful South Island of New Zealand. You could head south into the fantastically remote, ‘stop in your tracks’ scenery that you simply can’t capture on camera. Choose a handful of highlights or take an epic drive along the Southern Scenic Route and pass through Fjordland to the eastern coastline, where The Catlins are scattered with shipwrecks and backed by forest. Tramp along the bush fringed bays and listen for the shriek of kaka birds, spot dolphins dancing in the waves, see fossilised trees in Curio Bay and round off each day with a big plate of Bluff oysters.
Heading north up the west coast, via Queenstown and Wanaka you’ll come across wild rivers and wind-swept beaches, verdant forests and glittering glaciers along this stunning strip of land that sits between the Southern Alps and the Tasman Sea. A relic of the last ice age, the Fox and Franz Josef Glaciers are the West Coast’s biggest attraction. Strapping on crampons to crunch across the ice and enter luminous blue caves are memories you’ll treasure, and flying across the snowfields is an extravagance you won’t regret – look down to see mighty rivers of ice, ancient rainforests and the blue waters of Lake Matheson.
Travel north to Abel Tasman, New Zealand’s smallest but most visited national park, for beautiful bays, offshore islands and crystal waters. Kayak along the coastline, sail to Split Apple Rock and snorkel with seals, or take a water taxi to the best hiking trails and tramp through the park. Hike through Marlborough Sounds along the Queen Charlotte Track, or saunter down the coast and fire-up a barbeque. Work your way around Marlborough’s famous wineries and sample sauvignon blanc, Greenshell mussels and locally smoked salmon. Watch whales and dolphins in the wild bays around Kaikoura before returning your campervan to Christchurch.
Return your campervan to the Christchurch depot and make your way to the airport in time to catch your flight home.
The summer season in Sydney and the surrounding areas runs from November to March, with hot sunny weather expected daily. Winter can bring cold and rainy conditions and runs from May to October. Christmas and New Year are peak times for travel to Sydney, meaning prices are high and availability less.
The Red Centre has a semi-arid climate; between December and February, temperatures range between 20c and 35c and in winter temperatures range between 3c and 20c. Autumn is a good time to visit the Red Centre with warm days and cool nights.
In northern Queensland, there are benefits to visiting at any time of year. December to February signifies the ‘wet season’, which means wet and humid conditions. However, this also translates to very little wind and excellent visibility in the water. The humidity drops in April onwards, which is considered the start of the ‘dry season’, so it can be a cooler temperature but a little windier. October and November are peak dive months.
New Zealand is a year-round destination and there is always something to see and enjoy whatever time you decide to travel. High season runs from December to February (summer), prices will be at a premium at these times and availability limited so it is advisable to book in advance. March to April and September to November can be a great time to travel as the weather is fine and the crowds fewer. Low season is May to August (winter) for most of New Zealand – this is, however, the best time for skiing, so ski towns such as Queenstown will be at their busiest.
This itinerary is purely a suggestion and can be tailor-made to your requirements, so please contact us with your dates and requests, and we’ll put together a bespoke quotation for you.