This Australia travel agency knows Australia and they are top notch travel professionals. We gave them a general idea of where we wanted to go, our budget and how we wanted to spend our time and they came back with appropriate suggestions based on our specific criteria. We left the selection of the hotels (family friendly) totally up to them which worked out great. An unexpected added bonus in working with this Australia travel agency is their Australian partners. While there, we had to make a number of very last minute changes and their Australian partners treated us with the same level of professionalism, including calling us back on Easter Sunday and working out the change of plans immediately.
The Low Isles (2nd pic) - Great Barrier Inner Reef trip was unanimously voted the top excursion for this vacation. The boat was very nice and not crowded (75 people) and the marine biologist was really knowledgeable The food was amazing and the island was just beautiful. We really liked the pace of the day. The Outer Reef was also good, but the boat was full (450 people), and although they certainly know how to manage this number of people, the pace was quite a bit more rushed. We felt a bit crowded which we may not have noticed except that we had the Low Isles trip as a point of comparison. The reef in both locations was great, but there were more fish variety in the Outer Reef. We heard after the Outer Reef trip that there are smaller excusions for more experienced divers/snorklers that might have suited us better, but really no big deal all things considered.
The Kuranda Rainforest day (4th pic below) was wonderful; we enjoyed each aspect of the day far more than we thought we would. Although touristy, we enjoyed the train ride through the rain forest (10th pic); the cute little village of Kuranda has great shopping for Australian made stuff; the petting zoo was wonderful; we loved the Skyrail ride over the mountains; and completely enjoyed the Tjapukai Cultural Village (9th pic). This was a great way to spend the day and learn about Australian history and culture. We highly recommend this excursion to everyone who visits this area.
The Daintree Rain Forest tour was disappointing. You only walk about 100 yards into the forest with a guide (Jane) who was loves spiders and not much else made that part of the day rather boring. The rest of the day (Cape Tribulation (5th pic), Mossman Gorge) were great. All the other guides were very knowledgeable.
The ONE thing we really wished we had known about and would have planned differently was the impacted of the 4 day Easter holiday weekend (Friday through Monday). We made all own flight arrangements so the Australia travel agency did not do travel timing. As luck would have it, we traveled on Good Friday from Cairns to Sydney and from Sydney to the Blue Mountains the next day. The airports were mobbed, lines for the rental car were really long, so a lot of time was wasted. The whole country is on holiday and Australian travel extensively to be with family. This is like traveling the Thanksgiving holiday weekend in the US . It was a bumper-to-bumper ride for 30 miles once we left Sydney on a two lane "Motorway" out to Kootumba. The road is under construction to become a four lane highway, but it will be years before that's finished. The Blue Mountains are a favorite family resort area to spend the weekend, so every restaurant was full and parking was a pain. We ended up leaving a day early after our planned excursion (repelling down cliffs which was fantastic), and went back to Sydney. Our guide for the repelling excursion gave us a back route around the traffic with a better view of the mountains as a bonus. So we left Kootumba and the Three Sisters (6th pic) in far better spirits then when we arrived