Australia and New Zealand are defined by their rare indigenous wildlife; kangaroos that hop across the desert landscapes, exotic kiwis that fall beneath the trees, sperm whales who flop across ocean waves. This 18-day tour reveals all of the iconic sights, from sleepy koalas to playful dolphin pods, tropical birds to ethereal marine worlds. Enjoy an intimate journey through the wild landscapes to come face to face with the full array of the South Pacific's wildlife.
Melbourne – Welcome to Australia
Melbourne provides a gentle welcome to Australia, the city defined by the Yarra River and a long stretch of empty beaches. Even in the heart of the city, there is a sense that wild lands lie nearby. You will be picked up from the airport, and transferred to a hotel along the coast where the scent of the Southern Ocean comes straight onto your verandah. After the long international flight, it's a perfect place to relax and garner your first impressions of the country's landscapes.
Melbourne – Kangaroos and Koalas in the Wild
Melbourne – A Relaxed Day in the Yarra Valley
Day 4 - 5
Kangaroo Island – Lost in Australia's Great Natural Paradise
Uluru – A Mystical Camel Train to Kata Tjuta
Uluru to Cairns – Sunrise Ballooning Above Uluru
Day 8 - 9
Cairns – Exploring the Great Barrier Reef
Auckland – Welcome to New Zealand
Auckland – Spotting New Zealand's Exotic and Endangered Birds
Wellington to Kapiti Island – Kiwis in the Native Forest
Wellington to Kaikoura – Followed Across the Cook Straight by Dolphins
Day 14 - 15
Kaikoura – Intimate Tours to Discover Six Different Whale Species
Nelson to Stewart Island – Journeying to the Southern Tip of New Zealand
Stewart Island – A Completely Untouched Rainforest Landscape
Stewart Island to Christchurch – Departure
- Immediately immerse yourself in Australia's famous characters with a kangaroo and koala tour near Melbourne
- Discover the mystique of Uluru with a sunset camel tour and a sunrise balloon ride
- Spend two days cruising through the waters around Kaikoura to seek out giant sperm whales and the five other whale species that migrate through the area
- Explore the world's largest marine paradise with a range of activities at the Great Barrier Reef
- New Zealand's native forests are alive with the tweets of exotic birds and a journey through Tiritiri Matangi Island helps you discover it all
- Immerse yourself in the remote island of Ulva, a natural haven that's completely devoid of introduced species
- Find the iconic kiwi, an endangered flightless bird that's synonymous with the country
- Wallow in the abundance of marsupial life found on Kangaroo Island, Australia's remote animal outpost
The wildlife of Australia and New Zealand is as bizarre as it is beautiful. Mobs of kangaroos hop across the fertile plains and desert landscapes. Flightless kiwis and takahes leave their colors on the forest floor, while orcas jump from ocean waters. Koalas sleepily cling to their trees, eyes half-closed, while dolphins seem permanently awake, their fins rising effortlessly past your boat cruise. All of these species inhabit vast and wild landscapes, their havens ranging from red desert to untouched islands. This unique luxury tour takes you on a journey through all of the unusual species and offers safari moments with the great icons of the South Pacific. This trip is not a zoo-like experience, rather a chance to explore the native landscapes that teem with the countries' unique characters.
Start in Australia with a royal welcome provided by the kangaroos hopping in the plains outside Melbourne. Several relaxed days include everything from wine tasting to cute koalas clinging to trees. Kangaroo Island continues the marsupial theme, and you're surrounded; as in most destinations on this itinerary, you're engrossed in all the drama and charm of the interaction between the animals. At sacred Uluru, travel by camel caravan and then by hot air balloon before spending several nights in Cairns, the jumping point for the Great Barrier Reef, and there are various ways to go beneath the surface.
New Zealand's flightless birds continue to inhabit the country's native forest, and Tiritiri Matangi is a great introduction to their exotic colors. Move to Kapiti Island to seek out the famous kiwi before you cross the Cook Straight to Kaikoura. A remarkable six different whale species travel through the waters here, and two days of boat cruises ensure that you get close to their large frames. Sperm whales usually steal the show, along with dolphins and fur seals – they are the marine residents in these parts rather than the migrants. Stewart Island, and neighboring Ulva Island, provide your final stop, both islands completely untouched by invasive species and resemble what New Zealand looked like before the Europeans arrived. A couple of nights in this lost paradise provide a symbolic conclusion to the tour as it reveals kaleidoscopic landscapes and indigenous wildlife.
$5,845 per person (excluding international flights)
Your Zicasso trip is fully customizable, and this sample itinerary is a starting place for your travel plans. Actual costs are dynamic, and your selection of accommodations and activities, your season of travel, and other such variables will bring this budget guideline up or down. Throughout your planning experience with your Zicasso specialist, your itinerary is designed around your budget. You can book your trip when you are satisfied with every detail. Planning your trip with a Zicasso travel specialist is a free service.
- In-country transportation
- Some or all activities and tours
- Expert trip planning
- 24x7 support during your trip
Your final trip cost will vary based on your selected accommodations, activities, meals, and other trip elements that you opt to include.
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