Extraordinary Nature & Wildlife: 14-Day Australia Tour

A 14 day trip to Australia 
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Kangaroos bounce as koalas cling to branches. Penguins will waddle as Tasmanian devils hide in the trees. This is Australia, home to the most unique wildlife along with the most diverse, wild settings. From the endless outback to the Great Barrier Reef, green Tasmanian plains to red Kakadu slopes, this is the ultimate Australian wildlife and nature tour that encompasses life on the ground and in the water. So, jump into the adventure and discover the most inimitable land on the planet.

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Most tours are customized for private travel.

General Information

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Detailed Itinerary

Places Visited 

Melbourne, St Kilda, Phillip Island, Koala Conservation Centre, The Nobbies, Narawntapu National Park, Tasmania, Mount William National Park, Freycinet National Park, Hobart, Cairns, Trinity Bay, Thetford Reef, Sudbury Cay, Hinchinbrook Channel, Pelorus Island, Dunk Island, Nathan Reef, Fitzroy Island, Darwin, Kakadu National Park, Bamurru Plains, Sampan River, Uluru, Kata Tjuta

Departure Dates 

Dates are flexible and customizable for private departures.

Detailed Itinerary 

Day 1: Melbourne – Relaxing and Getting Ready for the Adventure

Although Melbourne is Australia’s greenest city, it is not big on wildlife, but it does have spacious parks and a magnificent botanical garden. It is also a comfortable place to relax after a flight, with an abundance of cafes and restaurants that will be walking distance from your hotel. Your hotel will be on the beach, just South of the city. You will check in and spend the day growing accustomed to the foreign time zone, dozing off on the sand, or relaxing beneath a gum tree near the Yarra River. There is so much wildlife and bush to come, so take your time today and get ready for the adventure that awaits you.

What’s Included: airport transfer, accommodation

Day 2: Melbourne – Penguins and Wild Koalas on Phillip Island

Penguins will waddle across Phillip Island beaches. The colony is huge, with hundreds of penguins starting antics on the sand. Some will waddle off into the sea to go fishing, while others will head up to their nesting sites. A more sedate species also covers the island. Koalas are placid and hardly move all day. This makes them relatively easy to spot, and when koalas cling to low-lying branches, you can get incredibly close. Echidnas and swamp wallabies can also be spotted around here.

What’s Included: accommodation, tour, breakfast

Days 3 – 4: Mount Willian National Park (Tasmania) – Exploring Handpicked Natural Highlights in Tasmania

You will then fly to Hobart and head straight to Tasmania’s national parks. Almost a third of this island is protected as reserves and parks, providing a haven for more species than anywhere else in Australia. Narawntapu will be a fine introduction, where red-necked wallabies will hop across dusty ground and wombats will hide just beside the trail. Before driving to the hugely under-visited Mount William National Park, you might spot a Tasmanian devil. Silence will dominate here. There will not be much life around midday, but the park will become an action-packed safari from late-afternoon through sunset.

Kangaroos will cover the plains in large mobs, and wallabies are even more plentiful and more likely to come closer to you. You do not really need to look for all this life as you can hear it and spot it regularly while exploring the park. So instead, the guide will focus on a rarer creature: Tasmanian devils. These animals are cantankerous and highly endangered. After dark will come new life such as owls, nightjars, tawny frogmouths, and perhaps a troupe of wallabies. You will spend these two nights at a cabin retreat within the park, with day four dedicated to the desolate corners of a very remote national park.

What’s Included: accommodation, tour, breakfast

Day 5: Freycinet National Park (Tasmania) – Nocturnal Wildlife and Seabirds

Freycinet is Tasmania’s most popular park, and you will notice the change in atmosphere. It is easy to understand the popularity, especially when staying on Wineglass Bay and searching for the range of seabirds. White-bellied sea eagles will soar overhead as gannets and black-faced cuckoos fly closer to your eyeline. You will have the opportunity to view many different species of birds here. Once more there will be a chance to see the rare and elusive Tasmanian devils.

What’s Included: accommodation, tour, breakfast

Day 6: Hobart to Cairns to Thetford Reef – Setting Off on the Great Barrier Reef

After an optional sunrise wildlife walk, you will return to Hobart and fly to Cairns, where you will swap a rugged, Southern island for the sun-kissed coral of the Great Barrier Reef. Your cruise will depart mid-afternoon, traveling through Trinity Bay to an exclusive mooring at Thetford Reef. There will be time to jump beneath the surface and start counting the 1,500 fish species that live here, with hump-headed Maori wrasse and giant trevally being the most conspicuous giants. Even on your first snorkel, you will appreciate that the highlights are not just the fish but the coral itself, as a whole kaleidoscope of colors will be shining beneath the surface. This is just the first of your underwater explorations, too. There will be three more days to come and experience this Great Barrier Reef cruise.

What’s Included: accommodation, tour, breakfast

Days 7 – 8: Great Barrier Reef – A Luxury Great Barrier Reef Cruise

Dolphin fins will rise and fall, and turtles will be spotted at shallow reefs. Around mangroves, you will search for dugongs, which are strange creatures that frolic and feed on sea grass. You can snorkel at different reefs, and scuba dive should you wish, while absorbing the inimitability of a landscape that is visible from space. With a four-day cruise, you can explore many different reefs that make up The Great Barrier Reef. Most importantly, you can visit the outer reefs, which are those that are mostly untouched and most abundant in terms of underwater life and diversity.

The boat will have a glass bottom, so you do not always need to get wet to enjoy it all. At every stop, there will be a guided snorkeling excursion, or you can swim off for your own exploration. Mixed into all the marine life, you will disembark at uninhabited islands, eat barbecues on the beach and walk through the dense rainforest. Dunk Island will prove to be a superb place for birding, with yellow-bellied sunbirds and orange-footed scrubfowl among the rare inhabitants. Then, Nathan Reef will take marine exploration into a new dimension. Both of these days will be action packed with at least three different stops.

What’s Included: accommodation, tour, breakfast

Day 9: Cairns to Darwin – Relaxing by the Crocodiles

You will have more underwater adventures this morning. Fitzroy Island will be the only stop on route back to Cairns, which is an island that is famed for its white sand beaches and fringing reefs that are easy for all levels of snorkelers. By 1 pm, you will be back in Cairns, and it is straight to the airport for a Darwin-bound flight. You will touch down in a bucolic little city on the water, and there should be enough light left to glimpse a crocodile down at the river. The adventures will continue in earnest tomorrow, so you may want to take this evening to rest and relax, catching your breath after the cruise while preparing for the wild and dry landscapes that are to come.

What’s Included: accommodation, tour, breakfast

Days 10 – 12: Kakadu National Park – Wild Adventures in the Northern Territory

Kakadu will glisten in ochre morning splendor, and a low-lying haze will add to the mystique as your four-wheel drive kicks up dust and heads into the wilderness. This will be an immense space, mostly unexplored and unknown except to local Aborigines. Wildlife thrives here although it will not be as easily spotted as elsewhere on your journey. You may be lucky enough to spot a mob of kangaroos or wallabies.

Birdlife is very impressive, and the experience can be operatic. Sometimes flocks will cover the sky, and you will be treated to a flurry of activity and harmonious chirps. At other times, you will have to wait patiently, following audio clues to a pair of blue wings. This is wild bushland, and it is ripe for exploration.

You cannot see Kakadu in a day as it takes about half of a day just to reach the real wilderness. Three days will allow a loop around the park’s most iconic features. Daytimes here will be all about adventure. You can eat breakfast at dawn by the remains of last night’s fire or hike and drive on rarely covered paths. You will be staying in wilderness cabins where the skies are magnificent, especially when you are sitting around the fire and appreciating a world away from Wi-Fi and modern life. The accommodation will be more than comfortable while also preserving Kakadu’s wilderness feel. So, rest, shower, fall asleep, and then wake up to the kookaburras call once more. That will be the rhythm in Kakadu, and it is yours for three full days.

What’s Included: accommodation, tour, breakfast

Day 13: Darwin to Uluru – Sunset at the Magnificent Red Rock

After three days in remote Kakadu, it may feel surreal to be back in Darwin, even if the city is hardly larger than an outpost. Do not worry, you will be back out in the outback before the day is out. You will fly from Darwin to Uluru and spend the afternoon at a rock. This is not just a rock. It is a place of sanctuary, a place of beauty, a symbol of an older Aboriginal time, and probably the most impressive sunset point you will ever encounter. Savor it all in before a final night beneath the stars as the southern sky will become an omnipresent highlight of your trip to Australia.

What’s Included: accommodation, tour, breakfast

Day 14: Uluru – Sunrise with Kata Tjuta and Departure

Twenty-six domes will slowly rise from the shadows as an orange hue will creep up as the rising sun glides higher. These sacred rocks will seem inconceivable on an otherwise featureless landscape. You will watch the sunrise and then head into a valley that runs through Kata Tjuta, seeking a remote waterfall and the eerie sound of wind breezing past you. It will be a fitting final highlight to your two weeks in Australia. After a second breakfast, you will be dropped at Uluru for a domestic flight back to Melbourne, where you will transfer onto your outbound flight.

What’s Included: airport transfer, breakfast

Price

Starting Price 

$3,495
This trip is customizable for your private travel.

What's Included 

  • Accommodations
  • In-country transportation
  • Some or all guided tours and activities (dependent on season)
  • Expert trip planning
  • 24x7 support during your trip
The starting price is based on travel during the low season for a minimum of two travelers staying in shared 3-star accommodations. Please inquire for a custom trip quote based on your travel preferences and travel dates.