Day 1: Darwin, Northern Territory
Welcome to Australia and the beginning of an extraordinary journey! Arrive into Darwin and relax into a downtown hotel, within walking distance to restaurants, shops, and a walking path along Darwin Harbour. Consider a sunset sail to gain your bearings and celebrate that you’re here, in the Land Down Under!
Days 2-4: Kakadu and Arnhemland, Northern Territory
Rise and shine! Four days in the heart of the Northern Territory on an outback safari is in store, with a focus on two of the most unique areas of northern Australia, Kakadu National Park with the highest concentration of Aboriginal rock art sites in the world, and Arnhem Land, the largest Aboriginal reserve in Australia. Immerse into the area’s history and culture by day, retreating to a comfortable safari camp each evening. Highlights on the safari include the Fogg Dam Reserve, jumping crocodiles on the Adelaide River, Leaning Tree Lagoon, Gunlom, the South Alligator Valley, floodplains, billabongs, and the Arnhem Land Escarpments. Enjoy this immersion into the Northern Territory.
Days 5-8: Bullo River Station, Northern Territory
Spend one last morning in Arnhem Land, then head for Bullo River Station, a vast, remote ranch on Bumurru Plains at the edge of the Mary River Delta. This is an authentic, Australian Outback experience, and an area prolific in wildlife and birdlife. “Wild Bush Luxury” describes your accommodations, simple, stylish safari-style bungalows, and hearty and delicious describe each meal. Days are spent fishing, cattle mustering, branding, horseback riding, wildlife viewing, quad biking, and more.
Day 9: Darwin, Northern Territory
Back to “civilization” with another night in Darwin.
Days 10-11: Ayers Rock, Northern Territory
An early morning awaits, with a flight to Ayers Rock. Settle in to exquisite accommodations at Longitude 131, an excellent base for exploring the geologic and cultural wonders of Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park – and for watching the sun set behind Uluru from the dinner table! Be fascinated and take in the beauty with guided outings to Uluru at sunset, Kantju Gorge, Walpa Gorge, Mutitjulu, and more.
Days 12-13: Adelaide, South Australia
Today takes you south – a mere 2,000 miles – to Adelaide, the capital city of South Australia, and the launching point for your next adventures. Explore the city from centrally located accommodations in a renovated fire station. Walk to boutique shops, galleries, and excellent restaurants, and venture further to visit the Migration Museum, Art Gallery of South Australia, pedestrian street mall, Adelaide Botanical Garden, and Adelaide Central market.
Days 14-15: McLaren Vale and Wine Country, South Australia
McLaren Vale’s early 19th century beginnings were in vineyards, and by 1850, there was a winery. Today, in this small town of 3,500, you’ll find 70! Small inns and bed and breakfasts are scattered between the Shiraz Trail, the Cheese and Wine Trail, off-trail wineries, and beaches. Cheers – and we mean it!
Days 16-17: Kangaroo Island, South Australia
Follow the coastline south to Cape Jervis, then catch the ferry to Kangaroo Island, nine miles from the mainland and host to some of the country’s most spectacular wildlife and nature reserves – hence, its nickname, the “Australian Galapagos.” Wildlife you might see includes sea lions, fur seals, kangaroos, wallabies, koalas, echidnas, platypus, goannas, possums, bandicoots, whales, and 260 bird species. Settle in to a friendly, local inn or bed and breakfast, and explore all day long! Spend a full day on a Flinders Chase Focus Tour, with sand dunes, a fur seal colony, and a spectacular picnic lunch spot.
Day 18: Adelaide, South Australia
Savor your coffee this morning while taking in the surrounding nature and beauty. Then, return to Penneshaw Port for a ferry ride back to the mainland and one more night in Adelaide!
Day 19: Overland Train to Melbourne, Victoria
All aboard! Enjoy a relaxing train ride, The Overland Experience, to Melbourne, kicking back, taking in the scenery, and reflecting on your travels so far. Out the window you’ll see a range of landscapes, from rugged bushland to fields of green and gold. Spend the night in Victoria’s capital city, and the second largest city in Australia. Melbourne is oft described as youthful, livable, friendly, multi-cultural, sport-loving, and the “Arts Capital of Australia.” Stay in a downtown hotel on the splendid Southbank Promenade, with easy access to city sites on foot and by tram.
Days 20-21: Great Ocean Road, Victoria
The Great Ocean Road is one of the world's most scenic coastal drives, featuring the iconic 12 Apostles, surf breaks, waterfalls, historic shipwrecks, and an array of wildlife. Spend two days on a guided walk along the coast, retreating to Chris’s Beacon Point Restaurant and Villas at each day’s end.
Days 22-24: Sydney, New South Wales
Fly from Melbourne to Sydney, Australia’s most iconic city, and enjoy two days of exploring to your heart’s content. From accommodations on the famous harbor, views are extraordinary! Head out on a Sydney Highlights Tour with a seaside picnic lunch, and a Behind the Scenes Tour of the Sydney Opera House.
Days 25-28: Port Douglas and the Great Barrier Reef, Queensland
Going almost full circle, hop on one last flight north to Queensland, to take in the Great Barrier Reef and Daintree Rainforest, from the exclusive Thala Beach Nature Reserve. From your base, there will be opportunities for a number of remarkable outings. Four days, four adventures – a Snapper Island Kayaking, Low Isles Sailboat Cruise and Heritage Walk, Daintree Rainforest Cultural Tour, and one day to enjoy all that Thala Beach has to offer – nature walks, bird walks, butterfly walks, indigenous presentations, star gazing, and more.
Day 29: Fly Home from Cairns
After a lengthy, authentic, Australian encounter, the time has come to return home.
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