Rotorua, North Island
Melbourne, Victoria
Ayers Rock (Uluru), Australia
Snorkelling, Great Barrier Reef
Sydney Harbour Bridge
Franz Josef Glacier
Milford Sound, South Island

Highlights of Australia & New Zealand

22 day Escorted Tour - from £8187

With flights from £9637

Vastly different in size, and offering unique landscapes and experiences, Australia and New Zealand share a reputation for warm hospitality and great cuisine.

Highlights:

  • Snorkel the Great Barrier Reef
  • Explore Australia’s most iconic city, Sydney
  • Cross the Southern Alps on the TranzAlpine train
  • Cruise through the stunning Milford Sound
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Your Itinerary

Day 1 - Welcome to Melbourne

On arrival you will be transferred to your hotel. This evening join your Travel Director and fellow travellers for a welcome reception and dinner.

Hotel: Crowne Plaza Hotel Melbourne
Meals: Dinner

Day 2 - Melbourne

Explore Melbourne on a city sights tour this morning, then discover its gracious arcades, eclectic laneways and vibrant street art on a private walking tour. The rest of the day is at your leisure.

Hotel: Crowne Plaza Hotel Melbourne
Meals: Breakfast

Day 3 - Melbourne

Today is free for you to further explore the delights of Melbourne. Alternatively, you could take an optional trip along the renowned Great Ocean Road.

Hotel: Crowne Plaza Hotel Melbourne
Meals: Breakfast

Day 4 - Ayers Rock (Uluru)

Get excited for a bucket list experience today as you depart Melbourne to the sacred, ancient site of Uluru. Flying over dry salt lakes and red desert before your first of many visits to Uluru Kata Tjuta National Park over the next two days. In Aussie’s cultural heartland amidst the rusty red landscape, you’re treated to a classic Uluru sundowner of nibbles and sparkling wine.

You’ll conclude your epic day at the Desert Gardens Hotel for a Stays with Stories experience. This indigenous-owned hotel surrounded by desert trees and distant Uluru showcases the natural beauty of the landscape and is a beautiful spot to stay in and relax or join an Uluru BBQ Dinner Optional Experience, watching the changing desert colours and enjoying an informative star talk of the southern night sky

Hotel: Desert Gardens Hotel, Ayers Rock Resort
Meals: Breakfast

Day 5 - Uluru

Experience Uluru in a different light with magical sunrise. Savour every second as, hot cocoa in hand, the dawn makes its way across the desert and illuminates Uluru. After a grand start to the day, tour the base of Uluru with your Travel Director to learn about its ancient rock and art hear stories of the Anangu people, caretakers of this remote arid landscape. After history and natural beauty are interwoven in this memorable morning, you’ll then have a bit of free time to go for a dip in the pool or browse the shops and galleries of Town Square shopping village before continuing your journey through the desert plains to Kata Tjuta. Explore on a walk amidst its towering, mindboggling domes through Walpa (meaning “wind”) Gorge to a lookout. You’re then treated to another stellar sunset from a different vantage point at Kata Tjuta. Without many of the crowds at Uluru, you may have the beauty of this Hidden Gem to yourself. A glass of sparkling wine with new travel mates in a beautiful setting is the perfect way to end your day.

Hotel: Desert Gardens Hotel

Day 6 - Cairns

Your last day at Uluru is off to another gorgeous start with an exclusive, private visit to the kaleidoscopic Field of Light art installation of artist Bruce Munro. Experience the darkness of night change to a rainbow-coloured dawn lit up from a field of changing colours with Uluru in the distance. You’ll feel like you’re walking through flowers in this totally unique Uluru sunrise experience, then as dawn continues to creep across the land, you’ll end the experience watching the desert awaken over Uluru from the top of a sand dune, coffee or tea in hand You’ve already seen so much beauty this morning and now it’s time to make some of your own as you Dive into Culture with a Local Specialist Aboriginal artist at Maruku Arts Dot Art Experience. You’ll learn about Western Desert Art from Indigenous artists before painting your own piece of Australian aboriginal art as a memento.

End your day heading to Cairns for a change of scenery and more beautiful sites.

Hotel: Shangri-La Hotel Cairns

Day 7 - Cairns

Today you get to experience Cairns your way with a full day to explore this tropical city or head out on an Optional Experience. Why not take in the view with a balloon flight over the Atherton Tablelands, the hot air ballooning capital of the southern hemisphere? Or, explore the Daintree Rainforest diving into nature on a guided, interpretive walk learning traditional hunting and gathering skills as you search for bush tucker of mud crabs, fish, and mussels and feast on your catch. You could also see the rainforest on a historic rail journey winding across bridges and through tunnels to Kuranda village where you’ll explore its colourful and interesting arts and crafts. Enjoy a different view soaring through the trees on your return trip on the Skyrail Rainforest Cableway. Looking for a bit of wildlife on your adventure? Pair your trip to Kuranda with a visit to Hartley’s Crocodile for a wetlands cruise through the ecologically significant Melaleuca wetlands, the home of the saltwater crocodile. After another incredible day exploring, share your stories and photos of the day over an optional dinner at Ochre Restaurant enjoying local fare using native ingredients

Hotel: Shangri-La Cairns
Meals: Breakfast

Day 8 - Cairns

Experience the beauty of the UNESCO World Heritage Site Great Barrier Reef over a day of play on the water. The day begins as you board a high-speed catamaran and then it’s up to you how you’d like to explore this underwater wonderland: Don your mask and fins (equipment provided) for an immersive look at this kaleidoscope of fishes and reef. Or, stay dry and explore the world’s largest living reef system from the comfort of a semi-submersible craft. However you adventure, the whole way you’re surrounded by beauty and insights on the local ecology and environment from your local guide. Be sure to just kick back, too. Your cruise includes an onboard tropical lunch and plenty of time to soak up the glorious Aussie sunshine. Sure to be a bucket list day, relive the highlights with your travel mates over dinner on the Cairns’ waterfront at Salt House. Here you’ll indulge in regional seafood highlighting fresh, local ingredients and prepared on their custom-built wood fired grill

Hotel: Shangri-La Cairns
Meals: Breakfast, lunch and dinner

Day 9 - Sydney

It’s ‘farewell, Cairns’ and ‘hello, Sydney’ on the last leg of your Australia highlights tour.

Check into your Sydney hotel before discovering the delightful Sydney Harbour from the water on a Dinner Cruise. Not only will you cruise past the world-famous Opera House and under the Sydney Harbour Bridge, you will enjoying a menu focusing on local food and wine as you’re rewarded with these stellar views.

Hotel: Intercontinental Sydney
Meals: Breakfast and dinner

Day 10 - Sydney

There’s plenty to discover in Sydney today and you’ll kick it off on a behind-the-scenes guided tour of the iconic Sydney Opera House. Entering through the stage door, you’ll hear the story of a building ‘that changed the image of an entire country’ as you learn the history of this iconic structure and appreciate its beauty from another perspective. Next up is another iconic Sydney site: Bondi Beach. Not only will you get to see the Bondi Icebergs ocean pool, dip your toes in the sand, and soak up the surfer life but you will have a local Surf Life Saver take you into the members only Bondi Surf Life Savers Club. This experience not only takes you behind the scenes to learn about this historic club, but you will gain an in depth understanding of the important work that these members do in saving lives on this famous beach. Your hosts will take you to a celebrated Bondi Beach restaurant for lunch with views over this stunning beach.

Hotel: Intercontinental Hotel Sydney
Meals: Breakfast and lunch

Day 11 - Sydney

The bustling city of Sydney is yours to see the sights, or you might choose to venture farther out on an Optional Experience. If you’re looking to get out in nature, join a day trip to the spectacular Blue Mountains. The first stop is at the Sydney Zoo for a fun and fascinating look at Australia’s native animals including wombats, Tasmanian devils, and of course, koalas before the eucalypt haze of the Blue Mountains looming in the distance, for fresh mountain air and breathtaking scenery. Here you’ll visit the famous Three Sisters rock formation—each towering at over 900 metres high—to hear the Aboriginal legend and soak in the views. Wherever you venture, there’s dining options aplenty from the waterfront Circular Quay to Chinatown’s famous yum cha to a rooftop bar for dazzling views of the harbour

Hotel: Intercontinental Hotel Sydney
Meals: Breakfast

Day 12 - Sydney

Enjoy a day at leisure exploring Sydney at your own pace. However you chose to spend your day, you’ll end by gathering with your travel companions and Travel Director for a celebratory three-course Farwell Dinner at Portside Sydney Opera House to recap your favourite sites in Australia. Cheers to an epic adventure!

Hotel: Intercontinental Hotel Sydney
Meals: Breakfast and dinner

Day 13 - Auckland

Set your sights on New Zealand as you fly to Auckland, the City of Sails. You’ll see how the city got its nickname as you fly in over the islands and boats in the harbour. In fact, one in four New Zealanders owns a boat! On land, Auckland is known for being built on 53 dormant volcanoes (Two of which you have the opportunity to see!) And if you’re seeking a cosmopolitan vibe, Auckland will not disappoint. The city’s melting pot of cultures means there are a variety of restaurants, from the glamorous to the local hot spots, for you to sample both international and New Zealand fare. Enjoy simple and classic Italian fare at Gusto at the Grand this evening joining your Travel Director for an introduction to this colourful city.

Hotel: The Grand by SkyCity, Auckland
Meals: Breakfast and dinner

Day 14 - Auckland

A morning city sightseeing tour and cruise on Waitemata Harbour is followed by free time to relax or explore Auckland, the largest city in the North Island.

Hotel: The Grand by SkyCity, Auckland
Meals: Breakfast

Day 15 - Rotorua

You’re invited to a sumptuous country style Be My Guest lunch today on the beautiful Waikato farm of Lance and Bridgette O’Sullivan, New Zealand horse racing royalty. This evening, enjoy a traditional Māori Hangi Highlight Dinner and a concert at the Tamaki Family Marae.

Hotel: Millennium Hotel, Rotorua
Meals: Breakfast and dinner

Day 16 - Queenstown

Your day starts with breakfast at Hobbiton, experience the iconic rolling hills and green pastures of the Hobbiton Movie Set as seen in The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit trilogies before continuing to Auckland to board your flight to Queenstown. Tonight, speak with your Travel Director about dining recommendations in Queenstown.

Hotel: Millennium, Queenstown
Meals: Breakfast

Day 17 - Milford Sound

Journey along the shores of Lake Wakatipu, over the Devil’s Staircase and along to Te Anau and its lake, the largest in the South Island. Experience magnificent scenery as you continue along this alpine highway to Fiordland National Park. Enjoy numerous photo opportunities afforded by the Mirror Lakes, Knobs Flat, Hollyford Valley lookout (Pop’s view), Cleddau Valley and the Chasm, drive through the hand-hewn Homer Tunnel towards the iconic Mitre Peak and the Bowen Falls before reaching Milford Sound. Enjoy lunch and a cruise on this wonder of nature. Later, return to Queenstown for the evening.

Hotel: Millennium, Queenstown
Meals: Breakfast & lunch

Day 18 - Queenstown

Today choose from a range of optional sightseeing experiences. You could ride the world famous’ Shotover Jet or enjoy a cruise across Lake Wakatipu aboard the TSS Earnslaw to Walter Peak High Country Farm for a gourmet barbecue lunch at the Colonel’s Homestead. This evening, join your Travel Director for dinner at Postmasters Cottage.

Hotel: Millennium Hotel, Queenstown
Meals: Breakfast & dinner

Day 19 - Lake Tekapo

Today you will leave the alpine wonderland of Queenstown behind, traveling through Central Otago to the Mackenzie region with time along the way to stop in Arrowtown then Cromwell, situated next to the pristine Lake Dunstan and taste delicious stone fruit at a local orchard. Continue over the dramatic Lindis Pass before reaching the Starlight Highway and Tekapo’s world renowned UNESCO Aoraki McKenzie International Dark Sky Reserve. This afternoon enjoys the views of Mt Cook before heading to the iconic Church of the Good Shephard. This evening, see amazing constellations that can only be seen in the southern hemisphere, including the Southern Cross, to the Magellanic Clouds and the Milky Way. Your local specialist expert astronomy guide will enhance your knowledge and understanding of our Southern Skies as you admire and ponder the possibilities through our powerful optical telescopes.

Hotel: Peppers Bluewater Resort
Meals: Breakfast & dinner

Day 20 - Christchurch

Enjoy a relaxed start before heading north through South Canterbury, visit the charming boutique village of Geraldine as you travel through to Christchurch.

Hotel: Distinction, Christchurch
Meals: Breakfast

Day 21 - Christchurch

After a Christchurch city sights tour, you’re invited to a Be My Guest morning tea at the home of Tim and Isabelle Weston, owners of Britten Stables. Formerly a horse stables for nearby Mona Vale Gardens and following that, the birthplace of the world-record-setting Britten V1000 motorcycle designed and built in the garage by Isabelle’s late father, John Britten. The couple restored the original charm of Britten Stables and transformed it into the exquisite home that it is today. This evening, join your AAT Kings Travel Director and Driver, and your new-found friends for a farewell dinner.

Meals: Breakfast & dinner

Day 22 - Farewell from Christchurch

Your AAT Kings New Zealand holiday concludes this morning after breakfast. Your flights can depart any time today, and you will be transferred to Christchurch Airport.

22 day Escorted Tour - from £8187

With flights from £9637

OPTIONS

  • Add nights in Melbourne or Christchurch, before or after your tour
  • Choose to fly Economy, Premium, Business or First Class
  • Add a stopover to Australia in Dubai, Singapore or another destination

Include this Escorted Tour in an Australia holiday
designed for you

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All prices are per person, based on 2 sharing a double or twin room and include internal flights and meals shown. Seasonal supplements may apply. Please call Freedom Destinations to confirm departure dates and availability. 

Highlights of Australia & New Zealand Map

Your Touring Experience

We are proud to partner with AAT Kings to provide first class touring across Australia. Our experienced guides will make sure you don’t miss a thing.

Your escorted tour includes:

  • Sightseeing, walks and activities
  • Luxury, air conditioned coach travel
  • En suite hotel accommodation
  • Daily breakfast and meals shown
  • Extra night options
  • Return airport transfers
  • Internal flights

See more Australia escorted tours…

See more New Zealand escorted tours…

Departure Dates

Check for departure dates that suit you:

2022-08-28

2022-09-11

2022-09-25

2022-10-09

2022-10-30

2022-11-06

2022-11-13

2022-11-20

2022-11-27

2022-12-11

2022-12-25

2023-01-01

2023-01-08

2023-01-15

2023-01-22

2023-01-29

2023-02-05

2023-02-12

2023-02-19

2023-02-26

2023-03-05

2023-03-12

2023-03-19

2023-03-26

To confirm availability call 0333 234 2889

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