Day 1 UK - Melbourne
Today you'll depart on your scheduled flight to Melbourne.
Days 2 & 3 Melbourne
On early arrival in the beautiful city of Melbourne on day 3, we'll transfer you to your hotel. You'll have time to settle in and freshen up before heading off on an included sightseeing tour this afternoon. One of the world's most liveable cities, it's packed with attractions from renowned art galleries and vibrant markets to world-class restaurants and legendary sports venues.
Day 4 Melbourne - at Leisure
You can spend the day at leisure, making your own discoveries in Melbourne, or you might be tempted to join an optional excursion to Phillip Island to watch the remarkable penguin parade. At sunset, after a hard day's fishing, hundreds of these delightful creatures - the world's smallest penguin - appear from out of the ocean and waddle their way across the beach to their sand dune burrows. You can take in this marvellous spectacle from special viewing stands and boardwalks, which give you the chance to get up close to nature.
Day 5 Melbourne - Sydney
This morning we'll transfer you to the airport for your flight to Sydney, where you'll stay for three nights. On this afternoon's tour you can tick off highlights including the gorgeous white sands of Bondi Beach, and Hyde Park, which is home to numerous monuments including the ANZAC Memorial. You'll also visit Darling Harbour, which hosts a dazzling array of attractions from bars and bistros to an aquarium and a zoo, as well as Mrs Macquarie's Chair. This huge sandstone rock was hand-carved by convicts into the shape of a bench for Governor Macquarie's wife, Elizabeth, in 1810. Why not sit for a while and take in the views from this wonderful vantage point. For an unforgettable experience, you can join an optional twilight dinner cruise aboard an authentic timber tall ship, complete with billowing sails.
Day 6 Sydney - at Leisure
With a day at leisure, you can discover Sydney at your own pace. As you explore you'll find that its centre is surprisingly compact.
Alternatively, you could choose to discover Sydney Harbour from the water. This hour-long optional cruise will introduce many wonderful sights, from beautiful gardens and parkland to the iconic Sydney Opera House and Bridge. For an entirely different perspective, you could take in exceptional views of Sydney Harbour and the surrounding area on a guided Sydney Harbour Bridge climb. Don't worry, you'll get a safety briefing beforehand and will wear a harness at all times. At the end you'll receive a group photo, a cap, certificate and a pass to the Pylon Lookout for further sweeping views.
Another option is to step beneath the sails and enjoy a guided tour of the Sydney Opera House. You'll learn about the history of the building, uncover stories about artists and the shows performed here and have an opportunity to visit areas usually off limits to the general public.
Day 7 Sydney - at Leisure
Enjoy a further day at leisure, or you can join us on a thrilling optional excursion. You'll head through the Blue Mountains, past the Three Sisters rock formation and along Jamieson Valley - Australia's answer to the Grand Canyon. Finally, you'll visit Scenic World where you can opt to take a journey on the world's steepest incline railway into ancient rainforest, or enjoy a cable-car ride over the valley.
Day 8 Sydney - Uluru
You'll fly to Uluru, also known as Ayers Rock, this morning via Alice Springs. This gigantic sandstone monolith, which is two miles long, 1,000ft high and measures six miles around the base, is located in Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park. One of the most impressive landmarks in Australia, this UNESCO World Heritage Site is a sacred place in Aboriginal culture and features many caves and ancient rock paintings. It's an incredible sight at any time of the day, but at sunrise and sunset it changes colour dramatically with the light. Your sunset visit this evening includes a cocktail.
This evening you can enjoy an optional visit to the impressive Field of Light installation.
Day 9 Uluru - Alice Springs
You've an early start today, but it's definitely worth it as you visit Uluru once again, but this time at sunrise. You can also tour the base of the rock and view Aboriginal rock paintings in the caves here. After this, we'll head to the mysterious Kata Tjuta, although you may know these 36 domed rock formations better as The Olgas. Located to the west of Uluru, they are thought to have similarly been one huge piece of rock but over millions of years they have been shaped this way by nature.
We then continue by road to Alice Springs, where you'll enjoy an authentic bush barbecue in the Australian Outback this evening. The fun starts at sunset as we take to the road to try to spot kangaroos. Before you eat you can try your hand at boomerang throwing, and afterwards you can indulge in a spot of stargazing.
Day 10 Alice Springs - at Leisure
You can spend today as you wish in Alice Springs. If you want to get out and about in the great outdoors, you could choose to join an optional excursion to the spectacular Western MacDonnell Mountain Ranges.
Day 11 Alice Springs - Darwin
This morning, head off on a fascinating tour that introduces you to the Flying Doctor Base and the old Telegraph Station, the original site of the first European settlement in central Australia, which is now a museum. You will also visit the famous School of the Air.
Later we'll transfer you to the airport for your flight to Darwin.
Day 12 Darwin - Kakadu National Park
Your destination today is Kakadu National Park, where you'll discover lush rainforest, scenic rivers and a diverse range of wildlife. It is most famed though for its natural galleries of fascinating Aboriginal rock art.
Before we make our way to our hotel, you've the chance to walk up Ubirr Rock, where you'll see some of the most outstanding examples of rock art in the world.
Day 13 Kakadu National Park - Katherine
A journey by road this morning takes us to Katherine via the stunning Nourlangie Rock. Here you can set off on a walk to see more Aboriginal rock art.
Next, head off on a thrilling cruise on the famous Yellow Water Lagoon, where you can look for many species of birds - from whistling ducks to eagles - and crocodiles in their natural habitat.
Day 14 Katherine - Darwin
Today's highlight is a cruise through the Katherine Gorge, to see ancient rocks and caves decorated with Aboriginal paintings. As you sail through this picturesque valley, expert guides will explain the history and geology of the area and tell you all about the flora and fauna you're likely to see. You'll step ashore for a walk before boarding another boat for your return journey.Meals included: B
Day 15 Darwin - Port Douglas
This morning we're heading to Cairns, with an onward transfer to Port Douglas. This picturesque resort boasts white-sand beaches and tropical rainforest, and it's your gateway to the Great Barrier Reef.Meals included: B
Day 16 Great Barrier Reef
Today you have the chance to explore a whole new world on an included trip by catamaran to the outer Great Barrier Reef. You'll see that marine life comes incredibly close to the vessel, and you can experience the reef without getting wet from the comfort of a semi-submersible or an underwater observatory. Of course, you can also go snorkelling in this amazing underwater world – all the equipment and guidance you need is provided, as well as lunch.Meals included: L
Day 17 Port Douglas - at Leisure
All you have to do now is relax and soak up the sun in Port Douglas. However, if you want to see more, a ride on the Kuranda Railway is an option today to see the Atherton Tablelands.
Your first stop will be the Skyrail Rainforest Cableway, where you'll glide over and through heritage rainforest. After free time in the village of Kuranda, you'll take a journey on the Kuranda Scenic Railway, with the Barron Falls just one of the incredible highlights.
Day 18 Port Douglas - at Leisure
You can spend today doing just as you wish, exploring at your own pace or simply enjoying the facilities at your hotel.
If you want to get out in the great outdoors, why not come with us on an optional trip to Daintree Rainforest. Daintree is an ecologically unique tropical forest, which is home to an extensive range of flora and fauna. Also included is an environmental wilderness cruise as you go in search of crocodiles with an expert guide. You'll then enjoy lunch at the Daintree Tea House and round off your excursion with a tour of Daintree.
Day 19 Port Douglas - Brisbane
Today we'll transfer you to the airport in Cairns for your flight to Brisbane. The capital of the Sunshine State, boasting 293 days a year of sunshine, Brisbane is a modern, bustling metropolis that sits on the banks of the Brisbane River. There is no shortage of things to see and do here including a vast array of restaurants, cafés and shops to explore. The Eat Street Market on the North Shore is always buzzing with activity and the sights, smells and tasty treats are well worth discovering. Head to the cliffs at New Farm Park for beautiful views of the iconic Story Bridge lit up at night, against the backdrop of the sparkling city, or enjoy a drink at one of the city's many rooftop bars. A great way to explore is on a CityCat, which takes you out into the river to explore from the water. The South Bank, Queensland's Cultural Precinct, is also well worth a visit. Here, you'll find Streets Beach, Australia's only beach that is located within a city!
Day 20 Brisbane - at Leisure
Before flying home tomorrow you might choose to spend a day at leisure. Alternatively, why not join an optional excursion to North Stradbroke Island. Fondly known as Straddie by the locals, it is the world's second largest sand island at about 38km long and 11km wide. Relax on the beach, or maybe head off on a bush walk, keeping an eye out for resident kangaroos, koalas and kookaburras - the largest member of the kingfisher family.
Day 21 Brisbane - UK
We will transfer you to the airport today for your return flight to the UK.
Day 22 UK
You'll arrive back in the UK today.