Explore Australia & New Zealand

National Geographic Journeys, Sydney to Queenstown

Image by G Adventures

Tour description provided by G Adventures

Why choose between Australia and New Zealand? Experience both on an extraordinary 23-day adventure. Discover iconic Sydney, fashionable Melbourne, and welcoming Auckland; stand in the presence of sacred Uluru; explore ancient rainforests; and get your fill of city life, mountainscapes, glaciers, cultural moments, deserts, hot springs, and photo ops.

What’s included

  • Your Journeys Highlight Moment: The Rocks Indigenous Dreaming and Welcome Tour, Sydney Your Journeys Highlight Moment: James Cook University Research Aquarium, Cairns Your Journeys Highlight Moment: Melbourne Foodie Walk, Melbourne Your Journeys Highlight Moment: Waiheke Island Wineries, Waiheke Island Your Journeys Highlight Moment: Meet a Maori Elder, Rotorua Your Journeys Highlight Moment: Resourceful Ōtautahi Walking Tour with Local Expert, Christchurch Your G for Good Moment: Resourceful Ōtautahi, Christchurch Your Discover Moment: Cairns
  • Sydney Harbour dinner cruise
  • Aboriginal walk through the Daintree Rainforest
  • Sunrise interpretive walk at Uluru
  • Melbourne orientation walk
  • Visit glowworm caves
  • Scenic TranzAlpine train
  • Queenstown gondola ride
  • Wilderness day cruise (winter) or overnight cruise (summer) in Fiordland National Park
  • Internal flights
  • All transport between destinations and to/from included activities

Highlights

  • Enjoy a sunset cruise on a private vessel
  • Take an interpretive walk with an aboriginal guide
  • Get an exclusive tour of a research aquarium
  • Witness thousands of glowworms lighting up the scenery

Itinerary

Sydney Arrive at any time.
Sydney Enjoy a traditional Indigenous welcome and a walkabout around The Rocks area and Sydney Harbour to learn the history of the Indigenous people’s saltwater heritage and their spiritual connection to the area. In the afternoon, board a private vessel and enjoy a relaxing sunset cruise with a barbecue dinner. While navigating the bays and coves, sit back and enjoy views of the Harbour Bridge and Opera House.
Sydney/Port Douglas Fly to Cairns then travel up the coastal road to Mossman Gorge. Take an interpretive walk with a local Indigenous guide and learn about traditional ways of life and survival techniques in the Daintree Rainforest. Continue on to the resort in Port Douglas, our home for the next two nights.
Port Douglas Enjoy the colourful resort town of Port Douglas. Take time to stroll the main streets and enjoy the beach.
Port Douglas/Cairns Return to the tropical city of Cairns. Take an exclusive behind the scenes tour of the James Cook University research aquarium, founded by marine biologist and National Geographic grant recipient Dr Jamie Seymour. Enjoy a private tour of the facility and get an up close look at some of these marvelous creatures. We'll also hear about the latest research from Jamie or one of his colleagues.
Cairns Enjoy a free day to relax at the beach. Opt to explore North Queensland’s tropical rainforests or get your adrenaline pumping with whitewater rafting or bungee jumping.
Cairns/Uluru Catch a flight to Uluru. Visit the cultural centre and learn about ancient beliefs and traditions portrayed in art, food, and music before witnessing an incredible sunset with a glass of bubbly.
Uluru Awake before sunrise to watch the colours change over Uluru. Continue on with a guided Mala Walk around the base of Uluru, gaining insight into its significance to the local Indigenous people. Later, take a walk in Kata Tjuta National Park and view the beautiful red-domed rock formations. The afternoon is at your leisure.
Uluru/Melbourne Enjoy another sunrise over Uluru before flying to Melbourne for the night.
Melbourne Enjoy a full free day in Melbourne. Opt to visit wineries, explore the Great Ocean Road, or discover hidden gems in the city's famous laneways.
Melbourne Go on a guided foodie walk through the laneways of Melbourne with a local author and culinary storyteller for a three-course progressive lunch. Later, enjoy free time to explore Melbourne.
Melbourne/Auckland Fly to Auckland, New Zealand and enjoy free time in the city.
Auckland Enjoy a morning orientation walk before catching a ferry to Waiheke Island. Visit two local wineries to learn more about New Zealand's burgeoning wine industry and the history of wine production in the country while sampling some of the local blends, of course.
Auckland/Rotorua Drive to Rotorua, stopping for an excursion at Waitomo Caves where you'll take a boat ride through the cave and see thousands of flickering glowworms lighting up the walls.
Rotorua Enjoy a free day in Rotorua which sits over an active geothermal zone with bubbling mud pits and multi-coloured pools. Opt to visit one of the geothermal sites, or go whitewater rafting. This evening visit Tamaki Maori Village and enjoy a private welcome and talk from a “Kaumātua” (an elder in Māori society). After, watch an extravagant performance about local myths and legends while dining on traditional Hangi cuisine.
Rotorua/Christchurch Enjoy free time this morning in Rotorua before catching a flight to Christchurch. This afternoon, meet with a local expert and explore lesser-known paths around Christchurch on a unique walking tour of the city.
Christchurch/Franz Josef Enjoy one of the world’s great scenic train trips on the TranzAlpine train, crossing the scenic Southern Alps to New Zealand's glacier region. Disembark and finish the journey over the highest pass in the Southern Alps in a private vehicle before transferring to a beautiful rainforest lodge, our home for two nights.
Franz Josef Enjoy free time to explore the area. Opt for a helicopter hike, ice walking on the glacier, or soaking in hot pools among stunning scenery.
Franz Josef/Queenstown Take a stunning scenic drive through the rugged rainforest along the west coast to Queenstown.
Queenstown/Fiordland National Park Embark on an amazing wilderness cruise through Fiordland National Park. Led by onboard naturalist guides, we have the chance to see dolphins, fur seals, birds, and penguins, with the option to kayak. Spend the night onboard in comfortable cabins (seasonal) with time to relax on deck and stargaze.
Fiordland National Park/Queenstown Enjoy early morning wildlife viewing along the fiord as we cruise back to port, then return to Queenstown.
Queenstown Enjoy a free day to explore on your own, visit a winery, or cruise on a historic steamship. Feeling a bit more adventurous? Opt to go bungee jumping, jet boating, skydiving, paragliding, or mountain biking. This evening enjoy a gondola ride with spectacular views of the city and surrounding landscape.
Queenstown Depart at any time.
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