Australia and New Zealand

Dates: March 26-April 17, 2024

We’ll have fun with sightseeing in Australia and New Zealand on this exciting vacation that covers New Zealand’s North and South Islands as well as Australia’s vibrant cities, golden beaches, and mystical Red Center. Then we tour the hottest--and coolest--sights of New Zealand with incredible sights throughout the land of the kiwi--and the home of the kangaroo.

Contact Lori Nietert or 319-393-1359 for a brochure on this once-in-a-lifetime tour!

Tuesday, March 26: Depart USA
Wednesday, March 27: Cross the International Dateline

Thursday, March 28: AUCKLAND, NEW ZEALAND
A MĀORI WELCOME. Welcome to Aotearoa, which in the Māori language means New Zealand for “land of the long white cloud.” Our day is free to relax and get ready for our adventure.

We have a free day for some exploring together or just relax. Tonight we will attend the evening’s welcome briefing and dinner. (D)

Saturday, March 30: AUCKLAND
THE CITY OF SAILS. We start with a sightseeing tour of Auckland. See bustling Queen Street, the city’s oldest park, Auckland Domain, and historic Parnell Village. In your free time, you can explore more in Auckland with a visit the impressive Auckland Museum or the trendy boutiques and cafes on Chancery and High Street. (B)

NEW ZEALAND TREASURES. Depart Auckland and travel through the green pastoral region of Waikato to the Famous Waitomo Glowworm Caves. We start with a guided tour through the limestone chambers, delicate formations, and passages of the cavern. Next, discover an ancient world of 30 million years in the making and marvel at Mother Nature’s light display as you glide silently through the starry wonderland of the Glowworm Grotto. See the lights of thousands of these tiny creatures as they radiate their light in a subterranean world. The glowworm is unique to New Zealand making this an absolute must-do. Continue over the Mamaku Ranges to Rotorua. We will journey back to a time of proud warriors as we tour the village and learn about ancient Māori traditions and customs followed by a delicious Hangi dinner. You’ll be entertained by master storytellers and singers, and you might even be asked to join in a Haka, the traditional war dance. (B,D)

Monday, April 1: ROTORUA
EARTHLY WONDERS. This morning, enjoy a guided tour and a special visit to the National Kiwi Hatchery. Only about 5% of all Kiwi birds hatched in the wild survive to adulthood making them endangered. Known as the national leader in hatching techniques and kiwi chick rearing, you’ll see each stage a kiwi chick goes through before being released into the national parks. Then, visit the Agrodome to learn more about one of the country’s major industries–sheep! Continue to Te Puia, Rotorua’s most prominent thermal area. The remainder of the day is at leisure with time to take an optional floatplane for flightseeing of this beautiful region, join a New Zealand family for dinner in their home, or indulge yourself at the Polynesian Spa. (B)

NIGHT LIGHTS. Fly to Christchurch, the largest city on New Zealand’s South Island, then travel south to magnificent Mount Cook National Park, named after New Zealand’s highest peak. Weather permitting, you may wish to join a stargazing program this evening as the Mount Cook region offers some of the darkest skies in the world – perfect for star viewing. (B,D)

ALPINE ADVENTURES. Start the day with a visit to the Sir Edmund Hillary Alpine Centre for unique insight into the history and culture of this region. Then, time to explore on your own with one of the many spectacular scenic walks or perhaps an optional scenic flight that lands on nearby Tasman Glacier. Continue to Queenstown, the “Adventure Capital of the World.

FJORDS, FOREST & FALLS. Today, travel into scenic Fiordland National Park. Boasting some of the most breathtaking scenery in the world, this region of New Zealand has been named as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Cruise on the fiord with sheer rock walls rising thousands of feet from the water’s great depths. Experience dense rainforest, towering mountains, glaciers and waterfalls. Have your cameras ready for marine life such as playful dolphins, seals, and penguins. It will be a day to remember as you experience New Zealand’s wild side at its absolute best! Late evening return to Queenstown. (B,L)

Friday, April 5: QUEENSTOWN
VINEYARDS & VIEWS. A full day at leisure for your own discoveries. Perhaps take an optional visit to a local vineyard, or maybe take a thrilling jet boat ride on the Dart River. This evening, take a scenic gondola ride to the top of Bob’s Peak where you’ll enjoy a delicious dinner and breathtaking views of Queenstown, Lake Wakatipu, and the Remarkable Mountains. (B,D)

ON TO AUSTRALIA. Board your flight across the Tasman Sea to Melbourne. Enjoy three nights in the city often referred to as Australia’s cultural capital. Melbourne is a blend of world-class restaurants, museums, shopping & interesting passageways. (B)

Sunday, April 7: MELBOURNE
G’DAY MELBOURNE! Today’s sightseeing tour includes landmarks such as Parliament House and the Shrine of Remembrance, a tribute to Australia’s war heroes. Visit beautiful Fitzroy Gardens, then drive past the Royal Botanic Gardens. You’ll soon discover the different architectural influences of this city as you see the Victorian Arts Centre and other buildings of significance. Following lunch, travel to the top of the Melbourne Skydeck, the southern hemisphere’s highest observation deck at 1,000 feet high for awe inspiring views. Enjoy free time the remainder of the day. Tonight’s optional excursion is a visit to see the world-famous Penguin Parade on Phillip Island. Experience the magic of little penguins returning home at sunset to one of the largest penguin colonies in Australia. Watch as these beloved fairy penguins waddle from the ocean to their burrows in the sand around you. (B,L)

Monday, April 8: MELBOURNE
COSMOPOLITAN COOL. Enjoy a full day at leisure to explore this multicultural and cosmopolitan city. Opt to enjoy dining at a local restaurant to immerse yourself in Melbourne’s passionate food and wine scene, or walk along Chapel and Brunswick Streets, famous for great shopping. Take a trip out of town to sample award-winning wines in the Yarra Valley, or drive along the spectacular Great Ocean Road to see the “Twelve Apostles.” (B)

INTO THE OUTBACK. Today, fly to the Outback where sightseeing includes a visit to the Royal Flying Doctor Service (RFDS) and the Old Telegraph Station. The RFDS was established in 1928 to bring much needed medical care to the residents of the remote Outback. Through the interactive displays you can experience what it’s like to fly with an RFDS pilot and the issues they have faced. Tonight, a unique Outback Barbecue features typical campfire fare and awe-inspiring Outback ambiance. A fun filled evening of entertainment and outback cuisine is in store for you this evening. Huddle around a cozy campfire, learn about bush damper cooking, enjoy music, local storytelling, and a boomerang demonstration. There’s even time for some star gazing to finish off this memorable evening. (B,D)

ROCK STARS. Travel by coach to Uluru. Upon arrival, visit a popular lookout to enjoy views of the magnificent Kata Tjuta (the Olgas), a geological spectacle of some 36 brilliant domes. This fascinating icon stands 1,141 feet high, however, most of its mass is below ground level. You’ll be overwhelmed by its incredible size, presence and inherent spirituality. As the sun sinks over the horizon and the evening sky brings out the many shades of color for which Uluru is famous, you’ll enjoy sparkling wine and nibbles and say goodbye to another wonderful day while witnessing the changing hues of light painting the rock. (B)

Thursday, April 11: ULURU–CAIRNS
SUNRISE & WHEELS UP. Your Outback adventure continues with free time this morning. Explore more with the extraordinary experience of an optional camel ride to watch the sunrise at Uluru. For an even more amazing view of Uluru, perhaps take an optional aircraft ride to see this scenic region. Later, fly to Cairns. (B)

BELOW THE SURFACE. Prepare for the experience of a lifetime when you board a catamaran and cruise to the Outer Great Barrier Reef, one of the Seven Natural Wonders of the World. Explore this underwater world that is a brilliant kaleidoscope of coral and sea life. The only living structure on Earth that can be seen from space, the Great Barrier Reef is a masterpiece of Mother Nature. Comprising of over 3,000 individual reefs and spanning over 135,135 miles, your day at the Reef will be one to remember. The balance of the day is yours to explore the Reef how you like. Choose to snorkel amid a dazzling array of fish and coral, take a semi-submersible watercraft tour, attend an informative presentation by a marine biologist, or just relax and enjoy the serenity of your surroundings. Return to Cairns late this afternoon with your evening free to enjoy. (B,L)

Saturday, April 13: CAIRNS
TICKET TO PARADISE. A full day at leisure. For a truly amazing experience consider an optional trip to Kuranda via the old scenic rail route. See magnificent scenery from the comfort of a restored, historic mountain train. For the return journey, you may choose to take the Skyrail Rainforest Cableway; or maybe spend the day in the magical Daintree Rainforest thought to be the planet’s oldest surviving tropical rainforest—or shopping, dining, and additional sightseeing. (B)

Sunday, April 14: CAIRNS–SYDNEY
KOALAS, CROCS & ROOS, OH MY! This morning, we visit the Koala Gardens where we will see Australia’s famous animals. See kangaroos, wombats, quokkas, wallabies, gliders and of course the famous salt-water crocodiles. You’ll also have a chance to see koalas doing what they do best – eating, sleeping, and looking adorable. Later, fly to Sydney, Australia’s largest city. Sydney is home to first-class restaurants, shopping, and top tourist attractions such as the Sydney Opera House and the Taronga Zoo. (B)

Monday, April 15: SYDNEY
SIGHTS & BITES. Explore one of the world’s most beautiful cities. Visit the Sydney Opera House and travel to Mrs Macquarie’s Chair in the city’s botanic gardens for sweeping views of the harbor. The Sydney Opera House is one of the most well-known buildings in the world and a UNESCO World Heritage Site. We’ll enjoy a private guided tour of the Opera House and see its interiors and theaters. Next, visit world-famous Bondi beach for an insider’s tour of Bondi Surf Bathers’ Life Saving Club with one of the lifesavers. Enjoy lunch at the historic North Bondi Returned Servicemen’s Leagues Club. Learn about the history of this place and the courageous “Rats of Tobruk” that stopped the Nazis in North Africa during WWII. Afterward, a cruise on Sydney Harbour Highlights some of the city’s best views (B,L)

Tuesday, April 16: SYDNEY
SPECTACULAR SYDNEY. Enjoy a full day at leisure for your own discoveries. You may choose to take an optional excursion to the Blue Mountains for a wilderness experience or to the Hunter Valley, one of Australia’s leading wine-growing regions. You can even climb to the top of Sydney’s Harbour Bridge. This evening, is a special farewell dinner at a restaurant overlooking Sydney Harbour. (B,D)

Wednesday, April 17: SYDNEY
UNTIL WE MEET AGAIN! Your tour ends with breakfast this morning. Transfer to the airport for our flight home. We will gain back the day that we missed arriving home the same day. (B)


  • Fully Escorted by Travel Leaders / Destinations Unlimited’s Lori Nietert
  • 20-night accommodations, taxes and luggage handling
  • Airport transfers
  • Luxury air-conditioned motorcoach transportation
  • Complimentary WiFi on motorcoach and in most hotels lobbies
  • Sightseeing and admissions as per the itinerary
  • 18 full breakfasts (B), 4 lunches (L) and 6 dinners (D) as specified

For more information about this tour and to request a full brochure – call 319-393-1359 or email:

Group Tour Disclosures