Remarkable experiences. extraordinary value.

Journey to the Australian Outback and New Zealand

23-Days including 8 escorted tours featuring Ayers Rock and the Great Barrier Reef plus a 13-day cruise featuring Sydney, featuring Milford Sound and Auckland.

Includes Airfare, Hotel, Tours, Transfers, Baggage Handling, and more!

Departs October 21, 2017

About This Journey

Australia and New Zealand are a world away—but they possess a powerful lure to travelers of all types. From the Great Barrier Reef to the rugged Australian Outback, and from the sheep-dotted New Zealand plains to the cliff-lined fjords, the land Down Under features a nonstop lineup of dramatic landscapes and surprisingly sophisticated cities. On this Enrichment Journey you will experience the incredible culture, famous icons and pristine natural environments of these fascinating destinations. Visit rainforests and deserts and marvel at the Opera House in the heart of cosmopolitan Sydney. Stand in awe of Uluru’s monolith, Ayers Rock, in Australia’s ‘red center’ during sunset. Sit under a starlit sky and listen to aboriginal stories of the outback. Bask in the awe-inspiring beauty of New Zealand’s Milford Sound, and explore the bubbling mud pools of Rotorua. On this remarkable journey you will visit Australia by land and then New Zealand by sea aboard Celebrity Solstice. You will spend eight days exploring Australia and then board a 13-day cruise between Sydney and Auckland. Then enjoy an unforgettable evening in Auckland as our guest before returning home knowing that few travelers get to visit the South Pacific as affordably and comprehensively as you have on this Enrichment Journey.
Visits: Sydney, Ayers Rock, Cairns, Port Douglas and Melbourne, Australia; Milford Sound, Doubtful Sound, Dusky Sound, Dunedin, Akaroa, Wellington, Tauranga, Bay of Islands and Auckland, New Zealand

Journey to the Australian Outback and New Zealand

Itinerary

Aboard Celebrity Solstice

Day Port Arrival Departure
1 Depart USA
2 Cross International Dateline
3 Sydney, Australia
4 Sydney, Australia
5 Transfer to Ayers Rock
6 Ayers Rock, Australia
7 Transfer to Cairns and Port Douglas
8 Port Douglas, Australia
9 Port Douglas, Australia
10 Transfer to Sydney – Board Ship 6:30 PM
11 At Sea
12 Melbourne, Australia 8:00 AM 6:00 PM
13 At Sea
14 At Sea
15 Milford Sound, New Zealand 8:00 AM 9:00 AM
15 Doubtful Sound, New Zealand 1:00 PM 2:00 PM
15 Dusky Sound, New Zealand 4:00 PM  5:30 PM
16 Dunedin, New Zealand 9:00 AM 7:00 PM
17 Akaroa, New Zealand 8:00 AM 6:00 PM
18 Wellington, New Zealand 8:00 AM 6:00 PM
19 At Sea
20 Tauranga, New Zealand 8:00 AM 6:00 PM
21 Bay of Islands, New Zealand 7:00 AM 6:00 PM
22 Auckland, New Zealand – Transfer to Hotel 6:00 AM
23 Return to USA
 Visits: Sydney, A 
 

Land Package Highlights

DAY 3 : Arrival in Sydney, Australia

After arrival in in Sydney, clear customs and immigration. Your guide will welcome you to Sydney. Bursting with character, Sydney is a vibrant city catering to all your desires whether you seek exhilaration, exploration or relaxation. Discover Sydney’s unique blend of dining, shopping and recreation options in one of the world’s most attractive city environments. Sydney’s sparkling harbor is the jewel in the city’s crown. It’s flanked by golden beaches and bush land, and is home to one of the most famous bridges in the world.

DAY 4 : Tour Sydney and Bondi Beach

Enjoy a highlights tour capturing the history of Sydney, stunning architecture, spectacular harbour views and the world famous Bondi Beach. Pass through the historical Rocks area and Circular Quay as you learn about the history and significance of the area. View the Opera House and the Harbour Bridge from Mrs Macquarie‟s Chair, a chair specially designed for the governor‟s wife to look out over the harbour. Travel through Chinatown, Darling Harbour, and the nightlife district of Kings Cross. Travel via Watson Bay and stop at “The Gap”, for fantastic views and photo opportunities before arriving at famous Bondi Beach. Return to the city, passing the exclusive suburbs of Double Bay & Rose Bay.

DAY 5 : Sydney to Ayers Rock

After breakfast, you will check-out of the hotel and proceed to the airport for your flight to Ayers Rock.  Ayers Rock or Uluru, is one of Australia’s most identifiable icons. The large sandstone rock formation lies in the Uluru Kata Tjuta National Park approximately 450 km southwest from Alice Springs. The Ayers Rock site is considered sacred to the local Aborigines. The rock’s color changes spectacularly with the sunset, gradually turning to a deeper shade of red before fading into grey and blending into the night. The reverse can be witnessed as dawn approaches.

To the west of Ayers Rock and standing over 500 metres above the plain, are the gigantic domes of Kata Tjuta / Mt. Olga, the traditional name meaning many heads. There are in fact thirty-six domes. Take a walk along the path of the natural creek bed between the red walls of Olga Gorge. In the afternoon, travel to the western section of Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park to the immense 36 rock domes of Kata Tjuta. Take a walk into Olga Gorge. Hear of the domes’ formation, once thought to have been a single rock, many times the size of Uluru (Ayers Rock). Learn of the flora and fauna of the region – some of the plants you will see are so rare that they are only found in and around these rocky formations.

Return to a special vantage point from which to view Uluru at sunset. Witness a display of colours from gentle, dusky blues and purples to fierce oranges and reds, glowing with the last remnants of the day while enjoying a beverage and canapé at sunset.

DAY 6 : Ayers Rock: Rise early to watch the day’s first light illuminate Uluru in a fantastic array of ever changing colors. On the tour around the base of the rock, see ancient rock-paintings, water holes and hear stories of Aboriginal legends. Travel to the Cultural Centre and Maruku Arts and Craft Coop. to learn more of this ancient culture. The rest of the day at leisure at your hotel, with activities including indigenous art markets, guided garden walks, self-guided garden walks, bush yarns, cultural dance workshop, spear & boomerang throwing, wakagetti cultural dancers, and interactive didgeridoo playing . Tonight enjoy the “Sounds of Silence” experience where you can dine under the canopy of the desert night, while your very own storyteller shares tales as told in the stars while dining under the sparkling outback sky. Your Sounds of Silence experience begins with canapés and chilled sparkling wine served on a viewing platform overlooking the Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park. As the sun sets and darkness falls, listen to the sound of a didgeridoo and join your table for an unforgettable dining experience and an introduction to Aboriginal culture with a traditional dance performance under the outback sky. The attentive staff will keep your glass full with a quality selection of Australian wine and beer while first course is served. As the night sky twinkles to life, help yourself to a bush tucker inspired buffet that incorporates native bush ingredients such as crocodile, kangaroo, barramundi and quandong. Then settle back and listen to the resident star talker decode the southern night sky. Locate the Southern Cross, the signs of the zodiac, the Milky Way, as well as planets and galaxies that are visible due to the exceptional clarity of the atmosphere. After dinner, enjoy dessert with a glass of port, tea or coffee.

DAY 7 : Transfer to Port Douglas via Cairns

Cairns is the gateway to lush, tropical rainforest, cozy villages and the Great Barrier Reef. You will be transferred from Cairns to Port Douglas. Nestled beside the sparkling waters of Dickson Inlet and the rolling waves of the Coral Sea, Port Douglas has developed into one of Tropical North Queensland’s most sophisticated, stylish seaside villages while still retaining a relaxed ambience. Once a quiet fishing village, it is now a base for reef trips and rainforest tours. Spend an evening at leisure strolling to the local shops or dining. Your home for the next several nights is the Sheraton Port Douglas, surrounded by five acres of swimmable saltwater lagoons.

DAY 8 : Port Douglas and Rainforest

The original Kuranda Scenic Railway offers the old world charm of travelling in authentic timber carriages, gently meandering past breathtakingly beautiful scenery. A spectacular journey comprising unsurpassed views of dense rainforest, steep ravines and picturesque waterfalls within the world heritage listed Barron Gorge National Park. Kuranda Scenic Railway’s Heritage Class comprises 10-12 authentic red wooden carriages. Carriage vintages range from 1909–1949 and therefore capacity of each carriage can vary. The seating is a bench style each facing the open windows providing unlimited views. Kuranda is the aboriginal word for ‘village in the rainforest.’ Over the years Kuranda has taken on a distinctive character as a popular visitor destination in its own right. Kuranda is famous for having the biggest and most frequent art and craft markets in Tropical North Queensland, with exotically handcrafted goods and Aboriginal artifacts. Kuranda also boasts Australia’s biggest butterfly display which is home to exotic species such as the brilliant blue Ulysses and the Red Lace Wings butterfly that flash their presence as smaller and camouflaged species feed on the tropical flowers and trees of their expansive sanctuary. Our visit to the rainforest includes Skyrail Rainforest Cableway, and is a unique rainforest experience taking you on an unforgettable journey over Australia’s World Heritage listed Tropical Rainforest and deep into the forest. Spanning 7.5kms, Skyrail has comfortable six person gondola cabins which glide just metres above the canopy providing uninterrupted views of the rainforest, Cairns’ tropical region, the Coral Sea and the lush Cairns Highlands. Your adventure includes time at two mid-stations where you can learn more about this fascinating environment from the forest floor.

DAY 9 : Port Douglas and Great Barrier Reef

For an experience of a lifetime, explore the Great Barrier Reef aboard Quicksilver. A friendly and knowledgeable crew will take you to a reef at the very edge of Australia’s Continental Shelf, to an underwater world that is a dazzling kaleidoscope of color and brilliance. Quicksilver takes you to Agincourt Reef, a magnificent ribbon reef where you can experience first-hand the magic that is the Great Barrier Reef. With Quicksilver you can choose to dive, snorkel, or stay dry and explore the stunning reef from the comfort of a Quicksilver semi-sub, just one meter underwater. Watch the fish feeding from Quicksilver’s unique underwater viewing platform and underwater observatory. You’ll bring home a lifetime of memories from this living natural wonder. The cruise includes morning tea and lunch.

Day 10 : Transfer to Ship in Sydney

Day 11 – 21 : Cruising aboard Celebrity Solstice

Day 22  : Arrive Auckland, New Zealand

Auckland, also known as the city of sails, is situated between two enormous harbors and dotted with 48 extinct volcanic cones. New Zealand’s largest city with a population of over 1.3 million people – is home to one third of New Zealanders. The city’s mix of urban sophistication and coastal setting has inspired a lifestyle that regularly ranks in the world’s top 10. Auckland is home to the Sky Tower which at 328m is the tallest structure in the southern hemisphere. The Sky Tower’s three observation levels offer 360-degree views of Auckland. The iconic harbor bridge, opened in 1959, provides other adventures. Visitors can climb over, under and jump from the spectacular bridge that dominates Auckland’s inner harbor. Enjoy a brief city tour while being transferred to the Amora Hotel Auckland, ideally positioned amongst a magnificent park in central Auckland. With its central location close to the main business district the hotel is also ideally located within strolling distance to the major shopping and entertainment areas. You will tour the Auckland War Memorial Museum, both a museum and a site of commemoration for New Zealanders lost at war. The Museum houses two halls of memory within which the names of all those killed in major conflicts of the 20th Century are recorded and remembered. The Cenotaph and consecrated ground in front of the Museum are a touchstone of remembrance every Anzac Day (25 April). The War Memorials and galleries are located on the top floor. Enjoy a Maori cultural performance. This evening your trip ends  with a Farewell Dinner at the Orbit Revolving Restaurant – situated at the top of the Sky Tower, 190 meters off the ground. The dining room rotates once every hour, providing a truly unique experience and amazing 360-degree views of Auckland City. High flying architect Andrew Lister set his sights at a dizzying level with his up-to-the-minute Orbit restaurant design. Combining stylish décor, delicious à la carte menu and 360 degrees, Orbit stands out as Auckland’s top dining experience.

Day 23  : Transfer to Airport and return to USA

Port Highlights

Sydney, Australia: As your ship passes Harbour Heads, you are presented with the shimmering skyline of Sydney – hailed by many seafarers as “the most beautiful harbor in the world.” Two prominent landmarks, Harbour Bridge and the sail-like curves of the Sydney Opera House, grace the backdrop of this picturesque harbor. There is a wealth of adventure waiting in Sydney – from its cosmopolitan city center to miles of beautiful beaches and the Blue Mountains. Australia’s oldest and largest city was born in 1788 with the arrival of the “First Fleet” transporting 760 British convicts. Today, Sydney is the largest port in the South Pacific and is often voted the most popular destination in the South Pacific.

Melbourne, Australia (2016 and 2017 dates only): Victoria may be Australia’s smallest continental state, but Melbourne, its capital, is big on everything. With a population of 2.7 million people living in 59 separately named communities within 715 square miles, Melbourne is a sprawling city offering culture, art, fashion and friendly, sports-minded Australians. It is also an easy city to explore. At the heart of the city is the Golden Mile, the city’s governmental and commercial center, home to hotels, shops, restaurants and theaters. Originally part of New South Wales, Victoria became a colony in its own right in 1851. The discovery of gold propelled Melbourne’s growth to prominence and prosperity. (Replaces the port of Hobart, Tasmania. Only available on 2016 departure.)

Milford Sound, New Zealand: Described by Rudyard Kipling as the ‘eighth wonder of the world’, Milford Sound was carved by glaciers during the ice ages. Milford Sound is breathtaking in any weather. The fiord’s cliffs rise vertically from the dark waters, mountain peaks scrape the sky and waterfalls cascade downwards, some as high as 1000 metres. When it rains in Milford Sound, and it often does, those waterfalls multiply with magnificent effect. Despite being one of the most accessible fiords, Milford Sound remains quiet and still, bounded by steep cliffs and dense rainforest. Rain or shine, Milford Sound continues to captivate even the most experienced traveller. At the pinnacle of Milford Sound is the magnetising Mitre Peak – standing a proud 1,692 metres above sea level, it is certainly an impressive sight to behold. Milford Sound is by far the best known of all of the fiords in New Zealand, and the only one that can be accessed by road. It is approximately 16km from the head of the fiord to the open sea, which means visitors can comfortably travel the length of the fiord to open ocean and return. Maori are believed to have discovered Milford Sound more than 1,000 years ago, returning seasonally to the fiord, collecting the much prized pounamu (greenstone). These treks from the east used traditional pathways across passes such as MacKinnon Pass on the Milford Track. The Maori named the sound Piopiotahi after the thrush-like piopio bird, which is now extinct. In 1912 John Grono was the first European settler to land in the sound. He named Milford Sound after Milford Haven in Wales.

Doubtful Sound, New Zealand: Sometimes called ‘the Sound of Silence’, there is a cloistered serenity within Doubtful Sound that contrasts with Milford Sound. The fiord is rich in flora and fauna, New Zealand Fur Seals and Fiordland Crested Penguins can be seen on many of the small islets at the entrance of the fiord. At 421 metres deep, Doubtful is the deepest of the fiords and is long and winding with three distinct ‘arms’ and several outstanding waterfalls in the area from Deep Cove to the open ocean, a distance of around 40.4 kilometres.

Dusky Sound, New Zealand: One of the most complex fjords on New Zealand’s southern coast, Dusky Sound is a place of serene beauty, accessible today only by sea or air. European explorers first spotted this treasure when Captain Cook and his crew happened upon its opening in the late eighteenth century. Although they returned to explore its waters months later, Cook and his crew named it Dusky Sound for the time of night when they first found it. A breeding site for Fiordland Penguins, Dusky Sound is an Important Bird Area, with a wealth of birdlife to be found here. This remote, untouched region is also home to a wide range of sea life.Seals and dolphins are often sighted in the sound’s waters and occasionally visited by whales. The Seaforth River is the largest of many small rivers and creeks which flow into the sound.

Dunedin, New Zealand: Perched on the hills above one of New Zealand’s loveliest harbors, Dunedin is a Kiwi city with a Scottish heart. Hailed as the “Edinburgh of New Zealand,” Dunedin is proud of its heritage. A statue of famed Scottish poet Robert Burns graces downtown, and the presence of New Zealand’s only kilt maker and whisky distillery – as well as many bagpipe bands – keep Dunedin’s ties to Scotland alive. The city also boasts a distinguished architectural and cultural history, a legacy of New Zealand’s 1860s gold rush.

Akaroa, New Zealand: On the eastern shores of New Zealand’s South Island, Akaroa is a popular tourist destination with a distinctly French flair, its history steeped in legend. It lies on the volcanic Banks Peninsula, which the Maori believe was formed when a hero named Maui piled mountains upon a giant who threatened to eat his children. The same peninsula was purchased from the local Maori by a French whaler around 1838, and was later settled by both the French and the British, who had just signed the Treaty of Waitangi ensuring New Zealand’s existence as a British colony. With French-named streets leading to restaurants serving French cuisine and colonial architecture all around, Akaroa’s heritage as the only French-founded community in New Zealand is unmistakable. Akaroa harbour is home to a diverse array of marine life, including rare Hector’s dolphins, and visitors are lured by the area’s secluded beaches and quaint boutiques.

Wellington, New Zealand (2016 and 2017 dates only): New Zealand’s capital offers stunning views of forested peninsulas, dramatic cliff-side homes and fine Victorian buildings. Settled in 1840 by the London-based New Zealand Company, “wonderful, windy Wellington” is frequently buffeted by bracing winds funneling through Cook Strait. The sophisticated metropolis boasts museums, winding streets and even a cable car. No wonder many travelers compare it to San Francisco. Despite its steep hills, the city can be easily explored on foot. Kelburn Cable Car, stairways and footpaths climb the slopes from the city center.

Tauranga, New Zealand: New Zealand’s natural bounty is always on display at the Bay of Plenty. It was Captain James Cook who in 1769 aptly named this bay after he was able to replenish his ship’s provisions, thanks to the prosperous Maori villages of the region. Tauranga, the chief city, is a bustling port, an agricultural and timber center and a popular seaside resort. Tauranga is also the gateway to Rotorua – a geothermal wonderland that is the heart of Maori culture. A 90-minute drive from Tauranga, Rotorua is New Zealand’s primary tourist attraction.

Bay of Islands, New Zealand: The Bay of Islands offers more than broad vistas of sea and sky, more than beaches, boating, and fabulous water sports. The Bay is the birthplace of modern New Zealand. Here the Treaty of Waitangi was signed, establishing British rule and granting the native inhabitants equal status. Rich in legend and mystery, the Bay of Islands has age-old ties to the Maori and to whalers, missionaries and New Zealand’s early settlers. The Bay of Islands has lured explorers for countless centuries. The Maori say that Kupe, the great Polynesian adventurer, came here in the 10th century. Captain Cook anchored offshore in 1769, followed by assorted brigands, traders, colonists and missionaries.

Auckland, New Zealand: Straddling a narrow isthmus created by 60 different volcanoes, New Zealand’s former capital boasts scenic beauty, historical interest and a cosmopolitan collection of shops, restaurants, museums, galleries and gardens. Rangitoto, Auckland’s largest and youngest volcano, sits in majestic splendor just offshore. Mt. Eden and One Tree Hill, once home to Maori earthworks, overlook the city. One of New Zealand’s fine wine districts lies to the north of Auckland. Auckland served as New Zealand’s capital from 1841 until 1865, when the seat of government moved to Wellington.

Fjordland National Park, New Zealand: New Zealand’s largest national park was formed millennia ago by massive glacial flows that carved deep fiords into the coast of New Zealand’s South Island. At the heart of Fiordland National Park lies Milford Sound. Lined by cliffs that soar nearly a mile above its surface, Milford Sound cuts into the heart of the Southern Alps. Rainforest clings to the cliffs and graceful waterfalls plummet into the void. Mile-high Mitre Peak dominates the upper reaches of the sound. The town of Te Anau in Fiordland National Park is also your gateway to the South Island’s other natural wonders including Lake Wakatipu, the resort of Queenstown and Mt. Cook National Park.

Journey to the Australian Outback and New Zealand

Included Features

  • Included round-trip airfare, transfers and baggage handling
  • Seven nights at four star hotels in Sydney, Ayers Rock, and Port Douglas (Grace Hotel in Sydney, Sails in the Desert in Ayers Rock, Sheraton Mirage in Port Douglas, or similar)
  • One Night at four-star Amora Hotel Auckland (or similar)
  • All hotels are centrally located
  • Daily breakfast during hotel stay
  • Local tour hosts
  • Eight included and fully escorted tours in Australia
  • 12-night cruise aboard Celebrity Solstice
  • Choose 2 of the following: Classic Beverage Package, Pre-paid Gratuities, Unlimited Internet, $300 Onboard Credit
  • At least $75 onboard credit

Journey to the Australian Outback and New Zealand

What to Expect on Your Trip

Pacing

During your 23-day excursion, you will explore Australia by land. There will be airplane transfers between each destination. Then the group will board the ship for a 12-night cruise through New Zealand and its scenic sounds and fjords. Optional shore excursions will allow for cultural immersion, exotic meals and numerous activities.

Physical Activity

The land portion of the trip should be considered moderately active, involving walking to several historical sites. Walking on different types of land, roads and landmarks will be part of the trip. Enrichment Journeys will do everything in our power to ensure comfort through our third-party providers, including air-conditioned buses and comfortable accommodations when applicable. For the cruise section of the trip, passengers will board and leave the ship up stairways and gangways, and you may have to walk a moderate distance to transfer train, bus and car stations. Time spent on the road and traveling can be long, so you will need to be prepared for stretches of down time in between destinations.

Cultural Focus

One of the most popular destinations on the planet, Australia and New Zealand beckons to travelers. Australia is unique in its contrasting landscapes of desert, white sand beaches, and rainforests. Cosmopolitan Sydney with its man-made wonders like the Sydney Opera House and Harbor Bridge will contrast with Uluru’s natural immensity and the beauty of the Great Barrier Reef. A taste of aboriginal history will captivate travelers as they witness a culture more than 50,000 years old.

Rivaling Australia’s natural beauty, New Zealand has been the backdrop for movies like the Lord of the Rings and the Hobit, being deemed “The real middle earth,” for its unique and diverse geography. From jagged mountains, sheep-dotted hills, striking fjords, pristine beaches, tranquil lakes and active volcanoes, New Zealand is characterized not only by its diverse beauty, but the unique wildlife it serves as home to as well. Thrilling adventure awaits in Queenstown, as jet-boating, bungy jumping, and other adrenaline filled activities welcome visitors as a different way to explore and see the natural beauty around them. Auckland welcomes lovers of boating and the sea and Rotorua’s geothermal wonders will enthrall nature enthusiasts.

Enrichment Journeys encourages an open mind when in unique situations and meeting people abroad. Sometimes the attractions, beaches and the cities themselves can be crowded, so we will proceed with caution.

Unique Factors

If you have special needs or physical limitations, you will need to check in with your personal vacation manager before booking the trip. The weather can vary between destinations, so pack accordingly with summer gear, such as more breathable, cotton items. Sturdy shoes will be needed during city and cliff walks.

Recommended Reading List 

Looking to learn more about the cultures, lifestyle and fun found in foreign destinations you are about to visit? We recommend these following books:

Fiction/Personal Accounts

Beneath the Southern Cross,  Judy Nunn

The Secret River, Kate Grenville

Eucalyptus, Murray Bail

A Biography of a Nation, Phillip Knightley

Green Mountains,  Bernard O’Reilly

The Bone People, Keri Hulme

The 1 Thing: A Small Epic Journey Down New Zealand’s Mother Road, Bob Moore

Travel Guides/ Blogs

www.sydney-travel-guide.org/

http://www.fodors.com/world/australia-and-the-pacific/australia/new-south-wales/sydney/

http://destination-nz.com/

http://www.nomadicmatt.com/travel-guides/new-zealand-travel-tips/

http://www.nomadicmatt.com/travel-guides/australia-travel-tips/

http://www.backpackingmatt.com/

Videos/Movies

Breaker Morant (movie)

The Castle (movie)

Jindabyne (movie)

Sydney, Australia ►Vacation Travel Guide (Sydney Travel Guide) (video)

Transportation

Enrichment Journeys is committed to providing remarkable experiences at extraordinary value. As a result, airlines and routes are selected to maximize that value and may involve multiple stops and extended layovers versus non-stop or direct flights. Passengers wishing to utilize specific carriers, or direct, or non-stop, or Business Class flights, or to extend their time in any of our beginning or ending destination cities may do so by contacting their Travel Agent or Enrichment Journeys directly. We are pleased to provide Custom Air arrangements with a charge of $50.00 per person plus any additional air costs. The initial charge of $50.00 will be applied to the deviation cost.

Routing Transportation Approximate Travel Time
Los Angeles – Sydney Airplane 15 Hours
Sydney – Ayers Rock Airplane 3.5 Hours
Ayers Rock – Cairns Airplane 2.5 Hours
Cairns – Sydney Airplane 3 Hours
Auckland – Los Angeles Airplane 19 Hours (with connections)

Journey to the Australian Outback and New Zealand

Special Offers

Celebrity’s go! Big Better Best – Enhance your cruise with onboard amenities
(Applicable to bookings with 2 guests per stateroom and in an Oceanview or higher)

Applicable Bookings PICK 2:

  • Classic Beverage Package for two guests
  • Pre-paid Gratuities for two guests
  • Unlimited internet for two guests
  • $300 Onboard Credit per stateroom

Interested in more? You can upgrade to a Suite and receive all 4 extras!
Guests in the same staterooms must select the same option(s). Click here to view Celebrity Terms and Conditions ». NOTE: Offer expires 10/2/17. Additional terms and conditions apply, call for more information.

Journey to the Australian Outback and New Zealand

Dates & Prices

Aboard Celebrity Solstice

10/21/2017 Retail Value EJ Price Savings Per Person Single Rates
12 (Inside) SOLD OUT SOLD OUT SOLD OUT SOLD OUT
8 (Oceanview) SOLD OUT SOLD OUT SOLD OUT SOLD OUT
2B (Veranda) SOLD OUT SOLD OUT SOLD OUT SOLD OUT
C3 (Concierge) SOLD OUT SOLD OUT SOLD OUT SOLD OUT
Air Add-Ons
City Add-On City Add-On City Add-On
Atlanta $450 Houston Intercontinental $450 Philadelphia $500
Boston $500 John F. Kennedy $500 Phoenix $400
Denver $400 Los Angeles $0 San Diego $300
Dallas-Ft. Worth $400 Orlando $500 Seattle $300
Newark $500 Miami $450 San Francisco $200
Washington – Dulles $500 Chicago $400 Tampa $500
– Business Class Air Available on Request
– Additional Gateways Available on Request
– Air Add-On Rates are subject to change without notice. While we try to include the most common airports by default, we have many clients coming from different parts of the country. If you desire air from an unlisted airport, you must first reserve your Enrichment Journey with one of the listed airports as your default gateway and then ask, or have your Travel Agent ask, Enrichment Journeys to provide a quote for your preferred gateway.

All prices on our website and e-Journey Travel Guide are subject to change without notice. While we make every effort to provide you the most accurate and up-to-date information, occasionally, a trip or pricing category may be misprinted or unavailable at the time of booking. In the event of an incorrect price due to typographical, photographic, or technical error, or error in pricing information received from our suppliers, we retain the right to correct the price and to refuse or cancel any bookings placed at the incorrect price. In addition, all offers, prices, and conditions of sale may be subject to change without notice including tours, included features, highlights, minimum or maximum stays, itinerary, times in port, and/or other conditions/restrictions.

Journey to the Australian Outback and New Zealand

The following hotel list is preliminary and subject to change. Although we contract for hotels a year or more in advance, unforeseen circumstances do occasionally require a change of hotel. Should it be necessary to change a hotel, one of equal quality or value will be substituted and you will receive confirmed hotel information with your final itinerary. Please note that hotel ratings are based on TripAdvisor ratings and are subject to change.

Accommodations
Grace Hotel

77 York Street, Sydney, NSW 2000, Australia.

Telephone: [612] 9272 6888

grace@gracehotel.com.au

Built by Grace Bros. in the 1920s as a showpiece of their successful retail business; The Grace Hotel has been beautifully restored to its former glory, making it one of Sydney’s most prominent historical landmarks, a fine example of Neo-Gothic architecture with contrasting Art-Deco interior.

Located in the heart of Sydney, this heritage-listed hotel offers warm and personal service with the luxury of a 4 1/2 star hotel exuding a unique blend of old world charm with modern comfort to meet the needs of guests today.

 

Sails in the Desert Ayers Rock Resort

Yulara Drive | Ayers Rock Resort, Yulara, Northern Territory 0872, Australia

Telephone: 61 (0)2 8296 8010

In the heart of Australia’s Red Centre, Sails in the Desert hotel beautifully contrasts Uluru’s raw natural beauty with a decidedly luxurious outback holiday experience.

Soaring white sails crown Ayers Rock Resort’s Sails in the Desert hotel, shading 228 luxury five star rooms and suites.

In a destination where one of the world’s oldest cultures still thrives, the mystery, colour and wisdom of the local Anangu people is interwoven into every facet of Sails in the Desert’s modern design. More than luxury accommodation, Sails in the Desert hotel is a destination of exploration and indulgence.

 

 

Sheraton Mirage

Port Douglas Road, · Port Douglas, QLD 4877 · Australia

Telephone: (61) (7) 4099 5888

Sheraton Mirage Port Douglas Resort is perfectly poised on Four Mile Beach and nestled within 130 hectares of lush tropical gardens between the Great Barrier Reef and Daintree Rainforest and is an oasis of luxury with its location only matched by the standard of indulgence, service and style the Resort is renowned for.

 

 

 

Amora Hotel Auckland

100 Greys Ave, Auckland 1010, New Zealand

Telephone: (09) 375 1800

An oasis in the calm of central Auckland, Amora Hotel Auckland is a home away from home. Centrally located amongst splendid park surroundings, the Amora Hotel Auckland is ideally positioned within walking distance to the major shopping and entertainment areas with easy access to and from the motorways.

 

 

 

Celebrity Solstice

Cruise Line: Celebrity

Since its inception in 1989, Celebrity has held true to its original commitment of taking the very best aspects of classic, elegant cruising and updating them to reflect current lifestyles. In 1997, they merged with Royal Caribbean International to form Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd. What sets Celebrity apart from other vacation choices today is the cruise line’s passionate dedication to providing guests with a cruise experience that embodies modern luxury. This has become the definition of Celebrity Cruises, and has set the worldwide standard for today’s expression of what first made cruising famous — high quality, superior design, spacious accommodations, grand style, attentive service and exceptional cuisine. Celebrity Cruises’ iconic “”X” is the mark of modern luxury, with its cool, contemporary design and warm spaces; dining experiences where the design of the venues is as important as the cuisine; and the amazing service that only Celebrity can provide, all providing an unmatchable vacation experience.

Ship: Celebrity Solstice

Celebrity Solstice® is one of our more decorated ships at sea. So it’s no wonder that it’s full of “firsts.” Like the first Lawn Club at sea. The first Hot Glass Show℠. The first cruise line to have 5 women, also known as “the Leading Ladies℠” redesign, and redecorate the staterooms. Some other things that set the Celebrity Solstice cruise ship apart are its specialty restaurants. Our passion for outstanding cuisine has taken the restaurants, the food and the overall dining experience to a whole new level in the cruising world. But staterooms and specialty restaurants are only part of this ship’s charm. Celebrity Solstice also has the Canyon Ranch SpaClub® and fitness center, where you can pamper yourself with spa treatments or push yourself in a workout with one of our trainers. If only life on land was as good as life on Celebrity Solstice.

Journey to the Australian Outback and New Zealand

Preparing for Your Trip

Money Matters

How you handle your currency and financials is your choice while on the trip. Some people prefer to exchange all their money in advance, while others will rely solely on credit cards. Consider calling your bank ahead of time to have them aware of your international travel, especially when using cards or withdrawing money.

ATM Machines

These are often readily available, especially in major cities. Some will charge fees on top of what your hometown bank may charge for using ATMs abroad. Look for well-marked machines that have the Visa or MasterCard symbols.

Foreign Banks

Currency can be exchanged at most banks when in need of cash. Ask a local host or tour manager if there is a nearby currency converter, or bank, that is open.

Credit Cards

Cards are now widely accepted all over the world, especially major brand names. Call your card ahead of time to find out its specific limitations and benefits overseas.

Incidentals

Do be aware that some additional charges for mini-bars, laundry and room service will not be included in the tour package. Plan accordingly for these extra charges.

Packing Guidelines

Pack as simply as possible for easy transfers and customs screenings. Ask your domestic carrier for their rules and regulations regarding baggage allowance. Should you exceed the baggage allowance, you will be charged additional fees. All bags will be screened during transfer before flights and boarding the cruise ship.

Luggage Screening Process

To easily pass through security screenings, have liquids either in small containers and bagged, or in checked luggage. All valuables necessary for the trip should be on your person at all times, if possible. This includes medications and documentation. We recommend one main bag and a carry-on, per airline weight and size restrictions.

Labeling

Have your bags labeled with name and address clearly marked. Add something recognizable in case bags are misplaced. Also mark bags with “Enrichment Journeys” for fluidity.

Carry-on items

In many countries, including the US, large liquid containers are not allowed in carry-ons. On the way back into the states, food or agriculture items are prohibited. If you are questioning a certain item, visit www.tsa.gov for a list of items that cannot be packed.

What to pack

Basics and layers are key to a comfortable Journey. There are always unusual variables as well, so make sure you have one sturdy jacket and an outfit for a formal occasion too, just in case.

Here are a few key items to take on your trip:

  • Raincoat/poncho
  • Hooded jacket/fleece pullover
  • Pants with pockets
  • Skirt with pockets
  • Hat with visor & sunscreen/bug spray
  • Warm socks
  • Practical shoes for walking/easy hiking
  • Extra pair of prescription sunglasses and/or glasses (if needed)

Cameras

Have back-ups for everything to avoid disappointment. Charge batteries in advance and bring extra film or digital memory cards. If bringing a high-end camera, consider investing in insurance to protect your asset.

Cell phones

Some cell phones will work overseas, but incur additional charges for the use. Choose whether you would like to add an international plan by calling you carrier, or consider purchasing a pay-as-you-go phone overseas. However, many smartphones and tablets can pick up wireless internet for free.

Your Health and Comfort

Protecting the Value of Your Travel Investment

Enrichment Journeys offers a comprehensive travel insurance package you can purchase alongside your trip. It eases the mind and lets you cancel your trip beforehand up to the departure date with a full refund – that means 100% coverage at anytime. This covers a wide variety of incidents, including travel delay, emergency medical services, baggage delay and medical consultations abroad. You will also receive a pre-existing medical conditions waiver if travel insurance is purchased within 14 days of your initial deposit.
For a full list of coverage provided, visit the FAQ section of the website.

Medical Issues and Handicaps

As with any extensive trip abroad, our excursions will require some physical capabilities, including transfers from cruise ships, walking on uneven streets and navigating through busy cities with guides. Although we encourage all types of travelers to join us, we do ask you are aware of your own physical limitations. Unfortunately, we cannot provide individual care to those who may have walkers, wheelchairs or other aids. Enrichment Journeys also cannot accommodate pregnant women past their six month gestation period.

Please check with your Personal Vacation Manager to see if certain itineraries are suitable for you and your needs. We are happy to suggest other viable options for you that are more accessible.

Per the requirements of the Americans with Disabilities Act, travelers have the right to be reasonably accommodated in terms of tours in public situations. However, the laws do not apply for trips outside the United States. You must let Enrichment Journeys know ahead of time of any physical limitations, including information added to our questionnaire that needs to be filled out by all passengers. Failure to inform Enrichment Journeys of these limitations could result in refusal to participate, whether it be at the airport through the airline, on board the ship or at the accommodations booked.

If you have any sort of prescription medication, this should be a number one priority in packing. Bring extra, just in case. A small medical kit is also advisable for quick access to remedy minor aches and pains.

While on Tour

Airport transfers

Airport transfers are included as part of your Enrichment Journey. Local representatives will advise you of the departure time from your hotel the night before departure. Generally speaking, arrangements have been made to have you at the airport approximately three hours in advance of departure, though this may vary depending on local circumstances. At the end of the cruise, an airport transfer will also be provided. Please advise your Personal Vacation Manager if you do not require transfer arrangements at the time of booking your Journey.

Briefing sessions

A local host or tour manager will be happy to guide you through the trip and answer all of your questions. Upon arrival to your destination, an Enrichment Journeys representative will have the group go over items such as the daily schedule, cruise details, weather and local customs.

Hotels

All hotels booked by Enrichment Journeys are held to a high standard of comfort and quality, in accordance to international accommodation standards and rating systems. However, each choice varies so you may experience various types of properties on your excursion.

Journey to the Australian Outback and New Zealand

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Journey to the Australian Outback and New Zealand

Regional Information

Travel documentation

Your identification is one of the most important things you will be carrying on your trip. You must have a valid U.S. passport and a visa to enter Australia. Most U.S. passport holders traveling to Australia for tourism or business purposes for less than 90 days can obtain an Electronic Travel Authority (ETA). The ETA is an electronic label-free visa and can be obtained at the ETA website for a small service fee.

For entry into New Zealand, if you are a U.S. citizen, you are eligible for a visa waiver and do not need a visa for tourist stays of three months or less.  You must have a valid passport.  Visit the New Zealand Embassy website for the most current visa information.

Have your passport and visas ready and available at all checkpoints. Scan and copy these documents to print out. It is recommended that you e-mail a copy to yourself and someone back home in the event these documents are misplaced. Also, it may be worth bringing an international ID or license.

Passport and Visa

Your passport must be in good condition and valid for at least 6 months following your departure date. If traveling with a non-US passport, contact your local embassy to ensure this document is the only one needed for passage into Australia and New Zealand.

Visa requirements change frequently and for various reasons. As a result, our Personal Vacation Managers are not always able to provide the most current visa information.

The best way to obtain up-to-date information regarding visa requirements is to visit the official US government website for Americans traveling abroad, Travel.State.Gov, which details specific information on the countries you would like to visit, including visa requirements.

You may also use a third-party visa service, such as CIBT. These services require an additional service fee but make the process of applying for a visa much simpler.

Vaccinations

Vaccinations are not required by law, but it is recommended to protect one’s health from preventable diseases abroad. It is always good to have routine vaccinations up to date when traveling for ailments such as chickenpox, measles and the flu shot. Use your own discretion when deciding on what vaccinations to have and your personal medical history. During this excursion, the utmost care will be taken with prepared food, atmosphere and other elements, so the likelihood of contracting diseases is scarce, especially within Australia and New Zealand.

If you have more questions, feel free to contact the Center for Disease Control and Prevention at 1-800-232-4636 or visit the website at www.cdc.gov.travel.

Electric Current

Have an international electric outlet converter for this trip. Australia uses 240/250v and New Zealand uses 230v for standard outlets. Most hotels will have two and three pronged outlets to use for various appliances. Ship cabins also have outlets for you to use with their converter.

Time Differences

Australia is on Australian Eastern Standard Time (AEST) and is 14 hours ahead of New York City.

New Zealand is on New Zealand Standard Time (NZST) and is 16 hours ahead of New York.

Money Matters

You will need the Australian Dollar and New Zealand Dollar for this Journey. This money is only needed for additional shopping, food or extra expenses, as much of this is included in the trip.

Australian Banknotes:

Banknotes in 1, 2, 5, 10, 20, 50, 100

Coins represent 1, 2, 5, 10, 20, and 50 cents, as well as 1 and 2 dollar coins

Exchange – $1 AUD to .92 USD

New Zealand Banknotes:

Banknotes in 5, 10, 20, 50, 100

Coins represent 10, 20, and 50 cents, as well as 1 and 2 dollar coins

Exchange – $1 NZD to .85 USD

Tipping Guidelines

Tipping is always appreciated but not always required. Expect several instances throughout the hospitality industry in Australia and New Zealand that allow for tipping. Have small bills ready for hotel staff, boat crew, restaurant servers, drivers, guides, and baggage handlers.

Gratuities are included for group meals, at hotels, and at airports. If you have a meal outside the itinerary or hire a resident driver, a few euros is customary. The host, guide, or tour manager can be tipped roughly $8.00-$12.00 USD per person, per day, as can any ship staff member (which is often split at the end of the day by all). Drivers can be tipped $5 USD per person, per day.

Climate

With the tour covering various regions, you will most likely come in contact with warm and/or cool weather, occasional rain, wind and/or damp environments. Check the weather online before embarking for an up-to-date look at the conditions in major destinations.

JAN FEB MAR APR MAY JUN JUL AUG SEP OCT NOV DEC
High/Low in Fahrenheit
Ayers Rock 99/71 96/69 92/63 84/55 74/47 68/41 69/39 73/42 84/52 89/59 93/65 96/68
Sydney 80/67 80/67 78/64 73/58 69/53 64/48 63/46 66/48 70/52 74/56 75/60 79/64
Auckland 73/60 74/61 72/58 68/55 63/52 59/48 58/46 59/47 61/49 64/52 67/55 70/58

Altitude (above sea level, in feet)

Australia:

Sydney – 30

Port Douglas – 13

Ayers Rock – 2,831

New Zealand:

Auckland – 643

Practice the Local Language

Knowing a few phrases in the local vernacular can be a wonderful way to connect with people and feel immersed in the culture. Here are some fun phrases:

Australia

Away with the pixiesdreaming.
Example: She’s not listening. She’s in love and away with the pixies.

Bob’s yer uncle: if you do this (whatever is said first) it will work or be all right.
Example: Just add some extra water and Bob’s yer uncle.

Fifty k’s south of Woop Woop: in the middle of nowhere
Example: He wants to go camping 50 k’s south of Woop Woop.

Full as a goog: drunk or eaten to the excess.
Example: That was a great meal. I am full as a goog.

New Zealand

bun-fight: social gathering with food

buggered: exhausted

boohai: awry, out of the way non-existant place
Example: up the boohai shooting pukeko’s with a long-handled shovel

 

crikey dick!: gosh! wow!

cods wollop: untrue statement or remark is referred to as a “load of cods wollop”.

Facts and Figures

Explore some unusual and fascinating facts about Australia and New Zealand before you embark on your Journey.

Australia

  • The name “Australia” comes from the Latin world “australis”, meaning southern.
  • It is estimated that humans have lived in Australia for around 45,000 years.
  • Australia has over 750 different reptile species, more than any other country in the world.
  • Australia was the second country in the world to give women the right to vote in 1902.
  • Australia is the only place in the world where you can still find the lung fish, which is a living fossil from the Triassic period 350 million years ago.
  • The largest Greek population in the world besides Athens in Greece, can be found in Melbourne, Victoria.

New Zealand

  • In 1893 New Zealand became the first country in the world to give all women the right to vote.
  • The Lord of the Rings movies were filmed in New Zealand.
  • Dairy products are New Zealand’s highest earning exports.
  • New Zealand was the last major landmass to be populated (with the exception of the polar regions).
  • Organized commercial bungee jumping first began in New Zealand.
  • Baldwin Street, in Dunedin, is the world’s steepest street.

Journey to the Australian Outback and New Zealand

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