Advertorial – My first trip to Australia was as a young child, travelling with my parents to visit my Mom’s family. Even as a young kid, after hearing many stories of waltzing kangaroos, sleepy koalas and walkabouts in the outback, I was pumped to explore this place for all of the fun things I’d heard about. That sentiment really hasn’t changed over the years. As I visited in my adult years, once on a cruise around Australia and New Zealand and again on Craig Travel’s 50th anniversary cruise earlier this year, I still have a love for this magnificent land and a desire to make repeat visits to explore more.
I know I am not alone in that sentiment, as Craig Travel’s 23-day Australia and New Zealand February journey is consistently one of our most popular annual trips. It’s truly the ultimate destination on many travellers’ bucket lists.
In both Australia and New Zealand, we explore all of the major highlights and we do it at a relaxed, leisurely-paced, staying two or three nights in most centres. Our journey starts in New Zealand in the stunning “city of sails,” Auckland, on the north island. Highlights on the north island include the famous Waitomo Caves with a cruise inside to view the thousands of sparkling glow worms overhead. In Rotorua, the Maori introduce their traditions, complete with a traditional dinner and entertainment. Always a special highlight is a homestay spending dinner and overnight with a local New Zealand family and here many friendships are made.
On the south island, we have lots of time to explore the fun resort town of Queenstown. A cruise across the lake takes us to a delightful mountainous setting at a sheep station for a demonstration on how the sheep dogs are trained to herd sheep. This is followed by an extensive, delicious dinner in this spectacular setting. Our drive to Te Anau for a luncheon cruise to Milford Sound is a magical experience. The sheer cliffs, the inky black water and the towering alpine peaks looming overhead create a stunning scene.
There is no shortage of legendary sites and highlights in Australia either! Amongst other unique landmarks, you will be able to explore the Great Barrier Reef with a chance to swim and snorkel in this special place; a narrow gauge rail journey through lush rainforests and stunning canyons to Kuranda; the awe-inspiring Uluru, or Ayers Rock in all of its massive, red rock glory alone in the outback and on that evening, a truly unforgettable experience…the Sounds of Silence dinner, a spectacular outdoor event in the desert, complete with white tablecloths, fine wine and an incredible dinner under the stars! No tour of Australia would be complete without time spent in the beautiful city of Sydney, where a wonderful five nights gives plenty of time to take in the best of the city ….The Opera House, a harbour cruise and city tour, the botanical gardens and a visit to a wildlife park where you can even hold a koala!
These are but a few of the many extraordinary experiences on this fabulous journey. There’s a $300pp* Early Booking Bonus when you book and deposit by October 31st, so why not move this one from your bucket list into reality this coming February?
Photo Credit Rob Craig