Australian Family Adventure
PLEASE NOTE: We can help you add, adjust and tailor the itinerary to suit your requirements. Each clients itinerary is different. We work to your budget and take advantage of current specials in the marketplace for your time of travel.
Destinations: Melbourne, Port Douglas, Daintree Forest, Sydney
Experiences: Culture, Scenery, Wildlife, Relaxation, Adventure
No. of days: 13 days
Australia is a great place for a family adventure. Starting in Melbourne tour the city, laneways and markets enjoying the relaxed vibe of cafes, arcades, galleries and gardens. Kayak on the Yarra and feast on a locals favorite dish fish and chips. Take your time discovering one of the world’s most liveable cities. Head off to the Tropical North and explore the Great Barrier Reef snorkeling this amazing reef system before discovering the beauty of the Daintree Rainforest. Learn about Aboriginal culture and try your hand at traditional fishing techniques before making your own bush tucker. Discover Sydney even heading backstage at the Sydney Opera House, climbing the Sydney Harbour Bridge at dusk and taking a surfing lesson at Bondi Beach. Walk the beautiful Sydney coastal tracks taking you from beach to beach. Visit the Blue Mountains to see the Three Sisters rock formation and Featherdale Wildlife Park for a hands on wildlife encounter. There’s something for everyone on this fantastic Australian adventure.
DAY BY DAY:
Day 1: Arrive in Melbourne, transfer to your accommodation. Enjoy the rest of the day at leisure. (3 nights Melbourne)
Day 2: You’re off on a Melbourne city tour this morning. Melbourne is known for its gardens, restaurants, cafes and markets, arcades and laneway, galleries, the arts and its relaxed elegant charm. It is also home to the Australian Open Tennis, Australian rules football and the Melbourne Cup horse race. Enjoy seeing the highlights of Melbourne city with a guided laneways walk, and time to explore the famous Queen Victoria Markets. Spend the afternoon revisiting any areas of interest from your morning tour. This evening you get to enjoy a moonlight kayak tour. Experience the magic of Melbourne's waterways at sunset on this unique kayaking tour of Docklands and downtown Melbourne. Stop for fish and chips dinner which is enjoyed in the boats while the sun sets. Take in the views of the city skyline as you gently glide down the tranquil Yarra River. Along the way the guide will share commentary on interesting facts about the Yarra River and the founding of Melbourne.
Day 3: Spend today enjoying Melbourne. We recommend walking on St Kilda Beach, visiting Melbourne Zoo, SEA LIFE Melbourne Acquarium, Melbourne Botanic Gardens and Old Melbourne Goal as some great family friendly activities.
Day 4: You leave Melbourne today and head to Cairns. Transfer to the airport to board your flight to Cairns. Arrive in Cairns, transfer to Port Douglas and check into your accommodation. Spend the rest of the day exploring the cute town of Port Douglas or relaxing on Four Mile Beach. (3 nights Port Douglas)
Day 5: You get to spend the day exploring the Great Barrier Reef today. Unwind while you snorkel, the pristine warm waters off the coast of Port Douglas to visit spectacular reefs and beautiful coral bombies. Even if you've never snorkeled before, this is an opportunity you can't afford to miss! The day consists of visiting 3 breathtaking sites on the reef with ample time to relax, enjoy and explore spectacular reefs with abundant marine life. The crew provides professional supervision and tuition, with a comprehensive snorkeling safety brief and guided snorkel tour. Flotation devices and in water assistance are provided. Lunch, morning and afternoon tea are included.
Day 6: Learn about aboriginal culture on a Dreaming day tour. You’ll be collected from your accommodation by your tour guides and start your day on Cooya Beach, a traditional fishing ground of the Kuku Yalanji people. Here you will be introduced to traditional fishing and gathering techniques with the aim of finding your own bush tucker(food). Your catch may include crabs, mussels and fish, which are cooked up for everyone to share with homemade damper on the balcony of the family home. Continue to Mossman Gorge Cultural Centre: Here you are greeted with a traditional smoking ceremony conducted by Aboriginal people with specialized cultural knowledge to welcome people to their land. Enjoy lunch then explore the gallery, which is filled with artworks from prominent and emerging local artists of the area. Wander into the lush rainforest of the World Heritage Listed Daintree National Park -Mossman Gorge. Experience one of the world's oldest and most beautiful rainforests with your Adventure North guide. Your guide will explain the rich flora, fauna and diverse ecosystem of this amazing rainforest. Bring your bathers so you can swim in a beautiful private swimming hole surrounded by rainforest.
Day 7: Today you leave Port Douglas for Silky Oaks a luxury lodge set in the rainforest, the perfect base to explore the Daintree Rainforest. Lodge activities to enjoy are walks, yoga, kayaking, canoeing, snorkeling and mountain bikes. There are bespoke experiences you can add to your itinerary including rainforest expeditions, Great Barrier Reef activities, indigenous encounters, hot air ballooning, fishing charters, scuba diving, golf and more. (2 nights Silky Oaks Lodge)
Day 8: Today is at your leisure to enjoy Silky Oaks Lodge activities or indulge in a bespoke experience.
Day 9: Transfer from Silky Oaks Lodge to Cairns airport for your flight to Tasmania. Board your flight from Cairns to Sydney. Arrive in Sydney, transfer to your accommodation. This afternoon you have a tour of the Sydney Opera House one of the world's most recognisable landmarks and this is your chance to truly get up-close. Run your hands over the world-famous shell tiles, take a seat in the elegant custom-made white birch timber chairs and marvel at the vaulted ceilings. Visit areas off-limits to the public and capture photographs from rare vantage points. Explore theatres and foyers where more than 1600 concerts, operas, dramas and ballets take place each year. (4 nights Sydney)
Day 10: You’re off to explore Sydney this morning on a city sights tour. Visit the historic Rocks area and hear early convict history. Enjoy magnificent views of the Opera House and Harbour Bridge. See the shopping heart of the city, Queen Victoria Building and Sydney Tower. Visit Sydney's trendy Oxford Street district and travel through Paddington with its terrace houses before arriving at the Pacific Ocean. See the superb coast cliff walk around Tamarama and Bronte. Travel on to famous Bondi Beach and visit the beachfront promenade with time to enjoy a coffee or cool drink (at own cost). See Aussie lifesavers and Sydney's best panoramic view at Dover Heights. Return to Sydney via Double Bay, Kings Cross and Mrs Macquarie's Point for a final magical viewpoint over the harbour before returning to the city centre. This evening you have a twilight climb of the Sydney Harbour Bridge. You will be led by one of BridgeClimb's professional Climb Leaders, on a 3.5 hour guided journey (including preparation and briefing), to the top of the Sydney Harbour Bridge. The Climb takes you along the outer arch of the Bridge on catwalks and ladders all the way to the summit, 134 metres above Sydney Harbour. The steady incline to the summit leaves you free to focus your attention on the surroundings, with the opportunity to witness 360 degree views of Sydney including east to the Sydney Opera House, west to the Blue Mountains and the Harbour city surrounds.
Day 11: Leaving the city behind you head to the Blue Mountains today. Experience the Blue Mountains as they should be seen - from secluded lookouts and short bushwalks. Take in the beauty and fresh mountain air exploring the sights at Wentworth Falls. At Echo Point, beside the famous Three Sisters rock formation take time to visit the Waradah Aboriginal Culture Centre for an insight into this fascinating ancient culture with a dynamic dance and didgeridoo performance. Enjoy a 2 course restaurant lunch in the mountain village of Katoomba which is also a great place to wander to enjoy the shops and galleries. In the afternoon, head to Featherdale Wildlife Park for a hands on Australian native wildlife encounter and the chance to pat a koala and feed kangaroos. Return to the city in style by River Cruise, a relaxing way to see this beautiful Harbour city.
Day 12: Spend the morning at beautiful Bondi Beach and learn to surf. For the ultimate in surfing instruction you have a private lesson for the whole family. Bondi Beach is one of Australia’s most famous beaches and synonymous with surfing, you get to experience this firsthand. After your surf lesson, enjoy one of Sydney’s most famous coastal hiking trails the Bondi to Coogee walk. Along the way you’ll visit 5 of Australia’s best beaches, stunning ocean views, parks, cafés and restaurants. This popular walk is a wonderful way to finish off your visit to Sydney.
Day 13: Today you leave Sydney and head home. Transfer to the airport and board your return flight.
3 nights Melbourne
3 nights Port Douglas
2 nights Silky Oaks Lodge
4 nights Sydney
Melbourne City tour
Yarra River kayaking with dinner
Great Barrier Reef day out including snorkeling
Cultural Daydreaming Tour
Sydney Opera House tour
Sydney city sights tour
Sydney Harbour Bridge Climb
Blue Mountains Tour
Featherdale Wildlife Park
Bondi Beach surfing lesson
All aspects of this itinerary can be changed to suit your requirements.
The itineraries provided are great introductions to your chosen destination. You can create a travel plan using the itinerary provided or make modifications to destinations, activities and accommodation and create the dream trip you want.
Not every traveler is the same, we get that and so that’s why we recommend making changes to suit your needs. In fact, we insist - we want you to have the best trip.
If you would like any recommendations for dinner or shopping areas please let us know we are happy to help and make bookings for you where necessary
To travel to Australia you will need a US passport valid for at least 6 months and we can process an ETA Visa for free for US Citizens. We will need a copy of your Photo Page of your Passport. Nationalities of any other countries please enquire with your agent to see if you are eligible for a free ETA Visa or if you need to apply for a Visitor Visa.
To travel to New Zealand you will need a US passport valid for at least 6 months and an NZeTA (New Zealand Electronic Travel Authority. More information on the NZeTA application requirements and process can be found on our FAQ page here.
We highly recommend purchasing travel insurance to protect your investment. We will provide a travel insurance quote at the time of booking, and you are free to use our recommended insurance with Travelguard, find your own, or book without insurance.
A product that we can offer is a Cancel For Any Reason policy that will provide you with 80% back in refunds. If the cancellation is for medical reasons there is a 100% refund..
Downunder Journeys services travel requests from the United States and Canada for travel to Australia, New Zealand, Fiji, Cook Islands and Tahiti. All pricing on this website is in US Dollars.
All of the sample itineraries on this website do not include airfares as the airfare price changes daily and to ensure you get the best possible price we will work with the best airfares at the time. If you happen to buy your airfare first and then need a package to fit it, we can certainly help with that as well, just let us know.
As an idea for a 2-week vacation to Australia or New Zealand we recommend a budget of around $8,000-10,000 (including economy airfare), this would be for a 4 star and above itinerary, a little cheaper if we did more moderate accommodations.