Ultimate Australian Escape
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: Sydney, Uluru, Lizard Island, Daintree
Experiences: Culture, Scenery, Wildlife, Food and Wine, Relaxation
No. of days: 11 days / 10 nights
Hit the ground running in Sydney with a tour of historic sights and landmarks, the perfect way to orientate yourself to the beautiful city and harbor. Tour the iconic Sydney Opera House, go behind the scenes and learn about its fascinating history. Head out of the city and discover the Blue Mountains where you also visit an Aboriginal Cultural Center and wander through a wildlife park for an Australian native wildlife encounter. Head to the Red Center for a memorable stay at Uluru. Enjoy dinner under the stars and a tour of the stunning rock formations and Uluru. For a complete change of scenery you’re off to Lizard Island, a private luxury lodge in the Great Barrier Reef. The resort is right on the Great Barrier Reef one of the greatest natural wonders of the world and yours to explore. From the Great Barrier Reef, you move to the rainforest to stay at Silky Oaks Lodge the perfect place to explore the world heritage listed Daintree Rainforest.
DAY BY DAY:
Day 1: Arrive into Sydney. You’ll be transported to your city accommodation. (3 nights Sydney)
Day 2: Enjoy a half day panoramic tour of Sydney to see the historic sights and landmarks including the Rocks area, magnificent views of the Opera House and Harbour Bridge, 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. This afternoon you get to experience a guided tour of the Sydney Opera House a world heritage listed building. After your tour, indulge like a local Sydney-sider with a choice of Australian inspired mains at Opera Bar with some of the best harbour views in Sydney.
Day 3: You’re off to see the Blue Mountains today as they should be seen - from secluded lookouts and short bushwalks. Take in the beauty and fresh mountain air exploring the sites. 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 4: Today you leave Sydney for Uluru/Ayers Rock. Transfer to Sydney airport for your flight to Ayers Rock. This evening you get to enjoy an unforgettable evening at Sounds of Silence eating beautifully prepared food under the sparkling outback sky. The journey begins on a lone sand dune. A meandering path takes participants to an uninterrupted, 360-degree view of this vast landscape. In front is the fabled Uluru; behind are the domes of Kata Tjuta and possibly the most spectacular sunset you have ever seen. Here enjoy sparkling wine and a selection of delectable canapés. As the sun sets in a blaze of reds and oranges and into the starlit night, feast on a gourmet barbecue buffet of authentic Australian delicacies including barramundi, kangaroo, crocodile, bush salads and classic desserts, complemented by some of Australia's finest wines. The resident astronomer takes diners on an unforgettable tour of the spectacular southern night sky. (2 nights Ayres Rock)
Day 5: It’s an early start today for your tour to Uluru Kata Tjuta National Park. From there is it a 40km journey through the desert landscape to the mighty rock formation. On arrival at the viewing area, walk to the best vantage point to see the 36 domes that comprise this spiritual place while watching the sun's morning glow as the desert comes alive. Head to the western side of Kata Tjuta where there is the opportunity to relax and enjoy an outdoor picnic breakfast. Approach the entrance to Walpa Gorge. Take a stroll between these mighty conglomerate rock walls as the guide explains how the environment and the geology has evolved over millions of years.
You’re off to explore Uluru this afternoon. The first stop allows you a photographic opportunity of this amazing icon. Walk along the Mala Walk at the base of Uluru to the impressive Kantju Gorge. Here you can learn about the Mala People and the importance of their ceremonies. Further around the base of Uluru, walk along the Kuniya Walk and visit Mutitjulu Waterhole. Here you will learn of the Creation stories. You will see ancient rock art and learn how Uluru was, and still is, a significant location for teaching young Aboriginal people. Then adjourn to the new Talinguru Nyakunytjaku viewing area where you will observe an uninterrupted view of Uluru with Kata Tjuta in the background. Enjoy a glass of sparkling wine as you watch the sun set. Return to your accommodation at Ayers Rock Resort.
Day 6: Today you’re leaving Uluru for Lizard Island. Transfer to the airport for your flight to Cairns, then onward to Lizard Island. Upon arrival you’ll be transferred to Lizard Island Resort, located right on the Great Barrier Reef. Enjoy the outstanding activities available at this stunning luxury resort such as spectacular diving and snorkeling, discover secluded pristine beaches by foot or by motorized dinghy with a gourmet picnic just for two. Try bushwalking, sailing, fishing, glass bottom boat trip (additional cost), or perhaps indulge in a pampering treatment at the luxurious Azure Spa. Dine on the fresh, creative menu that showcases the best of local produce. All meals, beverages and many island activities are included. (3 nights Lizard Island)
Day 7: Lizard Island Resort provides guests with a variety of free recreational activities including use of motorized dinghies, tennis, paddle skis, a well-equipped gymnasium and much more to explore the extraordinary nature. For trips to the inner or outer reef and Azure Spa treatments charges may apply. If you have enough of water, you may engage in self-guided walks. There are a variety of trails on which you can learn about Lizard Island's original inhabitants and their bush tucker, follow the footsteps of James Cook on a hike to the summit of Cook's Look or visit Watson's Cottage to learn about Lizard Island's first European inhabitants.
Day 8: Enjoy time at leisure to explore at your own pace or relax at your lodge.
Day 9: Today you leave Lizard Island on a flight to Cairns, then transfer to Silky Oaks lodge in Mossman. Experience the ancient wonders of the Daintree at Silky Oaks Lodge, an oasis of elegance and beauty, nestled on the edge of a World Heritage-listed rainforest. The Lodge blends contemporary design and casual sophistication, where the sights and sounds of the rainforest surround you. 36 stylish Treehouses and 4 Treehouse Suites. Only 20 minutes from Port Douglas, Silky Oaks Lodge provides the perfect base for exploring the Great Barrier Reef, Atherton Tablelands, Cape Tribulation and the Daintree River. (2 nights Mossman)
Day 10: Today you’re on a full day private tour with Silky Oaks Lodge and visit a variety of different environments throughout the day including estuary, mangroves, rainforest and beach. The first stop is Mill Walk in Cape Tribulation National Park, a private track. Away from the crowds, marvel at the ancient rainforest surrounds and learn about the ecology and fauna from your expert naturalist guide. After a short drive, you will arrive at Myall Beach where a relaxing stroll offers spectacular views of the Cape Tribulation and the Great Dividing Range.
Day 11: Begin your journey home today. Transfer from Silky Oaks Lodge to Cairns Airport.
3 Nights Sydney
2 Nights Ayres Rock
3 Nights Lizard Island
2 Nights Mossman (Daintree) – Silky Oaks Lodge
½ Panoramic Sydney Sights tour
Sydney Opera House Tour
Blue Mountain Tour
Featherdale Wildlife Park, pat a koala and feed kangaroos
Sounds of Silence Dinner
Ayers Rock tour
Kata Tjuta Domes
Guided rainforest walk.
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.