South Pacific Wonders Including New Zealand's North Island

Cairns, Carins, Great Barrier Reef, Sydney, Auckland, Rotorua, Christchuch, Christchurch, Queenstown, Milford Sound

Explore two great countries of the Southern Hemisphere – Australia and New Zealand. From the tropical splendor of the Great Barrier Reef on Australia's northeast coast to the ethereal beauty of glacial fjords on New Zealand's South Island and Maori cultural and geothermal wonders on New Zealand's North Island, this journey to the lands "Down Under" brings you the best of both countries at an enjoyable pace. Cruise Sydney Harbour and Milford Sound. Meet Australia's wildlife up close. Discover the wonders of Aboriginal culture. Visit Auckland and gain insight into Polynesian culture. Experience an authentic Hangi dinner celebration. Visit the Agrodome and observe a sheep-shearing demonstration.

Our prices start from

$ 3,499 LAND ONLY

18 Days • GUIDED • 26 Meals

Operated Tour

The Details

  • 15 nights accommodation
  • On some dates additional accommodations may be used.
  • Services of a tour manager
  • All on-tour transportation and related fees
  • Hotel-to-hotel baggage handling
  • Round trip home to airport sedan service provided when you purchase airfare through Member Choice Vacations. One transfer per person, per reservation. (Restrictions apply)
  • 15 breakfasts, 3 lunches, 8 dinners

Itinerary

Engaging Experiences These special places and experiences are considered tour highlights. Look for them in the daily itineraries.

Day 1-2 - Depart From Home

Cross the International Dateline, skipping a day ahead. Travel on an adventure of a lifetime.

Day 3 - Cairns, Australia - Tour Begins

Flynn Crystalbrook Collection Hotel, Cairns

Dinner Included

Your tour opens in Cairns, the tropical gateway to one of the world's most spectacular natural attractions and a World Heritage site - the Great Barrier Reef. Established as a marine park in 1975, the reef is a haven for thousands of species of sea life, as well as turtles and birds. Today dinner will be included.

Day 4 - Cairns

Get up close and personal with koalas and native crocodiles at Hartley's Croc Farm.

Flynn Crystalbrook Collection Hotel, Cairns

Breakfast, Dinner Included

Come to know the history of Australia's original inhabitants at the Tjapukai Aboriginal Cultural Center. See traditional dances, learn how to play a didgeridoo or even throw a boomerang. Browse the renowned art gallery and interpretation center's artifact collection. Visit Hartley's Crocodile Adventures to see crocodiles on a nature cruise. Head through rainforests on boardwalks to see animals such as birds, reptiles, and wallabies. Visit with a koala and chat with a wildlife naturalist to learn more about these furry creatures. End your day with a delicious Aussie barbecue. Today breakfast and dinner will be included.

Day 5 - Cairns - Great Barrier Reef - Cairns

Board a catamaran for an exciting excursion to the Great Barrier Reef.

Flynn Crystalbrook Collection Hotel, Cairns

Breakfast, Lunch Included

Board a high-speed catamaran for an exciting excursion to the Great Barrier Reef. Explore the reef from your base on Green Island. Enjoy a glass-bottom boat ride, stroll the island's walking trails, relax on the beach, snorkel or just watch the fish and sea turtles swim past from the pier. For a more adventurous encounter with the reef, an optional outer reef tour is also available. Today breakfast and lunch will be included.

Day 6 - Cairns - Sydney

Novotel Sydney Darling Square, Sydney or The Tank Stream, Sydney

Breakfast Included

The morning is yours. Enjoy your last few hours in Cairns by relaxing and taking in the tropical atmosphere and surrounding neighborhood. Early this afternoon, fly to the bustling city of Sydney. Today breakfast will be included.

Day 7 - Sydney

Novotel Sydney Darling Square, Sydney or The Tank Stream, Sydney

Breakfast Included

See where English colonists first settled during a city tour of Sydney, featuring Kings Cross, the Harbour Bridge, Chinatown, the Rocks, Circular Quay, the Botanic Gardens, and the fashionable suburb of Darlinghurst. Take an expert-led tour of the Sydney Opera House, poised majestically on Sydney Harbour. You'll have the chance to join a special presentation at the National Opal Collection. In the evening, consider an optional dinner and engaging performance at the Sydney Opera House. Today breakfast will be included.

Day 8 - Sydney

Take in the sights during a dinner cruise of Sydney Harbour.

Embrace the exciting city of Sydney during a day of independent exploration. Tonight, say farewell t

Breakfast, Dinner Included

Embrace the exciting city of Sydney during a day of independent exploration. Tonight, say farewell to Australia while on a delightful dinner cruise of Sydney Harbour. Marvel at the scenic vistas of the harbor, showcasing Sydney's magnificent skyline, the iconic Sydney Opera House, and the Harbour Bridge. Today breakfast and dinner will be included.

Day 9 - Sydney - Auckland, New Zealand

Rydges Hotel, Auckland

Breakfast Included

Fly to one of the world's most inspiring and sought after destinations due to its clean air, stunning scenery, and friendly culture - New Zealand. Arrive in Auckland, the "City of Sails." Auckland has the highest Polynesian population in the world, imbuing its chic atmosphere with the vibrant feel of the Pacific Islands. The evening is yours to explore New Zealand's largest city. Today breakfast will be included.

Day 10 - Auckland - Rotorua

Experience a memorable authentic Hangi dinner celebration.

Millennium Hotel, Rotorua

Breakfast, Dinner Included

Get to know the best of Auckland during a panoramic city tour featuring the America's Cup Village, the War Memorial, vibrant Queen Street and the Auckland Harbour Bridge. Next, travel to the dramatic geothermal landscape of Rotorua. Known as the Maori capital of New Zealand, over one-third of Rotorua's population has Maori roots dating back over 1,000 years. Tonight, experience an authentic Hangi dinner celebration and learn about the warm-hearted Maoris as well as their lives before European colonists arrived in Aotearoa (New Zealand) and since. Enjoy an immersive experience featuring authentic Maori entertainment such as the poi dance and the famous "Haka" war challenge. Today breakfast and dinner will be included.

Day 11 - Rotorua

Millennium Hotel, Rotorua

Breakfast, Dinner Included

This morning visit Te Puia, New Zealand's premier Maori cultural and geothermal experience. Witness a landscape of erupting geysers, bubbling mud pools and other geothermal wonders. The National Carving School and National Weaving School are located here, passing on age-old customs by teaching the tribal youth these traditional skills. Take part in an interactive demonstration on the art of weaving. You will also view the Kiwi bird and learn what is being done in an effort to remove the Kiwi from the endangered species list. Next, meet the skilled carvers who work with pounamu – New Zealand greenstone – at a local jade factory. Then, visit the Agrodome where you will see a fun sheep shearing demonstration and learn about the importance of agriculture to the nation. Tonight, relax or explore this lovely city on your own.

Day 12 - Rotorua - Christchurch

Dine with a Kiwi family in their home.

Novotel Christchurch Cathedral Square, Christchurch

Breakfast, Dinner Included

A short flight brings you to the historic city of Christchurch. Devastated by an earthquake in early 2011, see firsthand how the city known as "the Garden City" is recreating itself. Make yourself right at home this evening when a New Zealand family welcomes you into their home for dinner. This is sure to be an unforgettable experience. Make new friends, learn about the customs of the "Kiwis," and enjoy a home-cooked meal. Today breakfast and dinner will be included.

Day 13 - Christchurch

Novotel Christchurch Cathedral Square, Christchurch

Breakfast Included

Start your morning with a city tour of Christchurch. Pay a visit to Willowbank Wildlife Reserve. A leader in the conservation of New Zealand species, Willowbank offers the chance to view New Zealand's "Big 5" - the Kiwi, the Kea, the Tuatara, the Kaka, and the Takahe - up close and personal. Today breakfast will be included.

Day 14 - Christchurch - Queenstown

Millennium Hotel, Queenstown

Breakfast, Dinner Included

Depart Christchurch and make your way south to Queenstown. Known as the "Adventure Capital of the World," Queenstown is nestled against a picturesque bay and snowcapped mountains. Arrive in Queenstown in the afternoon and have time to explore independently. Today breakfast and dinner will be included.

Day 15 - Queenstown - Milford Sound - Queenstown

Millennium Hotel, Queenstown

Breakfast, Lunch Included

Enjoy the rugged grandeur of the Hollyford Valley as you travel through an ancient beech forest via the Homer Tunnel. Cruise the Milford Sound and see why this fjord is one of the most visited sights on the South Island. Following your cruise, you may choose to return to Queenstown via a short optional flight (weather permitting) for spectacular views of New Zealand's Southern Alps. Today breakfast and lunch will be included.

Day 16 - Queenstown

Millennium Hotel, Queenstown

Breakfast Included

A free day offers a variety of optional activities to enhance your tour. Shop or people-watch in the village; partake in an optional jet boat ride on the Shotover River; or join an optional tour taking you through the majestic Queenstown countryside showcasing many of the locations where blockbuster movies have been filmed. Today breakfast will be included.

Day 17 - Queenstown

Millennium Hotel, Queenstown

Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner Included

Cruise Lake Wakatipu and head to Mt. Nicholas High Country Farm, a family-run merino sheep farm. En route, see Cecil Peak, Bob's Cove and Mt. Earnslaw. In your exclusive visit, follow the behind-the-scenes process from mustering sheep to wool garments. Enjoy a fresh farmer's lunch before sailing back. Later, it's your choice! Go bird watching at the Kiwi Birdlife Park -OR- take a gondola to the top of Bob's Peak for stunning panoramic views of the area. Gather for a farewell dinner and enjoy a local paddock-to-plate meal. Today breakfast, lunch and dinner will be included.

Day 18 - Queenstown - Tour Ends

Breakfast Included

Your tour comes to a close today, leaving you with many pleasant memories of a wonderful adventure. Today breakfast will be included.

Pricing is per person, double occupancy, land and on-tour flights only, based on June 10, 2021 travel date. Single supplement from $1,000. International airfare is additional. Call AAA for current airfare rates and availability. Itinerary featured is for May 2020 – April 2021 tour departures. Departures prior will vary. On some dates alternate hotels may be used..

All this makes it AAA Vacations®

AAA Complimentary Inclusion: $75 per person credit toward an optional excursion

Member Benefit: $50 per person savings

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