Dive Australia & Tour Kangaroo Island [DiveSOF16]

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Spirit of Freedom Vessel, Australia Great Ocean Road, Australia 22 Days / 20 Nights

Cairns, Live-Aboard Diving Expedition, The Outback, Great Ocean Road, Kangaroo Island, Sydney, Australia

Cairns (2 Nights); Live-Aboard Diving Expedition (7 Nights); Alice Springs (1 Night), Ayers Rock (2 Nights), Great Ocean Road (3 Nights - Own Arrangements), Kangaroo Island (2 Nights), Sydney (3 Nights)

This itinerary departs from the USA on Friday evening with one day spent in transit arriving into Australia on Sunday morning.

Stay in Cairns for one night before you board the diving vessel the next morning (Monday). This city of Cairns is a modern, sophisticated city, offering access to World Heritage-listed Great Barrier Reef and islands, rainforests and the Australia Outback. Cairns, offers a comfortable blend of traditional and modern designs. Stroll past the boutique shops, dine al fresco at an award-winning restaurant, cafe or bar or be inspired at a cultural centre or art gallery. It is also the base for the awesome Spirit of Freedom 120ft live-aboard dive boat

The dive vessel departs Cairns 12:00 noon Monday and returns 07:00 am the following Monday. You will be transferred to and from your accommodation. Your expedition will last for 7 nights and after disembarking from the dive vessel stay in Cairns for one additional night.

Next spend one night in the modern town of Alice Springs which is Australia's most inland town, sitting around 200km south of the absolute centre of the continent. Having both western and Aboriginal influences the town's focal point, the Todd Mall hosts a number of Aboriginal art galleries and community events. A communications and commerce hub, it is now an important service centre for the surrounding area home to a population of approximately 28,000 people.

Then head to Ayers Rock for two nights, where you will marvel at one of the world's most beautiful natural wonders, Uluru (Ayers Rock). The impact of the vast monolith has acquired its reputation not just, because it is such a unique landform, but also because of the effect, the sun has on its colours and appearance. Sunrises and Sunsets cause changes to its colour from browns though oranges, reds to finally grey.

Take three days to explore the Victorian coastline, the Great Ocean Road. The rock formations and the coastline that you will experience are inspirational and breathtaking. Return your car to Adelaide after exploring the region.

Kangaroo Island is an island seven times the size of Singapore, with a rich abundance of wildlife. The koalas aren't being cuddled - they're relaxing at home in native trees. The seals aren't performing - they're lazing beside you on the beach. There are echidnas, platypi, goannas, wallabies and kangaroos; all thriving; all mesmerizing. Half the native bush land on Kangaroo Island remains just as it was when British navigator Matthew Flinders put a name to this untamed wilderness in 1802. And more than one-third of the Island is National or Conservation Park. But beauty comes in many forms: views from seaside cottages and cliff-top cabins; delicate handcrafted glassware; a day at the races in Kingscote. And, of course, there's the wine and food. Take a drive, collect wine, cheeses, oysters and lobsters, and indulge on a secluded beach.

Lastly stay in Australia's oldest city for two nights, Sydney, the economic powerhouse of the nation and the country's capital in everything but its name. It's blessed with sun-drenched natural attractions, dizzy skyscrapers, delicious and daring restaurants, superb shopping and friendly folk. Bursting with character, Sydney is a vibrant city catering to all your desires whether you seek exhilaration and exploration or 100% relaxation.

Your arrival day from Australia back into the USA will be on Sunday morning.

Travel Package Features

[DiveSOF16] Dive Australia & Tour Kangaroo Island
  • Accommodation - Cairns (1 Night), Live-Aboard Diving Vessel (7 Nights), Cairns (1 Night), Alice Springs (1 Night), Ayers Rock (2 Nights), Great Ocean Road (3 Nights - Own Arrangements), Kangaroo Island (2 Nights), Sydney (3 Nights)
  • US Domestic Flights (Not Included) - As per your own arrangements.
  • International Flight - Los Angles to Brisbane, Sydney to Los Angeles
  • Australian Domestic Flight - Brisbane to Cairns, Cairns to Alice Springs, Ayers Rock to Melbourne, Adelaide to Sydney
  • Day Tours - Alice Springs: Deluxe Coach to Ayers Rock; Ayers Rock: Uluru Tour Pass; Kangaroo Island: Penguin Parade; Sydney: Opera House
  • Shuttle Transfers - Cairns Airport to Accommodation (return), Sydney Airport to Accommodation (return); Alice Springs Airport to Accommodation, Ayers Rock Accommodation to Airport
  • Ferry Transfer - Cape Jervis to Kangaroo Island & Return
  • Car Rental - 5 Days: Pickup Melbourne Airport, Drop-off Adelaide Airport
  • Rental Car (Base rate only) does not include taxes, insurance, fuel levies, drop off fees, or environmental fees.
  • All Other Day Tours are Optional and Not Included
  • Itinerary is flexible and can be tailored to suit your needs.
  • Visa Issuance for entry into Australia (US$15.00 per person)
  • F.I.T. (Free & Independent Travel, i.e. Not an Organized Group Tour)
  • Other Common Inclusions for Dive Packages:
  • Live-Aboard Diving Expedition includes: Transfers to/ from Cairns city accommodation, Opportunity for 24 to 26 dives, En-suite cabin with daily service, Chef prepared meals, Australian wine & soft drinks with evening meals.

Travel Package Detailed Itinerary

(Day 1) - International Flight - Los Angeles to Cairns, Australia
From USA to Australia Shortly after departing Los Angeles you will be served dinner and you will be given breakfast before landing.

Relax, watch some movies, and try to get some sleep!


Please confirm with the airlines at Check-in that they have all your Frequent Flyer information on record.
(Day 2) - Shuttle Transfer - Cairns Airport to Cairns Accommodation
Cairns, Australia Travel by shuttle from the Cairns Airport to your vacation accommodation in Cairns, Australia.

<b>Need to Know</b>
Luggage Restrictions: 1 checked bag and 1 hand luggage is free of charge per person in the shuttle. Additional luggage is 10$ each. Strollers are free. Bikes need to be in a bike bag. Fishing rods need to be broken down and in a container.
(Days 2 to 3) - 1 Night Accommodation in Beautiful Cairns
Enjoy 1 night at your 4-Star CAIRNS accommodation.

Nestled in the tropical paradise of Cairns, this remarkable hotel captivates guests with its warm hospitality, exceptional service, and breathtaking views. The accommodations offer a harmonious blend of comfort and style, complemented by the hotel's prime location near dining, shopping, and cultural attractions. From the inviting restaurant to the attentive staff, every aspect ensures an unforgettable stay. Discover a tranquil oasis in Cairns that promises cherished memories for discerning travelers.
 
<b>Hotel Amenities</b>
Free Wi-Fi, Swimming Pool, 24-hr Reception, Luggage Storage, Bar, Restaurant, Paid Parking, Room Service  
 
<b> Preferred Room</b>
Standard Room - 1 King or 2 Singles - Room Features: Mini Fridge ; Private Balcony ; Air Conditioning ; Shower Amenities ; Hairdryer ; Safe ; Smart TV.
 
<b>Room Upgrades</b>
Past T12-15 (Other Upgraded Room Types)
- Executive Room - 1 King or 2 Singles - Room Features: Mini Fridge ; Private Balcony ; Air Conditioning ; Shower Amenities ; Hairdryer ; Safe ; Esplanade, Trinity Inlet, or Ocean Views ; Flat Screen TV.
- Deluxe - 1 King or 2 Singles - Room Features: Mini Fridge ; Private Balcony ; Air Conditioning ; Shower Amenities ; Hairdryer ; Safe ; Flat Screen TV.
- Tropical Luxe - 1 King or 2 Singles - Room Features: Mini Fridge ; Same level as the pool deck ; Air Conditioning ; Shower Amenities ; Hairdryer ; Safe ; Pod coffee machine ; 42-inch Flat Screen TV.
- Tropical Luxe Premium - 1 King or 2 Singles - Room Features: Mini Fridge ; Pod Coffee Machine ; Air Conditioning ; Shower Amenities ; Luxury skincare & Hairdryer ; Safe ; Located on Levels 2 & 3 ; Washer & Dryer ; 50-inch Flat Screen TV ; Two-person bath.
 
<b>Need to know</b>
Hotel subject to availability. If this hotel is not available, a similar hotel will be substituted. Room booked will be preferred unless otherwise listed on your quote.
(Days 3 to 10) - Diving Expedition - 7 Nights Live-Aboard Great Barrier Reef
For diving enthusiasts this liveaboard dive trip represents the ultimate dive vacation. Dives include Osprey Reef, on the Coral Sea with other sites such as Cod Hole, Dynamite Pass, North Horn, Bougainville Reef, Steve's Bommie, Temple of Doom and Flare Point. With Gourmet Meals and the Outstanding Level of Service you will feel like you are aboard your own private yacht.

Special Expeditions: In June/July this trip offers the chance to swim with Minke Whales as they congregate in the Ribbon Reefs.

<h3>Day 1: Depart Cairns & Dive</h3>
The Spirit of Freedom courtesy bus will pick you up from your Cairns hotel around 11:00 am to transfer you to Trinity Wharf. There you will be greeted by the Spirit of Freedom crew, who will give you an orientation of the vessel before you depart on your 7-night liveaboard dive trip at 12:00 noon.

Enjoy lunch on board while you cruise to the Outer Great Barrier Reef for an afternoon check-out dive and a twilight or night dive.

After dinner, cruise north to the Ribbon Reefs.

<h3>Days 2 & 3: Diving Ribbon Reefs </h3>
These two days are spent diving at the most northern of the Ribbon Reefs, Number 9 & 10 Ribbon Reefs.

Dive sites and sequence may vary depending on the weather conditions, but will always include at least one dive at the Cod Hole, where you encounter a family of massive and very friendly Potato Cod. Other sites may include Wonder-wall, Pixie Pinnacle, Challenger Bay, Two Towers, Lighthouse Bommie, and the Snake Pit, just to name a few.

If the current is right, you may also take a drift dive at Dynamite Pass, well known as a channel for sharks to pass through. 4 to 5 dives will be available each day, including a night dive on Friday. On Saturday evening overnight at Watson’s Bay, Lizard Island, and enjoy a sunset BBQ dinner on the top deck.

<h3>Day 4: Mountain Walk & More Diving</h3>
This morning after breakfast you will have the opportunity to go ashore at Lizard Island. This is a good chance to stretch your legs on land at the halfway point of your trip! We recommend taking the guided walk from Watson’s Beach to Mary Watson’s cottage, over Chinaman’s Ridge, and back to the beach.

Around 11.00 am you will cruise back to Ribbon Reef Number 10 for two dives at a choice of sites including the Snake Pit, Cod Hole, Challenger Bay, Lighthouse Bommie, and Pixie Wall, and Pixie Pinnacle.

If the tide permits you may repeat a dive at the Cod Hole or visit new sites. Depart in the evening for a 10-hour crossing to Osprey Reef in the Coral Sea.

<h3>Days 5 & 6: Dive Osprey Reef</h3>
Two days will be spent diving Osprey Reef (weather permitting). Australia’s Coral Sea reefs are renowned for their crystal clear water, with visibility ranging from 30 to 100 metres. The landscape is amazing, with sheer walls laced with gorgonian fans, sea whips, and bright yellow soft corals, rising from the ocean floor thousands of feet below.

‘North Horn’ is a dive site at the tip of Osprey where grey reef sharks, silvertips, and the occasional oceanic congregate, and you can experience a close encounter with the Spirit of Freedom shark attraction dive. Four to five dives will be available each day, including a night dive on Monday.

On Tuesday night depart Osprey Reef for overnight travel to the Ribbon Reefs.

<h3>Day 7: Dive Bougainville Reef or in the Ribbon Reefs</h3>
After overnight travel back to the Great Barrier Reef arrive at Ribbon Reefs Number 3 where you will dive such sites as the sensational Steve's Bommie, Temple of Doom, and Flare Point. A second option for this day, in special weather conditions, is to head south from Opsrey to Bougainville Reef, known for its unusual underwater landscape and caverns, and its partially submerged wreck. This evening you will cruise overnight back to Cairns.

<h3>Day 8: Arrive in Cairns</h3>
Arrive Cairns approximately 06:30am. Breakfast will be served on board and hotel transfer will be arranged for approx 8:00am.

<b>Operates</b>
Departs Cairns every Thursday at 12:00pm & returns to Cairns every Thursday at 8:00am

<b>Includes</b>
<ul>
<li>Chef-prepared drinks meals & snacks, wine and soft drinks are included with the evening meal.
</li>
<li>Tanks, air fills, Nautilus Lifeline and weight belt. Full equiptment rental available for fee. </li>
<li>Daily cabin service. </li>
<li>Cairns hotel or Airport transfers.</li>
<li>GST and all reef levies and fees.</li></ul>

<b>Need to Know</b>
Please note that above itinerary is a sample only and sites may vary, or the sequence may change. Access to the Cod Hole and the Coral Sea is weather conditional and while every attempt will be made to keep to the advertised itinerary, the Coral Sea and specific sites on the Great Barrier Reef are not guaranteed.

Diver experience recommendation: Advanced Diver certification with minimum 20 ocean dives including 5 dives in the last 12 months.

Diver Health: If you have a medical condition or are currently taking prescription medication, you will need a medical clearance. For further details refer to our Diver Information form or contact our Reservations team.

Luggage Restrictions: Due to light aircraft restrictions, your total weight of your luggage is limited to 20 kilograms/ 45 lb per person, including your dive gear and carry-on luggage.

Snorkelers: Only the Ribbon Reefs portion of this trip is suitable for snorkelers.The (at times) deeper reefs tops and swift currents of the Coral Sea, make the Coral Sea reefs only suitable for very experienced snorkelers and strong swimmers with a high level of fitness. You may not be able to snorkel at every site. Please note that while you may be safe under the watchful eye of the 'look-out' crew, a snorkel buddy may not always be available and you may be required to snorkel alone and to wear floatation equipment.

Room Types Available are:
<b>Ocean View Deluxe</b>
Located on the top deck with internal stairwell access to the main deck, as well as external access to the top deck and dive deck, the Ocean View Deluxe Cabin boats a 10.5m˛ area with 3 large windows overlooking the starboard side of the vessel.

A comfy double bed will ensure you are well rest for a full day of diving. The room features bedside tables, wardrobe and 26" flat screen TV.

The cabin is fully air-conditioned and has its own private bathroom.

Double or Sole occupancy only.

<b>Ocean View Standard</b>
Ocean View cabin is located on the top deck with internal stairwell access to the main deck, as well as external access to the top deck and dive deck.

As the name suggests, you will enjoy stunning views from this air conditioned 7.2m˛ cabin, which contains a double bed, private bathroom, a wardrobe and 26” flat screen TV.

Double or Sole Occupancy only.

<b>Stateroom</b>


The largest of all cabins onboard the vessel, The Stateroom cabin is located in a private area on the lower deck, close to the dive deck and dining saloon.

Fully air-conditioned, this spacious 12m˛ cabin contains a queen size bed, a private bathroom, extra shelving, wardrobe, bedside tables and 26" flat screen TV.

Double or Sole Occupancy only: no twin share option available.

<b>Standard Double/Twin</b>
Spirit of Freedom has seven standard double or twin share cabins. Five of these cabins contain a double bed with a single bed over the top, bunk style. One cabin contains just a double bed and one cabin has two single beds.

These cabins are all located on the lower deck, with easy access to the main deck and have an average area of 10m˛ square metres in area.

Fully air-conditioned, the cabins have an ensuite bathroom and also contain a wardrobe, personal reading light and a bedside table.

Please advise your preference for double or twin share when placing your booking. Sole occupancy also available.

<b>Quad Share</b>
Located midships on the lower deck, the quad share cabin containing four single beds, bunk style and is a great options for groups or families as you explore the Great Barrier Reef on your epic dive adventure.

This 9m˛ cabin has easy access to the main deck and includes a private ensuite bathroom and personal reading lights for each bed.

The cabin is fully air-conditioned and also contains a wardrobe, as well as storage under the bottom two bunks.
(Days 10 to 11) - 1 Night Accommodation in Beautiful Cairns
Enjoy 1 night at your 4-Star CAIRNS accommodation.

Nestled in the tropical paradise of Cairns, this remarkable hotel captivates guests with its warm hospitality, exceptional service, and breathtaking views. The accommodations offer a harmonious blend of comfort and style, complemented by the hotel's prime location near dining, shopping, and cultural attractions. From the inviting restaurant to the attentive staff, every aspect ensures an unforgettable stay. Discover a tranquil oasis in Cairns that promises cherished memories for discerning travelers.
 
<b>Hotel Amenities</b>
Free Wi-Fi, Swimming Pool, 24-hr Reception, Luggage Storage, Bar, Restaurant, Paid Parking, Room Service  
 
<b> Preferred Room</b>
Standard Room - 1 King or 2 Singles - Room Features: Mini Fridge ; Private Balcony ; Air Conditioning ; Shower Amenities ; Hairdryer ; Safe ; Smart TV.
 
<b>Room Upgrades</b>
Past T12-15 (Other Upgraded Room Types)
- Executive Room - 1 King or 2 Singles - Room Features: Mini Fridge ; Private Balcony ; Air Conditioning ; Shower Amenities ; Hairdryer ; Safe ; Esplanade, Trinity Inlet, or Ocean Views ; Flat Screen TV.
- Deluxe - 1 King or 2 Singles - Room Features: Mini Fridge ; Private Balcony ; Air Conditioning ; Shower Amenities ; Hairdryer ; Safe ; Flat Screen TV.
- Tropical Luxe - 1 King or 2 Singles - Room Features: Mini Fridge ; Same level as the pool deck ; Air Conditioning ; Shower Amenities ; Hairdryer ; Safe ; Pod coffee machine ; 42-inch Flat Screen TV.
- Tropical Luxe Premium - 1 King or 2 Singles - Room Features: Mini Fridge ; Pod Coffee Machine ; Air Conditioning ; Shower Amenities ; Luxury skincare & Hairdryer ; Safe ; Located on Levels 2 & 3 ; Washer & Dryer ; 50-inch Flat Screen TV ; Two-person bath.
 
<b>Need to know</b>
Hotel subject to availability. If this hotel is not available, a similar hotel will be substituted. Room booked will be preferred unless otherwise listed on your quote.
Insiders Tip: Visit The Esplanade
Experience the leisurely atmosphere at the playground for locals and tourists alike at The Esplanade in Cairns!

With so many activities available The Esplanade has always been a focal point for this city. This is a place that literally has everything! Take a stroll and do some bird watching on the boardwalk but as you enjoy the views don't forget to stop off at Foreshore Promenade for a bite to eat at the many available restaurants. Access to The Lagoon is easy here which is set overlooking the Barrier Reef and Trinity inlet and features all year free swimming where you can take a dip in this filtered saltwater lagoon. Let the kids can play in the sandy edges and in the shallow waters while you lounge on the semi-shaded timber decks. For the kids, don't miss out on the Trinity Bay foreshore playground "Muddy" with equipment for all ages. For the older kids, stop off at the Skate Park to see some skaters and BMXers in action! Whether you decide to take a morning jog, fly a kite or just relax in the large grassy areas for some lunch you will surely enjoy the tropical lifestyle!

If you happen to be in Cairns on a Saturday be sure to check out the Weekend Markets which feature only locally made arts and crafts, clothing and much more. While you're there listen out for the live music and fun street characters. The market gets into full swing on the promenade (just by the lagoon) every Saturday between 8am - 4pm.

Lagoon Hours: All Year, 6am-9pm
Closed Wednesdays until midday for maintenance
(Day 11) - Shuttle Transfer - Cairns Accommodation to Cairns Airport
Travel by shuttle from your Cairns vacation accommodation to the Airport in Cairns, Australia.

<b>Need to Know</b>
Luggage Restrictions: 1 checked bag and 1 hand luggage is free of charge per person in the shuttle. Additional luggage is 10$ each. Strollers are free. Bikes need to be in a bike bag. Fishing rods need to be broken down and in a container.
(Day 11 cont) - Australian Domestic Flight - Cairns to Alice Springs
Travel within Australia by domestic air from Cairns to Alice Springs.

(Day 11 cont) - Shuttle Transfer, Alice Springs Airport to Accommodation
Travel by shuttle from the Airport to your vacation accommodation in Alice Springs, Australia.

(Days 11 to 12) - 1 Night Accommodation in Alice Springs
Travel to your accommodation in the heart of Australia and the Outback, Alice Springs, where you will be staying whilst on vacation for 1 night.

Alice Springs, Australia's Oasis, is also known as the capital of the Outback and the most romantic country town in the world. It's where the Arrernte Aboriginal tribal group has lived for 20,000 years and where pioneer men and women gave "tough" a new meaning. Whilst on your vacation, take advantage of the many attractions available in Alice Springs. Visit the Royal Flying Doctor Service, Alice Springs School of the Air, Central Australian Aviation Museum, the Alice Springs Reptile Centre, Alice Springs Telegraph Station, Old Stuart Town Gaol. Travel by coach or car to explore the unique scenery of Australia's Outback and its magnificent monolith - Uluru.
(Day 12) - Deluxe Coach Tour - Alice Springs to Ayers Rock
Travel from Alice Springs to Uluru (Ayers Rock) aboard a luxury coach.

Getting to Uluru from Alice Springs is an easy, scenic ride through Australia's red outback. Take in the rugged desert landscapes, passing through the reds and oranges of the MacDonnell Ranges.

While traveling through this remote country, your friendly Driver/Guide will share informative and entertaining commentary. Learn about the natural and geological history of the region. Hear about the traditional customs and stories of the local Aboriginal people, as well as the unique Australian desert flora and fauna. Learn about native animals such as the Perentie monitor lizard, the thorny devil and the red kangaroo.

There is time for a stop at a local Roadhouse for a quick break then view flat-topped Atila (Mt Conner) in the distance before arriving at Ayers Rock Resort rested, relaxed and ready to explore the amazing World Heritage-listed Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park.

<b>Operates</b> Daily from 7:00am from Alice Springs. Arrives at Uluru at 1:00pm.

<b>Need to Know</b> Bring sunglasses, a hat, water bottle and sunscreen. Wear warm layers in cooler months.

<b>Inclusions</b> Experienced driver/guide. Comprehensive commentary. Travel in an air-conditioned luxury bus.
(Days 12 to 14) - 2 Nights Accommodation in Ayers Rock
Ayers Rock, Australia Travel to your accommodation in the heart of Australia, the Red Centre, where you will be staying whilst on vacation for 2 nights.

Your 4 1/2 Star vacation accommodation is centrally located to all resorts and Australia touring facilities and offers a range of stylish accommodations, from shaded poolside rooms to the magnificent deluxe rooms overlooking the desert. You can relax from your travel in the comfort of your own private balcony or courtyard, or unwind in the hotel's refreshing pool, sipping cocktails. It's only a short stroll to the resorts numerous lookouts, where you can view what is arguably Australia's best sunset. Its spectacular display of colours across the face of Uluru and the surrounding desert turns your vacation into a memorable event.

Airport shuttle transfers included.
(Days 12 to 14) - Tour Pass - Uluru Sunrise and Sunset
Witness the stunning Uluru sunrise and sunset, venture out on the Walpa Gorge walk at Kata Tjuta and discover the fascinating stories of Uluru on a guided base tour.

<b>Sunset/Afternoon - Day One</b>

Talk a short walk at the base of Uluru with your Driver Guide and view ancient paintings and hear stories of traditional Anangu life.

Then head off to the Uluru sunset viewing area. On arrival you'll be served from a selection of Australian wines and nibbles.

You can just sit and relax or stroll around the area to find your own personal space to watch an amazing outback sunset.

<b>Sunrise/Morning - Day Two</b>
The early rise is well worth it as you experience the two major landmarks in Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park.

Start with an amazing sunrise at Talinguru Nyakunytjaku, the Uluru sunrise viewing area. Afterwards, on the 45 kms drive to Kata Tjuta your Driver Guide will provide you with an historical overview of the National Park.

The walk through the sheer walls of Walpa Gorge won’t disappoint as you’re led into a world of rare plant species and lush evergreen scrubs.

<b>Operates</b>
Daily
Morning tour pick-ups are 1.5 hours before sunrise and returns approximately 11:00 - 11:30am, lasting approximately 5 hours (seasonal). Afternoon tour pick-ups are 2:30pm - 3:00pm and returns half an hour after sunset, lasting approximately 5 hours (seasonal).

<b>Need to Know</b>
Full breakfast is not provided. Bringing snacks for breakfast is recommended. Please wear closed walking shoes and warm layers in cooler months. Bring your own water bottle, sunglasses, hat and sunscreen.

<b>Includes:</b>
Afternoon tour:
- Wine and canapes at sunset
Morning tour:
- Tea, coffee and cookies at sunrise and snacks.
- National Park Fee

<b>Upgrades</b>
Add a BBQ dinner with your Uluru sunset tour. Both tours can be done in one day if preferred.

Photo: Tourism NT
Optional Day Tour (Not Included) - Sounds of Silence Dinner
This dining experience offers the best of the Red Centre distilled into four magical hours under the sparkling outback sky.

You will begin with canapes and chilled sparkling wine upon a dune-top overlooking the Ulutu-Kata Tjuta National Park. As the sun sets and darkness falls, listen to the sound of a didgeridoo and join your table of fellow travelers for an unforgettable dining experience.

Your attentive staff will offer a selection of Australian wine and beer while the first course is served at your table. As the night sky twinkles to life, you will be welcomed to an interactive chef’s station where you will be served your choice from a freshly prepared, bush tucker inspired menu incorporating native bush ingredients.

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.

The tour finishes with a relaxing ride back to your accommodation.

<b>Operates</b>
Daily
Departs 1 hour prior to sunset, Returns 4.5 hours later (approx.)
Tour operates Christmas Day for an additional cost

<b>Includes</b>
- Return transfers to Ayers Rock accommodation
- Outback style canapes
- A three-course bush tucker inspired buffet
- Didgeridoo performance
- Guided tour of the night sky

<b>Need to Know</b>
- Children 9 and under are not permitted
- Very limited wheelchair accessibility. Assistance available on request
- Child strollers are not allowed
- Please wear long pants and toe-covered shoes
- Tour may be changed or cancelled due to weather or other unforeseen circumstances
- This experience can be catered to your dietary needs. Please advise of any special dietary requirements when completing your Traveler Information Form.

<b>Upgrades</b>
Field of Light Dinner
(Day 14 cont) - Australian Domestic Flight - Ayers Rock to Melbourne
Travel within Australia by domestic air from the Red Centre at Ayers Rock to Melbourne.

(Days 14 to 19) - Car Hire: Pickup: Melbourne Airport Dropoff: Adelaide Airport
Rental Car in Australia Discover Australia as you travel by rental car for five days.

As part of your vacation self-drive Australia and explore our stunning landscapes, coastlines, regional towns and wildlife. Stop and meet the locals, maybe enjoy a counter meal at a local Aussie pub, or relax on the beach while sampling some takeaway fish & chips from the local deli or servo. During one of your rest stops try to spot a kangaroo, emu or even a Koala in the wild.

Please bring a valid American drivers license with you and be aware that the Australians drives on the left hand side of the road.

Base rate only paid by About Australia. GPS, Insurance, Premium Location Surcharge, Fuel and Fees to driver's credit card.
(Days 14 to 19) - Self Drive: Great Ocean Road
Self Drive, Great Ocean Road, Australia Great Ocean Road (Victoria) through to Adelaide (South Australia) via Kangaroo Island: Self Drive Tour

DAY 1: GREAT OCEAN ROAD SELF DRIVE TOUR
Today collect your hire car and start your self drive tour of the Great Ocean Road. Pass through Geelong and maybe stop at Torquay for refreshments. Enjoy views of sweeping beaches, sleepy coastal resorts and spectacular cliffsides as you wind along the coastline road. Stop at Apollo Bay for your overnight accommodation with the afternoon at leisure.

Insider's Tip: Geelong & Great Ocean Road Information Centre - There are 12 Accreditied Visitor Information Centres along Great Ocean Road. The Geelong Centre (on the outskirts of town on Princess Highway) is a great place to stop for everything you need for the GOR region. Stop by to pick up maps, vistors' guides, magazines or tips from the knowledgeable locals. (All visitor information centres are open 7 days a week from 9am-5pm)

DAY 2: THE GREAT OCEAN ROAD.
Continue along the road to Otway National Park, an abundance of ferns and mosses dwarfed by giant gum trees. Continue towards Port Campbell National Park. View the famous Twelve Apostles and Loch Ard. Stop in Port Campbell for refreshments and continue to the remnants of London Bridge. Continue on to Portland and stay overnight in Mount Gambier (South Australia). View Mt Gambier's Blue Lake, famous for its vivid blue colour during summer months.

DAY 3: THE RIVERLAND
From Mt Gambier continue onto Tailem Bend and see Old Tailem Town a re-creation of a pioneer village with many old buildings. Continue to Strathalbyn and onto Victor Harbor a quaint seaside town where we recommend you stay overnight.

DAYS 4, 5 and 6: KANGAROO ISLAND

Rise for breakfast then drive to the Sealink Ferry terminal where you will load your car on the ferry heading directly to Kangaroo Island. Kangaroo Island is ideal to explore in the comfort of your own car. The scenery and wildlife are spectacular and with such a small human population on such a large island.

Over 2 days explore Kangaroo Island at your leisure. The driving is easy there are no traffic lights but please take care to avoid the wildlife if driving at dawn and dusk. Take in the spectacular coastal scenery, virgin bushland and National parks.

On day 4 check in 30 minutes prior to your pre-booked ferry departure time from Cape Jervis for a 45 minute ferry ride. After arrival drive to your hotel and check-in for a 2 night stay.

On day 6 check in 30 minutes prior to you pre-booked ferry departure from Kangaroo Island to Cape Jervis. After arrival make your way to Adelaide (approximately 1.5 hour drive).
(Days 14 to 17) - Self Drive Along the Great Ocean Road
Your vacation accommodation as per your own arrangement.

(Days 17 & 19) - Ferry Transfers, Cape Jervis to Kangaroo Island & Return
Kangaroo Island, Australia Ferry Transfer with rental vehicle from Cape Jervis to Penneshaw and return.

(Days 17 to 19) - 2 Nights Accommodation on Kangaroo Island
Travel to your accommodation on Kangaroo Island, Australia, where you will be staying whilst on vacation for 2 nights.

Your vacation accommodation has just 27 rooms. Why not take some time out and laze away the hours by our sparkling solar heated pool, spa and sauna. Wander through our gardens at sunset and you will probably meet one of the little penguins that waddle up from the beach for a visit. The Kangaroo Island vacation accommodation is a stylish and very welcoming property and is the perfect base for you to enjoy all the natural beauty that Kangaroo Island has to offer. Organise adventures with the friendly and professional staff that know and love the Island. Whether it is deep sea fishing, 4WD wilderness tour, or horse riding, it is up to you. Or what about a walking tour, food tour, swimming, snorkeling, diving, climbing and of course there are wonderful national Parks to explore. In fact, everything the Island has to offer is just a short drive away.

(Day 19) - Australian Domestic Flight - Adelaide to Sydney
Travel within Australia by domestic air from Adelaide to Sydney

(Day 19 cont) - Shuttle Transfer - Sydney Airport to Sydney Accommodation
Sydney, Australia Travel by shuttle from the Airport to your vacation accommodation in Sydney, Australia.

Travel via shuttle to your vacation accommodation in Sydney, Australia.
(Days 19 to 22) - 3 Nights Accommodation in Sydney
Travel to your accommodation in Sydney, Australia, where you will be staying whilst on vacation for 3 nights in your studio room apartment.

Just 30 minutes from Sydney Airport, your accommodation is conveniently located between Darling Harbour and the Sydney CBD.

The friendly staff at your accommodation can attend to your every need with 24 hour guest reception. Enjoy a scrumptious breakfast at their signature restaurant.

Relax in a stylish and comfortable haven whilst being in close proximity to shopping at Westfield's Pitt St Mall and Darling Harbour. Don't forget to take a stroll down Pitt St towards Circular Quay to take in more of Sydney's world famous sites- like the Sydney Opera House and Sydney Harbour Bridge.
Insiders Tip: Hop on the Sydney Explorer Bus
Experience all the excitement of Sydney, Australia's famous harbour city, and the capital of NSW with the Big Bus Sydney and Bondi Explorer - Sydney's only Hop-On Hop-Off tourist bus service.

The Sydney and Bondi Tours are included with this pass. The Sydney tour features 23 stops and the Bondi tour features 11 stops.

As well as Sydney’s glorious harbour and stunning beaches the city offers a multi cultural lifestyle, exuberant festivals and events, a dynamic food scene and a striking cityscape of modern and colonial architecture.

Don’t miss a thing aboard this open-top double-decker bus tours with 34 stops in Sydney and Bondi Beach. Plan your own itinerary and visit the landmarks and attractions at your own pace. Buses run frequently so rejoining the tour is easy! Plus, you'll receive a booklet with travel information, detailed maps, discount vouchers and much more!

Be sure to bring your camera to capture all the excitement!

<b>Operates</b>
Daily
9:00am to 4:00pm

<b>Includes</b>
- Hop on Hop off tour
- Sydney & Bondi Beach routes
- 1-day validity
- Up to 34 stops
- Digital commentary
- Free earphones onboard
- Free wifi

<b>Need to Know</b>
Fully flexible tour. Please bring money for lunch.

<b>Upgrades</b>
2-Day Explorer w/Cruise
(Day 20) - Day Tour - Sydney Opera House - 1 Hour
On your vacation, participate in an inspiring tour of the Sydney Opera House.

<a href="//youtu.be/C2UPo8f7EpE" target="_blank"><img src="//abt-aus-images.s3.amazonaws.com/images/Sydney-Opera-House-Tour-Australia.jpg" width="350" height="197" class="alignleft"></a>

This one hour tour outlines the intricate and controversial history of the Sydney Opera House along with details of the unique design of this architectural masterpiece. You will visit a number of the six performance venues, including the magnificent wood paneled Concert Hall and the Opera Theatre as well as the new Utzon room. You will also visit the glass enclosed northern foyer areas which boast spectacular views of Sydney Harbour - a perfect photo opportunity.

<b>Operates</b>
Daily, Hourly 9am to 5pm
Does not operate Good Friday, Christmas, New Year's Eve or Valentine's Day

<b>Includes</b>
One hour guided experience.

<b>Need to Know</b>
- This tour has 300+ stairs - Low Impact.
- It is strongly encouraged that you leave bags at your hotel and avoid bringing any large items to the Opera House (anything larger than an 8x10" sheet of paper). No luggage or large bags accepted.
- Videoing is not allowed.
- There are plenty of photo opportunities - your tour guide will advise you if photos are not to be taken at any point.

<b>Upgrades</b>
-Add a lunch, dinner or performance to your tour.
-Upgrade your experience with a private, backstage, or architectural tour.
Insiders Tip: Blu Bar 36 in the Shangri-la Hotel
Blu Bar 36 is located high above the city on level 36 of the Shangri-La Hotel.

<a href="//youtu.be/H7QXyZvdfgU" target="_blank"><img src="//abt-aus-images.s3.amazonaws.com/images/Blu-Bar-36-Shangri-La-Hotel-Sydney-Australia.jpg" width="350" height="197" class="alignleft"></a>

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A New York inspired design the Blu Bar 36 is located high above the city on level 36 of the Shangri-La. The Blu Horizon Bar boasts the best views in Sydney incorporating stunning Blue Mountain sunsets, Opera House, harbour bridge, northern suburbs and of course the harbour.

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Sleek, sophisticated and sexy summarises the Blu Horizon Bar with bragging rights guaranteed. Be sure and notice the $10,000.00 drink on the menu.

Dress Code: Smart casual
(Day 21) - Free Day to Explore Vibrant Sydney
Sydney, Australia With Sydney at your fingertips, take the chance to explore the Darling Harbour area at your leisure, which is a modern collection of Shopping Malls, Parkland, Restaurants and Harbour Front activities.

Walk to Circular Quay and catch a ferry to our wonderful harbour-side Taronga Park Zoo, or take the 30 minute ferry ride to Manly Beach, Sydney's premier beach resort. Here you can enjoy the laid back beach culture as well as many festivals and events. If you prefer to stay closer to downtown Sydney, Bondi Beach is approximately a 10 minute train ride and is one of Australia's most famous and iconic beaches. Save some time to take a beach walk from Bondi Beach to Bronte Beach, it's known to be a true highlight. If visiting on a weekend then go to the Rocks Market and shop for local Arts, Crafts & unique Australian Souvenirs.
Insiders Tip: Pylon Museum - Bridgeclimb Compliment/Alternative
Pylon Museum, Sydney, Australia See the fantastic views of the city, the harbour and the world famous icon - the Sydney Harbour Bridge! This is a wonderful alternative if you do not wish to climb the bridge.

Access is via the pedestrian pathway on the Eastern side of the Bridge from the city side (use the Bridge Stairs in Cumberland Street, The Rocks). There are 200 stairs to the Lookout, but on the way up there are 3 levels of exhibits where you will discover the history and construction of the Bridge, the men who built it, and the vision of JJC Bradfield, chief engineer

At the end of (or even before) your visit to the Museum, enjoy the scenery and walk across the Sydney Harbour Bridge. The walk to the North side of Sydney will take approximately 15-20 minutes from the Pylon.

Costs are (AUD) $15.00 ages over 13, $8.50 ages 5-12 and under 4 Free. Open Daily 10-5 (Closed Christmas)
Optional Day Tour (Not Included) - Sydney Harbour Bridgeclimb Adventure - 3 Hours
This evening experience an adventure of a lifetime by climbing the famous Coathanger - Sydney Harbour Bridge.

<a href="//youtu.be/vNBOOE8Lydk" target="_blank"><img src="//abt-aus-images.s3.amazonaws.com/images/Sydney-Harbour-Bridgeclimb-Australia.jpg" width="350" height="197" class="alignleft"></a>

Achieve exhilaration and personal satisfaction as you climb the Sydney Harbour Bridge. For approximately two hours you, along with 11 other eager climbers and a climb guide, weave through catwalks, climb up ladders and then arrive at the most spectacular point of all - the upper arch climb. The steady incline to the upper arch leaves you free to focus your attention on your Sydney experience, with opportunities for 360 degree views of Sydney, including east to the ocean, west to the mountains and the harbour city surrounds. It is at this point that you not only have a bird's eye view of the beautiful Sydney Harbour and the city, but have the exhilaration of the truly rewarding experience of reaching the top to the Harbour Bridge in Sydney, Australia. When you reach the top you will have a sense of achievement that you'll remember forever - you've conquered an Australian icon recognised the world over! No other Sydney tourist attraction can give you this feeling of standing at the top of the world, with the Harbour spread before you. All climbers will be issued a complimentary photograph of their climb group.

Climb time is around Twilight.
Insiders Tip: Visit the Historic Rocks District
Located on the Harbour just a stroll away from the Opera House and the Harbour Bridge is the place where Sydney itself began, The Rocks!

<a href="//youtu.be/5usMxoE1s_U" target="_blank"><img src="//abt-aus-images.s3.amazonaws.com/images/Insiders-Tip-The-Rocks-Sydney.jpg" width="350" height="197" class="alignleft"></a>

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Amidst the hustle and bustle of the Business District, this unique village features a centre with more than 70 shops, boutiques and galleries with everything from hand-made puppets, vintage clothing and accessories, antiques, art supplies, jewelry and some of Australia's finest arts and crafts.

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If hunger takes over there are a myriad of places to eat, from some of the finest restaurants to quaint cafes and casual eateries with many offering stunning views of the Opera House and Harbour Bridge. If quenching a thirst is what you're after don't forget to stop off at one of the 13 Heritage pubs serving local wines and beers!

On Saturdays and Sundays, be sure to check out the market held at the northern end of George Street. Perfect for gifts and souvenir shopping, it has more than 150 stalls selling quality crafts, home wares, jewelry and Australian-designed goods, all under a unique sail-like canopy.

With the transport to The Rocks serviced by the Explorer and just a five minute walk from the Circle Quay it is easy to get here. The Sydney Visitors Centre on the corner of Argyle & Playfair Streets at The Rocks: open 9.30am - 5.30pm every day of the year (except Christmas Day and Good Friday). Opening hours may vary on some public holidays.

Photo Credit: Tourism New South Wales
Optional Day Tour (Not Included) - Surf Lesson on Bondi Beach
Surf Lesson with Private Instructor On your vacation plunge into the Pacific Ocean and try surfing at Bondi Beach in Sydney, Australia.

<a href="//youtu.be/QNZXwdTy4aI" target="_blank"><img src="//abt-aus-images.s3.amazonaws.com/images/Surfing-Lessons-at-Bondi-Beach-Sydney-Australia.jpg" width="350" height="197" class="alignleft"></a>

Enjoy the thrill of surfing beautiful Bondi Beach with your own personal instructor. There is no better way to advance your surfing skills. Private lessons are tailored specifically to meet all your needs.

<b>Includes</b>
-Surfboard
-Wetsuit
-Rash vest
-Sunscreen
-Zinc

<b>Need to Know</b>
-Please bring swimsuit and towel.
-One on one attention needed for children under 7. -May incur surcharge if booked on a Queensland Public Holiday.
-Can be booked for 1 - 5 people.
Optional Day Tour (Not Included) - Hunter Valley Wineries
Explore the fertile Hunter Valley and taste delicious food and awardwinning wines. Enjoy private vineyard inspections and learn of the winemaking process. Spend time strolling in the vineyards, purchase some wine or simply enjoy the beautiful Australian countryside.

Admire the magnificent views of the Hawkesbury River on your drive through the Central Coast. The Hunter Valley is home to Australia’s oldest wine-producing region and owes its fame to world-class viticulturists and fertile soils.

Enjoy a private wine tasting experience at Leogate Estate Wines, which produces trophy-winning wines such as Chardonnay, Semillon and Shiraz, and learn of local wine-making techniques. Visit Hunter Valley Resort, where you can walk among the vines and learn about the wine-making process and the key role the resort plays in this region.

Enjoy lunch made with local produce, while you sample some of the area’s best wines. You’ll also have the chance to purchase a beer tasting paddle from the on-site brewery. The McGuigan family are respected pioneers of the industry and at their cellar door you’ll be greeted warmly and welcomed to a tasting of their fine wines.

Finish the day at Roche Estate, where you’ll have free time to explore the shops offering Australian cheeses at the Smelly Cheese Shop and gourmet delights plus coffee, gelato, craft beer and cellar doors (own expense).

<b>Operates</b>

Daily

<b>Times</b>

Sydney CBD hotel Pick-up 7:45 - 8:00am & Return 6:30pm (approximate times)
 
<b>Inclusions</b>

- 3 Wine Tastings
- Lunch
- Experienced Driver Guide
- Comprehensive commentary
- Travel in an air-conditioned coach

<b>Upgrades</b>

Upgrade to a Small Group Luxury Tour
Optional Day Tour (Not Included) - Blue Mountains and Australian Wildlife Day Tour - Full Day
The Blue Mountains Deluxe Day is a real journey into the heart of a unique World Heritage Region. From temperate rainforests to towering sandstone escarpments, you'll see and experience it all. Let the landscape work its wonders and become part of you for a lifetime.

<p></p>Upon departing from the city, you will travel directly to the Blue Mountains and your first stop of the day is at Calmsley Hill Farm a working farm also home to Kangaroo, Emu, Wombat and Koala. Enjoy morning tea and time to wander at leisure.

From Calmsley Hill you will continue to ascend the Blue Mountains via the highway. Visit one of a range of stunning outlooks of the Jamison Valley seeing beautiful vistas. Where possible this will be away from the crowds of tours that visit the mountains each day with other operators, thus you will have the opportunity to enjoy a stress and hurry free environment taking in the views and information imparted by your guide.

Continuing on you will arrive at Eaglehawk Lookout, a remote lookout points away from the crowds for views of the famous 3 Sisters. Whilst the Blue Mountains features so much more than this natural attraction you can't help but admire the unquestionable beauty of this amazing rock formation. The character of the Three Sisters changes throughout the day and throughout the seasons as the sunlight brings out the magnificent colors. Here your guide will discuss the legends behind this famous rock formation and time available for you to take some great photos.

Next you will be taken around the mountain towards the village of Blackheath and our lunch venue the Boiler House Cafe. Here in this relaxed venue with stunning views, you can enjoy a 2-course lunch with tea or coffee. All diets are catered for (excluding Kosher Meals). Please note that beverages can be purchased at your own expense from the Bar.

The afternoon is spent visiting a selection of lookouts. Once you clap your eyes on the view from Govetts Leap you'll know why it's one of the most famous lookouts in Australia. The magnificent waterfall drops a whopping 180m to the base of the cliff. If you're not mesmerized by the dancing waves of water spray, you'll be transfixed by the sweeping views down the valley to the Grose Wilderness.

Then take a brief stop to enjoy a glass of sparkling wine or orange juice at the delightful Mt Tomah Botanic Gardens, where you can enjoy the sweeping views across to Sydney before traveling down the Bells Line of Road to arrive back at your hotel approximately 4:30pm.

<b>Operates</b>

Daily.

<b>Need to Know</b>

This is a specialized small group tour with a maximum group size of 17 passengers.
Minimum of 2 guests required for tour departure.

<b>Times</b>

Pick-up from Sydney CBD hotel between: 7:00am - 7:30am.
Drop-off at Sydney CBD hotel between: 4:30pm - 5:00pm.
 
<b>Inclusions</b>

- Professional Guide
- Hotel pickup & drop off from Sydney CBD
- Small group touring
- Morning tea
- National Park Fees
- 2-Course Lunch (Beverages with meals are not included)
- Glass of Sparkling Wine
- Mt Tomah visit

<b>Upgrades</b>

Private Touring
(Day 22) - Shuttle Transfer - Sydney Accommodation to Sydney Airport
Sydney, Australia Travel by shuttle from your vacation accommodation in Sydney, Australia, to the Airport.

(Day 22 cont) - International Flight - Sydney, Australia to Los Angeles
From Australia to USA Depart Sydney from the International Airport and fly to Los Angeles. Note: You will be traveling back across the International Date line so you will gain a day. You actually arrive in the USA on the same day you leave Australia.

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[DiveSOF16] Dive Australia & Tour Kangaroo Island

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