Coach Breaks
Discover Australia

Discover Australia 2017

What's Included
16 nights' accommodation with 16 breakfasts, 3 lunches and 9 dinners
Air-conditioned coach travel
Porterage at all hotels
Flights to Melbourne and returning from Sydney
All airport taxes and airport transfers in Melbourne and Sydney
Excursions and visits as described in the itinerary

20 Day Itinerary

IMPORTANT NOTE: Visa/ETA is required prior to travelling, at a cost of approximately $20. Please call for more details.

Days 1 & 2

Fly from London to Australia.

Day 3 - Arrival in Melbourne

On arrival in Melbourne, you will be transferred by private touring coach to your hotel for a four-night stay. You'll have time to unpack, settle in and acclimatize to the Australian time zone. The rest of the day is at leisure and allows you time to explore. Maybe head to Southbank and the Crown Casino Complex, which are within easy walking distance over the Yarra River via a pedestrian bridge.

Day 4 - Melbourne Sightseeing

Following a hearty breakfast, join an introductory tour of the city. Within the city centre there are many fine buildings, such as Government House, the Old Treasury Building and the Exhibition Building, built for the Great Exhibition of 1880. Melbourne also has many beautiful gardens within easy reach of the city. We take a drive past the famous Melbourne Cricket Ground and Rod Laver Arena (where the Australian Open Tennis is played each year), the parklands and the War Memorial, the stately old buildings in town and the bold architecture of Federation Square in the heart of Melbourne. We also visit the Eureka Skydeck – the highest public vantage point in the Southern Hemisphere. Take in amazing 360º views over the city and Port Phillip Bay, thanks to the observation deck's floor-to-ceiling windows. The rest of the day is free for personal sightseeing, or you can join a visit to the Queen Victoria Markets for an hour or two of retail therapy. Known locally as Vic Market or Queen Vic, this open-air market is the heart and soul of Melbourne, where you can eat, shop and explore, or just find a seat and soak up the atmosphere. Dinner this evening is on board the Colonial Tramcar Restaurant, a beautifully restored Melbourne tram which is now a 'restaurant on wheels'. This is an excellent way to see the sights of the city as you enjoy fine cuisine and the best of Australian wines, along with a cosy atmosphere and friendly service. Dining aboard the Colonial Tramcar Restaurant is not only a culinary delight, but also a trip into a little piece of Victoria's history – a unique and unforgettable experience.

  • Included meals: Breakfast, Dinner

Day 5 - The Dandenongs, Phillip Island and Penguin Parade

This morning, we head for the hills – literally – as we travel through the eastern suburbs to The Dandenong Ranges. Take a ride through the lush mountainside from Belgrave on the historic 'Puffing Billy' steam train, through picturesque surroundings and stunning scenery. We disembark at Emerald, where our coach will be waiting to take us to Phillip Island, known for its stunning white beaches and iconic wildlife. Once on the island, we visit the Nobbies Centre. Overlooking the waters of Bass Strait, the Nobbies Centre showcases Australian fur seals and the unique marine life in Australia's southern oceans. After dinner in Cowes, the main town on the island, we head to the Penguin Parade, part of the Phillip Island Nature Park. The area is a reserve designed to protect and promote awareness of Little Penguin. At sunset, the penguins cross Summerland Beach to return to their sand dune burrows after a day's fishing. To see them come out of the surf in small groups and waddle up the beach is an absolutely fascinating spectacle. This unique 'parade' can be experienced from environmentally friendly observation boardwalks and viewing stands. It will be quite late by the time we return to Melbourne, after another amazing day.

  • Included meals: Breakfast, Dinner

Day 6 - Great Ocean Road

Today, we have a full day exploring one of Australia’s most spectacular coastal drives. Following an early breakfast, we travel west to Torquay, which is the start of the Great Ocean Road, and it’s here we commence our breathtaking drive. Built to honour the servicemen and women of World War One, the road extends more than 180 miles along some of the best coastal scenery Australia has to offer. We travel through the coastal town of Anglesea to the popular Victorian seaside village of Lorne, the first place to be declared an area of Special Significance and Natural Beauty by the Victorian Government. Cafés and boutiques line the main thoroughfare of the village, extending down to the beautiful sandy beach. From Lorne, we continue on to Apollo Bay, then leave the coast and wind our way through the slopes of the Otway Ranges and the Otway National Park, with its rugged coastlines, magnificent waterfalls and sandy beaches. After lunch we continue along a section of the Port Campbell National Park known as the 'Shipwreck Coast'. We stop to see the famous Twelve Apostles, towering limestone stacks with wild waves crashing at their bases, as they dominate the coastline near Port Campbell. After sightseeing, we return to Melbourne where the evening is free for you to enjoy an evening meal independently.

  • Included meals: Breakfast, Lunch

Day 7 - Melbourne to Alice Springs

It's time for our next adventure, as we fly to Alice Springs where we spend two nights. A drive around 'The Alice' will help you get your bearings, stopping at ANZAC Hill for panoramic views of the town and the surrounding area, before visiting the Royal Flying Doctor Base (RFDS), which is also where you'll enjoy lunch. This is one of the largest and most comprehensive aero-medical organisations in the world. The Reverend John Flynn, the founder of the RFDS, has been brought back to life as a hologram to tell the story of the foundation of the service. Dinner tonight is in our hotel.

  • Included meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 8 - Alice Springs

This morning is a visit to the world’s largest classroom – The School of the Air. Here you'll be given an insight into this unique outback school which caters for the education of children in remote communities. We'll then visit the nearby Old Telegraph Station, the original Alice Springs, established in 1871 to relay messages between Darwin and Adelaide, and linking with an underwater cable network to London, it was the first real communication between Australia and England. After our visit, there will be be time for a stroll down Alice Springs' Todd Mall to purchase lunch and perhaps view some local artwork in one of the galleries. We return to our hotel this afternoon for some free time to relax before our special dinner this evening. At The Earth Sanctuary – a World Nature Centre at Quandong Homestead, just 15 minutes out of Alice Springs – you'll enjoy a mouth-watering bush BBQ with music and entertainment and experience the spirit of the outback through stories of the Aboriginal Dreamtime. You'll even learn how to cook a 'swagman’s damper'! After dinner, relax around the camp fire and take in the unforgettable night sky before heading back to the hotel.

  • Included meals: Breakfast, Dinner

Day 9 - Alice Springs to Ayers Rock

Today, we drive across the 'Outback' from Alice Springs to Uluru, otherwise known as Ayers Rock for a two-night stay in Yulara. We pass through the desert country, dotted with spinifex and desert oaks. Along the way, you'll also see Mount Conner, a distinctive flat-topped mountain often confused with Ayers Rock. This evening, we drive to the special viewing area known as the Ayers Rock Sunset Strip. The colour of the rock changes depending on the time of day and the weather, but in the evening – particularly at sunset – Ayers Rock puts on a remarkable light show as it changes colour from red to orange to lilac in a matter of minutes. Enjoy this special experience before returning to the resort for dinner.

  • Included meals: Breakfast, Dinner

Day 10 - Ayers Rock and Kata Tjuta National Park

It's an early start this morning as we head to the Ayers Rock sunrise viewing area to experience the first light of the day, before returning to the hotel for breakfast. We then transfer back to the rock for a guided walk. Learn about Aboriginal perceptions of Uluru, its powerful spiritual significance and how Anangu Traditional Owners and Rangers are looking after the park together. There are many fine examples of Anangu art to see along the way. We spend some time at the Cultural Centre and take a drive around the rock, stopping for photo opportunities, before returning to our hotel for an afternoon at leisure. Ayers Rock is located in the World Heritage listed Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park. It rises 348 metres from the desert floor and has a width of 9.4km. It’s the world’s most famous monolith, with at least two thirds of the rock lying beneath the surface. Dinner tonight will be very special and one of the highlights of our tour – you'll be dining out – way, way out! Shortly before sundown, we will be driven to a special location in the desert. To the sounds of a didgeridoo, you'll enjoy canapés and witness a spectacular sunset. The Sounds of Silence Dinner – winner of many tourism awards – is a magical four hour gourmet desert dinner eaten under the stars, a unique outback experience and a must-do, once-in-a-lifetime event for visitors. After a feast of Northern Territory delights, including barramundi, bush salads and classic Australian desserts, guests are treated to some of the world’s best stargazing with the assistance of a resident astronomer. Finally there’s tea or coffee before returning to the resort. What a memorable experience!

  • Included meals: Breakfast, Dinner

Day 11 - Ayers Rock to Cairns

Enjoy a leisurely start this morning before visiting the Olgas, called by the Aboriginal people, ‘Kata Tjuta’ or 'place of many domes'. There are excellent views from an observation deck and time for a walk. This afternoon, we fly to Cairns in tropical North Queensland where we stay for four nights. Dinner tonight is in our hotel.

  • Included meals: Breakfast, Dinner

Day 12 - Kuranda

Today we board the Kuranda Scenic Railway for a spectacular journey with stunning views. We pass the massive Barron Falls and Stoney Creek and cross steep ravines to the unique rainforest village of Kuranda. You’ll have time to explore this pretty village and purchase lunch before boarding the Skyrail Rainforest Cableway which will take us skimming over the pristine rainforest canopy in comfortable six-person gondola cabins. Stretching 7.5 kilometres, Skyrail is the world’s longest gondola cableway, providing spectacular panoramic views of the rainforest scenery. We stop off during our descent to visit a rainforest interpretative centre and for a short walk along a boardwalk through the rainforest. We return to our hotel where the evening is at leisure.

  • Included meals: Breakfast

Day 13 - Great Barrier Reef

Travelling via a modern, air-conditioned Catamaran, we arrive on Green Island, a beautiful 6000 year-old coral key just off the shore of Cairns, for an 'island experience'. This unique island, one of 300 sand keys on the Great Barrier Reef, is a nature lover's paradise and features an extraordinary reef and rainforest environment. Why not join a self-guided eco walk to discover more about the native trees and seeds on Green Island, and learn interesting facts about commonly found plants and birds. Later, we head to the Great Barrier Reef. An 'on board' reef presentation and a delicious buffet lunch complement the extensive facilities on The Outer Barrier Reef Pontoon, including a marine touch tank, fish feeding presentation, glass bottom boat coral viewing tour and a full range of snorkelling equipment. Diving and a short scenic flight by helicopter can be arranged at an additional cost. We return to Cairns late afternoon.

  • Included meals: Breakfast, Lunch

Day 14 - Free Time

Day at leisure. You may choose a day of relaxation or retail therapy, or one of the various day tours available: head north for the Daintree Wilderness and surround yourself with beautiful white sandy beaches, spectacular views, colourful butterflies, tree frogs, climbing vines and crystal clear streams; to the west is Atherton Tablelands, an area known for its wildlife, impressive waterfalls and stunning rainforest backdrops; or choose Paronella Park to the south, where you can explore the incredible castle and fountains, and admire the exotic plants and tropical palms and ferns in the park created by José Paronella. You might choose to visit Hartley's Crocodile Adventures, with over 2100 metres of timber boardwalks and pathways leading you through woodlands and rainforest where you can see an array of wildlife, including koalas, kangaroos, tropical birds, reptiles and insects, and take a boat cruise to see crocodiles and more reptiles, mammals and birds. Or, you may choose to head to Port Douglas. Favoured by A-list celebrities as the place to get away, the town is a place where food, wine and culture are appreciated. Enjoy a swim here at beautiful Four Mile Beach, a pristine strip of palm-fringed, white sand, or wander down the main street, a great place for shopping, wining and dining. There are so many ways to spend your free day – the choice is yours!

  • Included meals: Breakfast

Day 15 - Cairns to Sydney

We fly to Sydney, then transfer to our city hotel for a four-night stay. We dine in style tonight, with an unforgettable dinner cruise on Sydney Harbour, possibly one of the most exciting and beautiful harbours in the world. Relax and take in the sights of the harbour, the bridge and the beautifully-lit Opera House at night as you enjoy a wonderful cooked meal in a superb atmosphere. What a way to start the final part of our tour!

  • Included meals: Breakfast, Dinner

Day 16 - Exploring Sydney

Sydney is one of the most vibrant and exciting cities on earth. Its harbour, beaches and warm, sunny climate combine to create a relaxed, outdoor lifestyle. This morning's sightseeing tour will take in the harbour and surrounding beaches, which provide some of the most picturesque scenery in Australia. We visit the historic area known as 'The Rocks', a strip of land where European settlers came ashore in 1788. With its cobbled lanes, cosy cafés, museums, galleries and Australia's oldest pubs, The Rocks is a popular place for visitors and locals alike. We also visit Mrs. Macquarie’s Chair, a historic chair carved out of a sandstone ledge by convicts for Governor Macquarie’s wife so that she could watch the activity on the harbour and await the arrival of ships from England. This vantage point provides wonderful views and photo opportunities of the Sydney Opera House and the Harbour Bridge. From here, we make our way through the exclusive suburbs of Double Bay, a picturesque bayside village packed with exclusive boutiques, and via one of Sydney's most affluent and prestigious suburbs, Vaucluse, with its wealth of history and many heritage listed buildings. We continue to The Gap, a spectacular cliff on the southern side of the Sydney Harbour Heads with amazing views over the ocean. Next it's Bondi Beach, where you can stroll along the promenade, purchase lunch and watch the surfers ride the waves. Returning to town, we make our way to the iconic Sydney Opera House, where we'll meet our guide for a tour with a difference. In the late 1950s Danish architect, Jørn Utzon, designed what is now considered one of the greatest buildings of all time. The Sydney Opera House is also the youngest cultural site ever to be included on the World Heritage List. This will be a fascinating tour. The rest of the day and evening is free for some personal sightseeing and for you to enjoy the city's waterfront.

  • Included meals: Breakfast

Day 17 - Blue Mountains

We travel out of Sydney and make our way into the spectacular Blue Mountains. First stop is Featherdale Wildlife Park, home to one of Australia's largest private collections of native animals and birds. Here you'll see Australia’s unique wildlife in a natural bush setting and get the opportunity to cuddle a koala and hand-feed a kangaroo, wallaby or emu. We continue westward over the Nepean River and climb up to almost 1000m above sea level into the Blue Mountains, famous for its eucalyptus forests and spectacular sandstone cliffs. We stop to purchase lunch in the picturesque village of Leura, located in the Katoomba area of the Blue Mountains region and known for its quality cafés, restaurants and speciality food shops. We then take the Cliff Drive to Echo Point which provides panoramic views of the southern Blue Mountains and the iconic Three Sisters. This afternoon we visit Scenic World, where you can enjoy the thrill of a 52º incline riding one of the steepest passenger railways in the world, the Scenic Railway. The glass-roofed carriages make for an unforgettable experience giving you amazing views of the rainforest and the spectacular Jamison Valley. The railway descends 310m through a cliff-side tunnel, emerging into ancient rainforest at the Jamison Valley floor. Once in the rainforest, there's a 10, 30 or 50-minute stroll through the tranquil rainforest on an elevated boardwalk, the Scenic Walkway. The boardwalk will take you to the Scenic Cableway, the steepest and largest aerial cable car in Australia, which gently descends 545m into the Greater Blue Mountains World Heritage Area rainforest of the Jamison valley and then returns you to the escarpment. The Cableway's fully enclosed cabin provides a unique vantage point for viewing the Three Sisters, Orphan Rock, Mount Solitary and Katoomba Falls. Your final adventure is to join the Scenic Skyway. You'll glide between the cliff tops and admire the rainforest canopy through the glass floor! At the flip of a switch, breathtaking views of ancient ravines and dazzling waterfalls are revealed through the cabin floor 270m directly below. The 360º bird's eye view takes in the Three Sisters, Katoomba Falls, Mount Solitary and the never-ending expanse of the Jamison Valley. Another experience not to be missed! After an exhilarating afternoon, we make our way back to Sydney where once again, the evening is yours to enjoy.

  • Included meals: Breakfast

Day 18 - Free Time

Enjoy a day at leisure for shopping or personal sightseeing. There are so many choices today: visit the Taronga Park Zoo the nation's leading zoological garden, with over 4000 animals to see, keeper talks and shows, and uninterrupted views of Sydney harbour; take a coffee cruise on the harbour where you can take in the panoramic views and listen to the commentary as you snack on tea, coffee and light refreshments; if you're feeling adventurous, you could climb the Sydney Harbour Bridge (pre-booking essential) and enjoy the spectacular panoramic view over the harbour; or for something a little more relaxing, enjoy one of the many harbour side restaurants and soak up the atmosphere. Tonight, we join together for our special farewell dinner. There’ll be an opportunity to get dressed up as you indulge in a three-course dinner at 360º Bar and Dining restaurant at the top of Sydney Tower. The views will be spectacular as the restaurant boasts 360º revolving views of the Sydney skyline. What a great way to complete your holiday in Australia!

  • Included meals: Breakfast, Dinner

Day 19

Return flight to the U.K.

  • Included meals: Breakfast

Day 20

Arrive in the U.K.


We will stay for four nights at the Rendezvous Hotel Melbourne, or similar, Melbourne; you will then stay for two nights at the Lasseters Hotel, Alice Springs; your next two nights stay will be at the Ayers Rock Resort, Yulara; we then move to Cairns for a four night stay at the Pullman Cairns International; finally we move on to Sydney for a four night stay at the Park Royal Darling Harbour Sydney. 

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