Start your Australian adventure in Australia’s most iconic destination – Sydney. This incredible harbour city offers something for everyone and you are sure to see all sides of the city. Enjoy a morning tea cruise in Sydney Harbour, take in the Sydney city sights with a boutique group of like-minded travelers and get up close and personal with the world famous and ever recognizable Sydney Opera House.
As you leave Sydney behind and head toward the west coast of Australia, you’ll be visiting an area most North American clients only dream to see. Take a step off the beaten path as you venture to Sal Salis, one of Australia’s most remote luxury lodges located on the shore neighboring Ningaloo Reef. Here, you’ll find 260 km of fringing reef, located just off the coast and home to 250 species of coral and over 500 species of fish. Snorkel through coral lagoons in Coral Bay, swim with the truly awesome whale shark and 4WD red sand dunes in Cape Range National Park. This area of Australia is a treasure and the only complaint you’ll have is that you’ll wish you could stay forever.
While on the west coast of Australia, enjoy a stop in one of Australia’s less populated and more leisurely metropolitan cities, Perth. In Perth, you’ll find incomparable beaches and beautiful warm weather, making for a perfect sunny getaway. Nestled on the banks of the Swan River, Perth is a fantastic place for outdoor activities like cycling along the shore, playing volleyball on Cottesloe Beach or kayaking through the Swan Valley. Plus, the beautiful warm weather makes this possible almost year-round.
Finally, you’ll make your way back to the east coast of Australia for a visit to Melbourne, Australia’s most multi-cultural city. Discover Melbourne's secret laneways and rooftops, the cultural hub of Federation Square, buzzing bars, boutiques and eateries, and the iconic MCG. Experience St Kilda, the Royal Botanic Gardens and bohemian Brunswick Street. No trip to Melbourne is complete without a day trip to Phillip Island to see the natural phenomenon of the little Fairy Penguins coming in from a day of fishing to nestle into their little sand dunes for the night.
- Roundtrip Economy Class Airfare on Qantas Airways from Los Angeles to Sydney & Melbourne back to Los Angeles (Addon flights from your local airport can be added at an additional cost)
- Qantas Walkabout Pass flights from Sydney – Exmouth - Perth - Melbourne
- Seat in coach airport shuttle transfers
- 4 nights Sydney at the 5* Amora Jamison in a Deluxe King Room
- AEA Luxury Tours half day Panoramic Sydney City tour
- Sensational Sydney Cruises Harbour Highlights Morning Tea Cruise
- Sydney Opera House Tour & Tasting Plate
- 3 nights at the 5* Luxury Lodge Sal Salis including all meals, drinks, Whale Shark tour and Sal Salis daily activities
- 3 nights Perth at the 4.5* Crown Metropol in a Luxe King Room
- Rottnest Express full day Experience Rottnest with Bike
- Captain Cook Freemantle Lunch Cruise
- 3 nights at the 4.5* Crown Promenade in a Standard King Room
- Hidden Secrets half day Lanes and Arcades tour
- Colonial Tramcar Early Dinner
- Oceania Tours and Safaris full day Phillip Island tour with Penguins Plus
- All taxes & fuel surcharges
Day 1 - Depart Los Angeles for Sydney with
Qantas is the number one way to travel to Australia and your vacation begins the second you step onboard a Qantas flight with Australia just a movie, meal, sleep away. With over 95 years of experience in long haul travel, Qantas strives to ensure every passenger in every cabin has the most comfortable and authentic experience. Qantas offers direct service from Los Angeles, San Francisco (add $250), Dallas Fort Worth (add $220) & New York JFK (add $200) - add on fares with American Airlines available from other cities.
The Qantas onboard experience has a class for every passenger from First suites, Business, Premium Economy and Economy cabins and offers the best in comfort, Australian food and wine, amenities and exceptional service. All cabins experience the latest in inflight entertainment and technology including premium content from HBO, new movie releases, TV programs and an extensive music library with over 1500 entertainment choices. All passengers also receive amenity kits so passengers can freshen up during their long haul journey.
- Upgrade to premium economy from $440 per person each way
- Upgrade to business class from $2,300 per person each way
- Upgrade to a First Class suite from $6,900 per person each way
- Can take the upgrade one way or roundtrip and combine economy/premium/business/first classes on the same ticket
Day 2 - Cross International Dateline
Day 3 -
Seat in coach transfer from Sydney International Airport to accommodation.
ACCOMMODATION - Stay 4 nights in the Heart of Sydney This award-winning 5-star luxury hotel in the heart of Sydney features stylish accommodations, along with 2 restaurants, 2 bars, a day spa, swimming pool, fitness center and business center. Amora Hotel Jamison Sydney is just a 10-minute walk from Circular Quay, Sydney Opera House, Sydney Harbour Bridge and The Rocks. It is a 15-minute walk from Darling Harbour. The city’s best shopping, dining and nightlife are on the hotel’s doorstep.
Day 4 - Sydney - Half
Day City Sights tour
This morning you will be picked up from your hotel for your small group Panoramic Sydney Sights tour. Commence a morning Panoramic Sydney Sights tour. Visit the historic Rocks area (Old Town of Sydney) and hear of the early convict history. Enjoy magnificent views of the Opera House, see Sydney Harbour Bridge and the shopping heart of the city including the Queen Victoria Building and Sydney Tower. Visit Sydney's trendy district, Oxford Street and elegant Paddington with its terrace houses. Arrive at the famous beaches - see Tamarama, Bronte and stop at the Bondi beachfront to stroll and enjoy a morning coffee or tea (at own expense). See surfers, famous Aussie lifesavers and Sydney's most spectacular panoramic viewpoint. Return to Sydney via Sydney Heads lookout, Watsons Bay, Kings Cross & Mrs Macquaries Point for unsurpassed views of the Harbour Bridge & Opera House.
Image: Destination New South Wales / Tourism Australia
Day 5 -
Explore Sydney Harbour and Sydney Opera House
This morning, enjoy the company of a small group aboard a 52 foot motor yacht. Your captain and host will share the rich history of Sydney Harbour and its foreshore as you take in the sights of the Sydney Harbour Bridge, the Sydney Opera House and the bays and coves of Sydney Harbour. Enjoy a light morning tea with coffee, tea, juice and water.
This afternoon, see inside the world's most recognizable 'sails' and experience this miracle of architecture and engineering. A work of art that came into existence against impossible odds to become one of the busiest performing arts centers in the world. Working with new, rich audio-visual components, where images are projected onto the fabric of the building, your guide will take you on an emotional journey, engrossing you in a story to rival any opera plot with its dramatic twists and turns. Some 1,500 performances, from opera to circus, rock and cabaret, are staged each year to audiences of around 1.5 million. After your tour, please proceed to the Opera Kitchen which is located on the lower concourse between Kenji Restaurant and the Opera Bar. Enjoy a three-tier gourmet tasting plate, which can be enjoyed before or after the guided tour. Sit back and be spoilt for choice as you relish some of Sydney's best cuisine and soak in the Sydney Harbour views. The perfect way to experience one of the world's most stunning icons.
Image: Destination New South Wales / Tourism Australia
Day 6 -
Self explore Sydney or consider adding a tour (additional cost):
- Blue Mountains Day Tour
Visit Scenic World and dare yourself to ride the steepest Railway in the world with spectacular views of the Three Sisters and the Valley. Go through the quaint village of Leura showing the beautiful stores, houses and gardens along the way to Reids Plateau. A picturesque view of the Jamison Valley, taking in the rear view of the Three Sisters away from the crowds. Return to Sydney by way of Featherdale Wildlife Park, with a chance to cuddle up to a koala or feed the baby wallabies. Your trip to Sydney is not complete without a cruise on Parramatta River to Sydney Harbour Circular Quay.
- Taronga Zoo
This small group tour led by an expert guide offers an excellent introduction to Australia's wildlife and brings you close to the animals. There are plenty of photographic opportunities with kangaroos, wallabies, birds, wombats, echidnas and reptiles. Another fantastic offering from Taronga Zoo is Roar & Snore – Sydney’s ultimate sleepover. Nestled on the cliff top edge of Sydney’s stunning harbour, Taronga Roar and Snore’s is the only opportunity to camp overnight with views of Sydney Harbour and the city on one side and lions, leopards and meerkats on the other.
- Hunter Valley Wine Tour
Relax and enjoy fabulous food and wine in Australia's oldest wine growing region. Located just two hours north of Sydney, the Hunter Valley combines world renowned wines, gourmet produce and stunning countryside. The flexible itinerary gives you access to a range of boutique wineries and the opportunity to meet the wine makers. Take a behind-the-scenes tour at one of the wineries, then enjoy a gourmet lunch at one of the Hunter's best restaurants.
Day 7 -
Fly Sydney to Exmouth, Western Australia
Seat in coach transfer to Sydney airport and your flights to Learmouth (Exmouth), Western Australia. Upon arrival transfer to your luxury lodge accommodation.
ACCOMMODATION - Sal Salis Ningaloo Reef is an exclusive safari camp hidden in the white sand dunes of Western Australia's Cape Range National Park. Sixteen spacious wilderness tents are just meters from the water's edge and one of the world's greatest fringing coastal coral reefs. Sal Salis Ningaloo Reef accommodation and hosting style exudes 'Wild Bush Luxury' and Sal Salis guides deliver an extraordinary insight to one of Australia's best kept natural secrets - the World Heritage Ningaloo Reef.
Your time at Sal Salis includes: All meals, alcoholic & non-alcholic beverages from a select bar, Use of all snorkel gear & wet suits, Guided wilderness activities, guided snorkel tours, kayaking snorkel tours, guided walks in Cape Range National Park & Swim with the Whale Sharks experience
Image: Sal Salis
Days 8 - Sal Salis, swim with whale
Each year between April and July these slow-moving, gentle, filter-feeding giants migrate past Ningaloo Reef. The world’s biggest fish can grow to lengths of 12 metres or more and has a healthy appetite in order to sustain its immense size. Fortunately for most sea-dwellers (and for us) they feed primarily on plankton and krill, taking in huge gulps of water and filtering out their microscopic meal.
Sal Salis offers whale shark swims with select local partners and you can expect an up-close-and-personal view of these gentle giants. Your whale shark experience begins with our transferring you to Tantabiddi Boat Ramp (about 25 minutes drive) where you will meet your experienced skipper and crew for the day. Morning tea is usually served as you motor out into the Indian Ocean to being the search, this is aided by a spotter aircraft that relays sightings to our skipper. The crew will help you get kitted out in wetsuits and snorkel gear, they will also provide a thorough briefing.
During the course of the day your crew will keep an eye out for turtles, dolphins, dugongs, rays and sea birds and there is usually time for a snorkel at the back of the Reef. A delicious lunch featuring fresh Western Australian produce is provided.
Image: Destination Western Australia
Day 9 - Sal Salis
Today take your pick from the multiple activities on offer at Sal Salis – snorkeling, kayaking or walking tours.
Day 10 - Exmouth to
Transfer to Learmouth (Exmouth)airport and your flight to Perth. Upon arrival in Perth seat in coach transfer to accommodation.
ACCOMMODATION - The Crown Metropol Perth is Perth's leading luxury hotel and located 5 minutes from Perth CBD or 15 minutes from Perth Airport. Located at Burswood Entertainment Complex and beside the magnificent Swan River and set in 100 hectares of superbly landscaped gardens and secluded parklands.
Day 11 - Perth - Freemantle
Enjoy wonderful views as you cruise the calm waters between Perth and Fremantle. Your Captain will point out the sights, including Perth's impressive Bell Tower, Kings Park, the restored Swan Brewery, Royal Perth Yacht Club and the magnificent homes overlooking the river and Fremantle's busy inner harbour. Disembark at Freemantle and enjoy this historic port town and numerous outdoor cafes & restaurants.
Image: Destination Western Australia
Day 12 - Rottnest Island by
Depart Perth by ferry to commence a full day Experience Rottnest tour. Explore Rottnest Island by bike at your own pace and discover secluded beaches, snorkel among the reefs and meet the local wildlife including the quokka – unique to Rottnest Island – a friendly marsupial similar to a wallaby but the size of a domestic cat. The island is 11 kilometers long by 4 kilometers wide, and takes approximately 3.5 hours to ride around. Board the ferry by 3.55pm to depart the island.
Image: Tourism Western Australia
Day 13 - Perth to
Transfer to Perth airport and your flight to Melbourne. Upon arrival in Melbourne seat in coach transfer to accommodation.
ACCOMMODATION - Crown's newest hotel - Crown Metropol offers fresh, vibrant, modern and stylish accommodation. From the moment you take in the hotel's elegant form and enter the uniquely designed reception area, you will feel a sense of peace and calm that makes every visit to Crown Metropol a welcome escape from day-to-day life.
- Half Day Lanes & Arcades tour
This morning join your small group walking tour for a casual guided walk through Melbourne's lanes and arcades to engage in the life of this city which many miss. Discover local designers and specialty retailers, tiny cafes and more. A little history and attention to amazing architecture will inspire locals and visitors alike. Get orientated and return to those places you like best in the afternoon, at your leisure.
Image: Tourism Australia
Early evening board the Colonial Tramcar for your Early Dinner, A delightful innovative approach to dining in the first travelling Tramcar Restaurant in the world. As the glossy, burgundy trams cruise the scenic streets of Melbourne, diners enjoy a seasonal menu, quality Australian wines or a selection of beverages from a fully stocked bar.
- Phillip Island Ultimate Ecotour
This afternoon join your small group tour heading out of Melbourne to Phillip Island. Get up close and personal with the friendly residents of Moonlit Sanctuary Wildlife Conservation Park, where you learn about the conservation of these loveable native animals. The eco certified sanctuary also showcases some lesser known but equally adorable endangered species including the Southern Bettong, Eastern Quolls and rare Fluffy Gliders. Visit historic Churchill Island and see sheep shearing in action, with time to explore the historic buildings. Next, visit the Koala Conservation Centre to see koalas in their natural environment. Take a stroll along the boardwalks at the Nobbies and Seal Rock Centre, before arriving at Summerland beach for the nightly penguin parade. Home to Victoria's largest colony of little penguins, Summerland beach provides a spectacular backdrop to the world famous penguin parade. Watch as hundreds of little penguins make their way across the beach and go home for the night.
Image: Visions of Victoria
- Depart Melbourne to Los Angeles with Qantas
Transfer by seat in coach shuttle to Melbourne airport for your return flight to the US.
Package from pricing is based on double occupancy (2 people sharing a room) for travel Monday - Thursday from Los Angeles, San Francisco or Dallas on Qantas (add $200 for Qantas JFK flight); $60 supplement applies each way for travel on Friday to Sunday. Ask an Aspire consultant for pricing for other travel dates. Add-on fares are available from other cities. Certain blackout dates apply on the accommodation and tour value add offers - check with your Aspire consultant. Seats are limited and may not be available on every flight. Hotels are subject to availability. All prices reflect a discount for purchases made by cash/wire transfer/check, please see terms and conditions for credit card payments. There are no discounts for payment made by credit cards. Cancellation penalties and other restrictions apply.
A passport with extended validity past your travel dates and an Electronic Travel Authority (ETA) is required to enter Australia; Aspire Down Under can issue your ETA for a processing fee of $25 per person. A copy of the picture page of your passport and payment for your ETA is required at the time of booking.