Welcome to the kind of trip that makes you question who you are. One minute you're in a city downing kaffir lime cocktails & razor clams thinking "I'm so metro", next minute you're sleeping in a swag in the outback saying "I could live like this." Start by exploring Sydney, then climb your way up the pretty East Coast of Oz before legging it to NT for some truly Australian experiences.
Welcome to the best month of your life (OK, just under). After meeting up with your brand new travel family, we’ll be hitting the road, country bound, for a day trip to one of Australia’s finest – the majestic Blue Mountains (which aren’t actually blue, but are still damn beautiful). Out here in the great Aussie outdoors we’ll be learning the legend behind the famous Three Sisters rocks formation and exploring the Jamison Ridge area, basically living out all our rustic dreams. Back in Sydney later, we'll eat ourselves silly with a hands-on cook your own BBQ dinner, contemplating how it's possible to do so much in just one day. Waterfalls and mini-hikes by day, sunset drinks and a BBQ by night – that’s just how we roll on day-1 of Contiki.
Today we have one main mission – to explore the sun drenched, eternally cool city of Sydney. Your team will give you the down low on all of Sydney’s best bits as you take a tour of the highlights, including a ferry ride across the world famous harbour. Beach hangs in Manly & the chance to climb the Harbour Bridge are all in a days work.
With Sydney satisfaction levels on high, today we start our Aussie road trip and hit the road, East Coast bound.
We'll break up our journey to Coffs Harbour with a lunch stop in Port Macquarie. This pretty seaside town sits at the end of the Hastings River and gives us a taste of life on the New South Wales mid coast.
Your surf bum dreams are all about to come true as we shack up for the night in our Coffs Harbour surf camp. Sitting right on the beach, a constant stream of swims and beach hangs are the norm, then come night fall it’s all about an open fire, great chats with new friends, and occasional star gazing. Perfection much?
Byron may be calling, but this morning is all about living the Aussie dream as we finish off our Coffs stay with a professional surf lesson. Could this be the secret talent you never knew you had?
Dolphins and humpback whales sailing past the lighthouse of Australia's most easterly point. Organic cafes and bohemian bazaars. 30 kilometres of perfect sand. Oh yes - Byron Bay is every kind of beach paradise with a cherry on top, and our time here will be nothing short of magic.
Today is all yours to explore at your own pace. Early birds why not head towards the Byron Bay Lighthouse for a mesmerising (and romantic) sunrise experience. Then, maybe opt for a cheeky tanning session at one of the many golden beaches. When you're done wiggling your toes in the sand, it's time to satisfy your hunger at one of the many delicious cafes and restaurants. Venture through the streets and soak up the hippie vibes this town has to offer before we make our way to our next destination, Surfers Paradise, where 'beautiful one day, perfect the next' is how the lifestyle goes.
This morning is all about chilling, hitting the beach, and getting a little R'n'R after the night before. We're nice like that. But remember, you're not in Surfer's forever, so do this thing right - don't stay in bed when there's a parachute with your name on it at the nearby skydiving centre. How's that for a rush of adrenaline? In the afternoon just make sure you're back (on earth) in time for some serious koala cuddling sessions at Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary.
All animal cuteness goals can easily be achieved in this neck of the woods. The Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary is undeniably a must-see destination if you've made it as far as Surfer's Paradise. Here's your chance to see how cute koalas really are, feed a kangaroo & see a crocodile up close (but not too close, obvs). Best of all, it's a non-for-profit set up, so our visit supports the sanctuary's animal hospital and gives back to Oz's furry friends. Soak up on all the cuteness this place has to offer before we head back to Surfer's for a relaxing night by the resort pool or choose to live it up in one of the many nightclubs this city has to offer.
OK we get the hype, the love the world has for the Gold Coast is totally justified. So this morning we’ll kick on and see if all those other Aussie rumours are as well-founded. We have a sneaking suspicion they will be...
Before we sail our way into Queensland's next much-loved coastal town, we’ll stop for a bite in the state's capital, Brisbane. Grab a slice of the city’s well known laid-back urban lifestyle whilst roaming South Bank & Queen Street Mall, then it’s on with our journey to “the Sunny Coast”. With the imposingly beautiful Glass House Mountains as our backdrop, we ain’t complaining.
The Sunshine Coast never disappoints, and we can’t wait for you to fall head over heels with Noosa the way we do every.single.time. Drenched in natural beauty, Noosa's all your seaside town dreams rolled into one. Head's up, get an early night tonight, tomorrow's one hell of an adventure...
Rise and shine beach babes! We're heading to a UNESCO World Heritage site and the world's largest sand island.
Sitting in the sea with over 800,000 years of natural history in its grains, our included Fraser Island day trip will be filled with sand dunes, pretty lakes & dense rainforests. See those Instagram likes roll in with a snap of Lake Mackenzie, known for its silky silica sand and intense glassy blue water, then appease the hunger growls with a tasty lunch. Keep an eye out for dingoes as we cruise the world’s longest sand highway, then it’s back to Noosa tonight for a legit Aussie dinner at the Surf Club.
Speaking of legitimately Australian, it's time to wave goodbye to the pristine beaches of Noosa as we make our way to Langmorn Station, a working cattle station that dishes up true Aussie farm life. Tonight may just go down in the history books, with past passengers citing it the best night of their trip...
Honest Australian hospitality knows no bounds at our farmstay, and you’ll be blown away by farm owner Nan and the rest of the family as they welcome you into the fold, country style. Fill up on Nan’s famous home cooked damper cake, an outback speciality, then it’s on to the tractor to meet some of the farm’s larger residents. Tonight is all about partying outback style – tuck in to a huge dinner feast, try whip cracking, then grab the karaoke mic and bust out those dancefloor moves.
Just one night on The Old Station will have you hooked on the outback life and wishing you could stay forever. But with The Whitsundays on our horizon, things are only going to get even better from here.
What can top the Whitsundays? Not much...except the Great Barrier Reef, the next stop on our road trippin’ adventure.
Tropical Townsville never fails to impress with its Colonial buildings and checkered maritime history. We'll get orientated with the city and grab some lunch before kicking on to Cairns.
Vibing restaurants, bouncing clubs, & endless tropical feels greet us in the town of Cairns. As the gateway to the Great Barrier Reef this is one of Australia’s most buzzing little towns, and the energy is seriously catchy.
Today is all about ticking off those once in a lifetime bucket list experiences. Think you’ve got what it takes to bungy jump or go whitewater rafting? Prove it – we’ve got optionals lined up that will get your head spinning with adrenaline. #NOREGRETS yo!
Well good morning Cairns you delightful palm tree paradise. We have two days here to get deep - which may even mean a scuba dive on one of the 7 natural wonders of the world. You game?
Now we’ve got Queensland covered (and will forever be in love with the sunshine state), it’s time to hit the skies with an included flight to the mighty red centre. Northern Territory, we incoming...
Welcome to the Aboriginal art hub of Alice Springs. We'll jump straight in to checking out the national parks & iconic spots of the region, including Simpson's Gap, a prominent split in the mighty McDonnell Ranges and an important location for Aboriginal history. It’s said the Gap is the mythological home of giant goanna ancestors, and is also the spot where several dreaming trails and stories cross. Feeling adventurous? Have a go at holding a snake or other Aussie reptiles and release your inner Crocodile Dundee.
Move over Bear Grylls, as by the time we’ve finished this morning’s Aboriginal ‘Bushtucker’ tour we’ll be all over knowing how to survive in the bush. Your Local Guide will give you the 101 on insect eating and plant sampling, and there’ll even be real life bushtucker treats to get stuck in to (if you dare) – witchetty grubs and kangaroo tails for breakfast, yes please...
The authentic Aussie experience continues this evening as we bed down for the night under the desert stars at Kings Creek Station, an outback camel and cattle station. We’ll be sleeping like babies after an afternoon spent exploring the land. “Going bush” (sleeping outdoors) is pretty much as Aussie as they come, so snuggle down in your swag and gaze into the Milky Way with the squad.
Our day's intermittence is in the creamy orange plains of the mighty Kings Canyon. Grab your sneakers, your camera and your sense of adventure – you’re guided hike awaits. We’ll be visiting landmarks like the ‘Garden of Eden’ waterhole and the ‘Lost City’, all the while gazing in astonishment at landscapes where blue and orange stretch as far as the eye can see.
With Kings Canyon off the list, our next majestic spot is one you’ve been waiting for - Uluru. Discovered completely by accident on 18 July, 1873, it's hard to believe this imposing rock region wasn’t spotted sooner. Prepare to be amazed...Uluru is a staggering 700 million years old. Yes, you read that right. We’ll spend our afternoon walking through Uluru’s neighbour Kata Tjuṯa, aka 'The Olgas', before arriving at our eco-friendly outback resort for some well-deserved chill time by the pool.
Get that bucket list back out and prepare to throw a red tick on page one - this morning we watch the sunrise at Uluru. We’ll learn why the site is of such spiritual significance to the Aboriginal people, and there’s even the chance to see the area from a completely different angle – Scenic flight, anyone? Just as we love a good sunrise, we’re suckers for a sunset, so tonight we’ll be raising a glass of champagne at Uluru, toasting our Aussie adventure, naturally.
After a leisurely morning and BBQ breakfast - yep, you can literally BBQ any meal in Oz – it’s time to wave goodbye to Uluru as we make our way back to Alice Springs.
Spend your free evening exploring the local nightlife, chilling by the pool or grab a drink and kick back with your Contiki crew.
This morning's wake up call? An optional hot air balloon ride over the red MacDonnell Ranges rock formations – you know, casual. Then it’s back on the coach as we head towards Tennant Creek with a few cheeky stops on the way.
Stop one falls in the spooked out category - Australia's UFO capital. With only a few permanent residents, Wycliffe Well is little more than a roadhouse in the middle of no man's land, though many venture here to see what all the extra-terrestrial fuss is about.
Despite the name, stop two is not so spooky. Though with these two boulders being so unusually placed and looking like giant potatoes on a chopping board, it’s still pretty weird.
Tonight we take things totally rural, staying in the 'true blue' Tennant Creek - the only point of contact for the million-acre cattle stations of the surrounding area.
This morning we leave Tennant Creek and its barren ways behind and head north, cutting through the Renner Springs that divide the red desert of Australia's centre & the tropics of the north.
We’ll be stopping for lunch at the uber vintage Daly Waters pub. It's been serving booze and hosting country ruckus since 1893 and is a taste of local outback life at its very best, filled with lively Aussie characters and memorabilia of days gone by.
Nothing heals a tired travelling body like swimming in 34 degree thermal pools. Mataranka - we're coming in cool, & ready to leave feeling hot, hot, hot.
The arid desert will feel like a long lost dream as we drive into lush riverside Katherine this afternoon. Pool hangs and team dinner, anyone?
The morning is ours to experience Nitmiluk (Katherine) Gorge, soaking up the citrus coloured cliffs and carved rock formations of the national park. Folklore tales will keep your imagination on high throughout the hike, not to mention the opportunity to spot fresh water crocodiles. Want to get even closer to the water? Take a cruise through the gorge to see the Nitmiluk area up close and personal.
Tonight we head for Kakadu National Park, resting up so we can head deep into the bush in the morning. We’ll be discovering ancient rock art dating back almost 20,000 years and learning about the areas deep Aboriginal past, so get in some sweet zzz’s...
A Kakadu National Park adventure awaits today, complete with swamps, rainforest, wetlands, woodlands, plants, insects and 75 different types of reptiles to uncover. We’ll head to a Cultural Centre and Nourlangie Rock to learn about thousands of years old rock art, then jump on a wildlife boat cruise with one main mission – croc spotting. With 20,000sq km of World Heritage-listed goodness to explore, Kakadu delivers every time.
Today is our last full day (sob), and time to say goodbye to Kakadu. The NT's capital is our final port of call.
But – why rush? Our final day promises to be every bit as exciting as the rest of the trip, with a visit to the thick rainforest of Litchfield National Park. We’ll check out some mind-boggling termite mounds before getting our waterfall fix at Florence Falls – four pounding waterfalls pouring into deep, picture-perfect waterholes with dense rainforest as the backdrop, Mother Nature in her element. Plunge in head first to the transparent waters and let your mind and body revel in the cool fresh bliss.
After some much needed R&R, we'll hop on the coach and make tracks to Darwin for our last night of this epic adventure.
The show is almost over - but damn right we’re going out with a bang. We'll explore Darwin & its museum hosting the Cyclone Tracy display, and you’ll also get the chance to experience the ominous Crocosauras Cove cage of death. If you survive (joking, or are we…), this sadly marks the end of your trip. But you know what they say, don’t cry because it’s over, smile because it happened…or just make plans for a reunion trip.
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Trip Name: The Big Walkabout
Duration: 25 Days
From Price: £3,565
Supplier Tour ID: 101.594A/220085
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