Sydney Harbour Bridge, Australia

Australian Signature Highlights

Discover the most iconic places and spectacular experiences in Australia at a relaxed pace on our Australian Signature Highlights tour. Our 20 day suggested itinerary combines city landmarks with outdoor adventures, and fine wining and dining with a taste of the authentic Outback.

Your tour of Australia’s highlights begins in Sydney, the state capital of New South Wales. The metropolis is home to some of the country’s most recognisable attractions; visit the Opera House, the Harbour Bridge and the Royal Botanic Gardens. Next, swap the populous city for panoramic vistas in Blue Mountains, before moving on to experience the charming elegance of Hunter Valley’s vineyards.

Yet another dramatic Australian backdrop awaits as you move on to Uluru. Look down on the dusty ochre land from a helicopter flight, or gaze up into the night sky as you star gaze. Take a luxurious and leisurely four day cruise, spent exploring the Great Barrier Reef with scuba diving and snorkelling trips, or simply soaking in the sights from sandy coastlines. Make the most of your final few days with zip lining through the Port Douglas rainforest and paddle boarding off palm-lined shores.

Our Experts Recommend:
  • Climb Sydney Harbour Bridge
  • Learn the art of wine tasting in Hunter Valley
  • Take a helicopter flight over Uluru
  • Scuba dive in the Great Barrier Reef

Sample Itinerary Summary

We can tailor any part of this itinerary or create a new one just for you.

Duration
20 days
Destination Breakdown
  • 3 nights
  • Blue Mountains
    2 nights
  • Hunter Valley
    2 nights
  • Uluru
    3 nights
  • 2 nights
  • Lizard Island
    4 nights
  • Port Douglas
    3 nights

Itinerary Breakdown

Start your Australian Highlights tour with a three night stay at Harbour Rocks Hotel, a luxury boutique hotel overlooking Sydney Harbour. On land, our Essential Sydney Tour will take you on a whistle stop trip round the iconic Opera House and Royal Botanic Gardens, as well allowing time for some well-earned retail therapy time on Oxford Street.

There’s nowhere better to learn to surf than Bondi Beach. Take a two hour beginner’s course and ride your first waves. Or stay dry by hopping on a ferry from Circular Quay to the coastal suburb of Manly. The ultimate way to experience Sydney is by admiring the cityscape from the top of Sydney Harbour Bridge.

Following a busy few days in the city, take respite in the green-carpeted hills and valleys of the Blue Mountains. After driving to Spicers Sangoma Retreat you’ll be surrounded by nothing but awe-inspiring panoramas and peaceful serenity. The best panoramic views can be found at Scenic World. Take a charming cable car and snake your way through the rainforest, keeping your eye out for hidden viewpoints, like Cahills Lookout – these are where you’ll often discover the most impressive vistas.

Known as the city of arts, Blue Mountains is brimming with local galleries and exhibitions. Get a sense of the region’s rich history in the dazzling antique bazaars and emporiums, or gaze around The Gully – once the most important landmark for Aboriginal tribes.

Get a final glimpse of the Blue Mountains’ golden cliffs as you drive through them on the way to the rolling vineyards of Hunter Valley. With over 150 wineries and cellar doors to choose from, Australia’s oldest wine producing region will quench your thirst for regional favourites Shiraz, Semillon, Chardonnay and Verdelho.

Enjoy dining al fresco in a vineyard, watching the night draw in as you sup on local olives, cheeses and beef. Keep an eye out for the indigenous kangaroos who have developed a taste for grapes and are particularly lively in the late afternoons.

Do nothing but drink in the wine and dappled sunlight, or try a wine tasting or cookery class. There are plenty of local breweries to tour too.

Swap luscious vineyards for the ochre outback as you take a flight from Sydney Airport to Australia’s Red Centre. Sounds of Silence will see you watching the slow sunset over Kata Tjutu and Uluru as you dine on Australian delicacies barbequed to perfection. Bellies full, the resident astronomer will turn your attention to stargazing in the southern night sky.

Next, take flight from Ayres Rock Resort and rise above Mount Conner, Lake Amadeus, and the vast red expanse of Uluru in a helicopter. Back on land, visit the Field of Light – a hugely ambitious art installation that illuminates Ayres Rock with 50,000 stems powered by solar energy.

A flight will take you to tropical Cairns. Discover the relationship the local Kuku Yalanji people have with their land as an Aboriginal guide takes you on a hands on cultural tour of the surrounding rainforest. Learn how nature provides food and medicine, and stop at a freshwater creek to sample some bush tucker. You can even try your hand at spear throwing.

Take the opportunity to experience a thrilling hot air balloon ride. See how many birds and kangaroos you can spot from high up above the Outback. Learn to pro dive on a PADI course, or head to the glittering turquoise waters of the Cairns Lagoon for a dip.

Venture far beyond short day trip territory on the ultimate Great Barrier Reef experience. Hop aboard a small purpose built ship and explore the untouched areas of the UNESCO World Heritage listed site. Swim, snorkel or scuba dive within touching distance of the rainbow coloured coral and marine wildlife. If you’d rather take it all in from above water, join the marine biologist for a glass bottom boat tour.

Waking up moored beside pristine Lizard Island is a particular highlight. Let your toes touch down on the golden sand and relax for the day. Each evening you’ll dine on fresh, locally sourced seafood and tropical fruits, and there’ll even be a chance for a barbeque on a deserted island.

Your Australian Signature Highlights tour comes to an end at the Shantara Resort in Port Douglas. There are still three days left, giving you plenty of time to relax and recuperate in this tropical paradise.

Take a leisurely stroll down Macrossan Street, popping into the galleries and souvenir boutiques. If you want one last thrill, take advantage of one of the many watersports on offer on Four Mile Beach. Parasail, jet ski, or paddle board on the palm fringed coastline. Decipher historic cave paintings on the Daintree Walkabout Tour, learn ancient fishing techniques on the Coastal Kuku Yalanji Cultural Habitat Tour, or whizz through the rainforest on exhilarating zip lines.

 

  • Sydney

    Itinerary Highlights

    • Visit Sydney Opera House
    • Learn to surf on Bondi beach
    • Climb Sydney Harbour Bridge
    • Shop on Oxford Street
  • Blue Mountains

    Itinerary Highlights

    • Take a cable car into the mountains
    • Look out at panoramic vistas
    • Wander round antique shops
    • Visit Aboriginal landmarks
  • Hunter Valley

    Itinerary Highlights

    • Tour vineyards and breweries
    • Take a cookery class
    • See kangaroos
    • Dine al fresco
  • Uluru

    Itinerary Highlights

    • Go stargazing
    • Take a helicopter flight
    • View the Field of Light art installation
    • Taste outback delicacies
  • Cairns

    Itinerary Highlights

    • Discover Aboriginal art
    • Learn to throw spears
    • Swim in the lagoon
    • Take a hot air balloon flight
  • Great Barrier Reef

    Itinerary Highlights

    • Scuba dive
    • Whale watch
    • Moor up at Lizard Island
    • Dine on deserted islands
  • Port Douglas

    Itinerary Highlights

    • Shop on Macrossan Street
    • Zip line through rain forests
    • Try water sports
    • Learn ancient fishing techniques