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Walk, Fly, and Sail Down Under

Australia is an enormous country chock full of gems on and off the beaten path. It’s nearly impossible to see everything this country has to offer in one two-week trip, so we’ve honed in on southeastern Australia for a stellar itinerary that includes a helicopter tour over the 12 Apostles, a 3-day walk on Tasmania’s east coast, and exploring the ins and outs of Sydney. We’re offering this 12-night program as a group departure, beginning on March 26 and ending on April 7. It’s ideal for couples, a family, or single travelers who want to see Australia in style with an intimate, fun, and adventurous group. It’s priced per person on a 4-passenger basis and a 6-passenger plus private guide basis.

If you’re inspired by this itinerary and want something slightly altered or if you’re interested in this trip but cannot make the exact dates, let us know and we will create the perfect program just for you.

Days 1-3 – Hotel Lindrum Melbourne

Welcome to Australia! Upon landing in Melbourne, you will be transferred to Hotel Lindrum in the heart of this picturesque city, where you will spend the first three nights of your Australian adventure. This evening, be sure to experience the gourmet delights of this foodie capital of the world.

On your first full day in Victoria, your private guide will take you on a full drive along the stunning Great Ocean Road to join a helicopter flight over old shipwrecks and the iconic 12 Apostles. En route you will see fields of sheep, picturesque small villages and rich farmland.

On the next day you have a choice of a full day tour with wildlife focus or with food and agriculture focus. The wildlife program includes a private visit to Healesville Sanctuary, the best place in Victoria to see and interact with native Australian wildlife. The interactive platypus show and dingo country are of particular interest, but you will also have plenty of opportunities to get up close to wallabies, kangaroos, Tasmanian devils and a host of other indigenous wildlife in a bush setting. You will then visit Philip Island for one of the Australia’s most popular animal experiences, the parade of fairy penguins as they cross the beach to return to their nests on the beach. We have arranged for you to be in a private area on the beach to watch this amazing spectacle.

For an insider track to life in Victoria a visit to the beautiful Mornington Peninsula with a particular focus on food and agriculture is the perfect choice. You’ll visit a working farm that is teaming with olives, grapes, herbs, veggies, sheep, chicken, and fish. Australia produces some of the best food and wine you will ever taste, and this experience will put you in touch with its producers and allow you a full day of indulgent food and wine tastings.

Day 4: Henry Jones Art Hotel, Hobart

This morning you board a short flight to Hobart, the capital of Tasmania. Tasmania is renowned for pristine untouched wilderness, rocky coastlines, quirky independent people, and gorgeous beaches. You will stay at the Henry Jones Art Hotel on Hobart’s lively waterfront. This funky hotel, filled with interesting art is a short walk from Hobart’s famous Salamanca Place and all of the waterfront action.

Days 5-7: Wineglass Bay Sail Walk, Tasmania’s East Coast

After a brief gear check, your group will head up the east coast to the fishing port town of Triabunna to board the 75-foot luxury yacht, the Lady Eugenie, your home for the next three nights. You soon set off for the uninhabited and starkly beautiful Maria Island. Take your choice of a 4-5 hour Bishop & Clerk hike for stunning views of Tasmania’s coastline, or take the easier walk amongst the painted cliffs near water level.

The next day the Lady Eugenie will sail north past the geological wonders of the Fossil Bay, Bishop & Clerk, Freycinet Peninsula, and Isle du Phoques. You’ll have your choice of a 3-4 hour walk up Bear Hill on the secluded Schouten Island or a leisurely snorkel and swim. Your decadent and barefoot dinner will take place on the shores of Schouten Island and feature the finest Tasmanian food and wine.

On your lasy day the Lady Eugenie will sail to Cooks Beach where you’ll disembark, head inland, and ascend Mt Graham. From its peak, you’ll have fantastic views of the coast and picturesque Wineglass Bay. Your descent though the Tasmanian Blue Gum forest will bring you back to the Lady Eugenie, waiting for you along the shores of Wineglass Bay. The remainder of the day will be filled with swimming, wine, canapés, and a delicious dinner by the shores of Wineglass Bay.

Day 8: Saffire Freycinet

This morning you will bid your skipper farewell and take off on another walk through the pink granite rocks of the Hazards mountain range. After a scenic picnic lunch, you’ll descend down the track and meet your driver who will take you to Tasmania’s most luxurious property, Saffire Freycinet, where you will spend the night. This beautifully designed lodge maintains the highest standards in luxury and service while fully embracing the scenery and environment. There are lots of active nature-focused activities, but we recommend using your $150 spa credit after all of your days of walking. The Tasmanian Devil experience is also a must-do.

Days 9-10: Henry Jones Art Hotel, Hobart

Enjoy the morning’s activities at Saffire before heading back to your hotel in Hobart. You’ll have the night to mosey around Hobart, try one of their fabulous and quirky restaurants, and just relax.

Your full day in Hobart will begin with a visit to MONA (Museum of Old and New Art), the largest private art collection in Australia. The art is quite compelling and the building itself is incredibly unique and interesting. You’ll have lunch at MONA’s flagship restaurant, The Source, and then head to the Coal River Valley wine region for some tastings. Finally, you’ll walk through Richmond, a quaint colonial town, before heading back to Hobart.

Days 11-12: The Langham Sydney

Fly to Sydney where you’ll spend your last two nights in Australia. The Langham is a boutique hotel ideally located near Sydney’s Circular Quay and in walking distance to the Botanical Gardens and Opera House. After settling into your room, you’ll make your way to Darling Harbour where you’ll take an afternoon cruise. Sydney, built on a multitude of harbors and inlets, is definitely best seen from the water. You will be on a private cruise so you will even be able to stop to swim, snorkel, or go fishing.

The next day you will explore Sydneyby land, including its famous beaches, ending at the renowned Bondi Beach for a two-course seafood lunch overlooking the water. Afterward, enjoy boutique wine and liquor tastings at Elizabeth Bay Cellars or head to the water for a surfing lessons. Success is almost guaranteed!

Day 13: Depart

This morning a private guide will take you to Observatory Hill and across the Harbour Bridge to Sydney’s North Shore where you will come face to face with your favorite Australian wildlife at a private behind-the-scenes breakfast tour at the Taronga Zoo. You will have a late morning transfer to the Syndey International Airport in time for your flight home.

We are happy to organize an extension to other Australian highlights, like the Great Barrier Reef.

Price

Price for 4 travelers: $9,200 per person

Price for 6 travelers and a private guide: $12,500 per person

Price does not include flights from Melbourne to Hobart, Hobart to Sydney, or international flights.

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Jamie Mehrotra