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An Odyssey Down Under: Australia and New Zealand

Program Number: 16434RJ
Start and End Dates:
2/3/2013 - 3/2/2013; 10/26/2014 - 11/22/2014; 11/9/2014 - 12/6/2014; 1/2/2015 - 2/1/2015; 1/8/2015 - 2/7/2015; 1/22/2015 - 2/21/2015; 2/5/2015 - 3/7/2015; 2/19/2015 - 3/21/2015; 3/5/2015 - 4/4/2015; 3/19/2015 - 4/18/2015; 4/2/2015 - 5/2/2015;
Duration: 27 nights
Location: Australia/New Zealand
Price starting at: $11,285.00 - Price may vary based on date, departure city
Program Type:
Meals: 70; 25 Breakfasts, 25 Lunches, 20 Dinners    
Meal Options: Vegetarian    

Geographically isolated, rich in indigenous heritage and home to diverse and fragile ecosystems, Australia and New Zealand have much in common. Yet, separated from one another by more than 1,200 miles of open sea, they each bear distinctions that run deeper than can be perceived from afar. Find out for yourself what these island nations share and what makes each unique on this in-depth odyssey of discovery.




Highlights

• Local experts reveal the story of New Zealand’s settlement by Maori and Europeans.
• Witness the eruptions of spectacular geysers in the Rotorua geothermal region and experience the magnificent fjords of Milford Sound.
• Examine a delicate natural wonder — the Great Barrier Reef — and learn about efforts to protect it.



Activity Particulars

Walking up to three miles per day over uneven terrain.



This program is a combination of program # 20135 "New Zealand: An Odyssey Down Under", extension program # 21740 "New Zealand's Capital" and program # 20134 "Australia: An Odyssey Down Under".




Date Specific Information

10-26-2014

Departures of program # 16434 operating in 2014 have only three nights in Auckland and do not visit Christchurch. The itinerary on this departure is: Arrival Auckland (New Zealand), 3 nights; coach to Rotorua, 2 nights; flight to Invercargill and coach to Te Anau, 1 night; coach to Queenstown, 2 nights; flight to Wellington, 3 nights; flight to Sydney (Australia), 4 nights; flight to Melbourne, 3 nights; flight to Alice Springs, 2 nights; coach to Uluru / Ayers Rock, 1 night; flight to Cairns, 3 nights; flight to Sydney, 1 night; departure.
Enjoy the latest in hearing technology — listening devices — on this date.



11-9-2014

Departures of program # 16434 operating in 2014 have only three nights in Auckland and do not visit Christchurch. The itinerary on this departure is: Arrival Auckland (New Zealand), 3 nights; coach to Rotorua, 2 nights; flight to Invercargill and coach to Te Anau, 1 night; coach to Queenstown, 2 nights; flight to Wellington, 3 nights; flight to Sydney (Australia), 4 nights; flight to Melbourne, 3 nights; flight to Alice Springs, 2 nights; coach to Uluru / Ayers Rock, 1 night; flight to Cairns, 3 nights; flight to Sydney, 1 night; departure.
Enjoy the latest in hearing technology — listening devices — on this date.



1-2-2015

On this departure, Melbourne is visited prior to Sydney. This is to avoid a clash with the peak period of the Australian Open tennis. The itinerary of this departure is Arrival Auckland (New Zealand), 4 nights; coach to Rotorua, 2 nights; flight to Christchurch, 2 nights; flight to Invercargill and coach to Te Anau, 1 night; coach to Queenstown, 2 nights; flight to Wellington, 3 nights; flight to Melbourne (Australia), 3 nights; flight to Sydney, 4 nights; flight to Alice Springs, 2 nights; coach to Uluru / Ayers Rock, 1 night; flight to Cairns, 3 nights; flight to Sydney, 1 night; departure.



Itinerary Summary

Arrival Auckland (New Zealand), 4 nights; coach to Rotorua, 2 nights; flight to Christchurch, 2 nights; flight to Invercargill and coach to Te Anau, 1 night; coach to Queenstown, 2 nights; flight to Wellington, 3 nights; flight to Sydney (Australia), 4 nights; flight to Melbourne, 3 nights; flight to Alice Springs, 2 nights; coach to Uluru / Ayers Rock, 1 night; flight to Cairns, 3 nights; flight to Sydney, 1 night; departure.



Coordinated by Road Scholar.



Overnight flight from the U.S.A.
1 night
Cross International Dateline
1 night
Arrive Auckland (New Zealand)
4 nights

Be introduced to New Zealand history, including Maori and European settlement, through lectures and a guided visit to the Auckland War Memorial Museum. Enjoy a cruise on Auckland's gorgeous Waitemata Harbour and learn about the city’s volcanic geography on a field trip to Auckland's picturesque North Shore.



Coach to Rotorua
2 nights

En route to Rotorua visit the Waitomo Caves, famous for the beautiful light display provided by their glowworm inhabitants. Learn of the impact of the amazing geothermal activity in the region as you explore the Waimangu Volcanic Valley and cruise on Lake Rotomahana. Attend a Maori cultural performance and learn how the knowledge of Maori Arts and Crafts is being handed down to the youth of today.



Flight to Christchurch 2 nights

Visit a historic homestead in this most English of New Zealand's cities to learn of its planned settlement and how it came to be known as the garden city. Be entertained by the Te Puna Ora storyteller channelling two of the city's early inhabitants. Explore the city to learn of the devastation wrought by the earthquakes of 2010 and 2011 and how this resilient region is recovering and planning for the future. Travel across Banks Peninsula to the French-inspired settlement of Akaroa and cruise on Akaroa Harbour to spot the area's unique wildlife including one of the world's smallest and rarest dolphins. Visit the International Antarctic Centre to learn of the city's historic links to Antarctica and understand why it is the gateway to the frozen continent for the New Zealand, United States and Italian Antarctic research programs.



Flight to Invercargill and coach to Te Anau
1 night
Coach to Queenstown
2 nights

Stretching nine miles inland, Milford Sound’s sheer rock walls tower above water inhabited by seals, penguins and dolphins while rainforests clutch the cliffsides. Journey through this striking geographical feature on a magical daytime cruise. In the spectacular adventure playground that is Queenstown, learn about the Wakatipu Basin and explore its lake onboard a vintage coal-fired steamer. Visit a farm homestead across the lake to learn about New Zealand high-country farming and view a demonstration of dog control and sheep shearing. Take the gondola up Bob's Peak for dinner looking out over majestic scenery.



Flight to Wellington
3 nights

Visit New Zealand's National Museum Te Papa Tongarewa to discover the physical and human influences that have created this small Western democracy in the South Pacific. Learn about politics and public life as you visit the New Zealand capital's key institutions: the New Zealand parliament and the supreme court. Gain an insight to what New Zealand may have been like prior to human settlement during a visit to Zealandia, a community-created wildlife sanctuary and native bush regeneration project. Understand the physical forces at play in New Zealand on an expert-led field trip along Wellington's rugged southern coastline.



Flight to Sydney (Australia)
4 nights

Learn from a local academic about Australia’s early settlement and study Sydney’s colonial past. Go inside the iconic Sydney Opera House guided by an expert and also attend a live performance "in the house" one evening. Be introduced to Australia’s unique wildlife at Taronga Park Zoo and take in the wonderful views of Sydney Harbour and the city it affords. Take a boat excursion on the magnificent Sydney Harbour for a unique view of the city. Visit the famous Bondi beach to gain some understanding of Australia's beach culture and the relationship residents have with the water. Enjoy some free time to explore this wonderful modern city at your leisure.



Flight to Melbourne
3 nights

Journey to Phillip Island for its famous Penguin Parade, pausing at a wildlife park en route to meet the wombat and other local critters. Explore Melbourne’s fascinating Queen Victoria Markets. A local expert discusses Australia's economy and politics. Visit the Australian collection at the National Gallery of Victoria to learn about indigenous Australian art. Have some free time to explore Australia's second city (although the locals will tend to disagree on that point!) at leisure utilising its wonderfully user-friendly tram system.



Flight to Alice Springs
2 nights
Coach to Uluru / Ayers Rock
1 night

An expert lecture addresses the Aboriginal culture and heritage in Alice Springs, a centre of aboriginal culture for more than 15,000 years. An Aborigine woman teaches you about "bush tucker" and makes a dinner to show how these traditional flavours can be used in contemporary cuisine. Learn how the School of the Air and the Royal Flying Doctor Service deliver vital services to the most remote parts of the Outback. Visit the Alice Springs Desert Park to meet Australian desert wildlife. See the huge monoliths of Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park - Ayers Rock (Uluru) and the Olgas (Kata Tjuta) - up close on guided walks.



Flight to Cairns
3 nights
Flight to Sydney
1 night
Departure

On a full-day boat excursion exploring the magnificent Great Barrier Reef, choose to snorkel and/or go reef-viewing in a semi-submersible vessel. Observe the North Queensland tropical rainforest from above the canopy on the SkyRail Rainforest Cableway as you "float" down the Kuranda Range. Visit a local cultural park to gain an understanding of coastal Aboriginal culture and lifestyle. Fly to Sydney and overnight in an airport hotel prior to your flight home to the USA.






Accommodations
Auckland: Hotel in central business district. Rotorua: Hotel with outdoor pool. Christchurch: Hotel in the centre of the city. Te Anau: Garden hotel on the shores of Lake Te Anau. Queenstown: Hotel on the shores of Lake Wakatipu. Wellington: Hotel across the road from Wellington's waterfront. Sydney: Hotel in Darling Harbour. Melbourne: Hotel in City Centre. Alice Springs: Resort hotel. Ayers Rock: Outback lodge. Cairns: Resort with lagoon-style pool. Sydney: Hotel near airport.
Meals and Lodgings
   Mercure Auckland
  Auckland, New Zealand 3 nights
   Copthorne Hotel Rotorua
  Rotorua, New Zealand 2 nights
   Kingsgate Hotel Te Anau
  Te Anau, New Zealand 1 night
   Copthorne Hotel & Apartments Queenstown Lakeview
  Queenstown, New Zealand 2 nights
   Copthorne Hotel Wellington, Oriental Bay
  Wellington, New Zealand 3 nights
   Novotel Rockford Darling Harbour
  Sydney, Australia 4 nights
   The Swanston Hotel Melbourne, Grand Mercure
  Melbourne, Australia 3 nights
   Alice Springs Resort
  Alice Springs, Australia 2 nights
   Outback Pioneer Hotel & Lodge
  Uluru (Ayers Rock), Australia 1 night
   Novotel Cairns Oasis Resort
  Cairns, Australia 3 nights
   Mercure Sydney Airport
  Sydney, Australia 1 night
 Mercure Auckland
Type: Hotel
  Description: Situated in the centre of Auckland and within walking distance to picturesque Waitemata Harbour.
  Contact info: 8 Customs Street
Auckland,  1010 New Zealand
phone: +64 -9-377-8920
web: www.accorhotels.com/gb/hotel-1721-mercure-auckland/index.shtml
  Room amenities: Room facilities include tea/coffee making facilities, television, telephone, refrigerator, iron/ironing board, Internet & PC connection and hairdryer.
  Facility amenities: Hotel facilities include a laundry service, fitness facilities and safety deposit box facilities
  Smoking allowed: No
  Elevators available: Yes
  Additional nights prior: TBA in Preparatory Material The Program Provider can arrange additional accommodation for participants arriving earlier or departing later than the group. A Request form will be included with the Preparatory Material, or participants can contact the Provider direct by email.

 Copthorne Hotel Rotorua
Type: Hotel
  Contact info: Fenton Street
Rotorua,  3010 New Zealand
phone: +64 -7-348-0199
web: http://www.millenniumhotels.co.nz/copthornerotorua/
  Room amenities: Room facilities include tea/coffee making facilities, television, telephone, refrigerator, iron/ironing board and hairdryer.
  Facility amenities: Hotel facilities include a heated swimming pool, spa, sauna, tennis court, gymnasium, guest laundry and safety deposit box facilities.
  Smoking allowed: No
  Elevators available: Yes

 Kingsgate Hotel Te Anau
Type: Hotel
  Description: Set amongst manicured gardens on the tranquil shores of Lake Te Anau.
  Contact info: 20 Lakefront Drive
Te Anau,  9600 New Zealand
phone: +64 -3-249-7421
web: www.millenniumhotels.co.nz/kingsgateteanau/index.html
  Room amenities: Room facilities include tea/coffee making facilities, television, telephone, refrigerator, hairdryer and electric blankets.
  Facility amenities: Hotel facilities include a guest laundry, foreign exchange and safety deposit box facilities.
  Smoking allowed: No

 Copthorne Hotel & Apartments Queenstown Lakeview
Type: Hotel
  Description: The Copthorne Hotel & Apartments Queenstown Lakeview is located within a 10 minute walk of the town centre and all rooms enjoy superb lake and mountain views.
  Contact info: 88 Frankton Road
Queenstown,  9300 New Zealand
phone: +64 -3-442-7950
web: www.millenniumhotels.co.nz/copthornequeenstownlakeview/index.html
  Room amenities: Room facilities include tea/coffee making facilities, television, telephone, refrigerator, iron/ironing board, electric blankets and hair dryer.
  Facility amenities: Hotel facilities include a spa pool, guest laundry and safety deposit box facility.
  Smoking allowed: No
  Elevators available: Yes

 Copthorne Hotel Wellington, Oriental Bay
Type: Hotel
  Description: The hotel has stunning views of Wellington's delightful harbour. It is located on the edge of Wellington's central business district and offers easy, flat walking access to many of the city's attractions including Te Papa Tongarewa: Museum of New Zealand.
  Contact info: 73 Roxburgh Street
Wellington,  6011 New Zealand
phone: +64 -4-385-0279
web: www.millenniumhotels.co.nz/copthorneorientalbay/index.html
  Room amenities: Room facilities include tea/coffee making, ISD telephone, television, refrigerator, ironing facilities and electric blankets (upon request).
  Facility amenities: Hotel facilities include a heated swimming pool, cocktail bar, guest laundry facilities and a safety deposit box.
  Smoking allowed: No
  Elevators available: Yes

 Novotel Rockford Darling Harbour
Type: Hotel
  Description: Overlooking Darling Harbour, this hotel is within minutes walk to the heart of the city.
  Contact info: 17 Little Pier Street
Sydney NSW,  2000 Australia
phone: +61 -2-8217-4000
web: www.accorhotels.com.au
  Room amenities: Room facilities include tea/coffee making facilities, television, telephone, hairdryer, refrigerator and internet access.
  Facility amenities: Hotel facilities include a safety deposit box, gymnasium, indoor heated lap pool and foreign exchange facilities. Valet laundry service is available or a commercial laundry is located nearby.
  Smoking allowed: No
  Elevators available: Yes

 The Swanston Hotel Melbourne, Grand Mercure
Type: Four-Star Hotel
  Description: Located in the heart of Melbourne, close to major attractions and adjacent to major tram routes.
  Contact info: 195 Swanston Street
Melbourne, VIC, NA 3000 Australia
phone: +61 3 9663 4711
web: www.theswanstonhotel.com.au
  Room amenities: Room facilities include tea/coffee making facilities, cable television, telephone, refrigerator, hairdryer and iron/ironing board.
  Facility amenities: Hotel facilities include laundry, gymnasium, heated indoor swimming pool, foreign exchange, safety deposit box facilities and internet access.
  Smoking allowed: No
  Elevators available: Yes

 Alice Springs Resort
Type: Hotel
  Description: Situated on the banks of the famous Todd River, with its magnificent river red gums, the hotel is only a five minute walk from the town centre.
  Contact info: 34 Strott Terrace
Alice Springs NT,  0870 Australia
phone: +61 -8-8951-4545
web: www.chifleyhotels.com.au/component/hoteldetail/?tid=ASR
  Room amenities: Room facilities include air-conditioning, tea/coffee making facilities, refrigerator, television, in-house movies, telephone, radio, internest access, iron/ironing board hairdryer.
  Facility amenities: Hotel facilities include a swimming pool, guest laundry, dry cleaning service, internet kiosk, foreign currency exchange and safety deposit box facility.
  Smoking allowed: No

 Outback Pioneer Hotel & Lodge
Type: Hotel
  Description: The hotel is located as a part of the Ayers Rock Resort.
  Contact info: Yulara Drive
Yulara NT,  0872 Australia
phone: +61 -8-8957-7605
web: www.voyages.com.au
  Room amenities: Room facilities include tea/coffee facilities, telephone, television, refrigerator, iron/ironing board and hair dryer.
  Facility amenities: Hotel facilities include a guest laundry, swimming pool and safety deposit box facility.
  Smoking allowed: No

 Novotel Cairns Oasis Resort
Type: Hotel
  Description: Located within walking distance from the waterfront esplanade and the city centre.
  Contact info: 122 Lake Street
Cairns QLD,  4870 Australia
phone: +61 -7-4080-1888
web: www.accorhotels.com/gb/hotel-0534-novotel-cairns-oasis-resort/index.shtml
  Room amenities: Room facilities include tea/coffee making facilities, television, telephone, refrigerator, hairdryer, iron/ironing board, in-room safe and internet connection.
  Facility amenities: Hotel facilities include lagoon-style pool with a sand-beach entrance, gymnasium, valet laundry/dry cleaning and guest laundry.
  Smoking allowed: No
  Elevators available: Yes

 Mercure Sydney Airport
Type: Hotel
  Description: Situated next to riverfront parklands and overlooking an 18 hole golf course, the hotel is only 2kms from Sydney’s International and Domestic Airports but is away from the direct flight path.
  Contact info: 20 Levey Street
Wolli Creek
Sydney NSW,  2205 Australia
phone: +61 -2-9518-2000
web: www.mercuresydneyairport.com.au
  Room amenities: Room facilities include air-conditioning, tea/coffee making facilities, refrigerator, television, pay-to-view movies, telephone, iron/ironing board and hairdryer.
  Facility amenities: Hotel facilities include a laundry/valet service, computer centre, outdoor swimming pool, gymnasium, tennis courts and squash courts.
  Smoking allowed: No
  Elevators available: Yes
  Additional nights after: TBA in Preparatory Material The Program Provider can arrange additional accommodation for participants arriving earlier or departing later than the group. A Request form will be included with the Preparatory Material, or participants can contact the Provider direct by email.


Travel Details
  Start of Program:
Auckland, New Zealand You will be staying at Mercure Auckland that night.
  End of Program:
Sydney, Australia You will be staying at Mercure Sydney Airport the night before.
  Required documents:
The Road Scholar Health & Safety Form is required. Passport only is required for New Zealand. Passport & Visa required for Australia. All US passport holders travelling to Australia must obtain an electronic visa prior to entering the country. You will not receive a visa stamp inside your passport, nor will you receive anything in writing. Instead you will be registered with the Australian Government as valid to enter/exit Australia. Road Scholar Travel Services are able to assist you with this process free of charge and will send you an ETA form in your welcome package.
  Parking availability:
n/a
Transportation (For Independent Travelers)
To Start of Program
  Location:  Auckland
  Nearest airport:  Auckland International & Domestic Airports
  Transportation to site: Coach transfers are provided for the group at the beginning of the program, from the arrival airport to their accommodation. POP participants can join this transfer free of charge provided they are present when the transfer departs. Alternatively they can make their own arrangements and use the airport shuttle bus or taxi services at their own expense.
  From End of Program
  Location:  Sydney
  Nearest airport:  Sydney International and Domestic Airports
  Transportation from site: Coach transfers are provided for the group at the conclusion of the program, from their accommodation to the departure airport. POP participants can join this transfer free of charge provided they are present when the transfer departs. Alternatively they can make their own arrangements and use the airport shuttle bus or taxi services at their own expense.
Elevation Note: The highest elevation reached is the Homer Tunnel en route to the Milford Sound (NZ) at 3,100 feet.

The prices listed for commercial services and facilities that are not included in the program cost, such as airport shuttles or extra nights lodging, are subject to change without notice. Since Road Scholar cannot guarantee the accuracy of these prices, we strongly suggest contacting the companies directly for the most up-to-date information.


Daily Schedule

Day 1: Departure
(Sunday, February 3)
   
 Evening: Depart the USA on overnight flight to New Zealand.

Day 2: In Flight
(Monday, February 4)
   
 In Transit: Cross International Dateline.

Day 3: Arrivals & Orientation / Orientation walk
(Tuesday, February 5)
   
 Arrive To: Arrival processing then coach to hotel to check in. Welcome, introductions & program overview followed by a lecture introducing participants to Auckland.
 Lunch: In the hotel's top-floor dining room with stunning views of Auckland Harbour and the central business district.
 Afternoon: Excursion: Guided orientation walk through city centre. Remainder of afternoon at leisure.
 Dinner: In the hotel's top-floor dining room with stunning views of Auckland Harbour and the central business district.
 Evening: At leisure.
   
Accommodations: Mercure Auckland
Meals Included: Lunch, Dinner

Day 4: Introduction to New Zealand History / Harbour Cruise / City Orientation / Auckland Museum.
(Wednesday, February 6)
   
 Breakfast: In the hotel's top-floor dining room with stunning views of Auckland Harbour and the central business district.
 Morning: Lecture: Introduction to New Zealand History. Excursion: A yacht cruise on Auckland's magnificent Waitemata Harbour with views of the city and the surrounding volcanic cones. At the conclusion of the cruise we disembark at Auckland's maritime museum.
 Lunch: At Eden Garden surrounded by delightful gardens created in an abandoned quarry nearly 50 years ago.
 Afternoon: Field Trip: Orientation to Auckland city. Field Trip: Guided tour of Auckland War Memorial Museum.
 Dinner: Own arrangements - a chance to sample Auckland's cuisine at your leisure. The Viaduct Basin, formerly the home of the America’s Cup, has a variety of cafes and restaurants a short walk from the hotel.
 Evening: At leisure.
   
Accommodations: Mercure Auckland
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch

Day 5: Auckland's Geology / Explore the North Coast
(Thursday, February 7)
   
 Breakfast: In the hotel's top-floor dining room with stunning views of Auckland Harbour and the central business district.
 Morning: Lecture: Geology of Auckland and its varied coastlines. Field Trip: Exploring Auckland's northern coastline to understand the variety of its coastal environment.
 Lunch: At local restaurant.
 Afternoon: Field Trip: Exploring Auckland's northern coastline continued.
 Dinner: In the hotel's top-floor dining room with stunning views of Auckland Harbour and the central business district.
 Evening: At leisure.
   
Accommodations: Mercure Auckland
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 6: Waitomo Glow-Worm Caves / Coach to Rotorua / City Orientation
(Friday, February 8)
   
 Breakfast: In the hotel's top-floor dining room with stunning views of Auckland Harbour and the central business district.
 Morning: Coach transfer to Waitomo through Waikato's rolling green countryside.
 Lunch: At a local orchard cafe in Waitomo.
 Afternoon: Field Trip: Guided tour of the internationally-recognised Waitomo glowworm caves. Coach to Rotorua. Field Trip: Orientation to Rotorua.
 Dinner: In the hotel.
 Evening: At leisure.
   
Accommodations: Copthorne Hotel Rotorua
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 7: Waimangu Volcanic Valley / Maori Arts and Crafts / Kiwi House / Whakarewarewa Thermal Area / Maori Cultural Evening
(Saturday, February 9)
   
 Breakfast: In the hotel.
 Morning: Field Trip/Class: Waimangu Volcanic Valley: volcanic New Zealand. Waimangu Volcanic Valley is the only geothermal system in the world wholly created as the direct result of a volcanic eruption - the Tarawera Eruption of 10 June 1886. Walk through this amazing volcanic landscape serenaded by the songs of the local native birdlife. Cruise on Lake Rotomohana, also formed as a result of the 1886 eruption.
 Lunch: At local restaurant beside Rotorua's Government Gardens.
 Afternoon: Field Trip/Class: Te Puia (Arts & Crafts Institute). Visit the Kiwi House to meet New Zealand's national symbol - the flightless kiwi; view the Whakarewarewa thermal area, boiling mudpools & pohutu geyser; partake in a Maori cultural performance.
 Dinner: Experience a hangi - the traditional Maori method of cooking food in the ground - at a Marae.
 Evening: Enrichment Activity: Maori Cultural Evening.
   
Accommodations: Copthorne Hotel Rotorua
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 8: Flight to Invercargill then coach to Te Anau / Course Overview / Ata Whenua Shadowland - Fiordland on Film
(Sunday, February 10)
   
 Breakfast: In the hotel.
 Morning: Coach to Rotorua Domestic Airport for flight to Invercargill.
 Lunch: At local restaurant.
 Afternoon: Coach to Te Anau with course overview and introduction to the Southern Lakes en route. Coach to Ata Whenua Shadowland - Fiordland on Film.
 Dinner: In the hotel.
 Evening: At leisure.
   
Accommodations: Kingsgate Hotel Te Anau
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 9: Cruise on stunning Milford Sound / Coach to Queenstown
(Monday, February 11)
   
 Breakfast: In the hotel.
 Morning: Field Trip/Class: Travel around the side of Lake Te Anau and through New Zealand's highest tunnel, the Homer Tunnel (where you may well meet a cheeky kea or two), en route to majestic Milford Sound. Cruise on Milford Sound, one of Fiordland's most picturesque fiords, where mountains stand tall right out of the sea and rainforest clings to sheer rock faces.
 Lunch: On board cruise
 Afternoon: Coach to Queenstown.
 Dinner: In the hotel.
 Evening: At leisure.
   
Accommodations: Copthorne Hotel & Apartments Queenstown Lakeview
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 10: Lake Wakatipu Cruise including Walter Peak Sheep Station / Southland in Perspective / Gondola to Skyline Restaurant overlooking Queenstown's stunning natural beauty
(Tuesday, February 12)
   
 Breakfast: In the hotel.
 Morning: Field Trip: Cruise on Lake Wakatipu on board the historic steamer TSS Earnslaw. Excursion: Visit Walter Peak High Country Farm for a guided tour and an insight into New Zealand farmers' working dogs.
 Lunch: At Walter Peak Homestead.
 Afternoon: Continue Field Trip: Cruise on Lake Wakatipu. Lecture: Southland in Perspective. Gondola to Skyline Restaurant on top of Bob's Peak for dinner overlooking Queenstown, Lake Wakatipu and The Remarkables.
 Dinner: At Skyline Restaurant.
 Evening: Gondola to coach, then return to hotel. Remainder of evening at leisure.
   
Accommodations: Copthorne Hotel & Apartments Queenstown Lakeview
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 11: Flight to Wellington / Orientation to Wellington / City Lights
(Wednesday, February 13)
   
 Breakfast: In the hotel.
 Morning: Coach to Queenstown Domestic Airport for flight to Wellington via Christchurch. Coach to Wellington accommodation.
 Lunch: In the hotel.
 Afternoon: Field Trip/Class: Orientation to Wellington, New Zealand's capital - cable car, botanic gardens, Boulton Street Memorials, Premier House.
 Dinner: At accommodation.
 Evening: Wellington city lights tour.
   
Accommodations: Copthorne Hotel Wellington, Oriental Bay
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 12: Zealandia Native Sanctuary / Brooklyn Wind Turbine / Te Papa Tongarewa: Museum of New Zealand
(Thursday, February 14)
   
 Breakfast: In the hotel.
 Morning: Field Trip/Class: Zealandia native sanctuary - New Zealand as it once was. Excursion: Brooklyn Wind Turbine - stunning views over Wellington and across Cook Strait to the South Island.
 Lunch: At accommodation.
 Afternoon: Field Trip/Class: Walk to Te Papa Tongarewa: Museum of New Zealand. Lecture/guided program followed by free time for self-exploration. Remainder of afternoon free.
 Dinner: At accommodation.
 Evening: At leisure.
   
Accommodations: Copthorne Hotel Wellington, Oriental Bay
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 13: New Zealand Politics & Public Life / New Zealand Parliament House / New Zealand's Supreme Court
(Friday, February 15)
   
 Breakfast: In the hotel.
 Morning: Lecture: New Zealand Politics & Public Life. Field Trip/Class: New Zealand's Parliament. Excursion: Old St Paul's Church.
 Lunch: At local restaurant.
 Afternoon: Field Trip/Class New Zealand's Supreme Court.
 Dinner: At own arrangements to sample the many fine restaurants, cafes and bars Wellington has to offer.
 Evening: At leisure.
   
Accommodations: Copthorne Hotel Wellington, Oriental Bay
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch

Day 14: Wellington's Fascinating Coastline / Flight to Sydney / Course Overview / Orientation to Sydney
(Saturday, February 16)
   
 Breakfast: In the hotel.
 Morning: Field Trip/Class: Wellington's fascinating coastline - how tectonic forces have shaped the New Zealand capital.
 Lunch: At hotel.
 Afternoon: Coach to Wellington International Airport for flight to Sydney.
 Dinner: In the hotel.
 Evening: Lecture: Course Overview and Introduction to Sydney.
   
Accommodations: Novotel Rockford Darling Harbour
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 15: Introduction to Australia / Sydney's Colonial History / Sydney Opera House tour
(Sunday, February 17)
   
 Breakfast: In the hotel.
 Morning: Lecture: Introduction to Australia; its early discovery & settlement.
 Lunch: In the hotel.
 Afternoon: Field Trip: Sydney's Colonial Past featuring The Rocks area and Macquarie Street. Excursion: Guided tour of the beautiful, World Heritage-listed Sydney Opera House, a masterpiece of late modern architecture.
 Dinner: At a local restaurant in Sydney's Darling Harbour precinct.
 Evening: At leisure.
   
Accommodations: Novotel Rockford Darling Harbour
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 16: Orientation to Beachside Suburbs / Cruise on Sydney Harbour
(Monday, February 18)
   
 Breakfast: In the hotel.
 Morning: Field Trip: Orientation to Sydney's sought-after eastern beach-side suburbs & the central business district. Field Trip/Class: Cruise on magnificent Sydney Harbour and learn how Sydney Harbour has evolved.
 Lunch: At local restaurant in The Rocks, the historic area where Sydney began.
 Afternoon: Time to explore Sydney at leisure.
 Dinner: At own arrangements to taste what Sydney's restaurant scene has to offer.
 Evening: At leisure.
   
Accommodations: Novotel Rockford Darling Harbour
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch

Day 17: Opal Discovery Centre / Taronga Park Zoo / Performance at the Sydney Opera House
(Tuesday, February 19)
   
 Breakfast: In the hotel.
 Morning: Lecture: Australia's precious stone - the opal. Field Trip/Class: Taronga Park Zoo: meet some of the unique fauna of Australia at this iconic zoo boasting splendid views across Sydney Harbour to the city.
 Lunch: At Taronga Park Zoo.
 Afternoon: Field Trip/Class Continued: Taronga Park Zoo: time for personal exploration. Ferry return to Circular Quay. Remainder of afternoon at leisure.
 Dinner: In the hotel.
 Evening: EnrichActivity: This evening we enjoy a performance at the Sydney Opera House - one of the world's great pieces of architectural design. Definitely something to tell the folks back home about!
   
Accommodations: Novotel Rockford Darling Harbour
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 18: Flight to Melbourne / Course Overview / Introduction & Orientation to Melbourne / Evening Video
(Wednesday, February 20)
   
 Breakfast: In the hotel.
 Morning: Coach to Sydney Domestic Airport for flight to Melbourne.
 Lunch: At local restaurant.
 Afternoon: Lecture: Course Overview and Introduction to Melbourne. Field Trip: Orientation to the city: Shrine of Remembrance and Melbourne's newest attraction - Eureka Skydeck 88.
 Dinner: In the hotel.
 Evening: Enrichment Activity: Video - "Australia: The Big Country"
   
Accommodations: The Swanston Hotel Melbourne, Grand Mercure
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 19: Australia's Economy and Health System / Melbourne's famous Queen Victoria Markets / local wildlife park - meet the wombat & friends / Phillip Island Penguin Parade
(Thursday, February 21)
   
 Breakfast: In the hotel.
 Morning: Lecture: Australia's Economy & Health System. Enrichment Activity: Explore Melbourne's famous & quirky Queen Victoria Markets.
 Lunch: At Queen Victoria Markets
 Afternoon: Field Trip: Coach to Phillip Island to visit a local wildlife park and the Penguin Parade.
 Dinner: At quintessential Australian local country pub bistro near Phillip Island.
 Evening: Field Trip continued: Penguin Parade at Phillip Island.
   
Accommodations: The Swanston Hotel Melbourne, Grand Mercure
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 20: Introduction to Australian Art at the National Gallery of Victoria / Remainder of day at leisure
(Friday, February 22)
   
 Breakfast: In the hotel.
 Morning: Field Trip/Class: Tram to the National Gallery of Victoria - Introduction to Australian Art.
 Lunch: At leisure in the city.
 Afternoon: At leisure.
 Dinner: Own arrangements - an opportunity to explore and sample Melbourne's renowned restaurant scene.
 Evening: At leisure.
   
Accommodations: The Swanston Hotel Melbourne, Grand Mercure
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch

Day 21: Fly to Alice Springs / Course Overview / School of the Air / Aboriginal Culture / Olive Pink Botanical Garden BBQ / Stars of the Southern Hemisphere
(Saturday, February 23)
   
 Breakfast: In the hotel.
 Morning: Coach to Melbourne Domestic Airport for flight to Alice Springs. Lecture: Course Overview.
 Lunch: In the hotel.
 Afternoon: Field Trip/Class: School of the Air - providing education to students in isolated communities. Lecture: Aboriginal Culture, Art & Heritage in Central Australia.
 Dinner: BBQ at Olive Pink Botanical Garden.
 Evening: Performance: Outback Ballads & Yarns - stories and songs of life in Australia's Red Centre. Lecture: Stars of the Southern Hemisphere - look for the Southern Cross and other southern constellations in the clear air of Australia's Red Centre, free of the lights of the big city.
   
Accommodations: Alice Springs Resort
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 22: Alice Springs Desert Park / Western MacDonnell Ranges / Aboriginal Bush Foods
(Sunday, February 24)
   
 Breakfast: In the hotel.
 Morning: Field Trip/Class: Alice Springs Desert Park - desert landscapes, flora & fauna.
 Lunch: At Alice Springs Desert Park.
 Afternoon: Field Trip: Western MacDonnell Ranges & Simpson's Gap - unique desert landforms. Field Trip: Royal Flying Doctor Service - learn how medical services are dispensed across Australia's vast Red Centre. Lecture at local restaurant/caterer: Aboriginal Bush Foods - Traditional & Contemporary
 Dinner: At local restaurant - contemporary Australian cuisine utilising traditional Aboriginal flavourings.
 Evening: At leisure.
   
Accommodations: Alice Springs Resort
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 23: Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park Cultural Centre / Uluru (Ayers Rock) / Sunset watching.
(Monday, February 25)
   
 Breakfast: In the hotel.
 Morning: Coach to Uluru (Ayers Rock) with an excurion to a camel farm en route.
 Lunch: At Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park Cultural Centre.
 Afternoon: Field Trip: Guided tour of Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park Cultural Centre. Field Trip: Guided tour around Uluru (Ayers Rock), one of the world's largest monoliths. This sacred Aboriginal site is truly awe-inspiring. EnrichActivity: Watch the sun set over Uluru.
 Dinner: In the hotel.
 Evening: At leisure.
   
Accommodations: Outback Pioneer Hotel & Lodge
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 24: Kata Tjuta (The Olgas) / Fly to Cairns / Orientation to City / Course Overview / Great Barrier Reef lecture
(Tuesday, February 26)
   
 Breakfast: At Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park Cultural Centre.
 Morning: Field Trip: Kata Tjuta (The Olgas), a collection of 36 rounded rock domes aptly named as Kata Tjuta means "many heads" in a local language.
 Lunch: At restaurant in Ayers Rock Resort.
 Afternoon: Coach to Ayers Rock Domestic airport for flight to Cairns. Orientation to Cairns en route to hotel.
 Dinner: On board flight to Cairns.
 Evening: Lecture: Course Overview. Lecture: The Great Barrier Reef.
   
Accommodations: Novotel Cairns Oasis Resort
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 25: Cruise on Great Barrier Reef, one of Australia's most remarkable natural gifts
(Wednesday, February 27)
   
 Breakfast: In the hotel.
 Morning: Coach to marina. Field Trip/Class: Cruise on the Great Barrier Reef, one of the seven wonders of the natural world, enjoying the opportunity to snorkel and view the reef from a glass-bottom boat or semi-submersible.
 Lunch: Seafood buffet on board cruise.
 Afternoon: Field Trip/Class continued: Cruise on Great Barrier Reef.
 Dinner: Own arrangements.
 Evening: At leisure.
   
Accommodations: Novotel Cairns Oasis Resort
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch

Day 26: Wet Tropical Rainforests / Kuranda / SkyRail / Tjapukai Aboriginal Cultural Park / Program Review
(Thursday, February 28)
   
 Breakfast: In the hotel.
 Morning: Lecture: Wet Tropical Rainforests of North Queensland. Coach to the village of Kuranda, a mountain retreat surrounded by rainforest
 Lunch: At local restaurant.
 Afternoon: Field Trip: SkyRail Rainforest Cableway - ride over the treetops and down from the edge of the Atherton Tablelands escarpment. Field Trip/Class: Tjapukai Aboriginal Cultural Park - Northern Queensland Coastal Aborigines and their social organisation and culture. Lecture: M.A.S.H. - final program review.
 Dinner: In the hotel - Farewell.
 Evening: At leisure.
   
Accommodations: Novotel Cairns Oasis Resort
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 27: A chance to relax, explore Cairns at leisure, pack and prepare for the flight home.
(Friday, March 1)
   
 Breakfast: At accommodation.
 Morning: At leisure in Cairns.
 Lunch: At leisure in Cairns.
 Afternoon: Coach transfer to Cairns airport for flight to Sydney.
 Dinner: On board flight to Sydney.
 Evening: Coach to accommodation. Remainder of evening at leisure.
   
Accommodations: Mercure Sydney Airport
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 28: Departure for the USA.
(Saturday, March 2)
   
 Breakfast: At accommodation.
 Morning: Coach transfer to Sydney Airport. Departure to the USA on a flight to Los Angeles.
   
Meals Included: Breakfast
Important information about your itinerary: Every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy and completeness of the information featured on this website. Itineraries are based on our best information at this time. Circumstances beyond our control may require us to adjust itineraries or other details. We regret any inconvenience this may cause and appreciate your understanding. Information will be sent to you from your Program Provider approximately three weeks prior to the program start date. The prices listed for commercial services and facilities that are not included in the program cost, such as airport shuttles or extra nights lodging, are subject to change without notice. Since Road Scholar cannot guarantee the accuracy of these prices, we strongly suggest contacting the companies directly for the most up-to-date information.

Suggested Reading List


A Traveler’s History of New Zealand and the South Pacific


Author: John Chambers


Description: A concise, generous overview of the region, organized chronologically, and including line drawings and maps. While a great deal of the book focuses on New Zealand, there is also ample coverage of the South Pacific.



Aboriginal Art


Author: Wally Caruana


Description: Aboriginal art has now taken its place in the collections of the great museums and galleries. This is the first concise survey of the full range of the work of Australia's indigenous artists from all parts of the continent.



Australia: The East, Travellers’ Wildlife Guides


Author: Les Beletsky


Description: A wonderfully comprehensive guide to the plant and animal life of eastern Australia. This colorful book features illustrations of 650 commonly encountered fish, reptiles, amphibians, mammals and birds and special sections on the Great Barrier Reef and eastern Australian and Tasmanian wildlife parks and reserves.



Captain James Cook


Author: Richard Hough


Description: A vividly written narrative of the life and three great voyages of Captain Cook. This fine book includes a gripping account of his discoveries throughout the Pacific and his demise in the Sandwich Islands.



Cultural Atlas of Australia, New Zealand & the South Pacific


Author: Richard Nile & Christian Clerk


Description: This handsome volume weaves together history, geography, archaeology, and the arts, covering the Australasian region from prehistory up to the founding of the modern nations. Features hundreds of illustrations.



Eyewitness Guide New Zealand


Author: Eyewitness Guides


Description: This superb illustrated guide to New Zealand from the Eyewitness series features color photography, dozens of excellent local maps and a region-by-region synopsis of the country's attractions. Handsome, convenient and up-to-date, this is the guide to carry.



Fishwatcher’s Field Guide: Great Barrier Reef


Author: Idaz Greenberg


Description: A double-sided, laminated card covering the reef fish of Australia, Papua New Guinea and the tropical Pacific.



Fodor's Exploring Australia


Author: Michael Ivory


Description: This excellent up-to-date guide will take you Down Under with ease and style. Includes maps, illustrations and unusual information on features of cultural, historical and natural interest.



Great Southern Landings: An Anthology of Antipodean Travel


Author: Jan Bassett


Description: This eclectic and quirky anthology collects nearly 100 excerpts from various writers who have left their impressions of actual visits to the Antipodes in books and journals, while others, travelling only in their minds, left accounts of imaginary voyages to distant utopias. The contributors include Jonathan Swift, Jules Verne, Joseph Conrad, Kenneth Clark, Charles Darwin, Robin Hanbury-Tenison, Herbert Hoover, Anthony Eden, Anthony Trollope, Mark Twain, Bruce Chatwin, Jan Morris, Harold Larwood, Germaine Greer, and Peter Conrad. A helpful introduction is given to each extract and author.



Hand Guide to the Birds of New Zealand


Author: Barrie Heather, Hugh Robertson & Derek Onley


Description: A compact edition of the classic field guide to the birds of New Zealand, featuring 74 color plates. Brief descriptions, range maps and illustrations are integrated on facing pages for easy reference.



In A Sunburned Country


Author: Bill Bryson


Description: Bill revels in Australia's eccentric characters, dangerous flora and fauna, and other oddities. As has become his custom, he effortlessly imparts much fact-filled history in this wildly funny book. Included at the end is a short bibliography.



New Zealand: A Natural History


Author: Tui De Roy & Mark Jones


Description: The authors, both naturalists and photographers, present the wildlife, habitats and splendor of their adopted homeland in this pictorial celebration.



Reefscape, Reflections on the Great Barrier Reef


Author: Rosaleen Love


Description: An ecology and history of the Great Barrier Reef, including its human inhabitants (who run the gamut from pirates to naturalists). Rosaleen Love employs science, anthropology and purple prose in this meditative account.



Songlines


Author: Bruce Chatwin


Description: In this much celebrated travelogue, Chatwin combines straightforward reporting, history, dreamtime stories and a heady mix of quotations from his notebooks. He transforms a journey through the outback into an exhilarating, semi-fictional meditation on our place in the world.



The Bone People


Author: Keri Hulme


Description: Set in modern-day South Island, this lyrical novel brings together three troubled individuals who represent New Zealand’s varied Maori and European traditions. (Winner of the Booker Prize)



Travellers’ Tales Australia: True Stories of Life Down Under


Author: Larry Habegger & Amy G. Carlson


Description: An excellent introduction to the people, culture and traditions of Australia as seen through the eyes of mostly contemporary writers, including Pico Iyer, Paul Theroux, Bruce Chatwin, and D.H. Lawrence. Organized thematically, it includes articles and excerpts on the Great Barrier Reef, the outback, the Nullarbor Plateau and Bondi Beach.



Whale Rider


Author: Witi Ihimaera


Description: A magical, mythical novella about a young Maori girl and her relationship with a whale, that ultimately saves her village. Based loosely on Ihimaera’s youth in a Maori village.





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