Australia Rail, Wine, The Outback & Reef
Highlights: Sydney | Indian Pacific Train | Adelaide – Barossa Valley | Uluru (Ayers Rock) | Great Barrier Reef
Start your Australian adventure in Sydney before exploring the desert, rainforest and the reef. See iconic city sights like the Sydney Harbour Bridge, Circular Quay, the Opera House and Royal Botanic Gardens, then enjoy a luxury cruise before boarding the Indian Pacific train for Adelaide. At Uluru, a gourmet dinner will be served beneath the outback stars, and a sunset camel ride gives a unique opportunity to watch the colors change on the rock. Your trip ends in Port Douglas, home of the Daintree Rainforest and Great Barrier Reef.
Itinerary at a Glance
The below itinerary is only a suggestion, we offer tailor-made personal service and solutions to help you plan your perfect vacation. This itinerary is also available in the reverse direction.
Day 1 Arrive Sydney Welcome to Sydney! Upon arrival you’ll be transferred to your hotel the heart of downtown, set within walking distance to major attractions like the Sydney Harbour Bridge, Circular Quay, Darling Harbour and the Royal Botanical Gardens.
Day 2 - 3 Sydney – Over the next 2 days you have the choice of 1 of 6 Excursions 1. Shared Luxury Harbor Cruise with progressive lunch at Sydney’s top waterfront restaurants Late this morning board the Ocean Blue, a 46-foot Riviera luxury motor vessel for a cruise on Sydney Harbour. Enjoy complimentary Australian wines as you cruise along the iconic foreshore, taking in sights of the Sydney Harbour Bridge, the Opera House, and the bays and coves of the water itself. Start with a light menu at the famous Doyles on the Beach Restaurant in Watsons Bay, then cruise onto Middle Head and into Middle Harbour. Discover the beauty of the harbor and stop at Balmoral for lunch – this world-famous restaurant is in a relaxed luxury space, featuring fresh local ingredients of the seasons while incorporating global culinary influences. Departing Balmoral and cruising past the Spit Bridge, you’ll have your chance to indulge in dessert, cheese and wines before returning to the main harbor where you can stop for a swim if you choose. 2. Shared Seaplane to Cottage Point for lunch Enjoy a must-do Sydney experience as you fly by seaplane to Cottage Point. Traveling from Rose Bay in Sydney Harbour, you’ll enjoy a series of gorgeous views before arriving in style to the charming Cottage Point Inn. Stepping from the seaplane onto the restaurant’s private dock, you’ll receive a warm welcome from the friendly staff before settling in for lunch. Enjoy superb, modern Australian cuisine on the deck while the water laps gently by, or sit among the cozy, converted boatshed interiors. Your flight back to Rose Bay is equally spectacular and includes a double orbit in front of the Opera House and Harbour Bridge to top off a truly special day. 3. Morning Private Sydney Tour, with afternoon Private Sydney Opera House Tour On this private comprehensive tour, we will take you to Sydney’s iconic sights and gorgeous beaches. Highlights include: Darling Harbour, the Rocks with its historic buildings, Mrs. Mac’s chair for photos of the Opera House and Harbour Bridge, Wooloomooloo Bay, Watsons Bay, The Gap and Bondi Beach. Return to the city via Tamarama and Bronte beaches, Centennial Park, Paddington, Darlinghurst and China Town, Darling Harbour and Barangaroo, the newest urban and entertainment area. Wrapping up the first part of the tour, you’ll drive past the restored finger wharves of Walsh Bay and under the Sydney Harbour Bridge, then transferred back to your Sydney accommodation. Later this afternoon, take the short walk to the Sydney Opera House to meet your guide for an emotional journey inside the modern masterpiece. Discover why Jorn Utzon was an architect of change, and how against a landslide of political and public criticism he created the youngest building ever to be World Heritage listed. You will have a chance to go inside one of the working venues and experience the magic behind the world’s most extraordinary opera, ballet and symphony performances. 4. Let’s Go Surfing Bondi Beach Full Day Best Of Bondi Private Tour This exclusive tour gives you the opportunity to design your ideal beach day out, enjoying the funky beach vibe bars and urban-style shops that add to Bondi Beach’s appeal. Enjoy a tour of the area and learn a little about the history, then hit the waves for private surf lessons with your very own private guide. This person will double as your local insight for the day, so will be able to work with you from the start of the day to ensure every need is met. 5. Morning Taste of Sydney Walking Tour Meet your guide at your hotel for a fascinating walking & tasting tour of Sydney. Stopping at one of the country’s oldest pubs in the historic Rocks area, you’ll drink locally-produced craft beers accompanied by some of the best ‘pub grub’ in Sydney. Wander past the Sydney Opera House and through the Botanic Gardens – an oasis of unique Australian flora right in the heart of the city – then venture to Manta Restaurant on the iconic Woolloomooloo Wharf to indulge in champagne, oysters and a Sydney favorite, salt-and-pepper squid. After dining you’ll take a walk up to the ultra-trendy Potts Point for your final stop at Bistro Rex. Here you will enjoy a delicate menu with a French twist and have the chance to meet the Head Chefs and Co-owners to discover their inspiration behind the menu. Your host will walk you back to your hotel after the meal. 6. Half Day Private Walking Arts St & Shops of Surry Hills & Darlinghurst Surry Hills and Darlinghurst are an essential destination for those who want to know the real Sydney. This tour will usher you into one of Australia’s oldest convict jails, seeking out vintage finds and hidden art galleries that culture hunters will adore. Explore the Sydney precinct with the densest population of cafes, restaurants and creative minds, then enjoy a transfer back to your Sydney accommodation.
Day 4 Depart Sydney onboard the Indian Pacific Train bound for Adelaide Your transcontinental adventure begins as the train pulls away from the platform in Sydney mid-afternoon. As you wind your way through the truly breathtaking Blue Mountains, a sumptuous dinner is served alongside an array of fine wines. After dinner, feel free to relax with a nightcap before heading off for a restful night’s sleep.
Day 5 Arrive Adelaide Mid Afternoon This morning you’ll arrive in the ‘Silver City’ that is Broken Hill to embark on one of two off-train excursions. Whether you learn more about the mining and cultural history of the city or view an impressive piece of art, both options end with a leisurely breakfast back onboard the train as you make your way west. Relax, sit back and take in more astounding views as the train barrels on – before you know it, lunch will be served and you’ll be entering the southern tip of the Flinders Ranges. By mid-afternoon, arrive in Adelaide (known as the cosmopolitan capital of Australia) where you can spend the evening exploring charming colonial streets, selecting unique souvenirs at the Adelaide Central Markets and uncovering hidden gems among the many bars and restaurants.
Day 6 Fleurieu Food, Wine and Wildlife Tour This tour takes you south to the picturesque McLaren Vale Wine Region, known for its distinctly Mediterranean feel thanks to its location so near to the coast. The area features some of the most beautiful scenery in the state, and includes wineries such as Wirra Wirra, d'Arenberg, Coriole and the historic Hardy's winery. Other attractions include the Olive Grove or cheese and wine trail, or you can journey south to the town of Goolwa for a possible glimpse at a Southern Right whale. Down by the sea, visit one of the local brew houses or stop in Victor Harbor for a ride along the causeway. Australia’s only horse-drawn tram links the mainland to Granite Island, home of the Little penguins.
Day 7 Adelaide to Uluru (Ayres Rock) with dinner under the stars Today you’ll say goodbye to Adelaide and hello to the Outback! Ayers Rock (or Uluru) sits prominently in the Red Centre and is renowned as the spiritual heart of Australia. Rich in Aboriginal culture, you’ll find that it truly encompasses the beauty of its surroundings, including your accommodation: Sails in the Desert Hotel. After your transfer, the day is at leisure until evening when your journey begins. Starting on a lone sand dune, a path takes you to an uninterrupted 360-degree view of this vast landscape. In front of you is the fabled Uluru, and behind are the domes of Kata Tjuta enhanced by the glow of the sunset. Here you enjoy sparkling wine and a selection of delectable canapés before feasting on a BBQ buffet of authentic Australian delicacies including barramundi, kangaroo, emu and crocodile, bush salads and classic desserts, complemented by Australian wines. Attention then turns to some of the world's best stargazing, as the local guide takes you on a tour of the spectacular southern night sky.
Day 8 Uluru Sunrise Tour & Sunset Camel Ride One of the most impressive features of Uluru is the way it shifts colors in the changing light—flaring to life as the sun rises and bathing it in bright red and deep purple tones as it sets. Today you will witness the magnificent spectacle at both times of day, first with a guided trek around the base of Uluru where you’ll embrace the culture, geology, and environment that make up the essence of this amazing natural attraction. Find yourself in awe as you watch Uluru change colors in the sunrise, visit waterholes, view ancient rock art sites, and learn the legends of the native Anangu people. This evening, ride camels through the desert and witness Uluru transform at sunset.
Day 9 Uluru to Port Douglas Your adventure continues today as you fly to Cairns and transfer to your fabulous hotel in Port Douglas for 3 nights. This is a truly special place where the ancient Daintree Rainforest meets the Great Barrier Reef, and you’ll have 3 days to discover it all through nature walks, guided bird walks, star gazing, snorkeling, kayaking and much more.
Day 10 Kuranda Rail Rainforestation Skyrail w/Lunch Today a transfer from your hotel takes you to Freshwater Station for your rail journey on a historic route through the cane fields of Cairns to the tropical rainforest of Kuranda. Upon arrival, spend some free time exploring the village before going to Rainforestation’s 40 hectares of gardens for activities. Board the unusual amphibious Army Duck for a different look at the rainforest and let your experienced guide show you unique tropical fruits, ancient plants and native animals that you may not otherwise notice. A barbecue lunch is enjoyed before visiting the Koala and Wildlife Park, where you can cuddle a koala (own expense), smile at a crocodile and hand feed the kangaroos and wallabies. Your tour concludes with an exhilarating ride on the Skyrail Rainforest Cableway – a great way to see the rainforest canopy, CSIRO Interpretive Centre and Smithfield Skyrail terminal – and scheduled return to Cairns.
Day 11 Great Barrier Reef Outer Reef Experience Cruise & Fly Today you’ll be collected from your hotel and transferred to Port Douglas Marina to board the vessel for your cruise. At the outer edge of the continental shelf you’ll arrive to Agincourt Reef, home to the multi-level floating platform where Quicksilver has facilities for both swimmers and non-swimmers to enjoy. Whether from a semi-submersible or through the underwater observatory, you’ll feel completely mesmerized by this lively and complex ecosystem. Your return to Port Douglas is via a 35-minute scenic helicopter flight, passing over pure white sand cays and viewing the amazing kaleidoscope of colors that make up the Great Barrier Reef and tropical Daintree Rainforest.
Day 12 Depart Port Douglas After a wonderful vacation, it’s time to say goodbye to Australia. We have included a private transfer to the airport to begin your journey home.
- 3 nights of accommodation at Radisson Blu Hotel, Sydney – Superior Room
- 1 night onboard The Indian Pacific Train in Gold Service with off-train excursions
(Includes: all meals, Australian wines, base alcoholic spirits and non-alcoholic beverages)
- 2 nights of accommodation at Mayfair Hotel, Adelaide – Superior Queen Room
- 2 nights of accommodation at Sails in the Desert Hotel, Uluru – Superior Room
- 3 nights of accommodation at Pullman Port Douglas Sea Temple Resort – Studio Spa Room
- Sydney private airport transfer
In Sydney, the freedom to choose 1 of 6 excursions:
- Shared Luxury Harbor Cruise with progressive lunch at Sydney’s top waterfront restaurants
(Includes: Progressive three-course lunch and beverages)
- Shared Seaplane to Cottage Point for lunch
(Includes: Return water taxi transfer Circular Quay to Rose bay, return seaplane flight to Cottage Point Inn and three-course a la carte lunch)
- Morning Private Sydney Tour, with afternoon Private Sydney Opera House Tour
(Includes: Morning tea)
- Lets Go Surfing Bondi Beach Full Day Best of Bondi Private Tour
(Includes: Lunch, surf lesson)
- Morning Taste of Sydney Tour
(Includes: Morning tea, local beer tasting and pub grub, glass of champagne/wine and half a dozen oysters, lunch with glass of wine.)
- Half Day Private Arts St & Shop of Surry Hills & Darlinghurst
(Includes: Coffee or gelato, lunch & Culture Scout bag)
- Shared Luxury Harbor Cruise with progressive lunch at Sydney’s top waterfront restaurants
- Private transfer in Sydney to the rail station
- Private transfer in Adelaide to your hotel
- Full Day Fleurieu Food, Wine and Wildlife tour
(Includes: gourmet lunch, wine tastings and refreshments)
- Private transfer from your Adelaide hotel to the airport
- Private airport transfer in Uluru to Sails in the Desert Hotel
- Sounds of Silence outback dining experience
- Uluru sunrise tour
- Sunset camel ride at Uluru
- Private airport transfer in Uluru to the airport
- Private airport transfer in Cairns to your Port Douglas hotel
- Kuranda Rail Rainforestation Skyrail experience
(Includes: Aussie BBQ lunch, sparkling Australian wine, beer and non-alcoholic beverages)
- Great Barrier Reef outer Reef Platform Cruise and helicopter experience
(Includes: hotel pick-up, morning tea and buffet lunch onboard, snorkeling equipment, semi-submersible, underwater observatory, scenic helicopter flight).
- Private transfer from Port Douglas to Cairns Airport
- International or domestic airfares (unless specified above)
- Meals other than specified above
- Travel insurance