This 10-day Aussie adventure combines outdoor excursions with memorable city tours. Start on the streets of up-and-coming Melbourne, followed by a memorable drive on the Great Ocean Road. Next is Adelaide and wildlife-spotting at Kangaroo Island, a trip to Sydney and the Blue Mountains, then Cairns and the grand finale: sailing the world-famous Great Barrier Reef.


  • Enjoy sightseeing tours of Melbourne, Adelaide, Sydney, and Cairns
  • Travel the Great Ocean Road and see landmarks like the Twelve Apostles
  • Visit Kangaroo Island and marvel at its wide range of native animals
  • Embark on an ocean adventure to the world-famous Great Barrier Reef

Brief Itinerary

Day Highlights Overnight
Day 1 Arrive in Melbourne, Neighborhoods Tour Melbourne
Day 2 Melbourne Laneways Tour, Evening Pub Crawl Melbourne
Day 3 Travel the Great Ocean Road Melbourne
Day 4 Fly to Adelaide, Gastronomy Market Tour Adelaide
Day 5 Day Trip to Kangaroo Island Adelaide
Day 6 Fly to Sydney, Highlights Tour & Harbour Bridge Climb Sydney
Day 7 Day Trip to the Blue Mountains Sydney
Day 8 Fly to Cairns, Evening Aboriginal Culture Experience Cairns
Day 9 Full-Day Sailing & Snorkeling Adventure on the Great Barrier Reef Cairns
Day 10 Depart Cairns  

Detailed Itinerary

Day 1: Arrive in Melbourne, Neighborhoods Tour

Welcome to Melbourne!
Some of Melbourne's coolest neighborhoods overlook the Yarra River

Welcome to Australia! Your grand tour of this massive country/continent begins in Melbourne. Ranked one of the world's most livable cities, the capital of Australia's southern state of Victoria is also raising its global profile for tourism. More and more folks are coming to discover Melbourne's rich culture, trendy neighborhoods, and world-class sporting and culinary scenes.

Upon arrival at the airport, you'll hop on a shuttle for a ride into the city and check into your hotel. Then you'll head out and see Melbourne's colorful neighborhoods on a tour. After meeting your expert guide at the hotel, you'll head over to the South Yarra neighborhood. This upscale neighborhood features trendy boutiques and stylish Art Deco buildings overlooking the Yarra River.

After a walk around, your guide will take you down Chapel Street into Prahran. This attractive area is known for its nightlife, cool bars, and Asian restaurants. Speaking of gastronomy, you'll visit the Prahran Market, which is renowned for its gourmet delis and specialty produce. Afterward, hop in a cab for the 15-minute ride to St Kilda Beach, where you'll finish the tour with a stroll along the esplanade and historic St Kilda Pier. Later, you'll transfer back to your hotel.

Day 2: Melbourne Laneways Tour, Evening Pub Crawl

Stroll Melbourne's historic laneways and visit trendy boutiques and cafés

Leave in the morning on a stroll through Melbourne's beautiful laneways—narrow streets and paths dating to the Victorian era. On this half-day tour, your guide will take you to quintessential shopping arcades and back alleys like the Block Arcade, Centre Place, and AC/DC Lane, where the spirit of rock 'n' roll is alive and well. Marvel at cutting-edge street art, browse the boutiques of local fashion designers, and pass the city's coolest wine bars and pubs. You'll also stop at some quirky cafés and experience Melbourne's famed coffee scene, plus sample artisanal chocolates.

After lunch, you'll have the rest of the day free to relax and enjoy the city. But the adventures aren't over yet. When the sun goes down, you'll meet your guide and head out on a good old-fashioned pub crawl. This three-hour group experience stops at four different bars, all within walking distance of each other. As you hop between each one, you'll make new friends, learn a bit of city lore, and of course, imbibe some tasty beers and spirits. 

Day 3: Travel the Great Ocean Road

Drive the Great Ocean Road for views of stunning rock formations like the Twelve Apostles

Wake up early and embark on a full-day road trip along one of the most scenic coastal routes in the world: the Great Ocean Road. This stretch of highway runs 150 miles (240 km) down Victoria's southwest coast, passing national parks (like Port Campbell), limestone rock formations, seaside bluffs, coastal mountain ranges, and incredible beaches. You'll have ample time to stop and enjoy the highlights, particularly at the seaside towns along the 80-mile (130 km) section known as Shipwreck Coast.

During the drive, keep an eye toward the coast, as you're likely to spot whales and dolphins; on the inland side, you might even see echidnas and bandicoots. Stop for lunch at Apollo Bay, a tranquil seaside town in the rolling coastal hills. You can also stretch your legs on a forest hike through the mountains of the famous Otway Ranges. After visiting the romantic cove at Loch Ard Gorge, cap the adventure at the Twelve Apostles, a group of incredible limestone rock formations rising out of the sea. Afterward, you'll return to Melbourne.

Plan your trip to Australia
Chat with a local specialist who can help organize your trip.

Day 4: Fly to Adelaide, Gastronomy Market Tour

The geometric design of Adelaide maximizes its beauty and green spaces

Your day begins before dawn when you transfer to a launch site and hop in the basket of a hot-air balloon. Then prepare for the thrill of a lifetime as the balloon ascends high over Melbourne, offering panoramic views of the city below. From this birds-eye view, you'll look down on famous landmarks like the Yarra River and the Melbourne Cricket Ground. Even better, you'll watch as the morning sun appears over the horizon and gilds the city's office towers.

Once back on terra firma, meet your driver for the ride to the airport, where you'll catch a 1.5-hour flight northwest to Adelaide. This former British colonial hub is laid out in a grid pattern on the lovely River Torrens and is surrounded by green parklands. It's a progressive city, famous for its many festivals as well as its fine food and wine. Upon arrival at the airport, another driver will pick you up and take you to your hotel in the city. 

Later, you'll join a group for a tour to discover the city's famous cuisine. Led by a local foodie, you'll visit the Adelaide Central Market, a culinary hub in a city famous for its incredible gastronomy. This icon of South Australia was established in 1869 and is home to over 80 vendors selling everything from organic produce and quality meats to fresh seafood and premium coffees. During a 90-minute walk around the market, you'll learn about Adelaide's rich culinary heritage, meet the vendors, taste some artisanal cheeses and fresh produce, and enjoy a gourmet coffee. 

Day 5: Day Trip to Kangaroo Island

Kangaroo Island
Talk a walk alongside the native wildlife on Kangaroo Island

Get an early start as you embark on a full-day wildlife excursion to one of South Australia's highlights: Kangaroo Island. It begins when you leave on a bus from your hotel for a scenic 1.5-hour ride south from Adelaide to Cape Jervis. Here, you'll board the ferry for the 45-minute crossing to the town of Penneshaw and embark on a 4WD tour of this island, a third of which is protected as wildlife reserves. See various animals in their natural environment, including kangaroos, wallabies, koalas, and platypuses.

You'll spend the bulk of the day in and around Flinders Chase National Park on the island's rugged west coast. Here, you can marvel at unique rock formations like Admirals Arch and the granite boulders of Remarkable Rocks. A highlight is enjoying a gourmet picnic lunch in a secluded location paired with local wines. As you eat, watch for koalas in the nearby trees. At the end of the day, you'll transfer back to the mainland by ferry and return to your hotel in Adelaide.

Day 6: Fly to Sydney, Highlights Tour & Harbour Bridge Climb

Sydney is one of the most famous and exciting harbor cities in the world

After breakfast, your driver will pick you up and transfer you to the airport, where you'll catch a two-hour flight to Sydney. This city ticks all the boxes of any great global metropolis: prime harborfront location, iconic landmarks, star attractions, copious beaches, and great shopping, nightlife, and culinary scenes. Upon arrival at the airport, a driver will pick you up and take you to your hotel in the city.

Then get ready to experience the best of Sydney on a half-day tour. It begins in the afternoon when you meet your guide and head out. Start in the historic Rocks area and marvel at 18th-century sandstone architecture, such as Hyde Park Barracks and St Mary's Cathedral. Then head to Mrs Macquaries Point for magnificent Sydney Opera House and Harbour Bridge views. Continue to the coast and The Gap—ocean cliffs with views over the Tasman Sea. Next, stop at the world-famous Bondi Beach for a stroll along the waterfront. Then, return to your hotel on a route through the eastern suburbs. 

In the early evening, you'll not only visit another of Sydney's landmarks but also climb up it. This guided hike up the famous Harbour Bridge begins with a safety demonstration. Then, your expert climb leader will take you up a network of catwalks and ladders that ascend to 439 feet (134 m) above sea level. From this vantage point, you can see east to the Opera House and west to the Blue Mountains. At the top, enjoy the sunset over the harbor, then descend amid the bright lights of Sydney's skyscrapers.

Day 7: Day Trip to the Blue Mountains

The Three Sisters rock formations in the Blue Mountains, near Sydney

About a two-hour drive inland from the urban jungle of Sydney are the dramatic Blue Mountains, a region known for rugged cliffs, eucalyptus forests, and cascading waterfalls. Lace up your hiking boots for a full-day, small-group excursion to see the best of this UNESCO World Heritage Site. After transferring here, you'll visit a working farm and meet local wildlife like kangaroos, emus, wombats, and koalas. Then, hike across valleys and sandstone ridges to viewpoints of the towering Three Sisters rock formations.

As you reach Govetts Leap, one of the country's most famous lookouts, marvel at the sweeping vistas across Grose Valley, Australia's answer to the Grand Canyon. Your final stop is 3,280 feet (1,000 m) above sea level at the Blue Mountains Botanic Garden. Here, you'll see hundreds of international plant species as well as the exotic critters that call this sanctuary home, including various birds, reptiles, and insects. At the end of the day, you'll return to your hotel in Sydney.

Day 8: Fly to Cairns, Evening Aboriginal Culture Experience

Cairns is the gateway to Australia's famous Great Barrier Reef

In the morning, your driver will pick you up and transfer you to the airport, where you'll catch a three-hour flight north to Cairns. This gem of a city is located in the northern state of Queensland, on the shores of Trinity Bay. Sitting just offshore is the UNESCO-listed Great Barrier Reef, one of the world's most popular diving sites. Like many other parts of Australia, this area is also rich in Aboriginal history and culture, which you'll discover after transferring to your hotel.

Later, you'll transfer just north of Cairns to Tjapukai Aboriginal Cultural Park. At this immersive outdoor center, you'll witness Aboriginal culture during an evening of traditional performances, food, and dance. Throughout the experience, you'll meet the Indigenous rainforest people, get your face painted, and follow the Tjapukai warriors to a corroboree (dance ceremony) recounting Aboriginal Dreamtime stories. Then join the Rainbow Serpent circle for some traditional songs, followed by the lighting of the ceremonial fire. The evening culminates with shooting a fireball into the night sky.

Day 9: Full-Day Sailing & Snorkeling Adventure on the Great Barrier Reef

Travel to great snorkeling spots on a high-speed catamaran 

You're in for a treat, as this morning, you'll head to the harbor and board a high-speed catamaran for a full-day cruise to one of the globe's top tourist destinations: the Great Barrier Reef. This UNESCO World Heritage Site boasts more than 3,000 individual reef systems and coral cays, making it the largest in the world. It's home to a wide array of marine life, including around 1,500 species of fish and 400 species of coral—and you'll get to see quite a few of them during snorkeling stops. Also, morning tea and a buffet lunch will be served onboard. At the end of the afternoon, you'll return to your hotel.

Day 10: Depart Cairns

Aerial view of Australia's famous Great Barrier Reef

All good things must come to an end. If you like, wake up early for a stroll on the beach before breakfast. After eating, meet your driver for the ride to the airport in Cairns, where you'll catch your flight home. Come back soon!

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Map of Authentic Aussie Adventure: Melbourne, Adelaide, Sydney & Cairns - 10 Days
Map of Authentic Aussie Adventure: Melbourne, Adelaide, Sydney & Cairns - 10 Days