On this 10-day adventure, visit four cities that offer a mix of sightseeing tours and outdoor excursions. Land in Melbourne and stroll through popular sites, before taking to Great Ocean Road to explore seaside lookouts. Next is Adelaide, which offers museum tours and a trip to Kangaroo Island, decorated with native species. Then, visit Sydney's local landmarks, along with the picturesque Blue Mountains, before the grand finale out of Cairns—a memorable boat tour to the world-famous Great Barrier Reef.

Highlights

  • Go on sightseeing tours in Melbourne, Adelaide, Sydney, and Cairns
  • Travel Great Ocean Road, and stop at lookouts like The Twelve Apostles
  • Visit Kangaroo Island and its wide range of native animal exhibits
  • Embark on a seaside journey through the world-famous Great Barrier Reef

Brief Itinerary

Day Highlights Overnight
Day 1 Arrival in Melbourne Melbourne
Day 2 Melbourne - City Tour Melbourne
Day 3 Travel Great Ocean Road Melbourne
Day 4 Travel to Adelaide Adelaide
Day 5 Adelaide - Day Trip to Kangaroo Island Adelaide
Day 6 Travel to Sydney Sydney
Day 7 Sydney - Blue Mountains Day Tour Sydney
Day 8 Travel to Cairns Cairns
Day 9 Day Trip to the Great Barrier Reef Cairns
Day 10 Departure From Cairns  

Detailed Itinerary

Day 1: Arrival in Melbourne

Welcome to Melbourne!
Welcome to Melbourne!

Upon arrival in Melbourne, proceed through customs and to the designated transfer area for your shuttle to your accommodations. At the hotel, meet with a local representative to go through your Australia itinerary, and the representative will answer any lingering questions. 

The rest of the day is at your leisure. Relax after your international flight or explore the town. If you do a bit of sightseeing, bookmark Flinders Street Station, Federation Square, Queen Victoria Markets, and the Royal Botanical Gardens, to start. Since Melbourne is the cultural capital of Australia, expect funky street art and bohemian coffee shops tucked in many corners of the town. 

The evening is at your leisure to enjoy a nice welcome dinner, along with exploring the local bar and pub scene—maybe even catch some live music.

Day 2: Melbourne - City tour

One of Melbourne's many hidden lanes
One of Melbourne's many hidden lanes

Today, tour more of Melbourne, beginning in Federation Square. The Lanes and Arcades walking tour is the ideal way to learn about the town and its history. 

On the tour, discover designers and specialty retailers that are often only found in the city. Locate some of the quirkiest cafes, independent designers, street art, architecture, and hear historical tales of Melbourne along the way.

After the tour ends, make your way back to the hotel, and enjoy dinner at your leisure.

Day 3: Travel Great Ocean Road

The Twelve Apostles
The Twelve Apostles

Spend the day driving the famed Great Ocean Road. Admire Victoria's dramatic southern coastline and stop in several seaside towns along the rugged Shipwreck Coast. During the journey, pass through surf beaches, whale lookouts, lush rainforests, and scenic mountain ranges.

There are plenty of photo stops along the way. Drive to Port Campbell National Park, the site of The Twelve Apostles, which features a grouping of limestone stacks formed over the centuries by the pounding surf. Just a few minutes west of here is Loch Ard, a gorge so scenic and primeval that it has served as the setting for numerous movies and TV shows, such as Journey to the Center of the Earth.

Then, head back to Melbourne to take in the views of the panoramic inland. The evening is yours to enjoy on your own.

Day 4: Travel to Adelaide

Adelaide at Sunset
Adelaide at Sunset

This morning, transfer to the Melbourne domestic airport to board your flight to Adelaide.  Upon arrival into Adelaide, find your transfer, who will take you to the hotel.

This afternoon, discover Adelaide at your own leisure. Adelaide is South Australia’s cosmopolitan coastal capital. The River Torrens is home to renowned museums, such as the Art Gallery of South Australia. On display are expansive collections, including notable indigenous artworks. In addition, the South Australian Museum is a landmark to explore that is devoted to natural history.

Enjoy the evening in Adelaide at your leisure.

Day 5: Adelaide - Day trip to Kangaroo Island

Kangaroo Island
Kangaroo Island

Depart Adelaide and travel by motorcoach and ferry to Kangaroo Island, or "KI," as the locals know it. Within KI, there are several worthwhile exhibits to check out, which include the below:

  • Visit Seal Bay with a local park ranger to view a colony of rare Australian sea lions
  • Explore Flinders Chase National Park, a sanctuary for Australian animals, including kangaroos, wallabies, and koalas
  • Walk on the Remarkable Rocks with stunning views of the sea
  • Stroll to Admirals Arch stone formation to visit a colony of New Zealand fur seals

Return to Adelaide late in the night, and relax after a full day experiencing KI.

Day 6: Travel to Sydney

An aerial view of Sydney
An aerial view of Sydney

This morning, transfer from Adelaide to Sydney. A shuttle transfer will pick you up from the arrivals area and transfer you to your accommodation.

In the afternoon, embark on a local sightseeing tour. Visit many notable destinations around Sydney, such as the historic area known as The Rocks and Mrs Macquarie’s Chair for scenic views of the harbor. Continue on past Kings Cross and Double Bay, through to Watson’s Bay and the famous Bondi Beach, where you will have free time to discover the area.

Enjoy your evening at leisure.  Consider visiting the Sydney Tower Restaurant and enjoy 360° views of the city as it lights up at night.

Day 7: Sydney - Blue Mountains Day tour

Blue Mountains
Blue Mountains

The Blue Mountains Day is a journey into the heart of a unique UNESCO World Heritage region.

The first stop on the tour is Calmsley Hill Farm. Enjoy morning tea, and then interact with the local animals; pet a koala and hand-feed kangaroos, wallabies, and emus. Travel through picturesque villages and view spectacular scenery and waterfalls.  Enjoy a short walk to a lookout point and listen for the sounds of the unique Australian forest species.

Then, indulge in lunch with valley views, and choose what to eat based on the special menu provided.

In the afternoon, visit a selection of scenic lookouts—the view from Govett’s Leap is one of the most famous in Australia. Here, the waterfall drops an impressive 591 feet to the base of the cliff.

The last stop is the Mt Tomah Botanic Gardens. Make a brief stop to enjoy the views of the 69-acre public space, along with a refreshment, before traveling back to your hotel. 

Day 8: Travel to Cairns

Tjapukai at night
Tjapukai at night

This morning, transfer to the airport to catch a flight to Cairns. Upon arrival, collect your luggage and travel to your hotel.

This evening, enjoy the Tjapukai Aboriginal Cultural Park with a night fire dinner. The night fire is Tjapukai’s signature evening activity, where you will meet the indigenous rainforest people, who paint your face to link you to their traditional land and culture. Follow the Tjapukai warriors to a corroboree celebrating Aboriginal Dreamtime stories and join the Rainbow Serpent circle to learn traditional-language songs before the ceremonial fire is lit with a fireball shooting toward the stars.

Day 9: Day trip to the Great Barrier Reef

The Great Barrier Reef
The Great Barrier Reef

Board a high-speed catamaran for a full-day cruise to the Great Barrier Reef.  One of Australia’s most remarkable natural gifts, the Great Barrier Reef is the world’s largest coral reef. The reef contains an abundance of marine life and is home to more than 3,000 individual reef systems and coral cays. Surrounding the reef are hundreds of picturesque tropical islands that contain some of the best golden beaches. The Great Barrier Reef is one of the world's most sought-after tourist destinations.

Enjoy morning tea and a lunch buffet aboard the catamaran. Following the reef tour and some snorkeling, return to your hotel in the late afternoon, and enjoy the evening at your leisure.

Day 10: Departure from Cairns

Farewell from Cairns!
Farewell from Cairns!

Enjoy the morning to unwind and reflect on your trip to Australia before transferring to the airport for your departure flight home.

Take with you all the new memories from your trip Down Under, and come back soon!

Map

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