This fast-paced Australia itinerary squeezes high-class city fun and barefoot luxury into just 10 days. Dine at top restaurants in creative Melbourne and drive the Great Ocean Road, then escape to Kangaroo Island, where peace, wildlife, and natural landscapes await. Taste world-class wines in Adelaide, cruise Sydney Harbour at sunset, helicopter to the Hunter Valley for a luxe winery lunch, and spend your final days disconnected from it all on the remote and lush Lord Howe Island.


  • Relax at 5-star hotels and luxury nature retreats
  • Indulge with private food and wine experiences in Melbourne and Adelaide
  • Engage with native Australian wildlife on Kangaroo Island
  • Cruise Sydney Harbour at sunset and helicopter to the Hunter Valley
  • Escape to the remote, wild, and exclusive Lord Howe Island

Brief Itinerary

Day Highlights Overnight
Day 1 Arrive in Melbourne, Laneways & Alleyways Tour, Fine Dining Experience Melbourne
Day 2 Scenic Great Ocean Road Day Trip Melbourne
Day 3 Fly to Kangaroo Island, Southern Ocean Experiences Kangaroo Island
Day 4 Customized Kangaroo Island Experiences Kangaroo Island
Day 5 Fly to Adelaide, Evening Wine, Dine & Discover Walk Adelaide
Day 6 Fly to Sydney, Half-Day City Tour & Deluxe Sunset Cruise Sydney
Day 7 Hunter Valley Helicopter Lunch Tour, Twilight BridgeClimb Sydney
Day 8 Fly to Lord Howe Island, Glass Bottom Boat Tour, Island Barbecue Dinner  Lord Howe Island
Day 9 Malabar Walk, Dive the Admiralty Islands Lord Howe Island
Day 10 Fly to Sydney, Depart  

Detailed Itinerary

Day 1: Arrive in Melbourne, Laneways & Alleyways Tour, Fine Dining Experience

 Melbourne Laneways and Alleyways Private Tour
Dive into Melbourne's laneway culture on a private tour today

G'day and welcome! You've landed in Melbourne, the cultural capital of Australia. On arrival, meet your private driver, who will transfer you to the luxurious 5-star QT Melbourne. This edgy, industrial-chic hotel captures the city's creative side and vibrant spirit, making the perfect base for your two nights in the city. Drop your bags and refresh, then get lost in Melbourne's back streets, laneways, and arcades. This city is famous for its laneway culture, and on a three-hour private walk, you'll discover local designers and specialty retailers, quirky cafés, and cool street art.

Return to the hotel to change ahead of a self-guided culinary adventure, starting with a sky-high lunch at Vue de Monde. From the 55th floor, you'll soak up a breathtaking view of the city. After, sit down for a traditional high tea at the Hotel Windsor, then take a leisurely stroll along the Yarra River to prime your appetite. Finally, sit down for a luxe experience at Attica, one of Australia's top-rated restaurants, where chef Ben Shewry is known for creating innovative and cutting-edge dishes that tell a story about Australian culture.

Day 2: Scenic Great Ocean Road Day Trip

The Twelve Apostles - Great Ocean Road
Experience one of the greatest scenic drives in the world today on the Great Ocean Road

Wake up early and embark on an epic day 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, limestone rock formations, seaside bluffs, coastal mountain ranges, and incredible beaches. This is a full-day, 11-hour private day trip in which you'll have ample time to stop and enjoy the highlights. 

Keep an eye toward the coast throughout the drive, 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 set among the rolling coastal hills. You can stretch your legs on a forest hike through the mountains of the famous Otway Ranges. You'll also visit the romantic cove at Loch Ard Gorge, then cap the adventure at the most incredible natural landmarks on the route: the Twelve Apostles, a group of ancient limestone rock formations rising out of the sea. 

Day 3: Fly to Kangaroo Island, Southern Ocean Experiences

Experience quiet luxury that blends seamlessly with its surroundings (photo courtesy of Southern Ocean Lodge)
Plan your trip to Australia
Chat with a local specialist who can help organize your trip.

Today, your final destination is the gorgeous Kangaroo Island, a place sometimes called "Australia's Galápagos" due to its incredible wildlife and landscapes. A private driver will transfer you to Melbourne airport for your one-stop flight to the island via Adelaide. By early afternoon, you'll reach Southern Ocean Lodge, a resort celebrated worldwide as a pioneer in experiential luxury. Enjoy welcome drinks on arrival and a late lunch, then settle into your deluxe room.

This afternoon, you can get your bearings on the landscape with a guided Coastal Clifftop Walk. Stare out to sea, knowing the next stop on the horizon is Antarctica, and listen as the passionate guide shares insights into the native ecology as you wander. Later, journey out to a bushland sanctuary near the lodge for Southern Sundowners. An architecturally designed viewing platform sets the stage for sunset, which you'll enjoy with a drink in hand, waiting patiently as local wildlife venture out at dusk to graze.

Day 4: Customized Kangaroo Island Experiences

Discover Kangaroo Island with Southern Ocean's Experiences
Kangaroo Island is a wild paradise, and today can be customized to your interests

Southern Ocean Lodge is located conveniently in the heartland between Flinders Chase National Park and Seal Bay Conservation Park. Today, you'll explore this natural wonderland on a private guided tour of both, which you can customize to suit your interests. You could begin your day wandering among sea lions lazing in the dunes at Seal Bay, then later watch as marsupials emerge at dusk to graze in the wilderness. Explore the Flinders Chase National Park to witness its natural wonders, such as the iconic Remarkable Rocks, then take a guided walk along the coastal clifftops. 

If you're a foodie at heart, request an epicurean adventure and sample some of Kangaroo Island's premium wines, spirits, and craft beers, then explore the island's burgeoning art scene, where you'll visit several creative studios and galleries, and even meet some of the artists. For something more low-key, you could join a gentle guided hike, borrow electric bikes, indulge in a spa treatment, or curl up with a good book and a drink from the help-yourself bar. Finally, sit down for an early dinner at the lodge's restaurant and dine with a magnificent sunset view. 

Day 5: Fly to Adelaide, Evening Wine, Dine & Discover Walk

Evening Wine, Dine & Discover by Foot (Private)
Discover the secrets of Adelaide's bar scene with this evening's culinary walking tour

Enjoy a slow breakfast at the lodge, sampling local goodies, including free-range eggs, Ligurian honey from the island's hives, smoked salmon, cured meats, and lodge-made pastries. Breathe in your final moments of remote island life; then, it's time to say goodbye to Kangaroo Island. A private transfer will take you back to the airport for your short return flight to Adelaide, the capital of South Australia and a small, progressive city renowned for its many festivals, fine food, and world-class wine. On arrival, another private driver will transfer you to the heritage-listed 5-star Mayfair Hotel

Settle in, refresh, then set out this evening for a private culinary walking tour. Start at one of the city's lesser-known local wine bars for an introduction to the region's best wines over snacks. Wander Adelaide's back streets, admiring the architecture, street art, and atmosphere on the way to the next location: a hidden bar to discover local spirits and creative cocktails. Hear about local laws and legends, the saints, sinners, innovators, and creators who have shaped this unique Australian city. Finish with a local digestive and delicious fresh cheese or sweet treats at a local institution.

Day 6: Fly to Sydney, Half-Day City Tour & Deluxe Sunset Cruise

You'll experience the icons of Sydney from above, from land, and from the water today

It's time to switch to Australia's most famous city: Sydney. A private driver will transfer you to the airport for the two-hour flight. On arrival, another private driver will transfer you to your accommodation, the elegant 5-star Shangri-La Sydney. Hovering high above Sydney's glittering icons, take in views of the harbor, Sydney Opera House, and Sydney Harbour Bridge from above. Refresh and get ready for a half-day adventure.

A private guide will connect you with Sydney's greatest sights and stories, starting in The Rocks, Sydney's oldest suburb, where you'll learn about Australia's colonial convict history. Visit Macquarie Street and Mrs Macquaries Chair, then journey around the southern shores, bays, and coves of Sydney Harbour. Pause for tea and coffee with Tim Tams, a famous Australian cookie, then say g'day to brilliant Bondi Beach, where golden sands and bronzed lifesavers await. On your return to the city, you'll pass by Tamarama and Bronte beaches, Paddington, Darlinghurst, and more.

Return to your hotel to grab a jacket ahead of a deluxe private sunset cruise on Sydney Harbour. Step aboard a luxury yacht and enjoy a two-hour sunset cruise where you'll watch day turn to night as you cruise the waters. Your captain and host will share the rich history of the city as you pass famous landmarks, from the Opera House and Royal Botanic Gardens to the picturesque bays of Woolloomooloo, Double Bay, and Mosman.

Day 7: Hunter Valley Helicopter Lunch Tour, Twilight BridgeClimb

Private Hunter Valley Helicopter Lunch Tours
Keep an eye out for kangaroos in the vineyards on today's helicopter trip to the famed Hunter Valley

Wave goodbye to Sydney temporarily as you zip over to the Hunter Valley in a private helicopter. Australia's oldest wine-growing region is home to more than 150 vineyards, and on today's tour, you'll sip, swill, and sample your way through all things local. On takeoff, you'll fly past the Sydney Harbour Bridge, the Opera House, and over the city's glistening northern beaches before turning inland. Zip over the Central Coast, where the vineyards will finally appear. After landing, you'll sit down for a gourmet lunch at one of the top Hunter Valley restaurants, enjoying the finest fresh produce paired with local wines.

Back in Sydney, another thrilling adventure awaits that will take you to great heights. As dusk hits, you'll ascend the summit of the world's largest steel arch, the Sydney Harbour Bridge. With a twilight BridgeClimb, you'll experience spectacular 360-degree views as you walk across catwalks, ascend ladders, and celebrate from the top of the famous "coathanger," which reaches 439 feet (134 m) above sea level. Return to the ground and seek out a special dinner at one of Australia's top restaurants: Quay, Aria, or Bennelong.

Day 8: Fly to Lord Howe Island, Glass Bottom Boat Tour, Island Barbecue Dinner 

Welcome to Lord Howe Island
Lush and wild Lord Howe Island offers a nature-filled escape from reality (photo courtesy of Capella Lodge)

Located in the Tasman Sea between Australia and New Zealand, Lord Howe Island is known for its pristine blue waters, lush forest, volcanic peaks, and a distinctive style of "barefoot luxury." After breakfast, a private driver will take you to the airport for your two-hour flight to this secluded paradise. On arrival at the tiny island airport, you'll be met by managers of the luxurious Capella Lodge, the ultimate island castaway escape. The small island has just 350 residents and allows only 400 visitors at any time. Enter the lodge and enjoy welcome drinks before settling into your deluxe suite.

This afternoon, you'll get a taste of Lord Howe's vibrant marine life with a glass-bottom boat tour of the lagoon. Over two hours, you'll admire diverse corals and tropical fish, and at one point, you'll be able to dive in to snorkel around shipwrecks. Look for the endemic doubleheader wrasse, stingrays, and turtles too. Dry off, then pick up your barbecue pack and venture down to a scenic beach destination for one of Lord Howe's legendary sunsets. Grill up your feast on your own wood-fired barbecue, island style, while soaking in sparkling views, carefree vibes, and blissful views.

Day 9: Malabar Walk, Dive the Admiralty Islands

Malabar Walk
Take in sweeping views south over Lord Howe Island from the Malabar lookout

After a leisurely and hearty breakfast at Capella Lodge, you'll lace up your sneakers for a half-day self-guided walk. There's no mobile phone reception on Lord Howe, so the best way to experience the island is to switch off and dive into nature. One of the most popular walks is the Malabar track, starting from Ned's Beach Road and climbing to the top of a long mountain ridge. Soak up the famous views of Ned's Beach, the lagoon, and the mountains. The trail takes two hours, so you can be back in time for lunch.

In the afternoon, you'll set off for an underwater adventure to Australia's acclaimed diving sites at the Admiralty Islands. This captivating group of volcanic formations is thriving with coral reefs and schooling fish. Experience a round-island boat tour, or dive into the deep en route to Ball's Pyramid. Return to Capella Lodge in time for the daily sunset drinks and canapés on Gowers Terrace before enjoying your final dinner at the lodge restaurant, where the menu showcases local produce with island-inspired cuisine.

Day 10: Fly to Sydney, Depart

Squeeze in one last swim at Lord Howe Island before your departing flight (photo courtesy of Capella Lodge)

Your 10-day luxury Australian adventure comes to an end today. Enjoy a final leisurely breakfast at Capella Lodge, then pack your bags. You may have time before your departing flight to squeeze in one final activity. You could walk or cycle to visit the huge banyan trees and endemic kentia palm forests on the east coast or pedal downtown to swim in the blue lagoon and visit the island museum. 

When the time is right you'll take a transfer to the airport for your departing flight to Sydney. From Sydney, you can catch your international flight home or onward. Safe travels!

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Map of Ultimate Australian Luxury Escape: Melbourne to Lord Howe Island - 10 Days
Map of Ultimate Australian Luxury Escape: Melbourne to Lord Howe Island - 10 Days