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Australia & New Zealand

Wondrous Australia & New Zealand

Make your way to Australia & New Zealand and discover these gems…

    • Sydney – Opera House and Sydney Harbour Bridge!
    • Alice Springs – visit the Australia’s Outback!
    • Kangaroo Island – a pristine wilderness for native animals!
    • Great Barrier Reef – snorkel Earth’s largest living thing!
    • Ayers Rock – take in the sight of sacred Uluru!
    • New Zealand’s South Island – dramatic and stunning fjords!
    • Queenstown NZ – the “Adventure Capital of the World!”
    • Matamata NZ – visit the Hobbiton movie set!
    • … and MORE! – call us to customize your adventure!

Below are sample vacation itineraries.
Contact us to discuss your dream vacation and current selections!

Escape to Australia & New Zealand

dive into the Great Barrier Reef on a Royal Caribbean cruise
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Sample Vacations

 
Great Adventure Down Under – with Globus

Please Note: This itinerary is an example only. Like the idea? Contact us and discuss current vacation options and promotions.

 Example Itinerary Map

27 days from Melbourne to Auckland

 Day 1: Melbourne, Australia

G’day—welcome to Melbourne, Australia’s second-largest city. Hotel rooms are available for immediate check-in. This evening, your Tour Director hosts a welcome dinner at your hotel. (Dinner)

 Day 2: Melbourne

Today’s sightseeing tour includes landmarks such as Parliament House and the Shrine of Remembrance, a tribute to Australia’s war heroes. Visit beautiful FITZROY GARDENS, then drive past the lush Royal Botanic Gardens. You’ll discover the city’s differing architectural influences as you see the Victorian Arts Centre and other buildings of significance. Enjoy a truly unique lunch experience on board the historic Local Favorite COLONIAL TRAMCAR RESTAURANT as it winds its way through the streets of Melbourne. Tonight’s optional excursion to see the world-famous Penguin Parade on Phillip Island is highly recommended. (Breakfast, Lunch)

 Day 3: Melbourne

Enjoy a full day at leisure to explore this multicultural and cosmopolitan city. Dine at a local restaurant and immerse yourself in Melbourne’s passionate food and wine scene or walk along Chapel and Brunswick Streets, famous for great shopping. Take a trip out of town to sample award-winning wines in the Yarra Valley or drive along the spectacular Great Ocean Road to see the “Twelve Apostles.” (Breakfast)

 Day 4: Hobart, Tasmania

Fly to Hobart, Tasmania, home of the famed Tasmanian Devil. (Breakfast)

 Day 5: Hobart

Today’s tour of the scenic Tasman Peninsula features the blowhole, the Devil’s Kitchen, and the Tasman Arch coastal formations. Visit PORT ARTHUR, which began housing convicts in the 1830s. A guided tour of the penal settlement shows you the ruins of the 4-story penitentiary and the model prison—grim reminders of Australia’s days as a penal colony. Also stop at the TASMANIAN DEVIL CONSERVATION PARK to see the famous Tasmanian Devil, the world’s largest carnivorous marsupial. (Breakfast, Lunch)

 Day 6: Adelaide

Today, fly to Adelaide (via Melbourne). Upon arrival, take a brief orientation tour along the wide tree-lined streets and well-manicured gardens. The remainder of the afternoon and evening are at your leisure. (Breakfast)

 Day 7: Adelaide

Early this morning, depart Adelaide and travel by motorcoach and ferry to Local Favorite KANGAROO ISLAND, one of the world’s last unspoiled habitats. Visit SEAL BAY with a national park ranger to see a colony of rare Australian sea lions. Explore FLINDERS CHASE NATIONAL PARK, a sanctuary for native Australian animals, including kangaroos, wallabies, and koalas. Stop here for a walk on REMARKABLE ROCKS, with stunning views of the sea. You will also take a boardwalk down a rugged cliff face to ADMIRALS ARCH, a unique rock formation and home to a colony of New Zealand fur seals, which can be seen resting on the rocks and playing in the waves. Return to Adelaide late this evening. (Breakfast, Lunch)

 Day 8: Adelaide / The Ghan Train

This morning, enjoy free time to relax. Later, a highlight of your vacation begins as you board the GHAN TRAIN for an overnight journey that offers a fascinating perspective of the Outback. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

 Day 9: The Ghan Train / Alice Springs

You are scheduled to arrive in Alice Springs midday. Upon arrival, visit the ROYAL FLYING DOCTOR SERVICE and the SCHOOL OF THE AIR to appreciate how medical and education services are provided to those living in remote regions. Then, on to Anzac Hill, a tribute to the war heroes of Australia and New Zealand. You will also visit the historic OLD TELEGRAPH STATION to learn how early settlers developed communications. This evening, enjoy a truly unique Aussie experience — a Local Favorite OUTBACK BARBECUE featuring a meal of typical campfire fare, fascinating tales of the Outback, and Aboriginal folklore. (Breakfast, Dinner)

 Day 10: Uluru (Ayers Rock)

Today, fly to the “Center of Australia.” Travel to a popular lookout to enjoy views of the magnificent Kata Tjuta (the Olgas), a geological splendor of some 36 brilliant domes. There is time to take photos before returning to “Sunset Strip” for a DRINK and the changing colors of the rock. (Breakfast)

 Day 11: Uluru (Ayers Rock) / Darwin

Your Outback adventure continues this morning. For an unforgettable experience, you may choose to rise early for an optional camel ride to watch the sunrise at Uluru. Then, enjoy a TOUR around the base of Uluru, learning of its significance to the Anangu Aboriginal people. Later, fly to Darwin (via Alice Springs) and enjoy an orientation tour. (Breakfast)

 Day 12: Kakadu National Park

After time at leisure in the morning, depart your hotel for KAKADU NATIONAL PARK. Stop at WINDOWS ON THE WETLANDS VISITOR CENTRE & BOWALI VISITOR CENTRE to see interactive displays on Kakadu habitats and fauna. Dinner tonight is at your hotel. (Breakfast, Dinner)

 Day 13: Kakadu National Park

Explore parts of nearly 7,300 square miles of unspoiled waterways with a rich heritage of Aboriginal culture. Globus Local FavoriteGlobus Local Favorite CRUISE the wetlands, where you may see crocodiles, and walk ancient trails to see Aboriginal rock petroglyphs at NOURLANGIE ROCK. An optional light-aircraft flight over the park should not be missed. (Breakfast, Lunch)

Please Note: During the wet season (December through April), it can be difficult to see crocodiles in the wild.

 Day 14: Darwin / Cairns

Return to Darwin for sightseeing. See the elegant colonial architecture of the city’s historic buildings that survived Cyclone Tracy in 1974. Visit the splendid BOTANIC GARDENS and beautiful East Point, an area rich in WWII memorabilia. Also visit the ART GALLERY to view fine collections of Aboriginal art. Later, fly to Cairns, “Gateway to the Great Barrier Reef,” one of the Seven Natural Wonders of the World. (Breakfast)

 Day 15: Cairns / Great Barrier Reef

Board a fast catamaran and CRUISE to Green Island, one of the many tropical islands on Australia’s famous Great Barrier Reef. Here you can choose to SNORKEL, take a GLASS-BOTTOM BOAT TOUR, or walk through the island’s cool rainforest. This afternoon, your Tour Director can assist you with a variety of optional activities. (Breakfast, Dinner)

 Day 16: Cairns

A full day at leisure in this tropical paradise. For a truly amazing experience, consider our optional trip to Kuranda via the old scenic rail route. See magnificent scenery from the comfort of a restored, historic mountain train. For the return journey, you may choose to take the Skyrail Rainforest Cableway—or maybe spend the day in the magical Daintree Rainforest, thought to be the planet’s oldest surviving tropical rainforest. (Breakfast)

 Day 17: Sydney

This morning, enjoy a special visit to CAIRNS TROPICAL ZOO for your chance to meet Australia’s native animals. You’ll also enjoy breakfast in the park, a talk by a wildlife keeper, and the opportunity to have your picture taken with a koala! Afterward, fly to Sydney, the largest city
in Australia. (Breakfast)

 Day 18: Sydney

Explore one of the world’s most beautiful cities. Visit the SYDNEY OPERA HOUSE, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, for a guided tour of its interior and theaters. Travel to Mrs. Macquarie’s Chair in the city’s BOTANIC GARDENS for a great photo opportunity and sweeping views of the harbor, Opera House, and Harbour Bridge. Visit world-famous Bondi Beach for an insider’s tour of Local Favorite BONDI SURF BATHERS’ LIFE SAVING CLUB with one of the lifesavers. Along the way, learn the history of the club and enjoy a lifesaving demonstration! See some of the city’s suburbs and the historic Rocks area, home to Sydney’s original convicts. For a truly memorable experience, enjoy lunch as you CRUISE on Sydney Harbour. (Breakfast, Lunch)

 Day 19: Sydney

Enjoy a full day at leisure. Perhaps join our optional excursions to the Blue Mountains or to the Hunter Valley, one of Australia’s leading wine-growing regions. You can even climb to the top of Sydney’s Harbour Bridge! Your Tour Director will help you make the most of this exciting city. Tonight, enjoy a special dinner at WATERFRONT RESTAURANT with fantastic views of the highlights of Sydney. (Breakfast, Dinner)

 Day 20: Christchurch, New Zealand

Fly across the Tasman Sea to Christchurch, the largest city on New Zealand’s South Island. (Breakfast, Dinner)

 Day 21: Mount Cook / Queenstown

Drive south to magnificent MOUNT COOK NATIONAL PARK, named after New Zealand’s highest peak. Stop at the SIR EDMUND HILLARY ALPINE CENTER for unique insight into the history and culture of this region. Afterward, continue to Queenstown, the “Adventure Capital of the World.” (Breakfast)

 Day 22: Queenstown & Milford Sound

Today, travel into FIORDLAND NATIONAL PARK through the Homer Tunnel to Milford Sound. Boasting some of the most breathtaking scenery in the world, this region of New Zealand has been honored as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. CRUISE on the fjord, with sheer rock walls rising thousands of feet from the water’s great depths. (Breakfast, Lunch)

 Day 23: Queenstown

A full day at leisure for your own discoveries. Consider an optional visit to a local vineyard and sample some of the prize vintages, or maybe a thrilling jet-boat ride on the Kawarau and Dart Rivers. Your Tour Director will have suggestions to help you plan your day to explore, shop, and enjoy optional activities. This evening, CRUISE across Lake Wakatipu on board the vintage steamship TSS Earnslaw and take in views of the rugged Southern Alps. Stop at Walter Peak High Country Farm for DINNER and a FARM DEMONSTRATION that provides a glimpse of life on the farm. (Breakfast, Dinner)

 Day 24: Rotorua

Fly north to Rotorua. This evening, enjoy a traditional Local Favorite HANGI DINNER, followed by an authentic MAORI CONCERT. (Breakfast, Dinner)

 Day 25: Rotorua

This morning, start with a visit to the AGRODOME to learn more about one of the country’s major industries—sheep! Continue on to RAINBOW SPRINGS to view native bush and wildlife, including a walk through the kiwi bird enclosure. Last stop is TE PUIA, Rotorua’s most prominent thermal area with New Zealand’s largest geyser, boiling mud pools, and silica terraces. The afternoon and evening are at your leisure. You may wish to board a floatplane for flightseeing of this beautiful area, join a New Zealand family for dinner in their home, or indulge yourself in the relaxing hot springs, sumptuous spa treatments, and massage therapies at the Polynesian Spa. (Breakfast)

 Day 26: Waitomo / Auckland

Leave Rotorua and cross the Mamaku Ranges to the famous WAITOMO GLOWWORM CAVES. Experience a guided tour through the limestone chambers and passages of the cavern. Take a silent boat trip through Glowworm Grotto as you glide quietly beneath the lights of thousands of glowworms suspended from the cave ceiling. Continue on to Auckland. This evening, your Tour Director hosts a farewell dinner. (Breakfast, Dinner)

 Day 27: Auckland

Your tour ends with breakfast this morning. (Breakfast)


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Arranging Your Land Tour Vacation

Whether it’s your first time on an escorted tour, or prefer to venture out independently, Oddball Escapes has great relationships with top names in the Land Tour industry: Globus, Cosmos, Trafalgar, Brendan Tours, G Adventures, Avanti Destinations, and Monograms. With such a network, Oddball makes it easy to find a Land Tour that fits your tastes. Contact us to plan your Land Vacation.

Active New Zealand – with G Adventures

Please Note: This itinerary is an example only. Like the idea? Contact us and discuss current vacation options and promotions.

 Example Itinerary Map

21 days from Auckland to Wellington

 Day 1: Auckland, New Zealand

Arrive at any time.

 Day 2: Auckland / Hahei

Enjoy a morning cycle through Karangahake Gorge, then travel onto Hahei for the afternoon.

 Day 3: Hahei / Rotorua

Visit a geothermal area with boiling mud and hotpools. After a traditional greeting on the Marae, learn the arts of the Haka and Poi before a traditional Hangi dinner.

 Day 4: Tongariro National Park

Conquer the Tongariro Alpine Crossing, New Zealand’s top-rated 1-day trek and spend the afternoon on an active volcano.

 Day 5: Whanganui National Park

Canoe along the Whanganui River to your overnight camp in the heart of Whanganui National Park. Enjoy a dinner brought in from the wild.

 Day 6: Whanganui NP / Raetihi

Continue along the Whanganui River by jet boat visiting old Maori and European settlements before continuing on to Snowy Waters Lodge by bus.

 Day 7: Wellington

In the morning, transfer to Wellington and visit the Te Papa museum, dedicated to the history and culture of New Zealand.

 Day 8: Abel Tasman National Park

Travel by ferry to the South Island and then transfer by water taxi into Abel Tasman National Park.

 Day 9: Abel Tasman NP / Marahau

Sea kayak in Abel Tasman out to the edge of the park before joining a short transfer to Marahau.

 Day 10: Paparoa National Park

Transfer to Paparoa National Park, and enjoy a trek in the park.

 Day 11: Franz Josef

Transfer to Franz Josef, stopping at Okarito lagoon en route. Opt to go glacier trekking in Franz Josef.

 Day 12: Franz Josef

A free day for optional activities. Options include various hikes, horseback riding, quad biking as well as the unique and stunning Franz Josef Glacier.

 Day 13: Makarora

Transfer to Makarora, where there are a variety of optional activities available. Opt to hike, go an a jet boat excursion or take a scenic flight.

 Day 14: Queenstown

Travel into the heart of Central Otago, stopping at the resort town of Wanaka. Continue onto the “adventure capital of the world,” Queenstown.

 Day 15: Queenstown

Free day to enjoy the city.

 Day 16: Milford Sound

Continue to the fjords of the South Island. Enjoy the stunning scenery of Fiordland National Park and Milford Sound from the deck of a boat.

 Day 17: Te Anau

Continue onto Te Anau and explore the area surrounding the South Island’s largest lake with the option to hike, bike or explore the Te Anau glowworm caves.

 Day 18: Te Anau

Morning departure to Central Otago to spend the afternoon cycling 42km (26 mi) along the Historic Otago Rail Trail.

 Day 19: Christchurch

Drive through breathtaking central Otago via the Lindis Pass and Mt Cook, New Zealand’s highest peak. Arrive in Christchurch for the evening.

 Day 20: Kaikoura

Transfer to Kaikoura, with optional whale- or dolphin-watching in the afternoon.

 Day 21: Wellington

Transfer to Picton and visit a seal colony along the way before taking the ferry back to Wellington where the tour ends upon arrival.


cycle, hike, and kayak with G Adventures
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Arranging Your Land Tour Vacation

Whether it’s your first time on an escorted tour, or prefer to venture out independently, Oddball Escapes has great relationships with top names in the Land Tour industry: Globus, Cosmos, Trafalgar, Brendan Tours, G Adventures, Avanti Destinations, and Monograms. With such a network, Oddball makes it easy to find a Land Tour that fits your tastes. Contact us to plan your Land Vacation.

16 Nights Australia & New Zealand – with Royal Caribbean

Please Note: This itinerary is an example only. Like the idea? Contact us and discuss current vacation options and promotions.

 Example Itinerary Map

16 nights from Sydney to Perth

 Day 1: Sydney, Australia

Welcome aboard Radiance of the Seas. What’s not to love about Sydney? Home to some of the friendliest people, countless museums, galleries, world-class restaurants, and of course, the sprawling Outback, Sydney is a true adventure wonderland that no one can resist.

 Day 2: Cruising

Enjoy onboard entertainment at sea. Whether you seek an adrenaline rush or total tranquility, our ships have it all. Try rock climbing, ice skating and surfing 200 feet above the waves. Melt away land-based stress with a spa massage, build a scrapbook of memories or simply relax poolside.

 Day 3: Cruising

Enjoy onboard entertainment at sea. Onboard, dining is about more than just food. Think ambience, variety and the flexibility to decide when and what you savor.

 Day 4: Wellington, New Zealand

Wellington embraces its reputation as a cool “little” capital. Downtown is compact but there’s no shortage of big-city culture. The charm extends to the surrounding green hillsides while countryside and rugged coast are within easy reach.

 Day 5: Akaroa, New Zealand

Set on a beautiful harbor, Akaroa is a quaint resort town with unique French heritage. It’s your gateway to Christchurch and amazing South Island nature, from the volcanic Banks Peninsula to the mountains of the Southern Alps.

 Day 6: Dunedin, New Zealand

Dunedin proudly celebrates its Scottish heritage but gold-rush fortunes are behind its grand Victorian and Edwardian architecture. From here you can also explore the Otago Peninsula, home to penguin colonies and scenic coastline.

 Day 7: Cruise New Zealand's Sounds

Dusky Sound
Part of New Zealand’s Fiorland National Park, Dusky Sound was long the site of Maori camps but few permanent settlements. Captain Cook spent five weeks exploring the dramatic coastline that edges the mountainous wilderness.

Doubtful Sound
You can only experience the grand scenery and tranquility of this magnificent fjord by boat. Doubtful Sound sustains an amazing array of wildlife. In the rainy season, its steep hills are covered with hundreds of waterfalls.

Milford Sound
The Maori believed a divine mason carved Milford Sound. The fjord is a geological wonder of the ice age, where waterfalls cascade over sheer cliffs into the dark waters below and mountains dominated by Mitre Peak reach toward the sky.

 Day 8: Cruising

Enjoy onboard entertainment at sea. When our ships hit the high seas, the excitement of Casino Royale® kicks off. Try your hand at our card tables, spin to win at roulette, and hit it big time with the pull of a slot machine.

 Day 9: Cruising

Enjoy onboard entertainment at sea. World-class performers from across the globe come together on our ships to WOW you from morning to night. Catch Broadway musicals, the DreamWorks Experience, ice-skating spectaculars — plus thrilling casino action, live comedy and music, bars, clubs and much more.

 Day 10: Melbourne, Australia

Multicultural Melbourne retains its Victorian-era elegance even as new districts spring up around historic harbor. It has a dynamic, eclectic urban scene that includes the arts and sports as well as exciting dining and great shopping.

 Day 11: Cruising

Enjoy onboard entertainment at sea. Kids will never be bored onboard. Our complimentary Adventure Ocean® Youth Program is packed with totally awesome stuff for babies, teens and kids in between — like pajama nights, science experiments, scavenger hunts and theme parties.

 Day 12: Adelaide, Australia

Ringed by lush parkland, South Australia’s compact capital offers easy access to the outdoors, from rolling hills and vineyards to beaches. Or enjoy its vibrant city culture of the arts, festivals, gourmet food and great wines.

 Day 13: Cruising

Enjoy onboard entertainment at sea. Whether you’re celebrating a life milestone, a special day or a special someone, you’ll enjoy extras that make for a truly unforgettable voyage.

 Day 14: Cruising

Enjoy onboard entertainment at sea. From Internet service to dry cleaning to accessibility features, our ships are equipped with helpful amenities to enhance your vacation. And it’s all delivered with friendly, engaging Gold Anchor Service®.

 Day 15: Esperance, Australia

Pristine nature is the top attraction in the remote town of Esperance . The spectacular scenery includes the bushland and beaches of Cape Le Grand National Park, uninhabited islets, granite headlands, and the bubblegum-hued Pink Lake.

 Day 16: Cruising

Whether you seek an adrenaline rush or total tranquility, our ships have it all. Try rock climbing, ice skating and surfing 200 feet above the waves. Melt away land-based stress with a spa massage, build a scrapbook of memories or simply relax poolside.

 Day 17: Perth (Fremantle), Australia

Historic, atmospheric Fremantle is the ocean gateway for Perth. Known for a laid-back lifestyle, great beaches and fine weather, the fast-growing state capital also delivers culture, restaurants and other big-city attractions.


discover Australia & New Zealand with Royal Caribbean
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Arranging Your Ocean Cruise Vacation

Whether you’re a first-time cruiser, or checking out a cruise itinerary, Oddball Escapes has great relationships with top names in the Ocean Cruising industry: Royal Caribbean, Carnival Cruises, Norwegian Cruise Line, Princess Cruises, and Holland America. With such a network, Oddball makes it easy to find a Cruise that fits your tastes. Contact us to plan your Cruise vacation.

Ultimate Australia, Tour 4D – with Princess Cruises

Please Note: This itinerary is an example only. Like the idea? Contact us and discuss current vacation options and promotions.

 Example Itinerary Map

23 days from Sydney to Auckland

8 day land segment roundtrip from Sydney

15 night cruise segment to Auckland

 Day 1: Sydney, Australia

Arrive in spectacular Sydney, Australia, and enjoy a seamless transfer by motorcoach to your comfortable hotel accommodations where you’ll spend the night gearing up for an exciting tour ahead. Meet your traveling companions this evening at a welcome reception hosted by your tour director. Overnight Four Seasons Sydney.

 Day 2: Sydney

Wake up and satisfy your appetite with breakfast on us, then embark on a guided morning tour of Sydney. You’ll take in the renowned architecture of the iconic Sydney Opera House and have a chance to photograph the impressive Sydney Harbour Bridge, known locally as ‘The Coat Hanger’ for its arched hanger-like shape. Dig your toes into the soft sands at the most popular beach in New South Wales, Bondi Beach, and even tour The Rocks, a historic district with well-preserved colonial architecture, trendy restaurants, museums, shops and an abundance of Old World charm. The remainder of your afternoon and evening are yours to do as you please, whether you’d like to explore more of Sydney or simply rest your feet for another memorable day ahead. Overnight Four Seasons Sydney. (B)

 Day 3: Ayers Rock

After breakfast, board a plane and take in the views as you soar through the skies on your flight to iconic Ayers Rock in the Outback. This afternoon you’ll be introduced to the culture and 40,000-year history of Australia’s Aboriginal people on an enlightening campfire tour. Walk along the base of Ayers Rock and watch the colors on the rock shift at sunset. Overnight Sails in the Desert Hotel. (B)

 Day 4: Ayers Rock / Darwin

Rise early and travel to the Uluru sunrise viewing area to watch the first rays of the sun rise over the desert landscape. Be mesmerized by the changing colors of Uluru at first light and experience the wonder of the Australian Outback as the dawn emerges. Travel to the airport for a flight to Darwin. Enjoy the rest of the day at your leisure. Overnight Hilton Darwin. (B

 Day 5: Darwin

After breakfast, start the day with a stop at Crocodylus Park for an opportunity to witness the largest reptiles on the planet. Follow your crocodile experience with a scenic drive to the beautiful Litchfield National Park featuring numerous waterfalls, rainforests, magnetic termite mountes and historical sites. You’ll have an opportunity to swim under the majestic waterfalls, weather permitting. Before leaving the National Park, savor a delicious Aussie style buffet lunch. Overnight Hilton Darwin. (B,L)

 Day 6: Cairns / Port Douglas

Enjoy seamless travel as you board a plane to Cairns. Tour the rainforest village of Kuranda before a one-way Skyrail journey for aerial views of Baron Falls. Revel in ocean views on your motorcoach trip to Port Douglas. Considered one of the top eco resorts in the world, the Thala Beach Nature Reserve has been awarded Advanced Ecotourism certification and sits on 145 acres of beachfront property. End the day with dinner featuring a local Aboriginal Didgeridoo performance. Overnight Thala Beach Nature Reserve. (B,D)

 Day 7: Port Douglas

Today’s activities are among the most exciting. Unwind aboard a reef cruise to the Great Barrier Reef, one of the world’s most phenomenal UNESCO World Heritage Sites! Dive or snorkel among the colorful corals and unusual fish beneath the water’s surface, and don’t worry about breakfast or lunch, we’ll make sure you get fed! Overnight Thala Beach Nature Reserve. (B,L)

 Day 8: Sydney / Embark for Cruise Segment

Wave goodbye to Port Douglas as you soar into the clouds from Cairns and fly back to Sydney, where you’re relaxed, rejuvenating retreat at sea awaits. Embark Diamond Princess and sail away for more incredible sights in Australia and New Zealand! (B)

 Day 9: at sea

Enjoy onboard entertainment at sea.

 Day 10: Melbourne

Victoria may be Australia’s smallest continental state, but Melbourne, its capital, is big on everything. With a population of 4.25 million people living in 59 separately named communities within 715 square miles, Melbourne is a sprawling city offering culture, art, fashion and friendly, sports-minded Australians. It is also an easy city to explore. At the heart of the city is the Golden Mile, the city’s governmental and commercial center, home to hotels, shops, restaurants and theaters. Originally part of New South Wales, Victoria became a colony in its own right in 1851. The discovery of gold propelled Melbourne’s growth to prominence and prosperity. Travel Tip: Melbourne is pronounced “mell-burn.”

 Day 11: at sea

Enjoy onboard entertainment at sea.

 Day 12: Hobart (Tasmania), Australia

Tasmania’s capital has much in common with Sydney. Founded but a few years later, Hobart also owes its origins to the establishment of a penal colony – and its natural setting is just as impressive. Seen from its fine deep-water harbor, Hobart spills over the lower reaches of the Derwent Valley as Mt. Wellington towers in the background. Much of the city’s heritage is centered on the historic waterfront. North of the city stretches the vast parkland of the Queen’s Domain. Many of Tasmania’s other attractions are within easy reach of Hobart. With more than 90 National Trust buildings, Hobart, founded in 1804, combines colonial character with a sophisticated metropolitan lifestyle.

 Day 13: at sea

Enjoy onboard entertainment at sea.

 Day 14: at sea

Enjoy onboard entertainment at sea.

 Day 15: Fiordland National Park, New Zealand

New Zealand’s largest national park was formed millennia ago by massive glacial flows that carved deep fiords into the coast of New Zealand’s South Island. At the heart of Fiordland National Park lies Milford Sound. Lined by cliffs that soar nearly a mile above its surface, Milford Sound cuts into the heart of the Southern Alps. Rainforest clings to the cliffs and graceful waterfalls plummet into the void. Mile-high Mitre Peak dominates the upper reaches of the sound. The town of Te Anau in Fiordland National Park is also your gateway to the South Island’s other natural wonders including Lake Wakatipu, the resort of Queenstown and Mt. Cook National Park.

 Day 16: Dunedin, New Zealand

Perched on the hills above one of New Zealand’s loveliest harbors, Dunedin is a Kiwi city with a Scottish heart. Hailed as the “Edinburgh of New Zealand,” Dunedin is proud of its heritage. A statue of famed Scottish poet Robert Burns graces downtown, and the presence of New Zealand’s only kilt maker and whisky distillery – as well as many bagpipe bands – keep Dunedin’s ties to Scotland alive. The city also boasts a distinguished architectural and cultural history, a legacy of New Zealand’s 1860s gold rush. Port Chalmers, gateway to Dunedin, is located eight miles from the city center. Dunedin is a planned city: its streets and suburbs fan out from the city’s octagon. Travel tip: Dunedin is pronounced “Dunn-knee-din”

 Day 17: Akaroa, New Zealand

On the eastern shores of New Zealand’s South Island, Akaroa is a popular tourist destination with a distinctly French flair, its history steeped in legend. It lies on the volcanic Banks Peninsula, which the Maori believe was formed when a hero named Maui piled mountains upon a giant who threatened to eat his children. The same peninsula was purchased from the local Maori by a French whaler around 1838, and was later settled by both the French and the British, who had just signed the Treaty of Waitangi ensuring New Zealand’s existence as a British colony. With French-named streets leading to restaurants serving French cuisine and colonial architecture all around, Akaroa’s heritage as the only French-founded community in New Zealand is unmistakable. Akaroa harbour is home to a diverse array of marine life, including rare Hector’s dolphins, and visitors are lured by the area’s secluded beaches and quaint boutiques.

 Day 18: Picton, New Zealand

Located at the head of Queen Charlotte Sound, Picton is your gateway to the South Island’s famed Marlborough District. Once known primarily for its lush farm lands and many sheep stations, Marlborough came to international attention thanks to a new agricultural product – wine. The release of the 1985 Cloudy Bay Sauvignon Blanc put New Zealand on the map and changed the world’s focus on winemaking in the Southern Hemisphere. Today, the Marlborough region boasts dramatic sea and landscapes, fascinating wine country, excellent restaurants and a number of the nation’s finest gardens. Military names abound in this corner of New Zealand – the region is named for the first Duke of Marlborough, while the largest town, Blenheim, is named after his most famous battle. Picton is named for Sir Thomas Picton, a favorite of another general, the first duke of Wellington.

 Day 19: Wellington, New Zealand

New Zealand’s capital offers stunning views of forested peninsulas, dramatic cliff-side homes and fine Victorian buildings. Settled in 1840 by the London-based New Zealand Company, “wonderful, windy Wellington” is frequently buffeted by bracing winds funnelling through Cook Strait. The sophisticated metropolis boasts museums, winding streets and even a cable car. No wonder many travelers compare it to San Francisco. Despite its steep hills, the city can be easily explored on foot. Kelburn Cable Car, stairways and footpaths climb the slopes from the city center.

 Day 20: at sea

Enjoy onboard entertainment at sea.

 Day 21: Tauranga, New Zealand

New Zealand’s natural bounty is always on display at the Bay of Plenty. It was Captain James Cook who in 1769 aptly named this bay, thanks to the prosperous Maori villages of the region. Tauranga, the chief city, is a bustling port, an agricultural and timber center and a popular seaside resort. Tauranga is also the gateway to Rotorua – a geothermal wonderland that is the heart of Maori culture. A 90-minute drive from Tauranga, Rotorua is New Zealand’s primary tourist attraction. Your ship docks near the foot of Mt. Maunganui, which rises 761 feet above the bay. Across the harbor, Tauranga offers scenic tidal beaches at Omokoroa and Pahoia. The region boasts fine beaches, big-game fishing, thermal springs and seaside resorts.

 Day 22: Auckland, New Zealand

Straddling a narrow isthmus created by 60 different volcanoes, New Zealand’s former capital boasts scenic beauty, historical interest and a cosmopolitan collection of shops, restaurants, museums, galleries and gardens. Rangitoto, Auckland’s largest and youngest volcano, sits in majestic splendor just offshore. Mt. Eden and One Tree Hill, once home to Maori earthworks, overlook the city. One of New Zealand’s fine wine districts lies to the north of Auckland. Auckland served as New Zealand’s capital from 1841 until 1865, when the seat of government moved to Wellington.

 Day 23: Auckland

Trip concludes today in Auckland.


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Arranging Your Land & Sea Vacation

Whether you’re a first-time cruiser, or looking for a new cruise itinerary, Oddball Escapes has great relationships with top names in the Ocean Cruising industry that offer Land & Sea CruiseTours: Royal Caribbean, Carnival Cruises, Norwegian Cruise Line, Princess Cruises, and Holland America. With such a network, Oddball makes it easy to find a CruiseTour that fits your tastes. Contact us to plan your Land & Sea vacation.

Aussie Adventure – with Monograms

Please Note: This itinerary is an example only. Like the idea? Contact us and discuss current vacation options and promotions.

 Example Itinerary Map

16 days from Cairns to Sydney

 Summary

This Australia vacation includes visits to some of the most exciting cities: Cairns, Adelaide, Melbourne, & Sydney. In Melbourne & Sydney, we’ve arranged for you to enjoy guided sightseeing with a local expert, someone who will share insider stories and tell you what it’s like to live in these cities. In Melbourne, we’ll take you to the Italian Quarter, the Royal Botanic Gardens, Queen Victoria Market, and more. In Sydney, your guided sightseeing tour includes the Opera House and Manly Beach, considered the most beautiful beach in Sydney. In each city, we’ve also arranged for you to have a free day to explore on your own (with the support of your Local Host, of course). With the sightseeing and hotels we’ve arranged, you save time and stress of trying to plan this trip of a lifetime for yourself! Let Monograms handle the details so all you have to do is pack your bags and enjoy!

 Day 1: Cairns, Australia

Welcome to Cairns, “Gateway to the Great Barrier Reef,” one of the Seven Natural Wonders of the World. The balance of the day is at your leisure.

 Day 2: Cairns & Great Barrier Reef

Today, board a fast catamaran and CRUISE to Green Island, one of the many tropical islands on Australia’s famous Great Barrier Reef. Here you can choose to SNORKEL, take a GLASS-BOTTOM BOAT tour, or walk through the island’s cool rainforest. You may choose to upgrade to a full-day excursion to the Outer Barrier Reef or return to Cairns and enjoy the afternoon at your leisure. (Breakfast)

 Day 3: Cairns

A full day at leisure to explore tropical Cairns. Perhaps select an optional excursion to visit a zoo to see crocodiles, kangaroos, and koalas, or to the quiet mountain village of Kuranda via the Kuranda Scenic Railway. (Breakfast)

 Day 4: Uluru (Ayers Rock)

Today, fly to Uluru. The rest of the day is at leisure. (Breakfast)

 Day 5: Uluru (Ayers Rock)

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This morning, rise early for an inspiring sunrise at Uluru, followed by breakfast at the Uluru-Kata Tjuta Cultural Centre. Afterward, join your Anangu Local Guide for an INTERPRETIVE WALK around the base of the rock. Along the way, learn about Anangu culture and the bush skills that have helped them survive in this harsh climate. This afternoon, guided sightseeing takes you to Kata Tjuta (the Olgas), where you will enjoy a GUIDED WALK, followed by a visit to “Sunset Strip” for a drink & canapés, and to witness the changing colors of the rock. (Breakfast)

 Day 6: Alice Springs

Today, fly to Alice Springs. Then, enjoy guided sightseeing with visits to the OLD TELEGRAPH STATION, ANZAC HILL, SCHOOL OF THE AIR, and the ROYAL FLYING DOCTOR SERVICE. (Breakfast)

 Day 7: Adelaide

Today, fly to Adelaide. The remainder of the day is at your leisure for independent activities. (Breakfast)

 Day 8: Adelaide

Early this morning, depart Adelaide and travel by motorcoach and ferry to KANGAROO ISLAND, one of the world’s last unspoiled habitats. Visit SEAL BAY with a national park ranger to see a colony of rare Australian sea lions. Explore FLINDERS CHASE NATIONAL PARK, a sanctuary for native Australian animals, including kangaroos, wallabies, and koalas. Stop here for a walk on REMARKABLE ROCKS, with stunning views of the sea. You will also take a boardwalk down a rugged cliff face to ADMIRALS ARCH, a unique rock formation and home to a colony of New Zealand fur seals, which can be seen resting on the rocks and playing in the waves. Return to Adelaide late this evening. (Breakfast, Lunch)

 Day 9: Adelaide

A full day at leisure to explore Adelaide. You may choose to join an optional excursion to Barossa Valley for wine tasting and lunch at a winery. (Breakfast)

 Day 10: Melbourne

Today, fly to Melbourne, the cosmopolitan heart of Australia. The remainder of the day is at your leisure. (Breakfast)

 Day 11: Melbourne

Your morning guided sightseeing tour gives you a glimpse into Melbourne’s wonderful history. Explore Fitzroy Gardens and visit the Conservatory; you will also have the chance to see Captain Cook’s Cottage. Drive by famous sporting complexes including the Rod Laver Arena (home to the Australian Open Tennis Tournament), reflect at the Shrine of Remembrance, and discover the beauty of the ROYAL BOTANIC GARDENS. The remainder of the day is at your leisure. (Breakfast)

 Day 12: Melbourne

Enjoy a full day at leisure for independent activities. You may want to join an excursion to Phillip Island to watch the world-famous Penguin Parade, or to dine aboard a tramcar restaurant as it winds its way through the streets of Melbourne. (Breakfast)

 Day 13: Sydney

Today, fly to beautiful Sydney. The rest of the day is at your leisure for independent activities. (Breakfast)

 Day 14: Sydney

Enjoy a morning guided sightseeing TOUR – travel over the Harbour Bridge and stop at Milsons Point for stunning views of the Opera House, Sydney Harbour and the Sydney Harbour Bridge. Take off your shoes and feel the sand between your toes at striking Manly Beach, considered by many to be the most beautiful beach in Sydney. The afternoon is at your leisure. (Breakfast)

 Day 15: Sydney

Enjoy a full day at leisure in this beautiful city. Choose from our selection of optional excursions, including a cruise on Sydney Harbour and a climb to the top of Sydney Harbour Bridge. (Breakfast)

 Day 16: Sydney

Your vacation ends with breakfast this morning. (Breakfast)


let Monograms plan the details of your independent travel
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Arranging Your Land Tour Vacation

Whether it’s your first time on an escorted tour, or prefer to venture out independently, Oddball Escapes has great relationships with top names in the Land Tour industry: Globus, Cosmos, Trafalgar, Brendan Tours, G Adventures, Avanti Destinations, and Monograms. With such a network, Oddball makes it easy to find a Land Tour that fits your tastes. Contact us to plan your Land Vacation.

Naturally New Zealand – with Monograms

Please Note: This itinerary is an example only. Like the idea? Contact us and discuss current vacation options and promotions.

 Example Itinerary Map

13 days from Auckland to Queenstown

 Summary

God’s Own Country…it might sound conceited, but this is how New Zealanders—or “kiwis”—refer to their country. Why? Maybe because it offers stunning beauty. Maybe because it’s one of the first countries in the world to see the sunrise. Maybe because bungee jumping first began there. Don’t worry; we won’t make you go bungee jumping though—unless you choose to do that on your own! Instead, we’ll show you the amazing beauty and fun cities. On this 13-day vacation, we’ve arranged your hotel accommodations, daily breakfast (plus four lunches and one dinner), sightseeing, land transportation, and transfers from/to your hotels to/from the airports for all intra-vacation flights. A one-of-a-kind special feature is the Monograms Local Host®, someone who is there for you to ensure your vacation runs smoothly and you get the most out of your trip. We’ve arranged for you to have a Local Host in Auckland, Christchurch, and Queenstown.

 Day 1: Auckland, New Zealand

Welcome to New Zealand! The rest of the day is at your leisure.

 Day 2: Auckland

Enjoy a morning guided sightseeing tour of the city, followed by a CRUISE on Waitemata Harbour for spectacular views of Auckland and its surrounds. The remainder of the day is at your leisure. (Breakfast)

 Day 3: Waitomo / Matamata / Rotorua

Today, travel via motorcoach south to Waitomo, where you will take a boat trip through the WAITOMO GLOWWORM CAVES. Afterward, visit the HOBBITON MOVIE SET from The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit films. Continue on to Rotorua. (Breakfast, Lunch)

 Day 4: Rotorua

This morning, enjoy guided sightseeing with visits to TE PUIA, RAINBOW SPRINGS, and the AGRODOME. This afternoon, explore this geothermal wonderland on your own. This evening, you may choose to join our optional Maori cultural performance and Hangi dinner. (Breakfast)

 Day 5: Wellington

Today, fly to Wellington, the capital of New Zealand. (Breakfast)

 Day 6: Wellington

Your guided morning sightseeing tour takes you to see the famous Beehive and Parliament buildings as well as scenic views from the top of Mount Victoria. Take in the beauty of the Wellington Botanical Gardens, then drive around the rugged Wellington coastline, discovering hidden bays and some of Wellington’s most popular beaches. During your free time today you may want to visit Te Papa, the national museum of New Zealand, where interactive displays tell the story of the country’s great heritage and natural wonders. (Breakfast)

 Day 7: Christchurch

Today, fly to Christchurch on New Zealand’s South Island. (Breakfast)

 Day 8: Christchurch & Akaroa

Today, travel to Akaroa, a former French and British settlement where you will have some time to explore the charming village with its colonial architecture, galleries, and cafés. Afterward, take a NATURE CRUISE on Akaroa Harbour for a chance to see some of the native wildlife, including New Zealand fur seals, the White-Flippered Blue Penguin, and the Hector’s dolphin, one of the smallest and rarest in the world. Return to Christchurch in the late afternoon. (Breakfast)

 Day 9: Mount Cook

Travel south by motorcoach via the Canterbury Plains to the shores of turquoise-blue Lake Tekapo, where the Southern Alps provide the backdrop for a stunning photo. Continue on to Mount Cook National Park. After lunch at your hotel, you will have time to explore this alpine wonderland. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

 Day 10: Mount Cook / Queenstown

Enjoy the morning at leisure to further explore the area. In the afternoon, travel via motorcoach past Lake Pukaki and the rugged Mackenzie Basin to Omarama, where you will make a comfort stop. Continue on to Queenstown, the “Adventure Capital of the World.” (Breakfast, Lunch)

 Day 11: Queenstown & Doubtful Sound

Today, travel into FIORDLAND NATIONAL PARK, a UNESCO World Heritage Site that boasts some of the most breathtaking scenery in the world. Doubtful Sound is 10 times larger and three times longer than Milford Sound, its more well-known cousin to the north. It is also far less visited due to its remote location, so during your fjord CRUISE you experience this pristine natural setting just as early Maori and European explorers did. (Breakfast, Lunch)

 Day 12: Queenstown

Enjoy a full day at leisure in the “Adventure Capital of the World.” Perhaps choose an optional jetboat ride, visit a local winery, or tour some of the sights used to film The Lord of the Rings trilogy. (Breakfast)

 Day 13: Queenstown

Your vacation ends with breakfast this morning. (Breakfast)


discover the Australia & New Zealand independently with Monograms
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Arranging Your Land Tour Vacation

Whether it’s your first time on an escorted tour, or prefer to venture out independently, Oddball Escapes has great relationships with top names in the Land Tour industry: Globus, Cosmos, Trafalgar, Brendan Tours, G Adventures, Avanti Destinations, and Monograms. With such a network, Oddball makes it easy to find a Land Tour that fits your tastes. Contact us to plan your Land Vacation.