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Grand Escorted


Tour Code: E22F
Tour Duration: 25 Days

Grand Escorted is a 25 Day tour from North America that is Fully Escorted in Australia and New Zealand. Your APT Tour Director will meet you on arrival "Downunder", introduce you to your fellow travelers, and escort you from beginning to end on your unforgettable South Pacific adventure.

Cities you will visit while on tour include Auckland, Rotorua, Christchurch, Mt Cook, Queenstown, Milford Sound, Franz Josef Glacier, Sydney, Melbourne, Alice Springs, Ayers Rock, Cairns, Dunk Island, Fiji and more.

 
Tour Highlights
 
Sightseeing Highlights
Cruise to the Great Barrier Reef and swim and snorkel amongst the colorful marine life
Tour Uluru (Ayers Rock), learning of the ancient legends surrounding this landmark
Relax in tropical surrounds on Dunk Island
Cross the Southern Alps by rail aboard the TranzAlpine Train
Cruise the full length of spectacular Milford Sound admiring Mitre Peak
View Australian and New Zealand wildlife
Sydney Harbour Luncheon Cruise
View spectacular Franz Josef Glacier
Visit Mt Cook National Park
Cuddle a koala
Visit the giant domes of Kata Tjuta (Olgas)
Tour Rotorua, famous geo-thermal region
Sydney sights and southern surf beaches
Enjoy a guided tour of Sydney Opera House
City sights tour of Melbourne
Enjoy the year-round resort of Queenstown
Ride the Scenic Kuranda Railway through the rain forest, enjoying Royale Service
Enjoy the Auckland city sights tour
Join a boat cruise through the glow-worm grotto at Waitomo Caves
See the Pamagirri Aboriginal Dancers
Explore tropical Fiji

Superior Accommodation
Two nights in Rotorua at the Royal Lakeside Novotel, on the shores of Lake Rotorua
Three nights at the Shangri-La Hotel Sydney, with Opera House views from your room
Stay two nights on tropical Dunk Island
Stay at Sails in the Desert, Uluru (Ayers Rock)
Two nights at Sheraton Towers, Melbourne
Three nights in the tropical paradise of Fiji
Centrally located hotels in key locations
All hotel porterage and tipping included

Finest Dining - 44 Meals Included
Dine Around Dinner, Queenstown
Colonial Tramcar Restaurant, Melbourne
'Sounds of Silence' dinner, Uluru (Ayers Rock)
Hangi (feast) and cultural performance
24 hot breakfasts (B); 5 lunches (L)
15 dinners, Freedom of Choice Dining - multi-choice menus or buffets (D)
Restaurant tipping included

Feature Benefits
Tour prices include all touring as listed plus all air from North America and within Australia, New Zealand and Fiji
Friendly and professional Tour Director and Driver/Guide at your service
Luxury motorcoaches featuring large panoramic windows, reclining seats with foot rests and rest room
Cultural Touring Experiences
Free travel kit including stylish travel bag

Click map to view full size

Legend:
   B = Breakfast    L = Lunch    D = Dinner 

Itinerary
(Departure dates and pricing below itinerary)
 
Day 1 Sat. Los Angeles
This evening board your flight bound for Auckland, New Zealand.

Day 2 Sun. In Flight
Cross the international dateline and 'lose' a day.

Day 3 Mon. Auckland
Meet your Tour Director on arrival in the North Island city of Auckland. Make an early morning check-in at your hotel before an afternoon of sightseeing. Gather with fellow travelers this evening for a special Welcome Dinner hosted by your Tour Director.
Accommodation: Auckland, Crowne Plaza. (BD)

Day 4 Tue. Rotorua, Traditional Feast
We travel south to Waitomo Caves for a guided boat tour of the fascinating glow-worm grotto, then continue to the Rotorua thermal region where we are special guests at a traditional Maori Hangi (feast) and cultural performance.
Two Night Stay: Rotorua, Royal Lakeside Novotel.

Day 5 Wed. Country Homestay
We tour Whakarewarewa Thermal Reserve, viewing its boiling mudpools and steaming geysers. See an agricultural show, then travel to Rainbow Springs to view the flightless Kiwi bird. Later, choose to experience rural living with a country family, enjoying a home-cooked dinner and their hospitality for the night. Or, dine and stay at the hotel.

Day 6 Thur. Rotorua, Christchurch
There's time to relax before flying to the charming city of Christchurch on New Zealand's South Island.
Accommodation: Christchurch, Crowne Plaza. (BD)

Day 7 Fri. Southern Alps, Franz Josef
Step aboard the TranzAlpine Train for a memorable journey through the spectacular alpine scenery of the mighty Southern Alps. We continue down the rugged west coast to the remarkable sight of the Franz Josef Glacier.
Accommodation: Franz Josef Glacier Hotel. (BD)

Day 8 Sat. Queenstown, DINE AROUND
Magical scenery presents itself to us today as we drive over Haast Pass, then along the shores of lakes Wanaka and Hawea. Tonight, experience APT's unique Dine Around Dinner, as you dine in your choice of Queenstown's superb restaurants.
Two Night Stay: Queenstown, Queenstown Gardens Hotel, right on the lakefront. (BD)

Day 9 Sun. Milford Sound Cruise
Enjoy the beauty of Fiordland National Park today as we cruise Milford Sound beneath tumbling waterfalls and famous Mitre Peak. The optional return flight to Queenstown provides a memorable aerial perspective of this untamed region (own expense). (BL)

Day 10 Mon. Queenstown, Mt Cook
The morning is free before traveling to New Zealand's highest peak, Mt Cook, where the Tasman Glacier flows down its eastern slopes. Weather permitting, take a ski-plane flight over this spectacular region, including landing on the glacier (own expense).
Accommodation: Mt Cook National Park, The Hermitage. (BD)

Day 11 Tue. Fly to Sydney, Australia
Travel via Lake Pukaki, Lake Tekapo and Burkes Pass, through the plains of Canterbury to Christchurch, where we board our flight to Sydney, Australia.
Three Night Stay: Shangri-La Hotel, Sydney, enjoying sweeping views over the harbor and Opera House. (BL)

Day 12 Wed. Sydney Sights, Harbor Cruise, Sydney Opera House Tour and Dinner
See Sydney's famous sights as we tour the city, including Hyde Park, Kings Cross and Bondi Beach. Experience a luncheon cruise on Sydney's beautiful harbor. The rest of the day is free before a special treat this evening, a guided tour of the Sydney Opera House followed by dinner in a fine restaurant. (BLD)

Day 13 Thur. At Leisure in Sydney
Relax and enjoy cosmopolitan Sydney at your own pace today. Perhaps take an optional sightseeing tour to Canberra or the Blue Mountains (own expense), stroll the famous Rocks area or visit the exclusive Queen Victoria Shopping Complex. Dinner tonight has been left free for you to further explore the many delights of Sydney. (B)

Day 14 Fri. Melbourne City Sights, Colonial Tramcar Dinner
A short flight takes us to the 'Garden City' of Melbourne. On arrival, we take an in-depth tour of the city, including Victoria Market, Parliament House and beautiful Fitzroy Gardens. Early this evening, step aboard the Colonial Tramcar for dinner while traveling the stunning streets of Melbourne and the exclusive suburbs of Toorak and South Yarra.

Two Night Stay: Melbourne, Sheraton Towers Southgate, luxury on the vibrant riverfront. (BD)

Day 15 Sat. At Leisure in Melbourne
A free day to enjoy the many delights of Melbourne. You may choose to enjoy a leisurely breakfast before stepping out to explore this beautiful city. Stroll down to Southgate on the Yarra River, visit the city's many shopping arcades or, catch a tram to St Kilda. Perhaps take an optional tour to see the world-famous Penguin Parade on Phillip Island (own expense). (B)

Day 16 Sun. Alice Springs, Royal Flying Doctor Service, Telegraph Station
Join your morning flight to Alice Springs. On arrival, take a tour of this famous Outback town, located close to the very center of the vast Australian continent. Visit the base of the Royal Flying Doctor Service, see the old Telegraph Station and enjoy views of the town from Anzac Hill. Dine as you please this evening in one of the many restaurants close to the hotel.
Accommodation: Alice Springs Resort. (B)

Day 17 Mon. Camel Farm, Kata Tjuta (Olgas), 'Sounds of Silence' Desert Dinner
Try riding a camel this morning when we make a stop at a camel farm (own expense). Continue southwest to Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park, home of Uluru (Ayers Rock) and Kata Tjuta (Olgas). Practice your photography skills at beautiful Kata Tjuta, a cluster
of 36 rocky domes dominating the western skyline. As the evening sun sets on Uluru, enjoy pre-dinner drinks and listen to tunes of the didgeridoo at the famous 'Sounds of Silence' dinner, an unforgettable experience of dining in the Australian desert.
Accommodation: Ayers Rock Resort in the premier hotel, Sails in the Desert, offering absolute luxury in the arid heart of Australia. (BD)

Day 18 Tue. Uluru (Ayers Rock), Cairns
Tour the base of Uluru (Ayers Rock) this morning, viewing rock art, caves and sacred sites, and hearing of the ancient Aboriginal legends of the region. Visit Maruku Arts and Crafts Gallery, where there's the opportunity to purchase original artifacts from local Aborigines. Later in the day, we board a flight bound for the tropical city of Cairns in Far North Queensland, taking in the local sights on arrival.
Accommodation: Cairns, the superb Radisson Plaza Hotel at the Pier, situated right on the beautiful waterfront at Trinity Bay. (B)

Day 19 Wed. Dunk Island
This morning we travel to tropical Dunk Island, our home for the next two nights. The afternoon is free to relax and enjoy the palm-fringed beaches and lush rain forests, filled with exotic flowers and birdlife.
Two Night Stay: Dunk Island, Garden Cabanas, your luxury island home. (BD)

Day 20 Thur. Great Barrier Reef Cruise
Witness the beauty of the Great Barrier Reef as we spend the day at lovely Beaver Cay. Swim, snorkel and join the semi-submersible vessel to view brilliantly colored coral, giant clams and tropical fish. (BLD)

Day 21 Fri. Kuranda Train, Cairns
We depart Dunk Island and follow the coastline north to Cairns. Join the Skyrail Cableway
for a ride over World Heritage rain forest to Kuranda. See a performance by the renowned Pamagirri Aboriginal Dancers and cuddle a koala at the wildlife enclosure. This afternoon, return to Cairns aboard the Scenic Kuranda Railway, enjoying Royale Service as the train winds past waterfalls and through rain forest.
Accommodation: Cairns, Radisson Plaza Hotel at the Pier, right on the waterfront. (BD)

Day 22 Sat. Cairns to Fiji
Today fly to the beautiful Fiji islands. On arrival in Nadi, transfer to your hotel.

Three Night Stay: Nadi, the luxurious Sheraton Royal Denarau Resort. Enjoy your time discovering this tropical island paradise. (B)

Day 23 Sun. At Leisure in Fiji
The day is totally at your leisure to enjoy this beautiful island. Swim in the crystal ocean waters, take a dip in the pool, join an optional cruise to an outer island (own expense) or simply relax in the stunning surrounds of this tropical hideaway. (B)

Day 24 Mon. Fiji Island Tour
Soak up the warmth of Fiji this morning on an island tour. Stroll amid the exotic orchids of The Garden of the Sleeping Giant. Visit Viseisei village to discover the rich history of Fiji on a memorable guided tour. Stop at Vuda lookout for breathtaking views and great photo opportunities. Explore the sites of Nadi town at leisure before returning to your hotel. (BD)

Day 25 Tue. Return Flight to the USA
Enjoy a late checkout before an evening flight home. Arrive in Los Angeles Tuesday afternoon. (B and BL)

 

Departure Dates and Price (Back to beginning of itinerary)
 
Grand Escorted
Tour Code: E22F

Fully inclusive air/land tour prices include all international and domestic airfares in Australia and are based on flights starting and  finishing in Los Angeles (US$) and Vancouver (Cdn$).
 

 Departure Dates US$ Cdn$
2004
Feb 7;

Please call or email for current prices.

Feb 28;
Mar 13, 27;
   
Jul 10;
Sept 18;
Oct 9, 23;
Nov 6, 13 20;
   
Dec 18.    
2005
Jan 8;
Feb 5, 12;
   
Feb 26;
Mar 5, 12, 26.
   

-Many dates are guaranteed - ask when booking.

-For departures after March 2005 please inquire.
-Single Supplement may apply.
-Land Only tour prices available upon request.
-Special add-on airfares from US and Canadian cities available upon request.
-Air taxes and departure taxes not included.
Additional Information

 

 

 
For reservations call
Australia Escorted Tours
toll free at 1-888-333-6607
or email: res@aetours.com

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