Reefs and Rainforests with Sailing (Start Cairns)

Tour Length
18 days
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US$2510
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TOUR STARTS
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PRICE
  09 Sep 2015 25 Sep 2015 Definite departure   US$2789
  07 Oct 2015 23 Oct 2015 Definite departure Sold out
  14 Oct 2015 30 Oct 2015 Definite departure   US$2510
  04 Nov 2015 20 Nov 2015 Definite departure Sold out
  11 Nov 2015 27 Nov 2015 Definite departure   US$2632
  02 Dec 2015 18 Dec 2015 Definite departure US$2925
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20 Jul 2016 05 Aug 2016 Sold out
10 Aug 2016 26 Aug 2016 US$3025
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07 Sep 2016 23 Sep 2016 US$3025
14 Sep 2016 30 Sep 2016 Sold out

Important Notice:

Please note: Your hotel will be available to check into from 2pm on Day 1. Your trip will start in Cairns at 7.30am on Day 2 of your Itinerary.

Please note: This itinerary is correct up until 4th September 2015. Trips commencing after this date will finish a day earlier.

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Overview Reviews
18 days
Accommodation:
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Tour Map

You will visit: East Coast, including Cairns, Cape Tribulation, The Whitsundays, Langmorn Station, Fraser Island, Noosa, Surfers Paradise, Byron Bay, Coffs Harbour & Sydney

Wild nights & wildlife await you on Australia's East Coast. Take a rooftop ride along the rainforest canopy, go snorkeling on the Great Barrier Reef & relax & work on your tan in the Whitsunday Islands, where you’ll spend 2 nights aboard a boat sailing this incredible area. From there get back on the mainland for guided bushwalks, koalas & kangaroos. Enjoy a 'knees-up' at a farmstay then head back to the beach. But not just any beach, Surfers Paradise, serving up some of the best surf & sand in the world.

Top Offers & Trip Notes

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Itinerary + Inclusions & ME Time Optionals

ME Time Optionals

ME Time optionals will take your trip to a whole new level with unforgettable experiences unique to the places you visit. See more, do more, live more & go home completely regret-free. Costs for these aren’t included in your tour cost & are payable to your Trip Manager in local currency.

Inclusions

On our trips we don't just take you to the destinations, we make sure you get under the skin of every place you visit. From amazing food & accommodation, to exclusive access to incredible experiences, with Contiki you'll get unbeatable value & a completely unique travel experience.

1 Arrive Cairns

Check into the Rydges Esplanade from 2pm and the rest of the afternoon is free for you to explore.

Resort

2 Cairns to Cape Tribulation

Meet up with the other Contiki travellers and your Tour Manager in Cairns. Then we hit the road and travel north.

Sticking to the coast, we follow the Coral Sea past remote beaches and gorgeous scenery to the lush, tropical Daintree Rainforest. Get back to nature as we walk through this UNESCO World Heritage-listed site with a local aboriginal guide who will teach you about the culture traditions of the native people. You will also head to a stunningly clear swimming-hole in Mossman Gorge, where you can cool off in the waters.

This afternoon you can choose to either glide through the canopy of the rainforest on the optional zip lines, go kayaking off cape tribulation and see turtles swimming beneath and eagles soaring overhead.

Tonight, get to know your group and Tour Manager over dinner in Cape Tribulation.

Lodge Breakfast

  • Aboriginal experience at Mossman Gorge
  • Jungle Surfing
    A$85
  • Kayaking Adventure
    A$65.00
3 Cape Tribulation to Cairns

We check out Cape Tribulation beach & go for a guided walk through the mangroves, before we hit the road and travel to Port Douglas. Known for its idyllic white sands and palms trees, this resort town attracts both the rich & famous and travellers. You’ll soon see why.

Later this afternoon we arrive back in Cairns.

Resort Breakfast

  • Mangrove boardwalk with our expert guide
4-5 Cairns

Wake up to the warm waters of Cairns where there’s something for everyone. This is your chance to experience the Great Barrier Reef on an optional day trip.

If you have always wanted to go scuba diving on the Great Barrier Reef then this is your chance! There are scuba diving options for both certified and introductory divers (no experience necessary). Check out the amazing World Heritage listed Great Barrier Reef, you are sure to see one of Nemo's cousins, tiny schooling fish right up to giant Maori wrasse and if you're lucky, even a small reef shark! There are local marine biologists on board to answer 'which fish is that?'

On day 2, for those who are keen for a fun and thrilling ride on the rapids of the Tully River, join our optional whitewater rafting adventure activity with our professional Local Guides. There are loads more activities available in Cairns like sky diving and bungy jumping – just ask your Trip Manager for some more info.

Catch up with your new buddies to swap stories on your day at a local hot spot. The food and entertainment is sure to leave a lasting impression!

Resort Breakfast,Dinner,Breakfast

  • Cairns city orientation
  • Outer Barrier Reef Cruise
    from A$170
  • White Water Rafting
    A$185
  • Skydive Australia
    From A$259
  • AJ Hackett Minjin Swing or Bungee Jump
    A$105 / A$150
6-7 Cairns to Whitsundays Sailing

Relax on the coach as we cruise past thick, tropical rainforests into Tully, home to some of Australia’s best whitewater rafting. Slowly leaving the tropics behind us, we hit Townsville for some free time. Check out the colonial buildings and get a feel for its maritime past as we drive along the esplanade and into town where you can grab some lunch.

See vistas over Magnetic Island, a National Park and bird sanctuary, before we continue our travels south to Airlie Beach, gateway to the Whitsundays Islands and the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park to board our sailing yacht.

Enjoy two days and nights sailing the stunning Whitsunday islands with your friends. Swim, snorkel, or laze your way around the 74 islands of this tropical paradise, where you will pass lush tropical islands, laze on the world's best beaches and personally meet an extravagant array of sea life. You can help the crew & learn how to grind the winches & hoist the sails, or just relax and top up your tan in the sun.

Please note: Accommodation on board the yacht is multishare only.

Yacht Yacht Breakfast,Dinner,Lunch,Breakfast,Dinner

  • Pass through Tully, home to Australia's best whitewater rafting
  • Pass Hinchinbrook Island - Australia's largest island national park
  • See Magnetic Island
  • Townsville city orientation
  • Relax on the famous white sands of Whitehaven Beach
8 The Whitsundays to Farmstay

Today you head back to the mainland, plug in you ipod or chat with friends as we drive through scenic Mackay, with countryside full of vibrant green vegetation and sugar cane plantations. Continue down the Capricorn Coast and head inland to an authentic country homestead, right in the heart of Queensland’s cattle country, for our overnight stay.

During our time at Langmorn, a working cattle station, you’ll experience a taste of real Aussie country life. The owners will show you around the enormous property in a behind-the-scenes look at daily life on the farm.

Taste local hospitality tonight as your welcoming hosts pile your table high with a hearty roast beef and vegetables (like you've never tasted before) followed by an indulgent homemade decadent desert.

Later, have a go at whip cracking an authentic leather stock whip under night lights before heading back inside for traditional Aussie bush dancing. Have some fun and a giggle with some evening karaoke. See if you can spot the 'Southern Cross' amongst a chandelier of stars, a constellation only visible in the southern hemisphere & featured on the Australian flag.

Country Homestead Breakfast,Dinner

  • Visit the main region of Australia's sugar cane industry
  • Visit & cross the Tropic of Capricorn
  • Rockhampton sightseeing tour
  • Meet the cattle station owners
  • Check out the farm & animals on a hay wagon ride, then try whip cracking!
  • Aussie Outback experience: Langmorn Station Special Stopover
9 Farmstay to Fraser Island

After breakfast we drive back out to the coast and jump on board a ferry. Enjoy the cruise out to famous Fraser Island, where we’ll stay at an eco-lodge for our time here. Each cabin has its own kitchenette and living room, as well as a balcony – perfect for hanging out and listening to the sounds of the bush surrounding your lodge.

If you're done with the pool and spa, you could take a stroll along the sand, check out the busy crabs on their evening march up the beach or the fish that dart amongst the jetty pylons. Make yourself comfortable on the beach and take in a unique sunset over the water near the Jetty Hut.

Tonight, grab a bite to eat at one of the resort restaurants, then grab your dancing shoes and use the coloured chalk to write on the walls of the popular Dingo Bar.

Eco Lodge Breakfast

  • Stop in Childers, a small country town, known for its heritage & farming history
  • Stay on the world's largest sand island, a UNESCO World Heritage site
  • Stay in an eco-village & enjoy the resort facilities
10 Fraser Island to Noosa

Experience a slice of paradise on Fraser Island this morning. This UNESCO World Heritage-listed site is the largest sand island in the world and is 800,000 years old. Packed with around 40 fresh-water lakes, lush rainforests and diverse wildlife, Fraser Island lives up to its amazing reputation.

Jump on our included 4WD adventure through the island’s sand dunes, rainforests & freshwater lakes. Our Local Guide will show you some of the island’s best spots and hidden treasures, such as Lake McKenzie – make sure you keep your camera handy – this is one of Australia’s most beautiful regions.

Once we’re back on the mainland, Noosa is up next. It’s a trendy beach resort town. Enjoy a drink or two with the included dinner tonight at the local surf club. Later if you want to take it up a level, head out into the town & explore Noosa by night.

Resort Lunch,Breakfast,Dinner

  • Take a locally guided 4WD trip across Fraser Island & indulge in a gourmet BBQ lunch
  • Drive along Australia's only sand highway
  • Visit the picturesque seaside town & beach of Noosa
  • Dine beachside at Noosa Surf Club & meet a lifesaver
11 Noosa to Surfers Paradise

There’s time to explore Noosa this morning so take a stroll through the shops or sunbathe and swim at the beach before we make our way south. We also stop off in Brisbane today. You’ll get a feel for the capital of Queensland’s laid-back atmosphere when we have a look around town.

Tonight we pull into legendary Surfers Paradise, the Gold Coast’s party hot spot and home to some of the best surfing beaches in the world.

Grab some of your new friends and join the party atmosphere of Surfers tonight with included VIP nightclub entry. With loads of restaurants and buzzing nightlife, there’s something for everybody. Head to the happening Orchid or Cavill Avenues, where clubs and bars line the street or shoot some pool at the pub.

Resort Breakfast

  • See the Brisbane River, South Bank, Royal Botanical Gardens & visit Queen Street Mall on a city tour
  • See the Glass House Mountains
  • Stay at a resort located right by the beach
  • VIP nightclub entry
12 Surfers Paradise

With a free day, hang out among the bronzed bodies, bikini babes and surfer dudes on the golden sands. Check out what Surfers is most famous for, the three kilometers of gorgeous natural beaches. Kick back and spot some locals showing off their talents in the waves.

If you want to get amongst the action there’s so much happening in Surfers Paradise you are spoilt for choice. You could head up into the Hinterland Mountains on a 4WD trip, visit South Stradbroke Island on a kayaking safari or spend all day at Crocodile Hunter Steve Irwin's Zoo, Australia Zoo.

Our hotel is only a short walk from both the beach and downtown Surfers Paradise so you could also hit the shops – Surfers has some great places to shop and a huge outlet mall for bargains, so get some tips from your Trip Manager on where’s best to head.

Resort Breakfast

  • Relax on some of Australia's most famous beaches on the Gold Coast
  • Tandem Skydiving
    from A$345
  • Southern Cross 4WD night tour
    AU$ 105
13 Surfers Paradise to Byron Bay

This morning, we visit the Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary, where you’ll get up close to Australia’s amazing native animals. Cuddle a koala, feed the kangaroos and see wombats, emus, crocodiles, dingoes, Tasmanian devils and colourful birds. You can feel good about doing this too, as our visits to this not-for-profit organisation go towards the sanctuary’s animal hospital and help over 4000 injured animals every year.

Next up: cross the Queensland/New South Wales state boarder to one of Aussies not-to-be-missed spots - gorgeous Byron Bay. With a laid-back lifestyle, cute little shops, organic food, alternative therapies and around 30km of pretty beaches, it’s a must see. Byron Bay is situated on a marine park also known for its incredible marine life.

Head out to Cape Byron, the mainland Australia’s most easterly point and see the local pod of dolphins and if you’re lucky the seasonal humpback whales. Grab some lunch back in town and maybe take a swim at the beach.

There are loads of other things on offer here too, like a sea kayaking adventure where you catch up with a family of dolphins at Wategos beach, their curiosity often brings them right up next your kayak, and snorkeling at Middle reef home to turtles, rays, corals, eels, starfish and sharks.

Hostel Breakfast

  • Visit Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary - cuddle a koala and see native Australian animals including kangaroos, emus, crocodiles, dingoes & Tasmanian devils
  • Visit Australia's most eastern point & Cape Byron lighthouse
  • Get into Byron's organic lifestyle & cool nightlife
  • Byron Bay Kayaking 3hrs
    A$65
14 Byron Bay to Coffs Harbour

This morning you’ll wake up to more good times in Byron Bay. Maybe head to the beach for a swim or a wander round town before it’s time to leave the chilled out atmosphere behind after lunch.

Later, there’s more beach action. Tonight we’ll stay in Coffs Harbour, home to surf beaches, fishing and banana plantations. This is a chance for a unique experience with our overnight Special Stay experience – we’re staying at a Surf Village!

This afternoon it’s time for an awesome Aussie experience - hit the waves & learn to surf with some professional instructors as you have a go at surfing! Join some of the coolest people on the planet as you get involved with Australia's beach culture. Our cabins are right on the beach, so soak up the surf vibes, top up your tan and relax by the open fire under the stars tonight.

Surf Village Breakfast,Dinner

  • Learn to surf the waves or ride a kayak at our beachside surf camp
15 Coffs Harbour to Sydney

This morning, chill out on the coach and chat with your travel buddies as we head south. We pass the iconic 'Big Banana' in Coffs Harbour, before heading to Port Macquarie for lunch. Relax with your travel buddies...it’s a chilled out day before reaching Sydney.

From the high-energy downtown area to its popular beaches, Sydney has something for everyone. You’ll soon understand why this is one the world’s most beautiful harbour cities.

See the sails of the UNESCO World Heritage-listed Sydney Opera House and the famous Harbour Bridge. We will pass the iconic ‘Coca Cola Sign’ and cruise along ‘The Strip’ of Kings Cross, and hear stories of the underbelly of Sydney’s Red Light District.

Tonight, there is a chance for you to scale the heights of the Harbour Bridge on the optional BridgeClimb.

Breakfast

  • See the famous 'Big Banana' & banana plantations
  • Stop in the seaside resort town of Port Macquarie
  • Harbour Bridge climb
    from A$198
16 Sydney

First up today - get in the know on Sydney as your Trip Manager points out all the hottest spots & icons of this harbourside haven. From the babes on the beaches of Manly, the buzzy Kings Cross & its colourful characters to Chinatown & Darling Harbour, the sights & sounds are as varied as its residents & we’re here to uncover it all. We’ll also take you to Mrs Macquarie’s Chair Lookout Street and the Rocks, for undoubtedly the city’s best views of the Opera House & Harbour Bridge in one go (so it’s perfect for some of those legendary Sydney snaps).

Later, it’s a totally Sydney experience with an included ride to the famous Manly Beach. We’ll drop you right at the beach. Bliss! On arrival, grab some lunch then throw down your towel, pop in your iPod & take time to paddle in the cool water, work on your tan if the weather is right, or just people watch as you soak up the vibes & atmosphere. There are loads of shops & restaurants here too, for those that are keen to check out the local buzz. Later, take the Sydney scenic route back - you’ll get a panoramic view of the city as your backdrop whilst you cruise on the famous & iconic ferry

On arrival back in the city tonight, dinner is guaranteed to impress. We’ll head to one of Darling Harbour’s locals restaurants for a delicious included meal right by the water. Watching the sunset with a drink in hand & a great meal as you people watch the cool Sydney siders is the perfect way to end the day.

Celebrate your last night on tour together by heading out for dinner at Darling Harbour & soaking up the buzzing nightlife of Sydney with your friends one last time!

Hotel Breakfast,Dinner

  • Take a tour of Kings Cross, Chinatown, Darling Harbour, Mrs Macquarie's Chair Lookout & The Rocks
  • Cruise across Sydney Harbour on a ferry to Manly
  • Cook your own BBQ dinner
  • Sydney Opera House Tour
    A$37
17 Sydney

This morning we’re heading out of the city & into the country for our included Blue Mountain’s day trip. The dramatic landscape of gorges (some up to 760m) are massive & will impress with the endless views into the distance. We’ll take a casual hike along the Jamison Ridge to the top of Wentworth Falls, passing a number of lookouts along the way. Next we’ll stop at Leura, a charming country village before visiting the iconic ‘Three Sisters’ – the famous rock formations. With amazing views & photos to keep your memories fresh when you get home, we’ll head back to Sydney.

This city is home to some of the world’s best shopping, so it’s a haven for those who love to shop! From Aussie favourites like Sass & Bide, Witchery, Mimco, Billabong, Sportsgirl & all round favourite General Pants Co, there is plenty to tempt at every turn. Explore the unique boutiques in beautiful surroundings at the historic Queen Victoria Building right in the heart of the city. It’s a short walk from Darling Harbour, Hyde Park, the Botanic Gardens and Sydney shopping Mecca Pitt Street Mall – home to Australian retail giants Myer and David Jones.

Say farewell to your new friends as your trip winds up upon arrival back in Sydney this afternoon.

Hotel Breakfast

  • Day trip out to the stunning Blue Mountains
  • See the famous Three Sisters rock formation
  • Hike along the ridge overlooking Jamison Valley
18 Finish Sydney

Say a final farewell to your new friends as your trip ends this morning.

Breakfast

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What's Included

All of this & more, included as standard on your trip.

Accommodation

  • 17 nights multi-share accommodation: 10 nights in hotels & resorts, 2 nights on a yacht, 1 night in a lodge, 1 night in an eco-lodge, 1 night in a hostel, 1 night in a surf school village, 1 night at a cattle station lodge
  • Modern, air-conditioned coach with power outlets for charging
  • Rainforest adventure on days 4 & 5
  • National Park fees, local taxes & service charges

Team

  • An experienced & professional Trip Manager & Driver team
  • Sightseeing tours of all major cities

Food

  • 26 meals:
  • 17 breakfasts
  • 2 lunches
  • 7 dinners

Inclusions

  • 4 World Heritage Sites visited
  • Aboriginal experience at Mossman Gorge
  • Mangrove boardwalk with our expert guide
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Me Time

  • Jungle Surfing
  • Kayaking Adventure
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On a budget?

  • The average cost per day for this tour is US$139
  • You only need a US$200 deposit to book and pay in full 45 days before you travel.
  • Pay in installments, with Contiki Easy Pay

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