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Australia and New Zealand Adventure Cruises

Head to the ‘other side of the world’ and the options for adventure are full of more superb scenery and cultural experiences, from towering fjords to thousand-year-old Aboriginal petroglyphs. And, when it comes to pure, out-and-out expedition style with loads of the ‘something different’ factor, it is hard to beat the epic scope afforded by Australia’s north-west coast, or The Kimberley, as locals know it.

This is a region encompassing enormous contrasts, from dense jungle to arid desert, and many points in between. In the west, you can marvel at all the colours nature can provide, with stunningly red rocks, azure seas and dazzling white-sand beaches. To the north, the jagged coast can only be appreciated from the sea, with rugged inlets and 100-metre waterfalls combining to provide an awe-inspiring vista.

The cities are a strong attraction, too, from historic pearling town of Broome to modern Darwin and its frontier backdrop. The region is also rich in Aboriginal culture, with archaeological sites and galleries full of fascinating artwork. Wildlife – from salt-water crocodiles to all manner of exotic birds – is a given, but the over-riding impression is one of sheer, natural, untouched beauty, from breathtaking horizon to horizon.

Head south and you discover another side of the Australia cruise experience along the great Murray River, with its paddle-steamer heritage. Here the highlights include the spectacular river gorges, a special backwater wildlife boat tour, a tour of the magnificent Barossa Valley wine region, the 19th century frontier settlement of Swan Reach and some of the world’s most significant Aboriginal archaeological sites.

New Zealand offers a similar journey into the awe-inspiring, with snow-capped mountains and active volcanoes jostling with Maori communities and teeming sea life (including sperm whales and dolphins). The islands’ relative isolation encouraged the development of unique flora and fauna, while the modern history is full of British, Dutch and French influences. The cities of Auckland, Napier, Dunedin and Wellington provide a modern-day contrast, while the majestic fjord vistas of Milford Sound and complex Dusky Sound highlight the other-worldly aspect of the region.

Best time to travel to Australia and New Zealand: The Kimberley, April to September; South Australia, March to August; New Zealand, December to March.
Weather: Winter (or ‘dry’ season) in north-west Australia keeps temperatures around 31°C; South Australia varies from warm to hot in the winter; New Zealand is best in their dryer months, with temperatures up to 25°C.
Flight times: Darwin, 18.5 hours from London via Singapore; Adelaide (S. Australia) 20.5 hours, via Singapore; Auckland 21.5 hours from London via Singapore.
Recommended Australia and New Zealand Tours: There are endless opportunities! Visit the Opera House in Sydney, climb Ayers Rock, visit the Aboriginal tribes in the Northern Territories, explore the Great Barrier Reef, or head into the outback.

Other tailor-made pre and post cruise hotel stays and land tours are available on request.

Recommended Australia and New Zealand specialists:

Lindblad Expeditions: The nimble 68-guest Oceania Discoverer is Lindblad’s ideal travel vehicle for their New Zealand adventure cruises – perfect for nosing in and out of the tiny bays and inlets of the South Island, yet expansive enough to provide a full array of creature comforts. More about Lindblad Expeditions

Orion Expedition Cruises: Sampling the best of Australia calls for a special kind of operator and Orion fit the bill perfectly. Their purpose-built 5-star vessel offers genuine luxury, with sumptuous staterooms and magnificent cuisine. Orion also exhibit the kind of specialist local knowledge essential to good adventure and expedition cruising and add a complimentary flight-seeing tour of the amazing Bungle Bungle range in Purnululu National Park. More about Orion Expeditions Cruises

Captain Cook Cruises
: This Australian small-ship specialist offer a fabulous Murray River cruises, on their authentic recreation of a classic stern-wheel paddle-steamer, Murray Princess. More about Captain Cook Cruises

If you would like more information about adventure cruises in Australia and New Zealand, please call one of our Cruise Experts on 0800 008 6677.


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