Lying between the South Pacific and Indian Ocean, Australia and New Zealand are one of the most popular cruise destinations. Famous for its diverse wildlife and climate, Australia is popularly known as the land where deserts meet mountains and rainforests. You can take a tour of the iconic Sydney Opera House and Harbor Bridge, or have a peek at the dolphins along Melbourne’s coastline or explore The Great Barrier Reef. The adventures awaiting you in this place are endless.
New Zealand is well known for its natural beauty. The country is separated into two parts – North and South islands by the Cook Straight. The North Island has the two biggest cities, Auckland and Wellington while the South Island is home to wide-open fields, mountains, fjords and glaciers. All this makes New Zealand live up to its reputation of being a natural wonderland.
New Zealand and Australia cruises mainly depart from Sidney or Melbourne with some departing from Auckland. Some itineraries venture into exotic destinations like New Caledonia, Fiji in South Pacific, Tahiti and Bora Bora in French Polynesia, even going all the way to Hawaii. The length of the sailings vary widely. Australia is a year-round cruise destination, with the high season being between October and April. This is when the widest variety of itineraries are offered. New Zealand is at its best during the months of December, January and February with the cruise season starting in October and ending in April.
Nestled between the Gold Coast to the south and the Sunshine Coast to the north, Brisbane makes the most of its magnificent beaches, offering an ideal blend of Aussie ease and urban energy. Wander in the lush Botanical Gardens, shop in the Queen Street Mall, or enjoy the countless cafes and restaurants along the banks of the Brisbane River. This laid-back city is the place to stretch your legs and relax!
Australia’s ‘Garden City’ rejoices in its greenery, from the Fitzroy Gardens to the magnificent Royal Botanical Gardens. Hiding behind the sky-scrapers along the Yarra River are the graceful 19th-century mansions of the city’s Gold Rush years. Being in the food capital of Australia, you should try out one of the sixty different international cuisines available here.
Sydney is Australia’s showcase city: the oldest settlement, the largest and most thriving city, the cultural melting pot. It curves around idyllic Port Jackson, where sandstone cliffs and bright islands complement the Opera House and Harbor Bridge. Wander the cobbled colonial streets of the historic Rocks quarter, or tour the mansions of Watson’s Bay.
New Zealand’s largest city is draped over seven volcanoes and wrapped around Waitemata Harbour, which means ‘sea of sparkling waters’. Being the world’s largest Polynesian city, you can shop for Polynesian crafts on Queen Street and many other places. A trip to Mt. Eden to overlook the ‘City of Sails’ is also a thrilling experience.
Exquisite architecture, great museums, and fabulous dining establishments make Wellington the city it is. The accommodations and amenities are superb, and the summer offers plenty of hot beach spots.
There are many more ports waiting to amuse you down under. Check out our Australia & New Zealand cruises for more information on these iconic destinations.
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