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Australia & New Zealand Holidays

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Australia
New Zealand


Australia & New Zealand - Thomas Cook Signature



Destination Guide – Holidays to Australia & New Zealand


Introduction

Rich in natural beauty, cosmopolitan city living, interesting native culture and opportunities for adrenaline-fuelled activities, holidays in Australia and New Zealand offer something for everyone. Upon arrival here, you’ll find it’s most definitely worth the trip! From bustling cities like Sydney and Auckland where you can enjoy the best in world cuisine, nightlife, shopping and sights, to natural wonders like the Great Barrier Reef, Uluru, and New Zealand’s Milford - there are plenty of things to get you outdoors and marvelling at the power and scale of the natural world.


Things to do
Northern Territory and Uluru

Head to the Northern Territory to explore Australia’s untamed heart. The drive along the Stuart Highway reveals Australia’s ancient, barren landscape, with outback scrubland on all sides - offset by the characteristic russet-coloured earth and startlingly blue skies. Your first glimpse of Uluru, as you drive along the 285-mile road from Alice Springs, is simply breathtaking. As you get closer, this giant monolith standing isolated in the desert becomes ever more impressive. Head to the Sunset Viewing Spot for great photos and to watch the rock change colour as the light conditions alter from yellow and orange to red and purple before the sun goes down.


The Great Barrier Reef

A visit to the Great Barrier Reef is an unmissable part of any holiday to Australia and New Zealand. This dazzling stretch of coral reef fringes the coast of north east Australia, is the largest on the planet and has the richest submarine ecology in the world. Where the water is shallow, it’s possible to stand on the reef - wearing shoes to protect your feet. Above the water line the ocean stretches out as far as the eye can see and you’ll encounter sea urchins, anemones, clams, tropical fish and corals in a dizzying array of peach, pink, and white hues. It’s the ultimate place for snorkellers and divers, but there’s plenty more to do further inland, including bushwalks, hiking on the outlying islands, and white water rafting.


Queenstown, NZ’s Adventure Capital

Queenstown is New Zealand’s Mecca for thrill-seekers. It is the ultimate adventure resort, reputed to be the home of bungee jumping, and has quite an incredible range of activities for thrill-seekers to try out. But you don’t need to be a bungee jumper or hang-glider to appreciate all that Queenstown has to offer. Those who prefer a more relaxed pace can opt for a leisurely cruise on Lake Wakatipu, or a journey in the skyline gondola for outstanding views of the rugged landscape and town below. Sit back and relax as it carries you 450m above Queenstown and Lake Wakatipu to the top of Bob’s peak. Make sure you bring your camera for the incredible panoramic views at the top.


Where to go

From Australia’s exciting beachside cities to New Zealand’s majestic fjords, choosing where to go on your luxury holiday depends very much on what you want do see and do. The diversity of landscape, climate and range of activities on offer means there’s something for everyone. For beach lovers, Australia offers sociable, lively, seaside fun, either close to the action in its major cities, or beautiful isolated stretches of sand and sea where you can escape the hustle and bustle of city life and relax. A few days close to the outback is a great way to connect with the real Australia – don’t miss the chance to admire the canopy of stars unpolluted by city lights. New Zealand’s unparalleled natural beauty, striking landscapes and ancient Maori culture are perfect for those who love to get out and explore during their 5 star holiday. With ample opportunities for trekking and hiking, nature trails, and visits to geological marvels like Milford Sound and Rotorua, New Zealand is all about getting out in the open and admiring the power and beauty of the natural world.

Best time to go:
Their location in the Southern Hemisphere makes Australia and New Zealand ideal holiday destinations when our own weather isn’t up to much. Although Australia is a huge country subject to climactic variations, it is still possible to arrange your trip to get the best of the weather, as long as you follow a few principles. Summertime, November to February, is the best time to visit Australia’s south coast, when the weather is hot and sunny and the temperature rarely drops below 20 degrees. The Northern part of Australia, including the cities of Darwin and Cairns are more subject to monsoon-type weather, and you may find it hot and wet during the summer months. Spring and autumn are both great times to take holidays in Australia or New Zealand , as the weather is less extreme and you may find fewer crowds than in the peak summer period. For good sunshine and long days, visit New Zealand during the same summer period between November and February. If you’re more into winter sports, it is better to travel between June and August.

 

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