15 Night cruise departing from Sydney to Auckland onboard Star Breeze.
Start your adventure in Sydney by getting your feet wet at Bondi Beach and visiting the Opera House. On Christmas Day, embark on Phillip Island where hundreds of penguins come ashore at sunset. From Melbourne, head to Yarra Valley to taste exquisite local wines. Retreat to nature in Launceston, famous for its Cataract Gorge or sip sparkling wine along the Tamar River. Explore Freycinet National Park's pink granite peaks and snorkel in secluded bays. Sail into Tasmania's picturesque Hobart Harbor tucked beneath Mount Wellington where the lively Salamanca Market and Bonorong Wildlife Park await. Relax en route to New Zealand and cruise scenic Fiordland National Park. Upon arriving in Bluff, snap a photo of the Bluff international sign and sample world-renowned Bluff oysters. Discover Dunedin's Scottish and Maori heritage and Edwardian architecture. From Lyttelton, ride a double-decker bus to Christchurch to visit the International Antarctic Centre or spend the afternoon punting on the Avon River. Wellington invites food lovers to taste their way through town, or venture out to the famous site of the Lord of the Rings. Set sail for the finale in Auckland, where the 1000-ft Sky Tower offers views of the city's natural beauty and urban landscape.
Highlights of this cruise:
Best known for its distinctive harbor-front Opera House, which is a UNESCO site, Sydney is viewed as not only one of the most expensive cities in the world, but also one of the most livable. The metropolis surrounds the world's largest natural harbor and covers about 44 miles. Sydney's outdoor platform, the Skywalk offers a 360 degree view of the city and surrounding area. Other sites to see include the Royal National Park, the Royal Botanic Garden, and the Sydney Harbour Bridge
Phillip Island, Australia
The biggest attraction of tiny port Phillip Island is the daily Penguin Parade at sunset when the little penguins come ashore. There is also a large colony of Australian fur seals and there are koalas and birds in the mangroves along Cape Woolamai. The Phillip Island Circuit is also well-known for its motorcycle and car racing track.
The capital and most populated city of the state of Victoria, Melbourne is located on the large natural bay of Port Philip. The abundance of parks and gardens here has resulted in Melbourne being referred to as Australia's Garden City. The Story of the Kelly Gang, the world's first feature film, was shot in Melbourne in 1906 and On the Beach was filmed here in 1959. The city's delightful mix of architecture includes the UNESCO-listed Royal Exhibition building, the Venetian-gothic style Old Stock Exchange, St. Paul's Cathedral, and Flinders Street Station.
Freycinet National Park, Australia
Freycinet National Park is full of natural assets, pink granite peaks, secluded bays, including iconic Wineglass Bay, white-sand beaches and an abundance of birdlife including black swans. Swimming, snorkeling and diving are all excellent activities in the pristine waters here.
Hobart, Tasmania, Australia
Be prepared for an island setting of stunning landscapes, old-growth forests, picturesque harbor and the rugged Mount Wellington in Hobart's background. Hobart offers excellent local produce, interesting Tasmanian wines and eclectic art in the galleries. The capital of Tasmania is not only an Antarctic gateway, but also the gateway to the UNESCO Tasmanian wilderness.
Scenic Cruising Fiordland National Park, New Zealand Doubtful Sound
Be out on deck to experience the beauty of Fiordland National Park, the largest of the 14 national parks in New Zealand. It is a major part of the Te Wahipounamu UNESCO site. Two rare bird species live here - the Takahe, thought to be extinct was found in the mountains here, and the Kakapo, the world's only flightless parrot has refuge here as well.
Bluff, New Zealand
Bluff is the oldest European settlement in New Zealand and the gateway to Stewart Island, the home of Bluff oysters, said to be the best in the world. Get a picture of the Bluff international sign at Stirling Point. Visit the Bluff Maritime Museum. Hike Bluff Hill, visit Stewart Island and make sure to try the oysters.
Dunedin (Port Chalmers), New Zealand History Building
A description of Dunedin would include its Scottish and Maori heritages, its Victorian and Edwardian architecture, its dramatic landscape that encourages hiking and cycling and a large student population. The nearby Otago Peninsula is home to colonies of albatross, sea lions and the rare yellow-eyed penguins. Dunedin has one of the world's steepest streets - Baldwin Street and is a UNESCO designated City of Literature.
Lyttlelton, (Christchurch), New Zealand
Established as a landing point for colonial settlers on their way to Christchurch, Lyttelton has been known as the Gateway to Canterbury. It is only 7 miles (11.8 km) from Christchurch. Take a double-decker bus in Christchurch to the Botanic Gardens, the International Antarctic Centre, Canterbury Museum or North Hagley Park. There are plenty of eclectic shops, cafes and bars on your way.
Wellington, New Zealand
The inviting compact capital of New Zealand has a waterfront promenade, sandy beaches, an interesting working harbor and colorful wood houses in the surrounding hills. Strong winds frequently through the strait here have given it the nickname Windy Wellington. Work in a visit to Te Papa, an interactive and innovative national museum that showcases Maori culture, art heritage and the fascinating history of New Zealand.
Auckland, New Zealand
The first thing to notice when you see Auckland is the 1,076-foot-high Sky Tower, the tallest free-standing structure in the Southern Hemisphere offering amazing panoramic views. The area was settled by the Maori around 1350 and was settled by Europeans in the early 1800s. The land here is rich and fertile and the economy is good. Take a ferry to Waiheke Island, known for its beaches, forests, vineyards and olive groves or stroll along Ponsonby Street known for arts, cafes, culture and historic villas.