WONDERS DOWN UNDER

AUSTRALIAN CRUISES

From urban verve to outback wilderness, Australia is a year-round sunny paradise.


A large island nation, Australia delivers the best of both the city and the country, the beach and the bush. The locals here are a laidback and friendly bunch, with a dry sense of humor and their own slang language. Explore cosmopolitan Sydney, home to Bondi Beach's turquoise waters and the architecturally unique Sydney Opera House. Cruise to Australia and visit Queensland to experience the Whitsunday Islands, where you can snorkel to see the UNESCO World Heritage-listed Great Barrier Reef, the world's largest living organism. For an authentic Australian adventure, head to the outback: Check out Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park, with its red dome known as Ayers Rock.

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Sydney Harbour Bridge and Road
SWOON OVER SYDNEY
Visit Australia and tour Sydney's urban attractions like the Harbour Bridge, Sydney Opera House and Taronga Zoo. For outdoor fun, nap on the white sands of Bondi Beach or scale the magnificent rock formations of the Blue Mountains.

Seaside Road and Beach, Melbourne Australia
MEET MELBOURNE
Melbourne is a hipster haven and Australia's culture, coffee and sports capital. Grab a flat black (the Australian version of an Americano, with espresso and hot water) at Patricia on Little Bourke Street, then rent a car and start off on the Great Ocean Road, which will take you along sweeping views of Australia's southern coast.

Australia Outback Waterfall
HEAD TO THE OUTBACK
In the remote Northern Territory, visit the UNESCO World Heritage-listed Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park: See the famous dome-shaped red rock rising out of the Central Australian Desert. Or check out Kakadu National Park, where you can see ancient rock art at Nourlangie or hike to the hidden waterfalls at Motor Car, Twin or Jim Jim Falls.

Australia Great Barrier Reef
KING AMONG REEFS
Snorkel, dive and swim along the Great Barrier Reef, the world's largest coral reef — you can even charter a glass-bottomed boat to stay dry while seeing the only living organism visible from outer space. The reef is accessible from places like Cairns, Airlie Beach, Townsville and Port Douglas in Queensland.

Australia Kangaroo On Beach
ISLAND HOP
In Queensland, take a day trip to the surrounding tropical islands: Check out Fitzroy Island and its National Park, where you can laze on the white sands of the coral beach or go bird-watching for for emerald doves and white-bellied sea eagles. See the colored sands at postcard-perfect Fraser Island, or explore the wild island state of Tasmania during your vacation.

South Pacific Turquoise Water Beach
PICK A BEACH
Explore Western Australia's Cape Le Grand National Park, which offers stunning coastline set against rolling heathlands filled with kangaroos. Check out Queensland's Gold Coast, where you'll find local favorite Nobby Beach (known colloquially as "Nobby's"). Or get lost in Tasmania's Freycinet National Park, where pink granite cliffs overlook white-sand beaches and clear blue waves.

EXPEDITIONS DOWN UNDER

SAY "G'DAY" TO AN OUTBACK ADVENTURE

Choose your Australian vacation adventure: Relax on a tropical island or one of thousands of beaches, hike in a remote national park or venture into the vibrant city.
 

SAMPLE SYDNEY

A sampler cruise from Sydney is a great way to experience both Australia's biggest city and an exciting cruise.


 

BE TANTALIZED BY TASMANIA

Tasmania is an underrated Australian state that's home to Cradle Mountain, the World Heritage-listed Port Arthur Historic Site and the eccentric Museum of Old and New Art among other things to do.


From the Bush to the Beach

From urban verve to outback wilderness, Australia is a year-round sunny paradise

Quick Getaways
Queensland
Tasmania
New Zealand
South Pacific

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WHAT TO KNOW
BEFORE YOU GO
Arriving in Australia

The best time to visit Australia depends on where you want to go. The Great Barrier Reef, Queensland and the Northern Territory are best explored during dry season (May to September), while summer is the optimal time to visit southern states like Victoria and Tasmania.

Weather-wise, northern Australia enjoys an endless summer, but it does get cold in Victoria and Tasmania during winter. Meanwhile, Melbourne is known for displaying four seasons in one day, so always have a jacket and umbrella on hand, just in case.

 
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Insider Tips

1 In northern Australia, be aware that stingers (dangerous jellyfish) swarm the seas in the summer, from approximately October to March.
 
2 Tipping is not customary in Australia.
 
3 The universal phone number for taxi services across the country is 131008.
 
 

HOW TO
DINE DOWN UNDER 

"Fair dinkum" — Aussie slang for "authentic" or "genuine" — Australian cuisine has been influenced by England, New Zealand and even Italy. However, there's nothing more Australian than throwing some steak and snags (sausages) on a barbie (barbecue) — no shrimps allowed.

Australian Classic Steak and Frites
POPULAR PUB GRUB
There are two dishes to order at an Aussie pub: a chicken parmigiana (called a parmi Down Under) or a burger, which will usually come topped with Australian specialties like beetroot or pineapple. Of course, you can always go for a classic steaks: Porterhouses are popular in Victoria, while rump steaks are particularly beloved in New South Wales.

Australian Biscuits
THE REAL BISCUIT
Australia has some delicious sweet treats, but it's perhaps best-known for perfecting the biscuit. Try Anzac biscuits with oats and golden syrup, lamingtons — a sponge square covered in chocolate and coconut — and Tim Tams, the local favorite brand of chocolate-covered biscuits.

Australian Meat Pies
IT'S PIE TIME
Meat pies — with a flaky pastry crust baked around a savory filling of ground meat (typically beef or lamb) and spices — are a traditional Australian lunch or snack found in bakeries across the country. Another favorite is the Chiko Roll, similar to a large spring roll but filled with the signature Aussie ingredients of mutton, celery, barley, rice, carrots and spices.

RELATED PORTS

The Australian coast is dotted with beautiful ports, like Esperance, to explore. In Queensland, Cairns and Airlie Beach are both gateways to the Great Barrier Reef. Meanwhile, Darwin is a gateway to the Northern Territory's rugged natural sights, including Kakadu and Litchfield National Parks, and Uluru.

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