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Australia New Zealand - help with itinerary

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My husband and I are planning a trip to Aust/NZ over Thanksgiving. Avid travelers in our mid thirties, no kids. Arrive Saturday into Sydney, depart following Monday to US from NZ on American. Unfortunately length of trip not negotiable for us:( We'd like to see Sydney, Great Barrier Reef and as much as we can in New Zealand. Any ideas on best way to split up time? Don't care for big cities on vacations, so likely to start the trip by spending 1-2 days in Syndey then head north to yhe Reef? What city do we fly to and stay to explore Queensland/ the Reef/ Whitsunday Is? Can you suggest a beach city/resort destination? We like Caribbean like warm beaches! Heading to NZ from there, we want to be active and explore the best of NZ 's outdoors and food. Where should we go in NZ?

All intinery suggestions are welcome as we haven't booked the flights yet!!

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