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australia new zealand trip advice

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Hi, new member here.
My husband and I are starting to plan a trip in Australia/New Zealand. We are in our mid 50s and live in the US, New Hampshire to be exact. We don't mind staying in the cities but we want to see wildlife and my husband would love to visit Coober Pedy. We also love to eat and appreciate fine dining.
We are planning a 2-3 week trip.
So a few questions to being with:

1: What is the best time to year to visit.
2. What is the best way to get there; which airline?
3. Since this is our first big trip, do you suggest a tour? If so is there a company you
recommend. We have looked at Tucks, any thoughts?

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