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Help with Australia/NZ itinerary in October.

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Aug 26th, 2014, 10:28 AM
  #1
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Help with Australia/NZ itinerary in October.

Hello all. I'm new to this forum so am looking for a bit of guidance.

I'm planning a trip to Australia and NZ in October, and would love some help on the itinerary. I've not yet booked but am planning to fly from NYC or potentially LAX/SFO. I'm trying to decide/figure out what the must-do's are in the region and if it makes sense to do NZ first or AU? I'm assuming that there are more flight options in/out of SYD. Planning to stay about 3 weeks (travel inclusive).

A couple of notes:

- I have a good friend in Sydney so will likely spend 5 or so days there. We are attending an event there on Oct. 18th.
- I'm trying to figure out the best combination of miles/points (DL Skymiles GM/AMEX) that can get me a biz class (or at least prem econ on VA) flight, but i'm also willing to throw some $$ at the problem in the name of comfort on this VERY long flight...
- I'm a big foodie and wine enthusiast... not so interested in outdoors (hiking, etc.).

Any and all help you could offer would be great!
robynsj106 is offline  
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Aug 26th, 2014, 10:43 AM
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If you are interested in wine, then you may want to check out the Hunter Valley outside of Sydney or the Barossa Valley outside of Adelaide. For urban sightseeing (since you mentioned you're not interested in outdoors), I would suggest Sydney and Melbourne. And in NZ, there are several wine areas as well, but the only ones I've visited are on Waiheke Island, which is nice for a day or even a weekend and is easily accessible from Auckland.
tripplanner001 is offline  
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Aug 26th, 2014, 11:13 AM
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Robyn - welcome! I hope that you find the advice and views that you find here useful. Most of us have been in the same position as you once, in fact that was me last year, wanting some tips on how to plan our 5 week trip to Australia and NZ. When i started to plan, i thought that we would have time to see loads of things but when it came down to it, we had to miss quite a lot out, even with that amount of time.

Given that NZ is more about the great outdoors [though there's a lot of good food and wine too], and you only have 3 weeks [i know it sounds like a long time but you'll be surprised how quickly it goes] I wonder if you ought to restrict yourself to Australia this time. A trip combining the tropical north of Queensland [well worth seeing even if your main interests lie elsewhere], Sydney, Melbourne and the Great Ocean Drive would give you plenty of variety.
annhig is online now  
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Aug 26th, 2014, 01:29 PM
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Well said, Annhig.

Based on your stated interests, Robyn, I would also suggest that you focus this trip entirely on Australia. (New Zealand really is all about the outdoors.) If you visited Sydney (and the Hunter Valley for wine), Melbourne (and the Yarra Valley for wine) and did a driving trip along the Great Ocean Road from Melbourne to Adelaide with stops in the Coonawarra region and Barossa Valley (for wine), you would easily fill your 3 weeks.
longhorn55 is offline  
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Aug 26th, 2014, 07:00 PM
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Just to throw another suggestion into the mix, consider Mudgee about 260 kms South west of Sydney with a well developed locavore food and wine trail.


www.visitmudgeeregion.com.au/
sartoric is offline  
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Aug 30th, 2014, 02:09 PM
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And as a New Zealander who visits Australia often, I would also recommend you just visit Australia this time. We spent 3 weeks in the Northern Territory 3 years ago, and really only skimmed the surface of the places we visited. The same with the 2 weeks spent in Cairns, and several weeks in Sydney. Australia is a big country, deserving some time to explore it. Including travel times in your 3 weeks will give you at most 17 days actual visiting time. 5 days in Sydney leaves 12 days to visit elsewhere.

There are some fabulous vineyards and restaurants in NZ, but in both islands requiring, in your time frame, flying between the islands. Come and visit us another time, perhaps in February / March when the summer weather is more settled rather than in the slightly unpredictable springtime of October.
dottyp is offline  
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Aug 30th, 2014, 02:23 PM
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That makes so much sense Dotty. Our hottest period is Feb-March in Australia,
so a visit to our Kiwi cousins then is the perfect plan.
Bokhara2 is offline  
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Aug 31st, 2014, 01:27 AM
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Thanks, Bokhara2.
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