New Zealand/Australia in October

Aug 10th, 2007, 08:43 AM
  #1  
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New Zealand/Australia in October

I am surprising my husband and taking him to New Zealand and Australia from October 3rd - 20th. We have a conference to go to in Wellington, New Zealand and then we are off to Australia. Itinerary is as follows...

-October 3rd/5th - 9th Wellington, New Zealand
-October 9th - 15th Hayman, Australia
-October 15th - 18th Palm Cove, Australia
-October 18tt - 20th Sydney, Australia

Does anyone have any advice as to what we should do while we are at these destinations? We are both big beach people who love wildlife and water. We aren't real museum/artsy people. We are relaxing vacationers who usually sit by the beach or pool all day with a book. Since we are coming all the way from Michigan though, I want to do some relaxing and some sight seeing/activities. I know my husband probably won't be into full day activities though. We're more interested in 1/2 day activities and then 1/2 day lounge by the beach. While in Wellington for the conference we wanted to visit some vinyards any other ideas while there? At any of these places is there anything like a safari or anywhere we could see kangaroos and other local animals up close? Also, we are looking for cool restraunts in these cities. We like swanky/hip restraunts with good food or any local favorites! This is sort of a "once in a lifetime trip" so is there anything that is a must see? Please help!
jmccuiston is offline  
Aug 10th, 2007, 01:41 PM
  #2  
 
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Please don't see this as a brush-off, but there are a lot of questions here that in the first instance would be best answered by guidebooks - I suggest Lonely Planet's 'Australia', unless they have an 'Australia-NZ' title. This forum works best if you have more specific questions than 'what should I do in Sydney?', which is much like asking 'what should I do in the SF Bay area' - way too many options to cover in a chat environment, I'm afraid.

Your question re Sydney restaurants is more manageable, but I'm not the best person to answer it, I'm afraid.

Also, if you use the search box on this page you can recover past threads on these destinations (for Palm Cove, search also on 'Cairns', 'GBR' say).

I'm sure other posters will chime in, and you should definitely come back with specific questions when you have a better feel for what's available.

I would comment though that many of the best things you can do, like snorkeling on the Reef or visiting the kangaroos at Glenbrook in the Blue Mountains, are full-day activities. This wouldn't bother me - after a couple of hours by a pool or on a beach my wife and I are bored senseless - but you'll need to take that into account.
Neil_Oz is offline  
Aug 10th, 2007, 04:29 PM
  #3  
 
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Posts: 1,283
JM,

I think you've fulfilled your "beachie desires" with Hayman and Palm Cove.

While you've said you're not museum type people, I strongly urge you to visit Te Papa Museum while in Wellington. It's a hands-on, interactive museum with fabulous displays and a chance to learn about New Zealand in a fun, informal way.

Yikes, only 2 days in Sydney? That's a shame.

You can satisfy your wildlife interests either by going to the Taronga Zoo in Sydney (highly suggest the VIP tour, where you get the behind the scenes view, and get to see various animals up close and personal), as well as in Cairns area; although many tours don't pick up in Palm Cove.

Hope this is helpful!

Regards,

Melodie
Certified Aussie Specialist
wlzmatilida is offline  
Aug 10th, 2007, 04:56 PM
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I guess you realise Hayman is probably the most built-up commercial island with the least "nature." It wouldn't be my recommendation for someone interested in nature, but if you want to lie by a pool and read it could be ideal.

For swanky restaurants in Sydney, Tetsuyas is one of the best (book now, it's very hard to get in, phone: 61 2 9267 2900). Est won restaurant of the year in 2006, it's in George st ph: 61 2 9240 3010; Guillaume in the Opera House ph: 61 2 9241 1999.

Swanky in great locations but not in the uber league of those above: Ottoman (modern Turkish) in Pier 2/3, Flying Fish (seafood).

Very good but not swanky are: Billy Kwongs (modern Asian), Golden Century (Chinese seafood specialists), Spice I Am (great Thai).
Susan7 is offline  
Aug 13th, 2007, 01:51 PM
  #5  
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Thanks for all of the advice! Great suggestions! Sorry for not being more specific with my question! I did read all of the books but sometimes things in the travel books are overrated. I wanted to hear it from people who have actually been there instead of some tourist book. Anyways, thanks for the help!
jmccuiston is offline  
Aug 13th, 2007, 04:48 PM
  #6  
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
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The vinyards in the Wellington region are located around Martinborough about an hour and a half drive from Wellington. Put Martinborough in the google search area and you will find lots of information about different wineries.

Wellington is a great city, lots of cafe's, and nearly everything is accessible on foot. A walk down Oriental Parade which is a beach front would be very enjoyable in good weather. The Karori bird sanctuary is also a great place to visit. If you are into jazz there are great jazz bands at the Lido cafe and bar every Saturday and Sunday nights.
nelsonian is offline  

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