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KEC Sep 12th, 2002 11:07 AM

Please help with 6 week Aust/NZ itinerary
Hello,<BR>My husband and I (in our late 20s) will be traveling to Australia and NZ June-August of 2003. We don't have our plane tickets yet, but we will be booking them soon. We would like to spend 1-2 weeks in NZ and 4-5 weeks in Australia. We can have one stop-over, and we can fly "open jaws", so we are trying to choose 3 airports from the following list:<BR><BR>Australia: Adelaide, Alice Springs, Ayers Rock, Brisbane, Cairns, Canberra, Darwin, Goldcoast, Gove, Hobart, Mackay, Maroochydore, Melbourne, Perth, Proserpine, Rockhampton, Sydney, Townsville <BR><BR>New Zealand: Auckland, Christchurch, Wellington <BR><BR>We will be flying from Los Angeles. <BR><BR>So far, we are thinking of flying into Auckland (as our stop-over) then to Sydney.<BR><BR>We are not sure where we should depart from.<BR><BR>Any suggestions?<BR><BR>Thank you,<BR>KEC

liz Sep 12th, 2002 01:24 PM

If you are from LA I would suggest that for the NZ trip you start in Auckland and perhaps you can end up leaving from Christchurch on the South Island. For my money the south Island is by far the most spectacular with its scenery of snowy mountains ( at that time of year) glaciers and beautiful lakes but if you are not into that sort of thing then the north island is very pretty and I am sure you can spend the time happily there. <BR>As for the airports in Australia I personally at that time of year would do Sydney ( goes without saying) Brisbane and Cairns. Or Sydney Proserpine and Cairns but the two you *must* go into are Sydney and Cairns the final one is really up to you and what you want to do. You can eliminate Canberra ( because its within a short train trip from Sydney anyway) Gove Hobart ( too cold then for a holiday there unless you really want to see it) Rockhampton ( only people who live there actually want to go there) and ditto for Townsville. Tell us what you want to do and see and we can go from there.<BR>Liz<BR>

Alan Sep 12th, 2002 03:52 PM

Hi, KEC!<BR>I am not sure if the "open jaw" applies both to NZ and Australia, but if you can only fly in and out of one New Zealand city, I would make it Christchurch.... the South island has it all over the north when it comes to scenic places to visit.<BR>For Australia: Sydney and Darwin might be an interesting mix. I agree with Liz that a trip to Cairns is a must-do, but since you appear to have quite a lot of time on your hands, you might be advised to leave the Sydney-Cairns-Sydney leg to a side-trip rather than part of your main itinerary... you could buy a cheap package deal for about five days from Sydney. It's not so easy, however, to get to and from Darwin without paying big bucks, so if you can actually do this as part of your base fare, I would say that you should take advantage of this and see a part of Australia that many Australians never get to. And the thought of seeing places as diverse as, say, Milford Sound in New Zealand AND tropical Darwin in one trip is VERY appealing!

Jane Sep 14th, 2002 02:28 PM

Most travelers on their first time to Australia hit the big 3-Sydney, Ayers Rock and Cairns. However after just returning from the Northern Territory I would also recommend Darwin and visit this tropical northland with journey to Aborginal country and seeing Kakadu National Park. If you can flying into both these countries without either being considered a stopover I would recommend a stopover in Figi, one of the most beautiful places on earth. Top New Zealand sights include Bay of Islands, north of Auckland; Auckland, Rotorua, Christchurch, the famous rocks area of Greymouth, Scottish influence in Dunedin, Milford Sound and of course fun-loving Queenstown. I am certified with both the Australian and New Zealand Tourism Boards to help people plan their trips down under. I would depart from either Auckland or Christchurch to fly there to Australia-probably Sydney.

Alan Sep 15th, 2002 04:30 PM

Jane, we don't often get travel agents posting on this board, as it's not encouraged, but your special qualifications might be of help to me; a few weeks ago I tried to give some advice to a poster, and found I wasn't quite sure of my facts, so will you put me right: which is the town in New Zealand which is full of tiny little art-deco shops in the CBD.. streets and streets of mini-Radio-City-Music-Halls? Is it Napier or Hastings? Thanks for the help!

KEC Sep 15th, 2002 04:39 PM

Hi everyone~<BR>Thanks for the responses. We have FF mile tickets on hold right now, but we can change the locations when we call to book if we want to. This is what we have:<BR><BR>-Fly Philadelphia to LA (overnight in LA)<BR>-LA to Auckland (this is our stop-over)<BR>-Travel North Island for 10 days<BR>-Auckland to Sydney<BR>- travel through Aust. for 33 days<BR>- depart from Cairns to LA<BR>- LA to Philly<BR><BR>The places that we would like to go in Australia are: Sydney and environs, Kangaroo Island (too cold in July?), Ayers Rock area, Cairns, Port Douglas, GBR, Daintree<BR><BR>I am still reading the NZ book to decide where we would like to go. We chose the North because we thought that the South would be too cold.<BR><BR>Any recommendations for winter travel? Any places to avoid due to very cold weather? <BR><BR>Thanks for any advice - we really appreciate the help.<BR><BR>KEC<BR>

Jane Sep 15th, 2002 05:39 PM

Message for Alan:<BR><BR>I wonder if the town you might be thinking of is Napier as there is lots of Art Deco in this area; they even offer walking tours of Art Deco areas.??

John Sep 15th, 2002 06:28 PM

Napier...rebuilt in the art deco style after an earthquake

Alan Sep 16th, 2002 05:30 AM

Thanks, Jane and John!

KEC Oct 30th, 2002 09:52 AM

Hello again,<BR>I am posting again because we have our flights finalized, and I would like to get some itinerary suggestions.<BR><BR>1 - fly Philly to LA (overnight LA)<BR>2 - LA to Auckland<BR> 2 weeks to travel N and S Islands<BR>3 - Auckland to Sydney <BR> 4 weeks in Australia<BR>4 - Cairns to LA to Philly<BR><BR>In NZ, we would like to do both North and South Islands. Any suggestions for a good 2 week intinerary?<BR><BR>In Oz, we have 4 weeks. We would like to spend about 5 days in Sydney and about a week in the GBR/Rainforest area.<BR><BR>Any suggestions for how to spend the other 2 weeks?<BR><BR>Some places that I would like to go to are Kangaroo Island, Ayers Rock, and Darwin/Kakadu. I know that it might be difficult (and expensive!) to fit this all in, so I was looking for some itinerary help.<BR><BR>We were thinking of maybe a combination of flying and driving. Is there a good &quot;road trip&quot; between Ayers Rock area and the Top End, for example?<BR><BR>Thank you all so much for taking the time to read my post and give some advice.<BR><BR>Sincerely,<BR>Keri

Debbie Oct 30th, 2002 10:42 AM

Hi Keri,<BR>I went to Australia this past July and the weather was ok. It was cold on Kangaroo Island but it didn't even begin to compare to Philly in Jan. or Feb.! KI was a definate highlight of my trip and I'm glad you'll get to go there. Darwin is also worth going to, especially if you plan to stay in Kakadu for 2 or more days. <BR><BR>I know there is a road leading from Uluru to Darwin (help me someone--Stuart Hwy??) but I haven't a clue how long it would take to drive from one to the other. It's really far!<BR><BR>Good luck w/your planning. You are going to love it in Australia!! (I haven't made it to NZ yet so am not snubbing the Kiwis)<BR><BR>Debbie

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