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some questions about upcoming trip to Australia and New Zealand

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Will be spending 6 weeks on our trip, about 4 weeks in Australia and about 12 days in NZ South Island.
Will be arriving in Sydney Sept. 4th, driving to Blue Mountains, return to Sydney Sept 7th.
Sept. 11 fly to Cairns, spend a week there, will have a rental car.
Fly to Alice Springs Sept 18, have 2 nights in Alice then do a 3 day 2 night tour to Uluru, returning to Alice Sept 22. Spend 3 nights in Alice before flying to Melbourne Sept.25th. Will we need a car in Alice or is there other transportation/tours available? I know we want to visit the Desert Park.....looks like the Alice Wanderer bus can get us to most places?
Our plan for Melbourne is rental car and drive GOR and exploring that area before returning to Melbourne and flying to NZ. Don't have firm date yet for flight... thinking Oct.2 or 3 to Christchurch, rental car, explore the area several days, drive to Queenstown, explore that region, including Milford Sound. Would likely spend night in Te Anau going to Milford Sound and on return trip to Queenstown. Probably fly to Sydney on Oct14, flying back to the US on Oct 16.
Will want to pack as little as possible, will have washer/dryer available several places. Would like some hints about what weather to typically expect., I know Alice/Ayers Rock will probably be quite warm, and I assume NZ will still be cool/cold/damp.
Any comments, suggestions, advice appreciated.

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