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Discover some of the best luxury experiences in Australia and New Zealand

  • Inspiration
  • By Francesca Brooking
  • Published 10 January 2023

Australasia is a region comprised of Australia, New Zealand and smaller neighbouring islands nations including Fiji and French Polynesia. 

It’s a diverse region where tropical seas lap palm fringed beaches, vineyards crest the top of lush rolling hills and snow-capped mountains touch the clouds. Australasia has a wealth of Indigenous cultures and vibrant cities to explore too. So, when you’re spoiled for choice, where should you go? 

In this article, we’re diving into some of the best luxury things to do in Australia and New Zealand. From luxury cruise charters to five-star tours, get ready to expand your bucket list in Australasia. 


Ayer's Rock

Ayer's Rock

Cruise through the Great Barrier Reef

Without a doubt, one of the most legendary landmarks in Australia is the Great Barrier Reef. The world’s largest reef system, this UNESCO World Heritage Site stretches 348,700 square kilometres across the Coral Sea off the coast of Queensland. 

The best way to see the Great Barrier Reef is on a yacht cruise and snorkelling excursion from Cairns. Departing from Marlin Marina, this adult-only day trip is packed with water-based activities in some of the most beautiful reefs. 

Guests can go as beginner-friendly or as advanced as they feel comfortable, with glass-bottomed boat excursions on the water, snorkelling or even scuba diving. All divers will need to be certified beforehand. 

Relax in the warm aquamarine waters of Hastings Reef and Saxon Reef and look out for the incredible abundance of marine life therein such as sea turtles, friendly reef sharks, and butterfly fish. Prefer to see the sights from a private yacht charter? We can make that happen too. 

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Do a stunning down under tour

Want to make sure you hit all the best sights in Australia? Our 'stunning down under' tour is just the ticket. The 14-night itinerary takes you on a whirlwind trip to Melbourne, Ayers Rock (Uluru), Queensland, and Sydney – all in complete luxury. 

Start with four nights at The Langham Melbourne and be right in the centre of Australia’s cultural capital. 

From there you’ll have the chance to do a private tour of the Great Ocean Road, an iconic 240-kilometre stretch of coastline with landmarks such as Twelve Apostles and Hopetoun Falls.  Look out for the infamous Shipwreck Coast that’s claimed almost 700 ships!

Next, it’s a domestic plane transfer to Ayer’s Rock where you’ll spend three nights in glamping luxury at Longitude 131°. These five-star luxury outback tents immerse you in nature from the moment you arrive. Make use of the guided hikes in the area or relax at the on-site spa. 

Of course, you can’t visit Australia without seeing the Great Barrier Reef. The penultimate stop takes you to Qualia, a gorgeous, secluded retreat on Hamilton Island with views overlooking the Coral Sea and Great Barrier Reef. Here, embark on a luxury snorkelling cruise, enjoy the spa or tee off at the 18-hole championship course. 

The last stop on your tour is Sydney where the Four Seasons Hotel will be your home for four nights. The city’s legendary harbour and opera house is a mere stone’s throw away; the perfect end to an unforgettable trip. 



Charter an adventure cruise

True North is a multi-award-winning adventure cruise operator specialising in action-packed itineraries for the discerning traveller. 

Ships are smaller than your average cruise liner plus passenger numbers are limited to an exclusive 36 guests onboard. For pure luxury, stay in an Explorer Class Stateroom complete with a king-size bed and ensuite. 

For extra exclusivity, charter the entire cruise and have it all to yourself. The perfect experience for friends, family, and incentive travellers, you can choose from a 36-passenger ship or 22-passenger ship. Both can offer flexible voyage itineraries and durations. 

Itineraries include sailing the mystical Kimberley Region of Western Australia or along the Australian coast, ranging from four to thirteen nights. You can even take a trip to Papua New Guinea! 

Whichever excursion you choose, it’s packed with thrilling activities that invite you to experience a unique side to the destination. 

How does flying over the wilderness in an air-conditioned True North helicopter sound? Or snorkelling in crystal clear waters? Or why not sharpen your skills with expedition photography?

All cruises have a biologist onboard, so you’ll learn something new wherever you go too. 

Interested in expedition cruises? Discover our favourite cruise adventure in Argentina!

New Zealand

Milford Sound

Milford Sound

See Milford Sound

Arguably one of the most beautiful sights in the whole of New Zealand, Milford Sound is a fjord on the southwest coast of the South Island within Fiordland National Park. 

Here waterfalls cascade down the sheer mountains sides with Mitre Peak standing the tallest among them. It’s a dramatic landscape that’s earned it a UNESCO World Heritage status. 

It typically experiences rainfall 182 days in a year but don’t let that put you off. Rain makes it come alive. Waterfalls swell and roar into the fjord while mountains cut a dramatic shape in the low-hanging clouds. 

So, what can you do here? The most popular experience is a boat trip across the fjord. Most typically last a few hours but we recommend splashing out on an overnight cruise aboard Fiordland Discovery. 

Milford Sound is one of several fjords you’ll explore during this boat trip. Plus, you can enjoy three-course meals, excursions, and climate-controlled ensuite cabins. The boat also has a helicopter landing pad!

Go wine tasting on Waiheke Island

Calling all wine lovers! New Zealand absolutely spoils you when it comes to top quality wineries. One of our favourite places to go is Waiheke Island, about 40 minutes by ferry from Auckland. It’s possible to get there by helicopter too!

Waiheke Island’s mild climate makes it a haven for vineyards and olive trees. There are around 30 boutique wineries here in fact. One of the best on the island is Cable Bay Vineyards with its impressive cellar door and fine dining restaurant. 

For amazing views and award-winning wines, you can’t go wrong with Mudbrick Vineyard set high on the hills. Casita Miro is a vineyard full of Spanish character with its Gaudi-inspired mosaics while Man O’War has a beautiful tasting room right on the beachfront. 

Call our personal travel managers to create a personalised wine-tasting itinerary with private transfers. 

If wine-tasting holidays are your thing, check out our top favourite wine experiences in South Africa!

Seek thrills in Queenstown

If you choose one non-negotiable destination to visit in New Zealand, make it Queenstown. The resort town sits on Lake Wakatipu in the South Island’s Central Otago region. 

Set against the backdrop of the Southern Alps, Queenstown is beautiful as it is popular. In winter, it’s buzzing with snow sports enthusiasts hitting the slopes at Coronet Peak and the Remarkable Mountain Range (yes, they’re really called that!). 

In summer, thrill-seekers arrive to make the most of the extreme sports which have made Queenstown the ‘adventure capital of the world.’ Here you can go bungee jumping off Kawarau Gorge Suspension Bridge and jetboating on the Shotover and Dart rivers. Skydives are also possible. 

For a more laidback trip, the town is a fantastic base from which to explore the local wine region. We recommend staying at Eichardt's Private Hotel with its range of luxury suites, private apartments and penthouses. 

Heli hike among glaciers

We’re all about ticking off the bucket list and New Zealand certainly pulls out all the stops. One of the best things to do is a Fox or Franz Josef Glacier hike and scenic flight.

 Both glaciers both reside in Westland Tai Poutini National Park on the West Coast of New Zealand's South Island, about 20 kilometres apart. They’re two of the fastest moving glaciers in the world and you can see them up close on an unforgettable adventure. 

Spy both glaciers from above in a 30-minute scenic helicopter ride with views over Mount Cook and Mount Tasman. Weather permitting, you may even be able to make snowy landfall and explore the glaciers on foot. 

Alternatively, book a helicopter ride to Franz Josef Glacier and do a two-hour guided hike among ice caves, crevasses, pinnacles, and seracs. You’ll be kitted out with all the equipment you need for a safe excursion of a lifetime. 

Discover more bucket list experiences in our 2023 travel roundup!

Australasia is a region made up of island nations with Australia and New Zealand being the largest among them. 

Both countries offer so many incredible bucket list experiences that will keep any traveller happy whether they’re a culture vulture, nature lover or adventure enthusiast. 

This list may only touch the surface of what’s to do in these beautiful countries, but we hope it’s given you a glimpse of their potential. 

Call our personal travel managers today and get insider tips about booking a trip of a lifetime in Australasia. 

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