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As this trip departs from the Vibe Hotel Sydney at 7.30am, accommodation will need to be pre-booked for the previous night. The modern Australian capital of Canberra beckons this morning as we begin our encounter with Southern Australia on a journey through the Southern Highlands. Enjoy a quick stop at historic Berrima, famous for its gaol and early colonial architecture, then 'Connect With Locals' at Gold Creek Station. Here you'll meet 'Local Specialist' Craig Starr and his family for a Welcome Reception. Gain a deeper understanding of life on his farm as you savour the flavours of a traditional Aussie BBQ 'Be My Guest' lunch. On arrival in the 'finest capital in the world', you'll take a guided tour through Parliament House with a 'Local Specialist'. Later, 'Dive Into Culture' during a visit to the Australian War Memorial where you'll hear the evocative lament played by a piper to pay tribute to the Australian servicemen and women who have lost their lives in armed conflicts. Join your Travel Director and fellow travellers tonight for dinner.
Ascend the summit of Mt. Ainsley this morning for panoramic views of a city that was purpose-built to lead a young nation. Cross the mighty Murray River into Victoria and call in to Beechworth, Victoria's best-preserved gold rush town. Enjoy some free time to explore the antique shops, galleries and museum. Reward your sightseeing with a visit to the legendary Beechworth Bakery, self-proclaimed as 'Australia's Greatest Bakery'. You'll overnight in the nearby cathedral city of Wangaratta.
Journey through Glenrowan and Ned Kelly country to cosmopolitan Melbourne for a city sightseeing tour. Discover why Melbourne has justifiably earned its reputation as one of the world's most liveable cities and delve into its Victorian history. Enjoy an evening at leisure to explore this stylish state capital on your terms, perhaps followed by a delicious seafood dinner on the banks of the Yarra?
Discover the heart and soul of Melbourne today, with a full free day to explore its iconic sights. Consider an Optional Experience to the Eureka Skydeck for panoramic views of the city, stretching far beyond its skyscrapers. Or join a Hunt and Gather Food Tour of Queen Victoria Market to immerse yourself in the life, sounds and stories of this historic marketplace. An alternative further afield will see you take a tour to Summerland Beach on Phillip Island to see the famous Little Penguins emerge from the sea and waddle up the beach to their sand dune burrows.
Buckle up for an epic coastal road trip filled with pinch me moments. Your journey along the scenic Great Ocean Road will include a stop at the Mediterranean-inspired seaside village of Lorne and Apollo Bay. Visit the Twelve Apostles, admiring these limestone formations that rise up from the Southern Ocean and tower over the surrounding landscapes. Later, visit Loch Ard Gorge and London Bridge before arriving in Warrnambool.
Encounter some of Australia's native creatures in their natural habitat, keeping a keen eye out for emus, koalas and kangaroos as you join a 'Local Specialist' at Worn Gundidj in Tower Hill State Reserve. 'Dive Into Culture' and gain insights into the local flora, volcanic formations and medicinal practices from an Aboriginal perspective, before crossing the South Australia border to Mt. Gambier to view the Blue Lake. Your next stop is the celebrated wine-making region of Coonawarra, where you'll join a 'Local Specialist' for a tasting at a winery. Continue your journey to the Naracoorte Caves, one of the world's most important fossil sites, where you'll be taken on a guided tour through Alexandra Cave.
Ease into the laidback lifestyle encouraged by the locals of South Australia's Fleurieu Peninsula and visit the seaside town of Victor Harbor at lunchtime. Spend some time at leisure relaxing with fish and chips on its unspoiled beach or consider taking the horse-drawn tram to Granite Island. This afternoon, board your ferry at Cape Jervis and cross to Penneshaw on Kangaroo Island, which provides sanctuary to a multitude of native animals, some of which are found nowhere else. Explore KI's unspoiled natural beauty and indulge in its artisanal food scene at your leisure. Later, 'Dive Into Culture' and join a 'Local Specialist' at Kangaroo Island's only boutique distillery to taste a selection of their handcrafted premium spirits. Dinner tonight is at your hotel.
Today's in-depth exploration of Kangaroo Island includes a visit to the Remarkable Rocks and Admirals Arch in Flinders Chase National Park. 'Join Trafalgar' on a private educational ecology tour of the Trafalgar-sponsored Hanson Bay Wildlife Sanctuary, which was badly affected by last year's bushfires. Your visit will assist with their bushfire recovery plan and wildlife rehabilitation programme. After lunch featuring fresh local produce, join a 'Local Specialist' at Seal Bay Conservation Park for a guided walk among a colony of rare sea lions in one of the country's most important breeding colonies.
Return to the mainland and continue your journey to Adelaide, the 'City of Churches', for an orientation tour, followed by free time to explore on your own or maybe consider an Optional Experience. You could explore the famous Adelaide Central Market, the city's premier food destination or visit the National Wine Centre for tastings and masterclass. This evening is yours to indulge in the city's multi-cultural flavours.
The rolling Adelaide Hills, Hahndorf and the Barossa lay ahead of you today and you'll have the opportunity to sample a number of their world-renowned wines. Enjoy lunch at the South Australian Company Store followed by a visit to Seppeltsfield Barossa to sample some of Trafalgar's favorites with a 'Local Specialist', before touring the surrounding vines. 'Dive into Culture' at the Jam Factory where you'll see local artisans at work, and soap and perfumes being made at the Vasse Virgin Factory. Return to Adelaide through South Australia's lush countryside, followed by a Farewell Dinner with your Travel Director and newfound friends.
Your journey through the beautiful natural landscapes and stylish cities of Southern Australia at its end, say farewell to your fellow travellers as you transfer to Adelaide Airport for your onward flight (flights anytime).
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