6th October 2020
Departing on our opulent ‘Diamond Class’ coach from the Brisbane CBD, we travel south to New Italy for lunch. Our afternoon takes us through Coffs Harbour to Port Macquarie where we stay overnight.
1 Night Stay: Sails Resort, Port Macquarie Bowral
This morning we leave Port Macquarie, take a break at Bulahdelah, and then continue on, arriving at Gosford for lunch. Travelling through Sydney’s western suburbs we head up in to the Southern Highlands.
2 Night Stay: Gibraltar Hotel, Bowral
Today we visit Corbett Gardens, displaying a huge array of tulips, as well as other bright and vibrant springtime bulbs, followed by a guided tour of the Bradman Museum. Enjoy a casual lunch before our afternoon takes us to Fitzroy Falls, situated at the head of the escarpment leading down to the tranquil Kangaroo Valley.
Travelling via Goulburn, we arrive at Tulip Top Gardens, offering 10 acres of magnificent tulips and other spring flowers creating a spectacular display. Hundreds of blossom trees nestle between the flowers and provide a magic pathway to the cascading waterfall and watercourse. Our afternoon takes us to Cockington Green Gardens, showcasing a delightful and fascinating display of meticulously crafted miniature buildings set within beautifully landscaped gardens. Continuing south, this afternoon we arrive at Canberra.
3 Night Stay: Hyatt Hotel Canberra
We start our day with a visit to Canberra’s iconic event Floriade. Showcasing one million flowers in bloom throughout springtime, it is the biggest flower festival in Australia. At 2pm we visit the War Memorial, touring through the Hall of Memory, Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, Pool of Reflection and the Roll of Honour, finishing with a moving closing ceremony. Before returning to our hotel, we take a drive up to Mount Ainslie lookout for magnificent views over Canberra. **Lunch is at your own expense today.
We start our day at the Australian National Botanic Gardens, taking a walk with a knowledgeable guide, to appreciate the beauty and clever adaptations of Australian plants, and the research and effort involved in creating and maintaining the gardens. Next we take a guided tour of the National Arboretum to explore the forests of endangered and symbolic trees from Australia and around the world. After breaking for a picnic lunch here, we finish our day taking a driveby tour of Canberra’s International Embassies and High Commissions en-route to Parliament House. Here our tour gives us access to the Chambers and historic documents like Magna Carta. The unique blend of impressive architecture, a stunning art collection and beautiful landscape makes Parliament House one of Australia’s most significant and popular cultural attractions.
Departing Canberra we journey north passing through Yass to Cowra, where we break for lunch at the Cowra Japanese Gardens. After lunch you can enjoy a self-guided tour that will introduce you to the symbolic nature of the gardens. The Cowra Japanese Garden covers 5 hectares – the largest in the southern hemisphere. It was built because of Cowra’s special significance to the Japanese. The unique relationship of Cowra and Japan originated on a cold night in August 1944, when more than a thousand Japanese prisoners of war broke out of the local prison camp. Departing Cowra, pass through Bathurst and take an exhilarating lap of Mount Panorama. We continue our journey on to the Blue Mountains, where we ride the heritage Zig Zag Railway before checking-in:
Fairmont Resort, Leura
This morning, we depart the Blue Mountains for Pokolbin stopping for lunch at The Cellar Restaurant which offers rustic Mediterranean inspired cuisine in an elegant yet relaxed surrounding. After lunch, we head to the Hunter Valley, arriving at the magnificent Hunter Valley Gardens for a guided train tour and commentary through parts of the 25 hectares of International Garden.
1 Night Stay: Mercure Resort Hunter Valley Gardens, Hunter Valley
Leaving the resort after breakfast we travel through the Hunter wine region to the Darley Thoroughbred Stud near Denman, where we spend time with a local guide, Craig Benjamin, who has exclusive rights to conduct tours of some of the most prestigious racing studs in the area. Enjoy an insider’s tour of the thoroughbred racing industry and enjoy a very interesting introduction to the equine industry. During spring the mares start giving birth to the foals and it truly is a sight to be seen. We make our way to Scone, breaking for lunch before travelling to Tamworth, visiting the Big Golden Guitar. Our afternoon takes us through to Armidale.
1 Night Stay: Cotswold Gardens, Armidale
Discover the Celtic heritage of Glen Innes, visiting the Standing Stones, a famous national monument to Australia’s Celtic pioneers, and recognised by the Celtic Council of Australia as the national gathering point for Celtic descendants and clans. Next we cross the border back into Queensland and make our way past the grape growing districts of Ballandean, breaking for lunch at the Queensland College of Wine Tourism, experiencing the Medley of Mains luncheon, matching food with wine. Return to the Brisbane CBD at approximately 4:30pm.
TOUR OVERVIEW & INCLUSIONS
PRE & POST TOUR EXTENDER OPTION
2 additional days (TOTAL 12 DAY TOUR)
Passengers must be able to:
Fun Over Fifty has Respecting Our Culture (ROC) certification and are committed to operating in ways that respect and reinforce Indigenous cultural heritage and the living cultures of Indigenous communities. We are committed to protecting cultural authenticity and integrity, developing sound business practices, environmental protection and acknowledging Indigenous peoples spiritual connection to the land and water.
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Fun Over Fifty’s Ecotourism certification assures our guests that our products are backed by a strong, well-managed commitment to sustainable practices. Our nature-based tourism experiences focus on leaving minimal impact on the environment and offering interesting ways to learn about the environment whilst using resources wisely, contributing to conserving the environment and helping local communities.
As an Advanced Ecotourism accredited tour operator, Fun Over Fifty’s innovative ecotourism products operate with minimal impact on the environment. We provide opportunities to learn about the environment and are committed to achieving best practice, whilst using resources wisely, contributing to conserving the environment and helping local communities.
Fun Over Fifty has ATAS accreditation and has met strict criteria in order to become nationally accredited. This accreditation means we are the best in the industry; credible, well trained and a professional business. We are required to conduct business in compliance with Australian Consumer Law and in accordance with ATAS Charter and Code of Conduct.