Day 1. Flights to Melbourne (D)
Flights arrive in Melbourne Airport where we board our ‘Gold Class’ coach to make our way to the hub of the city and check-in for two nights. 2 Night Stay: Sofitel Melbourne on Collins, Melbourne
Day 2. Melbourne (B,L,D)
Travelling via the Dandenong Ranges, we arrive at Belgrave to board the Puffing Billy. Enjoy first-class service on a three-hour steam train journey, savouring a delicious lunch in heritage dining carriages. We cross the historic Monbulk Creek Trestle Bridge and journey through temperate rainforest, dense fern foliage and wide-open fields. We arrive at Lakeside Station where we have time to disembark the train and explore the park which is home to abundant birdlife. We then re-board for our return journey finishing off with dessert before returning to the CBD.
Day 3. Great Ocean Road (B,L,D)
Departing Melbourne we travel the Great Ocean Road via Torquay, Anglesea and Lorne, breaking for lunch at Apollo Bay. We move on to the Twelve Apostles for a thrilling helicopter scenic flight over London Bridge, sandstone cliffs and Bay of Islands. Other sights include Peterborough, The Grotto and the Bay of Martyrs. We finish our day at Warrnambool. 1 Night Stay: Deep Blue Hotel & Hot Springs, Warrnambool
Day 4. Warrnambool to Creswick (B,L,D)
A later start today leaving Warrnambool we travel to Port Fairy where we collect a local guide to show us this quaint fishing village steeped in the history of whalers and seal hunters. We then make our way into the Grampians, breaking here for lunch before continuing on to Ararat to visit Gum San Chinese Heritage Centre, housing a fascinating selection of interactive, audio-visual and static displays offering heritage and culture. We end our day checking-in to our resort at Creswick. 2 Night Stay: RACV Goldfields Resort, Creswick
Day 5. Ballarat, Sovereign Hill, Creswick (B,D)
Today we explore Ballarat and learn how this sleepy settlement transformed into a bustling boomtown within a matter of months after the discovery of gold nearby in 1851. We visit Sovereign Hill, where history comes to life as you pan for gold, meet characters in period costume and ride an old-fashioned stagecoach. Wander through the dusty streets past Victorian homes and stop in at old-fashioned shops like the apothecary, sweet shop or candle works and purchase unique souvenirs. **Lunch is at own expense today.
Day 6. Creswick to Bendigo (B,L,D)
This morning we visit Creswick Woollen Mills to meet sheep, cashmere goats and alpacas; and learn about the journey of natural fibre from the source to our shops. We continue on via Hepburn Springs to Bendigo and the Central Deborah Gold Mine. Walk in the footsteps of miners who discovered almost one tonne of the world’s most precious metal. Next, we board the vintage ‘talking tram’ to be delighted by the grand architecture of Bendigo as the tram tells the story. 1 Night Stay: Quality Hotel Lakeside, Bendigo
Day 7. Wangaratta (B,L,D)
This morning we head to Echuca where our local guide takes us back in time and explains the history of this port town when hundreds of steamers raced along the mighty Murray, opening up large areas in New South Wales, Victoria and South Australia. We then board the PS Pride of the Murray, a lovingly maintained paddleboat that will take us meandering between the red gum lined banks of the Murray River whilst we enjoy lunch on board. Then we travel through to Shepparton to Wangaratta. 1 Night Stay: Quality Hotel, Wangaratta
Day 8. Wangaratta to Albury (B,L,D)
This morning we follow the Silo Art Trail through Tungamah, Devenish and Goorambat. Each oversize artwork tells a different story and was completed by a different artist. We continue on to Ned Kelly country arriving at Glenrowan in time for a cuppa at the Homestead at Kate Kelly’s Tea House, followed by a visit to the Ned Kelly Museum. Next we witness ‘Ned Kelly’s Last Stand’, a light and sound show that is a re-enactment of the events that led up to the capture and hanging of Ned Kelly. Departing Glenrowan, we make our way to Albury. 1 Night Stay: Best Western Plus Hovell Tree Inn, Albury
Day 9. Albury to Lakes Entrance (B,MT,L,D)
Travelling via Bright we ascend to the top of Mt Hotham on the Great Dividing Range. Take in the spectacular view as travel through the Omeo Valley along the Great Alpine Road. Our afternoon takes us via Swifts Creek finishing our day at Lakes Entrance mid afternoon. Enjoy free time on the pretty esplanade and shopping precinct. 1 Night Stay: Bellevue on the Lakes, Lakes Entrance
Day 10. Lakes Entrance to Inverloch (B,L,D)
Today we leisurely make our way to Foster breaking at country towns along the way. A must see is the murals that cover the walls and ceilings of St Mary’s church in Bairnsdale and discover the street art at Yarrum. Our afternoon takes us via Port Albert before we finish our day checking in at Inverloch. 2 Night Stay: RACV Inverloch Resort,Inverloch
Day 11. Wilsons Promontory National Park (B,L,D)
Discover rugged wilderness of Wilsons Promontory National Park as we make our way to Tidal River. Here we board our amphibious boat and discover the rugged coast exploring prehistoric boulders and the iconic granite monolith that is Skull Rock. Tonight, enjoy farewell drinks and dinner.
Day 12. Flights Home (B,L)
We make our way back to Docklands Melbourne to experience ArtVo. Step into a world of optical illusions, the larger than life murals allow you to come face to face with wild animals, scale rocky crevasses and surf the ultimate pipelines. From here we make our way to the airport for our respective flights home.
B = Full Breakfast; MT = M/Tea; L = Lunch; AT = A/Tea; D = Two Course Dinner
dates & pricing
- EARLY BIRD DEAL!
- Non-refundable deposit of $800pp required to secure your reservation.
- N.B. This package is subject to a fuel levy without notice for coach and air components.
- Price includes airfares and taxes ex Brisbane, Sydney or Adelaide at time of printing. Flights are also available from Perth and may incur an additional fee.
- Flights are arranged to suit the tour as a group in advance, therefore we cannot guarantee direct flights or book individual preferences.
- FITNESS LEVEL – A RATING OF 3 (ACTIVE/MODERATE) FITNESS LEVEL – Passengers must be able to:-
• Participate in walking tours without having to stop or sit down to rest for up to 20 minutes
• Walk up an incline equal to a flight of stairs, without stopping
• Stand for 30 minutes, without needing to sit down
• Walk over uneven ground, tackle cobbled creek crossings & walk through soft sand
• Get on and off transportation multiple times unaided
• Manage your own luggage