Southern Wines and Wildlife
From the natural, rugged beauty of Kangaroo Island to the vine-clad hills of the Barossa Valley, South Australia is yours to discover on this wine and wildlife adventure. Travelling from Brisbane on the Great Southern, winding down the coast through Coffs Harbour and the Hunter Valley, with a city stop in Melbourne, you’ll roll into Adelaide primed for further epicurean delights to follow. Local produce, refreshing wines and spectacular scenery are the highlights of this spectacular journey.
Southern Wines and Wildlife
Day 1-3 : UK - Brisbane
On Arrival in Brisbane make your way to your downtown hotel for a three night stay.
The state capital of Queensland and Australia’s third largest city, Brisbane is renowned for its culture, balmy climate and cosmopolitan atmosphere. The city is set along the banks of the Brisbane River with entertainments in abundance, a cruise along this winding urban channel is a must for all visitors. Cool off in Australia’s only city based man-made beach at Streets Beach in Brisbane’s inner-city suburb of South Bank. Looming over the city is Mt Coot-tha, home to the Botanic Gardens and the ideal vantage point to admire the breath-taking views or perhaps catch the perfect sunset over this amiable city.
Day 4 : Brisbane City Tour
Your morning tour provides an overview of the Brisbane city centre and surrounding suburbs. Hear the history and see why people love to call Brisbane home. See the River City with a relaxing cruise throughout the city centre to beautiful Southbank Parklands, with its man-made beach and cultural precinct. Visit Southbank Parklands and explore the many attractions including the State Art Gallery, Museum and Cultural Centre.
Day 5 : Brisbane
A free day to explore Brisbane on your own.
Day 6 : Board the Great Southern in Brisbane
Today you’ll set off from Brisbane on your epic adventure covering Australia’s south-east. Settle into your cabin and prepare for your first meal on train before arriving at Coffs Harbour for a spectacular beachside dining experience in the evening. (L, D)
OVERNIGHT: 3 nights Great Southern
Day 7 : Great Southern, Hunter Region
After your first night on the train, wake up to a sumptuous breakfast that will set you up for a day of exploring. Choose from wine tasting in the Hunter Valley, exploring Port Stephens by sea or by land, or perhaps opt for a walking tour of Newcastle, discovering its history, vibrancy and stunning coastal views. (B, L, D)
Day 8 : Great Southern, Melbourne or Regional Victoria
After enjoying a delicious breakfast on board and a relaxing start to the day travelling through Victoria's high country, you'll have a choice of Off Train Experiences. Discover regional Victoria or visit cosmopolitan Melbourne. There are plenty of options to choose from. See the city from high above at Melbourne Skydeck, take a tour of the Melbourne Cricket Ground or Old Melbourne Gaol, enjoy free time to explore the city yourself or escape the city entirely. (B, L, D)
Day 9 : Great Southern, Adelaide
Upon arrival into Adelaide, you will be transferred to your hotel. The day is yours to explore the city. Home to over 900 restaurants, pubs and cafes, and a lively food and wine scene, there’s much to discover in South Australia’s leafy capital. (B)
Day 10 : Barossa Valley
Today your boutique wine and food touring continues with a visit to the historic Northern Barossa, with its 80 cellar doors. Enjoy running commentary from your driver as you make your way towards the fabulous Barossa Valley region and prepare to visit one of the oldest vineyards in the world, where Shiraz vines were planted in 1843. Throughout the day, you will be guided through some of the best wines South Australia has to offer. Whether you prefer red or white, there will be something to tantalise and delight, with tastings at three wineries and a delicious lunch, with an accompanying glass of wine. (B, L)
Day 11 : Penfolds Magill Estate
As far as gourmet experiences go, you are about to indulge in one of Australia’s best. The legendary Penfolds Magill Estate, where some of the world’s great wines are produced, is your venue for an epicurean adventure you’ll never forget. Make your way from the hotel to Penfolds Magill Estate by your own arrangements, ready to enjoy tastings, including Grange, in the Estate’s private rooms, before heading to the Magill Estate Cellar Door for a sumptuous lunch. (B, L)
Day 12 : Adelaide
Explore more of Adelaide at your leisure. If you’d like to get to the source of that gourmet experience by visiting another wine-growing region, McLaren Vale is the perfect option. (B)
Day 13 : Adelaide to Kangaroo Island
Please note: the touring content of days 13&14 may be interchanged.
Depart from Adelaide Airport for your flight to magical Kangaroo Island, where you will be met by your guide. Then, begin your two days on the island enjoying the ‘Island Life’ tour. Island Life provides a taste of the way of life in this bucolic spot, where things take time, drivers’ wave as they go by and passers-by stop for a chat. Have a cuppa with some home-made treats before taking a walk down a country track through towering Eucalyptus trees, where koalas snooze overhead or chew languidly on leaves. Listen for the sounds of the bush – brightly coloured honeyeaters and brilliant parrots, cicadas or perhaps just the sound of silence. You’ll travel through the island’s most productive countryside to the north coast and walk through the bush with your guide, learning what makes that noise and whose tracks those are. Watch for small wallabies, a kangaroo found only on Kangaroo Island, and a variety of other birds, plants and animals. Lunch is at a private bush camp, where you’ll enjoy a delicious meal featuring King George Whiting – a local sea fish, fresh salads and fine South Australian wines. At Seal Bay Conservation Park, take a private tour with your guide among Australian sea lions on a beautiful sandy beach. Watch pups nursing or playing in the surf and old bulls bearing the scars of territorial disputes and learn about their unique breeding biology. After a day of touring, you will return to your accommodation, with dinner included at your hotel, the Mercure Kangaroo Island Lodge (B, L, D)
Day 14 : Kangaroo Island
Begin the day travelling through some of the regenerating landscapes of Kangaroo Island. Learn about fire ecology and how nature deals with this natural hazard. Some of the native flora species only flower following fire. Travel into Flinders Chase National Park and explore the massive shapes of Remarkable Rocks, a natural sculpture perched impossibly on top of a granite dome plunging into the ocean. Then, you’ll break for an elegant picnic lunch in the bush, or if weather permits, on a spectacular clifftop. Evidence of the power of the Southern Ocean swell continues at Admirals Arch, a coastal grotto that provides a haul out for a large colony of Long-nosed Fur Seals, which swim effortlessly through the crashing waves. After your last day of touring, you will return to your accommodation, with dinner included at your hotel. (B, L, D)
Day 15 : Kangaroo Island - Adelaide
This morning, you’ll be transferred to the airport for your return flight to Adelaide. Arriving in Adelaide, you will be transferred to your city accommodation to leave your bags and spend the remainder of the day at your leisure. The evening is free to explore some of Adelaide’s many dining and entertainment precincts. (B)
Day 16-17 : Adelaide - UK
After breakfast, check out of your accommodation, bringing your epicurean adventure to an end and make your way to the airport in time for your homeward flight (B)