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Australia/New Zealand for Beginners


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Hello!

Australia and New Zealand have always been my ultimate bucket list destination. Hubby has finally agreed we can go in 2022 for our 10 year anniversary. My brain has officially exploded!

I have so many questions! 
When is better to go February or May? And why don't they offer an April option? (At least Carnival doesn't)

For a first timer - should we do Australia or New Zealand or even New Guinea? 
We would be flying from Michigan, and cruising with Carnival.

Looking for any and all advice I can get! We have cruise number 5 this December, so this will be our 6th cruise. 
 

Thanks so much in advance! 

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Australia -NZ-PNG is a vast area don’t try to do to much.

A good itinerary is to fly to Auckland then fly to queenstown NZ for a couple of days.

NZ is best done by land .
Then you  can fly to Sydney and do your carnival cruise ,then fly home.

Have a look at Air New Zealand.

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There are many things to consider -

How long are you intending to be down under? 

What are your interests - sight seeing, cultural, shopping, snorkelling, walking, swimming?

Hot/cooler weather? February will be hot right through Australia and cyclone season in the north of the country. March/April can be a bit cooler, particularly April and the end of the cyclone season. May is perfect for visiting the northern parts of the country but gerring colder in the south, heading into winter. New Zealand doesn't have the extreme of hot weather Australia does so February is probably fine to visit there. May it will be coming into winter. The North Island will not be as cold as the South Island.

 

The main cruise season in Australia/NZ is October through to April. May cruises will be only in northern Australia and the Pacific Islands. Cruises to NZ will finish in early April. Carnival do only a few cruises to NZ.

 

Good luck with your planning. Any questions, please ask.

 

Leigh

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14 hours ago, mrsfoose said:

Australia and New Zealand have always been my ultimate bucket list destination.

 

For a cruise vacation, I would suggest flying into Sydney. Several days in Sydney, then catch a cruise from there to Auckland. Then a week or so touring the North Island by car, and then a return cruise from Auckland that covers some combination of Vanuatu, New Caledonia, Tonga, and Fiji. Return to Auckland and fly home. Best time of year for NZ is February/March. Celebrity do a nice cruise from Auckland that time of year. By April NZ is getting cooler and the seas start getting much rougher. NZ has a short summer compared to Australia.

 

The reverse of that would be to fly into Auckland for several days and catch a cruise to Sydney. Then a return cruise from Sydney to Cairns for the Great Barrier Reef. Alternatively a return cruise from Sydney (or Brisbane) to PNG. Fly back from Sydney.

Edited by SinbadThePorter
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I'd start in NZ in late February or March. The weather is usually best then. If possible do some inland travel in NZ - fly to Christchurch then drive to Queenstown via Mt Cook. If your cruise doesn't include the Bay of Islands you might also want to go up there for a few days.

 

Then cruise to Australia, try to get a cruise that is at least 12 days and that visits Tasmania as well. I realize you stated a preference for Carnival but it would be worth checking other cruise lines to see which have the best itineraries.

 

By the time you arrive in Australia the worst of the summer heat will be over. You might choose to do some air/land travel, or a cruise to the South Pacific or PNG.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Really depends n time, budget and interests, but if it’s a quick fly in cruise fly out, I would seriously suggest,

 

Fly to Sydney

a few days looking around 

one way cruise to Auckland 

few days looking around fly home

or in reverse 

 

There are also some circumnavigation of Aus and NZ cruises that take 35 days or there about.

 

BUT REMEMBER AUSTRALIA IS PRETTY MUCH THE SIZE OF MAINLAND USA

E75E96F2-BCCA-4FCF-8B25-9AFB185BC684.jpeg

Edited by GUT2407
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  • 2 weeks later...
  • 2 weeks later...
On 6/28/2020 at 7:59 AM, GUT2407 said:

 

BUT REMEMBER AUSTRALIA IS PRETTY MUCH THE SIZE OF MAINLAND USA

And only a population of 25 million spread across that (though almost all within 50 miles of the coast). For perspective, I tell people I live in Perth, which is basically San Diego in terms of location and climate, and the nearest big city, Adelaide, is where Houston would be in terms of distance. Not much in between. A big lotta bush and sky.

While Perth/Fremantle is a nice place to visit, it is 3-5 days cruise from the next destination of size. Not many people get over this side. My advice would be to concentrate on east coast Australia and NZ. Also, what the others said. Princess and Celebrity are fairly big down here, while Carnival is not.

Edited by BulldustHHH
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4 minutes ago, BulldustHHH said:

And only a population of 25 million spread across that (though almost all within 50 miles of the coast). For perspective, I tell people I live in Perth, which is basically San Diego in terms of location and climate, and the nearest big city, Adelaide, is where Houston would be in terms of distance. Not much in between. A big lotta bush and sky.

and a lot of beautiful coastline, wine regions, extraordinary rock formations and in the right season, a lot of wildflowers. 🙂

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On 6/28/2020 at 6:48 PM, Chiliburn said:

I’ll second guts suggestion and just add there’s a lot of wide open space in oz

if you just have time to fly in and out of Sydney, don't pretend you have really seen Oz.  Here is my current favourite video of what it is really like (but there are many more because like the US it is a huge and diverse country) https://www.weeklytimesnow.com.au/news/victoria/aussie-farmer-uses-tik-tok-fame-to-help-bridge-the-ruralcity-divide/news-story/3431d5486cf4cd401ccbcab0e48a5ebe

 

Edited by lucymorgan
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On 6/27/2020 at 5:59 PM, GUT2407 said:

Really depends n time, budget and interests, but if it’s a quick fly in cruise fly out, I would seriously suggest,

 

Fly to Sydney

a few days looking around 

one way cruise to Auckland 

few days looking around fly home

or in reverse 

 

There are also some circumnavigation of Aus and NZ cruises that take 35 days or there about.

 

BUT REMEMBER AUSTRALIA IS PRETTY MUCH THE SIZE OF MAINLAND USA

E75E96F2-BCCA-4FCF-8B25-9AFB185BC684.jpeg

As a Canadian I find your map gives me a better idea of the the distances and relative positions.

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10 hours ago, squadron said:

As a Canadian I find your map gives me a better idea of the the distances and relative positions.

There are a lot of similarities with Canada. Canadians tend to live near the USA border, we live near the coast. Both mineral-rich and sparsely populated with extreme climates in large regions. Both have native peoples which are a small minority of the population. Westminster political system, Queen as head of state, part of the Commonwealth. 

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18 hours ago, lucymorgan said:

lot of beautiful coastline

There are ridiculously beautiful beaches in every state in the country (though some are a tad dangerous, because of bitey and stingy things in or out of the water). On WA's south coast there are gorgeous beaches, especially around Esperance, but it is a rare cruise which stops there. The sand is so white it is blinding (Image search link). Sometimes a roo will join you on the beach. If you see another person you can always move to the next beach to get one to yourself.

 

 

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15 hours ago, BulldustHHH said:

There are ridiculously beautiful beaches in every state in the country (though some are a tad dangerous, because of bitey and stingy things in or out of the water). On WA's south coast there are gorgeous beaches, especially around Esperance, but it is a rare cruise which stops there. The sand is so white it is blinding (Image search link). Sometimes a roo will join you on the beach. If you see another person you can always move to the next beach to get one to yourself.

 

 

I think a lot more Aussies will be doing a lap around the country - joining the Grey Nomads 🙂.  https://www.abc.net.au/news/2018-12-10/how-the-grey-nomad-lifestyle-may-change/10599340#:~:text=Grey nomad is a term,semi-arid and coastal Australia.  (This article was written before Covid19.)

I don't own a motor home or a caravan but at least I know how to tow a horse float 😀,even back it up!!! 😊 and how to charge the float battery with a solar panel ☀️

Edited by lucymorgan
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On 7/23/2020 at 9:10 AM, squadron said:

As a Canadian I find your map gives me a better idea of the the distances and relative positions.

 

The only confusing thing is that Australia should be flipped to show how climate changes in the Southern hemisphere.  I've seen this graphic done that way – but this way the similar climates of Perth and San Diego are highlighted.

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On 7/25/2020 at 8:57 AM, Host Jazzbeau said:

 

The only confusing thing is that Australia should be flipped to show how climate changes in the Southern hemisphere.  I've seen this graphic done that way – but this way the similar climates of Perth and San Diego are highlighted.

I was actually looking for that one, I know I have it somewhere.

 

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On 7/26/2020 at 5:42 PM, GUT2407 said:

Not the best I have seen but shows size in relation to equator

284E0960-06E7-4DF7-878F-D848CA46FB27.png

 

Thanks.  What I would really like is a superimposition that showed comparable climates.  My understanding of New Zealand is that the South Island [particularly the southern part] is much cooler than the part of the US where it lies here.  But maybe there is no perfect climate map for these two areas.

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49 minutes ago, Host Jazzbeau said:

 

Thanks.  What I would really like is a superimposition that showed comparable climates.  My understanding of New Zealand is that the South Island [particularly the southern part] is much cooler than the part of the US where it lies here.  But maybe there is no perfect climate map for these two areas.

I don't think you can really compare the weather of the NZ South Island with the states on the map as it much colder in winter in those states in winter and much hotter in summer which is mainly due to their positions - one being an island and subject to the oceans around it and the states being inland and part of a large landmass. 

 

This map may give a better idea of climate in Australia compared to other parts of the world. And also a similar on for NZ.

An analogue map shows how Australia's different climate zones compare to those of cities around the world 

 

Places in the world whose climates match with New Zealand. More similar climate maps >>

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Australia is huge. We have had three land trips and one 21 day Oz/NZ cruise.  We enjoyed both but I have to say we enjoyed our land trips w/ rental car much more.  We typically have flown into to Gold Coast Airport and home through Sydney with a two day stopover in Hawaii.

 

We have traveled up and down the Gold Coast, Cairns, to Sydney and then to Melbourne and the Great Ocean Road.   We did one week driving sidetrip to Tasmania last winter and enjoyed it very much.  Great air fares on Jetstar Australia.

 

Our advice would be to get a guidebook and research the key tourist routes.  Don't try and do it all.  There is still so much for us yet to see.  The last two times we flew in from Thailand and Malaysia as part of a two month winter trip.  Feb-March timeframe.  Weather was always good.  We want to go back and do a car trip in NZ.  One highlight that we had on the cruise was spending a day in Milford Sound.  The weather was the scenery was spectacular.   We had a retired park ranger on board who gave us a running commentary for the entire day.   Last winter we spent five days in Sydney.  Prior to that we had only done 2-3 day visits.  It was really nice to buy a transit pass and spend time on the ferry system visiting various areas.

 

As you can probably tell we like Australia and Australians in particular.  If we were ever to emigrate from Canada Australia would be at the top of our list.   We would actually like to spend six months in the area.  Rent condos for one month stays in various locals plus a few months in NZ.  Don't know if we will ever do that though.  We have not been in the middle either,,,just along the vast coastline.

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I have a cruise booked from Auckland to Sydney in March 2022. Don't think cruises will be up and running in 2021.  I am flying into Auckland about 4 days before the cruise and am interested in day trips from Auckland.  Any suggestions?

Oh, I just saw this is a really old thread, haha! 

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