See the diverse ecosystems of Uluru, the Northern Territory and Sydney. Arrive into Uluru (Ayers Rock) at the center of Australia; the sheer size of Uluru/Ayers Rock along with the strong sense of spirituality and culture found here, means a visit to Uluru is an encounter with the very heart of the Australia. Following Uluru, head north to the top end city of Darwin. Embark on an incredible indigenous journey with an aboriginal guide. Continue onto Sydney and explore this iconic Australian city.
- Round trip International airfare from Los Angeles in Economy class
- Domestic Australia airfare in Economy class
- 2 Nights at the Desert Gardens Hotel, Standard Room, Twin Share
- Transfers from/to the Ayers Rock airport to/from the Desert Gardens Hotel
- Sunrise Uluru Tour including breakfast
- Sunset Kata Tjuta Tour
- Field of Light Pass
- 2 Nights at the Novotel Darwin, Standard Room, Twin Share
- 3 Day/2 night Dragonly Dreaming Top End 4WD Safari
- 2 Nights at the Vibe, Sydney
- Captain Cook Harbor Story Cruise
- Transfers Darwin and Sydney airports to/from accommodation
- All airport taxes & fuel surcharges to package inclusions
Day 1 - Depart US
What makes Australia truly special is not just the accents, iconic destinations and the wildlife, but the warmth of its people. You’ll experience this warmth with Virgin Australia when you fly direct from LA to Sydney. Considering upgrading your flight? Consider premium economy from $700 per person additional each way or a life flat bed in business class from $2,000 each way for travel Monday - Thursday
Day 2 - Cross International Dateline
Day 3 - Arrive into Australia, Kata Tjuta afternoon tour
On arrival into Ayers Rock you will be met by your driver for a shared transfer to the Resort.
Ayers Rock/Uluru is in the center of Australia. The sheer size of Uluru/Ayers Rock as well as the strong sense of spirituality and culture you find here, means a visit here is an encounter within the very heart of Australia. Uluru is sacred to the people of the area and on this vacation you'll have the chance to explore with an Aboriginal guide, giving you a firsthand account of the stories, folklore and importance of this sacred place.
ACCOMMODATION - Spend 2 nights at Voyages Desert Gardens Hotel, a superior 4 star hotel at Voyages Ayers Rock Resort. Magnificent ghost gums and flowering native shrubs are the setting for this hotel. Voyages Desert Gardens Hotel is centrally located to all resort and touring facilities and offers a range of accommodation, from shaded poolside rooms to deluxe rooms overlooking the desert. You can relax in the comfort of your own private balcony or courtyard, or unwind in the hotel's pool, sipping cocktails from the Bunya bar. It's only a short stroll to the Resorts' numerous lookouts, where you can view what is arguably Australia's best sunset, with the spectacular play of colours across the face of Uluru and the surrounding desert. Once the sun has set, dine at Arnguli Grill and savour an a la carte flame grilled menu.
This afternoon sit back and relax as you travel into the amazing National Park while your Driver Guide shares insights into the natural and cultural history of this fascinating region. Kata Tjuta simply translated means ‘heads many’ and given the 36 steep-sided domes of Kata Tjuta, it is aptly named. This incredible formation of rock domes extends six kilometres into the ground and is the remains of erosion that began more than 500 million years ago. The area is sacred under Anangu men’s law and under this law, details of many stories of Kata Tjuta are not known except to initiated men. While delighting in chilled Australian wines and canaps, you can enjoy the wonder of a Kata Tjuta sunset. Each passing minute brings something new as the domes continue to change colour with the setting sun.
Day 4 - Sunrise Uluru and Field of Light
As you travel towards Uluru, its vast shape rises from the sand dunes in the early dawn light highlighting its presence in this country. Your guide will take you to a special location to watch the sun rise over this amazing monolith. You will learn the Creation stories of Liru (poisonous snake) and Kuniya (python) and hear about the Mala people. After breakfast you will visit Mutijulu Waterhole and then drive around the base of the Uluru before returning to the resort.
Admission to limited time "Field of Light" art installation included. Delve into the experiential artwork in a number of different ways with the Field of Light Pass which includes return coach transfers to the remote site with ample time to experience the installation. Consider additional "Field of Light" tour options to enhance your experience (additional cost applies):
- Night at Field of Light
A Night at Field of Light' experience begins with a convenient hotel pick-up and transfer to the remote desert location with majestic views of Uluru. With Uluru as the backdrop, guests enjoy canaps and chilled sparkling wine to the sounds of a didgeridoo as the sun slowly sets. As darkness gradually falls and the coloured lights of the 50,000 glass spheres come to life guests enjoy local Indigenous performance, welcoming them to this unique country, before being invited to join their fellow travellers at their dinner table for a special three-course bush tucker inspired buffet menu. A knowledgeable guide will provide insights and background to the monumental installation and guests are invited to immerse themselves and walk through Field of Light. After dinner guests are welcomed back at the dune viewing area to enjoy a sweet treat, hot chocolate or port whilst viewing the illuminated installation in the darkness.
- Night at Field of Light by Camel
A Night at Field of Light' experience begins with a convenient hotel pick-up and transfer to the remote desert location with majestic views of Uluru. With Uluru as the backdrop, guests enjoy canaps and chilled sparkling wine to the sounds of a didgeridoo as the sun slowly sets. As darkness gradually falls and the coloured lights of the 50,000 glass spheres come to life guests enjoy local Indigenous performance, welcoming them to this unique country, before being invited to join their fellow travellers at their dinner table for a special three-course bush tucker inspired buffet menu. A knowledgeable guide will provide insights and background to the monumental installation and guests are invited to immerse themselves and walk through Field of Light. After dinner guests are welcomed back at the dune viewing area to enjoy a sweet treat, hot chocolate or port whilst viewing the illuminated installation in the darkness
- Sound of Silence
Entered into the Australian Tourism Hall of Fame, Sounds of Silence offers the best of the Red Centre distilled into four magical hours. An unforgettable evening, eating beautifully prepared food under the sparkling outback sky. The journey begins on a lone sand dune. A meandering path takes participants to an uninterrupted, 360 degree view of this vast landscape. In front is the fabled Uluru; behind are the domes of Kata Tjuta and, possibly the most spectacular sunset you have ever seen. Here enjoy sparkling wine and a selection of delectable canaps. As the sun sets in a blaze of reds and oranges, and well into the starlit night, feast on a gourmet barbecue buffet of authentic Australian delicacies including barramundi, kangaroo, emu, crocodile, bush salads and classic desserts, complemented by some of Australia's finest wines. Attention then turns to some of the world's best stargazing, as the resident astronomer takes diners on an unforgettable tour of the spectacular southern night sky. As dinner winds down, select from a choice of tea, coffee or port. In winter, guests gather around a campfire to savour a special treat of hot mulled wine.
Day 5 - Uluru To Darwin
Complimentary transfer from the Desert Garden Hotel to the airport. Fly Ayers Rock to Darwin. Make your way to your hotel, as per your own arrangements.
ACCOMMODATION - Novotel Darwin Atrium - conveniently located in the city centre, overlooking Darwin Harbour. This 4-star hotel is a short stroll from the Mitchell Street dining and entertainment precinct and is equally suited for business trips and holidays. Boasting 140 spacious rooms and conferencing facilities, Novotel Darwin Atrium features a magnificent tropical indoor rainforest, complete with cascading vines and palm trees. Try the famous cocktails in the bar or enjoy a delicious meal in the restaurant.
Day 6 - 3 Day/2 night Dragonly Dreaming Top End 4WD Safari (Lunch, Dinner)
You will be collected from your Darwin accommodation at approximately 7.00am for the short journey to Litchfield National Park. Explore the waterfalls, spring-fed streams and rugged sandstone escarpments of Litchfield National Park. Discover intriguing cathedral and magnetic termite mounds and swim, hike and explore Florence and Wangi Falls* and enjoy a picnic lunch.
After lunch we leave the highway behind and hit the dirt travelling along the Marrakai Road before joining the Old Jim Jim Road taking us deep into Kakadu National Park. Travelling past billabongs and traversing water crossings bringing ample opportunity for wildlife spotting. Arrive at our private campsite complete with comfortable permanent tents at Cooinda where we spend the night enjoying dinner and some stargazing.
Day 7 - 3 Day/2 night Dragonly Dreaming Top End 4WD Safari (Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner)
Awake for breakfast this morning before joining an iconic Yellow Waters Cruise. A must do activity within Kakadu National Park, the award winning Yellow Waters cruise is Aboriginal owned and centres around a spectacular billabong system that is home to some remarkable and diverse wildlife. Spotting crocodiles is only one of the many wildlife viewing opportunities on this unique water system.
Departing camp we travel to nearby Nourlangie Rock. Here you can see how local Aboriginal people lived in this area through changing times. Environmental and social changes are reflected in the rock art and in the ground, where archaeologists have uncovered over 20,000 years of Aboriginal occupation.
After lunch visit the Bowali Visitor Centre, a Gun-djeihmi name for the local area and creek on land owned by the Mirarr clan. See the audio-visual presentations and Marrawuddi Gallery showcasing Aboriginal art by artists from within Kakadu and the wider region.
Later this afternoon we arrive at the culturally significant Aboriginal art site of Ubirr, located within the East Alligator region of the park. Here you will view a wide range of ancient Aboriginal art which will be interpreted by your guide. Learn the story of the Rainbow Serpent and climb the Nadab Lookout for panoramic views over the floodplain and beyond into Arnhem Land. After learning about the area, it’s time to pick out a quiet spot to sit while we watch the sun set over the Kakadu escarpment before making the short journey to our private and permanent campsite for the night.
Day 8 - 3 Day/2 night Dragonly Dreaming Top End 4WD Safari (Breakfast, Lunch)
Today the jewels of Kakadu National Park await. Departing early we travel to Twin and Jim Jim Falls. Explore Twin Falls Gorge which is accessed by 4-wheel drive track, a boat shuttle service and a rocky walking track and boardwalk. Once there relax on the sandy banks and admire the falls. There’s more 4-wheel driving as we make our way to Jim Jim Falls where a walk through monsoon forest and over boulders takes us to the waterfall and plunge pool which are surrounded by 150 metre cliffs.
Spend the afternoon taking in the sheer beauty of your spectacular surrounds before we make our way back to Darwin and your accommodation after three magical days of adventure and wildlife, rich in cultural history and natural beauty.
Day 9 - Darwin to Sydney
Make your way to the Darwin airport. Fly Darwin to Sydney. On arrival into Cairns, shuttle transfer from airport to accommodation.
ACCOMMODATION - A unique hotel offering chic accommodation in the heart of Sydney, Vibe Hotel Sydney exudes style. It is perfectly positioned for you to easily discover Sydney's vibrant central business district, Surry Hills, Chinatown, World Square and the downtown entertainment precinct that offers live theater and music year round. Sydney's premier tourist destinations like Darling Harbour and Hyde Park are only a minute's walk away and with public transport at your doorstep, you have access to Sydney's other major attractions.
Day 10 - Sydney
This morning explore Sydney at your leisure
This afternoon discover Sydney’s newest quality sightseeing cruise including refreshments and an entertaining, personalized commentary of the people, places and events that have made Sydney Harbor the most beautiful and exciting in the harbor world.
Day 11 - Depart for US
Transfer to Sydney Airport and your return flight home to the US.
Additional departure gateways & pricing
- Add on airfares available from most major airports - Add $190 from San Francisco, Add $250 from Dallas, Seattle, Add $300 from NYC, Chicago, Houston, Denver, Minneapolis, Add $380 from Boston, Miami, Add $450 from Washington DC, Atlanta - ask an Aspire consultant for a quote from your local airport.
* Based on Monday through Thursday travel - ask an Aspire consultant for add-ons for travel Friday through Sunday
Optional Activities, Extensions or Add-Ons & pricing:
- Upgrade to premium economy from $700 per person each way*
- Upgrade to business class from $2,000 per person each way*
- Can take the upgrade one way or round trip and combine premium/business classes on same ticket
* Based on Monday through Thursday travel - ask an Aspire consultant for the upgrade fee for travel Friday through Sunday
On Board Virgin Australia
Virgin Australia launched over a decade ago and instantly changed the way people fly. Today, Virgin Australia represents a new level of style, sophistication and professionalism. With constant innovation at the heart of everything they do, superior products and award-winning service set them apart and lets you enjoy a world-class experience on every flight.
Package from pricing is based on double occupancy (2 people sharing a room) for travel Sunday - Wednesday 08 April – 30 November 2017 for purchase by 15 May 2017; $60 supplement applies each way for travel on Thursday to Saturdays. Ask an Aspire consultant for pricing for other travel dates. Add-on fares are available from other cities. Certain blackout dates apply on the accommodation and tour value add offers - check with your Aspire consultant. Seats are limited and may not be available on every flight. Hotels are subject to availability. All prices reflect a discount for purchases made by cash/wire transfer/check, please see terms and conditions for credit card payments. There are no discounts for payment made by credit cards. Cancellation penalties and other restrictions apply. A passport with extended validity past your travel dates and an Electronic Travel Authority (ETA) is required to enter Australia; Aspire Down Under can issue your ETA for a processing fee of $25 per person. A copy of the picture page of your passport and payment for your ETA is required at the time of booking.