DAY 1 – BRISBANE & CAIRNS
Enjoy the sights of Brisbane as you make your way to one of the city’s favourite attractions the Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary. Here, you’ll have the opportunity to get close to the Koala’s and view the Australian native wildlife including kangaroos, wombats and echidnas that call this sanctuary home. You’ll have some free time to explore the sanctuary before transferring to the airport for your two hour flight to Cairns. A light snack will be served during the flight. Touch-down in Cairns, Northern Queensland and transfer to the Hilton Hotel for check-in and time to refresh before your evening tour. Tonight, journey to Tjapukai, an Aboriginal Cultural Centre where you will experience the powerful spirit of indigenous Australia as you embark on an evening of ancient Tjapukai. Enjoy an engaging lakeside ceremony before a buffet dinner is served.
DAY 2 – GREAT BARRIER REEF
Following breakfast in the hotel, you’ll discover the wonders of The Great Barrier Reef on a full day excursion. A brief 10 minute walk brings you to the quayside where you’ll board a high-speed catamaran. In just 90-minutes, you’ll arrive at a purpose-built offshore reef pontoon on the Great Barrier outer Reef. The Reef is rich with coral, fish, molluscs and visiting sharks, dolphins and turtles.
A presentation by a marine naturalist will prepare you for the exquisitely beautiful underwater world that lies ahead. Take in the underwater views from the pontoon’s viewing chamber or take the semi-submersible or glass-bottom boat tour for matchless panoramas of colourful tropical fish and coral gardens. Inviting aquamarine waters provide a tempting attraction for those wishing to swim with a mask and snorkel. Enjoy a tropical buffet luncheon, served in air-conditioned comfort, then return to the water to swim or snorkel, or just lie back and relax on the sundeck. After spending a relaxing few hours out at the pontoon, re board your catamaran for the 90 minute trip back to the pier. After your exhilarating day on the reef, dinner will be arranged at your hotel for your convenience.
DAY 3 – SYDNEY
In order to maximise your time in Sydney, the earliest available flight has been booked. Due to the early start, you’ll be offered a snack breakfast en-route to the airport for your (low-cost airline) flight to Sydney. On arrival into this vibrant coastal city, you’ll be met by a local guide and taken on a panoramic tour; an excellent way to discover the highlights of Sydney from the comfort of a coach. Travel back in time to Sydney’s oldest village, The Rocks. This historic enclave sits in the shadow of the dazzling Harbour Bridge. As you make your way through central Sydney pass by St Mary's Cathedral, Parliament House, and the Sydney Tower before continuing through the cosmopolitan Kings Cross, Rushcutters Bay, Double Bay and Watson’s Bay before stopping at the world famous Bondi Beach. Here, you’ll have an hour’s free time to soak up the atmosphere of this legendary beach-side resort, browse for souvenirs or stop for a quick snack lunch (luncheon not included). Return to the city via Paddington, with its narrow streets whose houses are lined with picturesque verandas’ framed by wrought-iron railings. You’ll return to Queen Victoria mid afternoon, leaving you with some time to explore Sydney independently in the late afternoon if you wish.
You and all those in your party should be aware that, in undertaking activity excursions, you will be involved in a degree of physical exertion and/or activity such as hiking, biking, snorkelling, kayaking, diving etc. By booking the excursion you confirm that you and all those in your party are in good physical and mental condition, with no history of conditions such as seizures, dizziness, fainting, heart condition, respiratory problems or back/neck problems (by way of example only). You should also ensure that no one in your party is taking medicine that carries a warning about impairment of physical or mental abilities. If you are pregnant this type of excursion may not be appropriate for you. It is your responsibility to ensure that you are fit and well enough to take part in the activities booked and you are reminded to take care for your own safety. Because of the risks associated with activity excursions, you may be asked by the excursion provider to sign a document which may affect or limit the excursion provider’s liability. Comfortable flat walking shoes are recommended.
BEACH/WATER RELATED EXCURSIONS
For any excursion involving water, guests are reminded to exercise particular care. Alcohol and eating a full meal should be avoided before swimming. If buoyancy aids are provided for an activity they must be worn at all times. You should bear in mind that the sea is unpredictable. Lifeguards are unlikely to be present and there may not be a flag system to indicate whether or not it is safe to go in the water. In addition, beach activities may not be supervised or accompanied and so you should take care to satisfy yourself as to the safety of the beach and/or the sea at the time of your excursion.
Please exercise caution when entering the sea as the seabed and aquatic environment is capable of springing surprises and we have not inspected the beach or seabed for its safety. Children must be supervised by you at all times near water. All activities on the beach, water and in the sea are undertaken at your own risk. You’ll need to take swimwear, a towel, sunscreen and flat shoes that can be worn in the water.
All guests wishing to participate in a certified dive tour must hold a PADI open water scuba certification or BSAC Ocean Diver certification. Unfortunately, we are unable to accommodate divers with either a PADI Junior Open Water or a PADI Scuba Dive rating due to the depth limitations imposed by these qualifications. In line with the recommendations by the sports-diving industry, we strongly recommend that divers undertake a refresher course if they have not been diving within the last six months. You must be aged 15 or over, carry your dive certification card with you and we recommend that you carry your diving log or proof that you’ve recently completed a refresher course. If you are a certified diver, but are unable to meet our requirements we recommend taking the Discover Scuba excursion as an alternative.
For Discover Scuba courses you don’t need any scuba experience but you must be 13 or over and be able to swim. You’ll also need to complete a medical/liability consent form before you go - but if you suffer from asthma, diabetes, heart problems or other medical conditions you won’t be able to take part.
Please visit www.padi.com/padi/en/sd/whatsrequired.aspx for more information.
Cunard will arrange for the excursions to be performed by the relevant excursion provider. Cunard does not provide or supply the excursion services. Cunard will exercise reasonable care and skill in the selection of the excursion provider, but will not in any circumstances have a greater liability than the excursion supplier and Cunard shall not be responsible for the negligent acts/omissions of the excursion supplier. Please note that in relation to all excursions Cunard is not responsible or liable for any loss, damage, or injury sustained by you unless such loss, damage or injury arises out of a breach of legal duty of Cunard.
Before booking any activity excursions it is essential that you ensure your travel insurance extends to cover the specified activity. It is your responsibility to obtain adequate insurance.
Bookings for this tour will close on 14th December 2013. There is a strict minimum and maximum participation. Please ensure you book the correct tour code for the accommodation you require (Double = BNE804, Single = BNE805). Prices shown on your record of shore excursions are per person, not per room. Once your booking is confirmed, any cancellation made after bookings close will incur a 100% cancellation fee. This tour departs Brisbane on 3rd March and returns in Sydney on 5th March. Please check your embarkation/disembarkation dates carefully before booking this overland. This excursion is physically demanding. Be prepared for early morning starts and lengthy days. No refunds will be given for any unused portion.
The fare includes: transport by coach, boat and plane, sightseeing and hotel accommodation as stated. Meals include water, tea and coffee. One glass of wine is included with evening meals, additional beverages will be charged to guests own account.
The fare does not include: items of a personal nature such as phone calls, laundry, gratuities, room service, liquor, doctor’s fees and any medication or prescriptions. Guests who require a visa for Australia must be in possession of a valid eVisitor or ETA (Electronic Travel Authority) prior to embarking the ship.
What to pack: Please remember your passport and any medication you may require. Luggage limit is one bag per person with a maximum weight of 20kg. Guests should take swimwear and plenty of protection from the sun. Valuables should be left on board the ship. Please remember to carry a credit card or Australian dollars for any additional purchases.
The Reef: There are approximately 10 steps to negotiate to board the catamaran, the semi-submersible and the viewing chamber. There is a no smoking policy onboard the catamaran and reef pontoon. The tour operates in all weather; those prone to seasickness should take the necessary precautions. Independent suppliers at the pontoon offer watersports such as scuba and guided snorkel tours, these are provided by parties unconnected to Cunard Line and are payable direct. Qualified scuba divers require proof of certification. Before you book this excursion, you must refer to the ‘Activity Excursion’ and ‘Beach/Water Related’ related paragraphs under the ‘Guide to Symbols’.