Australasia features the rugged islands of New Zealand, the diversity of Australia, the jungles of Papua New Guinea and tropical Indonesia (Bali). Normally part of a world cruise itinerary, there are a growing number of ships serving the region. From the Far East you can visit Bali, Darwin and the North End, the Barrier Reef, photogenic Sydney and all the major cities of Australia and NZ.
Australia North and East
Starting or ending in Singapore or Hong Kong, world sector cruises will visit Indonesia (often Bali) and the virgin rainforest of Papua New Guinea before descending to Darwin to explore the wonders of the Kakadu National Park. Travel eastwards and around Cape York to Australia’s west coast to find Cairns and the incredible Great Barrier Reef. Here you can take day and longer cruises within the reef and its islands. Further south is Brisbane and the wonderful beaches of the Sunshine and Gold Coasts. Sydney must be one of the world’s best arrival ports – pass through the Heads into a magnificent harbour and sail towards the famous Harbour Bridge and Opera House.
Trans Tasman cruises between Australia and New Zealand offer the opportunity to circumnavigate both North and South Islands. Cruises to and from New Zealand leave from Sydney or Melbourne in Australia and Auckland in NZ. You can circle New Zealand to visit the Bay of Islands, Tauranga for the Rotorua Thermal Reserve, Wellington, Christchurch and Milford Sound, the undisputed jewel of Fiordland National Park. These cruises will often call at Tasmania for its mountains, forests and wildlife.
It is also possible to cruise from Melbourne across the Great Australian Bight calling at Adelaide, the city of churches, Fremantle for Perth, the capital of Western Australia and up the eastern coast of the continent past great reefs and beaches to Broome and thence Darwin to complete the circumnavigation.
When to Visit?
Most cruises take place in the northern winter (southern summer) when cruise ships take world cruises or are relocated to the region. Temperatures will be warm to hot depending on the latitude. Local cruises of The Barrier Reef are offered year round.