Aboriginal Culture & Australian Highlights
If you want to immerse yourself in the world’s oldest continuous living culture, you’ve come to the right place. From the spiritual heart of Australia to its cities, discover the country’s Aboriginal heritage through activities ranging from climbing bridges to creating paintings. You’ll also get to meet some of the characters who nurture Indigenous culture and keep it alive for future generations.
Your Holiday Package Includes:
- 12 night Aboriginal Culture & Australian Highlights guided tour with AAT Kings, Melbourne to Cairns
- Centrally located premium hotels
- 12 full breakfasts, 2 lunches, 3 dinners with wine, 1 farewell dinner
- Exclusive Sunrise Field of Light art installation experience at Uluru
- 3 UNESCO World Heritage Sites – Uluru Kata Tjuta National Park, Great Barrier Reef, Sydney Opera House
- Select internal flights
- Return airport to hotel transfers
Pricing is per person twin share and based on travel 10-22 October 2024
Solo traveller pricing available. Please speak to one of our travel consultants for more details
Other travel dates available, surcharges apply
Aunty Margret is a Sydney legend, pioneering Indigenous tourism around the city. Discover Aboriginal sites and stories on one of her Dreamtime Southern X tours.
Whether at sunrise or sunset, the beauty of Uluru is mesmerising. Aboriginal creatives at Maruku Arts capture it in their paintings and will show you how to do the same.
Big Esso not only crafts menus using sustainably grown native produce, but also supports Aboriginal growers, makers, bakers and brewers.
Wildlife & Nature
Take a deep dive (literally) into the Aboriginal stories behind the creation of the Great Barrier Reef with Dreamtime Dive & Snorkel from Cairns.
Day 1 / Welcome to Melbourne
Arrive early in Australia’s cultural capital to explore art-filled laneways, galleries and boutiques at your own pace. Melbourne is also Australia’s food capital – we have something special planned for your Welcome Dinner.
Day 2 / Melbourne
Australia’s Aboriginal culture spans oceans, rivers, rainforest, outback and cities, as you’ll discover with Koorie Heritage Trust. From the organisation’s base at Federation Square, explore Melbourne with a First Nation's guide along the banks of the Yarra River, a MAKE TRAVEL MATTER® Experience. It's only a few steps to Big Esso by Mabu Mabu, a MAKE TRAVEL MATTER® Experience, celebrating contemporary Torres Strait Islander culture through cuisine. The menu is an explosion of native Australian bush flavours, from finger lime to quandong, with a drinks list that heroes Indigenous-owned businesses – their art also decorates the walls. More awaits at the Ian Potter Centre (NGV) in Federation Square, which hosts one of Australia's most significant collections of art from First Nations Creatives.
Day 3 / Melbourne Free Time
Take the pulse of Melbourne in your own time. Need touring suggestions? Your Travel Director can assist. You might choose to stay in the heart of the city exploring the Royal Botanic Gardens with an Aboriginal guide. Or for a bird’s-eye view, zip to the Melbourne Eureka Skydeck – it’s the highest of its kind in the Southern Hemisphere. While it’s tempting to linger, a bevy of attractions await on the outskirts of the city, including the Great Ocean Road. Spending a day driving this World Heritage-listed route is a rite of passage, uniting surf, seaside towns and wilderness walks. You might choose to head to the other side of the bay – Phillip Island is a mecca for wildlife, including penguins that waddle from the ocean to their sandy burrows every evening.
Day 4 / Melbourne - Uluru
Uluru-Kata Tjuta is World Heritage-listed for a reason. Explore spiritual landscapes that are sacred to the Anangu people; your guide on the Kuniya walk to Mutitjulu Waterhole will point out rock art and bush foods. The ultimate way to end the day is watching the sinking sun paint the outback all manner of fiery hues – flute of bubbles in hand. This is your backdrop for an exclusive Barbecue dinner.
Day 5 / Uluru
The outback inspires creativity, as you’ll discover meeting Aboriginal artists and sculptors at Maruku Arts, a MAKE TRAVEL MATTER® Experience. Their works capture the drama of Australia, and they’ll show you how to do the same during an art class. Spend the afternoon visiting the Gallery of Central Australia (GOCA), spotlighting ethically sourced Aboriginal art. Or, take to the sky on an optional scenic flight. Back at ground level, wander into Walpa Gorge, then say cheers to another Kata Tjuta sunset with a glass of bubbles.
Day 6 / Uluru - Sydney
50,000 – that’s the number of lights that artist Bruce Munro used to create his alfresco artwork, Field of Light. This blanket of bulbs casts a surreal glow over the Uluru countryside, and is particularly beguiling on a sunrise visit. Tonight, is yours to explore Sydney. We have a little black book of hot restaurants to try if you need tips.
Day 7 / Sydney
Bring your stamina for an action-packed day exploring the Harbour City, including a behind-the-scenes tour of the Opera House. It sits on land belonging to the Eora Nation, as you’ll discover when you meet Aunty Margret of Dreamtime Southern X on a walking tour around the Rocks district. Swap the shore for the water on an expedition to harbour islands with Tribal Warrior Cruises and Tours, showing how Sydney’s Aboriginal culture and colonial history unite.
Day 8 / Sydney Free Time
Go your own way or ask your Travel Director to assist booking tours like the Burrawa Indigenous Climb, which sees you scale the Sydney Harbour Bridge accompanied by an Aboriginal guide. Or spend the day with an AAT Kings guide in the Blue Mountains. You don’t need to go far to have an adventure, as you’ll discover on Dave's Rocks Pub Tour, taking you to some of the city’s most historic drinking establishments. Or take in the harbour in a helicopter, swooping over beaches and bushland. It’s an outlook that inspires creativity, as you might choose to discover on a guided tour of the Art Gallery of NSW.
Day 9 / Sydney Free Time
If you’re looking to continue your First Nations immersion, your Travel Director can organise optional tours including a bush-tucker experience in the Royal Botanic Garden, or an Aboriginal Cultural Tour at Barangaroo. A First Nations guide will also lead you around the Australian Museum’s two Aboriginal exhibitions on a Waranara Tour.
Day 10 / Sydney - Cairns
After your morning flight from Sydney, spend your free afternoon soaking up the steamy climes of Cairns. Explore the vibrant esplanade or opt for an Indigenous-owned cruise by Mandingalbay Tours.
Day 11 / Great Barrier Reef
Dreamtime Dive & Snorkel’s catamaran tours tell the story of the Great Barrier Reef through First Nations' eyes. The company’s Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander sea rangers regale you with 65,000-year-old Dreamtime creation stories, a MAKE TRAVEL MATTER® Experience, while you cruise to Moore Reef; here, slip into warm water to flipper among some of the 1,500 species of fish.
Day 12 / Cairns Free Time
Spend your free day soaking up the sights of Tropical North Queensland, perhaps joining a tour to catch the Skyrail Rainforest Cableway and Kuranda Scenic Railway deep into the rainforest. Or maybe on an Outback Tasting Adventure, uniting distillers, brewers, cheesemongers and farmers. You may opt to discover native bush tucker on a Cape Tribulation, Mossman & Daintree tour, taking you through one of the world’s oldest rainforests. End your wild adventure with a Farewell Dinner at Ochre Restaurant on the Cairns waterfront.
Day 13 / Farewell from Cairns
You’ll not only depart Cairns a more seasoned traveller, but also a more thoughtful one. And don’t be surprised if you leave with a posse of new friends – Australia’s Aboriginal guides are as generous with their stories as they are with their time.
Terms & Conditions
Prices listed are per person in Australian/New Zealand Dollars, based on twin occupancy, including all discounts unless otherwise stated. Prices/Offers are correct as at 27 September 2023 and can be withdrawn without notice. Hotels may charge resort fees not included in this package, payable direct upon check in. Visas are not included. Payments made by credit card will incur a surcharge. Flights are not included.