13 Day East Coast Beaches & Reef

AAT Kings Guided Tour starting in Cairns and finishing in Sydney

Read 6 reviews and enjoy exclusive savings on AAT Kings's 13 Day East Coast Beaches & Reef. This coastal journey begins in tropical Cairns, where you'll board a high-speed catamaran to travel to the World Heritage listed Great Barrier Reef. Australia's east coast is justly...read more
Operator: AAT Kings
Type: Guided Tour (Affordable)
Style: Best Buys
Max Group Size: 49
Duration: 13 Days
From: Cairns to Sydney
Tour Code: QCS
Visits: Australia
Our Price From:
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Per Person ($AU)
Day By Day
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Welcome to Cairns
Welcome to Cairns! Meet your Travel Director and fellow travellers for an orientation tour of the laid back tropical city. This evening get to know each other over a drink and delicious meal featuring fresh seasonal produce at a local restaurant. Stay: Novotel Cairns Oasis Resort, Cairns (2 nights) (D)
Great Barrier Reef
Board a high speed catamaran and cruise out to the Great Barrier Reef. The world heritage listed reef is the only living organism you can see from the moon.  Imagine that! You'll have the opportunity to go snorkelling and view this natural living wonder up- close (equipment provided) and view the spectacular coral and tropical fish from the underwater observatory and the semi- submersible craft. Enjoy a delicious tropical buffet lunch before you return to Cairns in the late afternoon.  You have a free evening to do as you choose. Why not take a stroll along the esplanade and check out the Cairns Night Market. (B/L)
Cairns – Mission Beach
This morning travel to Kuranda and enjoy some free time to explore 'the village in the rainforest'. Next up visit Millaa Millaa Falls and the famous Curtain Fig Tree. Keep an eye out for the spectacular Ulysses Butterfly! Before heading back to the coast, stop at Mungalli Creek Dairy. The dairy was established by the Watson family who believe that it's vital that food be produced as naturally as possible. You'll get the chance to taste their biodynamic cheese and yogurt and sit down to a delicious afternoon tea. There will be time to take a walk along the shore and feel the golden sand between your toes when you arrive in Mission Beach this afternoon. Stay: Castaways Resort & Spa, Mission Beach. (B/D)
Mission Beach – Hamilton Island
Travel down the coast towards tonight's stopover in the heart of the Great Barrier Reef on spectacular Hamilton Island. You'll visit Townsville where there's time for a stroll along the Strand, then travel to Airlie Beach to catch the ferry to the island, one of 74 tropical islands that make up the Whitsundays. You'll be surrounded by pristine beaches, and a kaleidoscope of coral and marine life! Stay: Reef View Hotel, Hamilton Island (2 nights) (B/D)
Hamilton Island'
Take a cruise to explore famous Whitehaven Beach, voted Australia's best! Feel the sand between your toes and if you're up to it, take a walk to a lookout for views over the beautiful waters and islands of the Coral Sea. This afternoon you're free to enjoy paradise. (B)
Hamilton Island – Rockhampton
Return to the mainland and travel south through Mackay, Australia's sugar capital, to Sarina for a guided tour through a miniature sugar mill and lunch! On your tour you'll get a peak in to sugar cane processing and witness fully functioning sugar processing and distilling equipment in action. Afterwards you can taste some of the products made on site before sitting down for a light lunch. Continue to Rockhampton, Australia's beef capital! Your night is free so why not try some local beef at one of the town's steakhouses. Stay: Quality Hotel Regent, Rockhampton (B/L)
Rockhampton – Hervey Bay
Cross the Tropic of Capricorn and stop at Langmorn Station, a fully operational cattle station.  A member of the Creed family will treat you to a guided tour of the property including their original family homestead, built in 1873. Enjoy morning tea in the garden in the company of the pet kangaroo! Continue to Hervey Bay, gateway to Fraser Island. Stay: Mantra Hervey Bay (B/D)
Hervey Bay – Fraser Island – Noosa
A day of discovery lies ahead as you cross by ferry to explore the wonders of World Heritage listed Fraser Island. Visit Lake McKenzie, ringed with magnificent white sandy beaches. Walk through the ancient rainforest at Central Station with its huge satiny, scribbly gum and kauri trees. Enjoy lunch before your 4WD tour takes you to the coloured sands of Rainbow Beach (tidal) and beyond on to the Sunshine Coast resort town of Noosa. Stay: The Sebel Resort Noosa (2 nights) (B/L)
Noosa 'Free Time'
Take time out to discover Noosa for yourself. Swim at Noosa Main Beach or venture a little further with an easy, spectacular walk along the headland through to Noosa National Park. If you're feeling adventurous, you may like to hire a stand-up paddle board or even take a boat ride through the incredible Noosa Everglades, one of Australia's most beautiful wilderness areas. You'll love the dark waterways and myriad of wildlife along the Noosa River- it's truly spectacular! This evening join your fellow travellers for dinner at a restaurant with views over the beach. (B/D)
Noosa – Gold Coast
Visit Australia Zoo, made famous by the Crocodile Hunter, the late Steve Irwin, Terri Irwin and Bindi. Enjoy a sneak peek in to the Australia Zoo Wildlife Hospital and see how AAT Kings works with the Wildlife Warriors to support the koala rehabilitation project at the hospital, the country's largest and busiest wildlife facility. Catch a show in the world famous Crocoseum and wander through the zoo's fascinating grounds. It's bound to be a wildlife experience you'll never forget. Later, you travel to Brisbane for a sightseeing tour then continue to the Gold Coast. Tonight is free for you to dine at one of the many restaurants and cafés. Stay: Hotel Grand Chancellor (2 nights) (B)
Gold Coast 'Free Time'
Today is yours to do as you choose. You may like to take an optional experience to the stunning Gold Coast Hinterland to discover the rainforest and the picturesque village of Mt. Tamborine or just take the opportunity to relax and unwind with a stroll along famous Surfers Paradise beach. (B)
Gold Coast - Port Macquarie
Journey to Cape Byron Lighthouse and enjoy superb views from Australia's eastern-most point over the Pacific Ocean. At the right time of year you may be lucky enough to spot migrating whales frolicking off the coast. Afterwards spend time discovering the relaxed bohemian vibe of Byron Bay. Continue to picturesque seaside Port Macquarie for the evening. Stay: Waters Edge, Port Maquarie (B)
Port Macquarie - Sydney
Travel to the premier wine producing region of the Hunter Valley to enjoy exclusive tastings at McGuigan Wines, plus a farewell lunch at another local winery. Learn about the wine industry from a local expert, before continuing to Sydney where your holiday concludes in the late afternoon. (B/L)
AAT Kings Inclusions
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Journey Highlights
  • Cruise on the Great Barrier Reef
  • Snorkel with tropical fish
  • Cruise on Lake Barrine
  • See beautiful Millaa Millaa Falls
  • Indulge at Mungalli Creek Dairy
  • Play a game of cricket on Mission Beach
  • Stop for lunch in Townsville
  • Explore the Whitsundays
  • Experience island life on Hamilton Island
  • Explore Langmorn Station and enjoy homemade morning tea
  • Swim in Lake McKenzie
  • Indulge in an Aussie BBQ lunch
  • Explore Fraser Island by 4WD
  • Relax on the beaches of Noosa
  • Visit the koalas in Australia Zoo's Wildlife Hospital
  • Check out amazing wildlife at Australia Zoo
  • Explore Brisbane
  • Discover bohemian Byron Bay
  • Visit Cape Byron Lighthouse on the most eastern point of Australia
  • Dine on Sydney's harbourfront
Trip Inclusions
  • 'Best Buys' Inclusions & Accommodation
  • Experienced Tour Director and Driver Guide
  • Comfortable accommodation
  • Tour by luxury air-conditioned coach with 2-door access, restroom, seatbelts, reclining seats and panoramic windows
  • Airport transfers (see flight information below)
Included Meals
  • Full buffet breakfasts (12)
  • Lunches (3)
  • Dinners (5)
  • Farewell dinner (1)
Arrival & Departure
  • Day 1: Flights to arrive prior to 2.00pm into Cairns
  • Day 13: Flights to depart after 8.00pm from Sydney Airport
Trip Notes
  • Due to seasonal conditions, this itinerary may change without notice.
  • Disruptions to itinerary may occur.
AAT Kings
AAT Kings Reviews: (380)
Tours on Sale: 62
Accommodation: 3.5-4.5 Star
Average Age: 55-60+ years
Types: Coach Tours & Short Breaks
Max Group Size(s): 49 & 20
Budget: Premium & Low Cost
Destinations: Australia, New Zealand
Reviews (6)
Trip reviews from past clients of Global Journeys who have travelled on East Coast Beaches & Reef with AAT Kings.
Feb 2017
2 Trips
“Worthwhile ”
Booking With Global Journeys
Great trip overall. Great tour director, Paul Cotterill. Had a fun time visiting the various beach destinations and the in-between sites. I am just disappointed with the Novotel in Cairns where the cleanliness of the pool was not at par and room housekeeping was extremely disappointing (no vacuuming or mopping for three days, tea cups and glasses not washed).
Jun 2014
1 Trip
“Very satisfied with the journey and with Global Journeys”
Booking With Global Journeys
I was very satisfied with the journey and with the services of Global Journeys. Everything was well organized and went very well. The Coach was in an excellent condition, the seats very comfortable and the Driver excellent. The accommodations were in good condition and the daily breakfast-buffets and the included lunches and dinners very nice. If I have the opportunity to travel again to Australia (or somewhere else), I will again use your services.
Mar 2014
1 Trip
“Loved my tour”
Booking With Global Journeys
Loved my tour. Our Tour Guide was outstanding - she was knowledgeable and informative and very friendly. Didn't like all the rules the coach driver sent our way...a bit much. Loved where we went, loved Kirby's assistance at Global Journeys and would recommend this tour to others.
Feb 2014
1 Trip
“Global Journeys and AAT Kings were great”
Booking With Global Journeys
The East Coast Explorer gave us a nice look at this area of Australia. Highlights were Fraser Island and Farm Homestead visit. Mission Beach Castaways resort on the beach was great - wished we could stay an extra day. We also really enjoyed Noosa. The only negative was the Travel Lodge Rockhampton - AC was noisy and the hallway carpet smelled so bad that we had to stop breathing in order to get to our room - think this stop over needs to be replaced. Global Journeys and AAT Kings were great.
Mar 2011
1 Helpful Vote
1 Trip
“Tour director really made sure we were taken care of”
Booking With Global Journeys
Another excellent tour by Global Journeys and AAT Kings. Smooth booking process, overall good tour. We tried scuba diving on this tour at the Great Barrier Reef, very good, good price for the introductary dive. It is a nice way to see the east coast. There were places that we would have like an extra day (Surfer's Paradise & Gold Coast) and also would have perfered better room's at Coff's Harbour hotel/motel (the upper rooms were better than ground floor). As we are vegetarian, our tour director Gillian really made sure we were taken care of and weren't just eating salad. Also, there are early starts because there is lots to do during the days. Definitely recommend the tour and Global Journeys.
Prices & Dates
There are currently no tour departures available for this tour - either it's the end of the season, or this tour itinerary has been changed and will no longer continue. Feel free to contact us for information about when next seasons dates will be released or click to view general brochure release dates for all destinations.
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Tour Notes
Trip prices are per person, and reflect applicable discounts. Discounts are subject to availability, exclusive to Global Journeys and may be withdrawn at any time without notice. Trip prices are correct at the time of the products going live, however are subject to confirmation at the time of booking. All trip information is correct at time of trips going live, however are subject to change by AAT Kings. Full terms & conditions are available here.

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