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Australia Honeymoon Vacations - the Indian-Pacific Railway Journey

There’s an adventuresome spirit in some people who love to take advantage of the Australian honeymoon vacation experience. Australia is a romantic destination all its own, with a unique landscape and a fascinating history to enjoy. The biggest question is which part of the country couples will spend their the honeymoon in. For those that love to travel, the answer is obvious: all of it! Or at least as much as can be done during their stay, and the Indian-Pacific railway journey provides a fascinating, romantic interlude that is sure to delight the senses of new travelers and experienced journeymen alike.

The trip is a three-day journey, beginning in Sydney on one coast before ending in Perth on the opposite side of the country.

The accommodations provided for the trip easily are some of the most comfortable in Australia. Private cabins are available for the happy couple, with large windows that allow them to take in the sheer splendor and variety of the Australian countryside as they roll through it. Dinners and wines are provided in the dining car, allowing the newly-minted couple to share their good news in the pleasant company of fellow travelers.

The destinations along the way allow travelers to spend their honeymoons in several very different cities. Sydney is famous for its magnificent culture, and guests are encouraged to explore the magnificent Opera House and bay before departing on their journey. Midway through the trip, the train pulls through scenic Adeleide, showing off the country’s esteemed festival city. Cook and Kangoorlie are next, with short tours arranged by the railroad to show off the beauty of these unique destinations. Finally there’s Perth, with its own tour of the beautiful Colonial architecture and the Swan River, complete with a delightful dining experience.

Canny guests who make arrangements for a few days’ stay each in Sydney before and Perth after their epic train ride will find the experience a breathtaking, whirlwind way to experience Australia, and a journey sure to make the honeymoon experience as memorable as any on earth.

Australia Family Vacations - Whale Watching

One way that Australia family vacations really shine is that they can be a great chance to combine family fun and excitement with a surprisingly educational experience. During the midst of the Australian “winter” between May and August, whale watching fills just such a niche. Families from all over the world travel to Australia to get a glimpse of these creatures, sailing with experienced guides who are all too happy to share their expertise on the life habits and unique ecology of these beautiful creatures.

There are several whale species that can be observed during whale watching season in Australia. The first are the humpback whales, known for their distinctive, craggy appearance and mournful whale song. Spotting humpbacks is always a pleasure, particularly if they’re in a playful mood. In such circumstances, the whales frequently slap the water with their giant tails, or even leap out and breach with gigantic splashes. The other common species are the southern right whales, bottlenose dolphins — even the rare and gigantic blue whales.

There are many places along the Australian coast that a family on vacation can enjoy whale watching. Western Australia is very popular around the June-August timeframe, and has seen sightings of every whale type that is popular to watch. Tasmania and New South Wales, on the other hand, tend to offer more opportunities for whale watching earlier in the season, particularly May and June. Meanwhile, Victoria and South Australia are good for the entire season from May to October, and Queensland tends to specialize in sightings toward the latter period of the year.

Whenever one chooses to go, there is plenty to see and learn on a whale watching family vacation. The yachts that can be chartered for these excursions often are at the pinnacle of the luxury vacation experience, offering their own unique shipboard food and entertainment experiences. Alternatively, there are also popular whale-watching cruises for a more big-party experience.

Australia Luxury Vacation: At Your Leisure at El Questro Homestead

Australia’s luxury vacations are often all about the beauty of a sharp contrast, and El Questro Homestead in Western Australia is a perfect example of the power of this effect.

Located near the town of Kimberly, the homestead is set amid a beautiful, wild landscape. Known as a steppe climate or semi-arid region, this region is renowned for its ruggedness and stark beauty. The hotel itself is set atop a small plateau, overlooking a short cliffside down onto a nearby river. Whether out on the common area or in the raised lodge rooms, there is always a breathtaking view to behold.

The homestead was constructed with privacy in mind. Each room has its own en-suite and private veranda for personal relaxation and is air conditioned and provided with the finest in luxury furnishings. The Chamberlain Suite, in particular, is prized as it is situated directly over the cliff, with a panoramic view from the veranda, shower and main rooms.

Once again, choice reigns supreme in the dining options at El Questro. Guests are provided the finest varieties in Australian wines and cuisine and are encouraged to dine in any of the homestead’s many settings. Private areas for dining are available at the cliffsides, service can be brought to the guests’ verandas or picnics can be arranged near the homestead’s rock pools and waterfalls.

Finally, for those who enjoy mixing their luxury with a bit of adventure, there are a number of tours and activities offered at the homestead as well. Barramundi fishing is quite popular; guided by local rangers, guests can try to catch one of the most elusive and prestigious of Australian fish. Or there’s the Gorges by boat, a trip along the Chamberlain Gorge on a luxurious small cruise, exploring the unique beauty and geology of the region.

In short, El Questro Homestead is one of Kimberly’s best-kept secrets; it’s a must for those who demand the best in both luxury and privacy for their holiday abroad.

Australia Luxury Vacations: Eat, Drink and Be Merry at Cape Lodge Margaret River

There are three elements to a good Australian luxury vacation: comfortable lodgings, the best of the nation’s unique food and enjoyable activities for everyone involved. All three are quite astoundingly on display at the first-class, award-winning Cape Lodge at Margaret River.

The awards won by this fine establishment certainly are impressive. It was voted in the top 100 hotels in the world for 2010 and was named the best boutique hotel in Australia as well as one of the world’s top 20 vineyard hotels. All of these recognitions are well-deserved for a number of excellent reasons Cape Lodge is only too happy to demonstrate.

Set amid amazing and stunning local scenery, the lodge has easy access to coasts along the Indian Ocean including some of the world’s best beaches and swimming waters. Some of the great Margaret River wine country estates border the lodge as well, and often play host to tours and wine tastings for the numerous guests at this excellent retreat.

The lodgings are suitably decadent. First-class furnishings, spacious arrangements, private patios with grand views — there is nothing out of the reach of Cape Lodge visitors. Also on hand is a first-class restaurant with an outstanding selection of local foods, including vegetarian and organic options, and the wines Margaret River is justly famed worldwide for. Further, a group of up to five couples can also secure the Cape Lodge Residence, a house set aside for just such large gatherings that want close access to one another, but privacy from others.

Activities abound, be it for those eager to set out into the countryside or those guests looking to stay close to their lodgings. A nearby horse ranch offers riding lessons and tours, while two nearby golf courses are available for those who book ahead. But perhaps the best attraction is the lodge’s very own cooking school. If guests find the food to their liking, they can attend classes and learn the arts of Australian cuisine for a chance to take home some of this wonderful vacation with them.

Luxury Resort Travel - El Questro Homestead

El Questro Homestead is the greatest Australian luxury vacation destination for those travelers that want to get in touch with the wilderness around them.

While Australia is well-known for its outback experiences and famous for the Great Barrier Reef’s exquisite beach scenes, El Questro combines the full wilderness experience with absolute luxury. This is where you can combine your desire for indoor luxury with the extreme nature of the outback.

El Questro is surrounded by Australia’s rugged Kimberly landscape, though the resort stands completely in contrast to the beauty that surrounds it. Visitors can spend the day exploring the natural landscape and spend their nights relaxing in a luxury suite featuring of the amenities.

This place has everything. Nature lovers can bask in the thermal Zebedee Springs or nestle up under an ancient boab tree with a book. If you prefer to watch animals in their natural habitats, you can join the local wallabies while you sit back in the shade. With lush tropical gardens surrounding you, the Homestead is the ideal Australian luxury vacation for families. It has a swimming pool and tennis court that is just for the Homestead guests to use.

With a full day hiking and exploring behind you, you can end your day by dining on the region’s best in gourmet cuisine. Whether you want to eat above a cliff or you prefer to picnic in the wilderness, they have you covered. Even though the Homestead is only open from April to October, this is one Australian luxury vacation that you will not want to miss out on.

In terms of Australia adventure vacations, scuba diving is one of the most sought-after experiences by eager travelers. The country’s oceanscape is rightly famous for a diverse collection of wildlife, extraordinary beauty and exceptional locations in which to dive. Entirely encircled by the ocean as it is, Australia is home to numerous exciting locations to take a dive, and a grand tour of them would make a solid basis for any exciting trip to the island nation.

The most famous of these destinations is, of course, the Great Barrier Reef, northeast of Queensland. Unlike the myth of the Great Wall of China, the Great Barrier Reef actually can be seen from space, without special magnification. It is a vast and mysterious ecosystem of coral and other aquatic life, with a bounty of colors and species to examine and delight in. There are even the shipwrecks of the Yongala and the Llewellyn to explore when accompanied by an experienced guide.

For those who can’t get enough of the big and the powerful, Ningaloo in Western Australia offers the opportunity to swim with the massive creatures known as Whale Sharks. Entirely nonaggressive toward humans, they are still tremendous beasts and are awe-inspiring to see cruising through the water only meters away.

Travelers with a more playful bent will not want to miss Baird Bay in South Australia. This locale offers the exciting chance to swim with affectionate and sometimes rambunctious sea lions and dolphins, some of the most beautiful and energetic creatures in the sea. Whole herds and pods of these animals will happily swim around and tease divers with their playful antics, and if the diver is lucky they might even pose for an underwater photo shot.

Diving is an exciting, traditional way to explore the beauty and the power of a world that’s just next door to our own, yet in many ways entirely different. When it comes to a chance to explore the diving life of a country as rich and diverse as Australia, the opportunity is one well worth taking.

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Perth is one of the open secrets in Australia luxury vacations — famous enough to be known about, but just reserved enough to be less traveled than its more famous cousins such as Melbourne and Sydney. Folks on holiday can find a great deal to appreciate in Perth, and there are plenty of activities and accommodations to settle a truly luxurious vacation around.

For example, a happy couple on a honeymoon could spend a day on the Swan River, taking an elegant cruise along the shores of the city. This kind of cruise has something for everyone, with a stop in Fremantle to explore the area’s historic district, or a slow trip to the sunny and relaxing beaches of nearby Rottnest Island for a day in the sun and languid air.

Fremantle itself is a delightful place to spend a day in relaxed enjoyment. A truly bohemian place, the entire town is less of an administrative location and more of a semi-permanent festival of arts and culture. Street musicians and performers happily entertain all over the city, free concerts are always available at the local Arts Centre, and the famous Australian zest for diverse and lively food is happily on display for any visitor to participate in.

There are also many parks to take a relaxing holiday among in Perth. Most spectacular of all is King’s Park, home to an impressive and beautiful Eucalyptus forest that provides pleasant, cool shade in an afternoon of sunny relaxation. Or if guests are feeling more active, they can contact local guides for talks and walks that cover all manner of topics, ranging from the biology and history of the park and Perth itself, to practical survival skills that people still use to get by in the Australian bush country.

Whatever a traveler’s fancy, Perth will surely have something to satisfy it, and is always eager to put itself on display for those who travel to this corner of the world.

The benefit of an Australian vacation package is that it often allows for several attractions to be combined into one, all-you-can-see extravaganza. For example, some such packages tend to include tours and sightseeing, while also occurring during one of Australia’s wonderful festivals. Some of these, such as Australia Day in Sydney Harbour, tend to be well-known and exciting. But events like the Margaret River Wine Festival are almost a regional secret, and can be a surprising delight for those in the know.

Margaret River is the sort of location that easily combines with a tour package. It can be reached via a four-hour car journey from Perth, which allows for the opportunity to have a luxury driving tour of the countryside between the cities, or by a helicopter journey that lasts a little over an hour — and which affords a splendid view of the varied and breathtaking terrain below.

Once there, guests can partake in the Vintage Vibe Street Fiesta, a party where the locals and growers cut loose to inaugurate the fun. There’s the downhill wine barrel race, to be observed from the safe corners of cafés and bistros. There are growers and sellers offering samples of their wares. They’re always eager to chat and boast about the advantages of the region’s unique growing culture for their winemaking.

In the evening, the city classes out as only a winegrowing town can. There are auctions for fine art and rare vintages, an elegant ball and reception to dress up and mingle at and cabaret shows to take in while sampling still more of the local grown offerings. Then there’s the day out at the Vintage Festival, a bazaar-style gathering of sellers and buyers, where guests can roam, taste, mingle and chat as they please.

With something available for everyone, and where even the journey to the city is a rewarding experience, Margaret River’s festival is an event to consider when planning that next luxury trip down under.

There are few vacations quite as comfortable as those spent on warm beaches or swimming in lovely oceans, and an Australia beach vacation is one of the best examples to be found of this kind of enjoyable luxury. With a multitude of beautiful and powerful wildlife, a surplus of gorgeous sandy beaches and clear waters ideal for swimming and snorkeling, Australia should be high on the list for anyone seeking the ever-popular dream of fun in the sun.

With that in mind, here are three of Australia’s better-known beaches, and the wonderful reasons a traveler should try to visit each in his or her time down under.

Sydney, New South Wales

The beaches around the city of Sydney are some of Australia’s most famous. They include bustling urban beaches right on the city front, complete with access to all the fine dining and beautiful culture that Sydney is known for, as well as fine beaches a bit further out, such as the calmer and more relaxed Coogee beach (perfect for those who are eager to escape some of the bustle while staying fairly close to big city life).

Byron Bay, New South Wales

Byron Bay is a delightful choice for the travel-minded vacationer. The coast is home to some of the most beautiful and interesting lighthouses in the world, and is a fine escape from the more developed areas for those eager for a bit of wild living. In particular, marine life can be seen easily from the shore and while snorkeling.

Perth, Western Australia

Perth is home to one of the more exciting beaches for Australian vacationers-goers — the lively and party-oriented Scarborough Beach. Home to a vibrant beach-party and surfing culture, it’s a fantastic place to meet new friends, try out an exciting new sport in wind or kite surfing and have an all around good time in the company of friendly locals and fellow travelers from abroad.

Whale sharks are tremendous creatures and ever so intimidating when you swim with them near Ningaloo Reef in Western Australia. Huge in body, powerfully muscled and generally considered very peaceful animals, they are a compelling sight as they move through the sea. Despite their name, these sharks do not eat people like their more famous cousins do, instead straining plankton with their complex mouths. Swimming alongside one can be an incredible experience, and for those with a vacation package to Australia, they’re well worth the effort of tracking down.

The excursions range from scuba dives to simple snorkeling trips. A senior supervisor is present to make sure the event is handled properly, so there need not be any undue fears of “doing it wrong” so long as their advice is followed. Most advise keeping about 10 feet away from the shark. For those of us quite used to our time on land, even that distance can be an enticing, exhilarating thrill. Ten feet is less distance across than the average room in a house, and that’s how close these dives bring people to these incredible, gorgeous creatures.

The encounters are usually brief, with the party setting out for the day’s excursion on a boat. This is a great part of any Australian vacation, with the bright sun in the sky and the salt of the ocean in the air. When the main guest of the party is spotted, the group prepares, then scrambles into the waters and watches in awe as the powerful creature slides by. From testimonials, the sharks are quite aware of the visitors’ presence, but are completely unconcerned and just continue on their way, turning aside only if necessary.

Whether your interest is just in a brand new experience to share with friends and family or you’re secreting a passion for marine biology, take a little time out of your vacation schedule to have a look at a real powerhouse of the sea.