Senior Tour Albums

Adelaide, Ayers Rock, Melbourne Kiwi Escorted Trip 23 May to 3 June 2010

On May 23 16 ,of us departed Auckland, arriving in Adelaide in time for supper. Our first day was spent exploring the Adelaide region -historic Glenelg, the Adelaide Hills, the lovely German township of Hahndorf. A few tipples at a local vineyard finished our day, before returning to Adelaide city for dinner. The next day, we departed for Port Augusta -the last major township before departing for the "Red Centre". We had a guided tour of the Arid Gardens -proof that beautiful flowers, trees and plants can thrive in desert conditions. Day 4 saw an early start as we departed Port Augusta for Coober Pedy, with a stop at Woomera on the way. Woomera is an Australian icon, a testing centre for missiles during the cold war. The museum is a really interesting place to visit. The drive to Coober Pedy is an interesting one; the vista is very beautiful -red, orange soil and abundant vegetation. And more dead kangaroos than you can count! We arrived in the opal mining town in the middle of the afternoon in time to explore an opal mine, check out how the locals live underground and visit a kangaroo orphanage. The we checked into our own underground accommodation, and out to dinner. Day 5 saw us cross the border of South Australia to the Northern Territories, rewarded by the sight of Ayers Rock as we neared the end of our day. A wonderfully sumptuous dinner, a few cold ones and off to bed, ready to arise at dawn (for those who wanted to) to watch sunrise over Uluru -you may imagine blazing colour, but instead you are greeted with steadily deepening pastel hues. Beautiful. After the intrepid souls had a chance to enjoy their breakfast, then the group reunited to reenter the Uluru Park for a guided walk, a visit to the Cultural centre and a drive to see Kata Tjuta -a neighbouring rock formation. The park is full of wildlife -although none of the nasty kinds, we timed our trip for snake hibernation season! It was a thrill to see herds of wild camels. That evening we attended the highlight of our trip, The Sounds of Silence dinner. Fine dining in the desert with an astronomer reading the gloriously clear night sky. No one wanted it to end! We left the next day for a relatively short, final 'outback' drive to arrive in Alice Springs in plenty of time for our own private show at the local reptile park, and a visit to the Fying Doctors Service. Then check-in, Happy Hour and out to dinner. Sunday saw us visit Flynn's grave -a missionary who founded the Fying Doctor Service, enjoy a guided tour of the truy lovely Simpson's Gap -a few were lucky enough to spot the elusive Rock Wallabies and then back to Alice to enjoy the Todd Street Markets. Dinner that night was at the legendary Outlanders Steakhouse Restaurant as we farewelled the Outback. Day 9 we flew to Melbourne for our last few days, a chance to relax a little, shop and of course to see the Melbourne City Sights and experience the joys of the Saint Kilda cakeshops and the Queen Victoria Markets. A fine time was had by all and we are planning to repeat this trip next year.

Take a look at our photo album -click once for a HUGE view then again for 'normal' size.

Waiheke Island Tour 28 -29 October 2009

An overnight trip exploring the delights of Waiheke Island. the Mudbrick vineyard, Te Whau vineyard, the Olive Grove, Man of War Bay and Stony Batter.

Take a look at our photo album -click once for a HUGE view then again for 'normal' size.

Melbourne Tulips September 27 to October 4 2009

A trip to Melbourne with us ALWAYS includes a Yarra River cruise, St Kilda, Queen Victoria Markets, Shrine of Remembrance and the trams. But this tour had 3 additonal highlights -the Tesselar Tulip Festival -like a little slice of Holland; a day in Bendigo (and for this group, an unplanned visit to a very special hat shop) riding the talking tram and a day on the Mornington Peninsula. The Dandenong Mountain Range are about an hour out of Melbourne City. Home to a colony of very cheeky parrots (that we took the time to feed), and quaint townships like Olinda and Sassafras, it is also home to Tesselars, cultivators of fine tulips and roses. Every year they celebrate their tulips and all things Danish, with a festival and open their acres of tulip fields for all to see. In contrast to the craft shops and gardens of the Dandenongs, is the town of Bendigo. The elaborate architecture is testimony to its heyday as a goldmining town. Mornington Peninsula was a wonderful day -lavender farms, wonderful craft shops, vineyards and specialty farms -oh the yummy joys of the Strawberry Farm!

Take a look at our photo album -click once for a HUGE view then again for 'normal' size.

Bay of Islands Coach Tour September 9 -10 2009

An overnight trip visiting Kerikeri, the Treaty Grounds, Paihia and Russell.

Take a look at our photo album -click once for a HUGE view then again for 'normal' size.

Coromandel Coach Tour August 5 -6 2009

An overnight trip visiting Coromandel Township, the old Mining Museum, a ride on the Driving Creek railway, Whitianga, Thames and Ngatea.

Take a look at our photo album -click once for a HUGE view then again for 'normal' size.

Melbourne and Tasmania Kiwi Care Trip May 17 to 24 2009

On May 17th we departed Auckland to spend 8 days enjoying Melbourne and Tasmania. It may have been wet and cold in NZ for that week, but Australia turned on fine Autumn weather for us, with sunny clear days, and crisp evenings -easy to justify a drink or three by a roaring fire. We had a wonderful time, Mike accompanied as Tour Leader and driver; with Debbie, our nurse -just in case! Initially, we stayed for 2 nights in Melbourne, a great introduction to this wonderful city (a full Melbourne trip is planned for later this year). A cruise on the Yarra, a tour of the city including lunch in St Kildas (for the cake shops!), a visit to The Shrine of Remembrance, were just a few of the stops. A morning at Queen Victoria Markets just wasn't long enough, however, the end of our third day saw us jetting off to Hobart, Tasmania.Accommodation in Hobart was at Rydges, a 4 star Hotel built around an original Female Factory. There were five of these women/children prisons in Hobart during its penal colony days. Our first day took us for a tour of the city and environs, including a snowball fight up Mt Wellington (made famous in Bryce Courtney's book The Potato Factory). We travelled through the Huon Valley, past the Shot Tower and had morning tea in Huonville on the Huon River. The afteroon saw us return to Salamanca for lunch and shopping.The next day -The Cadbury's Chocolate Factory, situated on its own little island! Hot chocolates made from flakes are to be recommended! A visit to the quaint village of Richmond followed -Scallop pies also a wonderful local treat also.Our last full day in Tasmania took us to the historic Port Arthur penal site. Here you can wander around the many original buildings. In its day, Port Arthur was considered the harshest of the penal colonies. Hobart has a wide range of restaurants, and our 4 night stay gave us the opportunity to sample a variety of them. Saturday morning was spent at the legendary Salamanca Markets before boarding our flight back to Melbourne for our final night before returning home.

See our photo album -click once for a HUGE view then again for 'normal' size.

Norfolk Island Kiwi Care September 2008

On September 28th we departed Auckland International for a glorious week on Norfolk Island. (Note to ourselves- NEVER leave the day daylight savings starts, ever again!) Our group of 12 haled from all over New Zealand, Whangarei all the way down to Dunedin.  Norfolk turned on her charms, only 1 day with showers, other than that the weather suited the mood of the group, friendly and convivial.The itinerary was packed with a variety of tours and activities including re-enactment dinners; some beautiful gardens, HelenReddy’s amongst them; visiting the historical ruins and the cemetery at Kingston; the truly memorable cliff top breakfast; Saint Barnabus Church; and the Tahitian show where one of own –Mervyn – was crowned King of the Night! Some things just happened by chance -we enjoyed watching how they unloaded a cargo ship without port facilities. It does make you wonder how many cars there are at the bottom of the harbour!Our wonder nurse, Debbie, was kept busy for the week but the only accident she had to deal with was when a woman from another tour party was injured.  We’re glad we happened to be there to help.When we launched our Kiwi Care product last year, we did so because events in our own family made us acutely aware that personal circumstances have made travel difficult for some.  The inclusion of a nurse in the tour party, a caring attitude and a willingness to go the extra mile to deal with wheelchairs and walking aides seemed ‘radical’ to many in the industry.  We’re really pleased that the success of this trip justified our vision –many more wonderful tours to come!Thanks to our TERRIFIC TEN.

Norfolk Island September 08 photo album

 

 

 

We would like to thank the following talented photographers and Organisations: A J Hackett Bungy New Zealand; Rob Suisted; Shotover Jet; Destination Queenstown; Destination Northland; Chris McLennan; Holger Leue; Zorb Rotorua; NZ Ski; Hiroshi Nameda; Adventure Film; Tourism New Zealand.