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Honeymoons and weddings abroad are tailor-made by Expressions Holidays. Contact us for a range of honeymoon and wedding destinations around the world and an amazing choice of honeymoons from island-hopping to visiting cultural sites.
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  • The Victoria Australia City and Wine Touring Holiday

    The Victoria Australia City and Wine Touring Holiday

    6 Nights / 7 Days 
    Victoria – Yarra Valley
    About this tour

    The Victoria Australia City and Wine Touring Holiday is the perfect holiday for those looking to wine taste in the idyllic vineyards of the Yarra Valley. In addition, this tour will allow you to explore some of Victoria’s best rural scenery such as the Dandenong Ranges, as well as the sophisticated and trendy streets of Australia’s capital of sport and culture, Melbourne. It is a perfect extension to an existing touring holiday, or a great shorter holiday in its own right. Over the course of 6-nights, you will experience the fashionable metropolis of Melbourne, beautiful rural Victoria, and some of Victoria’s best vineyards in the Yarra Valley. It is easily extended into a larger touring holiday in Australia.
    Highlights 
    This list includes optional activities possible in the featured locations of the tour, they will entail an additional cost on the base price of the itinerary.
    • Visit Australia’s capital of sport and culture, Melbourne 
    • Discover Melbourne’s charming café culture, excellent restaurants, and trendy suburbs such as St Kilda
    • Drive through the charming countryside and Dandenong Ranges of rural Victoria and into the idyllic vineyards of the Yarra Valley
    • Visit some of the excellent wineries that now number more than 80, enjoying outstanding chardonnay, pinot noir and sparkling wines, and the excellent food to match
    • Explore your idyllic surrounds to find great bushwalks, beautiful scenery, and stunning Australian wildlife
    Tour description 
    Starting in the trendy streets of fashionable Melbourne, this tour will introduce you well to life as a local in Australia’s capital of sport and culture. Enjoy the liveable environment of this metropolis, whilst exploring its exciting suburbs such as St Kilda, and its beautiful hinterland such as is found in the Mornington Peninsula or Phillip Island. Next, you will pick up your 4x4 hire car to drive through the charming countryside of rural Victoria and the Dandenong Ranges to reach the idyllic vineyards of the Yarra Valley. Here you can pick your way through the excellent vineyards, which now number in excess of 80, tasting the chardonnay, pinot noir, and sparkling wines that have benefitted from a cooler climate to put this area on the map. Whilst you are there, do not miss the spectacular scenery, and the ample opportunity for bush walking, scenic drives, as well as encountering an extraordinary variety of native Australian wildlife. 
    Our range of accommodation includes everything from luxury boutique hotels, to remote wilderness eco-lodges, and safari-style luxury camping. Hand-crafted experiences make your bespoke holiday to Australia even more special, and a seemingly infinite number of possibilities are available upon request. Please do not hesitate to get in touch and let us know how we can further personalise your once-in-a-lifetime tour Down Under.  
    Prices
    From £2,400 per person for stays in our ‘value hotels’.
    From £2,600 per person for stays in our ‘luxury hotels’.
    Please see our hotel lists for more information on our hotels, and what is included in these base rates. 
    Dates
    This holiday can be arranged throughout the year. Timings may vary depending on the month and day of the week. 
    What’s Included
    • Return scheduled flights with British Airways, Qantas or Emirates from London to Melbourne in economy class.
    • Transfers and car hire where specified in our itinerary. 
    • Accommodation sharing a double or twin room. Please see our suggested list of hotels for details of base accommodation type. 
    • The meals included with your tour will vary by chosen accommodation. Please see our hotel suggestions for included board basis. 
    What’s not included 
    • Meals and drinks, except as specified in our hotel suggestions. 
    • Optional tours and activities within each location, except where explicitly specified as included in our itinerary, or by hotels in our hotel lists. 
    • Personal expenses. 
    • Insurance.
    • Visa and Passport. 
    You will need a full British passport with at least six months validity, and a Visa for travel to Australia. Visas requirements should be checked with the Australian authorities. More details are available from www.eta.immi.gov.au

    Day One: Melbourne 
    Arrive in Melbourne. You a met upon arrival and transferred to your accommodation by private chauffeur. Settle into the time zone and your luxury accommodation. 
    Day Two: Melbourne 
    Having settled into the charm and character of Australia’s most fashionable city, it’s time to explore. Candidly multicultural, it is characterised by a mix of Victorian architecture and a spectacular modern skyline, a vibrant café scene, fantastic food and wine, great beaches, and sophisticated leafy boulevards. Enjoy a day of leisure as you explore the sights and sounds of Australia’s cultural and sporting capital. Of particular interest here might be shopping in the high-end precinct of Collins Street, visiting Melbourne’s glamorous fashion district, or perhaps venturing to Federation Square or the home of cricket at the MCG (Melbourne Cricket Ground). 
    Day Three: Melbourne 
    Today you could spend your time exploring some of Melbourne’s chic and elegant suburbs. The bay side St Kilda, for example, is an excellent place to head in search of great cafes, delectable restaurants, sublime bay side views and a refreshing coastline. Others may opt to head to the rediscovered and historic Williamstown, enjoying the seaside, the history of Melbourne, and again, spectacular bay side views. Further afield, the Mornington Peninsula or even Phillip Island are accessible, and allow for some spectacular scenery and wildlife encounters. Phillip Island for example is home to the ‘Penguin Parade’, a privileged spot from which to watch Little Penguins return to their beachside colonies. 
    Day Four: Melbourne onwards to the Yarra Valley 
    Pick up your 4x4 hire car and drive North East into the charming countryside of rural Victoria. The Yarra Valley is located less than hour away from downtown Melbourne, however it is well recommended that today you take a longer detour through the scenic Dandenong Ranges. This ancient mountain range can be seen from Melbourne city centre on a clear day, and comprises a patchwork quilt of exotic trees, national parks, scenic winding roads and quaint hilltop villages. Stop at a number of artist studios, craft stores and gardens, or embark on a hike in one of the excellent National Park trails. Continue onto the Yarra Valley in the evening and settle into your luxury accommodation with your first taste of the local Pinot noir, and an excellent dinner to match. 
    Day Five: Yarra Valley 
    After a leisurely breakfast, it’s time to explore the wineries of the Yarra Valley. The first vines were planted here in 1838, and since that time, the Yarra Valley has become recognised as one of Australia’s foremost cool climate wine producing regions. A diverse range of varieties are now found in this area, reflecting the dynamic climate, elevation and soil types. It is this variety that now make it such an exciting region to explore for the wine aficionado. From sparkling wines to chardonnay to complex Pinot noirs, Cabernet Sauvignon and Shiraz, there are now in excess of 80 wineries producing high quality wine in the Yarra Valley. Spend your day visiting the welcoming cellar doors, and taste and learn about the local wine-making. The main highways of Maroondah, Melba and Warburton are a great way to discover the Yarra Valley. Many of these wineries incorporate great food to match, so you can be sure of a truly gastronomic experience. 
    Day Six: Yarra Valley 
    Today you could enjoy more wine exploration by visiting some of the most renowned of the Yarra Valley wineries. Key names here include Yering Station, Domaine Chandon, and TarraWarra Estate, but exciting finds can be gleaned from focusing your exploration on more boutique-styled producers. Alternatively, the Yarra Valley has a wealth of natural assets that you could explore for a day that was less wine-centric. For example, there are a number of state and national parks in the area that provide excellent bush walking and cycling. The Centenary Trail for example follows a disused railway line between Warburton and Lilydale, and at 38km it provides an excellent journey for the adventurous. Elsewhere, there are some achingly pretty scenic drives available, particularly through the Warburton, Healesville and Marysville triangle, and for those interested in Australian wildlife, the Healesville Sanctuary is an excellent wildlife sanctuary for Australian fauna. 
    Day Seven: Return Home 
    Wake to sample the last of the scenery and climate before driving back to Melbourne to drop off your hire car and return home. Of course, this tour could form a smaller component in a larger touring holiday of Australia. In which case join the next chapter of your tour today. 

    The Victoria Australia City and Wine Touring Holiday map

    Value Hotels 
    Melbourne 
    The Lyall Hotel and Spa
     
    In the fashionable suburb of South Yarra, this sophisticated hotel enjoys a great location for exploring Melbourne, as well as a genuinely boutique ambience. We include Continental Breakfast and accommodation for two sharing 1 x Deluxe One Bedroom Suite.
    Yarra Valley 
    Yarra Valley Lodge
     
    Set in the heart of the stunning Yarra Valley countryside, the Yarra Valley Lodge is a large and well-appointed lodge, that acts as a great base for exploring the region. We include accommodation for two sharing 1 x Lodge Room. 
    Luxury Hotels 
    Melbourne 
    Park Hyatt Melbourne

    Offering 5-star accommodation in the centre of Melbourne’s cosmopolitan buzz, enjoy views over St Patrick’s Cathedral, Fitzroy Gardens and the architecture of the city centre. We include Full Breakfast and accommodation for two sharing 1 x King Room. 
    Yarra Valley 
    Chateau Yering
      
    Sat grandly on a 250-acre estate, this gracious Victorian mansion casts sweeping views across the Yarra Valley, as well as its own heritage garden. The historic homestead was renovated in 1997 to provide the utmost in luxury offerings within the Yarra Valley. We include Full Breakfast and accommodation for two sharing 1 x Melba Suite.

    All about Australia 
    Australia is a vast landscape of contradiction and variety. From the distinct, dusty red of the outback in Ayers Rock to the tropics of the Daintree Rainforest in the Far North Queensland, from the superb ski resorts of the Snowy Mountains in New South Wales, to the humid plains of Kakadu National Park in the Northern Territory. For this reason, the only true way to visit Australia is by undertaking a touring holiday. To travel between the dynamic corners of this magical continent, and to make the most of the multifarious activities on offer. You have to be prepared to travel far, but you will be richly rewarded with awe-inspiring landscapes that exist on a scale that is barely imaginable. 
    Surrounded by 18,000km of beaches, this is a nation that thrives on the outdoors. From sailing in the Whitsunday Islands to Aussie Rules football, from skiing in the Snowy Mountains to scuba diving on the Great Barrier Reef, and everything in between. Yet in contemporary Australia, the thriving cosmopolitan city centres are also important sites of interest in their own right. Here you will find distinct local cultures, outstanding food and wine, and a refreshing al-fresco café culture that is typically laidback. From the chic and fashionable Melbourne to the elegance and sophistication of Adelaide, not to mention Sydney, Hobart or the up-and-coming bustle of Perth.
    Australia facts 
    Location: Australia comprises the mainland of the Australian continent, the island of Tasmania, and numerous smaller islands. It is the largest country in Oceania, and is neighboured by Papua New Guinea, Indonesia and East Timor to the north, the Solomon Islands and Vanuatu to the north-east, and New Zealand to the south-east. 
    Time difference: Canberra has a time zone of GMT + 10 hours. There are several time zones within Australia. 
    Language: English. 
    Population: 24.889 million. 
    Size: 7,692,024 km2, roughly 2,290 miles from north to south and 2,500 miles from east to west. 
    Currency: Australian Dollars (about 1.82 to the pound) 
    Capital: Canberra, located in the Australian Capital Territory between Sydney and Melbourne. 
    Geography and climate 
    Australia’s size results in a variable climate. The expansive interior is hot throughout the year but can often be very cold at night. The southern third of the country enjoys warm summers (December – March) and mild winters (June – August), although there are extremes of this, such as in the Snowy Mountains of New South Wales, where ski resorts are found. The Far North of the country has just two seasons because of its position on the monsoon belt – hot and wet, and hot and dry. 
    Cities and Culture 
    Australia is often thought about in terms of its natural bounty. The mind quickly wanders to images of beaches, landscape, wildlife and weather. Yet modern Australia is also home to a rich tapestry of cultures, and a wonderful array of buzzing urban centres. To the East, the iconic Sydney stands proud in its beautiful Harbour home, where miles of waterways, the Opera House, Harbour Bridge, and a gleaming CBD coincide invitingly. To the West lies pretty and friendly Perth, the most isolated city in the world, located closer to South East Asia than any other Australian city. Here, find a rich and relaxed quality of life, where great food and wonderful scenery are perched on the banks of the Swan River. In the South, fashionable, sporty and arty Melbourne has cemented itself as the centre of the Australian cultural sphere, whilst elegant, sophisticated and green Adelaide boast the country’s best food and wine, and an enviable Mediterranean climate. With so many other exciting destinations on offer, such as the historic and alternative Hobart, or the sparkling CBD and gorgeous sunshine of Brisbane, clients will find exceptional stays in the many cities of this wonderful country. 
    Landscape and Coastline 
    Whilst many minds would simply conjure an image of a beach and a eucalyptus tree, Australia’s landscapes are more varied than one can truly comprehend. From the distinct, dusty red of the outback in Ayers Rock to the tropics of the Daintree Rainforest in the Far North Queensland, from the superb ski resorts of the Snowy Mountains in New South Wales, to the humid plains of Kakadu National Park in the Northern Territory. To the same degree, the coastline of Australia matches this variety. For example, two extensive areas of coral reef are found here; Ningaloo Reef in Western Australia, and the Great Barrier Reef in the North East, each with warm, calm and crystal-clear water. Yet elsewhere, the coastline can take on a decidedly temperate tone, such as is found on the Great Ocean Road of Victoria and South Australia, where striking and jagged limestone cliffs bravely stand to the onslaught of the Southern Ocean. 
    Wildlife and Ecology 
    For nature enthusiasts, Australia offers a pilgrimage unlike any other. Its geographical isolation has resulted in more than 80% of the flowering plants, mammals, reptiles and frogs being unique to Australia, along with most of its fresh water fish, and almost half of its birds. Within this unique list, iconic species are often members of the marsupial family, and these include classic images of Australia such as its friendly and inquisitive kangaroos, koalas, wombats and wallabies. Elsewhere, you may encounter the weird and wonderful animals that are unlike anything found on earth. In the Tropical North of Queensland, for example, the Cassowary is an elusive and beautiful flightless bird which is often seen through the densest patches of rainforest. In freshwater, other guests may be lucky enough to catch a glimpse of a platypus, a wonderful creature that has challenged taxonomies of the natural world for years. With so many more interesting species on offer, from echidnas to crocodiles to emus, wherever you are in Australia, the variety of landscapes will have provided an entirely unique assemblage of species that have captured the imagination of naturalists the world over. 
    Underwater, things are even more interesting still. In the North East of the country, the Great Barrier Reef lies in the shallow, warm and calm waters of the Coral Sea. One of the seven natural wonders of the world, such is the scale of the Barrier Reef that it can clearly be seen from space. Here, 3000 individual reef systems are host to an astonishing variety of coral and reef animals. Yet it is not the only series of coral reefs in Australia. To the North West, one can find the spectacular Ningaloo Reef, a favoured home of pelagic species such as Whale Sharks, Cetaceans and Manta Rays, whilst Lord Howe Island in the South Pacific Ocean contains the southern-most barrier reef found anywhere in the world. Elsewhere in Australia, these warm and tropical waters meet the nutrient richness of the temperate zone, creating a home for a wonderfully vibrant array of species. The crystal-clear waters of Jervis Bay, for example, provide a playground for seal colonies and tropical fish species alike. Again, due to the scale of Australia, a wide variety of marine ecosystems are found which provide a totally unique assemblage of species to explore wherever you may find yourself. 
    Also calling Australia home, however, are of course the snakes, spiders, crocodiles, sharks, jellyfish, blue-ringed octopus and various creepy crawlies that send chills down the spines of many would-be-tourists. In truth, these animals are rarely seen by anyone who isn’t explicitly searching for them, and the majority of trips to Australia are trouble free. Expressions Holidays recommend that clients follow local advice when travelling within Australia, to best avoid incident with potentially dangerous animals. 
    Food and Wine 
    Australia has recently established itself as a great culinary destination, a result of excellent local produce and immigration. ‘Modern Australian’ describes the country’s new cuisine – a blend of east and west. Dishes are generally unfussy, with often bold and interesting flavours. Whilst cuisine does not really alter from region to region, there are some obvious influences such as Southeast Asian in Darwin and Italian in Melbourne. Undoubtedly Australia’s best food is seafood, which is taken from some of the purest waters and usually cooked with great care. Especially prized are Sydney rock oysters, sea scallops from Queensland, fantastic rock lobsters and sweet mud crabs. Meat is also excellent, tender and full flavoured. Very few dishes can be called uniquely Australian but the range of cuisines on offer here span the globe – from Indian and Vietnamese to Fijian and Jamaican – it can all be found in Australia. The size of Australia means that there is some incredible and varied produce on offer – from sublime Tasmanian strawberries to highly prized lamb from the lush Gippsland of Victoria and plentiful mangoes in Queensland. Elsewhere, the ‘bush tucker’ of Aboriginal Australia is on offer to adventurous tourists in the Northern Territory. 
    With vineyards found in every state of Australia, and a total cultivated land mass of 160,000 hectares, Australia’s wine scene has matched the rise of its gastronomic fare. A varied climate, and a history of geographically diverse immigration, have resulted in a full range of wines, from full-bodied Merlot to the scintillating acidity of Sauvignon Blanc. Indeed, a whole suite of regions have become iconic as part of this trend, including the Barossa Valley in South Australia, the Yarra Valley in Victoria, the Hunter Valley in New South Wales, and the Margaret River Valley in Western Australia. Each boasts spectacular rural scenery, and undoubtedly first-class cuisine to match the fruits of the land. 
    Government advice 
    The UK government has an excellent website www.fco.gov.uk which you must use to obtain up-to-date information about worldwide destinations. This site gives details about trouble spots but also general advice about most countries. We advise most strongly that you check notices about your intended destination before you book and travel. 
    Passport and Visas 
    A full British passport is required for travel to Australia. Please bear in mind that it is your responsibility to ensure that your passport is valid and still has six months validity before you book your holiday and it can take some time to obtain a new one. Each individual needs his or her own passport so if you are thinking of taking an infant, allow plenty of time to get a passport. Visas are required for travel to Australia, and the details of this should be checked with the Australian authorities. You may be eligible for an Electronic Travel Authority which can be arranged very quickly on-line. More details from www.eta.immi.gov.au Visas are not required for Hong Kong, Singapore, Thailand, Dubai or Malaysia. Visitors may enter the USA as part of the visa waiver scheme, details of which should be obtained from www.usembassy.org.uk 
    Health 
    There are no required vaccinations for travel to Australia but you should nevertheless always check with your doctor before travelling. A leaflet is available from the Department of Health called ‘Health Advice to Travellers’, by telephoning 0800-555777. If you are suffering from any disability or illness, this should be communicated to us at the time of booking. Please note that pregnant passengers are not accepted by airlines usually after about 28 weeks into the pregnancy. You should check this with us before you make a booking. 
    Insurance 
    It is your own responsibility to ensure that you are adequately insured for your holiday. Please refer to our statement on insurance in our booking conditions. Insurance for the activities you choose to undertake during your holiday is also your own responsibilities. Additional requirements are needed for scuba diving, such as a doctor’s certificate. 
    Security and personal safety 
    When travelling you should take sensible precautions wherever you are and take care of money and personal valuables when passing through crowded and public places and cities in particular. In Australia, you should advise your accommodation when you set out on a long walk, drive, or venture into the wilderness. It is sensible to top up with petrol whenever you are about to leave a town for a long rural drive. 
    Wildlife hazards 
    In Australia, you should heed local advice as far as crocodiles, sharks, spiders, snakes, jellyfish and other species are concerned. Mosquitoes are a fact of life in the tropics. In fact, it is advisable to take your own anti-mosquito creams and lotions with you. Other insects (large beetles, cockroaches, sand flies etc) and some rodents are also common in tropical places. We cannot prevent these creatures from entering your accommodation. If this is a worry, perhaps a holiday to the tropics is not right for you. Guide books available will give you more advice on wildlife hazards. 
    Getting around 
    Main roads in Australia are very good. Some roads are not surfaced, particularly side roads, rural roads and private roads. These often lead to lodge accommodation. 
    What to wear 
    Due to the incredible diversity in climate and landscape, a trip to Australia will require a range of clothing. We advise you check local recommendations. 
    Tipping 
    Tipping us generally expected for many services throughout Australia. Around 10 per cent of the bill is sufficient. This does not apply to your hotel stay.

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