As we become more experienced cruisers, it is useful to know options for shore excursions are not limited to those offered by your cruise line. Viator offers hundreds shore excursions in top ports of call around the world.
The majority of these are covered by Viator’s worry-free policy of guaranteed on-time return to your ship. In the extremely unlikely event your ship has departed, Viator arranges for transportation to the next port-of-call. If your ship is delayed and you are unable to attend your selected shore excursion, your money will be refunded.
Viator’s three most popular shore excursions in Australia and New Zealand are:
Dunedin’s Taieri Gorge Railway and City Sightseeing: 7.5 hours from $137.61
This train-lovers delight combines a half day journey on an historic wooden train through the magnificent scenery of the Taieri River Gorge with a two hour coach tour of Dunedin’s top city sights. Highlights of the four hour train ride include sweeping views of the steep-sided Gorge, a dozen tunnels and century-old viaducts. Back in the city, see Otago University, the Botanical Gardens, stately homes and other historic buildings, Baldwin Street (the world’s steepest street) St Clair beach, Otago Peninsula & Harbour views before being returned to port in ample time for your ship’s departure.
Banks Peninsula and Christchurch from Akaroa Harbour: 6.5 hours from $80.67
While your ship is in port in Akaroa Harbour, you can visit the nearby city of Christchurch via a scenic drive of the beautiful Banks Peninsula. You’ll coach 1.5 hours into Christchurch through the rolling hills and seascapes of Banks Peninsula to see how the city is emerging from the devastation of the 2011 earthquake and stroll through the city’s beautiful botanic gardens. The tour continues to the beachside suburb of Sumner for lunch (own expense), the historic port of Lyttelton and Christchurch’s hill suburbs for views of the Southern Alps before returning to Akaroa.
Auckland City Sightseeing Tour, Harbour Cruise and Sky Tower: 7 hours from $137.61
See the city from all angles, beginning with a sightseeing tour of the city’s most famous attractions, including Quay Street, the Harbour Bridge and Waitemata Harbour, Queen Street, Auckland University and Auckland Museum, Dominion Parks and Gardens, and the Tamaki Waterfront. Then take to the water for a 90 minute harbour cruise before being transferred to the landmark Sky Tower to see the city from its 328m high observation deck.
Cairns to Green Island by Helicopter and Cruise: 5 hours from $459
Experience the spectacle of the Great Barrier Reef from air and sea on this exciting excursion to Green Island. You’ll be picked up from the cruise port and transferred to the Cairns City Helipad to fly in a helicopter over the Great Barrier Reef before landing at Green Island. Spend the day relaxing by the pool, snorkelling or viewing the coral from a glass-bottom boat on this lovely tropical island, before cruising back to Cairns on board a luxury catamaran.
Melbourne Private City Tour: 4 hours from $79
Visit the highlights of the city on a private 4-hour tour with an expert guide. Your private guide will accompany you to Melbourne’s shopping districts, sports and historic neighbourhoods, and share stories of Melbourne’s vibrant history. As this tour is private, you can choose where to spend most time.
Small group Blue Mountains tour from Sydney: 10 hours from $200
Travel in a customized Mercedes vehicle for a luxurious Blue Mountains experience limited to 14-20 people. Tour the National Park highlights, including Wentworth Falls, Jamison Valley, Echo Point, the Grose River Valley, and the Three Sisters with an experienced local guide with time for short walks. Stop at an Aboriginal cultural centre and have lunch in Katoomba before visiting Featherdale Wildlife Park. From here you’ll board a rivercat to cruise back to Circular Quay.