There’s something truly magical to spend Christmas at sea and even more exciting to celebrate New Year’s Eve in sparkling Sydney, welcoming 2022 in a blaze of fireworks.
You will sit down to a splendid, specially crafted Christmas dinner onboard the intimate, 686-passenger Azamara Journey, sister to Azamara Quest. And when New Year’s Eve approaches, you can don your best party gear, wave goodbye to 2021 and herald in the New Year with the best fireworks display on the harbour.
Your cruise holiday starts in Perth and over 18 nights you will gently sail down the coast of Australia visiting Albany, Esperance, Adelaide, Kangaroo Island, Portland, Eden, Sydney and Melbourne where you can spend a complimentary night in a four-star hotel before flying home.
Imagine Holidays has an exclusive deal where you can save up to $8,500 per couple plus free flights, free hotel in Perth or Melbourne for the 18-night itinerary from Perth to Melbourne departing on 19 December 2021.
Your journey starts at Fremantle where you will board the luxury Azamara Journey, a brand known for its service to ensure that your every need is catered for. You can dine at the upmarket steak and seafood restaurant, Prime C, try Italian cuisine at Aqualina or go for a themed dinner at Windows Café. In between you can play darts, ping pong, shuffleboard, trivia and bingo. There will also be destination talks with experts or you can choose to really unwind with a massage at the ship’s Sanctum Spa. In the evenings, after dinner you can watch a lively show at the Cabaret Lounge.
After a couple of nights at sea, you will arrive at Albany, a charming, historical town with a gorgeous coastline and rolling landscape. Take a walk to Ellen Cove for a spot of whale watching and discover the town’s history by visiting the Albany Courthouse.
The next day, you will arrive at Esperance, famous for its expansive beaches and crystal-clear waters. Try surfing the waves or swim at Twilight Beach and discover the amazing Pink Lake nearby, coloured by the presence of red algae in the water. Sip a cup of coffee at the town’s café to soak in the local atmosphere. You won’t be disappointed.
Your next port of call is Adelaide, the city of churches and capital of South Australia. The handsome city of wide boulevards, diverse architecture and sprawling gardens, is home to Adelaide Central Market where food of various origins is taken very seriously. Walk to the Anglican Holy Trinity Church, Parliament House and explore aboriginal and Melanesian art at the South Australian Museum.
Your ship will then cruise to stunning Kangaroo Island with its spectacular coastline, gorgeous nature reserves, bushland and wildlife. The island is home to native sea lions, koalas, seals and kangaroos, of course. You can go for long bushwalks or feel the sand between your toes in deserted beaches with only seals for company. The island’s gourmet food sold at farm gates and local cafes is where you can taste freshly caught King George Whiting, oysters and a variety of home-grown honey.
As your ship heads to the southwest coast of Victoria, you will visit Portland, home to more than 200 19th century buildings, many of which were made of bluestone. Take the local cable tram along the foreshore which will trundle past the Botanic Gardens. Stop by the Maritime Discovery Centre where you can see a sperm whale skeleton and learn about the town’s maritime history.
Your next port of call is the historic whaling port of Eden on NSW’s Sapphire Coast, renown for its national parks, beautiful beaches, oysters and one of the best spots to watch the migration of humpback whales. The quiet and picturesque town is where you can go fishing, surfing, sailing, diving and bush walking at the coastal wilderness of Ben Boyd National Park.
On New Year’s Eve, the Azamara Journey will arrive at Sydney which will be gearing up for the best fireworks party at the harbour. Before that you can walk through the Botanic Gardens, visit the Museum of Contemporary Art or sip a glass of bubbles at the many cafes around Circular Quay. For the more adventurous, try Bridge Climbing for a once-in-a-lifetime experience or take in a concert at the Sydney Opera House. You will never be bored in vibrant Sydney.
After a day at sea, you will arrive at your final destination, Melbourne where you will spend a complimentary stay with breakfast in a four-star hotel in the city. Go for a walk in cobbled laneways, arcades and pamper yourself with a spot of retail therapy. You can also head to Yarra Valley to savour some of the best Chardonnay, sparkling wines and pinot noir on offer. Melbourne also boasts some of the country’s best restaurants, cafes and coffee shops.