TRAVEL THE WORLD THE JEWISH WAY
TRAVEL THE WORLD THE JEWISH WAY

Cruise & Tour Australia & New Zealand

17 days

Preview

The southern half of our planet is covered with water. Over ninety percent. The southeastern part of the hemisphere is home two fascinating continents, Australia and New Zealand. The best way to visit them both is by sea. And if by sea, then only by luxury cruise liner. There is no need to exchange hotels, while indulging in life’s pleasures, sailing, relaxing and enjoying every moment. We’ll be aboard a luxury cruise liner belonging to one of the world’s leading companies, “Holland America”.

Europeans discovered Australia in the seventeenth century. After the British lost the colonies in North America it was only natural for them to seek compensation in return, the new continent. An Empire Crown Colony. This was a land of exile, to which the British expelled its prisoners. But gradually became a flourishing state. Most of the population of Australia is originally of European descent, and only a small minority – about two percent – are inhabitants from ancient times, aboriginals.

Australia’s wealth puts it at near top of the global economy, particularly in the commodities market. It’s the second largest producer of gold, the third largest producer of nickel and fifth in copper production. It is also the world’s largest exporter of iron ore. Another fascinating Australia treasure: it is the world’s main habitat of the pouch mammals, aka the Kangaroo. After a short gestation the tiny newborns crawl immediately into mother’s pouch where they will continue to evolve until they’re on their way to independence.

New Zealand is located almost two thousand miles from Australia, and is also a former British Crown Colony. New Zealand is a fascinating grouping of two large and countless small islands that contain lofty mountain and cavernous valleys, verdant green meadows and incredible landscapes, abundant rainforests, mighty sand dunes, luxurious hot springs and grand icy glaciers. And more sheep per capita than any other country in the world.

Itinerary

Days 1-2, Sunday & Monday December 31, 2017 – January 1, 2018: Home gateway to Sydney
Departure from home gateway and flight to Sydney, Australia. Upon arrival we’ll head out immediately to discover this spectacular city. We’ll get to some of the best lookout points to view Harbor Bridge and Sydney’s famous Opera House. We’ll stroll on Bondi Beach, with its white sand, rocks and botanical gardens. And these are just some of our initial sights and sites. We’ll take the ferry to Manley and then cross the Bay Bridge. In the evening we’ll stroll about Darling Bay and soak in some of Sydney’s nightlife.

Day 3, Tuesday January 2, 2018: Sydney, the Blue Mountains, Melbourne
This morning we’ll set out for a magnificent day in the Blue Mountains. This is a beautiful reserve with magnificent forests of eucalyptus. Its name – “Blue Mountains” – comes from the thin blue fog that seems to pervade the area, thought by some to come from a reflection of light on the vapor of the Eucalyptus leaves. The forests are gigantic and they include tens of varieties of eucalyptus trees. We’ll visit a zoo that houses some animals that are typical of Australia: Wallabies, Kangaroos and Koala Bears. A selfie with any – or all – of these is in order! At the end of the day we’ll return to Sydney Airport for our flight to Melbourne.

Day 4, Wednesday January 3, 2018: Melbourne, Philip Island
After breakfast we’ll head out to explore the green city, which lies on the banks of the Brown Yarra River. We’ll visit the city center and the train station, the National Museum and the monument to the Australian and New Zealand soldiers who died in the service of their countries. In the evening we’ll go out to Philip Island, renowned for the “Penguin Parade,” when the penguins come ashore every evening after sunset.

Day 5, Thursday January 4, 2018: Melbourne, Philip Island
Today we’ll travel the Great Ocean Road and beyond for one of the world’s most scenic coastal drives, and see the 12 Apostles, iconic surf breaks, waterfalls and Otway’s Rainforest. In the evening we’ll fly back to Sydney where we’ll spend the night.

Day 6, Friday January 5, 2018: Sydney – All Aboard!
In the morning we will have more time to enjoy the city and at noon we drive to the Harbor and board our luxurious Holland America Cruise Ship MS Noordam and settle-in for an unforgettable voyage and prepare for Shabbat.

Ship: Ms. Noordam

Facilities
Our meals are Glatt Kosher provided by Webermans Traditional Foods

Health and Fitness
* 3 pools – Sea View pool, Lido pool, Oasis pool * 3 Jacuzzis * Gym * Greenhouse Spa * Aerobics studio * Beauty salon * Thermal suite * Basketball court * Practice tennis court * Lower Promenade deck walk

Entertainment
* Van Gogh theater * Casino Crow’s Nest lounge/nightclub * Explorations library/internet cafe * Explorer’s lounge * Culinary Arts center * Neptune lounge * Hudson card room * Club HAL kids club * Club HAL games room * The Loft teens club * The Oasis teens deck

Other Facilities
* Shopping arcade * Art gallery * Launderette * Half Moon meeting room * Medical center

Days 7-8, Shabbat & Sunday, January 6-7, 2018: At Sea
After Shabbat morning services and our Shabbat meal we will enjoy some interesting lectures, shiurim and divrei Torah. Everyone is invited to share their knowledge with the rest of the group. These days also give us an opportunity to really discover all the pleasures and wonders that the ship has to offer.

Day 9, Monday January 8, 2018: Milford Sound
Nothing can prepare anyone for the majesty of Milford Sound, the star of Fjordlands National Park. The steep and towering mountain walls of the fjords enable the ship to sail very close to the rock face. This enables us to enjoy the refreshing spray of the massive waterfalls that plunge into the sea all along the fjords.

Day 10, Tuesday January 9, 2018: Port Chalmers, Dunedin, Otago Peninsula
Dunedin’s scenic beauty and beautiful architecture is ours to discover during a panoramic introduction to the city. We depart the pier and enjoy the 10-mile drive along the eastern shoreline of Otago Harbor en route to Dunedin, whose Gaelic name means Little Edinburgh. Founded by Scottish settlers in 1848, this charming city features a wealth of Victorian and Edwardian buildings, richly festooned with spires, gables and gargoyles. Pass Baldwin Street, the steepest residential street in the world, before climbing Signal Hill for spectacular views across Dunedin and Otago Peninsula. Next, we’ll proceed down through the city, where we’ll view town highlights such as the Botanical Gardens, Otago Museum and the Dunedin Railway Station. In the city center, at the Octagon, we’ll admire St Paul’s Cathedral and the Dunedin Town Hall before returning to Port Chalmers.

Day 11, Wednesday January 10, 2018: Akaroa, Christchurch
Today we’ll anchor at Akaroa, not far from Christchurch, the largest city on New Zealand’s southern island, and capital of Canterbury County. Christchurch is the launching pad for delegations heading toward Antarctica. Thus, we’ll visit the International Antarctic Center, and travel in one of the vehicles that are used there on our way to watch a 3-D movie about our planet’s southernmost continent, in a theater at a temperature of minus 8 degrees Celsius. We’ll meet some of the animals who live and thrive in that type of environment. We’ll discover how the area has been researched and mapped, and how global warming effects the issue of icebergs that have begun to roam. Afterwards we’ll visit the center of Christchurch, which was devastated by an earthquake in 2011. Depending on the weather we may take the cable car to a panoramic lookout over the city, or sail along the Avon River in special boats.

Day 12, Thursday January 11, 2018: Picton, Blenheim
Picton is a town in the Marlborough region of New Zealand. It is close to the head of Queen Charlotte Sound near the north-east corner of the South Island. The town is named after Sir Thomas Picton, the Welsh military associate of the Duke of Wellington, who was killed at the Battle of Waterloo. Picton is perfect in every way: climate, scenery, and outdoor adventure. Gateway to the largest grape-growing and wine-producing region of New Zealand. There’s a lovely, busy day awaiting us!

Day 13, Friday January 12, 2018: Wellington
Today we’ll anchor in Wellington, Capital of New Zealand, and the second largest city in the country (after Auckland). Wellington is a vibrant and cosmopolitan city that’s located at the bottom tip of the top island. We’ll climb to the botanical gardens via cable car to the botanical gardens to see some amazing floral exhibitions, preserved forests, collections of unusual and unique plants as well as a marvelous panorama of Wellington City. From there we’ll go to visit New Zealand’s Parliament as well as “Te Papa Tongarewa”, the National Museum. The Museum is rich in multiple exhibitions, some of them interactive, dealing with New Zealand’s history and geography, nature and Maori culture. We’ll continue to Wellington’s attractive seaside promenade before returning to the ship to prepare for Shabbat.

Day 14, Shabbat January 13, 2018: Napier – Aboard Ship
After Shabbat morning services and our Shabbat meal we will enjoy some interesting lectures, shiurim and divrei Torah. Everyone is invited to share their knowledge with the rest of the group. These days also give us an opportunity to really discover all the pleasures and wonders that the ship has to offer.

Day 15, Sunday January 14, 2018: Tauranga, Rotorua
Today we dock at Tauranga, from where we’ll travel to visit Rotorua, also known as “Sulphur City. It’s located in an area that has an abundance of geothermal activity. We’ll tour Wai-O-Tapu Thermal Wonderland, a preserve of geothermal activity that has made this area and the Maori village, Te Puia, adjacent to it famous. In this geothermal reserve, we will see hot bubbling mud and eruptions of geysers. The land here moves and bubbles and boils and steams. The people of the Te Arawa came to New Zealand in the middle of the 14th century from the birthplace of the Maori, Hawaiki and settled in Rotorua. Nowadays the Maori people are preserving their ancient cultural language and heritage and they’re delighted to share it at every opportunity with guests – together with their wonderful warmth and good humor.

Day 16, Monday January 15, 2018: Auckland : at sea
Today, we disembark from our luxury cruise liner, our floating hotel for the last two weeks, and we’ll spend the day visiting Auckland. The “City of Sails” has a population of 1.5 million inhabitants, and is New Zealand’s largest city. We’ll visit Auckland Museum and the botanical gardens, climb to the top of the Sky Tower, the tallest building in the country and in the entire southern hemisphere (328 meters), from where we’ll view the entire city and its surroundings. We’ll continue to visit the local Jewish Community, the synagogue, the kosher store, and learn about their history.

Day 17, Tuesday January 16, 2018: Auckland, Waitomo Caves
Our visit to Australia and New Zealand comes to an end today. It has been truly amazing and memorable. We’ll travel to the airport in Auckland and from there we fly back to our home gateway, laden with unforgettable experiences, and the desire to answer the best question of all: Where will we go next?

 

Dates & Prices
Tour Code Departure Return  
PAUN17/1 12/31/2017 01/16/2018 Book this tour
Tour Code Departure date Air + Land * Land only * Single Room**
PAUN17/1 12/31/2017 8200 $ 5980 $

* Price per person in USD Iin double or twin room.

** Supplement for single room.

* Price of tour is subject to due to change in Air Fare.

Need to Know

Price Includes:

  • Air-conditioned tourist coach
  • Kosher half board & supplies for making sandwiches for lunch
  • Glatt Kosher full board during the cruise provided by Webermans Traditional Foods
  • English-speaking local guides and a professional experienced guide from the staff of Shai Bar Ilan
  • Entrance to all sites mentioned in the itinerary
  • first class hotels throughout
  • Tips for local service providers

Price Excludes:

  • International flights
  • Visa fee (approx $230) if applicable
  • Personal expenses and services
  • Insurance
  • Tips during the cruise $155 per person
  • Tip for guide (Recommended: $5 per person per day)

Important to Know:

  • Very Important: The Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry located at Australian and New Zealand Customs is very strict. They employ a variety of technologies as well as trained dogs to seek out any type of food hidden in suitcases. Both countries forbid the import of any such items, including fruit (dried fruit too), vegetables (ditto), fish (fresh, cooked, canned), any type opf meat (ditto), milk products, plants, seeds, nuts, herbs, etc. Anyone caught trying to smuggle such items into the country will be deported immediately back to his/her point of departure. If nevertheless, you have chosen to bring these forbidden items with you, make sure to declare them upon arrival. For further information see: www.protectnz.org.nz
  • There may be changes to the order of places visited. We will make every effort to visit every place mentioned in the itinerary.
  • The tour organizers have no control over airline services such as seating, special meal requests, changes in departure times or delays. These remain the sole responsibility of the airline company.

Kashrut on Tours

Only strictly kosher food is provided to our travelers on all our tours. On some of our tours we are able to provide glatt meals. Kashrut is of utmost importance to us and we take special measures to ensure that everything served is kosher.

The meals:
Breakfast is prepared using our utensils. We use local fresh fruits and vegetables, and we use milk products when they are permitted. We use kosher cereals, and bread. We usually serve hard boiled eggs and sometimes scrambled eggs or omelets. At breakfast, we prepare our lunches so that people have their choice as to what they eat for lunch. We bring food from Israel to supplement what is served in the hotel such as cheeses, peanut butter, tuna, etc.
For dinners, we serve either fish or meat (usually chicken) as our main course. In areas where meat is not available nor readily acquired, we will have fish. When possible, we acquire the meat locally from Chabad or other reliable kosher source, and in some cases we fly the meat in from Israel. We try to provide as many meat meals as possible. The main course at dinner is preceded by soup and salad and accompanied by freshly prepared vegetables. Dessert typically consists of fresh fruits.
We do not guarantee Pat Israel and Chalav Israel for all destinations.
In many destinations we have our own dishes and silverware. Where we don’t, we provide disposables at the meals. When we cook in hotel kitchens, we use our own knives, cutting boards, pots and pans, cooking implements and disposable metal trays. All food preparation is done on covered surfaces under the strict supervision of our trained staff/guides who function as our mashgichim.

We make great efforts to assure that our travelers will experience local foods first-hand, while maintaining stringent observance of Kashrut laws on all occasions.

On most of our tours, you will be accompanied by two of our staff members- one a guide for the tour who is knowledgeable about the places you are visiting and will accompany you throughout the day and the second, a person who will deal with the logistics of the tour and provide kashrut supervision in the kitchen.

Hotels:
It is our aim to provide the finest hotel possible in each area we visit. We require our hotels to allow us to work in the kitchen and to supervise the cooking and there are many hotels that are not willing to cooperate. They simply have no desire for us to be “meddling” in their cooking process nor are they happy about our bringing our equipment into their kitchens. We work very hard to find the best hotel in the area that will meet our requirements. Because we are not ready to compromise on kashrut, we may not always be able to use a five star hotel.

Deposit, Cancellation Fees & Policy:

A $500 USD Deposit per person must be received at the time of booking in order to confirm your reservation. Payment in full is due 60 days before departure. A minimum number of participants are required to operate tour dates. If a minimum number has not been reached prior to tour departure and the tour is cancelled you will receive a FULL refund.
• 90 days before departure bookings are refundable less a $100 administration fee
• 60-90 days prior to departure: $300 + $100 per passenger
• 60-30 days prior to departure: $500 + $100 per passenger
• Less than 30 working days prior to departure: 100% of total – no refund

We strongly recommend purchasing Travel Insurance

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