11 days in Great Barrier Reef, Sydney & Christmas Island Itinerary

11 days in Great Barrier Reef, Sydney & Christmas Island Itinerary

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Route & dates

11 days in Great Barrier Reef, Sydney & Christmas Island Itinerary

Start: Los Angeles
Fly:  16​h 45​min
1
Cairns
— 1 day
Drive:  1​h 15​min
2
Port Douglas
— 2 nights
shuttle + Fly:  6​h 45​min
3
Sydney
— 2 nights
Fly:  26​h
4
Christmas Island
— Few hours
Fly:  47​h
End: Los Angeles

1
day
Cairns

A neat, cosmopolitan city of shaded plazas and laid-back neighborhoods, Cairns serves as a popular base for exploration of the surrounding region and the Great Barrier Reef, as well as a center for watersport activities like surfing or waterskiing.
On the 28th (Sat), discover the deep blue sea with a scuba or snorkeling tour.

To find other places to visit, traveler tips, maps, and other tourist information, use the Cairns trip itinerary builder .

New York City, USA to Cairns is an approximately 23.5-hour combination of bus and flight. You can also fly; or do a combination of train and flight. Traveling from New York City to Cairns, you'll lose 15 hours due to the time zone difference. Plan for much warmer temperatures traveling from New York City in December, with highs in Cairns at 88°F and lows at 73°F. Cap off your sightseeing on the 28th (Sat) early enough to go by car to Port Douglas.

Things to do in Cairns

Tours Outdoors Wildlife
Find places to stay Dec 28 — 29:
Highlights from your plan
Scuba & Snorkeling

2
nights
Port Douglas

A holiday in Port Douglas balances an activity-filled getaway with plenty of opportunities to relax, thanks to its proximity to the Great Barrier Reef and bustling beach life.
On the 29th (Sun), see some colorful creatures with a scuba or snorkeling tour. Here are some ideas for day two: see exotic creatures in open habitats at a safari tour.

Plan trip to Port Douglas with our itinerary maker to find out where to go and what to do.

You can drive from Cairns to Port Douglas in 1.5 hours. Alternatively, you can take a bus; or take a shuttle. In December, daytime highs in Port Douglas are 88°F, while nighttime lows are 73°F. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 30th (Mon) to allow time to travel to Sydney.

Things to do in Port Douglas

Tours Outdoors Wildlife
Find places to stay Dec 28 — 30:
Highlights from your plan
Scuba & Snorkeling
Safaris

2
nights
Sydney

Sydney ©
Lent iconic status as a result of its famous bridge and opera house, Sydney has a down-to-earth charm that enhances its spectacular setting and functional efficiency.
We've included these beaches for you: Manly Beach and Bondi Beach. Get outdoors at The Opera House to the Botanic Gardens Walk and Clovelly Beach. There's lots more to do: wander the streets of The Rocks, take in nature's colorful creations at Royal Botanic Garden Sydney, snap pictures at Sydney Harbour Bridge, and observe the fascinating underwater world at Sea Life Sydney Aquarium.

For ratings, photos, other places to visit, and other tourist information, read Sydney online tour itinerary maker .

Traveling by combination of shuttle and flight from Port Douglas to Sydney takes 7 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or do a combination of bus and train. Expect little chillier temperatures when traveling from Port Douglas in December; daily highs in Sydney reach 81°F and lows reach 65°F. Cap off your sightseeing on the 2nd (Thu) early enough to travel to Christmas Island.

Things to do in Sydney

Parks Outdoors Beaches
Find places to stay Dec 30 — Jan 2:
Highlights from your plan
Bondi Beach ©
Bondi Beach
Manly Beach
Manly Beach
Sea Life Sydney Aquarium ©
Sea Life Sydney Aquarium

few
hours
Christmas Island

Christmas Island
The Territory of Christmas Island is an Australian external territory comprising the island of the same name. For reviews and more tourist information, go to the Christmas Island route planner.

The Route module can help you plan travel from Sydney to Christmas Island. Due to the time zone difference, you'll gain 3 hours traveling from Sydney to Christmas Island. In January, daily temperatures in Christmas Island can reach 82°F, while at night they dip to 73°F. You'll set off for home on the 3rd (Fri).

Things to do in Christmas Island

Parks Outdoors Beaches
Find places to stay Jan 3 — 4:

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