Maureen and Paul are both nationally qualified judges in their fields, Maureen in horticulture and photography for Paul. Their award winning 1/3 acre garden in Melbourne, which has been accredited as a Garden for Wildlife has been opened to the public many times including for Australia’s Open Gardens. Maureen is the Garden Writer for The Senior Newspaper in Australia whilst Paul, who has won many awards for his photos, writes articles on photography. They have travelled to every continent on earth and more than 85 countries.VIEW ITINERARY
DAY 1 Saturday 18 September, 2021 Canberra
Tour members will travel to Canberra this morning. The coach will be ready for departure from Canberra airport at 12.00pm. This afternoon we will enjoy a sightseeing tour of the National Capital of Australia, Canberra. Following an international competition, Walter Burley Griffin and Marion Mahony Griffin’s design plans were decided upon for the Australian capital. Construction was started in 1913 using their plans. Canberra faced a lot of difficulties because of the two World Wars and the Depression. After the Second World War, expansion really began. On our tour we will see Parliament House, the War Memorial and more. We will also have a photo stop at the Mount Ainslie Lookout and enjoy scenic views of the city. This evening we will come together for a welcome dinner to formally meet our hosts, Maureen and Paul Lucas. Maureen and Paul will be with us for the whole tour and will use their expertise and experience for any questions that passengers may wish to ask them as we travel around viewing the wonderful included gardens.
DAY 2 Sunday 19 September, 2021 Canberra
Today we will attend Floriade, Australia’s Biggest Celebration of Spring. Hosted in Commonwealth Park for 30 days across September and October, Canberra comes alive with beauty, colour and vibrancy as Floriade celebrates flowers, food and family. Late afternoon we will visit Cockington Green, which displays meticulously crafted miniature buildings set within beautifully landscaped gardens. This evening Paul will give a photographic presentation of some of the magnificent flowers and gardens he and Maureen have seen throughout the world. Many of these photos have won major awards in various photographic competitions. It will include an opportunity for passengers to learn about how to take better photos and to ask questions.
DAY 3 Monday 20 September, 2021 Canberra
This morning we will visit the National Botanic Gardens. The Gardens boast around 75,000 plants from over 6,000 species. That’s nearly a third of Australia’s known native plant species. Most of the plants are grouped by their geographic origin, botanical family or the ways they are used by Indigenous Australians. Rare and endangered plants are also featured. Maureen will point out the most interesting areas to visit. In the afternoon, we visit a highly regarded private garden with a number of garden rooms, a fountain and pool.
DAY 4 Tuesday 21 September, 2021 Canberra
This morning we visit the National Arboretum. Some of the highlights include the Canberra discovery garden, which explores Canberra’s unique climate, soils and geology and the National Bonsai and Penjing collection housing the finest miniature trees in Australia. There will be free time to explore the Arboretum and to have lunch before continuing to visit a private garden created by two very keen gardeners. It is a large garden including many sculptures, which are scattered throughout the garden.
DAY 5 Wednesday 22 September, 2021 Katoomba
We are in for a treat today with a visit to Mayfield Garden, one of the world’s largest privately owned cool climate gardens, extending well over 160 acres. The garden began to take shape in the mid-1990’s the stunning water garden extends over six acres and includes a spectacular stone and water featured garden filled with blue stone walls, man-made water features and carefully selected plants to delight the senses. After our visit we continue our journey to Katoomba.
DAY 6 Thursday 23 September, 2021 Katoomba
Today we will visit Nooroo. Immortalized on a postage stamp, the highest accolade a garden can receive, this garden is a wonderful treasure. The garden was started by William Hay in 1880 and developed by the Valder family over 75 years. As we enter the garden we will see tree ferns about 200 years old wreathed in white wisteria. In September the garden is surrounded by the many colours of spring. We travel down the street to visit Sefton Cottage. The garden is laid out in terraces down a rather steep hill affording views over other parts of the mountain range. The owners, who are lovers of plants, have put all their time and energy into creating a gorgeous garden. We will next visit the Everglades at Leura. This is the grandest example of the work of designer Paul Sorenson. The six hectare garden in the midst of the bush is laid out as a series of terraces, which afford breathtaking views of the Jamieson Valley. The alpine garden looks over terraces of azaleas and rhododendrons.
DAY 7 Friday 24 September, 2021 Katoomba
This morning we travel to the Blue Mountains Botanic Garden at Mount Tomah. This 250 hectare garden is home to a world class collection of plants from the cooler southern hemisphere. The formal garden has three distinct terraces inspired by traditional European garden design. There is a bog garden, a rock garden and a Gondwana walk featuring plants with origins in Gondwana. Maureen will make sure that you get the most out of this inspiring garden. We travel on to Withycombe at Mt Wilson a beautiful and elegant garden. It was begun in 1878 by George Henry Cox and all the original trees are in place. Along the boundaries of the garden area there are great strands of different exotic trees, in gorgeous spring colour at the time of our visit. An elegant and restrained formal garden gives way to park like proportions. This garden was owned for many years by the parents of the author Patrick White.
DAY 8 Saturday 25 September, 2021 Hunter Valley
We travel to the Hunter Valley today for a three night stay. On the journey we will visit Wildwood garden at Bilpin. The garden has a glorious collection of cool climate plants in a natural woodland setting including well placed sculptures. It also boasts a Cherry tree walk, which should be in flower during our visit.
DAY 9 Sunday 26 September, 2021 Hunter Valley
Today we will visit the Hunter Valley Gardens. The Gardens were opened in 2003 by Bill and Imelda Roche who spent over four years building the site with a dedicated team of over 40 landscape gardeners, architects and engineers. There are eight kilometres of walking paths winding through 14 hectares of gardens consisting of over 6,000 trees, 600,000 shrubs and over 1 million ground cover plants, plus waterfalls, statues, murals and much more. This is an enormous garden and impossible in the time we would have available to walk the whole lot, so we will travel on the little train that travels throughout the garden. After the train trip you may explore several of the 10 themed gardens, such as the rose garden, Chinese garden and Italian Grotto. After our garden visit, there is time for you to explore the Garden Shopping Village. The village hosts a unique collection of bespoke shops offering everything from delicious meals, lunchtime treats, coffee and wine to stunning glassware, jewellery and unique clothing.
DAY 10 Monday 27 September, 2021 Hunter Valley
This morning we will visit the Hunter Valley Botanic Garden. Preserved as natural bushland this garden has displays that are constantly changing. The displays are developed for recreational, educational and scientific purposes. The orchid house is very popular with visitors. We return to the Hunter Valley to enjoy lunch at a winery.
DAY 11 Tuesday 28 September, 2021 Sydney
We travel south towards Sydney today. We visit Edogawa Commemorative garden at Gosford. This peaceful space was designed in accordance with the principals of the Japanese, Hein period 700 AD. It is based on a traditional strolling style, incorporating Japanese features. I am sure you will enjoy this gorgeous garden.
DAY 12 Wednesday 29 September, 2021 Sydney
This morning we will visit the Lisgar Gardens in Hornsby. The gardens are set in a gully full of rich native bush land dominated by Sydney blue gums and are terraced down a steep slope with a dry stone wall of sandstone. There is an area of formal lawn with structured garden beds and an informal bush land area with walking trails. There are a number of waterfalls and other water features and gorgeous stone work in the garden. We continue with a visit to Eden Garden Centre. It is a fascinating place with water dragons everywhere and lots to see and buy. There will be time at the garden centre for lunch. The remainder of the afternoon will be free for individual activity. This evening we enjoy a farewell dinner to celebrate the end of our wonderful tour.
DAY 13 Thursday 30 September, 2021 Departure
This morning we will visit Wendy Whiteley’s Secret Garden. After her husband Brett’s death in 1992 Wendy started clearing the rubbish in the unused railway land in front of her house. She had no idea what she would find, but beneath the rubble there were large Moreton Bay Figs, bamboo and other plants used as the bones for the garden she has created today. Early afternoon we are transferred to Sydney Airport for flights back home. Please don’t book a flight that departs before 2.00pm.
|TWIN FARE PER PERSON||SINGLE FARE|
Tour deposit fully refundable up to 45 days prior to departure
Flights to Canberra and return from Sydney are not included. You must arrive in Canberra by 12.00pm and depart Sydney after 2.00pm. Please speak with one of our friendly consultants for a quote
Touring can involve a considerable amount of walking and stair climbing in the places visited and it is important that all tour participants have a level of physical fitness that allows them to take part in this tour without the need of assistance from others.
Tour Operator: Travelrite International Pty Ltd. (ABN 64 005 817 078) (Travelrite) is the tour operator.
Tour Costs: The tour costs are based on general transport and accommodation rates at 15 May 2020. Travelrite reserves the right to alter the costs if any of these factors change, giving any passenger that has booked the right to withdraw with full refund of monies paid or modify arrangements. No alterations to price will be made within 60 days of departure.
Deposit and Payment: A deposit of $600 per passenger should be sent with a completed Travelrite International booking form. Final payments are due to be paid to Travelrite International 45 days prior to the commencement of the tour. A 1.5% administration fee will be added to payments by credit card.
Cancellation Charges: * Cancellation conditions don’t apply for clients with future cruise/tour credits. Cruise/tour credits are non-refundable. Cancellations received in writing 45 or more days from the date of departure will result in deposit being refunded. Cancellations received 44 or fewer days before departure will result in a loss of all monies paid.
Adequate travel insurance is highly recommended to cover tour members for the consequences of unforeseen events during the tour and for cancellation fees which could result from events such as illness, accident, death etc.
Minimum Tour Numbers and Conditions:
The tour has been priced on the basis of a minimum number of passengers having booked 45 days prior to departure. Travelrite reserves the right to cancel the tour, giving a full refund of all monies paid or offer arrangements to proceed with the tour at a modified cost.
The tour is based on arrangements that do not allow for any refunds in respect to sightseeing, accommodation, meals, airfare or other services not utilized after the tour has commenced.
Due to coach restrictions, tour members can only bring one large suitcase.
Children under 5 years of age are ineligible on coach & cruise tours. Children under 18 years of age must be accompanied by an adult. Passengers with disabilities are welcome on Travelrite & Cruise Offers tours provided they are accompanied by a companion capable of providing all necessary assistance, and do not require special assistance from Travelrite & Cruise Offers personnel. Travelrite and Cruise Offers reserves the right to refuse to carry anyone if it is felt the individual cannot cope with the requirements of coach & cruise tour travel and who may require services and facilities that Travelrite & Cruise Offers cannot guarantee will be available. You agree to not hold the Travelrite & Cruise Offers responsible for any decision made by any of them or any service provider to refuse to carry you, provide any facilities or accommodation to you or to provide any service to you.
Responsibilities: Travelrite International Pty Ltd. (ABN 64 005 817 078) is the tour organizer. Travelrite acts only as an agent in the making of arrangements for hotels, transportation, restaurants or any other service and does not assume any liability whatsoever for any injury, damage, death, loss, accident or delay to person or property due to an act of negligence or a default of any hotel, carrier restaurant company or person rendering any services included in the tour, or by act of God. Further no responsibilities are accepted for any damage or delay due to sickness, pilferage, labour disputes, machinery break-down, quarantine, government restraints, weather, terrorism or other causes beyond their control. No responsibility is accepted for any additional expense, omission, delays, re-routing or acts of any government authority. The passage contract between the carriers concerned, when issued, shall constitute the sole contract between the carriers and the purchasers of this tour and/or the passengers. The right is reserved to withdraw any tour and/or make such changes in the tour as may be found desirable or necessary for the convenience of the parties and the proper carrying out of the tour. This contract shall be construed in accordance of the laws of the State of Victoria, Australia and any legal action must be undertaken in the State of VictoriaDelays and unforseen events: You engage Travelrite International to book this tour on your behalf and you acknowledge that Travelrite International acts as your agent for the purpose of making contracts between you and the various providers of accommodation, transportation and other services that comprise the tour. Travelrite International may without reference to you provide or make available to you, or may as your agent engage any third party to provide or make available to you, any good or service which Travelrite International reasonably believes is necessary for your benefit to maintain the tour itinerary, repatriate you or otherwise accommodate, transport or sustain you in circumstances in which the tour itinerary fails wholly or partly for any reason. You appoint Travelrite International your attorney for this purpose. You agree to pay Travelrite International any cost thereof and you indemnify Travelrite International in respect of any cost it incurs in this regard. Travelrite advises you to obtain travel insurance generally including in respect of the risk that any such good or service may become required.
How to Book: Bookings can be made by sending full names and addresses of intending tour members with a deposit of $600 for the Garden Tour. Please send to:
Travelrite International Pty Ltd
423 Whitehorse Road Balwyn, Victoria 3103
Further information or a booking form can be obtained by telephoning Travelrite International on the following numbers:
About Travelrite International: Travelrite International Pty Ltd (ABN 64 005 817 078) is a well-established family-owned business that’s been operating in Melbourne’s eastern suburbs for more than 35 years. Travelrite International is a full member of the Australian Federation of Travel Agents (AFTA), is fully Accredited with ATAS (A10538) and IATA. As such they directly represent the major airlines of the world and all major domestic and international hotel, tour and transport operators.
“The whole tour was wonderful and the group was a good mix of personality. The gardens visited were interesting and varied.”
“Very enjoyable. Good mix of people in the group.”