17 Nights | Australia
About Auckland, New Zealand
You will visit the following 12 places:
Vanuatu's name is derived from the word vanua ("land" or "home"), which occurs in several Austronesian languages, and the word tu ("stand"). Together the two words indicated the independent status of the new country. Vanuatu is an archipelago Pacific island made up of 80-plus island that stretch 1,300 kilometers. In the 1880s, France and Great Britain claimed parts of the archipelago, and in 1906 they agreed on a framework for jointly managing the archipelago as the New Hebrides through a British–French Condominium. An independence movement arose in the 1970s, and the Republic of Vanuatu was founded in 1980. The islands offer scuba diving at coral reefs, underwater caverns and wrecks such as the WWII-era troopship SS President Coolidge. It takes a little time, effort and a healthy sense of adventure to truly explore Vanuatu's islands, but it's worth every bit of it.
Tauranga is the most populous city in the Bay of Plenty Region of the North Island of New Zealand. It was settled by Māori late in the 13th century and by Europeans in the early 19th century and was constituted as a city in 1963. Tauranga is one of New Zealand's main centres for business, international trade, culture, fashion and horticultural science. The Port of Tauranga is also New Zealand's largest port in terms of gross export tonnage and efficiency. It is one of New Zealand's fastest growing cities, with a 14 percent increase in population between the 2001 census and the 2006 census, though that number has slowed to 11% between the 2006 Census and the 2013 Census.
New Zealand is a country of marvellous and diverse natural beauty: jagged mountains, rolling pasture land, steep fiords, pristine trout-filled lakes, raging rivers, scenic beaches, and active volcanic zones. The country geographically comprises two main landmasses – that of the North Island, or Te Ika-a-Māui, and the South Island, or Te Waipounamu – and numerous smaller islands. The country also often adds an adventure twist to nature: it's the original home of jet-boating through shallow gorges, and bungy jumping off anything high enough to give a thrill.
Fiji, a country in the South Pacific, is an archipelago of more than 300 islands. The country is a vibrant melting pot of cultures, where East Indian, Polynesian, Melanesia, Chinese and European converge to form a unique cultural medley. Featuring sun-drenched beaches, turquoise lagoons, swaying palm trees – Fiji supplies all the classic images of paradise!
Brisbane is the capital and most populous city in the Australian state of Queensland and the third most populous city in Australia. The city central business district stands on the original European settlement and is situated inside a bend of the Brisbane River, about 15 kilometres (9 miles) from its mouth at Moreton Bay. The metropolitan area extends in all directions along the floodplain of the Brisbane River Valley between Moreton Bay and the Great Dividing Range, sprawling across several of Australia's most populous local government areas (LGAs), most centrally the City of Brisbane, which is by far the most populous LGA in the nation. Its positive attitude and creative confidence makes Brisbane a genuine new-world city. Even though the city is rapidly developing and forward-thinking, it maintains a youthful enthusiasm and has what is arguably the most vibrant, laid back and friendliest atmosphere of any east-coast capital city. It is also an energetic river town on the way up, with an edgy arts scene, pumping nightlife, and great coffee and restaurants!
Nouméa is the capital city of the French special collectivity of New Caledonia. It is situated on a peninsula in the south of New Caledonia's main island, Grande Terre, and is home to the majority of the island's European, Polynesian (Wallisians, Futunians, Tahitians), Indonesian, and Vietnamese populations, as well as many Melanesians, Ni-Vanuatu and Kanaks that work in one of the South Pacific's most industrialised cities. The city lies on a protected deepwater harbour which serves as the chief port for New Caledonia. Located on the main island, Grand Terre, it's known for its beaches and its blend of French and native Kanak influences.
Port Vila is the capital and largest city of Vanuatu. Situated on the south coast of the island of Efate, in Shefa Province, the city population at last census (1999) was 29,356, an increase of 55% on the previous census result (1989). This suggests a 2007 population of about 40,000 or around 65% of the province's population. Port Vila is the economic and commercial centre of Vanuatu. The area occupied by Port Vila has been inhabited by Melanesian people for thousands of years. In 1606, the first Europeans arrived at the island, led by Pedro Fernández de Quirós and Luis Váez de Torres.
The Auckland metropolitan area in the North Island of New Zealand, is the largest and most populous urban area in the country with 1,354,900 residents, 31 percent of the country's population. Auckland also has the largest Polynesian population of any city in the world. In Māori Auckland's name is Tāmaki Makaurau, or the transliterated version of Auckland, Ākarana. The 2010 Mercer Quality of Living Survey ranked Auckland 4th equal place in the world on its list, while The Economist's World's Most Livable Cities index of 2010 ranked Auckland in 10th place. In 2008, Auckland was classified as an Alpha World City in the World Cities Study Group’s inventory by Loughborough University.
Urupukapuka Island is the largest island in the Bay of Islands of New Zealand, located about 7.3 km from Paihia. There are many sandy beaches. The waters around the island are clear and diving is particularly good on the east coast where there is plentiful reef life. Indico and Paradise Bays are popular sheltered anchorages and ideal for most forms of water sports. The bays are also inhabited by a colony of shags, and pohutukawas are abundant along the coastline.
Lautoka is the second largest city of Fiji. It is in the west of the island of Viti Levu, 24 kilometres north of Nadi, and is the second port of entry in Fiji, after Suva. Lying in the heart of Fiji's sugar cane growing region, it is known as the Sugar City.
Luganville is the second largest city in Vanuatu. Its population is 13,167. The city is called Santo by people from Vanuatu's northern islands, who use Luganville as their big city. It is called Kanal (from French Second Canal) by rural residents of the large island of Espiritu Santo. The main street that runs through Luganville contains most of the commercial businesses and is very wide as a result of the American base commander insisting that four army tanks could be driven side by side along the road. Small side streets and outlying roads cater for the residential zones. The main street contains the port at one end and the markets and municipal council building at the other end. In the centre there are two main types of stores: tourist boutiques and all-in-one stores (best described as a cross between a supermarket and a hardware store).