Starting from US on July 23rd,
Fly in to Sydney where we meet our 21 year old daughter, who will have just completed a study-abroad program. Spend 3 days (includes travel time and jet lag recovery), as we have all been to Sydney before, and want to discover other areas of the country
Fly to Melbourne - stay 2 days
Rent a car
Drive the Great Ocean Road - 3 days
Kangaroo Island - 2 days
Adelaide - 3 days (this is where our daughter had been studying - thought she might want to show us around a bit)
Fly to Uluru or Alice Springs - 2 days (worried this isn't enough time). Book a tour here?
Fly to Cairns (Great Barrier Reef) - 4 days.
Rent a car for exploring the area
Fly to Sydney, then home
We realize that much of the trip will be in the cold South, but hope to end the trip on a warmer note before heading back to Washington, DC where it is usually very hot and humid in August. As for our many interests: we like history, nature, scenery, food, culture and moderate hiking. We are torn between staying longer in fewer places and not seeing as much, and the itinerary above. Not sure how much time my husband will agree to be away, but 2 1/2 to 3 weeks is the most I can hope for! As I mentioned, we traveled to Australia 20+ years ago and visited Sydney, Blue Mountains, Lord Howe Island, and Tasmania - loved it all and want to discover more of the country, along with our daughter this time!