Jump to content
Cruise Critic Community
Sign in to follow this  
IRMO12HD

Top End + Bottom End vs. Round Australia

Recommended Posts

I'm hoping for insights or experiences on planning a cruise around Australia in 2021.  My husband had some friends who went on a circumnavigation cruise, and they really enjoyed it.  However, I'd really like to have a chance to explore a bit more, especially on the western side, as I've never been there.  Sooo -- I'm researching stringing together 'top end' and 'bottom end' cruises to see if I can swing a week or so in between.  In the meantime, I'm also trying to schedule around a Trans Pacific cruise on Ovation which departs Yokohama on May 8, 2021 (already booked).  If that doesn't work out, then I'd be looking at Oct/Nov 2021.  

 

I've done some research on available itineraries, and scanned through about 20 pages of topics in this forum, but haven't turned up much in the way of past itineraries that worked, or thoughts for the future, so I'd appreciate reading any comments!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I doubt that you would find a 'top end' and a 'bottom end' with a week or so in between. Princess does 'top end' anti-clockwise, then reverses the direction back to where they started for the second 'top end'. Alternatively they do a 'top end' then a number of cruises out of Fremantle, before returning to the East coast. It would probably be simpler to do an 'around Australia' then fly to Perth or wherever and do some land touring.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Princess hasn't been doing many of those Top End back and forward cruises lately anyway. 

 

The only other alternative would be to hope two cruises on two different cruise lines line up but that's unlikely.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We have done the Top End cruises 5x. We have only cruised a bottom end once mainly because we have cruised from or to Adelaide, Hobart, Melbourne or NZ on other cruises. 

The Top End cruises were all on Royal Caribbean and thoroughly enjoyed each one.

One year we got off in Fremantle, spent time in Perth doing some tours and then embarked onto a HAL ship. The Volendam's itinerary was also great Albany, Esperance, Kangaroo Is etc. Loved it as well even though it was a much older crowd and subdued entertainment.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The first half 2021 Princess circumnavigation is from 21st February to 21st March from Sydney.

The dates for the second half 2021 haven't been released yet but would probably depart Sydney in the last week of October, if they stick to their usual pattern of world cruise followed by Hawaii/Tahiti cruise followed by circumnavigation.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Have a look at Indian Pacific one way, cruise back.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
16 hours ago, IRMO12HD said:

However, I'd really like to have a chance to explore a bit more, especially on the western side, as I've never been there.  Sooo -- I'm researching stringing together 'top end' and 'bottom end' cruises to see if I can swing a week or so in between. 

Our first ever cruise was in 2012 from Sydney to Fremantle and we just loved it so much that we started planning future cruises before disembarking.  There are cruises which circumnavigate the country and there are cruises which do Freo to Sydney and Sydney to Freo however, I doubt you'd find one with a week in between.  Besides just about all you'll get a gander at in a week will be Perth and maybe a train trip to my part of the State, Mandurah.  Not meaning to be rude, but you do realise how bit WA is don't you?  To put it into perspective for you, WA is about 11 times larger than Texas.  If you plan to see the much at all you're gonna need a lot longer than a week.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks, @Bubbeh for your advice.  I do recognize that WA is huge [ironically, that is also my state's abbreviation :-) ), and I wouldn't plan on seeing a whole lot (I appreciate your tip about using the train).  I just thought that it would break up the cruise days a bit (I LOVE cruising; my husband isn't quite as wild about it, so I thought some "land days" might help).  I usually do a TON of research on our travels (before we go), and I haven't done that yet.  What would be some highlights in WA that might be reachable in a day or two from Perth?  I'm sure I'll be back for a land-based extended trip . . .  

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

You must come to Mandurah, we're just a one hour train journey south of Perth (shuttle bus from the train station to the foreshore area) and there is so much to see and do - https://www.getyourguide.com/-l39574/?cmp=ga&campaign_id=6622384787&adgroup_id=80575029044&target_id=aud-308102081692:kwd-34631571289&loc_physical_ms=9070517&match_type=e&ad_id=388157094693&keyword=what to do in mandurah&ad_position=1t1&feed_item_id=&placement=&partner_id=CD951&gclid=EAIaIQobChMIpva0yN7b5QIVRZSPCh31zwFlEAAYASAAEgIJG_D_BwE - if this links works, you can actually see my apartment in the opening picture. 

 

Of course in Perth, there's Kings Park (everybody takes tourists here) which has a great view of the City and Perth Water, the Swan Valley is terrific for wine loves or just life lovers and Fremantle is an iconic historical place.   We've done walking tours all over the world and if that's your thing too, you might like to take a gander at Two Feet and a Hearbeat which do great ones in Perth and Freo - https://www.twofeet.com.au/  , their tours will suit most, as you don't need to be especially energetic.  As they say, to enjoy the tour all you need is two feet and a heartbeat.

 

Irmo, it depends on your interest levels, I'm a bit of history buff but I also love wine and food and smelling the roses while looking at a beautiful view.  So I've basically given you an itinerary that I would enjoy.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Bubbah, you forgot Rotto (Rottnest Island) which is a lovely day trip from Perth, and the quokkas are adorable.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, GUT2407 said:

Have a look at Indian Pacific one way, cruise back.

That's an expensive way to cross the continent. 🙂

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
5 minutes ago, Aus Traveller said:

That's an expensive way to cross the continent. 🙂

 

☺️..........but an experience you will treasure for a lifetime.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I think if they are going to cruise the bottom of Australia as well the train trip cross the Nullabor would be redundant. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

When we spent our days in Perth between cruises, we did a couple of day coach tours as well as making use of the free local bus routes. Kings Park a must.

We did a day tour to Busselton, Margaret River (wine tasting), caves, karri forest and Cape Leeuwin lighthouse. It was a big day but very nice with a delicious dinner provided at a resort on the way back.

Another day we took the river boat from Perth to Fremantle then did a tour of the maritime museum (lots of interesting history of the Batavia pre English settlement of Australia),  goal on a vintage trolley bus and had a delicious seafood lunch on the harbour.

And of course there is Rottnest Island and the ever smiling quokkas.

We stayed at the very quaint Miss Maud’s in Perth, close to the mall. 

Do your research and I believe RC is going to resume their Top End cruises after temporarily abandoning them as well there are bottom ends on relocating cruises. There are Princess, HAL and Cunard that do a top, bottom or all rounders as well.

We did the Indian Pacific train to Adelaide one year. The service, food, tours were exceptional but it was a train and I think our room was over the wheels so we rocked and rolled all night. Would rather fly back home.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The Pinnacle Dessert can be done as an 11 hour day trip from perth - We loved it as I am a camera buff.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

from September to October you can also do one of the Wildflower Tours from Perth.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Wave rock is around 450 kms away from Perth, and then 300 to Margaret River, so if doing a bit of a sojourn around the bottom corner, it may be fit in as well.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
4 hours ago, MicCanberra said:

I think if they are going to cruise the bottom of Australia as well the train trip cross the Nullabor would be redundant. 

After I cruised Sydney to Perth, across the bottom, I didn't cruise for 30 years!  (Most passengers were sick crossing the Bight and nothing on the ship was open until it left Perth.)  However, the return train trip across the Nullabor remains a travel highlight.

A cruise across the top is on my bucket list, although I have flown across from Brisbane with stops at Cairns, Thursday Island, (Alice Springs), Darwin,  Broome to Perth.  

A combination of cruise, train and air might meet your travel needs, as Australia is such a big country, with big distances. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
4 hours ago, MicCanberra said:

Wave rock is around 450 kms away from Perth, and then 300 to Margaret River, so if doing a bit of a sojourn around the bottom corner, it may be fit in as well.

Wave Rock is so underrated, absolutely spectacular.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, MMDown Under said:

After I cruised Sydney to Perth, across the bottom, I didn't cruise for 30 years!  (Most passengers were sick crossing the Bight and nothing on the ship was open until it left Perth.)  However, the return train trip across the Nullabor remains a travel highlight.

A cruise across the top is on my bucket list, although I have flown across from Brisbane with stops at Cairns, Thursday Island, (Alice Springs), Darwin,  Broome to Perth.  

A combination of cruise, train and air might meet your travel needs, as Australia is such a big country, with big distances. 

The bottom end can be rough, but can also be like glass.

Edited by GUT2407

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
37 minutes ago, GUT2407 said:

The bottom end can be rough, but can also be like glass.

I didn't give it another chance, although I've been in rough seas across the Bass Strait and Tasman. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, GUT2407 said:

The bottom end can be rough, but can also be like glass.

I will be praying for the glass Gut.

Cheers Carole

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, GUT2407 said:

Wave Rock is so underrated, absolutely spectacular.

Agreed.  

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
38 minutes ago, MMDown Under said:

I didn't give it another chance, although I've been in rough seas across the Bass Strait and Tasman. 

Rough seas can happen anywhere as can smooth seas.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this  

  • Forum Jump
    • Categories
      • Q&A: Cruise Insurance with Steve Dasseos of TripInsuranceStore.com
      • Forum Assistance
      • New Cruisers
      • Cruise Lines “A – O”
      • Cruise Lines “P – Z”
      • River Cruising
      • ROLL CALLS
      • Digital Photography & Cruise Technology
      • Member Cruise Reviews
      • Special Interest Cruising
      • Cruise Discussion Topics
      • UK Cruising
      • Australia & New Zealand Cruisers
      • North American Homeports
      • Ports of Call
      • Cruise Conversations
×
×
  • Create New...