Winter 2017

Australia & New Zealand

Sydney, Australia

Cairns, Australia

Brisbane, Australia

The Great Barrier Reef

Alice Springs, Australia

Uluru, Australia

Melbourne, Australia

Auckland, New Zealand

Rotorua, New Zealand

Wellington, New Zealand

Christchurch, New Zealand

Queenstown, New Zealand

New Milford Sound, New Zealand

Australia & New Zealand

We took over 12 people in 2018 and we’re offering it again: Australia & New Zealand. For those of you who want an experience that’s totally out of this world and to come back with stories to impress, this one’s the trip. So embark on a dream trip of a lifetime in Sydney before heading off to visit the Great Barrier Reef at Cairns. Then it’s off to see the enigmatic Ayers Rock (aka “Uluru”) in Alice Springs to finish off your week in Australia.

For week 2 you can begin north in Auckland, New Zealand from where you’ll take a quintessential road trip southwards, visiting Rotorua, Wellington, Christchurch and Queenstown along the way. Then we cap off 2 epic weeks with a visit to one of the most photogenic and beautiful places on the planet: Milford Sound.



  • Day 1-3 Sydney, Australia
  • Day 3-6: Cairns, Australia & The Great Barrier Reef
  • Day 6-7: Brisbane, Australia
  • Day 7-8: Uluru
  • Day 8-9: Melbourne, Australia
  • Day 9-11: Auckland, New Zealand
  • Day 11-12: Rotorua, New Zealand
  • Day 12-13: Wellington, New Zealand
  • Day 13-14: Christchurch, New Zealand
  • Day 14-15: Queenstown, New Zealand
  • Day 16: Milford Sound
  • Day 17: Queenstown, New Zealand

How do I pay? A 40% down payment is needed to secure your spot on the trip. We accept credit cards, cash (in person), mailed check, PayPal, Chase Quickpay, Square Cash, or Venmo.

What if I have dietary restrictions?

Let us know if you have any dietary restrictions beforehand and we can totally accommodate.

What are accommodations like?

Boutique, top-end hostels, or boutique hotels all with running hot water, good people, and great amenities.

What days should I book my flights to arrive?

Depends on what part of the trip you sign up for; please confirm with Calvin directly before purchasing tickets!

Do you provide flight advice/support to get the cheapest flights?

Yep! We boast expertise in this area and would be happy to assist you in booking the cheapest flights, finding hack fares, or work with loyalty mile programs to getting you free economy, business class, or first class flights.

I’d love to come, but I’m limited on budget.

Contact us anyway and we can come up with a deal or financial aid packages.

Can I come alone?

Yes, many of our monsooners have joined our trip by themselves and end up meeting a whole new group of friends. We usually attract people who come from a range of backgrounds and have different levels of experience with travel.

What if I don’t usually like traveling with people?

Our trips are designed by independent travelers with independent travel in mind — we want to provide everyone with the opportunity and experience of traveling alone should they choose to. Therefore, there’s zero pressure to stick with the group anytime.

So if you want to venture off to a museum or try a different restaurant, by all means: Do it! The group will only be expected to stay together for transportation between cities.

Will you accommodate food restrictions (vegetarian, vegan, kosher, halal, cardiac, diabetic, lactose intolerant, peanut allergies, etc.)?

Of course. Just tell us ahead of time when you sign up and we can make accommodations easily.

Do I need visas?

Depends on your nationality and type of passport. People with USA and EU nationalities do not need visas. Otherwise, we can help you with this if you need any visas. Please ask!

Will someone provide me with a list of tasks I need to complete for visas or pre-entry credentials

Yes, of course!

Do I need travel insurance?

Up to you! Some credit cards already include some sort of travel insurance (check with them). We tend to find the cheapest ones at:

Terms and Conditions between The Monsoon Diaries LLC, henceforth called “MD,” and the customer, henceforth called the “customer.” Booking a tour with MD acknowledges customer understanding and agreement to the following terms and conditions. BOOKING POLICY

  • A 40% deposit is due upon booking confirmation and is non-refundable. The balance of payment is due 4 weeks before the tour commences. Following receipt of deposit customer is required to send relevant details for issuing of relevant permits.
  • Failure to send true and correct information may result in refusal of visa, or permit, and thus results in forfeit of deposit.
  • Should visa, or permit be refused through no fault of the customer, the customer shall receive a full refund minus associated banking costs.
  • In the event of personal injury, or bereavement that prevents the customer taking part on the tour, MD reserve the right to increase the deposit minus associated fees.

CANCELLATION POLICY All cancellation notices must be received in writing and will become effective as of the date of receipt by MD. Tour refunds will be given according to the table below.

  • 8 weeks (60 days) prior to the tour customers receive a 100% refund, minus associated and unrefundable costs.
  • 15 – 60 days prior to the tour customers receive a 50% refund, minus associated and unrefundable costs.
  • 8-14 days prior to the tour customers to receive a 10% refund, minus associated and unrefundable costs.
  • Cancellations received on the day of or within 1 week of departure are non-refundable

Note: With all refunds the company shall not be held liable for any bank, and or associated fees linked to transferring refund, with sole responsibility being borne by the customer.

  • MD may change these Terms & and Conditions at any time. MD will notify customers if changes to the booking terms and conditions are made.
  • It is the responsibility of all customers, regardless of nationality and destination, to check with the consulate of the country they are visiting for current entry requirements. As visa and health requirements are subject to change with-out notice, we recommend that you verify health and visa requirements with the appropriate consulate prior to departure.
  • Price quotations are subject to change without notice, until a booking has been confirmed.
  • MD fully reserves the right to change or amend all itineraries on a case by case basis depending on the situation on the ground. MD will always provide a suitable replacement for anything cancelled on an itinerary.
  • Train, and flight tickets are subject to availability. MD reserve the right to change the mode of transport depending on availability.
  • If for any reason, a client does not complete any portion of their tour or abandons their scheduled tour after departure, MD will not grant a partial refund, nor shall there be any credit given towards future travel.


As with all travel there is always a minor chance that a visa will be refused. MD has an excellent track record for visas with a relatively insignificant amount having ever been turned down and all were with good reason. If the customer has provided accurate information to us and their visa is refused and refunded, MD will in turn grant a full refund of any payments made to MD minus associated transfer fees and costs but will not be held responsible for any costs incurred by the customer in traveling to Beijing, Kuala Lumpur or any other location from which their tour was scheduled to depart. In the event you have intentionally misled us in an attempt to enter a country, we will retain your deposit.


In the event of an uncontrollable event, such as war, revolution, and or natural disaster, the customer shall be entitled to a full refund. What constitutes force majeure is decided solely by the company. Note: With all refunds the company shall not be held liable for any bank, and or associated fees linked to transferring refund, with sole responsibility being borne by the customer.


Medical treatment in many destinations is not free, and it is strongly recommended that the customer take out their own travel insurance, AND check with the issuer whether it is valid in the country of the tour. MD does not provide, nor imply provision of health/travel insurance.


  • Customers are required to follow local laws and regulations at all times. In the result of a breach of local law, MD will not be held in any way responsible and the customer will take responsibility for any consequences, financial or otherwise, that arise from their actions.
  • Customers are required to follow the guidance and company rules of MD at all times. MD reserves the right to expel customers from the tour who do not follow company rules, without refund.


Due to the nature of travel/tourism of certain countries, itineraries do not provide or imply a guarantee of the tour’s contents. Though we will make every effort to keep itineraries as described and to find suitable replacements, the company reserves the right to make changes to the itinerary in response to unforeseeable events.


MD reserves the right in extreme cases to refuse service to anyone we deem unsuitable for one of our tours, in the event that MD deems you unsuitable prior to a tour any payment made to MD will be refunded minus associated transfer costs.


In the event the customer intends to travel to and from a country using a transit visa they bear full responsibility for ensuring the transit visa is organized correctly. MD will of course offer assistance in the event of issues arising with customer’s transit, but will in no case be held liable for any costs incurred in arranging customer exits.

Group A: Australia

December 30th - January 8th
  • Sydney, The Great Barrier Reef, Brisbane, Melbourne, and Uluru!

Group B: New Zealand

January 8th-16th
  • Auckland, Rotorua, Wellington, Christchurch, Queenstown, and Milford Sound!

Price inclusive of:

  • All Transportation AND flights in the region
  • All Accommodation
  • Listed itinerary
  • Excursion to Milford Sound
  • Visa guidance
  • Guide fees

Price exclusive of:

  • International Flights to begin and end the trip
  • Food/drink
  • Personal expenses/souvenirs
  • Personal/Optional cab rides, public transportation, and/or Uber rides
  • Optional activities/day-tours/excursions/scuba dives
  • Travel insurance
  • Visa application process & fees

Our Previously Organized Independent Tours


“Even though we’ve only known each other for a little while, I’m so proud of you for doing what you do and touching so many lives around you! You continue to be an inspiration, and I truly feel honored to connect with you as a friend. Sending love, always!!” – Alexandra De Rosa

“I’ve traveled with The Monsoon Diaries to 21 countries in the past year and every time is an amazing experience. I’m always challenged to grow as a person and the people I’ve met through these trips have become some of my best friends. If it wasn’t for Calvin and my fellow monsooners, I wouldn’t have taken the leap to spend the past six months of my life backpacking around the world which proved to be one of the best decisions of my life. I will always be grateful for this incredible community and I cannot wait for the next trip, whenever and wherever it may be.” – Taylan Stulting

“When you’re back to reality and suffering from PTD (post travel depression), so you’re looking through your pictures reminiscing… at 12 AM. I feel so blessed and grateful of the beautiful moments I got to experience during the last 3 weeks. I met and made friends with so many wonderful people on this journey.”  – Laura Bodden

“Safe travels. It’s been real . Thanks again for putting this together and bringing us on the trip of a lifetime . Will miss you all, my family of strangers ‍‍‍‍‍‍‍‍‍‍‍‍‍‍‍‍‍‍‍‍‍‍❤❤❤❤❤.” – Mary Lin

“Signed up for a 9 day adventure with a group of 7 strangers, trusting the entire itinerary with someone I met for 5 minutes, 5 years ago.  Everything about that is the complete opposite of the obsessively detailed and neurotically organized person that I usually am. I did things that I never thought I would have the courage to do, such as jumping out of a plane and free falling for 60 seconds.  With stunning panoramas around every corner, I often had trouble believing that this could be reality.  Thank you Monsoon Diaries for bringing us all together and inspiring me to challenge myself.  Will remember these Monsoon Memories with nostalgia.” – Rachel Xu

“The Monsoon Diaries is an experience unlike any other. Anything can happen and you are encouraged out of your comfort zone. When you get out of that zone, you find new experiences and opportunities at any moment. Following through with them makes you realize that it was actually a really cool thing you just did.

You also get to meet and hang out with many different people from different places and backgrounds. You might end up making some really close friends for life. Thank you Calvin, for all the planning you put into your trips and being a supportive presence (whether you were there physically or not) in those moments when I was taking a leap out of my comfort zone. Those are the experiences I treasure the most.

Australia & New Zealand, and Japan…so far” – Donna Vo

“While I was tour guide in the centre of Australia, I had the good fortune of leading Calvin and his group of Monsooners on a 3 day tour to Uluru. I could not have asked for a greater collection of travellers.

They were kind, respectful, entertaining, helpful and genuinely interested in the rich Aboriginal culture we have in the outback. Even when the tour went a little sideways they rallied together and created a memory that I will never forget.

I’m excited for the future when I get to jump on tour with The Monsoon Diaries and explore the world in their unique style!” – Kurt Fraser

Michelle Duncan, Kelvin Sage, Sandra Davis, Rebecca Haile, Danayah Howell

“The team Loves this room. It’s fab!! We’re ending with a bang.” – Michelle Duncan

“For anyone looking to travel with an incredible itinerary, decent yet affordable places to stay, and an overall dope time in any country (or continent 🌎 😉) you choose, hit up Calvin D. Sun for all your needs! And check out his site for more on trips he’s arranged/led!” – Kelvin Sage

Shoutout to Calvin D. Sun of Monsoon Diaries for booking such a dope trip! – Kelvin Sage

13 + 10 =