The National Gallery of Australia’s Botticelli to Van Gogh: Masterpieces from the National Gallery, London exhibition represents only the fourth time that van Gogh’s exuberant Sunflowers has been loaned out of the country. This blockbuster show is an unprecedented opportunity to see more than 60 works from the National Gallery’s superlative collection, spanning 450 years and including masterpieces by Titian, Rembrandt, Vermeer, Velázquez, Turner and Cézanne.
Our three-day tour gives you the opportunity to enjoy the exhibition in the company of the former director of the Art Gallery of South Australia, Christopher Menz. Together we also visit the National Arboretum, a visionary project forged from tragedy, and enjoy a visit to the National Portrait Gallery.
Covid-19 cancellation policy
The following special cancellation and refund conditions applies to this tour.
If you book on this tour and then find that you are unable to travel due to Government imposed Covid-19 travel restrictions we will provide a 100% cash refund of all monies paid to Academy Travel for this tour. This refund will be given irrespective of how close to the tour start date you become ineligible to travel, but you must inform us within 24 hours of becoming personally unable to travel in order to obtain a full refund.
If the tour cannot proceed due to Government imposed Covid-19 travel restrictions, the tour will be cancelled and all participants will receive a 100% cash refund of all monies paid to Academy Travel for this tour. This refund will be given irrespective of how close the cancellation occurs to the start date of the tour.
Admire 60 masterpieces from the National Gallery of London, spanning 450 years and including rarely-loaned works such as Van Gogh’s Sunflowers
Contemporary Canberra’s vision, from the National Arboretum, a significant collection of rare and endangered trees, to the National Portrait Gallery which highlights individuals’ contributions to Australia’s story
A welcome dinner in one of Canberra’s finest restaurants
Day 1: Assemble at our hotel for background lectures on the National Gallery’s Botticelli to Van Gogh exhibition. Welcome dinner.
Day 2: Explore the National Gallery exhibition with your tour leader, with time at leisure to admire works by Titian, Vermeer, Cézanne and others, as well as the gallery’s permanent collection. After lunch at the National Arboretum and a panoramic drive around its main sites. Visit the National Library of Australia to see the current exhibition A Nation Imagined.
Day 3: Our tour concludes with a visit to the National Portrait Gallery, with a tour of both the permanent collection and the temporary exhibit Australian Love Stories.
The tour begins and concludes at our hotel in Canberra. We can assist in booking transport by plane or bus.
Friday 21 May
Make your way to Canberra and check in to our hotel from 2pm. This afternoon Christopher Menz gives two detailed lectures on the collection history of the National Gallery, London, with special reference to the works exhibited in Canberra. Enjoy a group dinner. (D)
Saturday 22 May
We spend the entire morning at the National Gallery of Australia in the company of Christopher, exploring the seven key themes of this landmark exhibition: the Italian Renaissance, Dutch and Spanish Golden Age painting, Grand Tour and landscape and modern art are exemplified by Titian, Rembrandt, Vermeer, Velázquez, Goya, Turner and Cézanne. After free time for lunch, we travel to the National Arboretum, a huge 250-hectare (618 acre) site and one of the world’s largest living collections of rare, endangered and significant trees. Organised into 44 ‘forests’ with over 44,000 trees, some of them more than 100 years old, the Arboretum also has a delightful Bonsai collection that we tour with the curator. We then depart for a visit to the National Library of Australia and enjoy morning tea on the shores of Lake Burley Griffin. We visit the current exhibition, A Nation Imagined, exploring the late 19th-century colonial view of The Picturesque Atlas of Australia, a work that made a significant impact on the Australian impressionists. This evening we meet for drinks and a discussion of the exhibition’s highlights. (B, evening drinks).
Sunday 23 May
This morning we travel to the National Portrait Gallery, where we visit the excellent new exhibition, Australian Love Stories. These charming works, crossing photography, art, sculpture and other media, explore love, affection and connection in the world of Australian film, music and celebrity. There is also time to explore the permanent collection, before we return to our hotel by private coach ca 12.30pm for the end of our tour. (B)
A former art museum director and curator, with expertise in the arts and music throughout Europe, the USA and Australia.
Christopher Menz is a former art museum director and curator and has been leading cultural tours in Europe, the United States and Australia since 2013. He has expertise and interest in the visual arts and music.
Christopher has a BA (Hons) from Flinders University. He is a former director of the Art Gallery of South Australia. Before that he was a curator, specialising in decorative arts, and worked at the National Gallery of Australia, Art Gallery of South Australia, and National Gallery of Victoria. He has published and lectured extensively on Australian and European decorative arts, notably on the design work of William Morris, and curated numerous exhibitions. Christopher is based in Melbourne where he is an art consultant and valuer, and Development Consultant for Australian Book Review.
Christopher has led cultural tours to Germany, England, the United States, as well as in Australia. He has also been a tour leader on European river cruises.
We asked Christopher, what do you think clients get from travelling with you?
“It is always a great thrill to be able to introduce clients to new experiences and to places they might otherwise not have visited or not have visited recently. I always hope to give tour guests something that adds to the experiences of the places, cities, museums and art galleries, and performances that they would not get if travelling alone.”
The award-winning Avenue Hotel provides comfort and luxury in the heart of Canberra, close to Parliament House, local museums, dining and entertainment in the Braddon district. www.avenuehotel.com.au
What is included in the tour price?
Unless otherwise stated in the itinerary, our tours include the following:
All accommodation at properties mentioned in the itinerary
Land travel by private air-conditioned coach. Taxis may also be used for short trips on some tours. Some city stay tours may involve local transport
Lunches and dinners indicated with the letters L and D in the itinerary
Beer, wine and soft drinks at sit-down lunches and dinners. Picnic and light lunches may not include alcoholic drinks
Services of tour leader throughout tour
All entrance fees to sites mentioned in the itinerary
Local guides at some sites
All tips for drivers, local guides and restaurants for included meals
On international tours only
Costs involved in obtaining visas for countries visited, where required, and when stated as included
Background talks on tour, site notes and online resources
Any flights mentioned in the itinerary that take place during a tour
Some trips may be made by public transport such as high-speed train and subway
What is not included in the tour price?
Our tours do not include the following:
Air or land travel from your home city to the tour start/end points
Local taxes and airport levies that we are not able to prepay on your behalf. We will advise you of these charges (if any) before you depart
Lunches and dinners not specifically indicated with the letters L or D in the itinerary
Personal expenses such as passports, laundry and phone calls
Costs associated with any activity mentioned as “optional” in the itinerary, or any suggested free time activity
Airport Transfers on international tours
Tours may begin at either the arrival airport or the first hotel. If you have booked your international flights with Academy Travel, and arrive before the tour commences, we will provide airport to hotel transfers to the closest main city on your arrival, and to the closest airport at the end of the tour. These may be either individual or group transfers
Tours begin either at the arrival airport or the first hotel, depending on the itinerary. If you have booked your international flights with Academy Travel, we will provide airport to hotel transfers to the closest main city on your arrival, and to the closest airport at the end of the tour. These may be either individual or group transfers.
We require all tour participants to have adequate insurance coverage.
For domestic tours, Medicare and your private medical insurance should be used to cover any medical expenses.
Domestic travel insurance is available and strongly recommended to cover non-medical expenses such as cancellation.
For international tours, we require you to have comprehensive travel insurance. Prices vary according to your age, your pre-existing medical conditions, the countries you are visiting and the length of your journey abroad.