Days
14
Price from
$2,995AUD

Explore South Australia and wind your way around the Red Centre before taking in the Top End.

Travel the length of Australia, tail to tip, on an epic overland adventure from South Australia to the Territory's Top End.
Watch the landscape transition from the rolling hills of the Clare Valley into the barren terrain of the Oodnadatta Track, enjoy a bushwalk in Wilpena Pound, pass through the world's largest cattle station and spend a night below ground in Coober Pedy. Call in at a kangaroo orphanage to see what's a-hoppin', see the sights of Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park and Kings Canyon, and then fly north for some croc spotting in the Mary River Wetlands and a taste of tropical Australia in Kakadu and Litchfield. This is the trip for those who want to experience all the Outback has to offer.


Start
Adelaide, Australia
Finish
Darwin, Australia
Destination
South Australia, Outback, Northern Territory, Uluru
Style
Basix
Theme
Explorer
Physical rating
Ages
Min 18
Group size
Min 1, Max 24
Code
POBAC

Why we love this trip

  • Get back to basics with this classic twelve-day overland adventure. See the highlights and national parks of Australia's Flinders Ranges, Red Centre and Top End in rugged, authentic style

  • Enjoy the flexibility of a private vehicle, the local knowledge of a passionate guide and the magic of camping under the great southern sky

  • Visit the Western MacDonnell Ranges, a little talked about outback gem

  • See some beautifully remote please in the Flinders ranges and the Oodnadatta track, an Adventure Tours itinerary exclusive

  • Check out one of the strangest towns in Australia - built underground

  • Get up early and see the sun rise over Uluru

  • Learn about the ancient culture and traditions of the Limilngan-Wulna people as they invite you into their community with a traditional 'Welcome to Country'

  • The Mary River Wetlands feature a wealth of wildlife, including the highest concentration of saltwater crocodiles in the southern hemisphere. Get up close to the snappy beasts on a billabong cruise

  • Discover the wonders of Kakadu National Park. Get adventurous on a 4WD tour to the spectacular Jim Jim Falls and see the ancient Aboriginal rock art of Ubirr

Is this trip right for you?

  • This is a basic trip, covering the highlights of Australia's Flinders Ranges, Red Centre, and Top End.

  • You'll spend some nights of the trip sleeping in outback camping grounds. While conditions can be basic and facilities are minimal, this is all part of the adventure. You'll also need to pitch in with preparing meals and cleaning. This is part of the experience of travelling in a group.

  • This trip requires a moderate level of fitness as it involves a lot of walking, allowing you to truly enjoy the surrounding nature. Some hikes are longer and more challenging than others. Please bring sturdy, comfortable walking shoes and comfortable clothing.

  • This trip is BASIX and we use mixed gender multishare accommodation. This means, the minimum age for the trip is 18 years old because minors aren't able to sleep in mixed gender rooms.

  • Temperatures in the Top End be extreme. During the day the weather can be hot (and the Australian sun is strong) so please bring appropriate clothing, use sun protection and drink plenty of water. In the evenings temperatures really drop, so ensure you have base layers and warm clothing.

Itinerary

This itinerary is valid for departures from 01 April 2017 to 31 March 2018. View the itinerary for departures between 01 April 2016 - 31 March 2017

Barely 100 clicks north of Adelaide lies the Clare Valley, an undulating sprawl of vineyards, wine cellars and quaint bluestone cottages. Renowned for its production of world-class Rieslings, this is one of Australia’s oldest wine regions – and one of its prettiest too. On the drive through to Wilpena Pound you’ll be treated to some extraordinary views of the Flinders Ranges, which, stretching for over 430 km across South Australia, are the state’s biggest mountain range. Arriving at our campsite there’ll be time for hike before snuggling down in a swag.

Total driving time takes around five hours.
Accommodation
  • Camping (with shared facilities) (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Wilpena Pound
Meals Included
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
Leaving the flinders Ranges, we cruise north towards the tiny town of Lyndhurst, where the entrance sign proclaims ‘Welcome to Lyndhurst. Pop. 30 (most days)’. Hitting the famous Oodnadatta Track, we’ll make a stop by Lake Eyre (Australia’s largest salt lake), before arriving at our campsite in William Creek – base for the night.

Total driving time today is approximately 8 hours
Accommodation
  • Camping (with basic facilities) (1 night)
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
Covering an area of six million acres, Anna Creek Station is the world’s largest working cattle station. The estate was founded in 1899 by Sir Sidney Kidman, a distant relative of Nicole who set from home out on a one-eyed horse at age 13 to make his fortune. By mid afternoon we’ll have reached the opal-mining town of Coober Pedy. The weather here is so hot that life’s better lived underground. After taking a guided tour of this subterranean society, and checking into an underground bunkhouse, you’ll have the afternoon at leisure. Try your luck ‘noodling’ for opals, or finish the day at Josephine’s Kangaroo Orphanage to see what’s hopping about.

Total driving time today is approximately 6.5 hours
Accommodation
  • Underground Multishare (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Anna Creek Station
  • Coober Pedy Mine tour
  • Josephine’s Gallery and Kangaroo Orphanage
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
We’ll be honest, there’s a fair bit of driving today. From Coober Pedy we travel across the Moon Plains, past the Dingo Fence, past Breakaways Reserve, and into Yulara. Make sure you have your Ipod fully charged and your neck cushion handy.

Today driving time will be about 8.5 hours.
Accommodation
  • Permanent tented camp (with shared facilities) (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Dingo Fence
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
Translating to the Pitjantjatjara word for ‘Many Heads’, the 36 domes of Kata Tjuta are a defining feature of the Red Centre landscape both topographically and spiritually. Rising 546 m above the surrounding plain, Mt. Olga’s tip is the highest point for miles around, while the site’s ridges and ravines are closely connected with numerous indigenous creation-time stories. Many of these stories are kept secret from outsiders, but you’ll learn a little about the local Anangu culture, and come to appreciate the beauty of their land, on a guided walk.

Tonight you can sleep in a permanent tent or curl up in a swag (Aussie bedroll) as you watch the desert sun set over Uluru and enjoy a night under the outback stars.

There isn't much driving today, about an hour in total between destinations. You will walk approximately 5-9km, depending on how much of Uluru's base you would like to walk.
Accommodation
  • Permanent tented camp (with shared facilities) (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Mala cultural interpretative walk
  • Uluru & Kata Tjuta National Park Fee
  • Uluru Base Walk
  • Uluru Cultural Centre
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
Uluru isn’t Coober Pedy, but it still gets pretty hot here come midday. If you’re keen to beat the heat on a walk around the rock’s base, we recommend an early rise. Uluru holds great significance to the local Anangu people, and appreciating this is key to appreciating Uluru itself. An indigenous guide will explain a little about the land during a cultural interpretative walk, after which there’s the opportunity to learn more at the onsite Cultural Centre. Later in the day there’s also the opportunity of taking a helicopter flight over Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park before we hit the road again for Watarrka National Park (Kings Canyon).

Today, driving time is about four hrs and walking is up to ten kilometres.
Accommodation
  • Permanent tented camp (with shared facilities) (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Watarrka National Park Entry Fees
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
With its 300-metre high sandstone walls, hidden waterholes, fern forests, chasms, canyons and caverns, Watarrka National Park is central Australia’s answer to an oasis. The highlight attractions here are the Garden of Eden, the Amphitheatre and the Lost City – all sites you’ll get to visit on the Rim Walk. Following lunch it’s back on the road for the onward drive to Alice Springs, where you'll check into your hostel before flying to Darwin tomorrow.

Driving time today is approximately 5 hours back to Alice Springs, and the Rim Walk is approximately 6km.
Included Activities
  • Kings Canyon Rim Walk
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
Today, skip the 1,500km of driving which is about 24 hours by road, and fly from Alice Springs to Darwin with Qantas Airways. Qantas was Australia's first commercial airline, and stands for "Queensland and Northern Territory Ariel Services" and is now one of the worlds best International airlines.

We'll arrange your air tickets and issue them a couple of weeks prior to your departure. On arrival in Darwin, someone will be waiting to transfer you to your hotel. Tonight, you’ll be staying at the Melaleuca on Mitchell. (no meals included)
Accommodation
  • Hostel (1 night)
Meals Included
  • Lunch
Kick back in balmy Darwin today, with time to wash your socks and jocks and perhaps relax by the rooftop pool at your hostel. If you're game, head a few doors down and visit the scaly locals at Crocosauras Cove!
Accommodation
  • Hostel (1 night)
Meals Included
There are no meals included on this day.
After meeting your group and leader this morning at 6:50am, leave Darwin and travel into Wulna Country, where you'll receive a Cul Cul ('Welcome to Country') by the traditional owners of the land, the Limilngan-Wulna people. Learn about their ancient culture as you enjoy bush tucker talks, didgeridoo demonstrations and basket weaving. Next stop is the Mary River wetlands system, which has the highest concentration of saltwater crocodiles in the southern hemisphere. Get close to these ‘salties’ and other wild creatures on a billabong cruise. Late in the afternoon arrive into Ubirr in time for sunset, seeing the vivid Aboriginal rock art that dates back over 20,000 years. In the evening head to your overnight camp in Kakadu where the group will have dinner.

Note: Total driving time today is around six hours. Total walking distance is up to two kilometres.
Accommodation
  • Permanent tented camp (with shared facilities) (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Mary River cruise
  • Pudakul Cultural Experience
Meals Included
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
Early this morning after breakfast, travel by 4WD to the Twin Falls. Experience this spectacular gorge aboard a boat cruise that’s operated by the national park, with a walk along the boardwalk afterwards. Unwind and relax on the sandy banks before heading to explore Jim Jim Falls. After a quick lunch break, take in the views of this natural wonder before taking a challenging walk to the base of the falls. Here you can choose to swim or relax on the beach, enjoying the spectacular scenery, before making the short drive to your overnight bush camp.

Note: Total driving time today is just over four hours. Total walking distance is approximately one-and-a-half kilometres.

Accommodation
  • Camping (with shared facilities) (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Jim Jim Falls Walk
  • Twin Falls Walk
  • Twin Falls Gorge River Cruise
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
After breakfast, head to either Maguk (Barramundi Gorge) or Gunlom Falls and cool off with a dip in the plunge pools. Visit the historic gold-mining centre of Pine Creek and head further south after lunch. Journey for around three hours in a private vehicle to your campsite on the doorstep of Nitmiluk National Park. Once comfortable, have dinner with the group before relaxing in your tent for the night.

Note: Total driving time today is around five-and-a-half hours. Total walking time is approximately an hour-and-a-half.

Accommodation
  • Permanent tented camp (with shared facilities) (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Maguk (Barramundi Gorge)
  • Pine Creek Gold-Mining Centre
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
Spend the morning at the magnificent Katherine Gorge in Nitmiluk National Park. Perhaps take a cruise along the gorge or rent a kayak and paddle downstream. These options are seasonal and at your own expense. In the afternoon, head off to Edith Falls where you can cool down with a refreshing swim in the huge rock pools. Settle down for the night in a snug camp and enjoy dinner with your group.

Note: Total driving time today is around four-and-a-half hours. Total walking time is up to three-and-a-half hours (optional walks included).

Accommodation
  • Permanent tented camp (with shared facilities) (1 night)
Optional Activities
  • Katherine Gorge Scenic Cruise - AUD87
  • Katherine Gorge Canoe from - AUD45
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
Once you’ve had breakfast, head to Litchfield National Park. Filled with waterholes, creeks and waterfalls, it’s the perfect place to soak up the tranquillity of the tropics. Visit the gateway of Florence Falls, the popular Wangi Falls and the refreshing waters of the Buley Rockholes. Enjoy a picnic lunch, stroll through steamy rainforests and cool off with a dip in one of Litchfield's swimming holes. In the afternoon, take the two-hour drive back to Darwin where your trip ends. Enjoy an optional night out with the group if you decide to stay in Darwin for the night. The total driving time today is around three-and-a-half hours.


Note: Should any of the attractions of the standard itinerary not be open as a result of National Park decisions surrounding accessibility and safety, activities will be substituted. Please see 'climate and seasonal information'.

Included Activities
  • Buley Rockholes
  • Florence Falls
  • Litchfield National Park
  • Wangi Falls
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch

Meals

10 breakfasts, 13 lunches, 10 dinners

Transport

All Terrain vehicle

Accommodation

(default): Camping (with basic facilities) (2 night), Camping (with shared facilities) (2 nights), Permanent tented camp (with shared facilities) (3 nights), Permanent, furnished tented camp (with shared facilities) (3 nights), Underground Multishare (1 night) Hostel multishare (2 nights)

Included Activities

  • Wilpena Pound
  • Anna Creek Station
  • Coober Pedy Mine tour
  • Josephine’s Gallery and Kangaroo Orphanage
  • Dingo Fence
  • Mala cultural interpretative walk
  • Uluru & Kata Tjuta National Park Fee
  • Uluru Base Walk
  • Uluru Cultural Centre
  • Watarrka National Park Entry Fees
  • Kings Canyon Rim Walk
  • Mary River cruise
  • Pudakul Cultural Experience
  • Jim Jim Falls Walk
  • Twin Falls Walk
  • Twin Falls Gorge River Cruise
  • Maguk (Barramundi Gorge)
  • Pine Creek Gold-Mining Centre
  • Buley Rockholes
  • Florence Falls
  • Litchfield National Park
  • Wangi Falls

Dates & availability

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Important notes

1. Tour commences in Adelaide on day 1 at 6am and finishes in Darwin day 14 at approx 6pm
2. Onward travel to be booked the following day
3. This trip requires a sleeping bag

Essential Trip Information

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