Destinations

1

Rating

Duration/days

Days

Per day

$ 2,106

From

$ 2,106
Operated by intrepidgeckos

The year was 1988… While most of the world wasted their time dreaming of hoverboard-mounted lasers, joining wild pyramid schemes and listening to Milli Vanilli, two mates from Melbourne spurned these distractions and instead turned their youthful, entrepreneurial beards toward the thing they loved the most – travel.

Highlights

  • Start your journey right with a Cul Cul (Welcome to Country) from your Limilngan-Wulna hosts, a gracious ceremony from the Traditional Owners of the land you begin your adventure on.
  • Watch as the sacred monolith of Uluru changes colour during an unforgettable sunrise and discover why so many are captivated by this striking island mountain.
  • See rock art that was sketched over 50,000 years ago in Mawurndaddja and learn about the site’s spiritual significance and archaeological research from a local guide.
  • Hike through the otherworldly Valley of the Winds for spectacular views of Kata-Tjuta, the towering domes that form something akin to a forest of rounded rocks.
  • Get closer to nature with a few nights in a swag, a simple one-person tent that allows you to feel the breeze and admire the stars as you fall asleep.
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Embark on an adventure from Darwin to Alice Springs, including Arnhem Land and sacred Uluru, on this nine-day tour. This classic road trip-style overland adventure proves the best way to experience this rugged land is by going back to basics – complete with nights spent under starry skies, cooling off in natural rock pools and waking to the layered calls of rainbow bee-eaters and spangled drongo birds. Find the essence of this ancient country in its most remote areas, among the people who have called it home for tens of thousands of years.

Itinerary

Day 1: Darwin – Arnhem Land

Welcome to Darwin, the Northern Territory’s tropical capital. There’s no time to waste, so get cracking at 6.50 am and hit the road to Wulna Country, where your Limilngan-Wulna hosts – the land’s Traditional Owners – will greet you with a Cul Cul or ‘Welcome to Country’. Learn about their culture during bush tucker talks and didgeridoo and basket weaving demonstrations. Continue to the border of Kakadu and Arnhem Land for a Guluyumbi cruise along the East Alligator River with a Bininj guide. Learn about the cultural importance of the East Alligator River to the Bininj people and take in the tranquillity and rugged beauty. Back on land, jump in a private vehicle and drive to Arnhem Land’s Mawurndaddja. This sacred complex (only recently opened to visitors) has a spectacular series of rock art that research indicates is over 50,000 years old. Spend the afternoon exploring this atmospheric site and learning about its history from your guide. Head to Kakadu for an overnight stay.

Day 2: Kakadu National Park

After fuelling up with an early breakfast, head to Jim Jim Falls, Kakadu's most iconic natural attraction. Take a challenging walk through monsoon forest and over boulders, then recharge with a cooling dip in the clear waters beneath the falls. After lunch head to Anbangbang, another incredible site that features ancient art on what was originally Warramal land. Sadly, there are no surviving Warramal people, so the care of the site is maintained by the neighbouring Mirarr and Djok communities. This afternoon, you have the option of taking a scenic flight over Kakadu or visiting the Bowli Cultural Centre.

Day 3: Kakadu National Park

After breakfast, head to either Gunlom Falls or Maguk (Barramundi Gorge) for a swim in another pristine waterhole. Maguk flows down the steep walls of rugged gorge into a beautiful natural plunge pool, while the steep climb to the Gunlom Falls plunge pool is rewarded with sweeping views of Kakadu and the welcome shade of gum trees. Neither option will disappoint. After a relaxing morning, it’s time to hit the road. Stop in the old gold-mining town of Pine Creek for lunch before continuing for another 3 hours to your private campsite on the doorstep of Nitmiluk National Park. Once comfortable, have dinner with the group before settling in under the stars for the night.

Day 4: Nitmiluk National Park – Litchfield National Park

Spend the day exploring the deep Nitmiluk (Katherine) Gorge and greater Nitmiluk National Park, a wonderland of colours, ancient rock art, waterfalls and wildlife. While here, you can explore on foot or choose to take a cruise or rental a kayak to get a closer look. Keep in mind that these optional activities are seasonal and at your own expense. In the afternoon, travel to Edith Falls, a hidden oasis of clear, cool waters surrounded by bronze boulders. After a quick swim in the huge rock pools, continue to tonight’s camp located at the edge of Litchfield National Park, where dinner awaits.

Day 5: Litchfield National Park – Darwin

A bit of a local secret, Litchfield is awash with tropical rainforest, gorgeous waterfalls and crystal-clear waterholes. Visit Florence Falls, Wangi Falls or Bluey Rockholes, then tuck into a picnic lunch. Enjoy a stroll through the steamy rainforests and refreshing dip in one of the park’s gorgeous swimming holes. In the afternoon, make the 2-hour drive back to Darwin.

Day 6: Darwin – Alice Springs

Today, skip 1500 kilometres of driving (which would take about 24 hours) and fly from Darwin to Alice Springs. Transfer from your accommodation to the airport. On arrival in Alice Springs please look for your transfer vehicle, a green and yellow bus operated by Alice Wanderer) to transfer you to your hotel. The rest of the day is free to explore ‘Alice’, your gateway to the Red Centre.

Day 7: Uluru

Hit the road for Australia’s legendary Outback. Stop at an Outback roadhouse for an optional breakfast (at your own expense), then it’s back on the road for the drive to Yulara, stopping off along the way for views of Mt Connor and various salt lakes. After lunch, jump back in the vehicle and travel into Uluru National Park. Grab a coffee and check out the Cultural Centre, then walk over to the main attraction – Uluru. Depending on how active you’re feeling, you can choose to do an optional ten-kilometre walk around the base of Uluru. No two angles of the sacred monolith are the same and its sheer size will leave you gobsmacked. If you'd rather do a shorter walk, follow the ‘Mala Walk’ signs for a stroll to the Mutitjulu Waterhole. In the evening, watch a spectacular Uluru sunset while enjoying some tasty snacks. Once the sun has gone down, drive to tonight’s campsite for a hot shower and hearty dinner. Roll out your swag (Aussie bedroll) and get comfortable under the stars.

Day 8: Uluru Sunrise – Valley of the Winds

Rise early for an included breakfast and memorable Uluru sunrise. Next head to Kata-Tjuta (The Olgas) for a guided six-kilometre walk through the legendary Valley of the Winds. The walk can be challenging, but you’re rewarded with a spectacular perspective on mind-blowing rock formations. Return to camp for lunch. In the afternoon, drive to a remote bush camp in Watarrka National Park (Kings Canyon) and freshen up with a hot shower. Tonight’s dinner will be an authentic Outback barbecue.

Day 9: Kings Canyon Rim Walk – Alice Springs

After breakfast, drive to Kings Canyon for a guided six-kilometre hike along the Canyon Rim. This varied landscape of chasms, canyons and cliffs is one of the most spectacular and surprising in the Outback. Enter a natural amphitheatre, discover the Lost City, cool off under the shade of the Garden of Eden’s leafy palm trees and admire panoramic views from the North and South Walls. After lunch, make tracks back to Alice Springs with a few leg-stretches on the way, before pulling into Alice in the early evening.

What’s Included

Food

DIETARY REQUIREMENTS: On most days, breakfast, lunch and dinner will be included. Our tours are activity and participation based. During your travels with us you will have the opportunity to assist with daily activities such as setting up camp, helping prepare meals and clearing dishes. None of this is difficult however many hands make light work and any assistance provided to crew is always much appreciated. Most people agree that this type of activity helps you feel like less of a tourist and more of an explorer. All food for this trip is purchased and packed prior to your group leaving on day one. After we’ve left town it can be very difficult to source special dietary requests. Travellers with special dietary requirements or food allergies are required to advise us at the time of booking. You may be asked to pay for any additional food if you have not advised us of any special dietary requirements. Due to the often remote nature of our trips, food is basic but plentiful and delicious. The below dietary needs can be easily catered for. Vegetarian Gluten Free Dairy Free (soy available ) Pork Free Please bring your own staples (nuts, bars, snacks) if you require a diet differing from the above. * Religious and more specific dietary requirements are generally unable to be catered for on these trips. NOTE: For those passengers commencing their trip in Yulara, lunch will not be provided on day one.

Accommodation

ACCOMMODATION POBTTC Basix accommodation consists of simple permanent twin share tents with single sleeping platforms. Each sleeping platform has a rubber sleeping mat, we also have swags (Aussie bed rolls) available at our campsites if you would like to experience sleeping in a swag. You will need to bring your own sleeping bag or pre-purchase one from us. Please also provide your own pillow if you wish. Accommodation in Alice Springs and Darwin is in mixed gender multishare accommodation. Private rooms and single supplements are not available on this trip. Please ensure you have selected your desired camping style correctly. MULTISHARE ACCOMMODATION: For BASIX travellers, when not camping the standard accommodation is multishare, and may be in mixed-sex dorms. The minimum age for this trip is 18. FINISH TIMES: Our trips generally finish early evening. We recommend booking one night post accommodation in your end city and planning onward travel for the following day. We cannot accept responsibility for missed onward travel if we are delayed for some reason on the last day of travel. PARTICIPATORY CAMPING: To participate in this trip you must be prepared to assist with preparing meals, cleaning dishes, collecting firewood, setting up and packing up camp every day, in all conditions.

Transport

DRIVING DISTANCES IN AUSTRALIA Australia is a BIG country! In fact, the whole of Europe fits into Australia with plenty of room to spare. Australia has a total land area of 7,706,168 sq km, and the coastline spans a massive 15,049km. Here in Australia we're used to driving long distances on holiday, but you may not be. Take for example, our 10 day Perth to Broome trip will see you travelling about the length of Portugal. Driving from Alice Springs to Darwin is about the length of the UK, and our 10 day Perth to Adelaide trip is about the same distance from Spain to Poland. Yep, it's a big country! However, that's why we think seeing Australia from the ground is better. We live in a country that has it all; stunning coastline and beaches, the outback, tropical rainforests, and some seriously amazing landscapes and wildlife. Whilst you may spend some days in the vehicle a little longer than others getting to the next destination, we think it's worth it! AIRPORT TRANSFER CONTACT DETAILS SOUTHBOUND DARWIN, Darwin City Airport Shuttle Service: Transfer Darwin airport to accommodation 08 8947 3979 bookings@darwinshuttleservices.com.au ALICE SPRINGS, Alice Wanderer: Transfer accommodation to Alice Springs Airport 1800 1800 722 111 (free call) or +61 8 89522111 info@alicewanderer.com.au

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Arnhem Land and Uluru Camping Adventure

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