14 Day Melbourne to Darwin Outback Adventure

Melbourne Outback & Reverse Tours


Description

Spend two weeks exploring all of Australia's hot spots! See Uluru, the Great Ocean Road, Adelaide city and arty Melbourne all with the hottest prices. 


Details

Why You'll Love It

  • Explore the arthouse hub of Melbourne
  • Take in world-class coastal views as you travel the stunning Great Ocean Road 
  • Experience sunset over the Twelve Apostles 
  • Sleep with the kangaroos and koalas in the Grampians National Park
  • Sleep under the earth at underground city in Coober Pedy
  • Sleep beneath the Milky Way in the true Aussie Outback
  • Hike the stunning Kings Canyon, Kata Tjuta and Uluru National Parks
  • Hike at dawn at the base of Uluru 
  • Watch the sunset over magnificent Uluru
  • Soak in the Mataranka Thermal pools, a steaming tropical Oasis 
  • Explore the incredible open canyon in Katherine Gorge
  • Swim in Plunge Pools under waterfalls

What's Included

  • 3 day/2 night Great Ocean Road Adventure
  • 2 nights Adelaide
  • 6 day/5 night Adelaide to Alice Springs Adventure
  • 2 nights in Alice Springs
  • 3 day/2 night Alice Springs to Darwin Adventure
  • 9 breakfasts, 12 lunches, and 9 dinners

Itinerary

Day 1: Melbourne to Princetown

We begin the ultimate road trip, cruising towards the Great Ocean Road and stop to watch surfers in action at famed beaches such as Bells Beach and Torquay (home of surf brands Rip Curl and Quicksilver). We also visit artistic beachside villages of Apollo Bay and Lorne. We’ll stop at Kennett River Koalas to see the cuddly creatures in the wild and the historical section of the Great Ocean Road that was carved through cliffs by returned World War I servicemen. We take a walk through the Great Otway National Park, home to some of the world’s oldest temperate rainforest. There’s no better place to finish the day than the famed Twelve Apostles. This spectacular collection of limestone stacks is best appreciated at sunset from the boardwalk. The next morning you will have the opportunity to view it from the skies in a helicopter (at extra cost). Tonight, we sleep in dormitory style accommodation in the dormitory rooms of a backpacker’s hostel on the Great Ocean Road.

Meal(s) included : Lunch, Dinner



Day 2: Princetown to Halls Gap

We continue along the Great Ocean Road, stopping at several extraordinary rock formations along the Shipwreck Coast, such as the Bay of Martyrs, London Bridge and Loch Ard Gorge. We enjoy lunch at Tower Hill Reserve, the site of a dormant volcano, lake, wetlands and habitat to lots of wildlife: emus, koalas, kangaroos, possums, echidnas and many types of birds. We enter the Grampians National Park in the afternoon, where we take a walk (40 minutes) to MacKenzie Falls. Just before sunset when the local wildlife, such as wallabies, kangaroos and kookaburras come out to play, we walk (an easy hour) to The Balconies, which provides a magnificent viewpoint and photo opportunity of the surrounding ranges and valleys. Tonight we sleep in shared wood cabin accommodation, with the mountains towering around us.

Meal(s) included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner



Day 3: Halls Gap to Adelaide

We get up to hike a challenging 2 hours to the Grampians, but it’s worth the effort for such awe inspiring views. We visit the Brambuk Cultural Centre to learn about local Aboriginal history before hitting the highway and arriving into Adelaide city at approximately 7pm. Check into your accommodation for 2 nights.

 

Day 4: Free Day Adelaide 

Today is yours free to explore Adelaide before continuing on your journey! Opt to head to the Barossa Valley for a day filled with wine tasting and rolling hills for just $109 of stick around and explore Kangaroo Island on an overnight adventure for $390. 

 

Day 5: Adelaide to the Southern Flinders Ranges

We start our adventure travelling through the vineyards of the Clare Valley wine region, but soon enough we’re heading into the rugged Outback through the historic town of Melrose, gateway to the Flinders Ranges. We enjoy an easy stroll through the awesome Alligator Gorge, which is sometimes bursting with wild flowers. We’ll then settle in the heart of the Southern Flinders Ranges for the night.

Meal(s) included: Lunch, Dinner



Day 6: Southern Flinders Ranges to Coober Pedy

Along the way to Coober Pedy – the Opal Capital of the World – you’ll notice the incredible changing landscapes. Wildlife, such as kangaroos, emus and eagles will scatter as road trains thunder across a landscape that resembles Mars or the Moon. On a tour of an underground mine and Opal Mine and Museum you’ll learn about the history of Coober Pedy. A highlight for some is visiting Josephine’s Kangaroo Orphanage, where you can meet the rescued kangaroos and baby joeys and admire (or buy) Aboriginal art and didgeridoos. Tonight, we sleep like the locals do – underground, in bunkhouse accommodation.

Meal(s) included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner



Day 7: Coober Pedy to Watarrka National Park (Kings Canyon)

It’s a big day driving up the Stuart Highway, with several pit stops en route. Our mission today is to reach the majestic Watarrka National Park (Kings Canyon) where we’ll camp for the night in an authentic station.

Meal(s) included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner



Day 8: Watarraka National Park to Uluru

We get up early to explore Watarrka (Kings Canyon), where you’ll need to stop to admire and photograph the massive sandstone walls, vast canyon floor and stunning gorges. On the Canyon Rim Walk (3-4 hours), you’ll experience the beautiful Garden of Eden and learn more about the local Aboriginal culture. After lunch, we begin our journey into Uluru. Nothing will prepare you for the sight of The Rock. We quickly set up camp before learning about the local Aboriginal History at the Uluru Kata Tjuta Aboriginal Cultural Centre. Soon after we’ll be experiencing our first awe-inspiring Uluru sunset, taking time to absorb the beauty and majesty of this place.

Meal(s) included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner



Day 9: Uluru / Kata Tjuta

We start the day at dawn taking a (3 ½ hour) walk around the base of Uluru. Hiking through acacia woodlands and grassy clay pans, you’ll spot wildlife at waterholes, marvel at The Rock’s geological wonders and learn more about Aboriginal interpretations from your Culturally Accredited Groovy Guide. Later, we relax back at our campground or join one of our Adrenalin Plus options.

Meal(s) included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner



Day 10: Uluru to Alice Springs

After devouring yet another scrumptious breakfast we’ll experience a glorious sunrise over Kata Tjuta, before we hike to lookouts around Kata Tjuta (The Olgas) and visit the majestic Valley of the Winds with its ancient rock formations and extraordinary views. After lunch, we’ll hit the road to Alice Springs, arriving approximately at 6:30pm. Check into your accommodation for 2 nights. 

Day 11: Free Day Alice Springs 

Enjoy a free day to explore Alice Springs and recover for the next part of your adventure

 

Day 12: Alice Springs to Banka Banka Cattle Station

You will be collected from your Alice Springs accommodation at approximately 6.00am and then our adventure through the ‘Territory’ to Darwin begins. Just north of Alice Springs is the Tropic of Capricorn (80% of the Northern Territory lays north of this point). Further along the track is the Devils Marbles (Karlu Karlu) which are a collection of gigantic granite boulders magically balanced on top of one another. Our day winds to a close just north of Tennant Creek at historic Banka Banka Cattle Station where we camp in swags for the night.

Meal(s) included : Lunch, Dinner

 


Day 13: Banka Banka to Mataranka

No trip to the ‘Territory’ is complete without a visit to the Daly Waters Pub, an important watering hole for explorers and drovers in days gone by and now a great spot for a cold beer, a bit of history and a ‘fair dinkum Outback experience’! Later in the day you can take a soak in the Mataranka Thermal Pools, a lush oasis fringed by paperbark trees and nearby where we camp overnight.

Meal(s) included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner



Day 14: Katherine Gorge to Darwin

Your guide will wake you early this morning for the short drive to the Nitmiluk (Katherine Gorge) National Park which is owned by the Jawoyn Aboriginal people. Ancient sandstone has been carved away by the Katherine River to create a deep and picturesque gorge. You may like to take a boat cruise or paddle a canoe (not available all year due to seasonal conditions) through the peaceful water (both optional and additional cost). In the afternoon, relax and watch the changing landscape as we travel to cosmopolitan Darwin and arrive in the early evening.


Pickups / Departures

This package departs Melbourne every Tuesday, Friday & Sunday from December to March and every Tuesday & Friday from April to November, departure days are subject to availability.

Great Ocean Road (Melbourne to Adelaide): 

YHA Metro (78 Howard St, North Melbourne) at 6:30am
Hotel Discovery (167 Franklin St) at 06.40am
Nomads Industry (198 A’Beckett St) at 06.45am
Neighbours Centre (570 Flinders St) at 07.00
Victorian Arts Centre (100 St Kilda Rd, Melbourne) at 07.15
Base Backpackers (17 Carlisle St, St Kilda) at 07.35am

Adelaide to Alice Springs: Pick up in Adelaide City from 6:30am. Your hostel pickup time will be advised on booking. 

Alice Springs to Darwin: From central Alice Springs accommodation from 6:00am


Extras

  • Accommodation upgrades are available for those wishing to sleep in private rooms
  • Optional camel riding, segway tours, and scenic flights at Uluru