Rock N Top
Day 1: Alice Springs to Uluru
While you may think Uluru would be the obvious place to start in the red centre, we're going to mix it up and take you first to a camel farm. Why? Well… because they're camels, and we thought you'd get the hump if we missed out on them. From there it's on to Yulara and then Uluru in the afternoon where we'll have a guided tour, sip champagne as the sun goes down behind the rocks and just watch one of nature's greatest shows.
Day 2: Uluru
Then, the following morning, you get to do it all over again in reverse as you wake up with the sunrise and marvel at Ulurua again in the dawn light. You'll also be able to get up close and personal as we go for a walk all around the base and follow in the sacred footsteps of the traditional owners of this World Heritage site. This is your chance to get away from the crowds and get a teensy taste of bush life. We'll be on the lookout for all sorts of wildlife - wedge-tailed eagles, spinifex hopping mice and thorny nevils. Alternatively, you could splurge on a ride on a Harley or a flight and see the real Top of the Rock. After all that, we get stuck in and creative as we try an Aboriginal meditative dot painting class in the Art Markets before settling down for a bit of 'I'm so tiny, the universe is so big!' as we star gaze under the clear skies of the southern hemisphere.
Day 3: Uluru to Kings Canyon
Time for a bit more ancient sacred strolling as we take a stroll out into Kata-Tjuta (the Olgas) and wander among these giant red sandstone formations along the Valley of the Winds. We'll also get a glimpse of how the Aboriginals pass down their history through a Dreamtime archaeology lesson before we head into the Watarrka National Park. Swags included, we'll kip here under the stars and swap campfire stories late into the night.
Please be aware that in winter months (May-Sept), nighttime temperatures can drop to near 0 degrees, warmer clothing will be required for the night sleeping in the swag.
Day 4: Kings Canyon to Alice Springs
Ready for a real challenge? Heart Attack Hill awaits. It's the toughest part of the Rim Walk, but we're confident you'll be up for and up to it. This is the most famous walk around the most famous canyon in Australia. It's a trek though plants that look like something out of Jurassic Park, around dome shaped rocks worn down by the wind and sand over time and a visit to the Lost City. Actually, we forgot the best bit, you'll also visit the Garden of Eden (fun fact - it wasn't actually Adam and Eve, but Bruce and Sheila) - a waterhole and sheltered valley, which completes a pretty awesome day.
Day 5: Alice Springs
Aaand we're back slap bang in the middle of Australia at Alice Springs. This is your chance to get to know this town a bit. Visit Kangaroo Dundee's place (he hand rears joeys!) and hold a baby kangaroo. Learn about the history of the Royal Flying Doctors or explore the outback in a more tame environment at the Desert Park Gardens. There's loads more to do, including art galleries, souvenir shopping and stocking up for your next adventure!
Day 6: Alice Springs to Tennant Creek
We're not quite done with the red centre yet. This time we're heading out to see the Overland Telegraph Line at Barrow Creek Hotel, all of which sounds like something from the wild west, but is actually a real life old telegraph station. Pretty sure you can't send mum a telegram, but you could try! Then, off to another sacred site at Karlu Karlu, or the Devil's Marbles. Which aren't anywhere near as dodgy as they sound…
Day 7: Tennant Creek to Katherine
If there's one thing Australia is known for, it's the heat. And the red centre is certainly no exception to that. So, lucky for you, we've lined up a trip to one of Australia's best known pubs - the Daly Waters. It's 'in the middle of somewhere' and was originally the site of Australia's first international air port. When flights took eight days, you knew you were going to want to get off the flight and have a drink pretty much immediately. Once you've had a drink, or two, you can chill in the thermal springs of Mataranka in the heart of the Never Never. It all sounds made up, but trust us, it's real! And if you're still not suitably chilled, how about a game of lawn bowls and a bbq at the local country club? It's a tough life…
Day 8: Katherine
Today we get up close and personal with some of Australia's wildlife, as we kayak the Katherine River. You've got the whole Gorge to explore! If you'd rather not paddle it yourself, you could always upgrade to a three-gorge cruise and get further out into the wilderness before we spend the rest of the day soaking up the majesty of the Edith Falls.
*Wet season (Nov-May): Canoeing replaced with Katherine Gorge Boat Cruise.
Day 9: Katherine to Kakadu
That's not a knife! This is a knife! Alright, alright so we've seen Crocodile Dundee too many times, but when it's shot all around the Kakadu, can you blame us? Lucky for you, you get to explore it without needing any kind of knife. It's home to a couple saltwater crocs, but luckily we're heading somewhere that there aren't any, but if you still don't want to swim, fair cop, we'll take you up for a scenic flight over the landscape so you can see the escarpment that marks the borderline of Arnhem Land.
*Wet season (Nov-May): Waterfalls replaced with other Kakadu site depending on road and weather conditions.
Day 10: Kakadu
Nothing in Australia is small, and the Kakadu is no exception - it's half the size of Switzerland! So, we need to make the most of it. Time for an early start as we head deep into the parks to see some Aboriginal rock are and cruise the East Alligator River, which is home to crocs… how confusing. Lucky us, we've also managed to wangle special permission to enter Arnhem Land for a lesson on how the Aboriginal natives hunt and get around on the rivers. You won't have to put your hunting skills to practical use though, as we buy our lunch today. Better than having to skin and gut it though! And then, once that's all done and you're stuffed, we'll take a little climb up to the top Ubirr Rock and watch the red sun set over the red centre.
*Wet season (Nov-May): Today's stops visited on previous day and today's itinerary going straight to Litchfield National Park. Overnight: Batchelor Motel, Litchfield.
Day 11: Kakadu to Darwin
After all that time in the desert, you're bound to have picked up a healthy, red, dusty coat, but now's your chance to wash it all away in the waterfalls of Litchfield National Park. One last swim and while you may be clean, we're pretty sure you'll never quite get rid of the mark the Outback has made on you. After all that, we wind up and Darwin and finish the trip. Nice one, mate!
*Wet season (Nov-May): Start at Batchelor Motel and spending more time in Litchfield National Park before returning to Darwin.
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