Get lost in the beauty of the Australian Outback on this intoxicating tour from the Top End to Western Australia. Spot wildlife around enchanting Lake Argyle, explore the soaring walls of Windjana Gorge, hike along narrow paths at Echidna Chasm and cool off in crystal-clear watering holes beneath cavernous gorges. The Outback is a truly magnetic place – experience it in all its rugged beauty on this 4x4 adventure through the red desert Kimberleys under the blazing Australian sky.
Location: Darwin – Katherine Region
Welcome to the tropical city of Darwin, where your overland adventure begins. Meet your group and leader at 6.30 am and hit the road. Stop at either Edith Falls for a swim or at Katherine Gorge in Nitmiluk National Park for a walk (depending on the season). Eat lunch, then continue to your overnight private campsite on the edge of Nitmiluk National Park, where permanent tents with swags await you. In the evening, settle down for dinner with the group.
Location: Lake Argyle
After breakfast this morning, continue to Lake Argyle. On arrival, admire this 700-square-kilometre lake and it's plentiful wildlife like freshwater crocodiles. Take an optional sunset cruise before setting up camp nearby for the night.
Location: Purnululu National Park (Bungle Bungle Ranges)
Start the morning with some free time for a stroll around the picturesque town of Kununurra. Don’t forget to use this time to stock up on any last minute supplies before heading out into the remote Kimberley region. Get ready for some 4WD action as your experienced leader winds the truck across the rugger terrain of the entrance to Purnululu National Park, home of the iconic Bungle Bungles. It’s a bumpy ride but the scenery is fantastic. Enjoy an amazing Kimberley sunset at your bush camp.
Location: Purnululu National Park (Bungle Bungle Ranges)
After breakfast prepare for a full day of activities, as the group heads back out to explore the remarkable rock formations of the Bungle Bungles. Hike to the thin, red gap of Echidna Chasm and the enormous Cathedral Gorge. There’s also the opportunity to experience a helicopter flight over the Bungle Bungles (at your own expense). As the sun goes down, head back to your overnight bush camp.
Location: Bungle Bungles – El Questro
After breakfast today, get back on the road toward El Questro Station. Admire the remarkable scenery of the Carr Boyd and Durack Ranges, and head along the vast nature trail of Warnum (Turkey Creek). In the late afternoon, head to your campsite in El Questro wilderness park for dinner and a cool drink at the swinging Arm Bar.
Location: El Questro Station
Spend the day exploring El Questro. Start off with a dip at Zebedee Springs before taking on a hike in the Cockburn Ranges for a swim under the waterfall at Emma Gorge. Tonight, enjoy another night at the El Questro campsite.
Location: Gibb River Road – Mt Barnett
After breakfast, its time to hit the road again and start travelling along the legendary Gibb River Road, a 600 kilometre dirt track running through the centre of the Kimberley. We’ve got a fair bit of ground to cover today, so there is a fair bit of drive time, but we’ll be breaking the journey up with lunch and at a few stops along the way. Tonight’s destination is at Mt Barnett station located very close to Manning Gorge. This evening we camp at Mt Barnett by the banks of a fresh-water river, perfect to cool off in after your day hiking.
Location: Manning Gorge
Spend the morning exploring Manning Gorge and enjoy a swim in the natural pools under Manning Falls. Depending on the season, post-lunch we spend the afternoon exploring Adcock or Galvans gorge before heading back to camp to relax around the campfire.
Location: Bells Gorge – Windjana Gorge
After breakfast, head to Bell Gorge for a swim under the cascading waterfalls. The afternoon sees us head to Windjana Gorge, a segment of 375 million-year-old reef that was once underwater. Cut through by the Lennard River, which runs during the wet season then breaks up into little billabongs during the dry, this gorge attracts many species of bird and bat and is a great spot to see wild freshwater crocodiles.
Begin the day exploring the Napier Range. The major attraction here is a guided walk through Tunnel Creek, an extensive limestone cave system that extends 750-metres underground. Inside, shards of sunlight stream in through crevices, little bats flutter about and enormous stalactites rear down from the ceiling. Then make the final drive on to Broome, hopefully arriving in time for a stunning Cable Beach sunset.
Intrepid was started by two friends from Melbourne, Australia, in 1988 after embarking on a trip through the wilds of Africa in a modified ex-council truck, crammed with friends, supplies, a handful of aviator sunglasses and a case or two of beer. Could this type of travel be something others would be interested in? The answer was a resounding yes and today Intrepid send 100,000 travellers across the globe each year with the help of a staff of 1,000.
After three decades, founders Darrell and Manch, feel they know what travellers want. They get that it’s a big decision to fly across the world to wander the souks of Marrakech or enjoy a dreamy Angkor sunrise. They understand that you’re looking for a balance of inclusions and free time, a mix of classic highlights and local secrets you won’t find on Google. And of course, an authentic real life experience. Their leaders are born and raised in-country and they know their destination better than anyone. So you’ll do more than just see a place, you’ll live it. Small groups, big adventures and responsible travel – that’s Intrepid’s thing. With 1,000 trips in a variety of styles across 100 countries, you’re sure to find something you like.
Intrepid believe the real magic happens well away from the beaten path. It’s the little noodle bars, hidden galleries and backstreet bodegas and real life experiences you won’t find in a search engine. Real life experiences are those moments you know you’re really alive and experiencing something special. While it could be the instant you see one of the world’s great icons for the first time, it is more likely to be the moment you find yourself in the middle of a village square soccer game, being treated to a home-cooked meal by your new local friends or sharing a laugh with your fellow travellers as you try a new mode of transport … camel anyone? These unexpected moments are what travelling with Intrepid is all about, giving you a trip like no other.
Intrepid realises the world is a really big place. And there’s a plethora of different languages to learn, borders to cross and cultures to negotiate. Small group adventure travel makes these things easy and allows you to maximise your precious time off. Instead of worrying about logistics, you can focus all your energy on having the experience of a lifetime. Their tour groups are small enough to feel like you’re exploring a destination independently, but big enough to create a good social vibe. Group size will vary depending on where and how you’re travelling, but the average group size is about 10.
Intrepid’s themed trips encompass all hobbies and interests or could pique an interest in a new hobby you never knew you needed. From foodie explorations across Asia or India, sailing the seas in Thailand or the Caribbean, wildlife encounters in the Serengeti or Antarctica, scenic cycling or walking to Base Camp or through Tibet, and epic expeditions in Burma or Russia, you’ll be spoilt for choice.
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