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Central Australian Discovery

4.0/5 Based on 3 Reviews No Booking FeesDedicated Travel Advisor
Fully Guided Adventure Small Group 4WD Scenic
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 Trip Length
16 Days
 Trip Starts
 Trip Finishes
16 Day Central Australian Discovery Itinerary (APT)
Countries Explored: Australia
Trip Operator
Trip Style
4WD Adventure
4 - 4.5 Star
Max. Group Size
Guide Level
Fully Guided
Trip Code


Read 3 reviews and enjoy exclusive savings on APT's 16 Day Central Australian Discovery. Travel by 4WD from Adelaide north to Darwin. Journey through South Australia exploring Coober Pedy, the Red Centre, home to Uluru and Kings Canyon. Enjoy a flight over the ‘Lost City’ and venture into Katherine Gorge before finishing in Darwin.


Arrive into Adelaide airport, where you will be met on arrival and transferred to your hotel. This evening, get to know your fellow travellers and Driver-Guide as you enjoy a Welcome Dinner at your hotel. Stay: Adelaide, The Playford Hotel (D)

After breakfast, journey through the wine growing district of the Clare Valley. Here, enjoy lunch at Skillogalee Winery, showcasing the exceptional locally grown produce and wines of the region. Travel to the Flinders Rangers. Enter Flinders Ranges National Park, a cultural, historical and geological wonder renowned for its spectacular 800-million-year-old landscapes Stay Two Nights: Wilpena Pound, Ikara Safari Camp (B/L/D)

Today you will have a full day to explore the incredible Flinders Ranges National Park. You may wish to take a fantastic optional scenic flight (own expense) before a walk into Wilpena Pound. After lunch, the afternoon is at your leisure to further explore, perhaps spend time in the geological site of Brachina Gorge. Keep an eye out for the endangered Yellow-footed Rock-wallaby as you traverse the gorge's layers, dating back some 130 million years. Or perhaps enjoy some time to relax. This evening, enjoy dinner back at your resort. (B/L/D)

This morning farewell the Flinders Ranges. Stop for lunch at the Prairie Hotel. Later, arrive at Marree and stay at your historic hotel that dates back to 1883. Stay: Marree Hotel (B/L/D)

Today you will also have the option to board a scenic flight over the awe-inspiring Kati Thanda–Lake Eyre, where you will gain a bird's-eye view and true appreciation of this magnificent sight - own expense. This afternoon we arrive in Coober Pedy. Stay: Coober Pedy, Desert Cave Hotel (B/L/D)

Signature Experiences:
  • Drive to the edge of Kati Thanda-Lake Eyre and look out to the seemingly endless salt flats.
  • Journey along the iconic Oodnadatta Track, keeping an eye out for the 5,614-kilometre Dog Fence.

Make your way to the Umoona Opal Mine, where you will watch an informative award-winning documentary presented in an underground theatre. You will learn about the different types and quality of opals, as well as visiting a mine that was worked in the 1920s. Farewell South Australia; and cross the border into the Northern Territory. Later arrive at Uluru. In the heart of the Red Centre, the luxury of Sails in the Desert complements the surrounding natural beauty. This evening, enjoy dinner at your resort. Stay Two Nights: Uluru, Sails in the Desert Hotel, Ayers Rock Resort (B/L/D)

At sunrise, enjoy a base tour of Uluru, learning about ancient traditions and stories from the Dreamtime while you marvel at this Australian icon. While you circumnavigate this amazing natural landmark, the experience will leave you mesmerised. Rising 348 metres above the plain, this national treasure is higher than both the Eiffel Tower in Paris and the Chrysler Building in New York. Tonight enjoy the once-in-a-lifetime Field of Light art installation. (B/L/D)

Signature Experiences:
  • Tonight, indulge in the Sounds of Silence dinner under the stars. Savour a glass of sparkling as the sun goes down, then help yourself to a ‘bush tucker' buffet accompanied by the music of a didgeridoo.

After breakfast, explore the incredible Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park. Visit Kata Tjuta - the Olgas, consisting of 36 majestic domes, which form deep valleys and steep-sided gorges. An important Indigenous cultural site, Kata Tjuta translates to ‘many heads'. Continue to explore the immense red walls of Walpa Gorge. Later arrive at Kings Canyon Resort. Set in the Watarrka National Park, just nine kilometres from Kings Canyon, Kings Canyon Resort will be a stay to cherish. Stay: Kings Canyon Resort and Lodge (B/L/D)

Today travel from Kings Canyon along the Mereenie Loop Road to Alice Springs. Along the way stop at Hermannsburg and visit the Namatijira School of Art, where you view magnificent authentic art pieces before enjoying lunch at Gosses Bluff crater. This afternoon arrive in Alice Springs where you will enjoy a tour of this iconic township. Stay Two Nights: DoubleTree by Hilton Alice Springs (B/L/D)

Signature Experiences:
  • Journey into the heart of pristine Watarrka National Park and embark on the Kings Canyon Rim Walk.

Head to Simpsons Gap, just one of the scenic areas that pierce the West MacDonnell Ranges. This sacred area is an important spiritual site to the Arrarnta Aboriginal people, where several dreamtime stories have said to take place. The area also contains one of the most prominent waterholes in the region. Here, be sure to keep an eye out for Black-footed Rock-wallabies. Continue to the West MacDonnell Ranges National Park, a vast and spectacular section of the ranges. This is an outstanding example of ancient landscapes shaped over time by climatic elements. Here, cool scenic gorges are important refuges for a collection of plants and animals from the harsh elements, many of which are found only here.

The landscapes you see played a significant role in the stories of Western Arrernte Aboriginal culture, which have been passed on to generations for thousands of years. At Angkerle – Standley Chasm, follow a creek where spring-fed pools attract a variety of unique birdlife. The chasm's European name is a tribute to Ida Standley, who became the first school teacher in Alice Springs in 1914. Afterwards, visit the beautiful Ormiston Gorge, filled with stunning geology and is also home to a variety of unique species, including the Long-tailed Dunnart. Later, enjoy the afternoon at your leisure to perhaps, take some time to relax and unwind form a hard day's exploration before enjoying dinner later in the evening. (B/L/D)

Today, make your way to Tennant Creek. Along the way, stop at Karlu Karlu – Devils Marbles. A living cultural landscape, be in awe as the golden sunlight shines upon these giant granite boulders. Geologically, the marbles were formed from an upsurge of molten rock that cooled and became solid beneath a layer of sandstone. Over time water infiltrated the cracks of these solid structures, breaking down the sandstone, and then the granite. As a result, rounded granite boulders perched on top of each other have been revealed. Karlu Karlu is also recognised as of great cultural importance, with nearly the entire Reserve a registered sacred site, with many stories and traditions associated to this area. Arrive at Barkly Homestead and enjoy dinner. Stay: Tennant Creek, Barkly Homestead (B/L/D)

Today make your way to Lorella Springs Wilderness Park. Enjoy lunch at the iconic Heartbreak Hotel. Continue to Lorella Springs Wilderness Park for dinner. Stay Two Nights: Lorella Springs Wilderness Park (B/L/D)

Signature Experiences:
  • Enjoy a scenic flight over the unique rock formations of the Lost City. A series of sandstone outcrops, the Lost City evokes the remains of an ancient civilisation.

Today, we will explore this coastal wilderness sanctuary, driving through a variety of landscapes and enjoying some bush walks. This 4000-square-kilometre park contains coastal floodplains, salt flats and mangroves, escarpment country and dense forest. (B/L/D)

Travel to Katherine via the natural Mataranka Thermal Pool, where you can unwind in the warm crystal-clear waters, which are said to have healing properties for aches and pains. Stay: Mataranka Territory Manor Motel (B/L/D)

Arrive in Darwin, this evening, say goodbye to newfound friends and your Driver-Guide during a farewell dinner at your hotel. Stay: Hilton Darwin (B/L/D)

Signature Experiences:
  • Board a cruise through Katherine Gorge and marvel at the network of gorges carved from centuries-old sandstone.

Your amazing adventure draws to a close. After breakfast, you will be transferred to Darwin airport for your onward flight. (B)

Trip Inclusions

  • View the salt flats of the largest inland lake in Australia, Kati Thanda–Lake Eyre
  • View the Field of Light installation at Uluru and enjoy the Sounds of Silence dinner
  • Embark on the Kings Canyon Rim Walk and take in spectacular views
  • Board a scenic flight over the Lost City, a series of large sandstone outcrops
  • Enjoy a cruise through Nitmiluk (Katherine) Gorge and keep an eye out for crocodiles

  • Experiences in 18 destinations
  • The services of an expert APT tour director and driver
  • Price includes airport transfers and park fees

  • Locally inspired dining - a total of 41 meals

  • Itinerary and inclusions are subject to change
  • Weather may cause disruptions to itinerary
  • APT highly recommends travel insurance
  • Tour Activity Level – Active. This tour includes some longer, more challenging hikes over uneven terrain
  • Prices are for land tour only, flights not included

Trip Reviews (3) Most Recent 'Central Australian Discovery' Reviews

AVG. RATING 4.0 / 5
3 Reviews
5 Star
4 Star
3 Star
2 Star
1 Star
Wonderful tour of Central Australia   0 , QLD, Australia, Aug 2022
This was a great itinerary, allowing us to see many of the outback's natural beauty and scenery, at our leisure. There were so many highlights throughout this tour, but special mention of the scenic flight over Lake Eyre and the helicopter over the Lost City in the Lorella Springs Wilderness Park. The accommodation and meals quality ranged from 5 star ...read more to lower, depending on the remoteness of the locations. However this was to be expected in some areas. August was a good time to visit, as the days were not too hot, especially when heading north. It was chilly in the early mornings and evenings, in the south and central parts, but we were advised about that.

We were lucky with a good mix of fellow passengers who got along very well. The duffle bags provided by APT made it easy for everyone to pack their luggage neatly into, as well as transport to and from the bus. A top job by our APT tour team (Tony and Linda Goodlet) with their easy style of interaction as well as being well organised, genuinely friendly and knowledgeable. We would have no hesitation in recommending APT tours to everyone.

Thank you to Tracey Standing from Global Journeys for your professionalism and helpfullness throughout the process of booking our holiday and keeping us up to date along the way. Our booking started with you over 2 years ago during the difficult covid lockdowns, when we were supposed to be travelling to Canada/Alaska. Our Central Australia tour was wonderful and we are still keen on booking the Canada/Alaska tour with you, when hopefully the world settles down.
Central Australian Discovery 0 , NSW, Australia, May 2022
Really disappointed the itinerary in Uluru was changed to jam 2 days of original itinerary into one day. This stopped me being able to walk around Uluru, also gave limited time to explore the Olgas. To do the rim walk at Kings Canyon you had to depart the motel in the dark at 6am. Days on the 'truck' as the guide called it, were long, that was to be ...read more expected but we had days when we were not even told where or when the next comfort stop would be, sometimes driving for 3 hours with no word from Driver or Guide. I would have expected more commentary on the area we were travelling thru. Very rushed tour, poor value for money, most people on the tour felt the same. We would arrive at our destination, eat, sleep & move on early the next day. No time to look around. Very limited free time.
Wonderful Central Australia Discovery   2 , Hong Kong, May 2019
I had been to places where not many people have paid attention to but are gorgeous. The landscapes in Alice Springs, West MacDonnell Ranges, and the helicopter ride over the lost cities were fabulous.
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Kimberley & Outback Wilderness Adventures

APT Kimberley & Outback Wilderness Adventures (2023)

Australia’s vast Kimberley region is one of the world’s last true wilderness frontiers. Uncover 420,000 square kilometres of ancient landscapes and boab-studded plains. Then there’s the Outback. Here, your senses are heightened as you enter a boundless landscape alive with Indigenous culture and powerful echoes of an ancient history. Its stark beauty...more is majestic to behold. And Queensland boasts a coastline defined by magnificent islands and reefs, as well as a characterful and rugged interior. Whether you want to journey to the ends of the land or find yourself within its spiritual centre, APT is for you.

Prices & Dates

There are currently no departures available on this trip. Either it's the end of the season and new departures will be released shortly, or this itinerary has been changed and will no longer continue. Feel free to contact us for information about when next seasons dates will be released or click here to view the general release dates for all destinations.

Tour & cruises prices are per person. Prices shown have savings applied, are subject to availability and may be withdrawn at any time without notice. Prices and trip information are correct at the time at this point in time, however are subject to confirmation at the time of booking and are subject to change by APT.

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