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Total Territory Top End & Outback

Total Territory Top End & Outback

Embark on a Northern Territory adventure from Darwin to Alice Springs, taking in the region’s biggest and best draws along the way. Witness Uluru during a stunning sunrise, wander through the majestic canyons of Kata Tjuta and admire the views from Kings Canyon. Enjoy exclusive access to Arnhem Land and get a taste of the tropics in Kakadu and Litchfield National Parks, as well as Katherine Gorge. A region of exceptional landscapes and intriguing cultural attractions, this tail-to-top adventure through the Territory is a trip that will leave you with a profound appreciation of Australia’s raw and rugged natural beauty.

Why you’ll love this trip

  • Get back to basics with this classic overland adventure
  • Skip 1500 km of straight driving between Darwin and Alice Springs in and fly with Qantas Airways, on an included flight
  • Enjoy authentic Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander experiences in the Top End and Red Centre and exclusive access to Arnhem Land
  • Discover the wonders of Kakadu National Park. Get adventurous on a 4WD tour to the spectacular Jim Jim Falls and see the ancient Aboriginal and Torres Straight Islander rock art of Ubirr
  • See the sun rise over Uluru, walk the rugged rim of Kings Canyon, discover the highlights and national parks of Australia’s Top End in authentic outback style.
  • Enjoy the flexibility of a private vehicle, the local knowledge of a passionate guide and the magic of camping under the great southern sky

Is this trip right for you?

  • This is a basic trip, covering the highlights of Australia’s Top End and Red Centre in a short amount of time.
  • You’ll spend some nights of the trip sleeping in outback camping grounds. While conditions can be basic and facilities are minimal, this is all part of the adventure. You’ll also need to pitch in with preparing meals and cleaning. This is part of the experience of travelling in a group.
  • This trip requires a moderate level of fitness as it involves a lot of walking, allowing you to truly enjoy the surrounding nature. Some hikes are longer and more challenging than others. Please bring sturdy, comfortable walking shoes and comfortable clothing.
  • This trip uses multishare hostel accommodation that may be in mixed-gender dorm rooms. We don’t offer private rooms, but you can book our Territory Encompassed trip if you’d prefer twin share motel
  • Temperatures in the Red Centre and Top End be extreme. During the day the weather can be hot (and the Australian sun is strong) so please bring appropriate clothing, use sun protection and drink plenty of water. In the evenings temperatures really drop, so ensure you have base layers and warm clothing.
  • The Top End & Kakadu portion of this trip has a strict luggage limit of 10kg. Excess luggage can not be carried however, it can be stored at Darwin accommodation.
  • REGION: Australia
  • START/END: Darwin to Alice Springs
  • PRICE: $3490.00 p.p.
  • VENDOR: Intrepid

Meals – 8 breakfasts, 10 lunches, 8 dinners
Transport – All Terrain vehicle, Private vehicle
Accommodation – Camping (with shared facilities) (3 nights), Permanent tented camp (with shared facilities) (2 nights), Permanent, furnished tented camp (with shared facilities) (3 nights), Hostel multishare (2 nights)

Included activities

  • Guluyambi Cultural Cruise
  • Mawurndaddja rock art and occupation complex
  • Jim Jim Falls Walk
  • Maguk (Barramundi Gorge)
  • Edith Falls
  • Buley Rockholes
  • Florence Falls
  • Litchfield National Park
  • Wangi Falls
  • Uluru & Kata Tjuta National Park Entrance
  • Uluru Cultural Centre
  • Maruku Arts cultural experience
  • Kings Canyon Rim Walk

Day 1: Darwin – Arnhem Land
We leave Darwin with a bright and early start, and head to the World Heritage listed Kakadu National Park. Firstly, we make our way to see the stunning rock art at Ubirr before climbing to the top of a lookout to see the sprawling Nardab Floodplain. Next stop, head to the border of Kakadu and Arnhem Land to experience a Guluyumbi cruise along the East Alligator River. Travelling with a Bininj guide, understand more about the cultural importance of the East Alligator River to the region’s traditional custodians. Once the cruise wraps up, jump in a vehicle and cross straight into Arnhem Land for an unforgettable afternoon of exploration at an Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander art complex known as Mawurndaddja. This complex has a spectacular series of galleries with rock art spanning from the present time to many thousands of years of age. Your guide will explain the importance of this art, the methods used to perform this expressionism and the anthropological system used to date the art as you are guided through the site. Spend the afternoon exploring this historic ancient site before heading back to Kakadu and settling into this evening’s campsite.

Note: Total driving time is about six hours (approximately 350kms) Total walking time is approximately one and a half hours (including stops for informative talks)

Accommodation – Permanent tented camp (with shared facilities) (1 night)
Included Activities – Guluyambi Cultural Cruise, Mawurndaddja rock art and occupation complex
Meals Included – Lunch, Dinner

Day 2: Kakadu National Park
After fuelling up with an early breakfast, it’s on to Jim Jim Falls, Kakadu’s most iconic natural attraction. It’s a challenging walk through monsoon forest and over boulders. Recharge with a cooling dip in the clear waters beneath the falls upon arrival, or simply soak up the spectacular scenery while relaxing on the beach. After lunch head to Anbangbang and discover ancient rock art. Originally Warramal clan land, who have now passed away, Anbangbang is now looked after by neighbouring Mirarr and Djok clans. Consider taking a scenic flight over Kakadu in the afternoon, or visit Bowli Cultural Centre.

Total driving time: about four hours (approximately 120 km)
Total walking time: about two and a half hours

Accommodation – Camping (with shared facilities) (1 night)
Included Activities – Jim Jim Falls Walk
Meals Included – Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 3: Kakadu National Park to Nitmiluk National Park
After breakfast, head to either Maguk (Barramundi Gorge) or Gunlom Falls and cool off with a dip in the plunge pools. Stop off at the Lazy Lizard Hotel and shop at Pine Creek before heading further south after lunch. Journey for around three hours in a private vehicle to your campsite on the doorstep of Nitmiluk National Park. Once comfortable, have dinner with the group before relaxing in your tent for the night.

Note: Total driving time is about five and a half hours (approximately 340kms)
Total walking time is approximately one and a half hours

Accommodation – Permanent tented camp (with shared facilities) (1 night)
Included Activities – Maguk (Barramundi Gorge)
Meals Included – Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 4: Nitmiluk National Park
Spend the morning at the magnificent Katherine Gorge in Nitmiluk National Park. Perhaps take a cruise along the gorge or rent a kayak and paddle downstream. These options are seasonal and at your own expense. In the afternoon, head off to Edith Falls where you can cool down with a refreshing swim in the huge rock pools. Continue on to the edge of Litchfield National Park. Settle down for the night in a snug camp and enjoy dinner with your group.

Note: Total driving time is about four and a half hours (approximately 350kms)
Total walking time is approximately three and a half hours

Accommodation – Permanent tented camp (with shared facilities) (1 night)
Included Activities – Edith Falls
Meals Included – Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Optional Activities
Katherine Gorge Scenic Cruise – AUD94
Katherine Gorge Canoe from – AUD45

Day 5: Litchfield National Park – Darwin
Once you’ve had breakfast, head into Litchfield National Park. Filled with waterholes, creeks and waterfalls, it’s the perfect place to soak up the tranquillity of the tropics. Visit the gateway of Florence Falls, the popular Wangi Falls and the refreshing waters of the Buley Rockholes. Enjoy a picnic lunch, stroll through steamy rainforests and cool off with a dip in one of Litchfield’s swimming holes. In the afternoon, take the two-hour drive back to Darwin.

Total driving time is about three and a half hours (approximately 250kms)
Total walking time is approximately one hour

Accommodation – Hostel (1 night)
Included Activities – Buley Rockholes, Florence Falls, Litchfield National Park, Wangi Falls
Meals Included – Breakfast, Lunch
Special Information – This is a combination trip, made up of two of our most popular trips. Some travellers will be leaving today and others heading on to Alice Springs in the morning where the makeup of your group and guide will change

Day 6: Darwin – Alice Springs Flight
Today, skip the 1,500km of driving which is about 24 hours by road, and fly from Darwin to Alice Springs with Qantas (QF). Qantas is Australia’s first commercial airline and is now recognised as one of the world’s best International airlines.

We’ll arrange your air tickets and issue them a couple of weeks prior to your departure.

On arrival in Alice springs please look for your transfer vehicle (operated by Alice Wanderer – green and yellow bus) to transfer you into Alice Springs.

The rest of the day is free to explore.

Accommodation – Hostel (1 night)
Special Information
Your Darwin transfer (operated by Darwin City Airport Shuttle Service) will depart approx 2 hours prior to your flight.
Your Alice Springs transfer (operated by Alice Wanderer – green and yellow bus) will transfer you to the Alice Springs YHA

Day 7: Alice Springs to Uluru
The major point of difference with this trip is that the itinerary is flexible. Where you go and in what order will largely depend on what your group want to see, what the weather’s doing, and what your trip leader recommends. Therefore, the following description is only a rough outline of what you can expect. The region’s big name attractions, however, you’re guaranteed to see: Uluru/Kata Tjuta, Kings Canyon, Palm Valley and the Western MacDonnell Ranges. Several lesser known attractions – Rainbow Valley, Owen Springs, Ruby Gap and the Eastern MacDonnell Ranges – you’ll get to visit if seasonality and time permit.

The following itinerary is therefore only an example of the form your trip could take.

Starting off in either Alice Springs or Yulara, make your way to Kata Tjuta (the Olgas) and take a guided walk through the awe-inspiring Domes of Kata Tjuta. Then head to Australia’s most iconic landmark: Uluru. As the sun begins to set below the horizon watch the rich colours change against the backdrop of a blazing Red Centre sunset. Head back to camp for a hearty dinner, and ponder what the following day may hold.

Total driving time is approximately five and a half hours.
Total walking time is around an hour.

Accommodation – Permanent tented camp (shared facilities) (1 night)
Included Activities – Uluru & Kata Tjuta National Park Entrance
Meals Included – Lunch, Dinner
Special Information – This morning’s departure is at 0605am. Please be ready with your bags packed for an early start.

Day 8: Uluru Sunrise
An early start this morning is rewarded with an Uluru sunrise. While the morning is fresh enjoy a walk around the base of Uluru, gaining insights into the land magnificent views of Uluru. After your stroll, we walk to the cave paintings near Mutitjulu Waterhole at the base of Uluru. You will be in the hands of an Anangu guide who will share the stories of this unique landscape and explain the Art, the Culture and connection to Land. The on-site Cultural Centre also houses an extensive collection of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander arts and crafts for you to browse.Once you’ve had lunch, perhaps purchase some art and craft of the First Peoples of Australia at the Uluru Cultural Centre. Travel onto the exclusive campsite within Watarrka National Park (Kings Canyon), where the group will eat and sleep for the night.

Total driving time today is around three and a half hours.
Total walking time is approximately two hours.

Accommodation – Permanent tented camp (shared facilities) (1 night)
Included Activities – Uluru Cultural Centre, Maruku Arts cultural experience
Meals Included – Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 9: Kings Canyon
After breakfast, get your hiking shoes on and head out to explore the impressive formations of Kings Canyon. You’ll be left breathless by the sheer beauty of the canyon, as you trek through the Amphitheatre, the Lost City, the lush and ancient Garden of Eden and the North and South Walls. Lunch is a welcome prospect, and after you’ve relaxed for a little while we head along an iconic Red Centre dirt track to the Western MacDonnell Ranges where we stay overnight at our permanent campsite at Glen Helen.

Total driving time takes around five hours.
Total walking time is approximately three hours.

Accommodation – Permanent tented camp (shared facilities) (1 night)
Included Activities – Kings Canyon Rim Walk
Meals Included – Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 10: Western MacDonnell Ranges
Spend this morning exploring the mysterious palms at Palm Valley. The only road in is in a dry river bed. This afternoon explore the Western Macdonnell Ranges, highlights include Ormiston Gorge, where we keep our eyes peeled for wallabies whist admiring its colourful walls, continue on to the exceptional vistas at Ellery Creek Big Hole and perhaps cool off with a dip. Your guide will find a suitable place to set up our bush camp tonight.

Total driving time is about 45 minutes.
Total walking time will be up to 10km

Accommodation – Bush Camping (basic facilities) (1 night)
Meals Included – Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 11: Eastern MacDonnell Ranges – Alice Springs
Today we’ll be exploring one of the Outback’s best kept secrets – the Eastern Macdonnell ranges. Learn about the ‘Caterpillar Dreaming’ on a short walk at Emily Gap, then travel on to Trephina Gorge for a 1-hour guided walk through this area of beautiful rock formations and myriad birdlife. For lunch we’ll be calling in at the historical Ross River Homestead, an iconic building established in the 1890’s as a regional supply centre to the goldfields. Back on the dirt track, next stop is the ‘Ghost Town’ of Arltunga, which serves as a magnificent example of early European settlement. Learn about the case of mistaken gemstone that led to a mining rush here, and which also precipitated its abandonment. After exploring the best of the Eastern Macdonnell Ranges, it’s back to Alice Springs for a late afternoon arrival. No accommodation is included today.

Total driving time will be about three hours
Meals Included – Breakfast, Lunch

Our trip prices are subject to variable and seasonal pricing, both of which are standard practice within the travel industry. This means our trip prices may vary at any time in accordance with demand, market conditions and availability. It is likely that different passengers on the same trip have been charged different prices. Your best option if you like the price you see is to book at that time. Any reduced pricing or discounts that may become available after you have paid your deposit will not apply. If you wish to cancel your booking to take advantage of a cheaper price, full cancellation conditions apply. The most up to date pricing are available on our website. Prices are based on currency exchange rates as of June 2018; note that prices may vary depending on which currency the booking is made. We reserve the right to impose surcharges up to 56 days before departure due to unfavourable changes in exchange rates, increases in airfares or other transportation costs, increases in local operator costs, taxes, or if government action should require us to do so.  In such instances, we will be responsible for any amount up to 2% of the trip price and you will be responsible for the balance. If any surcharge results in an increase of more than 10% of the trip price you may cancel the booking within 14 days of notification of the surcharge and obtain a full refund. Air Passenger Duty is included in the price of your air inclusive trip. Please note that a surcharge may be applied to all purchases made by credit card.

For more information please connect with
a South Pacific Specialist at

+1 833-262-2321


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