If you really want to get Down Under and experience Australia’s highlights without feeling rushed, you’ll have to get off the big coaches. Explore Melbourne before hitting the Great Ocean Road and cutting through the Outback to the Red Centre. Here you’ll experience the mysteries of Uluru and gain insight into Aboriginal Australian culture. When it comes time to bed down, shake things up with a variety of unique accommodation – swags to underground hostels and even a traditional Outback station.
Arrive at any time.
There are no planned activities during the day, so check into the hotel and explore the city. If you arrive early enough, head into the city to take in the 'cultural capital of Australia'. Get lost in the city's famous laneways, go on the hunt for the perfect flat white (hint: Melbourne loves its coffee shops), catch the tram to St. Kilda, or wander around the über-cool Fitzroy neighbourhood.
Travel past world-famous surf beaches along the Great Ocean Road. Enjoy views of the 12 Apostles and walk through the rainforest in Great Otway National Park.
Depart early morning for the journey to Port Campbell. Check out the famous surf towns of Torquay, Lorne and Apollo Bay en route. Make a stop at Great Otway NP for an included rainforest walk. Explore the scenic attractions of the Great Ocean Road including the picturesque 12 Apostles and Loch Ard Gorge.
Travel inland to Grampians National Park, known for its sandstone mountain range and impressive rock art. Trek through the forest, lush with vegetation and wildlife.
Start the day visiting more attractions of the Great Ocean Road including The Arch and the now broken London Bridge. Visit Tower Hill State Wildlife Reserve for a chance to see animals endemic to Australia such as koalas, emus and kangaroos. Opt to visit an Aboriginal Cultural Centre to learn about the significance of the area to the indigenous people. End the day with an evening walk in the Grampians NP.
Explore Grampians NP. Enjoy waterfalls, lakes and beautiful vistas. Later, travel to Adelaide.
Early start to explore more of Grampians NP. Walk to the stunning Jaws of Death Balconies, visit MacKenzie's Falls, and travel onto Adelaide, the capital of South Australia.
Take advantage of a free day to explore Adelaide. Opt to go on a dolphin-spotting boat cruise (seasonal).
There are no planned activities during the day, so enjoy free time to explore the city. Opt to go for a cruise to swim with dolphins (seasonal), take the tram to Glenelg beach, visit a nearby winery, grab lunch at the Central Market, or enjoy time getting lost in the city.
Enjoy a wine tasting in the Clare Valley, then it's on to Quorn.
Hit the road in the morning. Travel through the Clare Valley wine area, making a stop for a wine tasting to learn about the different grape varietals and the development of the vineyards in the area. Travel to the town of Quorn for the night.
Head to Wilpena Pound for a walk to a natural amphitheatre sacred to the Aboriginal Adnyamathana people. Learn about Aboriginal art and early settler history.
Take the day to explore the amazing scenery of Flinders Ranges.
Travel along the Old Ghan Railway route. Marvel at ruins of early settler sites and opt for a scenic flight over the great salt lake of Lake Eyre.
We follow the Oodnadatta Track, strewn with ruins of failed early settler activity, along the route of the equally unsuccessful original Ghan Railway route. Visit the dry salt lake of Lake Eyre.
Travel to the town of Coober Pedy, the world's opal mining capital. After a guided tour of a mine, escape the heat like the locals by spending the night underground.
Travel to the unique opal mining town of Coober Pedy, where people live underground to avoid the heat. A guided mine tour gives insight to the mining process and the importance of opal to the area. Overnight like the locals by sleeping in an underground hostel, a once-in-a-lifetime experience.
Take in the vastness of the Outback on a driving day, then bed down in a swag (padded canvas bedroll) around a campfire and sleep under the Outback sky.
Enjoy a morning walk through the gorges and valleys of Kings Canyon. Drive to Uluru, where Australia's most iconic view awaits. Experience the colourful sunset at Uluru while enjoying a glass of bubbly.
Enjoy the morning taking in the scenery or by going on an optional 4km walk through the gorges and valleys of Kings Canyon of Watarrka Natoinal Park.
Enjoy the Mala Walk at Uluru to learn the importance of the rock to the Aboriginal Australians.
The next morning, awake before sunrise to do the Mala Walk around part of the base of Uluru (Ayers Rock) while learning its significance to the local Aboriginals. Visit the cultural centre to get a better understanding of the area.
Discover more of the Red Centre with a hike through the beautiful Valley of the Winds in Kata Tjuta. Transfer to Alice Springs, where the tour ends upon arrival in the early evening.
Travel to the rock formations of Kata Tjuta (the Olgas) and, heat permitting, walk through the Valley of the Winds to explore the surrounding area before continuing onto Alice Springs.
The tour ends upon arrival to Alice Springs in the evening.
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Trip Name: Melbourne to the Red Centre
Duration: 13 Days
From Price: $2,199
Supplier Tour ID: OAMR/133033
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