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Australian Outback Tour: Self-Drive from Darwin to Uluru

Experience the extraordinary wilderness

  • From 10 days
  • Self-Drive
  • May to September
  • 21+ Hours

Plan an Outback Tour and you'll experience the highlights of the Australian continent and see many of its iconic landmarks. A time of contrast awaits you: from lush jungle green to sparse red desert, from bustling cities to tranquil seclusion - Australia has it all. Planning a tour of the Australian Outback isn't easy - with Tourlane, organize your flights, accommodations, guides, and car rental, all in one place!

  1. Darwin

  2. Kakadu National Park

  3. Katherine

  4. Tennant Creek

  5. Alice Springs

  6. Watarrka National Park

  7. Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park

  8.  Less


Australian Outback Tour: Self-Drive from Darwin to Uluru

from

$1,649

pp excl. flights

Plan your trip

Travel Itinerary

1. Darwin 

Your journey to the heart of Australia begins in Darwin, the continent's northernmost city. Darwin has a tropical climate and its proximity to Southeast Asia makes it a melting pot of different cultures. You’ll probably be tired after the long flight from the USA, but if you’re in the mood for culture, visit the Museum of the Northern Territory. Here, you’ll find a comprehensive overview of the region's history, science and art. If you want to take it easy after your arrival, head to the George Brown Darwin Botanic Gardens for something peaceful and serene. We recommend a fish restaurant for dinner on the city’s waterfront - ask your Tourlane Travel Expert for recommendations. 

2. Kakadu National Park

Next, you’ll discover the Kakadu National Park - a UNESCO World Heritage site that is the same size as West Virginia! The park is home to over 280 species of birds, as well as more saltwater crocodiles than anywhere else in the southern hemisphere. Keep your eyes peeled for buffalos and wallabies, too. The Twin Falls and the Jim Jim Falls are difficult to reach, but their breathtaking beauty will more than compensate you for your efforts. 

3. Katherine

The region's climate helped make Katherine known as the city where “the outback meets the tropics”. This region was originally home to the Jawoyn and Dagomen Aborigines - Europeans only started to settle in the 19th century, and Aboriginal people still make up a significant part of the population today. In the Katherine Museum, learn more about the history of the city and region. Very close to Katherine is Nitmiluk Katherine Gorge National Park - one of the most popular excursion destinations in the region. Take a boat trip or paddle a canoe through the calm waters. Alternatively, head to  Mataranka Hot Springs - hot thermal springs where visitors relax in the warm waters surrounded by the lush green of the tropical forest. 

4. Tennant Creek

The small town of Tennant Creek is located in the heart of the Northern Territory and was the scene of Australia's last great gold rush when the precious metal was discovered here in 1926. Learn more at the Battery Hill Mining Center. There are several Aboriginal groups in the region, whose culture continues to shape the city - there are also several sites in the area that are sacred to the Aboriginal people. The award-winning Nyinkka Nyunyu Culture Center provides information about the art and culture of the Wurumungu living here.

5. Alice Springs

Alice Springs - also fondly called Alice - is the third largest city in the Northern Territory. Surrounded by seemingly never-ending desert, Alice is truly remote: it is located right at the geographical center of the Outback and Australia. Alice Springs’ Kangaroo Sanctuary is a great place to meet the popular animal. The rescue center offers protection and medical care for kangaroos on 76 hectares. Visitors may pre-book an evening stroll through the extensive grounds - speak to your Tourlane Travel Expert for more information. 

6. Watarrka National Park

The 71,000-hectare Watarrka National Park is home to Australia's largest gorge: the famous Kings Canyon . The spectacular canyon was created over 400 million years ago and its sandstone walls in places soar more than 300 feet into the sky.  The canyon’s watering hole, also known as the “Garden of Eden”, is essential for the survival of the animals living in the gorge. Watch the mountain kangaroo drinking under eucalyptus trees. Take one of three hiking trails that lead from the Kings Canyon car park through the impressive landscape. The Kings Creek Walk is the shortest and leads to a platform that offers visitors a closer look at the steep rock faces. More experienced hikers should try the Kings Canyon Rim Walk, which offers extraordinary views. 

7. Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park 

Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park offers some of the most famous attractions in the country. The park is a UNESCO World Heritage site and is considered by many to be the spiritual center of Australia. The heart of the park is Uluru (Ayers Rock) and Kata Tjuta. Both sites are sacred Aboriginal sites. The rock at Uluru, which is the same height as the Empire State Building, is a distinctive oval shape and rises unmistakably out of the desert landscape. During the course of the day, a fascinating play of colors unfolds on the red rock, which is particularly magnificent at sunrise and sunset. There are six official hiking trails around Uluru. If you want to learn more about the special relationship between Aboriginal people and the country, we recommend the award-winning Uluru-Kata Tjuta Cultural Center.

Equally impressive is Kata Tjuta, which translates to “many heads” - as soon as you approach the impressive mountains, you will understand what this name is all about. 36 hills form the Aboriginal sacred mountain range, the highest of which is over 3,000 feet. The national park also boasts incredible biodiversity: kangaroos, dingoes, emus and also wallabies have their home here, as well as 13 species of snakes. Take one of the many hiking trails to get in touch with nature.  Less

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