Travelling the full length of the West Coast of Western Australia, this trip packs it in and is a classic expedition style of trip. Whether it's snorkeling with Manta Rays, exploring gorges of Karijini National Park or sunning around on a deserted and beautiful beach, the west coast is sure to please.All of this in adventure tour style, which means small groups, bush camping in wild places and heaps of adventure.
All about the 9 Day 4WD Broome To Darwin Tour
On this Broome to Darwin tour, our favorite moments are the Bush Camping and the long hikes. We think they will be yours too! You will travel the full length of the Gibb River Road, go hiking in Windjana Gorge, explore Tunnel Creek, hike and swim at Bell Gorge and Manning Gorge, Hike in Purnululu (Bungle Bungles), walk through Echidna Chasm, explore Cathedral Gorge, cruise on Lake Argyle, camp on an Island at Lake Argyle. Plus spend hours at Emma Gorge (El Questro), walk at Edith Falls (Nitmiluk National Park) and see the Boab Prison Tree. A wild west adventure tour! Check out the detailed itinerary below.
Walking and hiking on this Kimberley tour between Broome and Darwin need a high level of fitness, as you will be walking in hot weather conditions. We sleep in Swags, this is a bedroll made of canvas with a mattress inside. You can put your sleeping bag inside and zip it up. A perfect view of the stars. We do not provide sleeping bags for hire on this trip. In Darwin we have a deal with the NT general store, where you can get 10% off bags if you say you are traveling with us, they can get a sleeping bag for around $30 and donate to the Mowanjam Aboriginal Community at the end of the tour. The camping shop can give advise on the bag requirements for the time of year traveling, something like 5 degrees rated bag will be fine.
Our Broome to Darwin 4WD tour only runs between May and October during the dry season. We do get fully booked well in advance, we are currently taking early bird bookings for the 2018 season right now! During the Australian School Holiday periods in 2018, we have specific departure dates on our regular tours where families with children from 8 years of age are welcome to join these tours.
Have an off the beaten track exploration and book yourself onto this life-changing tour!
9 Day 4WD Broome To Darwin Tour Itinerary - 9 days
Broome to Windjana Gorge region
Leaving the comfort of the coastal community behind you will head east for what many consider to be one of the last great expanses of rugged wilderness areas remaining in the world, the mighty Kimberley Region of Northern Western Australia.
Your first stop is the famous prison tree near Derby, a huge hollowed out boab tree which was used as a prison in the early pioneering days. This is not only an amazing natural wonder but also gives an insight into the challenging relationship between the early settlers and Aboriginal people of the Kimberley.
Next head to Windjana Gorge, a huge gorge cut into the ranges over millennium to reveal beautiful scenery of high vertical cliffs, sandy beaches and meandering creek. You will do a hike at Windjana of about 4km and often see freshwater crocodiles swimming in the clear waterholes.
From Windjana it’s off to our first wilderness bush camp. Bush camping is a great experience whether you are an outback drover or first time city slicker, there is nothing like finding a great spot of wilderness in the middle of nowhere, setting up a campfire, cooking up a feast on the fire and then rolling out the swags under the Kimberley night sky.
Camp: Wilderness bush camp (tents are provide for those a little nervous about the under the stars experience.) Hike: 2-4 km. Meals: L, D.
Windjana Gorge region to Gibb River Road
With no roof over your head the breaking dawn is your new alarm clock so we rise early. The mobile phones get packed up with the camping gear as they become useless and we head off nice and early for your first activity, exploring Tunnel Creek.
Tunnel Creek is an amazing natural phenomenon and holds great significance to the local Aboriginal people, and getting there early normally guarantees you will have the place to yourself. It is a 750 metre long stretch of creek which runs underground through one of the oldest cave systems in Western Australia. Many Aboriginal rock paintings are present in the cave and it was a hideout of the Aboriginal warrior, Jandamarra in 1897.
From Tunnel Creek it's back on the Gibb River Road, a 700km long outback dirt road which runs between Derby and Kununurra. It’s not the easiest route, the track is often rough, there are a number or deep water crossings and a 4WD vehicle is essential. However it’s an amazing travel route as along the length of the Gibb River Road are vast tracts of wilderness and numerous rivers, gorges and waterfalls to explore.
The first waterfall is Bell Gorge. After a 20 minute walk a beautiful creek flows through the centre of this impressive gorge and cascades over numerous falls. A deep swimming hole at the base of the main waterfall, surrounded by shady ledges and high cliffs is an ideal lunch spot.
From Bell Gorge push on along the ‘Gibb’ for a little before finding the 2nd bush camp for the night, another remote wilderness location where you collect firewood, set up camp and settle in for the night.
Camp: Wilderness bush camp (tents are provide for those a little nervous about the under the stars experience.) Hike: 4 km. Meals: B, L, D.
Gibb River Road
Another day of adventure awaits. Emerging from camp it’s back on the Gibb River Road and onto Manning Gorge where you will spend most of the day. White sandy beaches with a Pandanus tree lined waterway, opening into a wide clear waterhole greets you only minutes after starting the walk. You must swim across the river before following a trail leading to the top of gorge. The gorge has a waterfall plus a deep wide swimming hole surrounded by granite cliffs and rock outcrops. It is a spectacular setting with hidden examples of Aboriginal rock art. The return route from Manning Gorge is a little less conventional as you swim and rock hop along the creek before reaching the main waterhole where it started.
Time and conditions permitting we may also visit Galvin Gorge and / or Adcock Gorge this afternoon.
Departing Manning we locate our bush camp on the sandy banks of the Gibb River under the gum trees.
Camp: Wilderness bush camp (tents are provide for those a little nervous about the under the stars experience.) Hike: 5 km. Meals: B, L, D.
Gibb River Road to El Questro Station
An early morning swim in cool waters of the Gibb River is a great way to wake up. From your camp the day starts with a short walk to a little known Aboriginal art site and your guide will explain the significance of the paintings.
From here it’s back on the the ‘Gibb’ where you continue on the easterly trek. Arriving at the Pentecost River you are presented with an incredible landscape of a wide river surrounded by the rugged Cockburn Ranges, a classic Kimberley scene. Here we drive the 4WD though the Pentecost River and driving a vehicle across a 60 metre wide outback river which is occupied by Salt Water Crocodiles is not something you do every day! It’s the only way across!
A short distance from the Pentecost is El Questro Station, home of more beautiful landscapes, one of which is Emma Falls. A hike through a spectacular gorge takes you to a very high and narrow falls with a deep cool plunge pool where we can swim.
Camp: Wilderness bush camp (tents are provide for those a little nervous about the under the stars experience.) Hike: 3 km. Meals: B, L, D.
El Questro Station to Purnululu National Park
One of the highlights of the trip is Purnululu National Park, more commonly known as the Bungle Bungles. Spend 2 days in this region, hiking and exploring the gorges and amazing landscapes the area contains. The long and dusty track into the ‘Bungles’ is spectacular, it winds its way through valleys, over ranges and across creek beds before arriving at what must be one of the world’s most unique landscapes.
After locating thecampsite, head off to Echidna Chasm to hike into the domes, following a creek to its source at a narrow passage buried within the ‘Bungles’.
The day ends with a spectacular sunset from a hill top vantage point.
Camp: National Park bush camp with basic toilets (tents are provide for those a little nervous about the under the stars experience.) Hike: 3-5 km. Meals: B, L, D.
Purnululu National Park
With an early rise you are able to take advantage of a spectacular Bungle Bungles sunrise and from your vantage point to watch the ‘show’ with a cup of tea or coffee and breakfast.
A short drive from the sunrise area is the trailhead for the Cathedral Gorge hike, a spectacular hike though the bee hive formations. The gorge itself is one of the most impressive geological formations you are likely to see anywhere.
From here there is the opportunity to take a scenic flight over the ‘Bungles’ (optional and at additional cost). From the air the ‘Bungles’ take on a completely new perspective and the open chopper is sensational.
Camp: National Park bush camp with basic toilets (tents are provide for those a little nervous about the under the stars experience.) Hike: 3 km. Meals: B, L, D.
Purnululu National Park to Lake Argyle
From the bush camp it's onto Kununurra, the first sign of civilisation you would have seen for a week. As you approach town the mobile phones start beeping and you can take the opportunity to catch up on the world with some free time in this classic outback town while your guide replenishes supplies.
From Kununurra it's off to Lake Argyle for what is regularly voted as a highlight of the tour. Lake Argyle is a huge freshwater lake teaming with wildlife, from wallabies in the rocky shores to freshwater crocodiles and birdlife. Board a boat where a local guide shows you the lake, there is time to swim before watching sunset from the water and then camp on one of the remote islands.
This is a great experience, knowing you are the only people on a single island in the middle of one of the most remote lakes in the world is unforgettable!
Enjoy the campfire, the sky is full of stars and the cool water is inviting to those brave souls who want a midnight swim.
Camp: Remote island bush camp (tents are provide for those a little nervous about the under the stars experience.) Hike: 1 km. Meals: B, L, D.
Lake Argyle to Keep River National Park
The sunrise from the island camp is unforgettable. Pack up camp, reboard the boat and head back to the vehicle. From Lake Argyle it's a push east towards the Northern Territory border and the Keep River National Park.
Keep River is another amazing location where there are a number of hikes to take before settling down for another bush camp.
Camp: Bush camp (tents are provide for those a little nervous about the under the stars experience.) Hike: 2-4 km. Meals: B, L, D.
Keep River National Park to Darwin
It's the final day of your big adventure. After arriving in Katherine and depending on the time available you will explore either Katherine Gorge or Edith falls, both offer more adventure, swimming and spectacular landscapes.
Your arrival into Darwin is usually at around 6pm and your guide will drop you to your accommodation. Hike: 2-4 km. Meals: B, L.
|Tour code: KATB|
Camping. If booked 90 days in advance.
Important NotesThings you need to know about this tour
- A good level of fitness is required as passengers are required to hike, swim, climb and scramble for several kilometers at a time over uneven surfaces, often in high temperatures. Travel is very remote and medical attention can be hours away. Please advise of any fitness and/or medical concerns when booking your tour.
- We camp in remote areas with few or no facilities (eg showers and toilets). All our equipment for camping is carried with us and set up and packed away by the tour group each day.
We can cater for vegetarians, vegans, gluten free and lactose intolerant passengers. Please understand we are on a camping tour so the food you may usually have may not be readily available. Please contact us when you book if you have any specific dietary needs.
- $120 pay on board fee for Lake Argyle cruise
- Travel insurance is recommended. Get a quote here.
- During the Australian School Holiday periods in 2018, we have specific departure dates on our regular tours where families with children from 8 yrs of age are welcome to join these tours. At other times the minimum age for travel on our 9 day Kimberley tours is 16 years. Family Friendly Dates for 2018. Broome to Darwin tour: 27 June to 5 July 2018, 4 July to 12 July 2018, 12 July to 20 July 2018, 23 September to 1 October 2018, 30 September to 8 October 2018, Darwin to Broome 1 July to 9 July 2018, 8 July to 16 July 2018, 15 July to 23 July 2018, 27 September to 4 October 2018 and 4 October to 12 October 2018. Family. A child is classed as 7 to 16 years old. Children must travel with at least 1 adult.
- Luggage is restricted to 15kg per person in a soft bag or backpack with an additional day pack.
- The itinerary is subject to change due to road and weather conditions as well as cultural and national park requirements.