The ultimate Australia trip for backpackers. First a 17-day journey from Darwin down through Australia to Melbourne. Then a bus pass all the way to Cairns, so you can experience the Australian East Coast at your own pace.
Experience the best of the hinterland and east coast of Australia. The journey begins with adventures from Darwin to Melbourne. During the trip you will experience waterfalls, crocodiles, gain insight into Aboriginal culture, see the red “outback” around Uluru (Ayers Rock), Kata Tjuta (Olgas) and Watarrka (Kings Canyon), discover the Australian mining culture at Coober Pedy, see wild kangaroos and drive along the Great Ocean Road.
From Melbourne you travel on your own up the east coast to Cairns with your bus pass. Enjoy city life in Sydney, surf Byron Bay, drive around Fraser Island, sail around the Whitsunday Islands and snorkel or dive on the Great Barrier Reef off Cairns.
Day 1: Departure from Scandinavia
Departure from Scandinavia to Darwin in northern Australia as featured on proexchangerates.
Day 2: Arrival in Darwin
After arriving in Darwin you will go to your hostel where you will stay for one night. Darwin is the starting point for visiting the Kakadu and Litchfield National Parks. In addition, Darwin also offers a good nightlife, many cozy pubs and restaurants. During the day you can relax in the park along the Esplanade.
Day 3: Darwin-Kakadu National Park
You will be picked up at your hostel, and your 17-day unforgettable adventure through Australia begins. The first stop on the trip is the wetland Mary River, where we take a boat trip on the Mary River. There are more than 250 different species of birds and the highest concentration of saltwater crocodiles in the entire southern hemisphere. The afternoon is spent at Ubirr, which is considered one of the best places in all of Australia to see Aboriginal cave paintings. Ask the guide if he / she wants to tell the story of the Rainbow Snake and look forward to climbing Nadab for the best views in the area. ( F , M )
Day 4: Kakadu National Park-Litchfield National Park
The morning is spent at Gunlom Falls, where it is possible to swim. We have plenty of time to explore the area, so you can climb to the top of the waterfall and cool off with a dip under the waterfall afterwards. Gunlom Falls is fast becoming a favorite with visitors! In the afternoon we drive towards Litchfield National Park, where we stay overnight. ( F , L , M )
Day 5: Litchfield National Park-DarwinLitchfield National Park is smaller than its well-known big brother, Kakadu, and not as famous. But many of the waterfalls in Litchfield are at least as beautiful as in Kakadu and unlike in Kakadu you can swim in them all, as there are no crocodiles in Litchfield. We visit several different cases today and take a few walks before the trip at the end of the day goes back to Darwin.Day 6: Darwin-Katherine (via Nitmiluk National Park)
Once again, you will be picked up at your hostel in Darwin, and travel down through the Northern Territory of Australia towards Alice Springs. Katherine Gorge is the name of the most famous canyon in Nitmiluk National Park, but in fact there are 13 different water-filled canyons, all of which have been excavated by the Katherine River and are surrounded by high sandstone walls. It is a fantastic experience to go on a boat trip through this unique area (extra). ( F , M )
Day 7: Katherine-Banka Banka (via Mataranka)
At the small town of Mataranka we stop at the thermal baths. Every day, several million liters of 34-degree hot water are pumped up into these natural pools – is there any better way to start the day? Halfway between Darwin and Alice Springs is the legendary Daly Waters Pub, which of course we also visit. The pub is said to be the oldest pub in the whole of the northern territory, and although it is located in the middle of nowhere, it is strangely almost always full of people. ( F , L , M )
Day 8: Banka Banka-Alice Springs
South of Tennant Creek we come to Devils Marbles – or Karlu Karlu, as the Aboriginal people call the large round orange-colored granite blocks that lie on top of each other here in the middle of nowhere. Later in the day we cross Capricorn’s tropics, before arriving late in the afternoon at Alice Springs, Australia’s red heart. ( F , L )
Day 9: Alice Springs
Alice Springs is located almost exactly halfway between Darwin in the north and Adelaide in the south. The city was founded in 1871, because there was no point on a telegraph line between Adelaide and Darwin, and only here was a permanent water source found in the otherwise dry outback. The source is named after the telegraph manager’s wife, Alice. Initially, the small town was actually called Stuart, but in 1933 the name was changed to Alice Springs, because that was what everyone still called this small community. Today, nearly 25,000 people live in Alice Springs, making the city the third largest in the entire northern territory. Alice Springs is in every way a functioning provincial town, but due to its isolated location, there is nevertheless a very special atmosphere in the community. It is a true oasis – surrounded by a large, red nothing. We’ll be spending the next few days in Alice Springs, and after a few hectic travel days, you’ll probably enjoy not having to get up early! If you want to experience a bit of the city, we can highly recommend a visit to the “School of Air” and to the flying doctors, “Royal Flying Doctor’s Service”. Both will give you a sense of how isolated Alice Springs actually is – and not least how big the Australian outback is!
Day 10: Alice Springs-Watarrka
After a few days in Alice Springs, we continue our journey of discovery in Australia. The next stop is Kings Creek Station, which accounts for the majority of camel exports from Australia. In the Australian outback, there are so many wild camels that you actually export them to the Middle East! Watarrka Gorge cuts through the landscape like a miniature version of the Grand Canyon. Unlike the Grand Canyon, Watarrka is much easier to explore, so of course we take the long road to the top and pass along the road the idyllic permanent watering hole with the exotic name Garden of Eden. The view from the cliff edge is absolutely fantastic – and the walk is well worth it! In the afternoon, it is possible to buy, for example, a camel ride from Kings Creek Station or a helicopter ride over the area. ( F, M )
Day 11: Kings Canyon-Uluru
348 meters high. 10 km in circumference. Millions of years old. Like a desolate giant, Uluru lies in the middle of the Australian desert, surrounded only by small low bushes, tufts of grass and red sand. Take a walk around the mountain and visit the local cultural center and find out more about why this place is so sacred to the indigenous people. ( F , L , M )
Day 12: Uluru and Katja Tjuta
Uluru is most magical at sunrise and sunset. Today we are up early. Before the sun has risen, we find a good little hill overlooking Uluru. With our noses in the right direction, we are now waiting for the sun to rise. First, Uluru stands as a gray silhouette against the shining background. As the sun rises further, the color changes to almost screaming orange – sometimes with an almost pink hue – before the sun finally rises high in the sky, and Uluru has adopted the distinctive red color we recognize so well from the postcards. Just over 50 km from Uluru is Katja Tjuta, which according to the local Aborigines means “many heads”. Hike through the Valley of the Winds and be almost completely surrounded by these ancient stone roads. In the evening, the scenario over Uluru is repeated, but in the opposite order, when we see the sun go down behind the mountain. And do not miss this – the sunset is at least as magical as the sunrise! (F, L, M)
Day 13-14: Uluru-Coober Pedy
Coober Pedy is often called the world’s opal capital. We recommend that you do not walk backwards or run in Coober Pedy – or walk around town after dark – because there are so many mine shafts that have never been clogged! After this we drive through a fascinating desert landscape that does not change much even if we travel many hundreds of kilometers. A bus ride through the Australian desert is in fact the only way to really get a feel for how big the country is. Here it’s big, empty and deserted – like on Mars – and it’s amazing! We spend the night in Coober Pedy and like the locals we sleep underground. ( F , L , M )
Day 14: Coober Pedy-Wilmington
Of course, we visit an opal mine in Coober Pedy, and we try our luck – maybe we can be lucky to find a large opal that can finance the rest of the trip. At the end of the day we go to Flinders Ranges, where we spend the night. ( F , L , M )
Day 15: Wilmington-Adelaide
Flinders Ranges in South Australia is a fantastic natural area. Located right on the border between the arid outback and the more populated areas of South Australia, there is a rich wildlife here. There are plenty of permanent water holes, good shade from the sun, good hiding places and plenty of access to food. Pay special attention to the cute “rock valley villages”, which jump around, on and between the cliffs. We walk up to a lookout point that gives us a great view of the area. On the way to Adelaide we stop at a vineyard, where we taste a little of the delights. The night is spent in Adelaide. ( F , L )
Day 16: Adelaide-Grampians National Park
Through the beautiful landscapes of the Adelaide Hills, the journey now goes to one of Australia’s more neglected – but very fascinating – national parks: Grampians National Park. The mountains here have the most amazing shapes, and the wildlife is very rich. We hike to McKenzie Falls and enjoy the view from The Balconies. The night is spent in the national park. ( L , M )
Day 17: Grampians National Park-Twelve Apostles
We do another hike in the beautiful national park before heading to a completely different landscape. The coastline along the Great Ocean Road stretches just over 300 km west of Melbourne and is one of Australia’s most beautiful coastlines. We stop at the major highlights, such as Loch Ard Gorge, London Bridge and the Twelve Apostles. ( F , L , M )
Day 18: Great Ocean Road-Melbourne
The first part of your Australia adventure is coming to an end. The last day of the trip is spent on the Great Ocean Road, with visits to Apollo Bay and Lorne. Bells Beach and Torquay are some of the world’s most famous surfing beaches – which can be very convenient as you will soon be heading north and even more surfing communities. Your 17-day journey through Australia ends in Melbourne – and a new Australia chapter awaits! ( F , L )
Day 19- ?: Melbourne on your own
Your bus pass is valid all the way to Cairns, and where you stop along the way – and what you experience – is entirely up to you. You can get some of our ideas during our travel-yourself routes – you can of course also talk to one of our talented travel salesmen. All you have to do is start your return journey within 90 days of your arrival in Australia – your visa is valid for 3 months.
A night in a hostel in Darwin
Eight nights in a tent
Eight nights in a hostel