Days
10
Price from
875GBP
Map of Melbourne to Alice Springs Overland including Australia

Hit the road past scenic coastlines and rugged Outback landscapes.

Travel from Melbourne on a 10-day overland odyssey covering Australia’s mighty south. Weave your way along the acclaimed Great Ocean Road past the Twelve Apostles and London Bridge, take a scenic hike to the Pinnacles in the Grampians National Park, marvel at the orange-rock spires of Warren Gorge and the unusual underground mining town of Coober Pedy, and wind up deep in the Outback. Discover the cultural harmony and raw beauty of Uluru, Kata Tjuta and Kings Canyon, and get an insight into the deeply significant First Nations history in the Red Centre and beyond. This classic road trip is all the best bits of southern Australia, with all the hassle taken care of, so you can focus on admiring the wide brown land in front of you.


Start
Melbourne, Australia
Finish
Alice Springs, Australia
Destinations
Victoria, Great Ocean Road, South Australia, Outback, Northern Territory, Uluru
Style
Original
Theme
Explorer
Code
POMAS
Physical rating
Ages
Min 18
Group size
Min 1, Max 24

Why you'll love this trip

  • Travel along Australia’s most acclaimed stretch of coastline with a scenic drive on the Great Ocean Road. This is one trip where you definitely want to call shotgun on a window seat.

  • Take a one-night pitstop in Halls Gap to discover the rugged beauty of the Grampians National Park. Go hiking up to the Pinnacles lookout, and marvel at the stunning MacKenzie Falls.

  • Immerse yourself in First Nations cultures with experiences including witnessing cave paintings near Mutitjulu Waterhole at the base of Uluru and viewing Aboriginal rock art at Yourambulla Caves.

  • See the best of Australia’s iconic Red Centre on guided walks around Uluru, Kings Canyon and the ancient red domes of Kata Tjuta.

  • 'Noodle' for opals, hang out with some rescued joeys and spend the night in a subterranean bunker in the Outback town of Coober Pedy.

Is this trip right for you?

  • This is a basic trip, covering the highlights of Australia's Great Ocean Road and Grampians, Flinders Ranges, and the Red Centre.

  • 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 is an Intrepid Basix style, and we often use mixed gender multishare accommodation. This means, the minimum age for the trip is 18 years old because minors aren't able to sleep in mixed gender rooms.

  • Temperatures in the Red Centre can 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.

  • On most days of the trip, you’ll spend several hours driving through very sparse areas of desert. Crank up the tunes and sit back to enjoy landscapes that you would miss in any other form of travel.

  • Group participation makes up a lot of this trip, so you'll be required to help with preparation of meals and cleaning up. These are the kind of tasks that bring a group closer together.

Itinerary

This itinerary is valid for departures from 01 Apr 2020 to 31 Mar 2021.
View the 2018 itinerary
Let’s get road tripping! Departing Melbourne, hit the road west to Geelong and the chilled-out surf town of Torquay. From there, begin the journey along one of Australia’s most beautiful and famous drives – the Great Ocean Road. This coast road at points is the only barrier between the lush forests of Victoria’s southwest and the cliffs down to the Bass Strait. Along the way, experience a guided walk through an ancient and rare temperate rainforest in the Otways, checking out the enormous trees that are native to the area. Stop for some koala spotting in Kennett River, then break for lunch in seaside Apollo Bay. In the afternoon, continue on to the Twelve Apostles and Loch Ard Gorge – these rocky landscapes braving the southern oceans are a sight to behold. Continue on your drive for another hour or so, spending the night in Warrnambool.
Accommodation
  • Motel (1 night)
Included Activities
  • 12 Apostles & London Bridge
  • Koala spotting - Great Ocean Road
  • Melba Gully Walk - Otway Ranges
  • Swim at Lorne (Summer months)
  • Loch Ard Gorge
Meals Included
  • Lunch
Special Information
The total driving time today is about 6.5 hours (approximately 450 km). The total walking time will be about 2 hours (approximately 2 km).
Begin the day checking out more of the Great Ocean Road's natural wonder on the Warrnambool foreshore, then take a drive into the Grampians National Park – an area full of rugged rock landscapes, scenic lookouts and rich in First Nations culture. During the day, you’ll visit the Brambuk Aboriginal Culture Centre to learn about an important period of this ancient culture known as the Dreaming, then hike up to the Pinnacles for impressive views across the Grampians. Keep an eye out for any native flora or wildlife that may pass you by as you walk. Tonight, head to Halls Gap for the evening, enjoying a traditional Aussie-style barbecue with your small group.
Accommodation
  • Motel (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Brambuk Culture Centre
  • Mackenzie Falls - Grampians
  • Pinnacles Walk - Grampians
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Dinner
Special Information
The total driving time today is about 6 hours (approximately 400 km). The total walking time will be about 4 hours (approximately 5 km).
This morning, hike to the base of MacKenzie Falls – the highest and arguably most impressive waterfalls in the Grampians – and check out other sites such as The Balconies and Reeds Lookout. Leaving the Grampians, pass through the town of Horsham and the enchanting Loch Lel – also known as the Pink Lake – before crossing the mighty Murray River and making your last leg of the journey into Adelaide. Most of the afternoon is taken up by the drive, but you’ll arrive in Adelaide around 7.30 pm, in time for late dinner with the group, if you’d like.
Included Activities
  • Reeds Lookout (The Balconies) & Boroka Lookout
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
Special Information
The total driving time today is about 7.5 hours (approximately 550 km). The total walking time will be about 2.5 hours (approximately 3.5 km).
You’ll be picked up from the YHA Adelaide at 8.30 am and head to the culinary epicentre of Adelaide – the Central Market. Meander through the markets to collect some local produce to enjoy a little later in the day. Next, visit Australia’s Aboriginal Cultural Institute, Tandanya. The First Nations precinct provides a wonderful opportunity to experience both traditional and contemporary Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander art. Leave South Australia’s capital behind and head north to the Clare Valley, home to some of the country’s best wines. Perhaps purchase a bottle (or two!) and pair it with your delicious lunch. After lunch, enjoy expansive views of the Flinders Ranges as you drive towards Wilpena Pound – a natural amphitheatre of rocky mountains. Experience the sunset at Wilpena Pound before settling into your accommodation for the night.
Included Activities
  • Wilpena Pound
Meals Included
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
Special Information
As this is a combination trip, the travellers in your group and your group leader are likely to change today.

The total driving time today is approximately 6 hours. You’ll be picked up from the YHA Adelaide at 8.30 am, so please arrive at least ten minutes before.
It’s an early (but worthwhile) start this morning as you enjoy a short and leisurely walk along one of the many tracks in Flinders National Park. Spanning a massive 450 km, you won’t be able cover it all, but your guide will choose the best trail for your group, depending on the time of year. Travel to the site of the Yourambulla Caves where you’ll have the opportunity to view some local First Nation rock art before stopping for lunch at Quorn. Spend the afternoon enjoying a couple of walks:
Warren Gorge provides stunning ochre rock faces that complement the blue skies. Keep your eyes peeled for the very well camouflaged local rock wallabies. Tonight, you’ll stay in the quintessential South Australian town of Quorn.
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
Special Information
The total driving time today is approximately 3.5 hours.
Leave Quorn in the rear-view mirror and head to Coober Pedy, the ‘Opal capital of the world’. Due to extremely hot temperatures in the area most of the town is constructed underground, with residents living in homes carved into the hillsides. Upon arrival take a guided tour of the town, an underground house and the opal mine (with opal cutting demonstration). The rest of the afternoon is free to explore. You may even like to try your hand at 'noodling' (fossicking) for opals. End the day with some rescued joeys at Josephine’s Gallery and Kangaroo Orphanage. Tonight, stay in a multi-share underground bunkhouse in Coober Pedy.
Accommodation
  • Underground Multishare (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Anna Creek Station
  • Coober Pedy Mine tour
  • Josephine’s Gallery and Kangaroo Orphanage
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
Special Information
Total driving time today is approximately 6 hours.
We’ll be honest, there’s a fair bit of driving today. From Coober Pedy travel past the Dingo Fence and Breakaways Reserve, and into the Northern Territory. Be prepared to ‘hold-on’ as your guide hits the indictor on the vehicle for the first time, leaving the Stuart Highway and turning left onto the Lassetter Highway towards Uluru. Make sure you have your Ipod fully charged and your neck cushion handy!
Accommodation
  • Permanent tented camp (with shared facilities) (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Dingo Fence
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
Special Information
Today driving time will be about 8 hours.
Rise early this morning and be rewarded with a glorious Uluru sunrise. While the day is still fresh, enjoy a walk around the base of this incredible sandstone formation, which is of great spiritual significance to the Anangu people. Walk to the cave paintings near Mutitjulu Waterhole at the base of Uluru where you will be in the hands of an Anangu guide who will share the stories of this unique landscape. This exclusive experience will give you an insight to the meaning behind Anangu art and traditional culture. The on-site Cultural Centre also houses an extensive collection of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander arts and crafts for you to browse. Head back to camp for lunch.
Accommodation
  • Permanent tented camp (with shared facilities) (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Uluru & Kata Tjuta National Park Entrance
  • Uluru Base Walk
  • Uluru Cultural Centre
  • Kata Tjuta
  • Maruku Arts cultural experience
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
Special Information
There isn't much driving today, about an hour in total between destinations. You will walk approximately 5 km.
Today, explore one of the Red Centre's greatest treasures, Kata Tjuta, a group of domed red rocks rising spectacularly out of the desert. Like Uluru, they’re sacred to the Anangu people and are believed to be 500 million years old. Return to camp for lunch before travelling to Watarrka National Park (Kings Canyon). Spend the night in an exclusive campsite inside the park.
Accommodation
  • Permanent tented camp (with shared facilities) (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Watarrka National Park Entry Fees
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
Special Information
Driving time is about 6 hours today, and you will walk approximately 2 km.
With its 300-metre high sandstone walls, hidden waterholes, fern forests, chasms, canyons and caverns, Watarrka National Park is central Australia’s answer to an oasis. The highlight attractions here are the Garden of Eden, the Amphitheatre and the Lost City – all sites you’ll get to visit on the Rim Walk. Following lunch, it’s back on the road for the onward drive to Alice Springs, where this adventure concludes.
Included Activities
  • Kings Canyon Rim Walk
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
Special Information
Driving time today is approximately 5 hours back to Alice Springs, and the Rim Walk is approximately 6km.

For the Kings Canyon Rim Walk it is a requirement that you have a minimum of 3 litres of water with you. Please consider bringing your own refillable water bottles.

Meals

8 breakfasts, 8 lunches, 7 dinners

Transport

All Terrain vehicle, Private vehicle

Accommodation

Camping (with basic facilities) (2 night), Camping (with shared facilities) (1 night), Dormitory (2 nights), Permanent tented camp (with shared facilities) (3 nights), Underground Multishare (1 night)

Included activities

  • 12 Apostles & London Bridge
  • Koala spotting - Great Ocean Road
  • Melba Gully Walk - Otway Ranges
  • Swim at Lorne (Summer months)
  • Loch Ard Gorge
  • Brambuk Culture Centre
  • Mackenzie Falls - Grampians
  • Pinnacles Walk - Grampians
  • Reeds Lookout (The Balconies) & Boroka Lookout
  • Wilpena Pound
  • Anna Creek Station
  • Coober Pedy Mine tour
  • Josephine’s Gallery and Kangaroo Orphanage
  • Dingo Fence
  • Uluru & Kata Tjuta National Park Entrance
  • Uluru Base Walk
  • Uluru Cultural Centre
  • Kata Tjuta
  • Maruku Arts cultural experience
  • Watarrka National Park Entry Fees
  • Kings Canyon Rim Walk

Dates & availability

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Important notes

1. Tour commences in Melbourne on Day 1 at 7 am and finishes in Alice Springs (Day 10) at approximately 6 pm
2. For the Kings Canyon Rim Walk it is a requirement that you have a minimum of 3 litres of water with you. Please consider bringing your own refillable water bottles.
3. Onward travel to be booked the following day

Essential trip information

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