Experience the wild and rugged beauty of Australia's northwest tip on this 4WD journey through the Kimberleys. This is a region of breathtaking natural scenery, rich, brooding landscapes, and plentiful iconic wildlife – this is a taste of Australia at its most untamed. Explore the narrow rock passages winding through the Bungle Bungles, spot crocodiles sunning on the banks of Windjana Gorge, and discover the gorgeous swimming holes of El Questro and Katherine. For a trip that brings you face-to-face with Australia's vast horizons and immense wilderness, you really can't go past this 4WD Broome to Darwin adventure.
This is a chance to experience the raw and rugged, passionate face of North-Western Australia. The craggy paths and strong ranges inspire you to weave a memorable path through them. Be mesmerized by the beautiful Kimberly and explore it with a local guide. You will be head over heels for the region and also witness the same intense love for the place in your guides.
Starting from Broome, venture off-road for some time, checking out Tunnel Creek and the Napier Range. Then, taking the Gibb River Road, visit Windjana and Manning gorges, and enjoy plenty of time to discover the untamed natural beauty of El Questro Station. Paddle around in waterfalls, hike through gorges and access remote parts of this massive park on adventurous 4WD expeditions.
The red domes of the Bungle Bungle Ranges in Purnululu National Park form one of the most iconic Australian landscapes in existence. You'll have two whole days to explore the gorges and valleys of the park, not to mention soak up a few fiery sunsets. Tunnel Creek has a rich Aboriginal and bushranger history. Walk through the underground passage with your guide, learning about the culture and traditions of the First Australians.
Day 1 – Broome and Windjana Gorge
The town of Broome made its fortune from the pearling industry, though these days it's better known as an easy-going tourist town with a striking strip of coastline. You'll set off into the West Australian wilds pretty early today, so consider arriving a day or two early if you fancy getting to know Broome better.
After a bit of highway driving, the 4WD reaches the Fitzroy River; then, it's all off-road to the Napier Range. The main attraction here is Tunnel Creek, a vast cave system that extends 750 meters underground. It's from here that the indigenous renegade Jandamarra waged his rebellion against the colonial authorities, a legacy you'll learn more about on walk through the tunnel with your guide.
The total driving duration is 5 hs and a walk for 3 kilometres.
Day 2 – Windjana Gorge, Bell Gorge, & Mt Barnett
Today head to Windjana Gorge, once an underwater reef just 350 million years ago. During the wet season, a river flows all the way through it, but during the dry, it's more a series of ponds and billabongs. Set out on a bit of an explore, hopefully spotting a freshwater crocodile or two.
The western Kimberley region is full of endless stunning gorges that have to be discovered, and this afternoon is no exception. Bell Gorge is home to a stunning cascade of water flowing from the previous wet season rains that fall in the King Leopold Ranges. You'll enjoy an afternoon swim in the large plunge pool before making your way to camp along the Gibb River Road near Mt Barnett.
The total driving time today is around 4 hrs 30 min. The total walking distance is approximately 4 to 6 kilometres.
Day 3 – Manning Gorge & Mt Barnett
Spend the morning exploring Manning gorge and after stretching your legs on the hike in, you will be rewarded with a swim in a large rock pool at the base of Manning Falls. Then, explore Galvans gorge in the afternoon before heading back to camp near Mt Barnett to relax around the campfire.
The total driving time today is around 1 hr. The total walking distance is approximately 6 to 8 kilometres.
Day 4 – Gibb River Road & El Questro Station
Fording rivers and weaving through gorges, travel by 4WD along the wild and famous Gibb River Road – a 600-kilometre stretch of corrugated gravel road that winds right through the heart of the Kimberley. There's a fair bit of ground to cover today, so there is a few hours of drive time, but your guide will be breaking the journey up with lunch and at a few stop-offs along the way.
This journey includes the iconic Pentecost River crossing in the 4WD – how Australian is that?! Pass through the remote and extraordinary country as you travel through this historic part of Australia. At the end of the day, you'll reach the famous El Questro Station, where you'll spend the night camping under the stars.
The total driving time today is around 6 hours and approximately 350km. The total walking distance is approximately 2 kilometres.
Day 5 – El Questo Station
Wake up with the knowledge of not having to pack up camp before spending the day exploring the amazing sights of El Questro Station. It was established as an enormous cattle station and is now a vast wilderness reserve sprawled over more than one million acres. Camping out here, you'll really feel like you're in the middle of nowhere, albeit an extremely beautiful middle of nowhere.
The ochre-coloured massifs of the Cockburn Ranges frame the landscape whichever way you turn, and numerous natural springs offer plenty of opportunities for a refreshing cool off. Following a soak in Zebedee Springs, enjoy a short trek to either El Questro or Emma Gorge (where there's a very pretty waterfall).
Then it's another night camped out in El Questro, where you might choose to enjoy a well-earned drink at the station bar with your travel mates.
The total driving time today is only around 45 mins. The total walking distance is up to 6 kilometres.
Day 6 – Purnululu National Park
Say goodbye to El Questro and hello Bungle Bungles. Today you'll drive through the rugged landscape of Carr Boyd and the Durack Ranges into Purnululu National Park. This park is the home ground of the Bungle Bungles, a UNESCO World Heritage Site dominated by massive sandstone karsts that rear hundreds of metres above the surrounding grasslands.
You'll arrive at the bush camp in time to sit back and watch the sun set over the Osmond Ranges. If you've had enough of tent camping by now, you might want to spend tonight sleeping out beneath the stars snuggled up in a swag.
The total driving time today is approximately 5 hrs. The total walking distance is approximately 5 kilometres.
Day 7 – Purnululu National Park & Bungle Bungles
After breakfast, prepare for a full day of activities. Strangely enough, given their size, the Bungle Bungles only became known to white Australia in 1983 when they were 'discovered' by a film team who then had to fly over the top by plane to find a route in by land. Your guides know the way in, but you can sign up for an optional helicopter ride over the site if you wish.
At ground level, go on a walk through Echidna Chasm, a long and narrow ravine banked on either side by 200-metre high rock walls and enter the massive natural Amphitheatre of Cathedral Gorge.
As the sun goes down, head back to your overnight bush camp.
The total driving time today is around 1 hr. The total walking distance is approximately 5 kilometres.
Day 8 – Kununurra & Lake Argyle
This morning you will once again experience some serious 4WD action as you wind your way out of the Bungle Bungles. Take some time to have a look around the picturesque town of Kununurra. Then, in the late afternoon, travel down beside the Ord River to make camp at Lake Argyle.
You have the choice of relaxing in the famous infinity pool overlooking the magnificent Lake Argyle or appreciating it from the water by choosing to do a cruise (own expense). This vast body of water has been forged by the Ord River Dam, and barramundi, birds, and freshwater crocs thrive in these waters, and the islands look like they've always been there (they used to be mountains). As the biggest artificial lake in Australia, Lake Argyle is 18 times the size of Sydney Harbour!
The total driving time today is around 5 hrs 30 mins. The total walking distance is one kilometre.
Day 9 – Lake Argyle & Katherine
Not long after breakfast, you'll say goodbye to Western Australia as from here you'll cross the state border into the Northern Territory. The day is spent enjoying the last views of the Boabs you have fallen in love with as your guides make their way towards the last camp for the night just outside of Nitmiluk National Park in the Katherine Region.
The total driving time today is around 7 hrs. The total walking distance is around 1 kilometre.
Day 10 – Nitmiluk (Katherine) Gorge & Darwin
On the final day of the trip, stop at either the secluded gorge of Nitmiluk (Katherine) Gorge or take one last plunge into the cool waters of Edith Falls. In the afternoon, make your way to Darwin, where your adventure comes to an end at around 6:00 pm, so it's recommended you spend an additional night in Darwin.
The total driving today is around 4 hrs 30 mins. The total walking distance is approximately 2 kilometres.