15 Day Broome to Darwin, including Mitchell Plateau

This 15 day 4WD adventure takes on the popular Kimberley trail from Broome to Darwin, exploring the highlights of the Kimberley and Katherine en route. Journey the Gibb River Road and discover the West Kimberley Gorges, the Mitchell Plateau and El Questro Wilderness Park. Venture into remote Purnululu National Park to explore the World Heritage-listed Bungle Bungles and cruise on Lake Argyle. End the adventure with a cruise up spectacular Nitmiluk Gorge before arriving in Darwin.

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Highlights

Gibb River Road, Windjana Gorge, Tunnel Creek, Bell Gorge, Galvans Gorge,  Mitchell Falls,  Mitchell Falls Scenic Transfer Flight, Bradshaw Rock Art, Drysdale River Station, El Questro Wilderness Park, Zebedee Springs, Emma Gorge, Bungle Bungles, Echidna Chasm, Cathedral Gorge, Kununurra,  Lake Argyle Sunset Cruise, Katherine, Nitmilik Gorge, Edith Falls

Tour Summary

Tour Code

15BD

Fitness level

Advanced

Price

From $3995

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Tour Details

Tour RouteBroome-Darwin
Accommodation15BD Camping: Camping (11nts), Safari tent - shared facilities (1nt), Private Room - shared facilities (2nt)
15BD1 Camping Plus: Camping (6nts), Safari Tent - shared facilities (3nts), Private Room - shared facilities (4nts), Private Room - ensuite (1nt)
Vehicles4WD Vehicle
FitnessAdvanced
Tour Code15BD
Duration15 Days / 14 Nights
Tour StyleKimberley Expedition
Maximum Passengers20 (Minimum 2)
Price15BD Camping: Adult $3995, Child (4-12yo) $3895 *Optional Single Supplement $120
15BD1 Camping Plus: Adult $4490, Child (4-12yo) $4390 *Single Supplement $650
DepartsMAY-OCT: Selected Saturdays - see Departures tab below.
Meals13 x Breakfasts, 13 x Lunches, 10 x Dinners
LuggageMax 15kg in Soft Bag/Backpack & Day Bag (No Suitcases)
Private CharterAvailable On Request
Validity1 April 2018 to 31 March 2019
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More InformationWhat You Need To Know
Frequently Asked Questions
Reverse Itinerary15 Day Darwin to Broome including the Mitchell Plateau
Download Trip Notes

Day 1 Broome

You can arrive in Broome at any time today. An airport transfer is included if you advise us of your flight arrival. Spend the afternoon exploring at your leisure: Broome is one of the most interesting outback towns in Australia. From the age of the dinosaurs and the ancient stories of local indigenous people to the region’s role in early global exploration and the flourishing south sea pearl industry, this cultural melting pot has many a tale to tell. In the evening, perhaps get to know some of your fellow travellers with dinner and a Welcome Drink, while we prepare for the adventure that lies ahead. (D)

Day 2 Windjana Gorge & Tunnel Creek

Departing Broome at 7:00am, travel through the remote and beautiful landscape, as the guide shares stories of local history, people and the environment. Enjoy a morning tea break by the Fitzroy River and visit the Derby ‘Boab Prison Tree’. Before long we hit the Gibb River Road, and travel towards the Napier Range. Once a Devonian reef, these mountains are over 350 million years old and home to a diverse array of animals and plants. The perfect place to experience the stunning natural beauty of an outback oasis is the 3.5km geological wonder of Windjana Gorge. Beneath gorge walls rising 90m, we search for freshwater crocodiles, local birdlife and Indigenous bush tucker. After a picnic lunch, the afternoon is spent exploring Tunnel Creek with our local indigenous Bunuba guide, who will share ancient rock art and reveal the legend of his ancestor, Jandamarra, an Aboriginal freedom fighter who used the tunnel as a hide-out in the late 1800’s. In this 750-metre cave system carved through the Napier Range, we also discover stalactites, secret caves and a large variety of wildlife. A refreshing swim in an idyllic waterhole is a highlight of the day. Return to Windjana Gorge that evening to camp. (BLD)

Day 3 Silent Grove

The day is devoted to exploring Bell Gorge, a hidden highlight of the West Kimberley. This idyllic retreat, considered amongst the most beautiful in the area, boasts cascading waterfalls and crystal clear pools formed over millions of years – an easy place to while away a few hours! (BLD)

Day 4 Galvans Gorge & Mt Elizabeth

En route to the Mt Elizabeth Station Homestead, discover lily-laden Galvans Gorge, and the tranquil retreat of Adcock Gorge, pausing for a refreshing swim. Once arriving at Mt Elizabeth homestead you will be able to take in the natural beauty and isolation of the property. With creeks, gorges and diverse vegetation, you will be sure to enjoy the view and spend the day well relaxed. (BLD)

Days 5-6 The Mitchell Plateau

Our two day diversion to the majestic Mitchell Plateau is a highlight of the trip. Take on real 4WD country as we travel the rugged Kalumburu Road then turn off onto the Mitchell Plateau Track. After crossing rivers and passing through ancient Livistonia palm forests, we emerge from the savannah and onto the Mitchell Plateau. With two nights camping in the National Park, we trek to Little and Big Merten Falls, take a dip in pristine plunge pools and view Bradshaw rock art. There is an optional helicopter flight for a bird’s eye view of this extraordinary landscape. (BLD/BLD)

Day 7 Drysdale Station

Drysdale River Station is an oasis in the outback. This million acre, family owned and operated cattle station, runs approximately 10,000 head of cattle and lies in the North Kimberley on the Gibb River Road. Hanging out in the true blue Australian outback means you have all the magical scenery and feeling of isolation you could ask for. On arrival you may wish to explore the nearby surroundings or sit back and enjoy a cold drink in the beer garden, warm yourself around the log fire in the cool night air. (BL)

Days 8-9 El Questro Wilderness Park

We continue our journey up the Gibb River Road to the iconic El Questro Wilderness Park. Two nights here allows time to join one or more of the many activities on offer. This could include a refreshing dip in the Zebedee Springs, a trek into El Questro Gorge, Emma Gorge or a cruise on Chamberlain Gorge (own expense). Or simply explore this beautiful wilderness park at your own leisure. (BLD/BL)

Days 10-11 Purnululu National Park: Bungle Bungles

Head south down the Great Northern Highway to Purnululu National Park, home of the magnificent Bungle Bungles. Two nights here allows a full day to explore the highlights of this extraordinary National Park, the most famous of which, are the Bungle Bungle domes. Rivers created this landscape of unique orange and black striped ‘beehive’ geological formations over a period of 20 million years. Unbelievably, only the locals knew it existed until the early 1980’s; once discovered by others, the area was made a national park in 1987. We explore Echidna Chasm (2km), known for its towering Livistonia Palm trees, and take a short walk (2-3km) into stunning Cathedral Gorge, where towering rocks create a natural amphitheatre. There is time in the afternoon to take an optional scenic flight and enjoy a birds-eye view of the beehive domes (approx $400pp, own expense) to put it all into perspective. (BLD/BLD)

Day 12 Lake Argyle

Returning north we pause in Kununurra en route to the shores of the expansive Lake Argyle, the heart of the Ord River Irrigation System which has transformed this dry region into a lush agricultural oasis. Visit the historic Durack Homestead Museum or take on one of the many bush trails to explore the area. A sunset cruise on the lake is a stunning way to end the day. (BL)

Day 13 Katherine

Continue east along the Victoria Highway and cross the border into the Northern Territory as we travel to the outback town of Katherine, home to the spectacular Nitmiluk Gorge. (BLD)

Day 14 Nitmiluk Gorge & Edith Falls

A morning cruise through Katherine (Nitmiluk) Gorge is a great start to our last day. Nitmiluk Gorge is an inspiring natural wonder comprising 13 different gorges, carved over a millennia by the Katherine River. On the Nitnit Dreaming Cultural Cruise, we explore two of these gorges, and discover the customs of the traditional land owners, the Jawoyn people. After the cruise, enjoy a dip in Edith Falls then travel into Darwin, arriving at approximately 6.00pm. (BL)

Day 15 Darwin

You are free to depart Darwin at any time today. If you have more time we recommend you join another adventure into Litchfield National Park or Kakadu National Park – or both!

Live Availability

2018 TOURS

Departure CodeDepartsFinishesBook OnlineGuaranteed
15BD18042928 April12 MayCheck Availability & Book OnlineGuaranteed Departure
15BD18051312 May26 MayCheck Availability & Book OnlineGuaranteed Departure
15BD1806032 June 16 JuneCheck Availability & Book OnlineGuaranteed Departure
15BD18061716 June30 JuneCheck Availability & Book OnlineGuaranteed Departure
15BD1807087 July21 JulyCheck Availability & Book OnlineGuaranteed Departure
15BD18072221 July4 AugustCheck Availability & Book OnlineGuaranteed Departure
15BD18081211 August25 AugustCheck Availability & Book OnlineGuaranteed Departure
15BD18082625 August8 SeptemberCheck Availability & Book OnlineGuaranteed Departure

Camping

Night 1 Start the adventure at our very own Kimberley Traveller's Lodge, featuring twin rooms with shared facilities. Get to know your group with a welcome drink and a meal at the bar, as we prepare to head out into the Kimberley wilderness.
Nights 2, 3, 4,5 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11 & 12 Camping in National Parks and on Cattle Stations involves dome tents (single/twinshare), swags with fitted sheets & pillows with pillow cases. Stretcher beds are available for hire - $100pp, must be requested with our office prior to travel. Some on site ablutions have hot showers and flush toilets however on those nights in which we are camping in National Parks, the ablution facilities can be relatively basic.
Night 13 Enjoy the comfort of our private Katherine Safari Camp. Our Permanent Tents feature twin beds while the shared amenities, including toilets and hot showers, are located nearby.
Night 14 For our last night we check into a central Darwin city hotel, featuring private rooms with ensuites.

Camping Plus

Night 1 Start the adventure at our very own Kimberley Traveller's Lodge, featuring twin rooms with shared facilities. Get to know your group with a welcome drink and a meal at the bar, as we prepare to head out into the Kimberley wilderness.
Nights 2, 3, 5, 6, 10 & 11 Camping in National Parks and on Cattle Stations involves dome tents (single/twinshare), swags with fitted sheets & pillows with pillow cases. Stretcher beds are available for hire - $100pp, must be requested with our office prior to travel. Some on site ablutions have hot showers and flush toilets however on those nights in which we are camping in National Parks, the ablution facilities can be relatively basic.
Night 4 The private rooms at the Mount Elizabeth Station Homestead are basic but comfortable, with twin beds and shared facilities. Our stay here offers a wonderful glimpse into Kimberley cattle station life.
Night 7 Our upgraded accommodation at the remote Drysdale Station involves a basic room with double or twin beds and shared facilities. Relax in the communal area, sharing a log fire and adventure stories with the group.
Nights 8 & 9 The new Permanent Tents at El Questro Station offer an affordable upgrade option at the famous El Questro Wilderness Park. With twin beds, lighting and a quality ablutions block nearby, these tents ensure you have a comfortable nights sleep while still enjoying the outback essence of Kimberley camping.
Night 12 The Standard Rooms at Lake Argyle Resort each have a queen & single bed, private ensuite bathroom, a small fridge, tea/coffee making facilities. airconditioning and a private verandah to enjoy the beautiful surrounds.
Night 13 Enjoy the comfort of our private Katherine Safari Camp. Our Permanent Tents feature twin beds while the shared amenities, including toilets and hot showers, are located nearby.
Night 14 For our last night we check into a central Darwin city hotel, featuring private rooms with ensuites.

Inclusions

  • Experienced Guide
  • Meals as specified
  • Camping Accommodation (Upgrade Options available)
  • National Park Entry Fees
  • Indigenous guided Tunnel Creek experience
  • Mitchell Falls Scenic Helicopter Transfer
  • Zebedee Springs Permit
  • Lake Argyle Sunset Cruise
  • Nitnit Dreaming Cultural Cruise

Options

  • 30 minute Scenic Helicopter Flight over the Bungle Bungles – allow approx $400 per person
  • El Questro’s Chamberlain Gorge Cruise – allow approx $60 per person

Your Tour Guide will assist with arranging these optional activities while on tour.

We operate our 4WD Kimberley Expeditions in custom-built, 21 seat 4WD trucks with a PA system and built-in storage (no risky trailers!). These comfortable, strong remote area vehicles allow our small groups extra space (including standing room), are fully air-conditioned and fitted with adjustable air-vents, reclinable seats, map pockets and footrests. It is important that when booking a 4WD outback adventure in the Kimberley, you understand that the roads we travel on can be heavily corrugated. Rest assured, these are the conditions for which our 4WD trucks are designed.

What to Bring

It is essential that you bring a torch, shoes you don’t mind getting wet – and we mean fully immersed in water: ideally, wet shoes, sandals or old runners, broad-brimmed hat with sun visor for all round sun protection, sunscreen, swimming costume and towel, good walking/trekking shoes and a personal water bottle.

You will also need to bring a sleeping bag, even if you have chosen the Camping Plus option (15BD1) as these are necessary for the Camping nights. 10ºC sleeping bags are available for sale at $35pp – these must be requested with our office prior to travel and can be kept following your trip or donated to local indigenous communities.

Other recommendations include: warm clothes for the evening (particularly if travelling May-Aug), personal toiletries and first aid, with any personal medication required.

** Don’t forget the necessary luggage restrictions – due to limited space in the vehicles it is important that your luggage is in a small, soft bag (suitcases are not suitable) and weighs a maximum of 15kg.

Notes

  • Departures are subject to weather conditions and road closures: usually only a concern for tours in April.
  • Accommodation upgrades are subject to availability and On Request until Confirmed.
  • A few dinners are not included as there are excellent local a la carte options available, providing freshness, variety and choice – allow approx AUD $200pp for meals. (Allow a little more if you want a beer or glass of wine with dinner.)
  • This itinerary involves some clambering over rocks, wading in water by torchlight, walking on rocky creek beds and ascending/descending into gorges. A reasonable level of fitness and being sure on your feet is necessary to participate. Refer to the Fitness rating in The Facts.
  • Expect some early morning starts! It is nicer to walk in the cooler morning and travel in the vehicle during the heat of the day.
  • It is important that you appreciate the Kimberley Wild experience and the remote, vast nature of the areas through which we travel – this is a camping adventure into a remote pristine wilderness so expect the unexpected! Please ensure you read our What You Need to Know and Frequently Asked Questions pages.
  • Travel Insurance is compulsory for all travellers on all tours and details must be presented to tour guide before departure.
  • Are you over 70 years old? Due to the remote location and challenging nature of our extended camping tours it is essential for older travellers to review and sign our Medical Form to ensure you can participate fully in the itinerary.