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Ghan Central Australia Experience

$6,499

This legendary Australian Outback rail journey is a spectacular way discover the wonders of this ancient land. Board the Ghan in Adelaide for a fully-inclusive and luxurious train trip through the Red Centre to Alice Springs, Uluru, Darwin, Kakadu, Litchfield and more!

Description

Ghan Rail from Adelaide to Alice Springs & Darwin – 15 days

The legendary Ghan travels through Australia’s Red Centre from South Australia to the Northern Territory on an extraordinary outback journey.

Your adventure begins in Adelaide and as you travel north you’ll witness wine regions and green hills gradually change to the rich red earth of the Flinders Ranges. Stop in Alice Springs, with local sightseeing of the area, then travel further into the heart of Australia and witness a breathtaking sunrise over Uluru and Kata Tjuta. From Alice Springs, continue on the iconic Ghan bound for Darwin and enjoy the off-train touring and onboard delights, with all food and beverages included in Gold Class.

Darwin sightseeing is also included, plus the highlights keep coming with fascinating trips to Kakadu National Park, Marrakai Plains, Litchfield National Park and more!

Why you’ll love this trip:

  • Enjoy fully-inclusive luxury aboard the famous Ghan in Gold Class
  • Extended stays in Alice Springs and Darwin with local tours included
  • See Uluru, Kata Tjuta, Katherine Outback Experience, wildlife cruises, 4WD safari & more
  • Take part in indigenous cultural experiences with Aboriginal guides
  • Feel the true spirit of this ancient land

Your Holiday Includes:

  • Ghan Train – Adelaide to Alice Springs to Darwin
  • 2 nights Ghan private Gold Class cabin
    • All meals onboard Ghan
    • FREE beverages throughout your train journey
    • Complimentary toiletries kit
    • Cabin steward service, in-cabin music and commentary
    • Use of Outback Explorer Lounge
  • 5 nights Alice Springs Hotel (3.5 to 4 Star typically)
  • 3 days / 2 nights Uluru, Ayers Rock, Kata Tjuta escorted permanent tented camping tour.
  • 5 nights Darwin Hotel (3.5 to 4 Star typically)
  • Alice Springs Half day Tour
  • West MacDonnell Ranges Escorted Coach Tour
  • Kakadu Park Escorted Day Tour – Jim Jim Falls & Twin Falls from Jabaru.
  • Litchfield National Park Luxury Day Tour
  • Darwin Hop on Hop off Coach Tour
  • Adelaide River – Marrakai Plains Escorted Day Tour

Departs Sundays:

2021 – 1 February to 25 March, 25 April to 10 June, 15 July to 10 September, 10 October to 30 November

Note: Dates are subject to confirmation at time of booking. Prices may vary depending on your departure date.

Get the Brochure:

Click here to view or download a copy of the brochure. The brochure includes more details and the full itinerary (where applicable).

Want to Stay Longer?

You can add extra nights in Adelaide and Darwin and there’s the opportunity to treat yourself and upgrade to 4 or 5-star hotels.

Ask us today about staying at other properties or adding more services. We are happy to design a holiday that will suit you best.

Travelling Solo?

Single traveller surcharge of approximately $2500. Rates will be confirmed at time of booking.

Booking Conditions:

All prices are per person, based on twin share, and listed in Australian dollars (AUD). The package is subject to confirmation at the time of booking and prices may change without notice. Booking conditions and cancellation fees apply.

Please read Australia & New Zealand Travel Company’s Terms & Booking Conditions prior to making a reservation. By booking any travel service with us, you have agreed to be bound by these terms and conditions.

How to Book

To make a booking please call Australia & New Zealand Travel Company on 1300 168 910 or email reservations@anztravelco.com.

You can also select a trip and request it via this website – please make sure you enter the quantity for the number of people travelling. In the ‘Additional Information’ field on the Checkout page, add your preferred departure date plus any other information that will help us process your booking, such as departure city and travel preferences.

No payment is required to submit an online booking request, but your booking is pending and no place is being held. Your booking status will be advised when you hear from our travel consultants. Bookings are normally actioned within 24 hours – Monday to Friday.

Itinerary & Booking Info

Travel Style

Rail & Tours with sightseeing

Itinerary

ITINERARY:

From Adelaide to Alice Springs to Darwin. (This tour operates in the reverse direction as below from Darwin to Adelaide – please ask for details.)

DAY 1: Overnight Ghan Train Adelaide to Alice Springs
Arrive in Adelaide and make your own way to the Ghan railway station to begin your journey to Alice Springs. Train departs at 12.30 pm. Please advise your travel consultant if you would like to spend one hotel night in Adelaide pre tour (extra expense). The journey from Adelaide to Alice Springs takes you through some of the most dramatic and breathtaking scenery on the planet. As you travel from south Australia up toward its red centre you'll be amazed at the sheer size and beauty of this spectacular country, Adelaide's green hills and country vistas transform into dramatic mountain ranges and rocky outcrops, as you head further north the ochre earth and blue skies contrast in a show of incredible natural beauty. As you arrive into the Red Centre of Australia you can still sense the strong pioneering outback spirit of Alice Springs.

Day 2: Alice Springs
Arrive in Alice Springs on the Ghan and enjoy your morning at leisure. Transfer to your hotel and overnight. Alice Springs is a remote town in Australia’s Northern Territory, halfway between Darwin and Adelaide, both 1,500km away. It’s a popular gateway for exploring the Red Centre, the country's interior desert region. Its 1872 origin as part of the Overland Telegraph Line (linking Darwin and Adelaide) is preserved in the vintage buildings and equipment at the Alice Springs Telegraph Station Historical Reserve.

Day 3: Alice Springs Day Tour
This morning you have some free time to explore Alice Springs at leisure. This afternoon enjoy the best touring sights of 'The Alice'. We will visit the School of the Air. We learn how children who cannot access schools are educated by radio and may have the opportunity to listen to and observe actual lessons in progress on air. Stop at the historic Telegraph Station, which marks the original site of the first European settlement in Alice Springs. Visit the Royal Flying Doctors Service, where you will see how medical aid reaches those who live in the remote 'outback'. We also make a stop at the Alice Springs Reptile Centre, where you can see up close and maybe touch some of the lizards and snakes that frequent Central Australia's semi-arid desert, such as the Perentie Lizard and the Thorny Devil. The tour concludes with a panoramic view of the township of Alice Springs and the MacDonnell Ranges from the top of Anzac Hill.

Day 4: West MacDonnell Ranges Day Tour from Alice Springs.
(Includes Lunch) Departing from Alice Springs at approximately 6.00 am, our adventure begins as we travel towards the mighty West MacDonnell Ranges. Our first stop is Ormiston Gorge, keep your eyes peeled for Perentie Lizards lazing along the banks and take a swim in the rock holes. Hike the “Ghost Gum Walk”, a 1.5 hour loop that takes in views down through the majestic Ormiston Gorge, before following the trail as it descends down close to the gorge and along the rocky floor and Ormiston Waterhole. Enjoy a BBQ lunch at Ormiston Gorge. Afterwards, we journey on to the Ochre Pits, a registered sacred site offering a unique experience to view the Ochre deposit still used to this day by the Traditional owners. See the natural ochres that have provided materials for Indigenous people for thousands of years. Travelling on to Ellery Creek Big Hole, one of the most picturesque swimming and walking spots in the West MacDonnell Ranges. Surrounded by high red cliffs and the sandy Ellery Creek, the waterhole has been carved out by thousands of years of massive floods and is an internationally significant geological site. The permanent water here made it a special meeting place for the local Arrernte people and is known to them as Udepata. Late in the afternoon we travel back to Alice Springs, arriving at approximately 5.30pm.

Day 5: – Alice Springs to Ayers Rock
After picking you up from your accommodation in Alice Springs bright and early, we hit the road on our adventure of a lifetime. (For those commencing the tour at Uluru we will collect you from the Outback Pioneer Hotel. Our journey begins heading south to Erldunda travelling through the Waterhouse and James Ranges with a stop at the Camel Farm for refreshments and a Camel ride if you're keen (own expense). On the way to Uluru we stop to view Atila (Mount Connor), a mesa tableland and the first significant rock formation of our trip. After a stop for lunch and our arrival at the Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park, we travel to the base of Uluru where your guide will lead you on an interpretive walk, hearing of the Aboriginal law and religion (Tjukurpa). Continuing on, we meet our local Aboriginal Guide who will provide a once in a lifetime authentic Indigenous cultural experience sharing stories and passing on traditional methods of painting that plays an important part in the sustainability of Aboriginal Culture. Starting with a walk to the cave paintings near Mutitjulu Waterhole, at the base of Uluru, be guided by the Anangu hearing stories of this unique landscape and the connection between the art, culture and connection to the land. We conclude at the Cultural Centre, where you may explore the displays and learn of the flora and fauna of this unique area. Experience the famous changing colours of Uluru at sunset, complete with sparkling wine and nibbles. It's a great time to kick back and contemplate the day and the vastness of the desert. Afterwards settle in at our remote private camp, complete with our Endless Star dining experience before retiring to your swag under the amazing night sky or your comfortable safari tent complete with beds. After dinner this evening, you may choose to view the Field of Light art installation (optional and additional expense). After being collected from a location close to your campsite you will be transferred to the Field of Light. Enjoy a walk through this incredible light display at your own pace before being transferred back to our campsite. The exhibition, aptly named Tili Wiru Tjuta Nyakutjaku or ‘looking at lots of beautiful lights’ in local Pitjantjatjara is Bruce Munro’s largest work to date. Overwhelming in size, covering more than seven football fields, it invites immersion in its fantasy garden of 50,000 spindles of light, the stems breathing and swaying through a sympathetic desert spectrum of ochre, deep violet, blue and gentle white. We highly recommend booking your Field of Light experience in advance as this does book out in advance. This can be done at the same time as placing your reservation with us. All Field of Light bookings are on request and will be confirmed within 72 hours of placing booking. Our reservations team will be in touch if there is no availability on your departure date, otherwise you are ready to experience this magical once in a lifetime experience. Meals Lunch (If joining tour from Alice Springs) – Dinner

Day 6: – Ayers Rock to Kings Creek Station
Rising early, take a short walk to a lookout close to our campsite to view sunrise over Uluru and Kata Tjuta without the hustle and bustle of the public viewing areas before heading off to Kata Tjuta for a walk through the "Valley of the Winds". Afterwards, we're off to Kings Creek Cattle Station for our second nights' private bush camp, complete with bush toilet and shower. With nobody else for miles, this camp has stunning views out over the George Gill Ranges and gives you a real feel for the outback. Dinner around the campfire makes for a very social time with another night out under the stars. Tonight, listen for the sound of dingoes howling in the distance while watching the desert sky light up above you. Meals Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner.

Day 7: – Kings Creek Station to Alice Springs
Today we head off to Watarrka (Kings Canyon) for a mind blowing 6km walk through the towering walls, crevices and plateaus of Watarrka. We'll visit the Amphitheatre, Lost City and the tranquil ‘Garden of Eden’. Later we start making our way back to Alice Springs travelling on a typical outback dirt road. We'll drop you back at your accommodation early evening and usually all meet later for a bit of a night on the town (Alice seems like the big smoke after 3 days in the bush). For those finishing at Uluru tomorrow, a nights accommodation in Alice Springs is included tonight. (For those finishing in Alice Springs, accommodation is included tonight). Meals Breakfast & Lunch

Day 8: – Free day Alice Springs
Today is a free day to explore Alice Springs at leisure. Alice Springs is a remote town in Australia’s Northern Territory, halfway between Darwin and Adelaide, both 1,500km away. It’s a popular gateway for exploring the Red Centre, the country's interior desert region. Its 1872 origin as part of the Overland Telegraph Line (linking Darwin and Adelaide) is preserved in the vintage buildings and equipment at the Alice Springs Telegraph Station Historical Reserve

Day: 9 Depart Alice Springs on the Ghan to Darwin.
The train races through the gold mining town of Tennant Creek as you're eating breakfast. It stops at the historic pioneering township of Katherine, where numerous excursion options await. You could enjoy a leisurely cruise in Nitmiluk National Park’s Katherine Gorge, and admire towering sandstone cliffs and crocodiles basking in the sun. Alternatively, head out to Katherine Outback Experience, owned by multiple Golden Guitar winner Tom Curtain. This fantastic show celebrates life on the land through real horse-starting and working dog demonstrations entwined with live music and humorous bush tales. Optional upgrades include a scenic helicopter flight over the 13 gorges of Nitmiluk National Park or a 90-minute fixed-wing scenic flight over both Kakadu and Nitmiluk national parks. Back on board, enjoy a late lunch as the rainforest of the Northern Territory outback rushes by the window. Pass through the old gold mining town of Pine Creek and Adelaide River, once a World War II military headquarters.

Day 10: Ghan Arrives in Darwin
The Ghan train will roll into the Northern Territory's tropical capital of Darwin in the evening. Please catch a taxi to your overnight hotel for next 4 nights. Darwin is the capital of Australia's Northern Territory and a former frontier outpost. It's also a gateway to massive Kakadu National Park. Its popular waterfront area has several beaches and green areas like Bicentennial Park. Also near the water is the Museum and Art Gallery of the Northern Territory, displaying Southeast Asian and Pacific art, plus a pearling lugger and other seafaring vessels.

Day 11: Darwin Hop on Hop off Bus.
Rich in cultural heritage, known for its balmy weather, and boasting an eclectic dining scene, the laid-back city of Darwin is a visitor's delight. Explore the sights from atop a double-decker bus and set your own pace around the Northern Territory's biggest town. This hop-on hop-off adventure hits all the top attractions, giving you plenty of time to explore sites like the Darwin Military Museum or get up close and personal with crocodiles in the Cage of Death at Crocosaurus Cove. Zip around the city, hopping on and off at your leisure to immerse yourself in Darwin's mix of frontier heritage and modern bustle. At the Aquascene Fish Feeding at Doctors Gully, watch the tide bring in an array of gentle fish species and wade into the water to feed them bread. Wander around the SKYCITY Casino, shop for arts and crafts at the Mindil Beach Sunset Markets, and check out the pools, waterfalls, and tropical scenery of the Botanic Gardens. Visit The Defence of Darwin Experience to discover Darwin's role during World War II, and check out the city's shopping, dining, and entertainment scene at the Parap Markets, Waterfront Precinct, and Fort Hill Wharf. Your pass lets you hop back on the bus as many times as you'd like, so be sure to keep it handy as you tour.

Day 12: Jim Jim Falls & Twin Falls from Jabaru.
The jewels of Kakadu National Park await. Departing from your Jabiru accommodation we travel to Twin and Jim Jim Falls. Explore Twin Falls Gorge which is accessed by 4-wheel drive track, a boat shuttle service and a rocky walking track and floating boardwalk. Once there relax on the sandy banks and admire the falls. Enjoy a picnic lunch before 4-wheel driving on to Jim Jim Falls where a walk through monsoon forests and over boulders takes us to the waterfall and plunge pool which are surrounded by 150 metre cliffs. Mid-afternoon we make our way back to the township of Jabiru where we return you to your nominated accommodation.

Day 13: Adelaide River – Marrakai Plains
Visit the fascinating wetlands of the Top End and get up close to fearsome saltwater crocodiles on the famous Jumping Crocodile Cruise. Just 60km from Darwin lies the Adelaide River, home to over 1600 Crocodiles and the location of the famous Jumping Crocodiles. Join this tour in the afternoon and travel down the Stuart Highway to the Adelaide River, enjoying commentary about the outskirts of Darwin along the way. Cruise the river and thrill as these awesome creatures launch themselves out of the water. The cruise will enable you to see these prehistoric creatures at close range. Afterwards continue to the Window on the Wetlands Visitor Centre for view over the Marrakai Plains and then it's on to Fogg Dam Nature Reserve to view a wetland ecosystem up close. It's also a good opportunity to spot for birds and other wildlife.

Day 14: Litchfield – Buley Rockhole – Tolmer Falls – Wangi Falls
Spend a relaxing day exploring the Table Top Range and wonder at the magnificent waterfalls. A full day introducing you to the main sights of Litchfield National Park. Leaving Darwin, we follow the Stuart Highway via the township of Batchelor to Litchfield National Park. Visit the main falls of the Park, you have the opportunity for scenic and interpretive bush and monsoon vine forest walks. View Florence Falls from a high vantage point before making your way down the stairs to the plunge pool below with an opportunity to swim, making your way back via the monsoon forest and open woodland. Head to Buley Rockhole for a swim the travel on to Tolmer Falls for a magnificent view of the water cascading down to the deep waterhole at the base of the waterfall. We venture to Wangi Falls for another opportunity for a swim in the large crystal clear pool and an optional steady climb through the rainforest to the top of the falls. It's a great day for taking fascinating photos, including the amazing stand of termite mounds, one of Litchfield National Parks unique sights.

Day 15: Darwin
Your tour comes to an end in the morning. Please catch a taxi to Darwin airport for your onward flights.

Please note: The day by day descriptions published are intended as an indicative guide only. Travel by nature is unpredictable. Weather patterns, road conditions, public holidays, travel restrictions and a multitude of other factors may necessitate itinerary changes that ultimately are for the client’s benefit. It is essential that clients are flexible and open minded in this regard.

How to Book

Bookings can be made by calling Australia & New Zealand Travel Company on 1300 168 910 or email to reservations@anztravelco.com.

Online booking requests may also be submitted via this website by selecting a trip. Please make sure you include your preferred departure date in the ‘Additional Information’ field on the Checkout page.

Bookings are pending and not confirmed until you receive a status update from an Australia & New Zealand Travel Company consultant.

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