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Wednesday, June 7, 2023

Six of Australia's greatest outback drives

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DARLING RIVER RUN, NSW

This route follows the Darling River for 940 kilometres diagonally throughout NSW, beginning at Walgett and ending at Wentworth the place the Darling meets the Murray. Indigenous heritage is astonishing: Brewarrina’s fish traps are among the many world’s first human buildings, Mutawintji National Park has excellent rock artwork, and Lake Mungo has archaeological websites 42,000 years outdated. This route additionally showcases the early European inland settlements that helped outline trendy Australia, corresponding to wool cities Bourke and Wilcannia. Time your journey for the middle-of-nowhere horseraces at Louth in August and also you’re in for a basic outback expertise. See visitnsw.com

STUART HIGHWAY, NT

xx6outback Six Best Outback Drives  ; text by Brian Johnston ;
cr: Tourism NT (handout image supplied via journalist, no syndication) Devils Marbles Conservation Reserve (Karlu Karlu)

Karlu Karlu (Devils Marbles). Photo: Peter Eve

You may hardly expertise the outback extra simply than on this sealed transcontinental freeway that runs 2720 kilometres from Port Augusta to Darwin through Alice Springs, and whose detours tempt you to nationwide parks corresponding to Litchfield, Kakadu, Nitmiluk and Elsey, the place you may float in sizzling springs. The route has all of the outback road-trip components, from gold-rush cities to characterful pubs and placing landscapes such because the MacDonnell Ranges and Karlu Karlu (Devils Marbles). Coober Pedy has quintessential quirkiness the place you will get underground and take heed to the inconceivable hopes of eccentric opal-hunting characters. See discovercentralaustralia.com

SAVANNAH HIGHWAY, QLD/NT

This epic 3700-kilometre journey hyperlinks damp Cairns to sun-baked Broome. Its western half is all sealed street, making the Cairns-to-Katherine part probably the most adventurous as, skirting the Gulf of Carpentaria, it swings throughout tablelands, grasslands and rust-red outback. Among highlights are volcanic landscapes and lava tubes at Undara, a cruise via Cobbold Gorge (although this requires a slight detour) and Nitmiluk (Katherine) Gorge. Former gold-mining cities, barramundi fishing, eccentric bush pubs, cattle stations, waterfalls and wetlands crammed with chook life are different incentives. You’ll want a four-wheel drive; persist with the May-October dry season. See queensland.com, northernterritory.com

KIDMAN WAY, NSW

This 820-kilometre south-north route cleaves straight via the center of NSW alongside the divide between outback and agricultural land and is a diversified, simple drive for individuals who don’t need purple mud on daily basis. Start off in Albury on the Murray River and head to Jerilderie, which is central to the Ned Kelly story, after which Riverina foodie hub Griffith. At mining city Cobar the outback takes over. In Bourke, the Back O’Bourke Exhibition Centre provides a superb overview of regional outback historical past and the significance of the Darling River to trendy Australian growth. See visitnsw.com

RED CENTRE WAY, NT

Although it is a tourism assemble slightly than historic outback route, you may’t beat the thumping nice rocks and glowing orange gorges that dot this 658-kilometre loop from Alice Springs across the Red Centre. All the icons are right here – Kings Canyon, Uluru, Kata Tjuta – however equally flamboyant are the West MacDonnell Ranges and Rainbow Valley. Remote cattle stations, refreshing waterholes, salt lakes and sudden remnants of historic tropical forest are extra refined distractions. Artilla or Mt Conner appears disconcertingly like Uluru from a distance. If you do not have a four-wheel drive, an extended sealed-road various requires some backtracking. See northernterritory.com

GIBB RIVER ROAD, WA

xx6outback Six Best Outback Drives  ; text by Brian Johnston ;
cr: Tourism WA (handout image supplied via journalist, no syndication) Gibb River Road at the Pentecost River

Photo: Tourism WA

This lengthy, bone-jolting monitor via the Kimberley hyperlinks distant cattle stations over 700 kilometres of unsealed street between Kununurra and Fitzroy Crossing. You’ll want a four-wheel drive, outback savvy and a number of other days; the one luxuries are at El Questro and Home stations on the street’s japanese finish. The route is studded with large boab timber and splendid purple gorges fed by waterfalls; swimming pools scattered with purple water lilies are a cool antidote to the warmth and dirt. The immense cavern at Tunnel Creek is related to Jundumurra, one of many nice figures of Aboriginal revolt in opposition to European settlement. See australiasnorthwest.com

Source: traveller.com.au

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