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Adelaide to Darwin Explorers Way

14 Days
On request

FIRST-CLASS | SELF-DRIVE: Explore the Outback on this epic adventure. Drive through the interior of Australia from Adelaide to the top end, Darwin. Travel along the Oodnadatta Track, visit the underground town of Coober Pedy, and learn about Dreamtime and the indigenous culture in Ayers Rock and Kakadu National Park.

Get out there on one of the world’s most remote, yet rewarding roads for a true outback experience. This 14 day self drive between Adelaide and Darwin takes you to the Coober Pedy, Uluru, Katherine Gorge and Kakadu National park.

Spectacular Wilpena Pound is a highlight of Flinders Ranges National Park. You’ll have a full day at leisure here, during which you might enjoy a scenic flight over the rugged peaks of this area. Follow the famous Oodnadatta Track, with stops in the tiny communities of Parachilna and William Creek (populations 7 and 6, respectively). To get a different taste of the outback, try some kangaroo or emu at Prairie Hotel’s famous dining room. Visit Coober Pedy, the ‘Opal Capital of the World’ with a full day to explore. Take a tour of one of the hundreds of operating mines, and visit an underground Serbian Orthodox Church, bored out of solid rock.

Cross into the Northern Territory and spend two days in the shadow of Uluru, Australia’s most iconic monolith. Visit the 36 domes of Kata Tjuta (also known as the Olgas), and consider a walking tour with an Aboriginal guide, to gain an understanding of the traditional, sacred significance of these sites.

Deep in Australia’s Red Centre, there’s no other “Town like Alice”. Consider arriving a day or two early to explore it, before an early morning departure to Tennant Creek. This is one of the most remote towns in Australia, though it lies within easy reach of the Devils Marbles, precariously balanced boulders created by gradual erosion of the surrounding rock.

Continue north to Katherine, your gateway to the Top End. Visit breathtaking Katherine Gorge, then journey into Kakadu National Park and Yellow Water Billabong. This picturesque waterway is teeming with bird and animal life, including saltwater crocodiles. Consider a jumping Crocodile cruise on the Adelaide River, where you’ll see these fearsome creatures leap up to 2 metres out of the water. Return your rental vehicle in Darwin.

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14 Days
On request

Itinerary View Trip Map

Day 1

Adelaide to Port Augusta Approximately 308kms (191 miles)

Journey north to Port Augusta in the Spencer Gulf. You can visit the Wadlata Outback and the 80-hectare Arid Land Botanic Garden where you can learn about the plant, bird and animal life of the Outback.

Accommodation: Majestic Oasis Apartments or similar

Duration1 Night
Day 2

Port Augusta to Coober Pedy Approximately 540kms (336 miles)

An early start is recommended for your journey through the outback to the Opal Capital of the world.

Coober Pedy is a unique desert settlement built on a long tradition of opal mining that has attracted settlers from all over the world. Due to the extreme temperatures most people live underground in houses known as burrows, dug into the desert soils.

Visit underground museums, art galleries or try your hand at some opal fossicking.

Accommodation: Comfort Inn Coober Pedy Experience or similar

Duration1 Night
Day 3

Coober Pedy to Marla Approximately 235kms (146 miles)

Continue north along the Highway to Marla, primarily a service town and it visited twice a week by the historic Great Southern Railway train, The Ghan, which now frequently passes by directly across the road from the roadhouse.

Accommodation: Marla Travellers Rest or similar

Duration1 Night
Day 4

Marla to Ayers Rock Approximately 496kms (308 miles)

Today you will journey north crossing over the South Australia / Northern Territory borders and travel onto Ayers Rock. Located in Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park, Ayers Rock is the symbol of Australia

The Rock has its moods - changing colour depending on the time of day, dust, cloud cover and even from where you are standing. At sunset you can see the whole gamut when Ayers Rock/Uluru puts on a light show that changes its colours from red to orange to lilac in a matter of minutes.

Accommodation: The Desert Gardenor similar

Duration2 Nights
Day 5

Ayers Rock

Today is at leisure for you to explore Ayers Rock & surroundings.

Day 6

Ayers Rock to Kings Canyon Approximately 302kms (187 Miles)

Depart Ayers Rock and travel onto Kings Canyon.

Once at Kings Canyon the views from the Canyon rim are magnificent. It’s amazing how places as grand as Kings Canyon and Ayers Rock also guard smaller, sensitive pockets created by Nature and Man. In the case of Ayers Rock there are sacred Aboriginal sites, while at Kings Canyon there is the Garden of Eden and the Lost City.

Spend the later afternoon walking through the base of the Canyon, or for those that are fit why not climb to the rim of the Canyon for spectacular views

Accommodation: Discovery Kings Canyon Resort or similar

Duration1 Night
Day 7

Kings Canyon to Alice Springs Approximately 471kms (293 Miles)

Today you will journey through grasslands and granite country, and then across the Finke River and on to Australia’s most famous outback town, Alice Springs.

Alice Springs has been an important stop for travellers since the early Overland Telegraph days of the 1800s. Today ‘The Alice’ has developed into such a significant town that it is more than just an oasis in the Outback. The early history of Alice Springs is carefully preserved in several museums. A visit to the School of the Air and the Royal Flying Doctor Service will show you two of the facilities necessary for everyday life in remote locations.

Accommodation: Stay at Alice Springs or similar

Duration2 Nights
Day 8

Alice Springs

Today is at leisure for you to explore Alice Springs & surroundings.

Day 9

Alice Springs to Tennant Creek Approximately 506km (314 Miles)

Another early departure is recommended this morning for the long drive north to Tennant Creek.

Today, Tennant Creek is central Australia’s second largest town and home to 4000 people. The township of Tennant Creek is a modern outback gold mining town and the centre for the Barkly pastoral industry. The Creek itself is 12kms (7 miles) north of the town, and this is where the Overland Telegraph Station was built in 1872. The historic stone buildings can still be visited today.

Accommodation: Bluestone Motor Inn or similar

Duration1 Night
Day 10

Tennant Creek to Katherine Approximately 677km (417 Miles)

A big day of driving today so again a very early start is recommended.

Depart Tennant Creek and journey north to Katherine. This section of the Highway encompasses the transition from the arid Red Centre to the tropical Top end.

The Katherine Region boasts the magnificent Nitmiluk (Katherine Gorge) National Park. Around Katherine you will discover such treasures as Borroloola and the Gulf Region across the Roper River - Elsey National Park, Mataranka Thermal Pools, the majestic scenery of the Victoria River Region, Pine Creek and the Douglas and Daly River areas.

Accommodation: Beagle Motor Inn or similar

Duration2 Nights
Day 11


Today is at leisure for you to explore Katherine & surroundings.

Day 12

Katherine To Kakadu National Park Approximately 300km (186 Miles)

Travel via Pine Creek to Kakadu National Park.

Kakadu is one of four Australian sites included on the World Heritage List for both cultural and natural outstanding universal values.

The floodplains of Kakadu illustrate the ecological effects of sea-level change in northern Australia. The park features great natural beauty and sweeping landscapes, as well as internationally important wetlands.

Accommodation: Anbinik Kakadu Resort or similar

Duration2 Nights
Day 13

Kakadu National Park

Today is free for you to explore Kakadu National Park.

Day 14

Kakadu National Park To Darwin Approximately 257km (160 Miles)

There’s a lot to see on the road between Kakadu National Park and Darwin - from the clouds of waterfowl on wetlands to jumping crocodiles. On your journey you may wish to enjoy a cruise on the Adelaide River flood plains before you continue on the final leg of your journey to Darwin.

Darwin is the bustling tropical capital of the Northern Territory. Situated on the edge of a harbour bigger than Sydney’s, Darwin is a beautiful, fascinating tropical city – a melting pot of people and cultures that prides itself in its unique and friendly laid-back lifestyle.

Other Information




  • 13 nights first-class accommodation
  • Car Rental for 14 days with unlimited kilometres and mandatory vehicle insurance


  • Travel Insurance
  • International and domestic airfare & airfare taxes
  • One Way Fees (paid directly to Hertz in Australia,  your Goway Agent will advise the rate – generally around $1500-$1700 AUD as a guide)
  • Visa fees if applicable
  • Meals and beverages not specifically indicated
  • Optional excursions
  • Park fees unless stated
  • Items of a personal nature
  • Gratuities


It is the wet season in the northern part of the Nothern Terriroty from late October - March, driving conditions can become hazardous due to rainfall and many roads may be impassable. Not all rental vehicles are permitted on select roads in this itinerary. Please check with your Goway Agent for more details or alternative itineraries.


Prices are "from" per person based on twin/double share accommodation and for travel in low season. Seasonal surcharges and blackout dates may apply. Limited seat/spaces and all pricing is subject to change and availability. Rates for single or triple travellers are available on request - please enquire.

10 Sep 2024
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