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Itinerary For Australia’s Great Big Outback


by Nonna Ries



Welcome to Australia, the land of adventure and natural beauty. If you’re looking to explore the vastness of the Australian Outback, then you’re in for an unforgettable journey. With its stunning landscapes, unique wildlife, and rich cultural heritage, the Outback is a destination that promises to leave a lasting impression.


From the iconic red rocks of Uluru to the breathtaking coastal drive along the Great Ocean Road, this itinerary will take you through some of the most spectacular sights that the Australian Outback has to offer. Get ready to immerse yourself in the diverse wonders of this magnificent land.


Before embarking on this adventure, keep in mind that the Australian Outback is a vast and remote region, so it’s important to plan ahead and be prepared. Make sure to pack suitable clothing, including sun protection, and always carry a sufficient supply of water. Additionally, familiarize yourself with local customs and guidelines to ensure a respectful and responsible visit.


This 14-day journey will start in Sydney, a bustling metropolis known for its iconic Opera House and picturesque harbor. From there, we will venture into the heart of the Outback, exploring the majestic Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park, the vibrant city of Adelaide, and the scenic wonders of the Great Ocean Road. Get ready for an adventure of a lifetime!


Day 1: Arrival in Australia

Welcome to Australia! After a long journey, you have finally arrived in the vibrant city of Sydney. Take a moment to soak in the excitement and energy of this bustling metropolis.


Once you have settled into your accommodation, take some time to explore the city. Start by heading to the iconic Sydney Opera House, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Admire its unique architecture and stunning waterfront location. A walk through the adjacent Royal Botanic Garden will treat you to beautiful scenery and breathtaking views of Sydney Harbour.


No visit to Sydney is complete without a stroll across the Sydney Harbour Bridge. Experience the thrill of walking over one of the world’s most famous landmarks and enjoy panoramic views of the city skyline and the harbor below.


In the evening, venture to Darling Harbour, a vibrant entertainment precinct that offers a variety of dining options, live music, and stunning waterfront views. Indulge in delicious Australian cuisine or try some international flavors at one of the many restaurants.


End your first day in Australia with a leisurely walk along one of Sydney’s famous beaches, such as Bondi Beach or Manly Beach. Feel the sand between your toes and marvel at the beauty of the ocean stretching out before you. If you’re feeling adventurous, you can even take a dip in the sparkling waters.


After a day filled with excitement and exploration, unwind and get a good night’s rest, as tomorrow marks the beginning of your Australian Outback adventure!


Day 2: Exploring Sydney

Get ready to dive deeper into the vibrant city of Sydney today. Start your day by visiting the historic neighborhood of The Rocks, where Sydney’s colonial history comes alive. Stroll through the cobblestone streets, browse the unique shops, and stop by the weekend market to pick up some local handicrafts and delicious treats.


Next, make your way to the stunning Sydney Harbour and take a ferry to Taronga Zoo. This world-class zoo is home to a diverse range of animal species, including kangaroos, koalas, and even the iconic Tasmanian devils. Explore the zoo’s exhibits, attend informative animal talks, and enjoy the stunning views of the harbor from the zoo’s elevated location.


For lunch, head to one of Sydney’s bustling food markets, such as the Sydney Fish Market or the Paddington Markets. Indulge in fresh seafood, multicultural cuisines, and local delicacies that highlight the city’s diverse culinary scene.


In the afternoon, visit the Art Gallery of New South Wales, located in the picturesque Domain parklands. Immerse yourself in the world of art as you wander through the gallery’s impressive collection of Australian and international artworks. Don’t miss the opportunity to enjoy the panoramic views of Sydney Harbour from the gallery’s terrace.


As the day draws to a close, make your way to the vibrant neighborhood of Darlinghurst. This trendy area is known for its eclectic mix of bars, restaurants, and live entertainment venues. Have a delicious dinner at one of the trendy eateries or relax with a refreshing drink at a rooftop bar, taking in the vibrant atmosphere of Sydney’s nightlife.


After a day of exploration, return to your accommodation and take some time to reflect on the beauty and diversity of Sydney. Tomorrow, we will embark on a journey to the heart of the Australian Outback.


Day 3: Journey to Uluru

Today marks the beginning of our journey to the iconic Uluru, also known as Ayers Rock. After breakfast, we will depart from Sydney and catch a flight to Ayers Rock Airport.


Upon arrival, we will be greeted by the breathtaking sight of Uluru, a massive sandstone monolith that rises majestically from the flat surrounding desert. Take a moment to appreciate the sheer size and spiritual significance of this natural wonder.


We will then transfer to our accommodation near Uluru, where you can settle in and relax before embarking on an afternoon tour. Join a guided walk around the base of Uluru and learn about the ancient Aboriginal culture and stories surrounding this sacred site. Marvel at the intricate rock formations, listen to Dreamtime stories, and witness the changing colors of the rock as the sun sets.


In the evening, enjoy a delicious dinner under the starry Outback sky. Indulge in a traditional Australian barbecue, complete with mouth-watering grilled meats and local delicacies.


After dinner, take some time to gaze at the stars above. The Australian Outback offers some of the clearest and most mesmerizing views of the night sky. Spot constellations, learn about the Southern Hemisphere’s starry constellations, and be awed by the vastness of the universe.


Finally, unwind and get a good night’s rest, as tomorrow we will witness the magnificent Uluru at sunrise.


Day 4: Sunrise at Uluru

Today, we have the opportunity to witness the breathtaking beauty of Uluru at sunrise. Set your alarm early and venture to the designated viewing area, where you can witness the magical transformation of colors as the sun rises over the ancient monolith.


As the first rays of sunlight touch Uluru, watch in awe as the rock glows in shades of red, orange, and gold. This truly is a spiritual and awe-inspiring moment that will leave a lasting impression.


After enjoying the sunrise, join a guided tour that will take you on a more in-depth exploration of Uluru. Learn about the geology, cultural significance, and traditional stories associated with this iconic landmark. Marvel at the incredible natural formations, including the famous Kantju Gorge and Mutitjulu Waterhole.


In the afternoon, venture further into the Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park and visit the magnificent Kata Tjuta, also known as the Olgas. These massive domed rock formations are just as impressive as Uluru and carry their own cultural significance. Join a guided walk through the Valley of the Winds, where you can witness the stunning scenery and immerse yourself in the ancient spirituality of the area.


As the day comes to a close, return to your accommodation and reflect on the profound beauty and cultural significance of Uluru and Kata Tjuta. Enjoy a delicious dinner and regain your energy for the adventures that lie ahead.


Tip: Remember to respect the cultural significance of Uluru by adhering to the guidelines set by the Anangu people, the traditional owners of the land. Photography restrictions may apply in certain areas, and it is important to stay on designated paths and respect sacred sites.


Day 5: Exploring Kata Tjuta National Park

Today, we continue our exploration of the mesmerizing landscapes of the Australian Outback as we delve deeper into Kata Tjuta National Park. After breakfast, we will make our way to this incredible natural wonder.


As we arrive at Kata Tjuta, also known as the Olgas, prepare to be captivated by the towering domed rock formations that dot the landscape. These ancient formations hold great cultural and spiritual significance for the Anangu people.


Embark on a guided walk through the Valley of the Winds, a trail that takes you through the heart of Kata Tjuta’s awe-inspiring scenery. As you walk along, pay attention to the changing colors and textures of the rocks, as well as the unique plants and wildlife that call this place home.


Feel the spiritual energy of this sacred site as you discover hidden gorges, marvel at breathtaking panoramic views, and learn about the spiritual significance of Kata Tjuta from your knowledgeable guide.


After immersing ourselves in the natural wonders of Kata Tjuta, we will return to our accommodation in the late afternoon. Take the time to relax, soak in the serenity of the surroundings, or enjoy some leisure activities offered at our lodging.


In the evening, savor a delicious meal and reflect on the day’s experiences. Take a moment to appreciate the beauty and tranquility of the Outback as the sun sets and the sky fills with a million stars.


Tip: It is advisable to wear comfortable footwear and bring a hat, sunscreen, and plenty of water for your exploration of Kata Tjuta National Park. The weather in the Outback can be hot and unpredictable, so it’s important to come prepared.


Day 6: Visit to Alice Springs

Today, we leave the remarkable landscapes of Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park behind and make our way to the vibrant town of Alice Springs. After breakfast, we’ll say farewell to our accommodation and embark on our journey.


Alice Springs, located in the heart of Australia, is a unique and culturally rich destination. Known as the gateway to the Red Centre, this town offers a fascinating blend of Aboriginal culture, frontier history, and outback charm.


Upon arrival in Alice Springs, we’ll begin our exploration with a visit to the School of the Air. This innovative educational institution provides distance education to students in remote areas of the Outback. Learn about the challenges and triumphs of educating students across vast distances.


Next, we’ll venture to the iconic Alice Springs Telegraph Station, which played a pivotal role in the communication network during the telegraph era. Explore the historical buildings and learn about the hardships faced by explorers and telegraph operators in the early days of Central Australia.


In the afternoon, we’ll have the opportunity to immerse ourselves in Aboriginal culture at the Alice Springs Desert Park. This award-winning attraction showcases the flora, fauna, and culture of the region through informative exhibits, interactive displays, and live animal presentations.


As the day winds down, take a leisurely stroll through the Todd Mall, the town’s central hub. Explore the unique shops, galleries, and cafes, and perhaps pick up some authentic Aboriginal artwork or handmade crafts as a souvenir.


In the evening, enjoy a delicious meal at one of the local restaurants, where you can savor the flavors of Outback cuisine. Engage in conversations with the friendly locals and soak in the relaxed atmosphere that makes Alice Springs a special place.


After a day spent exploring the history, culture, and natural beauty of Alice Springs, find rest and relaxation in your accommodation, as tomorrow we embark on an adventure at Kings Canyon.


Day 7: Adventure at Kings Canyon

Prepare for an exciting day of adventure as we journey to Kings Canyon, a spectacular natural wonder located in Watarrka National Park. After breakfast, we’ll depart from Alice Springs and make our way to this breathtaking destination.


As we arrive at Kings Canyon, be prepared to be awe-struck by the dramatic sandstone walls that rise majestically from the desert floor. Lace up your hiking boots and get ready to explore the wonders that await.


One of the highlights of Kings Canyon is the Rim Walk, a challenging but rewarding hike that takes you along the edge of the canyon and offers panoramic views of the surrounding landscape. Marvel at the sheer cliffs, hidden crevices, and the striking beauty of the Garden of Eden, a lush oasis nestled within the canyon.


During the hike, you’ll have the opportunity to learn about the geological history of the area, as well as the cultural significance it holds for the local Aboriginal people. Keep an eye out for the unique flora and fauna that call this place home, including ancient cycads and elusive rock wallabies.


After the exhilarating hike, we’ll enjoy a well-deserved picnic lunch amidst the stunning natural surroundings. Take a moment to relax and soak in the tranquility of the Outback.


In the afternoon, we’ll explore the captivating scenery further by visiting the tranquil Kings Creek Station, a working cattle and camel station. Experience a taste of Outback life as you learn about the challenges of living and working in such a remote area.


As the day draws to a close, we’ll return to our accommodation and enjoy a delicious dinner under the stars. Share stories, laughter, and reflections on the unforgettable experiences of the day, creating memories that will last a lifetime.


Tip: Make sure to bring sturdy hiking shoes, a hat, sunscreen, and plenty of water for your adventure at Kings Canyon. The hiking trails can be challenging, but the breathtaking views and unique landscapes make it all worthwhile.


Day 8: Travel to Adelaide

Today, we bid farewell to the captivating landscapes of the Australian Outback as we make our way to the vibrant city of Adelaide. After breakfast, we’ll leave Kings Canyon behind and embark on a scenic journey.


As we travel towards Adelaide, we’ll pass through vast stretches of the Outback, taking in the stunning desert scenery and the ever-changing landscape. Along the way, keep an eye out for unique wildlife such as kangaroos, emus, and wedge-tailed eagles that may cross our path.


Arriving in Adelaide, you’ll be immediately immersed in the charm and sophistication of this cosmopolitan city. Known for its thriving arts scene, world-class dining, and beautiful parklands, Adelaide offers a refreshing contrast to the ruggedness of the Outback.


After checking into our accommodation, take some time to explore the city at your leisure. Visit the vibrant Central Market, where you can sample a variety of fresh produce, artisanal goods, and delicious local delicacies. Indulge in some retail therapy along Rundle Mall or wander through the beautifully manicured Adelaide Botanic Garden.


In the evening, be sure to explore Adelaide’s enticing dining scene. From trendy cafes to award-winning restaurants, the city offers a diverse range of culinary experiences to satisfy every palate.


If time permits, consider taking a leisurely stroll along the banks of the River Torrens or immerse yourself in the thriving cultural precinct of North Terrace. Visit the South Australian Museum, the Art Gallery of South Australia, or enjoy a show at one of the city’s renowned performing arts venues.


As the day comes to a close, reflect on the contrasting beauty of the Australian Outback and the vibrant city life of Adelaide. Rest and rejuvenate in your accommodation, ready for more adventures that await us in the charming city of Adelaide.


Day 9: Exploring Adelaide City

Get ready to immerse yourself in the cultural and culinary delights of Adelaide as we spend the day exploring this vibrant city. After a delicious breakfast, we’ll embark on a day of discovery.


Start your day with a visit to the Adelaide Central Market, a bustling hub of fresh produce, gourmet treats, and local delicacies. Take your time to wander through the stalls, meet friendly vendors, and sample some of the region’s finest offerings. From artisanal cheeses and juicy fruits to aromatic coffees and delectable baked goods, there’s something to satisfy every food lover’s taste buds.


After indulging in the flavors of the market, take a leisurely stroll through the picturesque Adelaide Botanic Garden. This tranquil oasis in the heart of the city features beautifully manicured gardens, historic buildings, and a vast collection of exotic plants. Explore the diverse plant species, relax in the shade of tall trees, and discover the enchanting Bicentennial Conservatory.


No visit to Adelaide would be complete without exploring the charming streets of North Terrace. Here, you’ll find a collection of cultural institutions, including the South Australian Museum, the Art Gallery of South Australia, and the State Library of South Australia. Immerse yourself in history, art, and knowledge as you explore these world-class institutions.


In the afternoon, take a stroll along the vibrant Rundle Street, a bustling strip lined with trendy boutiques, cozy cafes, and quirky shops. Take your time to browse the unique shops, grab a coffee or indulge in some retail therapy.


If you’re a wine enthusiast, a short trip to the nearby Adelaide Hills or the Barossa Valley is a must. Join a wine tasting tour and sample some of Australia’s finest wines while enjoying the breathtaking scenery of the vineyards and rolling hills.


In the evening, explore Adelaide’s thriving culinary scene. From hidden laneway bars to fine dining establishments, the city offers a diverse range of dining experiences to suit every palate. Savor delicious local produce, innovative dishes, and delectable desserts.


As the day winds down, reflect on the vibrant energy and cultural richness of Adelaide. Soak in the atmosphere of the city before returning to your accommodation, ready to embark on more adventures in the days to come.


Day 10: Road Trip along the Great Ocean Road

Today, we embark on an epic road trip along one of the most scenic drives in the world – the Great Ocean Road. After breakfast, we’ll set off from Adelaide, leaving the city behind as we venture into the breathtaking coastal landscapes.


The Great Ocean Road stretches for over 240 kilometers, hugging the stunning coastline of Victoria. As we make our way along this iconic route, be prepared to be spellbound by the dramatic cliffs, pristine beaches, and towering rock formations.


Our first stop will be at the picturesque seaside town of Port Campbell. Here, we’ll have the opportunity to witness the incredible limestone formations known as the Twelve Apostles. Feel the spray of the ocean on your face as you gaze at these majestic rock stacks rising from the Southern Ocean.


Continuing our journey, we’ll pass through scenic coastal towns like Apollo Bay and Lorne, where you can stretch your legs, enjoy a leisurely stroll along the beach, or even dip your toes in the refreshing ocean waters.


As we drive further, be mesmerized by breathtaking lookout points such as the Loch Ard Gorge, London Arch, and the Gibson Steps. Each of these landmarks offers its own unique beauty and captivating stories.


Take your time to admire the rugged cliffs, sandy beaches, and vibrant turquoise waters that make this coastline so spectacular. Keep an eye out for native wildlife as well, as koalas, kangaroos, and a variety of bird species can often be spotted along the way.


In the late afternoon, we’ll arrive at our final destination for the day, the lively town of Torquay. Known as the birthplace of Australian surfing, Torquay is home to world-renowned surf breaks and a vibrant surf culture.


After the exhilarating journey, find rest and relaxation in your accommodation in Torquay. Reflect on the day’s breathtaking coastal landscapes, and soak in the anticipation of the adventures that await us on the remaining stretch of the Great Ocean Road.


Day 11: Visit to the Grampians National Park

Today, we’ll leave the coastal beauty behind and venture into the magnificent landscapes of the Grampians National Park. After breakfast in Torquay, we’ll drive to this stunning natural wonder, ready for a day of exploration and adventure.


The Grampians National Park is renowned for its rugged mountain ranges, plunging waterfalls, and panoramic views. Our first stop will be at the Brambuk Aboriginal Cultural Centre, where we can learn about the rich Aboriginal heritage and culture of the region. Discover ancient Dreamtime stories, admire traditional artwork, and gain insights into the significance of the Grampians to the local Indigenous communities.


From there, we’ll embark on a hike along one of the many scenic trails in the park. Choose a trail that suits your fitness level and interests, whether it’s a leisurely stroll to a cascading waterfall or a challenging climb to one of the park’s panoramic lookouts. Along the way, be on the lookout for unique wildlife such as kangaroos, wallabies, and birds.


One of the highlights of the Grampians National Park is the breathtaking MacKenzie Falls. Lose yourself in the sounds of rushing water as you admire the cascading beauty of this magnificent waterfall. Capture the moment with photos or simply take a moment to soak in the serenity of the surroundings.


In the afternoon, we’ll enjoy a picnic lunch surrounded by the natural beauty of the park. Take in the fresh mountain air and relish the tranquil atmosphere as we refuel and rest before continuing our exploration.


Before leaving the park, make sure to visit one of the panoramic lookouts such as The Balconies or Reeds Lookout. From these vantage points, you can marvel at the sweeping vistas of the Grampians’ awe-inspiring landscapes, with its lush valleys, sheer cliffs, and distant horizons.


As the day comes to a close, we’ll make our way to our accommodation near the Grampians National Park. Reflect on the beauty and serenity of the day’s adventures, and marvel at the wonders of nature that surround us.


Tip: Remember to wear comfortable hiking shoes, bring sufficient water, and be mindful of your surroundings while exploring the Grampians National Park. It’s important to respect the natural environment and adhere to any safety guidelines provided.


Day 12: Journey to Melbourne

Today, we bid farewell to the breathtaking landscapes of the Grampians National Park and make our way to the vibrant city of Melbourne. After a leisurely breakfast, we’ll embark on a scenic drive through the picturesque countryside.


As we approach Melbourne, it’s hard not to be captivated by the city’s energetic vibe and diverse cultural scene. Known for its thriving arts, culinary delights, and endless entertainment options, Melbourne offers something for every traveler.


Upon arrival, we’ll start our exploration by taking a stroll along the iconic Yarra River. Enjoy the picturesque views as you walk along the riverbank, passing by the bustling Southbank precinct with its restaurants, bars, and lively entertainment venues.


Next, we’ll venture into the heart of the city and explore the vibrant laneways and arcades that Melbourne is famous for. Discover hidden cafes, boutique shops, and street art as you navigate through the maze of narrow lanes. Don’t forget to try a cup of Melbourne’s renowned coffee at one of the charming cafes.


Art enthusiasts will delight in a visit to the National Gallery of Victoria, which houses an extensive collection of Australian and international art. Marvel at the diverse range of artwork on display, from contemporary pieces to timeless classics.


No visit to Melbourne is complete without experiencing its food scene. Enjoy a delicious lunch at one of the city’s renowned eateries, serving up a melting pot of flavors from around the world. From gourmet street food to fine dining, Melbourne offers endless culinary options.


In the afternoon, take the opportunity to explore some of Melbourne’s famous landmarks, such as Federation Square, St. Paul’s Cathedral, or the Royal Botanic Gardens. Immerse yourself in the city’s rich history and cultural heritage.


As the day draws to a close, we’ll check into our accommodation in Melbourne and have some time to relax and recharge. Enjoy a delightful dinner at one of Melbourne’s trendy restaurants, soaking in the vibrant atmosphere of this cosmopolitan city.


Reflect on the contrast between the natural wonders of the Outback and the urban delights of Melbourne. Tomorrow, we’ll continue to explore the city and dive deeper into its unique charm.


Day 13: Exploring Melbourne City

Get ready to dive deeper into the vibrant city of Melbourne as we spend the day exploring its unique attractions and hidden gems. After breakfast, we’ll set out on a day of discovery in this cosmopolitan metropolis.


Start your day by immersing yourself in the dynamic atmosphere of Melbourne’s city center. Take a stroll along Swanston Street, known for its iconic tramway and lively street performers. Explore the eclectic shops and boutiques that line the streets, offering everything from high-end fashion to vintage treasures.


No visit to Melbourne is complete without venturing into its famous laneways. Lose yourself in the maze of narrow lanes adorned with stunning street art, hidden cafes, and quirky shops. Stop by Hosier Lane, AC/DC Lane, or Degraves Street to soak up the vibrant atmosphere and discover the city’s creative spirit.


Art enthusiasts will find a haven in Melbourne’s art precinct. Visit the renowned National Gallery of Victoria or the Australian Centre for Contemporary Art to experience the city’s vibrant art scene. Marvel at contemporary masterpieces, innovative exhibitions, and thought-provoking installations.


For lunch, indulge your taste buds at one of Melbourne’s famous food markets, such as Queen Victoria Market or South Melbourne Market. Sample a variety of fresh produce, gourmet delights, and multicultural cuisines. From mouth-watering street food to artisanal treats, there’s something to satisfy every craving.


In the afternoon, take a leisurely stroll through the Royal Botanic Gardens. Marvel at the diverse collection of plants, enjoy the serenity of the beautifully landscaped gardens, and soak in breathtaking views of the city skyline. You may even catch a glimpse of native wildlife, such as graceful swans or colorful parrots.


Continue your exploration by visiting Melbourne’s iconic landmarks, such as Flinders Street Station, Federation Square, and the Shrine of Remembrance. Each of these sites holds a unique place in Melbourne’s history and offers fascinating stories to uncover.


In the evening, soak up the city’s vibrant dining scene. Indulge in a multicultural feast at one of Melbourne’s renowned restaurants, sample craft beers at a local brewery, or unwind with a cocktail at one of the trendy rooftop bars that overlook the cityscape.


As the day comes to a close, reflect on the captivating diversity and cultural richness of Melbourne. Tomorrow, we’ll bid farewell to this captivating city, but the memories and experiences will stay with us forever.


Day 14: Farewell to Australia’s Outback

Today marks the final day of our unforgettable journey through Australia’s Outback. As we bid farewell to the captivating landscapes and vibrant cities, take a moment to reflect on the incredible experiences and memories we have made along the way.


After a hearty breakfast, we’ll have some time to soak in the last moments in Melbourne before we head to the airport. Take one last stroll through the city streets, savoring the vibrant energy and cultural diversity that Melbourne exudes.


As we board our flights, we can look back on the stunning natural wonders we have witnessed, from the majestic Uluru and Kata Tjuta in the heart of the Outback to the breathtaking coastal drive along the Great Ocean Road. The memories of the rugged landscapes, the encounters with fascinating wildlife, and the deep immersion into ancient Aboriginal culture will stay with us forever.


But it’s not just the landscapes that have left a lasting impression; it’s also the warmth and friendliness of the Australian people that have made our journey truly special. From the locals we met along the way to the fellow travelers who shared the same sense of adventure, we have formed connections and created memories that will endure.


As our planes take off and we bid farewell to Australia, let’s cherish the experiences we’ve had and the stories we’ll share with family and friends. Whether it’s the mesmerizing sunset over Uluru, the sound of crashing waves along the Great Ocean Road, or the taste of delicious Australian cuisine, each memory will remind us of the beauty and magic of the Australian Outback.


Although our journey is coming to an end, the spirit of adventure and exploration will continue to live on. As we return home, may we carry the essence of Australia’s Outback within us, forever enriched by the experiences and the connection to this remarkable land.


Safe travels, and until we meet again, farewell to Australia’s Outback!