12 Day Kimberley Explorer (including a taste of the Kimberley Coast)

Broome to Broome

The best 4WD adventure tour in the Kimberley! This is our most popular Kimberley Expedition as no Kimberley experience is complete without discovering both gorge country and the Kimberley coast. Immerse yourself in one of Australia’s more remote, pristine wildernesses – from the savannah to the sea this trip explore the highlights of the Kimberley in depth. Experience the land of the saltwater people on the Dampier Peninsula, get a taste of the Kimberley Coast in the Buccaneer Archipelago, take an iconic journey up the famous Gibb River Road and explore El Questro Wilderness Park, Lake Argyle and the World Heritage-listed Bungle Bungles.

Itinerary

Day 1 Beagle Bay, One Arm Point & Buccaneer Archipelago

The Dampier Peninsula is an extraordinary blend of pristine beaches and dramatic coastlines, rich in traditional Aboriginal culture. Travelling up the red 4WD track, learn about the region’s fascinating history from our guided commentary. Our first stop is the Beagle Bay Aboriginal Community, home of the Beagle Bay Church with its glimmering pearl shell altar, for morning tea. Soon we arrive at the One Arm Point Community, perched on the tip of the Dampier Peninsula, to visit the Community’s aquaculture hatchery, complete with barramundi, pearl and trochus shell. After a hatchery tour join Kevin, our local guide from the Ejai family, traditional owners of Jackson Island, at the family’s beach ‘bali’. Enjoy fresh damper cooked over the fire while Kevin shares the traditions, lifestyle and culture of his family. After lunch we head for the remote Cygnet Bay Pearl Farm. In 1946 Dean Brown skippered a rickety wooden lugger into an unknown frontier to discover this hidden paradise: his descendants continue to operate what is now the oldest Pearl Farm in Australia. Embark an extraordinary cruise through the Islands of the Giant Tides to experience the remarkable tidal flows of King Sound. As dusk approaches we reach our private Safari Camp, exclusive to our travellers and nestled on the beach overlooking the bay. In this stunning location, we can swim, explore the mangroves and perhaps catch a fish for dinner before a warm Kimberley sunset: truly a privileged experience. (LD)

Day 2 Cygnet Bay Pearl Farm, Kooljaman, Cape Leveque & Broome

Return to the pearl farm by boat, to gain an insight into this remote pearling industry on the Farm Tour, concluding with an in-depth pearl grading and appreciation session that will leave you feeling like a pearl expert! Come mid-morning, we travel across the peninsula to beautiful Kooljaman at Cape Leveque. You may like to discover the rugged red cliffs for which the area is famous or take one of the lovely walks. Alternatively you may prefer to enjoy a swim off the pristine beach. Driving back through the dusk, keep an eye out for wildlife before arriving at our private camp at approximately 6.00pm. (BLD)

Day 3 Tunnel Creek

As we travel through the remote and beautiful Kimberley landscape, our 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 we hit the Gibb River Road. Visit the fascinating Mowanjum Aboriginal Art & Cultural Centre for an insight into the culture of the Worrorra, Ngarinyin and Wunumbal tribes and their supreme spirit being, the Wandjina. The afternoon is devoted to exploring Tunnel Creek, with our local Bunuba guide. In this 750-metre cave system carved through the Napier Range, we discover stalactites, secret caves and a large variety of wildlife. It is here we also learn the legend of Jandamarra, an Aboriginal freedom fighter who used the tunnel as a hide-out in the late 1800’s. Don’t miss a refreshing swim in an idyllic waterhole. That night we settle into our first night under the Kimberley night sky. (BLD)

Day 4-5 West Kimberley Gorges

The Napier Range is over 350 million years old and home to the geological wonder of Windjana Gorge. Beneath gorge walls rising 90m, we spend the morning searching for freshwater crocodiles, local birdlife and indigenous bush tucker. In the afternoon we head off for 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! Spend the next day swimming in paradise: further up the Gibb River Road, we discover the cool waters of water lillie-laden Galvins Gorge and stunning Adcock Gorge. Amid the rugged beauty of Manning Falls we swim in deep clear waters, relax, explore wandering streams, uncover local wildlife and take a dip in the waterfall pools. Overnight we camp by a billabong on Mt Barnett Cattle Station. (BLD/BLD)

 

 

Days 6-7 El Questro Wilderness Park

Our journey up the Gibb River Road continues to the iconic El Questro Wilderness Park. Two nights in our private campsite here allows free time join one or more of the many activities on offer. We include a refreshing dip in the Zebedee Springs and walk into Emma Gorge while a cruise on Chamberlain Gorge, bush tucker walk or bird watching tour are amongst the many optional activities. You may choose to simply explore this beautiful wilderness park at your own leisure. (BLD/BL)

Day 8 Kununurra & Lake Argyle

We emerge from the Gibb River Road for a few hours free time in Kununurra. In the afternoon, travel onto 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. There is free time to join a sunset boat cruise on the lake (approx AU$100pp), visit the historic Durack Homestead Museum or take on one of the many bush trails to explore the area. (B)

Days 9-10 Purnululu National Park: Bungle Bungles

After a leisurely morning, head south down the Great Northern Highway to Purnululu National Park, home of the magnificent Bungle Bungles. Two nights here, staying in our new private Bungle Bungle Safari Camp in the heart of the Park, 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 11 China Wall & Fitzroy Crossing

Enroute to Fitzroy Crossing, we break the long journey with a visit the gold rush town of Halls Creek to see the remarkable China Wall. We also enjoy lunch at Marys Pool and visit the remote Laarri Aboriginal Art Gallery, before an evening by the Fitzroy River at Fitzroy Crossing. (BL)

Day 12 Geikie Gorge & Broome

A morning cruise through the majestic Geikie Gorge is a great start to our last day. Nature carved this wonder through the Geikie and Oscar Ranges during the Devonian geological period. Learn of the fascinating geology of this natural wonder and discover the huge array of wildlife including freshwater crocodiles, birds and fish. Explore Old Fitzroy Crossing and enjoy lunch by the river before we return to Broome in time to enjoy the sunset on Cable Beach. (BL)

The Facts

Tour Route Broome-Broome
Accommodation 12DKE Camping: Camping (4nts), Private Camp - shared facilities (6nts), Bungle Bungles Safari Camp - shared facilities (2nts)
12DKE1 Camping Plus: Camping (1nt), Private Camp - shared facilities (4nts), Bungle Bungles Safari Camp - shared facilities (2nts), Safari Cabin - with ensuite (2nts), Safari Tent - shared facilities (2nts)
Vehicles 4WD Vehicle
Fitness Advanced
Tour Code 12DKE
Duration 12 Days / 11 Nights
Tour Style Kimberley Expedition
Maximum Passengers 20 (Minimum 2)
Price 12DKE Camping: Adult $3595, Child (4-12yo) $3495 *No Single Supplement
12DKE1 Camping Plus: Adult $4095, Child (4-12yo) $3995 *Single Supplement $575
Departs APR-OCT: Saturdays
MAY-SEP: Thursdays
JUN-JUL: selected Tuesdays
Meals 11 x Breakfasts, 11 x Lunches, 8 x Dinners
Luggage Max 15kg in Soft Bag/Backpack & Day Bag (No Suitcases)
Validity 1 April 2017 to 31 March 2018

Inclusions

  • Two Tour Hosts – including an Experienced Kimberley Tour Guide and Tour Assistant (on all tours with 8+ travellers)
  • Meals as specified
  • Camping Accommodation (Upgrade Options available)
  • Coastal Safari Camp Stay
  • Community Entry Permits & National Park Entry Fees
  • Islands of the Giant Tides Cruise (or Kimberley Island Explorer), valued at $190pp
  • Bardi-Jawi Cultural Experience
  • Cygnet Bay Pearl Farm Tour
  • Guided tour of One Arm Point Aboriginal Community’s Aquaculture Hatchery
  • Indigenous guided Tunnel Creek experience
  • 1 Hour Ranger Guided Geikie Gorge Boat Cruise
  • Zebedee Springs Permit
  • Bungle Bungles Safari Camp Stay (2nts)

Options

  • 30 minute Scenic Helicopter Flight over the Bungle Bungles – allow approx $400 per person
  • Sunset Cruise on Lake Argyle – allow approx $100 per person

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