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Ocean, Outback & Rainforest Odyssey (Luxury Vacation)

Suggested months: April, May, June, July, August, September.

This epic Australian adventure is an amazing blend of the continent's remarkable outback, coastal and rainforest landscapes. You will start in World Heritage Listed Kakadu National Park, renowned for its prolific birdlife and Saltwater Crocodiles, followed by a visit to the Red Centre's famous Uluru, Kata Tjuta and Mount Conner rock formations. Arkaba Conservancy in the Flinders Ranges and Kangaroo Island will deliver incredible marsupial and birding experiences, before concluding in Sydney and Cairns to experience the Daintree Rainforest and Great Barrier Reef!

Highlights of this wildlife vacation include:

  • Visiting several habitats across Kakadu, with amazing Saltwater Crocodile and bird viewing
  • Towering sandstone escarpments with breathtaking vistas and incredible Aboriginal rock art
  • Touring with a traditional Uluru family to their homelands called Patji 
  • Walking through incredible sections of a 60,000-acre private wildlife conservancy (or option for safari drives)
  • Daintree National Park nocturnal walk, Daintree River Cruise and snorkelling the Great Barrier Reef
  • Nocturnal spotlighting in the Southern Highlands for iconic marsupials including Platypus and wombats
  • Walking on the beach with Australian Sea-lions at Seal Bay
  • Visit to Flinders Chase National Park; Remarkable Rocks and Admiral's Arch including Koala viewing

Minimum Suggested Trip: 22 days - 5 days Kakadu & Arnhem Land, 3 days Uluru & Red Centre, 4 days Arkaba/Flinders Ranges, 3 days Kangaroo Island, 4 days Sydney, 3 days Far North Queensland

Price Guideline: Typically, the budget for small group touring packages across Australia excluding flights is:
5-star: AUD $500 - $1,400+ per person per day (USD $350-$1,000+)
4-star: Minimum AUD $400 per person per day (USD $300)

Cairns Flinders Ranges Kakadu & Arnhem Land Kangaroo Island Southern Highlands NSW Uluru-Kata Tjuta & Red Centre
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Type: Private Charter

Duration: 5 Days/4 Nights

Logistics: Fly into Darwin (DRW)

Luxury Accommodations Included:
Bamurru Plains & Cicada Lodge

Top End Luxury Lodges

Combining the Mary River Catchment and Nitmiluk National Parks, this tour cover the spectacular landscapes with the premium lodgings in the area; Bamurru Plains and Cicada Lodge. Bamurru Plains is a birdwatchers paradise, with 236 recorded species including Magpie Geese, Plumed Whistling- Duck, Egrets, Ibis and Brolgas, but also teems with an amazing assortment of reptiles, marsupials and buffalo.

Skimming across the floodplains by airboat provides abundant opportunities to spot Saltwater Crocodiles and Agile Wallabies. The Nitmiluk National Park containts 13 immense gorges carved over the millenia by the Katherine River through the ancient stone country of the region with helicopter tours available to obtain a bird’s eye view of the spectacular landscapes and to allow access to remote gorges and waterfalls.

About Lords Kakadu & Arnhemland Safaris: Lords Kakadu and Arnhemland Safaris has been connecting guests to the Top End’s remarkable natural beauty and indigenous culture for over 25 years. Consummate bushman and owner, Sab Lord leads the team of advocates, active in protecting and preserving Kakadu & Arnhem Land, one of the most cherished ecosystems and untouched wilderness areas of Australia. The team’s passion for the region is infectious as is the connection with the land and the indigenous communities that call the area home. 

This relationship formed over many decades, allows access to a range of culturally significant sites. Combined with the vast unpopulated pristine landscapes, guests can not helped being moved and reinvigorated by this World Heritage Listed area.

Seasonal highlights

Autumn: Mar-May - Birds

Red-winged Parrots, Double-barred, Star, Crimson and Long-tailed Finches, Red-tailed Cockatoos, Pheasant Coucal, White-bellied and Black-faced Cuckoo Shrikes, Bar-shouldered and Peaceful Doves.

Winter: Jun-Aug - Birds

Mass flocks of Magpie Geese nesting, White-bellied Sea Eagles, Brahminy and Whistling Kites, Great Billed Herons, Azure Kingfishers, Plumed Whistling, Wandering Whistling and Spotted Whistling Ducks, Royal Spoonbills and Glossy Ibis.

Spring: Sep-Nov - Birds

High concentration of waterbirds, Brolga courtship dance, Great Egrets, Royal Spoonbills, Black-winged Stilts, Black-necked Storks (Jabirus), Comb-crested Jacana, Blue-winged Kookaburras.

Autumn: Mar-May - Land Mammals & Marsupials

Arrival of Black Wallaroo joeys, Antilopine Wallaroos breeding, Dingos, Agile Wallabies, Rock Ringtail Possums and Little Red Flying Foxes babies, Northern Brown Bandicoot, Brush-tailed Phascogale.

Winter: Jun-Aug - Land Mammals & Marsupials

Agile Wallabies, Dingos, Wilkins’ Rock-Wallabies, Black Wallaroos, Antilopine Wallaroos, colonies of Ghost Bats, Black and Little Red Flying Foxes and Blossom Bats.

Spring: Sep-Nov - Land Mammals & Marsupials

Concentration of Agile Wallabies around creeks and billabongs, Antilopone Wallaroos, Wilkins’ Rock Wallabies, Northern Brown Bandicoots, Brush-tailed Phascogales and Northern Quolls, Black & Little Red Flying Foxes, Ghost Bats and Blossom Bats.

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Type: Groups,Private Charter,Shared

Duration: 7-8 hours

Logistics: Take a flight from Darwin International Airport (DRW) to Ayers Rock (AYQ) via Alice Springs Airport (ASP)

Suggested Luxury Accommodation:
Longitude 131

SEIT Mt Conner 4WD Adventure (Outback Wildlife & Cattle Station Tour)

This quintessential Australian outback experience ventures out to a fully operational privately owned cattle station called Curtin Springs, located 100kms east of Uluru. Exploring this extraordinary environment by 4WD, guests  will visit Mt Conner, the third largest rock formation of Central Australia, discover an inland salt lake and learn about the European and cattle history of the region.

This vast outback property is home to a wide range of local wildlife including birds of prey such as Whistling Kites, Nankeen Kestrels, Black-breasted Buzzards and Brown Falcons, Camels, Red Kangaroos, Parrots, Emus and Dingos. Guests will be eager to share stories of the day during a magical sunset, whilst enjoying a glass of sparkling wine and three course meal back at the homestead.

About SEIT Outback Australia: This award winning small group tour company is based in the Red Centre of Australia, offering visitors unique, educational and immersive experiences in and around Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park. Kathy and Brett Graham commenced the business in 2009, to realise their vision of sharing their passion for the environment, wildlife and culture of this spiritually and environmentally significant desert region, borne out of a combined 20 years' experience touring in the centre.

Seasonal highlights

Autumn: Mar-May - Birds

Nesting occur for Black-breasted Buzzards, Brown Falcons, Australian Hobby, Nankeen Kestrels and Wedge-tailed Eagles. Large flocks of Zebra Finches are generally seen across the desert skies at this time of year along with Galahs. Crimson Chats, Splendid Fairy Wrens and Australian Bustards are nomadic and present if rains have occurred.

Spring: Sep-Nov - Birds

Black-breasted Buzzards, Black Falcons, Wedge-tailed Eagles, Nankeen Kestrels and Brown Goshawks nesting. Crested Pigeons, Mudlarks, Butcherbirds, Fairy Martins, Yellow Throated Miners, Crested Bellbirds, Chiming Wedgebills and occasionally the Spinifex Pigeons, Major Mitchell Cockatoos, Rainbow Bee-eaters and Red-capped Robins. Australian Ringneck Parrots, Galahs and Emus.

Autumn: Mar-May - Reptiles & Amphibians

Thorny Devils present before they burrow underground to hibernate for the winter. Long-nosed Water Dragons, Sand Goannas, Bearded Dragons, Central Netted Dragons and Black-headed Monitors.

Spring: Sep-Nov - Reptiles & Amphibians

Lizards emerge from winter hibernation. Blue-tongued Lizards, Perenties, Sand Goannas, Bearded Dragons, Central Netted Dragons, Long Nose Water Dragons and Thorny Devils all possible sightings.

More info

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Type: Groups,Private Charter,Shared

Duration: 7 hours approximately

SEIT Patji (A True Aboriginal Experience)

This adventure offers guests the privilege to accompany the traditional Uluru family to their homelands called Patji and spend time learning about the oldest living culture in the world. A truly unique and exclusive touring experience, Patji is located just outside of Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park south of Uluru.

Exploring this extraordinary environment by 4WD with your professional SEIT guide and Aboriginal host, guests will hear stories about life and family, long before tourism started in the region. This outback environment is home to birds of all sizes, from tiny but striking Zebra Finches, Wedge-tailed Eagles and even Bush Turkeys. Hear how these and other animals were crucial to survival in this desert climate where Thorny Devils and Sand Goannas roam.

Guests will enjoy an unforgettable sunset from a private Patji sand dune with expansive views over the iconic Uluru and Kata Tjuta, and as the desert darkens, keep an eye out for Red Kangaroos, Camels and Dingos that prefer the cool of the evening.

About SEIT Outback Australia: This award winning small group tour company is based in the Red Centre of Australia, offering visitors unique, educational and immersive experiences in and around Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park. Kathy and Brett Graham commenced the business in 2009, to realise their vision of sharing their passion for the environment, wildlife and culture of this spiritually and environmentally significant desert region, borne out of a combined 20 years' experience touring in the centre. 

Seasonal highlights

Autumn: Mar-May - Birds

Nesting occur for Black-breasted Buzzards, Brown Falcons, Australian Hobby, Nankeen Kestrels and Wedge-tailed Eagles. Large flocks of Zebra Finches are generally seen across the desert skies at this time of year along with Galahs. Crimson Chats, Splendid Fairy Wrens and Australian Bustards are nomadic and present if rains have occurred.

Spring: Sep-Nov - Birds

Black-breasted Buzzards, Black Falcons, Wedge-tailed Eagles, Nankeen Kestrels and Brown Goshawks nesting. Crested Pigeons, Mudlarks, Butcherbirds, Fairy Martins, Yellow Throated Miners, Crested Bellbirds, Chiming Wedgebills and occasionally the Spinifex Pigeons, Major Mitchell Cockatoos, Rainbow Bee-eaters and Red-capped Robins. Australian Ringneck Parrots, Galahs and Emus.

Autumn: Mar-May - Reptiles & Amphibians

Thorny Devils present before they burrow underground to hibernate for the winter. Long-nosed Water Dragons, Sand Goannas, Bearded Dragons, Central Netted Dragons and Black-headed Monitors.

Spring: Sep-Nov - Reptiles & Amphibians

Lizards emerge from winter hibernation. Blue-tongued Lizards, Perenties, Sand Goannas, Bearded Dragons, Central Netted Dragons, Long Nose Water Dragons and Thorny Devils all possible sightings.

More info

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Type: Groups,Private Charter,Shared

Duration: 4 Days/3 Nights

Logistics: Take a 2 hour flight from Ayers Rock Airport (AYQ) to Adelaide Airport (ADL). Choice of a 5 hour drive, 90 minute private air charter to Hawker or Regional Express (REX) commercial flight from Adelaide to Port Augusta (PUG), where guests will be picked up and take a 90 minute guided transfer to Arkaba.

Luxury Accommodation Included:
Arkaba Homestead & Deluxe Swags

The Arkaba Walk

This four day walk traverses the ancient Flinders Ranges where 600 million years of geological history provide spectacular backdrops to the rich array of birds, reptiles and marsupials that call this region home. From dry creek beds, isolated waterholes, lined with 1,000 year old river gums to craggy ridge lines and rolling hills covered in cypress pines to the ancient ramparts of Wilpena Pound, this is some of the most stunning walking country in Australia and provides abundant opportunities to spot Red and Western Grey Kangaroos, Wallaroos, Emus, Wedge-tailed Eagles along with numerous parrots, songbirds, bushbirds and raptors.

Accompanied by expert guides, walkers are provided with a fascinating insight into the ecosystems located across the 60,000 acre private wildlife conservancy, along with the stories of the indigenous inhabitants, early explorers and pioneer settlers.

Seasonal highlights

Autumn: Mar-May - Birds

Black-eared Cuckoos and Brown Songlark migration, Grey-shrike Thrush, Rufous Whistlers, Black-faced Cuckoo-shrikes, Galahs, Australian Ringnecks, Red-rumped Parrots, Emus preparing for the breeding season.

Winter: Jun-Aug - Birds

Emus begin laying their enormous eggs, Fan-tailed Cuckoo, Pallid Cuckoo Horsfield’s Bronze Cuckoo migrate to the area, Galahs, Elegant Parrots and Mulga Parrots.

Spring: Sep-Nov - Birds

Striped Emu chicks following their fathers, Wedge-tailed Eagle, Little Eagle, Black Kite and Brown Goshawk fledging, Rainbow Bee-eaters and Sacred Kingfishers arrive to breed. 

Autumn: Mar-May - Land Mammals & Marsupials

Western Grey Kangaroos are abundant, Red Kangaroos, Common Wallaroos, Yellow-footed Rock Wallabies, Dingos breeding and occasionally sighted but often heard.

Winter: Jun-Aug - Land Mammals & Marsupials

Yellow-footed Rock Wallabies basking in the sunlight across the rocky outcrops, Short-beaked Echidnas, Brush-tailed Possums, Western Quolls, Western Grey Kangaroos, Common Wallaroos and Red Kangaroos are abundant, grazing during the day.

Spring: Sep-Nov - Land Mammals & Marsupials

Short-beaked Echidnas, Red Kangaroo joeys born, Western Grey Kangaroos, Common Wallaroos feeding on shoots and vegetation, Fat-tailed Dunnarts and Stripe-faced Dunnarts breeding and very occasionally sighted.

Autumn: Mar-May - Reptiles & Amphibians

Thick-tailed Gecko (also known as the Barking Gecko) can be heard with it’s distinctive call, Masked Rock Skink, Tree Skink, Boulenger's Snake-eyed Skink, Bynoe's Gecko and Central Bearded Dragon, Yellow-faced Whipsnakes.

Winter: Jun-Aug - Reptiles & Amphibians

Tree Skink, Boulenger's Snake-eyed Skink, endemic Masked Rock Skink and Gidgee Skink, Inland Carpet Python can be occasionally, Streambank Froglet.

Spring: Sep-Nov - Reptiles & Amphibians

Breeding males for the Painted, Tawny and Red-barred Dragons exhibit brilliant colours, Central Bearded Dragons, Nobbi Dragons, Thick-tailed Geckos with their barking calls.

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Type: Groups,Private Charter,Shared

Duration: 2 days/1 night

Logistics: Return to Adelaide and take a 30 minute flight to Kingscote (KGC).

Suggested Luxury Accommodation:
Southern Ocean Lodge

Kangaroo Island In Style

This tour combines the two most popular full day landscape and wildlife experiences; Island Life and Flinders Chase Focus. Guests will be exposed to a broad range of elements that make this island so celebrated, including the the Island's history, ecology, wildlife, landscape and contemporary lifestyle. Regions visited include the Cygnet Valley, north coast landscape at Stokes Bay, central plateau, south coast landscape at Seal Bay to walk on the beach with Australian Sea-lions and the spectacular wilderness and the dramatic coastline of Flinders Chase National Park.

Iconic landscapes in the southwest corner will deliver endless photographic opportunities especially at Remarkable Rocks, Admirals Arch and Cape du Couedic. Key species regularly encountered are Koalas, Tammar Wallabies, Kangaroo Island Kangaroos, endangered Glossy Black Cockatoos, Short-beaked Echidnas, Australian Sea-lions, Long-nosed Fur-seals and a variety of bush birds and shorebirds and seabirds.

About Exceptional Kangaroo Island: Craig and Janet Wickham and their enthusiastic team have been sharing Kangaroo Island's secrets with guests since 1990 and have won numerous national and international awards for their tours. The family-owned operator specialises in deluxe wildlife tours which create an atmosphere where guests find themselves treated as friends, with tours run as a conversation not a commentary, promising good food, good wine and wildlife in the wild.

Seasonal highlights

Autumn: Mar-May - Birds

Glossy Black Cockatoos nest in large hollows, Yellow-tailed Black Cockatoos aggregate post breeding (they breed in summer), Red Wattlebirds abundant, Black Swans, Royal Spoonbills, Crested Terns, Caspian Terns, Crimson Rosellas.

Winter: Jun-Aug - Birds

Likely Sighting Chance: Black Swans nesting and cygnets abundant, Cape Barren Geese nest keeping an eye out for predatory Australian Ravens, Wedge-tailed Eagles, Scarlet Robins, Beautiful Firetails, Red-browed Finches, Striated Pardalote, Hooded Plover, Yellow-tailed Cockatoo and Crimson Rosellas.

Moderate Sighting Chance: Red-browed Finches, Swamp Harrier, Yellow-billed Spoonbill, Royal Spoonbill, Australasian Gannets, White-bellied Sea Eagle, Osprey.

Occasional Sighting Chance: Southern Emu-wren, in late winter the incessant calls of Western Whipbirds are heard, Southern Stone Curlew, Peregrine Falcons, Yellow-nosed Albatross with strong winds, 

 

Spring: Sep-Nov - Birds

Short-tailed Shearwaters migrate to the area, Superb Fairy-wrens breed and the spectacular blue males are a stunning splash of colour, New Holland, White-eared Honeyeaters, Eastern Spinebills. Rainbow Lorikeets, Purple-crowned Lorikeets. Chestnut-breasted Shelducks, Yellow-billed Spoonbills, Australian White Ibis and White-headed Stilts abundant.

Autumn: Mar-May - Land Mammals & Marsupials

Young Tammar Wallabies are weaned off their mothers and form their own social groups, Kangaroo Island Kangaroo joeys following their mothers around, Short-beaked Echidnas, Common Brushtail Possums usually have one joey at a time in Autumn.

Winter: Jun-Aug - Land Mammals & Marsupials

Short-beaked Echidnas breed where females attract up to 10 males, which follow the female in a procession. Kangaroo Island Kangaroos abudant grazing in open pasture adjacent to woodlands.

Spring: Sep-Nov - Land Mammals & Marsupials

Kangaroo and wallaby joeys emerge from pouches for the first time, Koala mating begins to occur from September onwards until March, Short-beaked Echidnas will feast upon eat large amounts insects and larvae during Spring.

Autumn: Mar-May - Marine Mammals

Australian Sea-lions bask on the sand in-between fishing trips to the continental shelf, Long-nosed Fur Seal pups can be seen playing around the rock ledges and pools at Cape du Couedic.

Winter: Jun-Aug - Marine Mammals

Australian Sea-lions prey upon fish, squid, cuttlefish, octopus, rock lobster, other small crustaceans and penguins. Sea-lion pups and territorial fighting between bulls can be seen. Bottle-nosed dolphins can bee seen around the bays and coves, often surfing waves on the south coast.

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Type: Groups,Shared

Duration: Full Day - Sydney

Logistics: Fly back to Adelaide (ADL) and connect through to a 1 hour 45 minute flight to Sydney (SYD).

Suggested Luxury Accommodation:
Park Hyatt Sydney

Southern Highlands Wildlife Day Tour

Just 90 minutes south of Sydney, guests will venture to the pristine bushland of the Southern Highlands, to observe several of Australia's most iconic species in the afternoon and evening. With the help of a knowledgeable and passionate Naturalist Guide, travellers will have the opportunity to spot Eastern Grey Kangaroos, Koalas, Red-necked Wallabies, Platypus and some of the 260 bird species that call the area home.

Travelling in a luxury 4WD vehicle to private farmland and bushland locations, the specialist guides will share information on this importance of the Great Western Wildlife Corridor, a key migration route between the southern Blue Mountains World Heritage area and Morton National Park further south.

After a hearty country-style dinner in one of Australia’s oldest country inns, the group will go night-spotting for some of the region's most curious crepuscular and nocturnal species, including Common Wombats, Sugar Gliders, Brush-tailed Possums and Tawny Frogmouths.

About Boutique Wildlife Tours: This family owned business has been offering unique wildlife viewing experiences since 2010 in the Southern Highlands, just South West of Sydney. The company has a strong focus on quality interpretation from guides, allowing for a high degree of customisation depending on guest interests, with the team committed to preserving the environments visited and supporting local and responsible businesses to maximise benefit to the regional communities.

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Type: Private Charter

Duration: 2 days/1 night

Logistics: Fly into Cairns (CNS) - 3 hours

Suggested Luxury Accommodation:
Silky Oaks Lodge

Daintree & Cape Tribulation Tour Ultimate Nature (Cairns & Great Barrier Reef)

This spectacular two day tour showcases the only place on earth where two World Heritage Sites meet; the Wet Tropics Rainforest and the Great Barrier Reef at Cape Tribulation. The Daintree National Park is the largest section of tropical rainforest in Australia and oldest continually surviving rainforest in the world. This region is home to thousands of species including around one-third of Australia’s frog, reptile and marsupial species, around two-thirds of Australia’s bat and butterfly species, over 400 bird species and 12,000 insect species.

The adventures include a ‘river drift’ snorkel, where guests will look for over 33 species of fish, turtles and eels in the Mossman river along with a snorkel of the Great Barrier Reef to spot soft and hard corals, sea turtles, reef sharks, myriads of tropical fish, eagle rays, giant clams and starfish. A visit to Cape Tribulation will provide the opportunity to spot the endangered Southern Cassowary.

An interpretative guided nocturnal walk will reveal a different side of the Daintree Rainforest providing the opportunity to spot wildlife such as the Daintree River Ringtail Possum, Northern Long-nosed Bandicoot and Northern Bettong. Wildlife enthusiasts will be captivated by the wildlife cruise of the Daintree River, full of opportunities to observe and photograph the region’s apex predator, the Saltwater Crocodile, along with iconic species such as the Boyd’s Forest Dragon, Ulysses butterfly, Spectacled flying-fox, White-lipped tree frog, Azure, Little & Sacred Kingfishers and Wompoo fruit dove.

About FNQ Nature Tours: After ten years of guiding nature and wildlife safaris in Northern Australia, James Boettcher established FNQ Nature Tours in 2015, with a firm belief that tourism is the key to the protection and conservation of this World Heritage area. The company offers tours designed for nature minded travellers desiring a personal, educational and interactive guided experience, whilst sharing the necessity of protecting the natural wonders and biodiversities of this world famous region.

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