Map of Top End & Kakadu Explorer including Australia

Come face to face with the staggering scenery of the Top End

Rugged, remote and absolutely remarkable – there’s nowhere on earth like Australia’s Top End. Over six days, a knowledgeable local leader will introduce you to the awe-inspiring landscapes of the Northern Territory, and at the end of each day you’ll retire to comfortable hotels. Join an Aboriginal guide and cruise through Kakadu National Park, discover some of the world’s oldest art in Nourlangie, float past the towering sandstone walls of Katherine Gorge and explore the waterfalls and pools of Litchfield National Park. From fantastic wildlife to thousands of years of Aboriginal culture, this corner of Australia is truly something special.


Start
Darwin, Australia
Finish
Darwin, Australia
Destination
Australia
Style
Comfort
Theme
Explorer
Code
POKK
Physical rating
Ages
Min 15
Group size
Min 1, Max 16

Why you'll love this trip

  • Explore the vast wonderland of Kakadu National Park, taking a cruise down the East Alligator River. Led by an Aboriginal guide, learn about the cultural and natural story of the landscape.

  • Marvel at some of the world’s oldest art at Nourlangie. Painted by the Bininj people, this fascinating rock art provides insight into life some 20,000 years ago.

  • Discover the belief-defying landscapes of the Katherine Gorge during a guided cruise along the Katherine River, learning about local history and culture along the way.

  • With a local leader by your side, you’ll get a special insight into the environments you visit and discover all the best places to walk, swim and explore.

Is this trip right for you?

  • Temperatures in the Top End can be extreme. During the day the weather can be hot (and the Australian sun is strong) so please bring appropriate clothing, use sun protection and drink plenty of water. In the evenings temperatures really drop, so ensure you have base layers and warm clothing.

  • This trip is new to our range this year. And while we have thoroughly researched every detail of the logistics, new destinations and working with new partners can sometimes throw us some unexpected surprises. More often than not, it’ll be a great surprise. But every now and again there might be a hiccup. We like to think that’s what puts the ‘adventure’ in ‘adventure travel’.

  • On some days of the trip, you’ll spend several hours driving through very sparse areas of Australia. Sit back and enjoy landscapes that you would miss in any other form of travel. Extra space can be tight, and conditions may feel a little cramped. Think of it as a great way to get to know your fellow travellers. The drive days can be long, but it’s as much about the journey as the destination, and half the fun is the camaraderie.

Itinerary

Welcome to the Top End! Your adventure begins in tropical Darwin, the capital of the Northern Territory and your gateway to the wonders of the Top End. Prior to your welcome meeting tomorrow morning, the day is yours for your own discoveries of Darwin, so you are free to arrive at any time. You may like to take a dip in the Darwin City Lagoon, a protected bay with a net to keep out crocs and other unwelcome creatures. A visit to the Museum and Art Gallery of the Northern Territory is a must for a taste of the state’s culture, history and art. Rest up this evening for an early start and exciting day tomorrow.
Accommodation
  • Hotel (1 night)
Meals Included
There are no meals included on this day.
Special Information
Today is arrival day with your accommodation in Darwin included. You will meet your group and the group leader tomorrow early morning on day 2 for the trip out to Litchfield National Park.
Rise bright and early and meet at the hotel's reception at 7:30am, when you will meet your local leader and the other travellers joining you on your journey. Then make the drive to the magnificent Litchfield National Park. On arrival, visit Litchfield’s famous termite mounds. Take a refreshing dip in the magnificent Wangi Falls, then enjoy a peaceful lunch next to the falls themselves. Next pay a visit to the Buley Rockhole, a series of shallow rock pools perfect for a another dip. In the afternoon, make the drive back to Darwin. Refresh and then join your leader for a visit to the Mindil Beach Sunset Markets, showcasing art and crafts from local vendors. There are plenty of options for dinner here too.
Accommodation
  • Hotel (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Darwin - Mindil Beach Markets Visit
  • Litchfield National Park - Magnetic Termite Mounds
  • Litchfield National Park - Wangi Falls
  • Litchfield National Park - Buley Rockhole
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
Special Information
Today’s total driving time is approximately 4.5 hours. As you will return back to Darwin in the afternoon for another night in Darwin you can leave your luggage in your room, except for essential items for the day trip today. Don't forget your swimmers!
After an early breakfast, depart Darwin and drive towards Kakadu National Park. Covering an enormous 20,000 sq km, the park is a world of its own. Stop for a photo opportunity at Mamukala Wetlands, and after a picnic lunch by the river at Cahill's Crossing hop aboard a cruise down the East Alligator River (despite the name, you won’t see any alligators – this is crocodile country). You’ll be joined by an Aboriginal guide who will provide a unique insight on the cultural significance of the landscape and the plants and animals that live there. After your cruise, set off on the Ubirr walk with your leader, a 1km loop that leads you past incredible examples of Aboriginal rock art and to an awe-inspiring lookout point. Continue to your accommodation for the evening, a resort within the national park.
Accommodation
  • Hotel (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Kakadu National Park - Guluyambi Cultural Cruise on the East Alligator River
  • Kakadu National Park - Mamukala Wetlands
  • Kakadu National Park – Ubirr walk
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
Special Information
Today’s total driving time is approximately 4 hours.
This morning, drive to Nourlangie, famous for its World Heritage listed rock art created by the Bininj people. There are various short walks available to you while here, each offering a different perspective on the wildlife, art and natural features of the area. Continue to Gunlom Falls and enjoy a scenic picnic lunch while admiring the towering cascade. You may like to cool off after lunch with a dip in the gorgeous plunge pool beneath the falls. In the afternoon, drive to Katherine, where the outback meets the tropics. Your accommodation for the next two nights is near Nitmiluk National Park.
Accommodation
  • Hotel (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Kakadu National Park - Gunlom Falls & Picnic Lunch
  • Kakadu National Park - Burrungkuy (Nourlangie) main gallery and shelter walk
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
Special Information
Today’s total driving time is approximately 5 hours.
Start the day with a visit to the Katherine Gorge, a truly impressive series of sandstone gorges sculpted by the Katherine River. Enjoy a cruise down the river to marvel at the dramatic scenery, as local guides fill you in on the flora and fauna of the region while providing historical and cultural context. In the afternoon, head out on foot and explore Katherine Gorge from a different angle. Return to your accommodation for another night in Katherine.
Accommodation
  • Hotel (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Nitmiluk National Park - Nitmiluk (Katherine) Gorge walk
  • Nitmiluk National Park - Katherine Gorge Cruise
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
Special Information
Today’s total driving time is approximately 1 hour. You'll be walking around 3 hours (4km) today.
Start off the day with a visit and swim at Katherine's hot springs. Then head to Edith Falls, a stunning collection of tumbling cascades where you'll enjoy a swim in the deep-blue natural pools. Once you're thoroughly refreshed, its time to begin the journey back to Darwin, making a stop along the way at the town of Pine Creek where you'll learn about the rich indigenous history of the region. Arrive back into Darwin in the afternoon and say goodbye to your newfound friends, as your adventure comes to an end here upon arrival.
Included Activities
  • Nitmiluk National Park - Leliyn (Edith Falls)
  • Katherine - Hot Springs Visit
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
Special Information
Today’s total driving time is approximately 4 hours.

Meals

5 breakfasts, 4 lunches

Transport

Private vehicle

Accommodation

Hotel (5 nights)

Included activities

  • Darwin - Mindil Beach Markets Visit
  • Litchfield National Park - Magnetic Termite Mounds
  • Litchfield National Park - Wangi Falls
  • Litchfield National Park - Buley Rockhole
  • Kakadu National Park - Guluyambi Cultural Cruise on the East Alligator River
  • Kakadu National Park - Mamukala Wetlands
  • Kakadu National Park – Ubirr walk
  • Kakadu National Park - Gunlom Falls & Picnic Lunch
  • Kakadu National Park - Burrungkuy (Nourlangie) main gallery and shelter walk
  • Nitmiluk National Park - Nitmiluk (Katherine) Gorge walk
  • Nitmiluk National Park - Katherine Gorge Cruise
  • Nitmiluk National Park - Leliyn (Edith Falls)
  • Katherine - Hot Springs Visit

Dates & availability

Trip departures are unavailable.

There are currently no scheduled departures on our Top End & Kakadu Explorer trip. If you are interested in other trips in the region visit one of the links below.

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Important notes

Travellers on Intrepid trips are required to produce proof of full vaccination against COVID-19. Read details here.

START & END TIMES
The tour commences in Darwin on Day 1 with arrival at your leisure and finishes back in Darwin on the final day in the late afternoon. We recommend onward travel should be booked for the following day.

LUGGAGE LIMIT
A strict luggage limit of 10kg applies on this trip. Excess luggage should be stored at your accommodation in Darwin.

SINGLE SUPPLEMENT
A single supplement is available if you’d prefer not to share a room on this trip. The single supplement is subject to availability. Please speak to your booking agent for further information.

Essential trip information

Want an in-depth insight into this trip? Essential Trip Information provides a detailed itinerary, visa info, how to get to your hotel, what's included - pretty much everything you need to know about this adventure and more.

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