Central Australia Tours (A Journey Through The Red Centre)
Central Australia Tours
Home  >  Australia  >  Northern Territory, Australia  >  20 Day Australia Top End, Red Centre and Murray River Heritage Cruise


Adelaide, Kings Canyon, Alice Springs, Tennant...
Discover the Australian outback on a journey from Adelaide through the Red Centre, all the way to Darwin in the Top End.
Start Location: Adelaide End Location: Darwin
  • Historic Mannum
  • PS Murray Princess Cruise
  • Burk Salter Winery
  • Woolshed Show
  • Native Wildlife Shelter
  • Aussie BBQ
  • Ngaut Ngaut Aboriginal Reserve
  • Younghusband
  • Adelaide City Tour
  • Central Market Wine Tasting
  • Flinders Ranges
  • Wilpena Pound
Day 2: Mannum and the Murray River Cruise

You have the morning free to explore the highlights of this vibrant city before boarding the 1:30pm bus for the two-hour drive across undulating landscape to Mannum and then boarding the PS Murray Princess. You sail late afternoon from historic Mannum, the birthplace of the Murray River trade and communication, and head upriver while you enjoy a dinner. As you cruise under floodlight to your overnight mooring at Caurnamont, you may see nocturnal wildlife on the riverbank. Watch for kangaroos, hairy-nosed wombats, tortoises, egrets and many other species.
Overnight: PS Murray Princess Cruise
Meals: Breakfast, Dinner
Day 3: Murray River Cruise

Early morning is time for the keen photographers to be out to capture the special light and the morning movement of wildlife. Prolific birdlife includes pelicans, wrens and swans. Enjoy a leisurely morning and lunch cruising upriver to Blanchetown through one of 13 locks, which maintain the flow and levels of water. This afternoon you moor opposite to the township of Blanchetown for the overnight anchorage. As the last rays of the sun fade, join a guided tour of Burk Salter Wines vineyards and surrounding wetlands and enjoy wine tasting at the cellar door, which is fitted out with beautiful red gum bars.
Overnight: PS Murray Princess Cruise
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day 4: Murray River Cruise

After breakfast, cruise downriver to picturesque Swan Reach. First settled in the 1850's, the town was originally the largest of five sheep and cattle stations in the area and is now home to native flower and fruit growers. The original Swan Reach homestead is now the Swan Reach Hotel, where you can enjoy an ale or cappuccino overlooking the Murray River (additional cost). Later on join the guided walking tour to visit the Swan Reach Museum, a must see. Cruise downriver after lunch and take in the tranquility as the landscape slides by. When you arrive at Sunnydale, it's all ashore for the Woolshed Show as guests recreate typical Australian woolshed history. Later visit the Native Wildlife Shelter, where some of South Australia's most interesting native animals are cared for. And then, of course, there is the great Aussie BBQ, cooked and served in a bush setting on the banks of the mighty Murray River.
Overnight: PS Murray Princess Cruise
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day 5: Murray River Cruise

Today the boat cruises slowly downriver past magnificent cliffs scoured by the river over millions of years. The boat reaches Ngaut Ngaut Aboriginal Reserve, one of Australia's most significant archaeological sites, for a step back in time. A guided boardwalk tour will take you to view ancient rock carvings and learn about aboriginal history in the area. Return to the boat to cruise downriver to Younghusband. Tonight the Captain and his officers host a spectacular Farewell Captain's Buffet Dinner. Dress up and dance, if you wish.
Overnight: PS Murray Princess Cruise
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day 7: Adelaide — Flinders Ranges, Australia

Today travel to the Clare Valley for a wine tasting at Jesuit-owned Sevenhill Cellars, the oldest existing winery in the region. Explore the picturesque grounds, including St. Aloysius Church, and take a stroll through the vines before stopping in Clare at lunchtime. Later, travel through the spectacular Flinders Ranges to Wilpena Pound, a remarkable natural amphitheatre covering nearly 8,000 hectares. Pass the intriguing ruins of deserted pastoral leases and keep an eye out for mobs of emu on the plains as dusk draws near.
Overnight: Flinders Ranges
Meals: Breakfast, Dinner
Day 8: Flinders Ranges — Port Augusta, Australia

Take a spectacular walk to Hills Homestead and Wangara Lookout for incredible views of Wilpena Pound. You are likely to see wild emus and kangaroos grazing along the riverbank. Journey through Pichi Richi Pass and historic Quorn on your way to Port Augusta. Visit the Wadlata Outback Centre, and then venture to Cena on Chapel for a delicious dinner.
Overnight: Port Augusta
Meals: Breakfast, Dinner
Day 9: Port Augusta — Coober Pedy, Australia

Visit Woomera, then travel through salt lake country, watching as the landscape changes as you near isolated Coober Pedy, Australia's opal capital! Visit an underground church and home with a local guide and view an opal demonstration. You stay at the well-known Desert Cave Hotel in Coober Pedy.
Overnight: Coober Pedy
Meals: Breakfast, Dinner
Day 12: Ayers Rock — Kings Canyon, Australia

Travel to Kings Canyon Resort. On the way, marvel at Attila (Mount Conner), the "forgotten wonder of Central Australia", and stop for a lunch break at Kings Creek Station. Originally vacant crown land, the station now runs cattle and is the largest exporter of wild camels in Australia. Learn the intriguing story of owners Ian and Lynn Conway and their dedication to aboriginal children in the region's remote communities. You can do a six-kilometre rim walk exploration of Kings Canyon, which will reward you with marvelous views of Watarrka National Park, where you'll be able to see as far as the horizon and get a real feel for the grand scale of this natural wonder. An easier walk along the boulder-strewn canyon floor is also available.
Overnight: Kings Canyon
Meals: Breakfast, Dinner
Day 13: Kings Canyon — Alice Springs, Australia

Today you journey to Alice Springs. Travel across vast cattle properties and get a feel for just how expansive the outback is. Visit the historic Telegraph Station in Alice Springs, established in 1872, first serving for 60 years as one of 12 stations positioned along the Overland Telegraph Line that stretches 3,000 kilometres to relay messages between Adelaide and Darwin. It later served as a school for aboriginal children and was known as 'The Bungalow'. Top off the day at Anzac Hill for panoramic views over Alice Springs.
Overnight: Alice Springs
Meals: Breakfast
Day 14: Alice Springs, Australia

Learn about the life and survival of the Arrernte people, including the search for water and bush food, from a local aboriginal guide at Alice Springs Desert Park. Visit the Nocturnal House and enjoy a captivating Birds of Prey presentation. Continue to the Royal Flying Doctor Service and learn how the facility brings first-class health services to people living in the bush. This evening enjoy a home cooked gourmet BBQ dinner at Earth Sanctuary World Nature Centre as you listen to tales of ecology, culture and astronomy, and even join a sing-a-long accompanied by the didgeridoo and guitar. It will be a night to remember!
Overnight: Alice Springs
Meals: Breakfast
Day 15: Alice Springs — Tennant Creek, Australia

Your first stop is the School of the Air. Witness a live classroom lesson broadcast over 1.3 million square kilometres to children living in remote locations who would otherwise have no access to public education. Later, travel north towards Tennant Creek, stopping at interesting Wycliffe Well on the way to visit Karlu-Karlu (Devils Marbles). You'll have plenty of time to walk around the precariously balanced boulders. End the day at Tennant Creek, an old gold mining town along the Stuart Highway.
Overnight: Tennant Creek
Meals: Breakfast, Dinner
Day 16: Tennant Creek — Katherine, Australia

Today travel north and visit eccentric Daly Waters Historic Pub for a refreshing ale at lunchtime. Continue to Mataranka, "Land of the Never Never". Here you can visit a replica of the original Elsey Homestead, used in the filming of "We of the Never Never", an autobiographical film about Jeannie Gunn's life in the outback. Or, you may take the palm-lined walkway for a swim in the famous thermal springs - a bit of a must do! Travel on to Katherine for the night.
Overnight: Katherine
Meals: Breakfast, Dinner
Day 17: Katherine — Kakadu, Australia

Join the local guide on a serene early morning cruise through Katherine Gorge in Nitmiluk National Park. Discover the cultural significance of this ancient waterway to the traditional landowners, the Jawoyn, and keep an eye out for the resident crocodiles. Continue to Kakadu National Park via Pine Creek and treat yourself to a mango smoothie along the way from Mayse's Cafe! Travel deep into Kakadu for a cruise on the famous Yellow Water Billabong. You should see a stunning variety of birdlife such as sea eagles, brolgas, and with any luck, fascinating little kingfishers. You'll also see feared estuarine crocodiles basking in the muddy shallows. Continue to Ubirr and view aboriginal rock art dating back some 20,000 years. Climb to the top of this rocky outcrop for spectacular views in the dusk light over the flood plains and escarpment country. You may recognise the location from the famous Australian film, Crocodile Dundee!
Overnight: Kakadu
Meals: Breakfast, Dinner
Day 20: Depart Darwin, Australia

This incredible trip comes to an end after breakfast as you transfer to the airport for your flight home.
Meals: Breakfast
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  • 15 nights of accommodation (3-4 star)
  • 4 nights of accommodation on PS Murray Princess River Cruise
  • Professional Tour Leader and driver-guide
  • Transportation on deluxe motorcoach
  • 37 meals: 19 breakfasts, 3 lunches, 15 dinners
  • Gratuities to driver (Recommend $3-$4 per person per day)
  • Gratuities to guide (Recommend $5-$7 per person per day)
  • Items of a personal nature
  • Meals not listed
  • Attractions not listed
  • Credit card payment fees, where applicable
  • Airfare — domestic and international (Unless Specified)
  • Travel insurance (Strongly recommended, ask us for a quote!)
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Tour Questions

What is the maximum number of travellers in a group?

Anderson Vacations specializes in Small Group Fully Escorted tours. If the tour is classified as a ‘Classic Tour’ up to 24 persons may join the tour although tours commonly travel with anywhere between 18 to 24 travellers. If the tour is classified as a 'Tour of Distinction’ only up to 18 persons may join the tour and many 'Tours of Distinction' travel with 12 to 18 travellers.

What are Guaranteed Departures?

After dreaming about travel to an exciting destination, arranging for time off work, booking your flights the last thing you need is for your trip to be cancelled. Anderson vacation's pre-Guaranteed tours take the uncertainty away from planning your travel and give you peace of mind to book our tours. Pre-Guaranteed Tours are group tours that we have already confirmed as certain to travel on the specified date. All 'Guaranteed Tours' will travel except in the event of a natural disaster or a catastrophic event that is beyond our control. They may already have the minimum number of people booked or else are tours that are known to be popular. Only select departures of tours are 'pre-Guaranteed'.

What happens if I book on a tour that is not Guaranteed?

We pride ourselves on providing “a small shared group experience.” In the event that we have fewer than ten participants on a tour we will offer a “small-group surcharge” to ensure that the tour runs as scheduled. This fee, which is up to 15% of the “land” portion of the tour, will be offered to you as an option to continue with the trip. This fee will cover the costs associated with handling a smaller group.

What is the average age of passengers for this tour?

Our tours are suitable for all age demographics. The average age of travelers is typically 45+.

How physically demanding is this tour? Are you able to accommodate people with mobility restrictions/limitations?

Some tours are mainly coach based and may not be physically demanding while others may require walking inclines or on rough surfaces to access interesting locations. Please check with us and your booking agent carefully and discuss your mobility restrictions before completing any tour booking to ensure this style of travel is right for you.

Can you accommodate passengers with dietary restrictions (food allergies, vegan, vegetarian etc.)?

Yes, we do accommodate dietary restrictions (within reason) such as, food allergies, vegan, vegetarian, etc. There are many meals included on our fully escorted tours. Please inform us of any dietary restrictions at the time of booking so we can ensure there are alternative meal choices.
Booking & Flight Questions

Do you arrange airport transfers?

Yes, we can assist you with airport transfers for you in most locations at a reasonable extra cost. Several tours have airport transfers already included. Please contact us for more details.

Can you assist with booking additional accommodation?

Yes, we can certainly assist with booking additional nights of hotel accommodation for you before and after your fully escorted tour. This is available upon request and subject to availability. Please inquire for further information and prices.

How much luggage should I bring?

Each passenger may bring one large suitcase and one carry-on bag. The weight limit for baggage is 20 kilograms or about 40 pounds. Baggage handling is provided at the hotels in our tour packages but there may be places where you will be required to wheel in your bags for quicker access. Be sure to advise our reservations staff if you will be bringing additional items such as a cane, walker, or wheelchair. You may also bring one small soft-sided carry-on bag, which should easily fit into the overhead shelf of a coach. Each person is responsible for his/her own carryon luggage. Remember to check your airline baggage restrictions if you are flying, as they may differ from Anderson Vacations guidelines.

I am a solo traveller. Is there a single surcharge?

There are options for single travelers to join most tours. Solo travellers can choose to pay a Single Supplement and have their own room throughout the tour. For those willing to share with a co-traveller of the same gender, we have a Twin Share option that is offered for most tours where you share a hotel room with another same gender traveller. In this case, you will not be charged for Single Supplement.

Is it possible to book a triple share accommodation?

Yes, it is possible to book triple share accommodations on select trips. Please inquire or contact us regarding this option, as prices and availability vary from tour to tour.

Can we book this tour with our exclusive group?

Yes, you can! Anderson Vacations works with many private groups and helps to customize a tour to traveller’s needs. Please contact us for more details.

Are gratuities included in the tour cost?

For convenience, gratuities for local guides and meals that are specified in the itinerary are included in the tour price. For meals not included in your tour package please remember that it is customary to tip your server 10-20% in North America. Gratuities for your Coach Driver (where appropriate) and Tour Director are entirely at your discretion. We recommend about CDN $5.00 per person, per day, for your Driver and CDN$7.00 per person, per day for your Tour Leader.


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The style our travellers have enjoyed for over 20 years, these tours feature inclusive itineraries to popular destinations including the 'must see' sites and attractions. Led by an expert Tour Leader, you will enjoy comfortable accommodation, and coach transport throughout the journey.

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These tours are defined by their incomparably unique itineraries, featuring 'off the beaten path' destinations and immersive experiences. An intimate group size allows us to stay in smaller, centrally located, unique and boutique style inns, lodges and hotels, utilize traditional local transportation and dive deep into each destination's local culture and traditions.

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These travel experiences are fully customizable to better fit your needs. Every itinerary is created based on your comfort level, accommodation choices, and personal interests. Whether you are looking for a rail adventure, self drive holiday, unique experiences, or a short city stay our team will work with you on combining accommodation, transportation, and activities based on your preferences to create the perfect itinerary for you.

Click Icon to Read More.

These travel experiences are fully customizable to better fit your needs. Every itinerary is created based on your comfort level, accommodation choices, and personal interests. Whether you are looking for a rail adventure, self drive holiday, unique experiences, or a short city stay our team will work with you on combining accommodation, transportation, and activities based on your preferences to create the perfect itinerary for you.

Click Icon to Read More.