Gulf Savannah Tours
Gulf Savannah Tours Darwin to Cairns or Cairns to Darwin
Gulf Savannah Tours travel the Savannah Way hugging the Gulf of Carpentaria in Australia far North, and include Lost City, Lawn Hill, Riversleigh Dinosaurs, Undara Lava Tubes Tours
Next Departures – Check Dates here or Book Now
Depart May to October – Check Dates or Book Now
Darwin to Cairns via Lost City & Gulf Savannah Tours – Eastbound – Darwin to Cairns via Top End & Savannah Way tours include Mataranka Hot Springs and “We of the Never Never” homestead, Daly Waters famous pub and show), Cape Crawford, Lost City, (optional heli flight) Caranbirini Nature Reserve, Hells Gate, Borroloola, Riversleigh Dinosaur Fossil Fields, Lawn Hill National Park, (now Boodjamulla National Park) Adel’s Grove (2 nights), Bourke & Wills Roadhouse, Normanton, Karumba Gulf Carpentaria sunset cruise, Undara Lava Tubes. Then Cairns. Optional Katherine Gorge &/or Kakadu Extend for Laura Dance Festival 3 days (alternate years) and optionally Cape York Peninsula & Thursday Island 8 days/7 nights.
Departs usually 2nd and 4th Sundays Darwin to Cairns from June to October Check Dates or Book Now
Cairns to Darwin via Lost City & Gulf Savannah Way Tours – Westbound – Walk in the stunning Undara Lava Tubes, Mt Surprise (Savannahlander train overnight stop), Croydon, Normanton (visit Gulflander train & station), Karumba (Gulf Carpentaria sunset cruise), Riversleigh Fossils / Dinosaurs tour, Hells Gate, Borroloola, Lost City, Cape Crawford, Caranbirini Nature Reserve, Daly Waters pub, Mataranka Hot Springs and “We of the Never Never” homestead, to Darwin. 8 days/7 nights. Cairns to Darwin – Check Dates here – Book Now
Departs usually 1st, 3rd, 5th Sundays Cairns to Darwin from June to October. Check Dates or Book Now
Alice Springs to Cairns via Lost City & Gulf Savannah Tours – Eastbound – via Devils Marbles, Tennant Creek & Savannah Way tours include Cape Crawford, Lost City, (optional heli flight) Caranbirini Nature Reserve, Hells Gate, Borroloola, Riversleigh Dinosaur Fossil Fields, Lawn Hill National Park, (now Boodjamulla National Park) Adel’s Grove (2 nights), Bourke & Wills Roadhouse, Normanton, Karumba Gulf Carpentaria sunset cruise, Undara Lava Tubes. Then Cairns. Optional Katherine Gorge &/or Kakadu Extend for Laura Dance Festival 3 days (alternate years) and optionally Cape York Peninsula & Thursday Island 8 days/7 nights. Check Dates here – Book Now
OPTION – Alice Springs to Cairns via Plenty Highway – Diamantina National Park, Min Min Encounter, Dinosaur Trail to Cairns Tour. Extend for Laura Dance Festival and optionally Cape York Peninsula – If travelling to Cairns with Spirit Safaris to meet Cape York tour, you can travel from Alice Springs, explore the Plenty Highway on the edge of the Simpson Desert, the Min Min experience in Boulia, the mighty Diamantina River and the Dinosaur Trail as we travel on to Cloncurry (Qantas birthplace) Lava Tubes & Cairns – Please Ask
Undara Lava Tubes – Volcanic lava has created a remarkable tunnel system that lies beneath the rich grasslands of Undara.
Gulf Savannah Tours incl. Lost City, Lawn Hill, Riversleigh Dinosaurs, Undara Lava Tubes Tour
Cairns to Darwin (Westbound) itinerary shown below. Darwin to Cairns (Eastbound) is reverse itinerary except Westbound has 2 nights at Lawn Hill/Adel’s Grove instead of Cobbold Gorge, includes Riversleigh Dinosaurs tour but no Kurumba visit.
Days Prior – Cape York tour prior or Cairns / Kuranda options – Ask for details
Day 1 – Gulf Savannah Way Tours – Depart Cairns for the picturesque drive to the Atherton tablelands to tour through the Undara Lava Tubes. The Undara Lava Tubes were formed some 190,000 years ago when a major volcano erupted, its molten lava flowing down a dry river bed. As the top layer quickly cooled and crusted, the fiery magma below continued to flow through the tubes taking it further and further from the volcano. The Undara tubes are the world’s longest lava flow. The word Undara means ‘a long way’ in Aboriginal language. One of the lava flows from Undara extends over 160 kilometres (or 100 miles). This makes it one of the longest lava flows from a single volcano on our planet in modern geological time. The original tube formed by the flow extended for approximately 100 kilometres, and several sections are accessible. After our 2 hour tour and tasty lunch, we overnight at Mt Surprise (where Savannahlander train also overnights.) LD
Day 2 – Travel via Georgetown and the multi award winning, Terrestrial – the Ted Elliott Mineral Collection, the largest minerals collection in the world. We follow the Gulflander Railway line via the Gulf Development Road through Croydon which in goldrush days had 7000 people and 122 pubs. On to Normanton, and view the old Burns Philp store, and the 1870 railway history from the goldrush days, plus the hot artesian bore. Arriving Karumba on the edge of the Gulf of Carpentaria, we enjoy a sunset river cruise. Karumba is the base of the gulf Barramundi and prawning industry and home to many salt water crocodiles. Overnight Karumba BL – Dinner at own expense in local restaurant – great fresh fish and prawns here !
Day 3 & 4 – Today we surely see flocks of Brolgas on our way to Burke and Wills last camp 119 near Burketown. Travelling westward and parallel to the coastline of the Gulf of Carpentaria in this spectacular savannah country, we cross numerous rivers including the Leichardt River, named after Ludwig Leichardt who walked this country in 1845. We check out the Leichardt Falls before travelling across the “Plains of Promise” named when H M Brig Beagle (the famous ship which had carried Charles Darwin on his voyage) visited here in 1841. Enjoy a break in the frontier town of Burketown, named after Burke of the Burke and Wills Expedition of 1860 who reached the gulf near here in February 1861. Burketown was established in 1865 to service new pastoral holdings established in the region.We arrive at Lawn Hill National Park, (now Boodjamulla National Park) Adel’s Grove (2 nights), and walk, canoe or swim in the beautiful lagoon with waterfalls. Visit the amazing Riversleigh Dinosaur Fossil Field. Overnight Adels Grove BLD
Day 5. We travel by the large Aboriginal community of Doomadgee, then Hells gate where police were stationed to provide escorts for settlers to the escarpments of Hell’s Gate, beyond which the Aboriginals were considered fierce. Hells Gate is the routes most western settlement in Queensland and now is a popular stopover with a grassy oasis and refreshments, nearby Aboriginal rock art and caves. We travel via Westmoreland (uranium deposits) and enter the Northern Territory, passing the Redbank (copper) Mine and arrive at Borroloola for overnight. BLD
Day 6. Borroloola is now a popular fishing destination. Population is around 800 (about 200 whitefellas and 600 Aboriginal), with Aborigines living in camps around the town. Borroloola has some very different Aboriginal cultures ie the Yanyuwa and Mara are ‘saltwater people’ from the nearby islands while the Kurdanji and Karawa people are ‘mainland people’. We visit Caranbirini Nature Reserve to walk amongst the Lost City through sandstone towers overlooking a billabong and across the escarpment country of the Gulf Region. Optional helicopter flight over the Lost City. The Lost City can this morning be explored by helicopter from base at the Heartbreak Hotel at Cape Crawford, with an amazing 15 or optional 30 minute flight over these ancient sandstone pillars, formed when all this area was underwaterArrive Daly Waters famous pub for overnight. BLD
Day 7 – We take a short tour of the WWII airbase and aircraft hanger at Daly Waters – with a fascinating historic display of WWII equipment, aircraft images and life here at that time. Onwards for a swim at Mataranka Hot Springs and connect with the famous classic outback Australian story of “We of the Never Never” and Elsey’s homestead from the film. Onward vi Katherine then Darwin for overnight BLD
Day 8 – A free day to celebrate your journey. Enjoy a leisurely breakfast and the many sights or activities Darwin has to offer. Options include a trip to Kakadu or Litchfield National Parks, or simply shop or relax in Darwin’s balmy climate. Tour ends after breakfast. Home Flights depart from Darwin or consider travelling with us to Alice Springswith options including Kakadu, Katherine Gorge (optional), Lost City & Devils Marbles. B
Optionally tour by Kakadu National Park for 1 or 2 nights from Katherine, or do Kakadu in a day or more from Darwin. Ask for details.
Kakadu Options available
Visit the incredible Nourlangie rock art gallery and enjoy a Yellow Waters wetlands boat cruise, visit to the cultural centre, Jabiru and wetlands viewing area. Ask for details
Cairns to Darwin via Lost City, Undara Lava Tubes, Cobbold Gorge, Adels Grove, Lawn Hill, Savannah Way Tour
Darwin to Cairns or Reverse Cairns to Darwin
8 days / 7 nights
$ 4,995 comfy camping. Add $995 per room (twin or double) for 7 nights motel style accommodation
Next Departures – Check dates here or Book Now