7 Day / 8 night Lake Eyre and Flinders Ranges Photography Tour -
1st September 2019 only
1- Sun 1st Sept April - Arrival day into Adelaide (D)
Upon arrival into Adelaide Airport, please make your way to our Adelaide City Hotel- taxis and an airport shuttle are available.
Our first dinner as a group is included at the hotel, which is a great opportunity to get to meet your fellow travellers.
Overnight accommodation- Adelaide Ibis - hotel room with en-suite
Day 2 (B,D)- Mon 2nd Sept
After breakfast, you'll be transferred back to Adelaide Airport for your flight to Coober Pedy.
Coober Pedy is as famous for its underground homes as it is for its opals and 50% of the population live underground (in homes called "dugouts", as well as using underground shops and churches.
You will be collected upon arrival into Coober Pedy, and driven into the town, for a couple of hours free time to wander around at your leisure- perhaps visit the Old Timers Mine and Museum, one of the underground churches in town, the town lookout or perhaps take a look at the spaceship located next to our hotel (yes, really- used in the Vin Diesel movie "Pitch Black").
This afternoon you'll take a guided tour through a working Opal Mine, where you'll get an insight of what it means to be an opal miner.
Late this afternoon, we make our way out of town, through the Moon Plain to the nearby Breakaways Reserve, offering a striking & unique example of arid scenery. From the flat topped mesas to the stony gibber desert, remnant of millions of years provide awealth of geological interests and breathtaking views. There are two lookout points which highlight the open spaces and colourful environment, leaving an impression of the long gone inland sea that our early explorers dreamt of. From the lookout, the locally named "Castle" or "Salt & Pepper" can be seen in an easterly direction. This outcrop has been used in a number of films and advertisments, while Panorama Hill situated in the middle, features in Mad Max Beyond the Thunderdome and Ground Zero. As the day goes by, the passing of the sun changes the desert colours, creating photogenic scenes that appear surreal. Fantastic sunset opportunity buy we will need to leave straight afterwards to get back into Coober Pedy before it gets too dark, as you are travelling on dirt roads.
Overnight accommodation- underground motel room with en-suite, Desert Cave Hotel, Coobed Pedy
**if preferred, above ground rooms are also available**
Day 3 (B,L,D)- Tues 3rd Sept
This morning we depart Coober Pedy and head to William Creek, past Lake Cadibarrawirracanna, Or Lake Caddi for short !
We now join the 625km unsealed Oodnadatta Track, which follows the old Ghan railway line and the Overland Telegraph, after it was originally mapped by the explorer, John McDouall Stuart. Thetrack follows an old Aboriginal trading route through semi- desert country with artesian springs and water holes along the way. The route was also used by camel trains in the 1880's, led by cameleers from Afghanistan, both of which were especially brought to Australia for the task of hauling goods into Central Australia for use by pioneer settlers. Camels were the only pack animals capable of taking a six week journey in often extreme heat, through sandy terrain. When the train line was extended to Alice Springs in the 1929, many of these camels were left to run wild in the Outback where they number in the tens of thousands today. The line became known as the Central Australian Railway and the train service on the line was known as The Ghan in honour of the Afghan cameleers.
We arrive at William Creek, the smallest settlement in South Australia with a population of 3 humans and a dog ! It's located 165 kms from the nearest town and sits in the middle of the largest cattle station in the world (Anna Creek- approximately the size of England). After lunch, we make our way out to Halligan Bay at Lake Eyre oNrth for a look at the magnificent lake with it's incredible colours and patterns. Lake Eyre is Australia's lowest point, the largest inland lake in Australia and the largest salt lake in the world ! The lake contains 4000 million tonnes of salt and is 15 metres below sea level. Donal Campbell set a land speed world record of 649 kmh in his turbine car "Bluebird" on its dry bed back in 1964.
There's time this afternoon for scenic flights over Lake Eyre (additional cost- approx. $285 pp for 1 hour). This is highly recommended !
The incredible colours and patterns of Lake Eyre are accentuated from theair whether full of water or totally dry. A captivating flight that will return you both visually and educationally enriched.
Overnight accommodation- motel room with en-suite, William Creek Pub Hotel, middle of nowhere, Outback South Australia
We are in the middle of nowhere here, so you wander anywhere outside of the hotel area (2 minute walk in any direction) for sunset / sunrise photos over the Outback. Also a great place for photos of the night sky.
Day 4 (B,L,D)- Wed 4th Sept
We continue exploring the Oodnadatta Track this morning, heading south towards Marree. We stop several times en-route, including the natural artesian springs within theWabma Kadarbu Mound Spring Conservation Park. The Blanche Cup and The Bubbler mound springs are created from water deep within the Great Artesian Basin which filters to the surface forming mounds of bubbling ponds.
After stopping at the Lake Eyre South Lookout, we pass the famous dingo fence again and then reach Marree, which is situated at the crossroads of the Oodnadatta and Birdsville Tracks. The town also has a rich Aboriginal, Afghan and European heritage.
After checking into our accommodation, you have some free time to look around the town or visit the Tom Kruse Museum.
Overnight accommodation- motel room with en-suite, Marree Pub Hotel
Day 5 (B,L,D)- Thurs 5th Sept
Departing Marree, we now head south towards the Northern Flinders Ranges.
En- route we visit Farina and the Ochre Pits. Farina was one of the towns settled early in the period of the "opening of the Outback" by European settlers. Explore the ruins, many of which have been stabilized and researched and imagine in your minds eye, the life they may have lived and the hardships they endured.
Many years ago, the Queensland Aborigines would walk to SA to trade flints for the ochre found at the Lyndhurst Ochre Pits. The Ochre was used to paint their bodies for ceremonial purposes. The pits are still there today with all their lowing colours.
We now drive to Arkaroola Wildernss Sanctuary, the privately owned sanctuary founded in 1969 by Reg Sprigg, Biologists, Oceanographer, Conservationist, scientists and pioneer of eco- touriam.
Many minerals are found on Arkaroola, including gold, sapphires, rubies, amethyst, several forms of quartz, uraninite and malachite (among others) and evidence of early mining is scattered about Arkaroola and the Gammon Ranges.
Arkaroola is also famous for its clear night skies and offers some of the best viewing conditions in Australia.
Overnight accommodation- Motel room with en-suite, Arkaroola Wilderness Sanctuary
Day 6 (B,L,D)- Fri 6th Sept
This morning you'll take Arkaroola's famous Ridgetop tour- an unforgettable encounter with the timeless terrain and unique natural beauty of Arkaroola Wilderness Sanctuary. Learn from your Arkaroolas guides about Arkaroolas 1600 million year old geological history as they navigate the steep slopes and hair raising ascents of the Ridgetop Track. Inspiring images of red granite mountains and golden spinifex covered hillsides give way to a breath- taking view across the Freeling Heights, Lak Frome and the desert beyond. Take in the 360 degree panorama as you enjoy morning tea at Sillers Lookout- a lofty pinnacle at the end of the track.
After lunch we depart for the central Flinders Ranges, know for their unique beauty, indigenous history, ancient geological formations, rich colours and textures and abundant wildlife. The Flinders Ranges are home to a huge array of plant species, birds, reptiles and mammals and the vibrant colours of the 800 million year old quartzite and limestone outcrop that is the Flinders, are truly spectacular.
Overnight accommodation- Motel room with en-suite at Wilpena Pound Resort (2 night stay)
Day 7 (B,L,D)- Sat 7th Sept
This morning you have the option of taking a walk into Wilpena Pound or take a scenic flight (at own expense). Walk along the beautiful Wilpena Creek, framed by huge river red gums, into Wilpena Pound. Walking on to the Old Hills Homestead, you can learn about the hardships the Hills family had to face at the turn of the century with the option of walking up to the Wangara Lookout to see the mystical heart of the Flinders Ranges with stunning views over Wipena Pound. There is a shuttle available to shorten the walk (approx. $5 pp each way).
After lunch we depart for an afternoon of exploring. First, we take the Moralana Scenic Drive, which connects the Wilpena and Leigh Creek Roads and is known as one of the best drives through the Flinders Ranges. We'll see stunning scenery featuring the southern wall of Wilpena Pound, Black Gap Lookout, Red Range, Elder Range and more.
Then onto the Brachina Gorge Geological Trail, a trail that passes through 130 million years of earths history, including meteorite debris, stromatolites and fossilized plant and animal life. It offers an insight into past climates, the formation of the ranges and the evolution of early forms of life. It's also an important refuge for the rare and endangered Yellow- footed Rock wallaby. This leads us through the Heysen Ranges through Bunyeroo Valley and Gorge, where we stop for sunset photos at the spectacular Razorback Lookout.
Overnight accommodation- Motel room with en-suite at Wilpena Pound Resort
Day 8 (B,L,D)- Sun 8th Sept
Departing Wilpena and the Flinders Ranges, we now head south again towards Clare. En-route we'll stop at the "Midnight Ol House", one of Australia's most photographed ruins. The abandoned farmhouse is just north of the township of Burra and rose to fame on the album cover of Midnight Oil's "Diesel and Dust" record.
We reach Clare and have lunch at a local bakery before continuing to Adelaide.
Our final dinner as a group will be served in the hotel restaurant.
Overnight accommodation- Adelaide Ibis - hotel room with en-suite
Day 9 (B)- Mon 9th Sept- departure day from Adelaide
Please make your way to Adelaide Airport for your onward flight.
B = Breakfast / L = Lunch / D = Dinner
This tour departs from Adelaide on 1st September 2019 only
Confirmed to run- only 5 seats remaining
AUD $4995 PER ADULT, TWIN SHARE
$5695 PER PERSON SINGLE
Subject to availability, including GST and valid until 31/10/2019
**don't forget the 10% seniors card holders discount- conditions apply **
**solo travellers must have single room, unless twin share of the same sex can be found. Solo travellers can also request single room and pay the single supplement**
Maximum 15 passengers
• Seat in 4WD vehicle, with professional driver guide
• Andrew Goodall from Natures Image Photography as your host and photography guide
• Meals, as stated
• Tour accommodation as stated including 1 night pre and 1 night post tour in Adelaide
• Entry fees and permits
• Opal mine tour in Coober Pedy
• Ridgetop tour at Arkaroola
• Flight from Adelaide to Coober Pedy
• Arrival / departure flights into Adelaide
• Travel insurance
• Optional activities such as helicopter flights, Camel rides and Harley rides
Itinerary is exclusive to Sacred Earth Safaris and is subject to availability, road, weather and cultural conditions.