8 Day Taste of the Top End

8 Day Darwin to Adelaide

$3699

per person twin share

Overview
  • 4 nights accommodation in Darwin including breakfast daily
  • 1 day Litchfield National Park Waterfalls including lunch and touring
  • Charles Darwin’ Sunset Buffet Dinner Cruise
  • Half day Jumping Crocodiles and Nature Adventure tour
  • Transfer from Hotel to Darwin Rail Terminal
  • 4 days/3 nights aboard The Ghan Expedition, Darwin to Adelaide, including all meals, beverages and Off Train Excursions in Katherine, Alice Springs and Coober Pedy
  • 7 breakfasts, 4 lunches, 4 dinners

 

HIGHLIGHTS:

 

  • Take in the splendour of thundering falls, rainforest pockets and sacred historic sites of Litchfield National Park
  • Discover the incredible architecture of the termite mounds
  • View the spectacular double waterfalls of Florence Falls
  • Marvel at the water cascading down into the deep waterhole at the base of Tolmer Falls
  • Swim in the rock pools of Wangi Falls
  • Enjoy a full buffet dinner with a sunset view on your Darwin Harbour Cruise
  • Get up close to the prehistoric crocs
  • Be impressed by the amazing array of native birdlife
  • Visit the Window on the Wetlands Visitor Centre
  • Enjoy superb views across the Marrakai Plains and the Fogg Dam Conservation Reserve

 

PRICE PER PERSON FROM:

 

 
SHOULDER SEASON HIGH SEASON
GOLD SERVICE ADVANCE PURCHASE $3,699 $4,239
GOLD SERVICE EVERYDAY SAVER $4,499 $5,049
PLATINUM SERVICE EVERYDAY $6,599 $7,249
Itinerary

DAY 1- ARRIVE DARWIN
You’ve arrived in Darwin – it’s yours to explore. Spend the day at your leisure before checking in to your accommodation.
OVERNIGHT: 4 nights Hotel in Darwin


DAY 2- LITCHFIELD NATIONAL PARK
Litchfield National Park contains several types of typical Top End habitats including lush monsoon forests, termite mounds, unusual rock formations, waterfalls and cascades. First stop of the day is Florence Falls, where you have the opportunity for a scenic and interpretive bush and monsoon vine forest walk. There is also the chance for a swim by making your way down the stairs to the plunge pool below. Travel on to Tolmer Falls for a magnificent view of the water cascading down to the deep waterhole at the base of the falls. To finish the day, you will visit Wangi Falls, with its large crystal-clear pool, another relaxing spot for a swim. A great day for taking many fascinating photos, including the amazing stand of termite mounds. (B, L)


DAY 3- LEISURE DAY, DARWIN HARBOUR DINNER CRUISE
Today is yours to explore Darwin at your own pace. Take in a spot of souvenir shopping or simply relax at your accommodation.

Tonight, enjoy a two-and-a-half-hour dinner cruise on the ‘Charles Darwin’s’ Luxury catamaran in air-conditioned comfort. View the famous Darwin sunset while enjoying a delicious Territory style buffet with Australian seafood and local produce.

This evening, prepare to be amazed by the breathtaking and legendary tropical sunsets from a location like no other, savour the sights and feel the sea breeze as you sail and dine in comfort on a modern and spacious catamaran. Enjoy a sumptuous meal prepared onboard using local produce and fresh seafood. Relax and soak in the splendour of the skies, champagne flute in hand. (B, D)

 

 


DAY 4- JUMPING CROCODILES
This morning is free for you to explore Darwin at your leisure. Perhaps make your way down to the waterfront and enjoy the tropical Darwin weather. Much of Darwin’s action happens along its revitalised waterfront, which is lined with restaurants, shops, sandy lagoons and parklands.

This afternoon, your jumping croc adventure begins. Just 60 kilometres from Darwin lies the Adelaide River, home to more than 1600 crocodiles and the location of the famous Jumping Crocodiles. Travel down the Stuart Highway to the Adelaide River. Cruise the river and be thrilled as these awesome creatures launch themselves out of the water. The cruise will enable you to see these prehistoric creatures at close range. Afterwards, continue to the Window on the Wetlands Visitor Centre for views over the Marrakai Plains, and then it’s onto Fogg Dam Nature Reserve to see a wetland ecosystem up close. (B)


DAY 5- BOARD THE GHAN EXPEDITION IN DARWIN
This morning it’s time to board The Ghan. Settle in as you relax in your cabin or mingle with fellow travellers in the Outback Explorer Lounge. Enjoy lunch ahead of your Off Train Excursion in Katherine. In a region renowned for jaw-dropping natural assets, Katherine boasts one of the Top End’s best – the incredible Nitmiluk Gorge, home to the local Jawoyn people. The stunning Nitmiluk Gorge lies within the massive 292,000 hectares of the Nitmiluk National Park. You’ll have the chance to explore it from the water with guided cruise options – an Off Train Excursion you’ll never forget.

Alternatively, experience a glimpse into the lives of those who call the outback home and prepare to be mesmerised as you visit a huge cattle station owned by multiple Golden Guitar winner Tom Curtain . See the team work with a young horse, demonstrating how they build a bond and explaining the psychology between man and horse.

Enjoy the enthusiasm of the beloved working dogs as the team demonstrate how they build-up their confidence and prepare them for working life on the land.

The show is never complete without a few of Tom’s chart-topping songs – often performed with guitar in hand and from the saddle of a horse. This is a show not to be missed. (seasonal)
OVERNIGHT: 3 nights The Ghan (B, L, D)


DAY 6- THE GHAN EXPEDITION, ALICE SPRINGS
After breakfast you’ll arrive into Alice Springs, with plenty of time to explore the iconic town in the red heart of Australia. Prepare for a day of fascinating excursions and, in the evening, meet the rest of your fellow guests at a spectacular barbeque dinner under a million stars at the historic Alice Springs Telegraph Station. (B, L, D)


DAY 7- THE GHAN EXPEDITION, COOBER PEDY
From your morning stop at the outback outpost of Manguri, you’ll venture into the wonderful opal mining township of Coober Pedy, where more than half of the residents live underground. Here, you’ll enjoy a day of discovery, and a gourmet lunch in the most unique of locations: underground. Discover the incredible diversity of Coober Pedy’s spectacular Breakaways on your guided walking tour and take in the colourful low hills that appear from a distance which look as if they are ‘broken away’ from the higher ground of the reserve. The landscape was once an inland sea and over time has been transformed into a dramatic landscape that changes colour with the passing of the sun creating an almost surreal panorama, a truly remarkable landscape and one not to be missed. Dinner is served back on the train where you can enjoy a nightcap as your journey continues. (B, L, D)

 

 


DAY 8- THE GHAN EXPEDITION, ADELAIDE
Watch the dramatic scenery of the Flinders Ranges appear before passing through the mid north of South Australia for a mid-morning arrival into Adelaide, where your journey comes to an end. Leaving with you will be the memories of the awe-inspiring landscapes and the unique outback experiences that will last you a lifetime (B)

The Ghan

The Ghan offers more than just a transit between Adelaide to Darwin, It is unquestionably the most comfortable way to see the beautiful wilderness of Australia’s Red Centre. It is a hotel on wheels which runs through the heart of the country, covering the 2,979km between the south coast at Adelaide and the north coast at Darwin in two nights and three days. Most of the services entail two nights on the train, but The Ghan Expedition (Southbound) option adds an extra night on board.

The train’s name supposedly honours the Afghan camel drivers who arrived in Australia in the late 19th century with animals imported from India. The Ghan name is an old one, bestowed on the narrow-gauge trains that ran from the Adelaide–Perth line at Port Augusta to a series of railheads as construction crews slowly and intermittently worked their way north.

It took 50 years from 1879 to 1929 to get as far as Alice Springs and there the line stopped. Frequent floods and washouts encouraged the construction of a new standard-gauge railway further west, from Tarcoola to Alice, opened in 1980, before the original concept was fulfilled with the opening of the line on to Darwin in 2004. Added to the allure of the outback is Alice Springs, a town of only 29,000 people yet known the world over as a symbol of isolation so strong that even the philosopher Bertrand Russell had to go and see it for himself in 1950. Alice, as every local shortens it, is also the springboard for trips to the largest monolith in the world, Uluru.

Onboard you will find an all-inclusive sumptuous dining of regionally inspired menu paired with a selection of local wines, elegant private cabins, attentive service, and the camaraderie of your fellow travellers. And when the train stops, the adventures begin.

Choose from a huge range of included off-train experiences to create your own rich and rewarding personal journey through Australia’s outback and beyond. Choose from one of the following journeys to create the foundation for your next adventure or, extend the experience with a tailored holiday package.


PLATINUM SERVICE

Stylishly appointed, spacious suites complemented by discreet, personalised service and world-class food and wine make this a very special travel experience. Platinum guests enjoy premium extras like a full-size en suite, expansive window views from both sides of the train, and exclusive use of the Platinum Club carriage. You’ll also notice the Bollinger champagne, Australian Appelles Apothecary toiletries, Haigh’s chocolates, a nightcap at turndown, luxuriously soft linen, and more … it’s this attention to detail that you’ll recall long after your journey’s end. By day, your cabin is configured as a private lounge with deluxe seating, a table and two ottomans. By night, you’ll enjoy a deep, comfortable sleep as the lounges convert into a comfortable bedroom with either a double or twin beds.

It’s the perfect place to relax and take in the amazing views passing by your panoramic windows but, for a more social experience, head to the Platinum Club. Thoughtfully appointed to embody the spirit of the train’s Australian heritage, the décor features quartzite tabletops, timber flooring, brass fittings and leather banquette lounge seating in tones of ash, moss and sepia. The carriage offers a daytime lounge setting with adaptable dining options. As you’d expect from a first class service, the food and wine included in the Platinum Service is of the highest standard. Your fare includes hearty breakfasts, two-course lunches and four-course dinners. Vegetarian and special dietary meals are available when you make your booking. And, as a Platinum guest, the premium service level begins before you even board with private transfers included at the start and end of your journey within a 60 kilometre radius of the terminal.


Platinum services includes:

  • All-inclusive dining, beverages, Off Train Excursions and Outback Experiences
  • Spacious Double or Twin cabin almost twice the size of a Gold Service Twin cabin
  • By day, cabins are set up lounge-style with a moveable table and two ottomans
  • By night, lounges are converted to double or twin beds
  • En suite equipped with separate shower, vanity with cupboard space, toilet and Australian bathroom amenities
  • Power outlets and in-cabin safe
  • In-cabin music channels and journey audio commentary Panoramic windows offering views from both sides of the train Access to the exclusive Platinum Club for dining and socialising Freshly prepared continental breakfasts served upon request in-cabin Refreshments served in-cabin Transfers at the start and end of your journey available for guests within 60 km of the terminal 90 kg checked luggage allowance per guest (3 x 30 kg each).

 


GOLD SERVICE

Spend hours deep in conversation with a travelling partner or lose yourself in a lifetime of thoughts. And after a day of off-train activities, your cabin provides the perfect place to relax and recharge before heading for the lounge or dining carriage. With room to stretch out and all the comforts of home, Gold Service is the most popular level of service aboard The Ghan and Indian Pacific. You’ll enjoy private cabin accommodation together with all-inclusive dining, beverages and a range of fascinating Off Train Excursions at key stops.

 

Gold services includes:

  • For Gold Twin, a comfortable sleeper cabin featuring private en suite and upper and lower berths that convert to a three-seater lounge by day
  • For Gold Single, a compact sleeper cabin featuring a bed that converts to a seat by day and shared shower/toilet facilities located at the end of the carriage
  • Power outlets in cabin
  • In-cabin music channels and journey audio commentary available
  • All-inclusive dining in the Queen Adelaide Restaurant
  • All-inclusive Australian wines, beers, base spirits and non-alcoholic beverages
  • All-inclusive Off Train Excursions and Short Stops
  • Luggage allowance is 60kg per guest
  • Complimentary Shuttle bus transfers available in Darwin to selected hotels in the city centre

Gold Twin Cabins

The most popular choice of accommodation on The Ghan and Indian Pacific, Gold Service Twin cabins have everything you need to make you feel right at home for the amazing experience that lies ahead. This is your private oasis, a superbly comfortable overnight room to recline and let the rhythm of the tracks sway you to sleep ahead of your next adventure.

Gold Superior Cabins

A Superior cabin in Gold Service is a unique way to travel, you’ll enjoy private accommodation together with all-inclusive dining, beverages and a range of fascinating Off Train Excursions.

Gold Access Cabins

Gold Access Cabins are exclusively reserved for the mobility impaired. This cabin is subject to availability and assessment of the guest’s Fitness to Travel.

 


FOOD & BEVERAGE

In addition to the comfort of your beautifully appointed cabin onboard a Great Southern Rail train, you’ll find yourself indulging in sumptuous cuisine, fine wines, and camaraderie in our dining carriages. Taking our cue from the diverse environments our trains travel through, our expert culinary team works closely with local suppliers, farmers and providores to source the best ingredients, creating an innovative, regionally-inspired menu accompanied by all-inclusive fine wines and beverages.

Each of our three dining carriages has its own ambience and personality. The Queen Adelaide restaurant evokes the golden era of rail with an art deco atmosphere, the Outback Explorer Lounges offer camaraderie in a relaxed social setting, while the Platinum Club impresses with its quartzite tabletops, timber flooring and brass fittings for our Platinum Service guests.

Queen Adelaide Restaurant

Step out of your spacious cabin and into the exclusive, classically styled Queen Adelaide Restaurant where an all inclusive menu is prepared by on-board chefs using fresh local fare. Our seasonal menu features mouth-watering dishes such as saltwater barramundi and grilled kangaroo fillet. Fares include hearty breakfasts, two course lunches and three course dinners. Vegetarian, children’s and limited special dietary meals are available when you make your booking. You may also choose to complement your meal with our selection of wines and beverages which are also included in your fare.

Outback Explorer Lounge

The Outback Explorer Lounges are the social hub of the train, the perfect setting to get to know fellow travellers, enjoy a snack, and catch glimpses of the passing landscape through wide picture windows.

Platinum Club

The Platinum Club Lounge is hosted by a Platinum Host, serving drinks, cocktails and barista coffee. Request an afternoon refreshment from the all-inclusive beverage list, or simply choose from the self-serve bar. Our highly-experienced onboard culinary teams work closely with local suppliers, farmers and providores sourcing the finest ingredients to create innovative, regionally-inspired menus accompanied by all-inclusive fine wines and beverages offered on every route.

 


THE ROUTE NORTHBOUND


Day 1 – Adelaide
Departing Adelaide, what lies ahead is rugged, beautiful and spectacular – through the Red Centre to the tropical north of Australia. Settle into your cabin and watch the rolling pastoral lands of South Australia from your window, or meet your fellow travellers in the lounge car. Before long some of the oldest rock formations in the world, the Flinders Ranges, come into view. As darkness envelops the rugged outback, it’s time to indulge in a regionally-inspired dinner and all-inclusive fine wines and beverages.


Day 2 – Alice Springs
Begin with a freshly brewed coffee or juice as the day dawns at Marla, an outback outpost in the remote reaches of South Australia. It is here, deep inland, that you will enjoy a one of a kind experience, as you watch the desert come to life at sunrise. All aboard for brunch as you make your way through the MacDonnell Ranges to Alice Springs where a choice of Off Train Excursions awaits. Alice is an iconic Red Centre outpost. 1,500 kilometres from the nearest major city, it may be remote, but offers plenty to explore – home to doctors who fly, rivers that run dry, and a cast of colourful characters. Your time in the ‘capital out of the outback’ offers numerous opportunities to explore its historic legacy and unique environment.

Day 3 – Katherine and Darwin Your day dawns in the tropical north. The pristine wilderness of Katherine is stirring and powerful, and you’ll have the chance to explore it from the water or land with your choice of off-train experiences. Cruise the jaw-dropping Nitmiluk Gorge, learn more about its ancient Indigenous rock paintings and gain insight into the culture of the traditional owners of Nitmiluk, the Jawoyn people, or discover authentic outback life on a cattle station. As evening falls, arrive in Darwin to complete your epic Australian journey.

 

THE ROUTE SOUTHBOUND


Day 1 – Darwin and Katherine
Your journey begins with a morning departure from Darwin. Once you’re settled into your private cabin, mingle with fellow travellers or sample the exceptional food, wine, and service onboard. When it’s time for lunch, savour the regionally-inspired menu accompanied by a selection of all-inclusive wines and beverages, before an early afternoon arrival at the Top End township of Katherine. Choose between a relaxing cruise through Nitmiluk Gorge’s ancient natural wonders and exploring the region’s rich Indigenous culture, or experience a glimpse into the lives of those who call the outback home, with a fascinating day of discovery on a huge cattle station. Enjoy dinner as the sun sets over the outback, then back in your cabin you’ll find your bed turned down. Fall asleep as the train rolls soothingly onwards.

Day 2 – Alice Springs After your first night on The Ghan, you’ll be greeted by a morning view of the spectacular Red Centre. A full day of excursions awaits you in the outback town of Alice Springs. An optional upgrade is a scenic flight to Uluru, returning in time to meet the rest of your fellow guests at a spectacular barbeque dinner under a million stars at the historic Alice Springs Telegraph Station.

Day 3 – Manguri and Coober Pedy From your morning stop at the outback outpost of Manguri, you’ll venture into the weird and wonderful opal mining township of Coober Pedy, where more than half of the residents live underground. Here, you’ll enjoy a day of discovery, and a gourmet lunch in the most unique of locations: underground. Dinner is served back on the train where you can enjoy a nightcap as your journey continues.

Day 4 – Arrive Adelaide From your cabin window this morning you’ll see a dramatic change in landscape, as the rich ochre tones of the outback make way for the green fields of South Australia. Enjoy a leisurely brunch as you pass through the majestic Flinders Ranges and prepare for your mid-morning arrival into Adelaide, completing one of the world’s great travel experiences. In the smart southern city, you can extend your experience with a holiday package to the Barossa Valley, fascinating Kangaroo Island, or an expertly-curated tour of this food and wine loving capital.

Fine Print

Prices based on twin share. Single supplements apply for single travellers. Advance Purchase fares are subject to availability. Prices are subject to change.

All train travel, trip/holiday package, accommodation, day tour or overnight tour prices are quoted in Australian dollars inclusive of GST. Fares, packages and prices in this brochure are subject to change without notice prior to booking. If a guest has booked a rail journey that includes flights, hotel accommodation, car hire or touring, these components will not be booked until a booking deposit is received.

 

DEPOSITS

  • For Gold Everyday and Everyday Saver fares the booking deposit will be $500.00 per person rail journey.
  • For Advance Purchase rail only fares payment in full is required.
  • For Advance Purchase Holiday Package fares the booking deposit will be $1000.00 per person per rail journey.
  • For Platinum Everyday fares the booking deposit will be $1000.00 per person per rail journey.
  • All amounts payable per fare type must be received by us within 14 days of the booking being made.
  • Special Offer Fares are instant purchase fares and immediate payment at the time of booking is required. These special offers may also have different terms and conditions relating to when payment is due, cancellation of bookings and whether or not amendments can be made to the booking.

 

PAYMENT DUE

The full balance of payment will be due at 45 days prior to the date of travel. (Unless booking conditions state otherwise, such as special offers, third party supplier conditions.) For bookings made at 45 days or less prior to travel, full payment is required at the time of booking. If payment is not received, the booking will be cancelled.

For Advance Purchase Holiday Packages full payment is required six months prior to the travel date.

 

SINGLE SUPPLEMENT

  • A single supplement will be applied when a guest occupies a twin or double cabin on their own. Single Supplement on Holiday Packages will be applied and advised at the time of booking.
  • Advance Purchase amendments cannot be made less than fourteen(14) days prior to travel date and can only be made to travel dates ifthe change is greater than six (6) months prior to the new proposed departure date, subject to Advance Purchase fare type availability.
  • Special Offer Fares amendments of a confirmed booking are not permitted.
  • A request to reduce the number of guests travelling or the componentsof the holiday/rail package will incur a cancellation fee.
  • A request to amend the booking to increase the number of guests travellingor the number of components of the holiday/rail package will not incur an amendment fee but will require the payment of the additional fare/s.
  • Amendment of a confirmed Holiday Package booking (including rail and accommodation/touring together) will result in you incurring an amendment fee of $50 per person per travel journey,in addition to any costs charged by operators, and cannot be made less than fourteen (14) days prior to the date of travel.
  • An amendment to a confirmed booking cannot extend the date oftravel beyond twelve (12) months from the original travel date.

 

CANCELLATION

Everyday and Everyday Saver Cancellation Rules (rail only & holiday packages)

  • Within 14 days of booking (unless within 45 days of departure): Full refund of all amounts paid
  • More than 91 days prior to departure: Full refund of all amounts paid less $50 per person service fee
  • Between 90 – 46 days to departure: Loss of deposit
  • Between 45 days before departure or any time after departure: 100% cancellation fees apply

 

Advance Purchase rail only & Special Offers rail only Cancellation Rules

  • Within 14 days of booking (unless within 45 days of departure): Full refund of all amounts paid
  • More than 14 days after booking: 100% cancellation fees apply

 

Advance Purchase Holiday Package & Special Offer Holiday Package Cancellation Rules

  • Within 14 days of booking (unless within 45 days of departure): Full refund of all amounts paid
  • More than 6 months before departure: Loss of deposit
  • Less than 6 months before departure: 100% cancellation fees apply

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