Rugged Drives: 4WD Tours & Experiences

December 28, 2018

With endless stretches of rugged outback, wild dunes and undulating plains, there are few better places on Earth to enjoy off-road advntures than Australia. This vast continent offers a host of scintillating off-road adventures and activities, so take your vehicle off the beaten track and set the pulses racing with these 4WD tours and experiences across Australia.

Fraser Island Tours

The world’s largest sand island, Fraser Island, is a natural playground for adrenaline junkies as well as those who appreciate the serene beauty of lakes, rainforests, beaches and rolling ocean waves. This is a stunning place to take time out but it also has a reputation for serious fun. The best way to travel is by 4WD and there are some truly incredible tracks and routes to follow. From tree-lined canopies to sun-drenched skies, there’s something for every explorer and a wealth of places to discover.

Fraser Island tours are designed to showcase the best of this beautiful island and they give you access to parts that are out of reach to those travelling independently. There’s also an opportunity to learn more about the island, to meet other tourists and to enjoy some hair-raising 4WD action. Highlights here include the Wanggoolba Creek boardwalk, Lake McKenzie, Eli Creek and Seventy-Five Mile Beach. Fraser Island is easily accessible from Brisbane, Noosa and Hervey Bay, and there are plenty of hotels on the island, including our ‘Special Place’ Kingsfisher Bay, for those keen to stay and explore for a little bit longer.

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Pinnacles Tour

Located in the heart of Nambung National Park, approximately 3 hours’ drive from the city of Perth, the Pinnacles are a unique natural feature drawing crowds from every corner of the globe. One of the most famous tourist attractions in Western Australia, these are a fascinating and intriguing collection of spire-shaped rock formations that rise out of the yellow sand dunes close to the coastline.

Dating back millions of years, these interesting natural formations are made from limestone whilst each one is different in shape and size, making for a mesmerising vista across the Pinnacles desert. Some stretch up to more than three metres tall and there’s a range of formations on offer. Some have rounded, dome-shaped tops, whilst others have jagged, conical peaks. With thousands of mounds rising dramatically from the ground, this is a truly breathtaking sight and an incredible backdrop for photographs too.

The Pinnacles 4WD Tour is an ideal option for those keen to combine urban adventures with the chance to discover the wild, rugged beauty of Perth’s iconic national parks. As well as providing spectacular views, a trip to the Pinnacles offers amazing opportunities to see wildlife species, such as galahs and wild emu as well as the local flora and wildflowers. The Pinnacles tour also includes stops at Caversham Wildlife Park and a lunch break at the charming fishing village of Cervantes on the stunning Western Australia coast. After marvelling at the Pinnacles, the tour then moves on to Lancelin, home of giant sand dunes – where the landscape and terrain is ripe for exploration in a 4WD vehicle.

This area boasts over 200km of dunes and there’s space to let loose and enjoy the thrill of the ride. Driving on sand dunes is a very different experience to navigating motorways and dual carriageways and this is a great trip for those who love being behind the wheel. Lancelin also offers a perfect base for trying sandboarding, another activity specially formulated for the terrain around this area and which is basically hurtling down the dunes on a board. It’s another hugely fun activity, but one which is also suitable for everyone. On offer are beginners’ runs, as well asthose geared towards the more fearless and more experienced.

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Outback Drive

The Outback can be unrelenting and unpredictable. For this reason, the best way to travel is by 4WD. Self-drive outback tours are not for the faint-hearted, but they offer dazzling rewards in the form of awe-inspiring scenery and once in a lifetime experiences.

The outback is vast, and getting from A to B takes times and patience. The upshot is that driving a 4WD surrounded by nothing but kangaroos for company is a pretty unique and special experience. For those planning to spend a little time in the outback and hone their driving skills Down Under, here’s a sample Outback 4WD tour itinerary:

  • Day 1 – Darwin to Katherine: explore Pine Creek, Hayes Creek and Adelaide River before touching down in Katherine, an authentic outback gem, which offers everything from mountains and gorges to Aboriginal art and waterfalls. The Katherine Gorge National Park is well worth a visit as a stop off along the route. This is an iconic start to the journey.
  • Day 2 – Katherine to Timber Creek: cruise along the Katherine Gorge and marvel at the Cutta Cutta Caves before heading to Timber Creek, a perfect base for visiting Gregory National Park and the Victoria River Crossing.
  • Day 3 – Timber Creek to Kununurra: make for the town of Kununurra via Hidden Valley National Park, with its unusual sandstone formations and the Keep River National Park, home to populations of the endangered Gouldian Finch – known for their brightly coloured feathers.
  • Day 4 – Kununurra to El Questro: leave the car at the hotel and take a scenic flight to witness the wonders of Bungle Bungle National Park, a magical collection of more than 1,000 beehive-shaped formations made from vibrant orange and black rock.

  • Day 5 – El Questro: discover the untouched homestead of El Questro. Scattered with waterholes and rivers, this is an idyllic spot to see birds, mammals and fish on a stop-off en-route.
  • Day 6 – El Questro to Halls Creek: tour the Emma Gorge before hitting the Gibb River Road to reach the town of Halls Creek, one of the few sizeable towns around the area and a great place for a night’s rest.
  • Day 7 – Halls Creek to Fitzroy Crossing: nestled on the edge of the Great Sandy Desert, the oasis of Halls Creek is perfectly located for visiting Wolfe Creek Crater National Park – the stunning aftermath of a meteorite that hit Earth some 300,000 years ago.
  • Day 8 – Fitzroy Crossing to Broome: explore the site of the original town before heading to Geikie Gorge National Park, which boasts an abundance of crocodiles, sharks and stingrays. Upon reaching Broome, take the opportunity to rest and recharge your batteries at Cable Beach.

If you would prefer to leave the driving to someone else, book onto one of our Outback tours, like the Untamed Kimberley or our incredible Outback Safari.

Cooktown 4WD

Situated in the tropics of North Queensland, Cooktown is accessible from Cairns via the Captain Cook Highway. One of the most scenic drives on offer in Australia, this tour takes visitors to some of Queensland’s most precious places, including Daintree National Park, home to the ancient, mysterious Daintree Rainforest.

The Cooktown 4WD tour offers a chance to enjoy a phenomenal trip along this beautiful stretch of coastline, which is flanked by giant, imposing trees. After crossing the Daintree River by cable ferry, visitors will arrive at the national park before embarking on a guided hike through the dense, exotic forests. After trekking, satisfy those hunger pangs with lunch at Lion’s Den Hotel before setting off for historic Cooktown. En route, it’s possible to catch a glimpse of the Black Mountains and enjoy panoramic views of the Coral Sea.

Cooktown is an unspoiled jewel, which is surrounded by bright blue-green water. The town has plenty to offer visitors, including the famous James Cook Museum, located in a 19th century former convent building, this is one of the most popular museums in the state. It offers a fascinating insight into the history of Cooktown and the life and travels of Captain James Cook, as well as being a great place to learn some more about the history of the country on your travels through the land and its extreme beauties. After departing Cooktown, visitors will head home via the Mulligan Highway, which offers views of remote cattle stations and the Palmer River goldfields.

Kimberley 4WD Tours

There’s no better place on this planet to enjoy a camping adventure than the Australian Outback. The Kimberley Crossing Camping Adventure is an experience like no other. This trip offers the opportunity to immerse yourself in the outback, get back to basics and see some incredible sights, scenery and places along the way. Travelling from Darwin to Broome, Kimberley 4WD tours take in a plethora of staggeringly beautiful stop-offs designed to provide every visitor with an unforgettable experience in the outback.

Highlights along the way include the majestic Nitmiluk National Park, the sandstone towers and domes of the Bungle Bungle range, the waterfalls, gorges and cliffs of the Cockburn Ranges and the spectacular Echidna Chasm – among many, many others. This magical route takes visitors on a twisting, turning adventure packed with all the geographical features imaginable. From giant stone stacks and plunging gorges to raging falls and tranquil lakes, every day offers a dazzling array of treats for the senses. Travelling by 4WD is a practical way to get around, but it’s also great fun too!

Australia is a unique country, which has some of the most diverse geography on the planet. Covering a vast area that spans more than 7.6 million square kilometres, Oz boasts a collection of regions, which are defined by different climates, landscapes and historical influences. From the golden beaches and the tropical forests to the arid outback and the wild dunes, there’s no place better suited to those with a sense of adventure.

4WD tours are designed to take visitors to places that aren’t easily accessible by other means of transport. They offer unrivalled sightseeing adventures, but it’s also incredibly enjoyable to put your foot on the gas on a rugged outcrop or a mammoth sand dune. There’s a huge range of 4WD tours on offer all over the country, from the coast to the desert, and this is a brilliantly exciting way to get around, take in the views, and enjoy everything Australia has to offer. Choose from our exciting self drive itineraries or hire a 4WD vehicle of your own and create your own route.

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