Been there, dune that! The thing about the Tanami Desert is most people have not been there. In fact, this desert was not fully explored until well into the twentieth century, and it remains one of the most isolated and arid areas on earth. It is the third largest desert in Australia behind the Great Victoria and Great Sandy deserts.
Why is it unique? It takes two days to cross the vast expanse that is the Tanami Desert, and along the way, there are worthwhile stops for nature and outback lovers alike. This includes remote Aboriginal communities Yuendumu and Balgo; we hope to visit Balgo’s extraordinary art gallery showcasing paintings, etchings, photography, film and music created by over 300 local Aboriginal artists.
The only remaining species of Bilby, the Greater Bilby, has managed to survive in patchy populations throughout the Tanami. Whilst very hard to spot (nocturnals always are), we will keep our eyes and ears peeled. We will also camp at Stretch Lagoon, a lake that is part of a very important inland wetland system, home to at least 73 varieties of waterbirds. Wolfe Creek Crater also lies on the Tanami Track. At 880 meters wide, it is the second-largest meteorite crater in the world and is believed to be 300,000 years old.
Before reaching the Tanami, we will explore the West MacDonnell Ranges. This area offers beautiful nature walks and abundant birdlife, not to mention spectacular scenery and gorges. Keep River National Park is another highlight. The geological formations are fascinating; striped sandstone structures similar to the Bungle Bungles. The walks, wildlife and Aboriginal sites in the park make it a delightful end to the trip.
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Alice Springs – Kununurra
15 – 27 June 2023
Day 1 Alice Springs to Redbank Gorge (West MacDonnell Ranges)
Day 2 Redbank Gorge and surrounds
Day 3 Redbank Gorge to Newhaven Station
Day 4 & 5 Newhaven Station
Day 6 Newhaven Station to Mt Doreen Station Area
Day 7 Mt Doreen Station Area to Tanami Desert Bush Camp
Day 8 Tanami Desert Bush Camp to Lake Stretch
Day 9 Lake Stretch to Wolfe Creek Crater to Halls Creek
Day 10 & 11 Halls Creek to Keep River National Park
Day 12 Keep River National Park
Day 13 Keep River National Park – Kununurra
REVIEWS FROM 2022 TOUR
“There isn’t one particular aspect I enjoyed the most. It was the combination of 1. The diversity of arid landscapes, 2. The two very knowledgable guides, 3. The small size of the group, 4. How well we were looked after by the guides.” TG
“It was our third tour with Coates Wildlife and we have already booked again. We find that the tour guides and Naturalists provide us with the opportunity to travel and explore places in rural and remote Australia that we wouldn’t otherwise get the opportunity to see.” NC
“The small number of guests and great guides made conversations and the observing of wildlife very pleasurable.” KR
From all of us at Coates Wildlife Tours, happy travelling and we hope to see you out there!