Explore the awesome and remote Outback where sacred Aboriginal rocks rule the land
This is the land of ‘Dreamtime’, the part of Australia most in touch with its Aboriginal culture. The Northern Territory has waterfall-filled national parks and ancient art etched into rocks, and in the Outback, you’ll find pockets of time where there’s nothing but you and the rugged dirt landscapes – perfect for an exhilarating road trip. It’s where everything is a little wilder and every journey is richly rewarded for it.
- Catch sunrise and sunset at Uluru for spellbinding views at this magical landmark
- Explore rugged, natural wonders like nearby Kata Tjuta (The Olgas) and Kings Canyon
- Hike around Katherine Gorge in the Top End and see its waterfalls or cruise down the river and spot crocodiles
- Learn the enchanting creation stories around the Aboriginal Dreamtime and see rock paintings in Kakadu
- Visit Northern Territory's cities Darwin and Alice Springs for Outback culture and adventure-filled day trips.
Best time to visit Outback & Northern Territory
In the tropical Top End the dry season runs from April to October with warm but fairly dry days. Between November and March, there's increased rain and cooler temperatures. The central region is semi-arid and experiences four seasons; it does not generally experience the tropical rains from the north but as a desert environment can get pretty cold during winter.
Outback & Northern Territory holiday highlights
Australia’s most famous Outback Town, Alice Springs is many people’s gateway to the Red Centre. Visit local historic landmarks like the old telegraph station and the Royal Flying Doctor Service museum, and take in the views from Anzac Hill and the Alice Springs Desert Park. Slightly further afield are the rugged MacDonnell Ranges where you can take walks to spectacular gorges. Visit on the third Saturday in August and you may encounter the Henley-on-Todd Regatta.
From Alice Springs, it’s around five and a half hours’ drive to Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park where you can stay within sight of the great sandstone monolith for the famous sunset and sunrise views. In nearby Kings Canyon, you can get close-up edge views of the steep canyon below and visit the ‘Garden of Eden’.
Then there's Australia's Top End. Darwin is known for its sunsets and markets, and maintains a frontier aura, with the bush clamouring at the city limits. In Nitmiluk National Park, the 13 gorges of the Katherine River are a stunning sight for both day trippers and the resident crocodile.