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  • Reflections of Lawn Hill Gorge

    NO LONGER AVAILABLE
  • Cobbold Gorge

    NO LONGER AVAILABLE
  • The historic Savannahlander train. Image credit: Savannahlander/Facebook

    NO LONGER AVAILABLE
  • Indarri Falls

    NO LONGER AVAILABLE
  • Riversleigh Fossil Fields

    NO LONGER AVAILABLE
  • Atherton Tablelands

    NO LONGER AVAILABLE
  • Eastern Grey Kangaroo

    NO LONGER AVAILABLE
  • Undara

    NO LONGER AVAILABLE
  • The Gulflander RM93. Image credit: Gulflander

    NO LONGER AVAILABLE
  • Undara Lava Tubes

    NO LONGER AVAILABLE
  • Brolgas near Normanton

    NO LONGER AVAILABLE
  • Sunset over the Gulf of Carpentaria

    NO LONGER AVAILABLE
  • Cobbold Gorge

    NO LONGER AVAILABLE
  • Explore dusty outback roads

    NO LONGER AVAILABLE
  • Reflections of Lawn Hill Gorge

    NO LONGER AVAILABLE
  • Cobbold Gorge

    NO LONGER AVAILABLE
  • The historic Savannahlander train. Image credit: Savannahlander/Facebook

    NO LONGER AVAILABLE
  • Indarri Falls

    NO LONGER AVAILABLE
  • Riversleigh Fossil Fields

    NO LONGER AVAILABLE
  • Atherton Tablelands

    NO LONGER AVAILABLE
  • Eastern Grey Kangaroo

    NO LONGER AVAILABLE
  • Undara

    NO LONGER AVAILABLE
  • The Gulflander RM93. Image credit: Gulflander

    NO LONGER AVAILABLE
  • Undara Lava Tubes

    NO LONGER AVAILABLE
  • Brolgas near Normanton

    NO LONGER AVAILABLE
  • Sunset over the Gulf of Carpentaria

    NO LONGER AVAILABLE
  • Cobbold Gorge

    NO LONGER AVAILABLE
  • Explore dusty outback roads

    NO LONGER AVAILABLE
  • Herberton Historic Village

    NO LONGER AVAILABLE
   

9 Day Gulf Savannah Discovery

  • Journey to remote towns, parks & waterfalls by 4WD
  • Visit stunning Lawn Hill N.P & Undara Lava Tubes
Includes 2 historic train rides, accom. & more

You don’t need to travel to Africa to experience the untamed, golden savannah. It’s just across the ditch in Queensland! Wild and untouched natural landscapes, exotic animals bathing in cool waterholes, and golden grasslands that rustle in the warm breeze… the northwest 'Gulf Savannah' is a region of incredible beauty and diversity, and it’s more accessible than you might think.

This nine day discovery tour ex Cairns will showcase the people, the places and the stories that make Queensland’s Gulf Savannah an essential destination for every intrepid traveller. Along the way, you’ll journey through the scenic Atherton Tablelands, stop in the once-prolific gold mining settlement of Mount Surprise, ride two historic trains - the Savannahlander and the Gulflander RM93 - and also visit Camp 119 from Burke & Wills’ ill-fated expedition. Enjoy a sunset cruise on the Gulf of Carpentaria, explore the remarkable Lawn Hill National Park, snake along the Cobbold Gorge on a boat cruise, go behind the scenery to experience the unique Undara Lava Tubes and more!

This once-in-a-lifetime outback odyssey includes transport aboard a private 4WD bus, eight nights accommodation and 25 meals, and commentary from qualified Savannah Guides at key locations. Sound like an adventure worth embarking on? 2021 is the year to make it happen.

ITINERARY

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After an early morning departure from selected accommodation, your holiday begins, travelling up the Gillies Range to the Atherton Tableland. Enjoy a stop at Lake Barrine, a beautiful crater lake formed 17,000 years ago, for a short walk to the Twin Kauri Pines, before travelling on to Herberton.

Explore the Historic Village of Herberton, an open air museum where you can delve into the folklore and romance of yesterday’s Australia. Sit in the schoolhouse. Stand at the bar of the pub. Enjoy a latte in the Bakerville Tearooms. The award-winning attraction is more than a vintage precinct – it’s a tangible buzz of things past with over 50 original buildings with intact interior displays, original machinery and vehicles, plus thousands of antique items and period memorabilia.
 
In the late afternoon continue to the town of Malanda and settle into the Malanda Lodge, situated on 11 acres of manicured tropical gardens. All rooms have ground-level balconies and views to enjoy the tranquillity, or maybe spot their resident platypus family in the large pond. Malanda is well known for its rainforest walks, panoramic views, wildlife and a very successful dairy industry. It is also home to the heritage-listed Majestic Picture Theatre, known as the oldest continually-operating cinema in Australia.

Find hotel pick up locations below: (timings subject to change)
- 6.30am Queens Court Hotel
- 6.35am Coral Tree Inn
- 6.40am Novotel Oasis Resort
- 6.50am First City Caravilla Caravan Park
- 7.00am Big4, Coconut Caravan Park

Overnight: Malanda Lodge, Malanda
Meals included: Lunch;Dinner

An early start sees us travelling west on the Kennedy Highway towards Mount Surprise, where we will enjoy lunch with a snake show. Afterwards, travel aboard the historic ‘Savannahlander’ train as it tracks towards Einasleigh. There is enough time to have a beer in the pub or head down and check out Copperfield Gorge before the train departs for Forsayth. From here, travel on to Georgetown where we stay overnight. Georgetown is a pleasant, sleepy little town on the Etheridge River which is surrounded by rich beef cattle country and some of the best gemstone areas in Queensland.

Overnight: Latara Motel, Georgetown
Meals included: Breakfast;Lunch;Dinner

Enjoy a morning stop on the shore of Croydon’s Lake Belmore before heading Normanton for lunch. Here you can check out its famous landmarks: the ‘Purple Pub’, historic Burns Philp General Store and a replica of Krys, the 8.63m crocodile. Continue on to Karumba on the Gulf of Carpentaria to enjoy a spectacular Gulf sunset on a cruise. Overnight in Karumba, a popular fishing destination and industrial port on the banks of the Norman River. Each winter, anglers from all over Australia arrive to try their luck in the fish-rich waters of the Gulf.

Overnight: The Karumba Lodge, Karumba 
Meals included: Breakfast;Lunch;Dinner

Back through Normanton this morning and a poignant visit to Burke & Wills Camp #119, the most northerly campsite of the ill-fated expedition of 1860. Across the vast ‘Plains of Promise’ to Leichhardt Falls where you may see the beautiful plunge waterfall (rain dependant) and then stop in the Barramundi capital of Burketown for a quick visit. Continue on to Adels Grove in the Lawn Hill National Park, where we spend two nights amidst the glorious outback.

Overnight: Adels Grove, Lawn Hill National Park
Meals included: Breakfast;Lunch;Dinner

A relaxed day enjoying Lawn Hill National Park, a spectacular oasis set amid the spinifex clad Constance Range. Enjoy a cruise that offers an up-close look at the Lawn Hill gorge and a stunning view of the Indarri Falls. The gorge is a haven for wildlife, not to mention a birdwatcher's paradise. Don’t forget your camera! Swimming or paddling a canoe (optional) up the gorge is highly recommended. Return to Adels Grove this afternoon.

Overnight: Adels Grove, Lawn Hill National Park
Meals included: Breakfast;Lunch;Dinner

This morning depart Adels Grove, with the first stop at the World Heritage-listed Riversleigh Fossil Fields, a paleontological treasure trove recording the history of Australia’s mega-fauna of 20 million years ago. Enjoy lunch at Gregory followed by a short break at remote Burke & Wills Roadhouse before travelling on to Normanton. Enjoy the night in Normanton.

Overnight: The Gulfland Motel, Normanton
Meals included: Breakfast;Lunch;Dinner

This morning we depart from Normanton’s famous Railway Station, known for its Victorian architecture. Climb aboard the historic ‘Gulflander RM93’ train for a ride through the savannah landscape across the Norman River to Critters Camp. Continue on to Black Bull Siding, then the old gold mining town of Croydon and its Historic Precinct. This afternoon visit Georgetown and Forsayth on our way to Cobbold Gorge, where we stay tonight. 

Overnight: Cobbold Gorge
Meals included: Breakfast;Lunch;Dinner

This morning enjoy a cruise on Cobbold Gorge’s beautiful and secluded waterway, lined with spectacular carved Hampstead sandstone, some 135 million years old. Afterwards travel on to the famous Undara Lava Tubes in the Undara Volcanic National Park, a Savannah Guides Station. There's campfire entertainment after dinner before retiring to your accommodation.

Overnight: Undara Lava Lodge, Undara Volcanic National Park
Meals included: Breakfast;Lunch;Dinner

After breakfast in the Australian bush, an experienced Savannah Guide will meet you for an informative tour of the world’s largest, longest and most accessible lava tube system. We continue on our journey with a scenic and leisurely drive over the Tropical Tablelands, past the Wind Turbines at Ravenshoe, and stopping off at the magnificent Curtain Fig Tree. We then make our way back to Cairns, where you will be taken back to selected accommodation.


Meals included: Breakfast;Lunch

Tour Inclusions

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  • Discover the spectacular Gulf Country of northwestern Queensland on tour
  • Travel through the Gillies Range to the Atherton Tablelands
  • Explore the Historic Village of Herberton open air museum
  • Overnight in Malanda, surrounded by lush rainforest
  • Visit the beautiful crater lake of Lake Barrine, formed 17,000 years ago
  • Stop in the old gold mining settlement of Mount Surprise
  • Ride the historic ‘Savannahlander’ train from Mount Surprise to Forsayth 
  • Stay in the farming town of Georgetown on the Etheridge River
  • Enjoy morning tea on the shores of Lake Belmore in Croydon 
  • Visit the ‘Purple Pub’ and Burns Philp General Store in Normanton
  • Enjoy a sunset cruise on the Gulf of Carpentaria of Karumba 
  • Visit Camp #119 from Burke & Wills’ ill-fated expedition
  • Admire the small-but-beautiful plunge waterfall of Leichhardt Falls
  • Visit Burketown, the barramundi capital of Australia
  • Spend 1 full day within Lawn Hill National Park, an oasis amid the Constance Range
  • View the cascades of Indarri Falls on a cruise along Lawn Hill Gorge
  • Explore World Heritage-listed Riversleigh Fossil Fields, one of the most significant fossil deposits in the world
  • Travel across the savannah landscape aboard the 'Gulflander RM93’ train
  • Enjoy a cruise along the Hampstead sandstone-lined Cobbold Gorge
  • Tour Undara Lava Tubes - the world’s largest, longest and most accessible lava tube system
  • Visit the magnificent Curtain Fig Tree in Yungbarra, one of the largest in North Queensland
  • 8 nights accommodation on the tour
  • Enjoy 25 meals including daily breakfast
  • National park fees
  • Professional Tour Leader
  • Private 4WD Bus transportation with A/C
  • Return transfers from selected Cairns accommodation

Important info

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On purchasing this Travel Offer you are bound by the General Terms and Conditions, in addition to the specific terms and conditions outlined in this Important Information. 
 
Please note: all additional charges are payable direct to your Travel Consultant in NZD (unless otherwise stated).



Travel offer is valid for travel on selected dates until the 15th September 2021.
 
This travel offer is priced for one person based on twin share. 
 
Single Traveller Supplement
For solo travellers a mandatory single supplement of $810.00 applies.
 
Departure Dates (2021)
June: 30
July: 7
August: 4, 11, 18, 25
September: 15
 
Departure Cities
Cairns



Accommodation Used


- Malanda: Malanda Lodge

- Georgetown: Latara Motel

- Karumba: The Karumba Lodge

- Lawnhill National Park: Adel’s Grove

- Normanton: The Gulfland Motel

- Cobbold Gorge: Cobbold Gorge

- Undara Volcanic National Park: Undara Lava Lodge

Please note: All travellers will receive rooms with private ensuite bathrooms.

 

Extra Nights
- Cairns Queens Court Hotel (Pre/Post Tour) - $125 AUD per room per night including breakfast
- Cairns Novotel Oasis Resort (Pre/Post Tour) - $209 AUD per room (excludes breakfast)
Please note: extra nights are requested and booked directly through the tour operator after purchase.
 
Maximum Room Capacity
2 People.
 
Child Policy
- No child discounts. Full price applies for all children travelling with their parents.
- Valid for Children 7 years old and over.
Please note: Children must be accompanied by a responsible adult 18 years old and over to travel. No unaccompanied minors allowed.
 
Triple Share
Not Available
 
Bedding Configuration
2 x Single, or 1 x Double (subject to availability).
 
Adjoining / Interconnecting Rooms
Subject to availability and at the hotel's discretion. Please enquire on booking if you require this option.



Minimum group size 12, maximum group size 24 per vehicle.



- International Flights
- Domestic flights / transfers not stated in the itinerary
- Visa fees and requirements (a visa for Australia is not required if travelling on a New Zealand passport)
- Meals/beverages not stated in the itinerary 
- Optional gratuities/tipping
- Optional activities/tours
- Personal expenses
- Travel insurance (Strongly recommended)



TOUR GUIDE VS. TOUR LEADER
Tour Guide
Often locals with intimate knowledge of an area, its culture, and history. Their role entails providing commentary, routing the tour, and seeing that people have a good time. They are a licensed, qualified expert who supplies specific information on history, art, architecture and culture of the city/village/attraction in which he or she is guiding the tour. The guide meets the group at the required place and leaves the group at the end of the tour, they do not travel with the group. 
 
Tour Leader
An experienced person tasked with ensuring the smooth operation of tours, as well as providing practical support to passengers throughout the whole trip. Their role primarily includes assisting with accommodation, transportation between locations, and communication with tour guides in each stop. A tour leader may provide general guidance around a city or village, and offer information on the place visited on the bus, however they are not required to have specific knowledge on art, architecture, or history. They are not allowed to provide a guided tour or commentary of a city/village/attraction once there and if caught doing so, can be fined. 
 
Please note: Tour leaders/guides are not a standard inclusion in all travel offers. Tour leaders/guides will only be made available when particularly required to enhance the experience of the destination featured. 
 
CLIMATE & AVERAGE TEMPERATURES
Karumba
The Karumba lies on 4m above sea level Karumba has a tropical climate. In winter, there is much less rainfall in Karumba than in summer. This climate is considered to be Aw according to the Köppen-Geiger climate classification. In Karumba, the average annual temperature is 27.1 °C. The annual rainfall is 876 mm. The driest month is July, with 1 mm of rainfall. With an average of 260 mm, the most precipitation falls in January. The warmest month of the year is November, with an average temperature of 30.5 °C. July has the lowest average temperature of the year. It is 22.0 °C.
 
LUXURY 4WD TOUR
Travel these remote regions in modern purpose-built Isuzu off-road 4WD tour-vehicles with reclining seats, footrests, retractable seat belts and panoramic windows, road cam, TV and on-board toilet, air-conditioning, PA system, and contact with Royal Flying Doctors for your safety and peace of mind. Sat phones are included in all vehicles. With a minimum of 12 and a maximum of 24 passengers, you are promised nothing short of a high-class adventure into remote Australia on a unique and quality tour.
 
Clothing & What to Bring
Casual gear is a must. You will need minimal changes of clothing. T-shirts, jeans, shorts, bathers, bath towel, a pair of rubber soled shoes or joggers, a warm jumper or jacket, hat, torch, insect repellent and toiletries. A track suit is most useful, too.
 
Meals
25 meals are included in the tour, for all other meals; lunches and dinners the tour leader (when available) will offer assistance with reservations, suggestions and directions to local restaurants. It is your responsibility to notify TripADeal of any dietary requests/requirements. Please note; we will do our best to meet your requests/requirements, however cannot guarantee that we will always be able to.
 
Luggage
You will be responsible for all your personal belongings whilst on the tour. With regards to luggage, you must carry your own luggage from the coach to the hotel room and back to the coach. The driver will assist with the uploading and off-loading of the luggage from the coach. Due to Government Workplace Health and Safety Regulations luggage cannot exceed 10kg. Luggage space is VERY LIMITED, so please restrict your luggage to ONE small SOFT travel bag ( 300mm x 300mm x 700 mm) and a small day pack per person. No hard suitcases or bags with wheels please. Any excess luggage can usually be stored at your hotel, or if your post tour accommodation differs, please arrange for your luggage to be transferred to your post tour accommodation.
 
OTHER
Fitness Level Required / Mobility
Our vehicles are not equipped with wheelchair access, so unfortunately our tours are currently not suitable for wheelchair users and those less mobile. All tours require that you are in general good health. Gulf Savannah tours require a moderate level of fitness, as walks to locations may be on uneven ground. You will need to be able to carry your own bag to your accommodation.
Please note: If you have any mobility issues or if you are over 80 years of age a doctor’s clearance may be required before we can confirm your booking. Please contact TripADeal for further information. If you have any concerns please consult your healthcare provider prior to purchase/travel.
 
Gratuities / Tipping
Gratuities (tips) are not included in the tour price for services of the tour leader (when available) and driver throughout the tour. Tipping is optional and at the customers discretion.
 
Sightseeing
Please note: In the event entrance to a site is affected by changes in operating hours or public holiday closures, your itinerary where possible, will be adjusted or a similar activity will be offered in its place (subject to availability).



A tourist visa is not required if travelling to Australia on a New Zealand passport.
Please note: Passengers who are not New Zealand citizens must check with the respective consulate or visa agency to determine what their visa requirements are and what personal identification is required. It is also important to note, some areas of employment such as journalism, government authorities and charity organisations may have additional restrictions in applying for Visas. This may in turn affect the type of application required.



We are proud to offer a range of travel insurance products - please ask your Travel Consultant for more information.



Post-Purchase Change


This includes booking changes requested by you, including but not limited to those changes requiring an airline ticket or a Purchase Confirmation reissue.

- $50 NZD per change request post-purchase + any additional charges applied by the travel partners associated with the order. 

 

Supplier Fees
In the event the Travel Offer you have purchased is unable to proceed, and/or a travel Supplier is unable to fulfil the Travel Offer due to external circumstances (Limitation of Liability e.g. a Force Majeure event), there may be a fee or amount of money that is withheld by our Suppliers and is unrecoverable. This may be due to non-refundable airline tickets, cancellation penalties with cruise cabins or unrecoverable payments with our land/accommodation partners. TripADeal has committed to these costs as your Agent and will endeavour to recover all funds committed and/or paid for your Travel Offer, but this may not be possible in all circumstances. If refunds are not available from Suppliers, we will endeavour to obtain a travel credit on the best terms available and communicate these outcomes to you. In the event, TripADeal is unable to obtain a refund or travel service credit, or part thereof, this cost is passed on to the customer as a Supplier Fee. This fee is not revenue-raising and is paid to or withheld by our suppliers when recovering payments.