A 6-day Australian outback tour (8 is better, and can be extended to this) way out west to wide open spaces, wonderful sunsets, clear starry skies, red sands, red kangaroos, grey kangaroos, echidnas, shingleback lizards, sand monitors, emus, flocks of wild budgerigars, Major Mitchell cockatoos (pink with red and yellow crests), colourful outback parrots, flocks of budgerigars and finches, wood swallows, bee-eater, apostlebirds, coughs, black kites and many other birds in the true outback ecosystems of Bowra and Currawinya National Park. Accommodation is comfortable but basic (no tv or swimming pool, except first and last nights in St George): the route maximises wildlife and wilderness and generally steers clear of usual tourist destinations. Option for 8-day 7 nights tours.
Leave Brisbane around 9.00am, visit a small zoo in Ipswich to see bibles and other creatures we won't see in the wild. Head on west stopping for any birds, reptiles or other creatures we might see along the way, lunch at the small isolated settlement of Moonie, and on to St George. We have usually seen a few parrots, emus, kites, lizards, grey kangaroos and other wildlife by now,
We take a late afternoon walk along the river looking for parrots, honeyeaters and other birds.
Dinner at a good local pub and overnight in a motel in St George
We set out soon after dawn to the long bridge across the Balonne River, usually seeing parrots, waterbirds and raptors. One guide will take the vehicle across the bridge, the rest ion the group walking across with the other guide, thus walking into what we consider the true outback - no more crops of cotton or sorghum or anything else - into many kilometres of semi-arid woodlands and red soils, seeing emus, red kangaroos, Major Mitchell cockatoos, and more. After a good lunch in Cunnamulla we continue on to Eulo to check in at the historic Queen Hotel and do some birdwatching around town and nearby waterholes. Only two rooms have private ensuite.
Dinner and overnight in Eulo
We leave before dawn with a picnic breakfast to enjoy beside a waterhole, watching for kangaroos, parrots and other wildlife coming to drink in the early light
We continue through the varied habitats of Currawinya NP, including two enormous Ramsar-declared lakes (one saltwater and one freshwater) if the entry track isn't flooded, with a picnic lunch along the way
Dinner and overnight at the tiny border town of Hungerford, at a hotel the was once regularly visited by the Cobb&Co. Bathroom is in a small building out the back, often harbouring frogs and geckos and a variety of attractive moths.
Alternatively, if guests desire, we can campout by the river, either in hammocks under the stars or in tents
Breakfast at dawn and a last exploration of Currawinya NP before heading back through Eulo to Cunnamulla and Bowra Station, formerly a large cattle station but long known as a birding hotspot, and now owned by the Australian Wildlife Conservancy, where we seek a great diversity of birds including Hall's babbler, crimson chat, woodswallows, Bourke's parrots, brolgas and many more
Overnight in shearer's quarters near a lagoon visited by many waterbirds, finches, parrots and others - basic but comfortable rooms, fully equipped kitchen bathroom in separate small building.
Dawn watch at lagoon for emus,, Major Mitchell cockatoos, flock of budgerigars and other birds.
Visit other waterholes and other habitats to continue looking for birds, kangaroos and reptiles
Head into Cunnamulla for a great pub lunch and back to St George for the night (unless we are doing the 8-day version, in which case we spend another two night at Bowra
Visit a large reservoir near St George for further birdwatching, then make our way back to Brisbane, stopping along the way for any further wildlife we may see.
Eastern Grey kangaroo
Western grey kangaroo
Raptors – wedge tailed eagle, black kite, whistling kites, others
Major Mitchell cockatoo
Bourke’s parrot, red-romped and various other parrots
Chats, honeyeaters, woodswallows, babblers, apostle bird, coughs and many others
Dragons, monitors, shingback skinks, geckos, pythons, freshwater turtles, other reptiles and frogs
What is included?
- All travel, guiding and accommodation, three meals most days, lunch and dinner on first day, breakfast and lunch on final day, morning teas, snacks, large water containers for re-filling drink bottles
What is not included?
- Alcohol other than one drink pr lunch or dinner when in town, additional snacks, souvenirs