Red Centre ExplorerRide through an extraordinary landscape of crimson desert sands, spinifex grasslands and native mulga forest, lush secret valleys and deep gorges. Marvel at the world famous icons of the 'outback': Uluru and Kata Tjuta changing colour at sunset and discover true wilderness riding in the legendary Australian outback. This is a spectacular short break into the mysterious heart of Australia, a quick getaway to the outback!
The Red Centre Explorer
For an area so remote, the crimson heart of Australia plays host to an incredible number of places renowned across the globe for their astounding natural beauty or quirky outback charm. This short outback break is the perfect no-hassle getaway into a region many never get to visit, but all regret not seeing.
There's the unique atmosphere of Alice Springs, one of the most remote settlements in the world, not to mention the visually arresting Glen Helen Gorge - a natural wonder often ignored by visitors to the area. Added to that there's the iconic sights of Uluru, arguably one of the most recognisable landmarks on the planet, plus nearby Kata Tjuta and its wind-sculpted rock formations, pervading sense of serenity and walking trails cooled by the surrounding crimson rocks. Kings Canyon surrounded by towering escarpments completes the selection of some of mother nature's most spectacular achievements, and now you have the enviable opportunity to experience them all on two wheels via a great mix of dirt and road riding.
There simply isn't a better way to experience nature's finery!
Day One - Alice Springs to Glen Helen Gorge
Set deep in the harsh outback 'the Alice' is a modern oasis in an otherwise inhospitable desert. Ideally situated next to some of Australia's great wonders it makes an ideal starting point for this exploration of the red centre.
We leave Alice Springs around mid-morning and head west from the town aiming to arrive at the amazing Standley Chasm in the late morning so as to catch the most spectacular time of day, when the sun is at its highest and briefly fills the chasm with bright light turning the towering canyon walls a vibrant red colour.
We continue onwards along the smooth asphalt of the Red Centre Way through the scenic West Macdonnell Ranges National Park, to arrive at our overnight stop of the Glen Helen Homestead Lodge some time around the mid afternoon. This gives us plenty of time to visit the stunning Glen Helen Gorge on the banks of the Finke River and perhaps even indulge in a cooling swim.
Glen Helen Gorge provides a cooling interlude..
Day Two - Glen Helen Gorge to Kings Canyon
The going gets a little rougher on day two as we leave the asphalt behind and hit the dirt of the iconic Mereenie Loop Road. We'll traverse an impossibly ancient landscape comprised of intricate walled canyons, expansive valleys, isolated deserts made up of the iconic red outback sands and plenty of spinifex plains before arriving at the spectacular Kings Canyon in Watarrka National Park.
It might be a bit of a 'bouncy' day in the saddle but the experience of riding through the hauntingly remote outback with the amazing Kings Canyon as a reward at the end of the day, makes the day one that you'll remember for a long time to come!
Day Three - Kings Canyon to Uluru
The morning of day three is spent enjoying the 'Rim walk' around the perimeter of Kings Canyon, it's about 6km and involves quite a steep ascent at the start but it's definitely worth the effort to get the best views of the canyon. It's an amazing gorge surrounded by sandstone escarpments over 100 metres high, dotted with palms and other vegetation clinging on valiantly in the multitude of crevices. It's a sacred area for the local aboriginal people and once you gaze upon the deep canyon from the top of the surrounding walls you'll likely see why!
Back down at ground level we join the smooth the asphalt for an easy afternoons riding through the shimmering desert landscape, before finally arriving at one of the greatest natural geological spectacles on earth rising up from the surrounding desert into the huge blue skies above: Uluru, spiritual heart of Australia.
One of the most recognisable landmarks on the planet, Uluru certainly doesn't disappoint. We'll ride out to the special sunset viewing point for what will be one of the highlights of the tour, watching in awe as the monolith changes hue from light brown to deep crimson as the sun retreats towards the horizon. A once in a lifetime visual spectacle and if you haven't already got a 'bucket list', an experience worth starting one for just so you can cross it off.
Day Four - Local area
The fourth day on tour is officially a 'rest' day, but there's so much to see and do in the area that taking it easy will be far from your mind!
There's plenty of scope for visiting Uluru to get up close and personal on one of the many looping walking tracks around the base, or if you're feeling more adventurous there are options for helicopter flights, camel treks and plenty more besides. Of course if you'd rather use the rest day for the purpose it was originally intended then you can simply kick off your boots and relax at the nearby Yulara Resort.
Another 'must see' to explore during day four are the amazing rock formations of Kata Tjuta also known as 'The Olgas', named for the tallest peak in the group. They're around 30km west of Uluru and an easy ride along the asphalt. A very sacred area for the local Pitjantjatjara people the region has spawned many legends and some interesting stories are associated with the unusual natural sculptures. Certainly worth lingering in the shaded canyons along the 'Valley of the Winds' walk (7km) and pausing a while to soak up the atmosphere. There are a couple of other walks around the rocks as well if you'd rather opt for a shorter stroll into history.
Our final day takes us via the asphalt back to Alice Springs stopping en-route at the remote Curtin Springs and Erldunda Roadhouses, which offer up some great views of the nearby Mount Conner. Part of the same geological system which forms Uluru, Mount Conner is often mistaken for its more famous neighbour. It's a spectacular example of the variations in geology that abound in what would otherwise be a fairly featureless area of desert and with a better P.R team who knows, perhaps Mount Conner will one-day be as well known as Uluru.
Mount Conner is located on private land (Curtin Springs Station) so access is generally restricted, but we're thrilled to be able include a ride into the area and a tour of Mount Conner itself as part of this five day expedition. We've been granted privileged access to Curtin Springs Station and the environmentally sensitive areas around the base of Mount Conner, so there's no better way to get up close and personal with this often ignored geological wonder.
Once we're finished exploring around Mount Conner and Curtin Springs Station it's a relaxing ride back to 'the Alice' and when we roll into town we celebrate our final night on tour and relive five amazing days at liberty in the centre of Australia.
B.Y.O.B - Bring your own bike
Pillion passenger / Support vehicle passenger: AU$ 2,200
Pillion passengers are not permitted if the Suzuki DR650 is selected as the steed of choice for this tour.
If you choose to 'bring your own bike' it will need to be approved by us in advance. No scooters in the wilds of the Outback please!
You can 'mouse-over' the bike you are interested in to see an image of that type of bike. Images are for illustration only though and may not represent the exact bike available.