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07 4658 3000 [email protected]
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2022 Birdsville

Desert Escape


Our popular FULLY INCLUSIVE tour featuring Birdsville, where the Channel Country meets the desert, Winton & Longreach

Day 1: Sunday – Longreach

Arrive in Longreach for the start of your Outback Queensland adventure.  You will be met at either Longreach Railway Station or Longreach Airport by your Savannah Guides Operator driver and host. Transfer to your accommodation for a Welcome Supper and tour briefing.   2 nights Albert Park Motor Inn, Longreach

Day 2: Monday – Longreach

Visit the world-class Qantas Founders Museum, eloquently telling the story of the founding of Qantas. Discover the inspiring stories of our pioneering heroes at the Australian Stockman’s Hall of Fame. Enjoy an orientation tour of Longreach mid afternoon.  Return to the Qantas Founders Museum for an exclusive dinner surrounded by aviation history, and the entertaining and informative Luminescent Longreach Sound & Light Show, which brings the 100-year story of Qantas to life.

Day 3: Tuesday – Boulia

This morning we drive to Winton and uncover the story behind the song that lives in the heart of all Australians.  We visit the Waltzing Matilda Centre, the first museum in the world dedicated to a song.  Follow a spectacularly scenic drive from Winton via historic Middleton Hotel, built during the Cobb & Co. era.  It was originally a changing station where tired horses were replaced with fresh horses on the Winton to Boulia route.  While at the pub hear entertaining yarns by the local publican over afternoon tea.  We stop at Cawnpore Lookout to view the stark flat-topped beauty of the surrounding Lillyvale Hills, before arriving into Boulia, the capital of the Channel Country. Overnight Australian Hotel or Desert Sands Motel, Boulia

Day 4: Wednesday - Birdsville

See the impressive Marine Reptile Fossil exhibit, Indigenous artifacts and other local treasures on a stroll through the Boulia Heritage Complex.  Then, be prepared to be intrigued, with a visit to the Min Min Encounter, a tribute to the famed Min Min Light phenomenon.   Witness spectacular 360-degree views from the Vaughan Johnson Lookout.  Lunch will be at the Simpson Desert Oasis Roadhouse.  Explore the remote town of Bedourie, located on a sand dune; overlooking the Eyre Creek floodplain. See the historic Royal Hotel, built in the 1880s with adobe bricks; still very much in its original condition.  Visit the Carcory Ruins a heritage-listed homestead built in 1877 and abandoned after years of drought.   Keep a look out for a rare stand of Waddi Trees which occur in only a few places in the world.  Arrive in Birdsville late afternoon.  3 nights Birdsville Hotel, Birdsville

Day 5: Thursday – Birdsville

See the Burke and Wills Tree on the Diamantina River, said to mark one of Burke & Wills’ final campsites. Take a stroll to Pelican Point Billabong with its abundant birdlife.  Tour the Australian Inland Hospital Mission and Royal Hotel Ruins, reminders of Birdsville as a pre-federation metropolis. Stand on the famous Birdsville Race Track which hosts the annual ‘Melbourne Cup of the Outback’.  See local Indigenous artwork at the Wirrari Centre then enjoy some lunch at the popular Birdsville Bakery. This afternoon is yours to relax or explore the town as you wish. Get ready for an amazing sunset & nibbles on ‘Big Red’ – toast the glorious outback sunset from atop Big Red, a 40m high sand dune marking the symbolic eastern edge of the Simpson Desert. We head back into Birdsville for dinner at the Birdsville Hotel Dining room.

Day 6: Friday - Birdsville

This morning we are joined by local guide Jenna Brook for a fabulous local insight into living and working in the Diamantina Shire.  We cross over the border to South Australia along a section of the famous Birdsville Track.  Originally established as a stock route back in the 1860s, it traverses three deserts, the Strzelecki, Sturt Stony and Tirari.  You’ll see some spectacular desert scenery along the section we travel so keep your camera ready.  Jenna will share stories about her family’s Organic Beef production en route to a cattle station.  We’ll relax under the gum trees for a casual lunch and billy tea while gaining a deeper insight into the property and OBE Organic business.  Return to Birdsville with time to relax and refresh before sharing a traditional Stockman’s dinner around the campfire.  On the menu will be a mouth-watering homemade stew made with the finest locally produced OBE organic beef – certified 100% organic.  Round off the meal with a side of damper, billy tea and a delicious rustic dessert.

Day 7: Saturday - Windorah

After a wonderful stay in Birdsville we set off to see the Dreamtime Serpent Indigenous artwork; an impressive hillside installation created with gravel and gibbers.  Visit Betoota, originally established in 1885 to collect cattle tolls and later as a Cobb & Co change station, the last resident died in 2004 making Betoota a ghost town until the recent reopening of the Betoota pub.  Take in spectacular views from Deon’s Lookout and see the JC Hotel Ruins, once part of the township site of Canterbury. Arrive into Windorah, said to be the only place in the world where two rivers form a creek! Late afternoon, we’ll take a short trip out of town to toast the sunset from beautiful wind-swept red sandhills. Have your cameras ready!  We then drive back into Windorah for dinner in the Sandhill Grill, located at the Western Star Hotel.  Overnight Western Star Hotel, Windorah

Day 8: Sunday – Longreach

This morning we will explore a small section of Welford National Park en route to our morning tea stop beside Boomerang Waterhole.  The Park was established in 1994 to protect the biodiversity of the Mulga Lands, Mitchell Grass Downs and Channel Country bioregions.  We will follow the Channel Country Way route through Jundah and Stonehenge to Longreach.  Enjoy lunch and a yarn with the locals at the Stonehenge Hotel.  Arrive Longreach this afternoon and check into your accommodation with time to relax and refresh before tonight’s activities.  Late afternoon, join the Drover’s Sunset Cruise on the beautiful Thomson River. Unwind with complimentary nibbles and purchase drinks from the onboard bar.  As the gorgeous sunset colours fade into starlight, we dock at Smithy’s Outback Dinner and Show for a fabulous evening featuring a two-course camp oven dinner and live entertainment on the river stage.   Overnight Albert Park Motor Inn, Longreach

Day 9: Monday

Following breakfast, your Outback Queensland adventure comes to an end with a complimentary transfer to your homeward bound connections.

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Prices (per person)

2022 Tour PricesTwin ShareSingle
9 DAY TOUR ONLY Longreach - Longreach (BDE9)$4,449*$5,249*
9 DAY RETURN FLIGHT PACKAGE Brisbane - Longreach - Brisbane (BDE9)
Includes Return Economy Flights
10 DAY FLY/RAIL PACKAGE Brisbane - Longreach - Brisbane (BDE10)
Includes One Way First Class overnight Rail Sleeper & One Way Economy Flight
11 DAY RETURN RAIL PACKAGE Brisbane - Longreach - Brisbane (BDE11)
Includes Return First Class overnight Rail Sleeper

Minimum tour numbers apply.  Itinerary subject to change.

*Rail price based on return Aust. Govt. Senior Card holder fares in a First Class Sleeper on the Spirit of the Outback between Brisbane and Longreach. Please ask for Queensland Pensioner and Full Adult rail fares. Included Economy flights are with an airline of Outback Aussie Tours choosing and subject to the airline’s booking and carriage conditions. Rail & Flights subject to availability.

Prices do not include:  travel insurance; meals not specified in the itinerary; drinks; laundry; optional activities; and items of a personal nature.

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Departure Dates

Tour Highlights

Tour Inclusions

Customer Reviews

  • Another Great Tour, as expected! Did a Cape York trip with Outback Aussie Tours 2 years ago and expected the same high standards for our Desert Escape Tour. We were not disappointed and definitely recommend Outback Aussie Tours for any of their tours. Our tour guides, Mark & Helen, were excellent - friendly, helpful, informative, highly efficient and kept us occupied / entertained during any long driving stretches. All meals were included and we also had lunches, nibblies &/or sunset dinners at a variety of interesting locations. Our touring was in air conditioned comfort, with our accommodation in the outback towns in surprisingly luxurious ensuite motel rooms - had been thinking these outback towns would be lucky to have donga-style rooms with shared amenities, but the outback towns and tour company certainly know how to look after the tourists.

    Lpl, Sunshine Coast
  • Our tour with Outback Aussie Tours would have to be one of the best holidays we have had,our 9 day trek took us to places like Stonehenge,Windorah,Boulia,Winton,and the jewel in the crown Birdsville. It was a real outback adventure with a lot of our travels taking us over corrugated roads and dirt tracks, our driver Robert and guide Cossie took us to and showed us places you would not see if travelling independently and they had a deep knowledge of not only places visited but points along the way. Included in the tour was a drive on the Birdsville track,dinosaurs at Winton,Qantas founders museum and Stockmans hall of fame in Longreach were just some. It was obvious both Cossie and Robert loved their work and it showed in the friendly and helpful way they interacted with the tour group. The tour also includes a drovers sunset cruise and dinner and show at Smithys camp,also included in tour is visits to homesteads,we were privileged to have the opportunity to visit the historic Rosebank Homestead at Longreach, meet Outback Aussies owner and his family and enjoy a lovely dinner prepared by his family, who not only were well presented but socially warm and friendly

    Chris S
  • Highly Recommended!! We have recently returned from a 6 day tour with Outback Aussie Tours on the Birdsville Desert Escape. It was a great tour with a great group. All the accommodation and meals were first class and the tour guides, Sarah & Rees, made the trip all the more special. This is our 4th long trip with this tour company and we have also been on a few day trips as well. We have thoroughly enjoyed every one of the tours and look forward to the next one!

    Billiejay, Sydney
  • You must travel with OAT! We recently had a fantastic Birdsville Desert Escape adventure with OAT. We were cared for from the moment we set foot in Longreach until we departed Longreach 9 days later. Nothing was too much trouble day or night for our hosts. Have a look at the itinerary on the OAT website. Wow!!!!. What wonderful places and scenery we visited. History recalled and today's events. Our OAT guides knew so much about the places we frequented and could not do enough to help in anyway that we needed. Wonderful en-suited accommodation. The farewell dinner in the dining room at Smithy's historical Rosebank Station was very special with a brilliant sunset and superb food. As was the boat trip on the Thomson River and Smithy's show. Go on go with OAT. They are the best.

    Herbie2219, Brisbane
  • I highly recommend this Longreach based tour group and cannot fault them. I learnt so much about how our country is so diverse, both in drought and in flood, it's beauty and it's harshness, it's culture and it's colour, it's smells, tastes, feel ... a richness in so many ways that words and pictures cannot capture fully. The journey from Longreach to Birdsville and back and all the townships small and large in between and the land most of all were mind blowing and soul enriching. Thank you once again Smithy for the wealth of information and for your undying passion for our Queensland country.

    Lynda H
  • Another Great Trip to remember! To travel to Birdsville with Outback Aussie Tours was a very rewarding experience with seeing the varying terrain between Longreach and Birdsville and being able to take in the various sights along the way with a driver and host to tell you all about he area and what you see as you drive along in this remote area visiting towns such as Windorah, Birdsville, Boodourie, Boulia and Winton then returning to Longreach. The various places to visit in the towns and the meals were extremely well done with plenty of food to eat.

    Christopher C, Brisbane
  • Escape Tassie's Autumn to see the real Outback of Australia! We flew from Hobart to Brisbane and then from Brissie to Longreach in Central Queensland. There we joined Aussie Outback Tours and thoroughly enjoyed about 10 days of very comfortable 4 wheel drive coach travel to such places as Windorah, Birdsville, Bedourie, Boulia, Winton and many other lesser known points of interest in this large outback circle of about 2500kms. Our Driver Robert, and tour Guide, Rob's wife Cossie provided a very comprehensive commentary on the various features along the route and it was clear that they really enjoyed the work they were doing. The various overnight establishments were of very good quality with respect to our accommodation and generally the meals were excellent. The Tour group of about 26 people from many parts of Australia , New Zealand and the UK, all got on very well and a lot of fun was enjoyed by all throughout the trip. The weather was fine with (almost) 100% blue skies and temperatures in the mid 30's during the days. We cannot recommend this trip highly enough for those who wish to see our expansive outback in great comfort. We are in our upper 70's and did not experience any problems with mobility etc.

    Colin W, Tasmania
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Past passengers save $200* per person on all Guided Holiday departures of 6 nights or more if booked at least two months prior to departure.

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Book and travel with four or more of your favourite people and you will receive $200*pp off your tour price.

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*Offers valid on new bookings for our 2023 Guided Holiday Program only and may not be combined. Conditions apply.
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