Central West Outback Adventure Drive

Multiple Locations

Nothing beats an outback road trip through the wide-open spaces, sweeping sand dunes and quirky towns of central west Queensland's 'big sky country'. Beginning in Longreach, the home of Qantas and the Stockman's Hall of Fame, this five day adventure drive will give you a taste of what life in one of Australia's most remote regions is like.

Journey Details

Duration
120 Hours
Distance
1463 Kilometres

Facilities

  • Pets allowed, enquire on booking

Other Information

Family Friendly:

Family friendly – please refer to operator's website for services and facilities.

Full Itinerary

Winton to Boulia

After exploring Winton's unique attractions, like the eccentric 'music fence', boulder opal displays and dinosaur fossil displays, head westward towards Boulia. Call in to Middleton, the pub on the side of the road with the world's most remote 'Hilton Hotel', and keep an eye out for the mesas, what the locals call 'jump ups', that are a reminder of the ancient inland sea that once covered this whole area. The Cawnpore lookout offers a spectacular view and information boards about these prehistoric landmarks.

Boulia is the heart of 'Min Min' country, and a visit to the sensational Min Min Encounter will give you the heebie jeebies as you find out just how eerie these mysterious lights are, and you may hope you never see one for yourself! The historic Stone House, the oldest house in town, now houses a collection of aboriginal artifacts, local memorabilia and a dinosaur fossil display.

Historic ruins in the area include the Min Min Hotel, on the way into town, and the police barracks, 19 kilometres north of town. The adventurous four-wheel-drive traveller can head to the Diamantina National Park, 150 kilometres south-east of Boulia, where the mighty Diamantina River flows through the Diamantina Gates.

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Route Details

Route Type
One Way
Level of Difficulty
Level 2: Suitable for families with young children
Mode of Travel
Car
Boulia to Birdsville

Heading south, don't miss the turn-off to the Vaughan Johnson Lookout on the border of the Boulia and Diamantina Shires. Its 'loo with a view' offers sensational views over the channel country, some of Australia's best cattle fattening land.

Explore Bedourie and soak in the tranquility of this desert oasis at the natural artesian spa and aquatic centre. Visit the historic Royal Hotel before heading south to Birdsville via the Bilby Way and keep an eye out for these little endangered marsupials, particularly in the early hours of the morning. Walk through the Carcoory Homestead Ruins and just before reaching Birdsville, look out for the patch of Waddi trees, an extremely rare species growing in only three places world-wide.

In Birdsville, sip a coldie at the iconic Birdsville Hotel, and enjoy one of the quintessentially outback pies, such as 'curried camel' or 'kangaroo claret', at the Birdsville Bakery. The 35 kilometre drive westward to the 40 metre high 'Big Red' sand-dune is worth it. Watch the sun set over the Simpson Desert or venture to Poeppel corner; the junction of Queensland, the Northern Territory and South Australia, 175 kilometres west of Birdsville but only for very well equipped four-wheel-drive travellers.

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Route Details

Route Type
One Way
Level of Difficulty
Level 3: Recommended for people with some bushwalking experience
Mode of Travel
Car
Birdsville to Windorah

The 350 kilometre drive to Windorah passes Betoota, Australia's smallest town. With a population of zero, this once-thriving Cobb & Co. exchange and inter-colony toll point declined after federation to leave a sole pub, which was abandoned in 1997. These days, Betoota comes alive twice a year for its annual horse and motorbike gymkhana and race meet, and the ghostly old pub still stands proud on the lonely gibber flat. Just down the road, a magnificent rainbow serpent is blazed upon a ridge and looks spectacular from both the road and the air. A little further and Deon's Lookout rises above the channel country flats and is a superb lunch stop for those heading on to Windorah.

In Windorah, the celebrated Western Star Hotel is a great place to meet some of the locals, while the Cooper Creek, a legendary channel country waterway, is a refreshing swim or fishing stop after a 16 kilometres nature drive to the east of town. Discover the picturesque red sand hills to the west of town and watch the magical sunset reflected in the thousands of mirrors mounted on the giant solar panels nearby.

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Route Details

Route Type
One Way
Level of Difficulty
Level 3: Recommended for people with some bushwalking experience
Mode of Travel
Car
Windorah to Longreach

Following north along the route of the Thomson River, continue on to Longreach. Stop off in the country towns of Jundah and tiny Stonehenge, home to just 30 people. Less than four kilometres from Stonehenge you will find a series of magnificent Rock Holes shaded by ghostly white gum trees, the perfect place to cool off. You will discover some glorious landscapes and scenic lookouts on this trip.

Onto Longreach, home of the Australian Stockman's Hall of Fame, Powerhouse Museum and Qantas Founders Outback Museum and a wealth of entertainment and warm, country hospitality. Another highlight of a visit to Longreach is a cruise on the Thomson River. Qantas Airlines began in nearby Winton, however its first main operations were from Longreach. So look out for a replica of the first Qantas booking office as you wander through town.

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Route Details

Route Type
One Way
Level of Difficulty
Level 3: Recommended for people with some bushwalking experience
Mode of Travel
Car

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Accommodation
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Tallebudgera Creek Tourist Park

Palm Beach, Gold Coast Area
  • Free WiFi
From AU$42 - 525
Tallebudgera Creek Tourist Park is located on the waterfront of the Tallebudgera Estuary, an ideal holiday spot for families who love the water. There’s a netted swimming area in the creek plus a patrolled surf beach 300 metres from the park.

Amore On Buderim Rainforest Cabins

Buderim, Sunshine Coast Area
From AU$200 - 325
Amore On Buderim is a boutique retreat for couples who are seeking that perfect romantic getaway or simply somewhere to escape for a few days. They are centrally located on the Sunshine Coast and only eight minutes from beautiful Mooloolaba Beach.

Island Gateway Holiday Park

Jubilee Pocket, Whitsunday Area
  • Free WiFi
From AU$30 - 205
At Island Gateway Holiday Park in Airlie Beach Whitsundays, Australia, you'll discover the wide range of accommodation styles and modern facilities. From camp sites and camp-o-tels, to Deluxe Spa, and Tropical Villas, you will find the perfect place to relax after a day of sightseeing the beautiful Whitsundays and Airlie Beach, or relax in the tropical pool.

BIG4 Treasure Island Holiday Park

Biggera Waters, Gold Coast Area
  • Free WiFi
From AU$47 - 471
Located on the sunny Gold Coast, their family friendly holiday park is the ultimate vacation destination offering a fantastic range of accommodation, activities and facilities. Treasure Island is surrounded by sun-drenched beaches and lush hinterland.

Flora Alba Accommodation

Maryborough, Fraser Coast Area
From AU$100 - 130
Flora Alba Cottage is light and bright, with French doors opening from the bedroom and living room on to a sunny verandah that overlooks the pool. Silky oak timber and coloured glass feature in the traditional country style decor of the mini Queenslander which is ideally suited to couples.

Bellthorpe Stays - Nature's Retreat

Bellthorpe, Moreton Bay Area
From AU$165 - 260
Bellthorpe Stays: Natures Retreat. Access to private waterfalls, rainforest, tracks, wildlife, wilderness plus farming. Bellthorpe Stays is the place to get away from it all and catch up on the rest and relaxation you've been missing out on, just over an hour from Brisbane, close to Maleny.

Hervey Bay Caravan Park

Hervey Bay, Fraser Coast Area
From AU$35 - 132
Hervey Bay Caravan Park, situated beside the Urangan Bowls Club, is well known and loved by its patrons for offering safe, secure, peaceful, attractive surroundings and a friendly atmosphere - being positioned with reserve and lakes on three boundaries enhances the quiet lifestyle available at the park.

Coral Sands Beachfront Resort

Trinity Beach, Cairns Area
From AU$152 - 350
Coral Sands Beachfront Resort is perfectly located right on the Esplanade facing the beach and only 15 minutes north of Cairns International Airport. Set on two acres of tropical gardens and opposite Trinity Beach, the resort features a large lagoon style swimming pool, barbecue areas, tour desk and a beachfront licensed restaurant, Lunico Tratoria, which is open for lunch and dinner.

Ramada Hotel Hope Harbour

Hope Island, Gold Coast Area
From AU$134 - 234
Ramada Hotel Hope Harbour is tucked away in the tranquil waterways of the northern Gold Coast. It offers the perfect launch pad to explore and experience the region's endless list of attractions and things to do, including theme parks, world-famous beaches, stunning hinterland, acclaimed golf courses and sophisticated dining and entertainment precincts of Sanctuary Cove.

at Marina Shores

Airlie Beach, Whitsunday Area
  • Free WiFi
From AU$225 - 600
Designed by renowned Ken Down Architects, Marina Shores Airlie Beach delivers unparalleled levels of liveability and accessibility. Marina Shores features a contemporary theme with gently curving forms ensuring wide frontages to complement its absolute waterfront setting.
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Note: Information on listed products and services are provided by the operator and were correct at the time of publishing. Rates are indicative based on the minimum and maximum available prices of products and services. Please visit the operator’s website for further information. All prices quoted are in Australian dollars (AUD).