Four Wheel Drive Holiday Tour Diary
Read all about our Four Wheel Drive Holiday Tours.
We have had the kind permission of one of our international guests to publish this account from their diary as they travelled on one of our Four Wheel Drive Tours. Hope you find it an interesting read as this is typical of our 4WD Holiday Tours.
Our Four Wheel Drive Adventure holiday was based around South Australia’s Flinders Ranges and other locations. OzTrax who were prepared to accommodate our needs at short notice and were more than happy to give us an awesome day rate deal to take us into the outback on a four wheel drive tour.
We booked a seven day tour, to locations in the Flinders and Gawler Ranges. Check this link out .
OzTrax collected us at the Hilton Hotel in Adelaide, in their beautifully appointed 4WD land cruiser.
Phil and Jen made us feel right at ease straight away. We settled in and became more and more relaxed as we travelled. A quick stop at Clare for a coffee and a few more questions, then off again before having lunch at Melrose. It was here we really sat down and worked out where would travel. Phil made it clear that he was flexible and he was prepared to travel a little further for us to see as much as possible as long as we didn’t mind sitting in the vehicles.
From Melrose we went to Pt. Augusta and we visited the Australian Arid Lands Botanical Garden.
From here OzTrax took us to Wadlata Outback Centre, how good is that rainbow serpent? The team took us to our accommodation for the night – a great outback motel.
Phil took us up to the lookout after to watch the sunset then out to an awesome Chinese restaurant in the Outback!! The next morning our destination was Hawker, via Quorn. Not far from Hawker Phil turns off to what we found out to be was the Kanyaka ruins. The ruins displaying the skills of many a trade persons. Some of the stonework even today is a credit to their skill. So many buildings, houses, stores, a blacksmith but what impressed me the most was the old shearer’s quarters and shearing shed. The guys explained to us how the shearing was done and the volume of sheep shorn all by hand. From here we went to Hawker for lunch and a look around the Flinders Ranges panorama then on to see Wilpena Pound.
At Wilpena Pound we took the most amazing scenic flight over the Flinders Ranges I have ever been on!
Next destination… Parachilna. Phil and Jenny took us on some amazing outback roads through some beautiful hills and gorges and still got us to our accommodation in plenty of time for a hearty evening meal at the Prairie Hotel. What a weird menu “road kill really”. My steak was perfect thanks very much. Beautiful sunset.
Next morning we go a little further north and visit the old town of Beltana. Fantastic! We now head back down the road towards Pt. Augusta so we can start our next part of the tour out into the Gawler Ranges. On our way back Phil as he has done before… turns off the main road and takes some back tracks so that we get the full experience of four wheel driving and the outback trails tourists never see!
After a relaxing night sleep at Port Augusta we are heading up the Stuart Highway to Glendambo, before again heading out towards the Gawler Ranges. With a stop at Pimba, Phil asks if we want to go and have a quick look at Woomera. A unanimous yes please so off we go. The display of old rockets in the precinct are certainly worth a look.
As we head west on gravel tracks again, passed ruins we encounter the first of many emus and kangaroos. How exciting! Most of the Roos were camped up in the shade under trees and the emus had the energy to run and they can really move.
Before we knew it we were at Kingoonya for a look around then we moved out of town, and headed for our first night of camping location at Lake Gairdner. What a spot to camp! Jen and Phil set up the camp as the rest of us went down to inspect the salt lake. A beautiful sunset, with the colour reflecting on the salt. When we got back to camp, the guys had already prepared our evening meal of Schnitzel and salad. Well done Jen! This was finished off with fruit salad and custard, nothing fancy but well appreciated. We all sat around in our chairs and do what everybody does look at the stars and laugh! What an amazing night.We were woken by Jen early enough to get up and down the lake to watch the colour in the sky glow over the salt. Watching the sunrise here is stunning and something I can recommend. When we got back to camp Jen had some bacon and eggs cooked up for us. Talk about getting spoilt.
First stop for the day Pondana Ruins The colours of the building stone really fits into the landscape. Phil says “do you want to see a submarine?”.
What out here, yep, ok let’s go. The sub he was talking about was at the entrance to Mt. Ive Station, really not expected right out here A small bit of backtracking to get us back on the road to our destinations of Kolay Mirica Falls, this I imagine would be absolutely stunning with water running.
There is still a lot of wildlife with today already seeing numerous Roos, emu and a couple of wombats. The wombats are my favourite. We had a quick look at a place called Stone Wall, basically a dam wall to hold back water. Phil encouraged us to get going to our next location of Pildappa Rock. This place impressed me and reminded me of photos I had seen of Wave Rock in WA.
Accommodation for the night was at the Minnipa Hotel Motel which is very comfortable. Next morning we are off to explore Streaky Bay, Pt. Kenny and all points in between. Then we made our way back to Pt Augusta and our next stop was going to be Pt. Germaine. This little place surprised me With its long jetty, lighthouse and a tidal clock (never heard of one before this).
Phil and Jen were now like family, they discussed with us and gave us so many options and yet still allowed us to make decisions. So we got on board and travelled via Pt. Germaine Gorge to Clare where did visit a soap shop and a couple of cellar doors. A good time to visit as we now had room for a couple of bottles to go home.
Phil and Jen got us back to Adelaide that night. We had a fabulous time, loved the flexibility, knowledge and care OzTrax showed us. It was more than we expected on so many levels, the four wheel drives were awesome, food, service, company and patience were just amazing. These guys are legends and can’t thank them enough.
Darren, Sophie, Florence & Albert.
OZTRAX takes you where regular tour groups don’t. Into the real Aussie wild – remarkable, hidden places in your own backyard. Where skies are vast, roads are rugged and tourists are scarce. Drop a pin on the map and OZTRAX will get you there, safely, in custom built 4WDs and fully-catered comfort.
Book a tour today by calling OZTRAX on 0419 850 759