Discover Australia's collection of premium guided walk experiences. These multi-day walks let you explore spectacular regions of the country in comfort.
By Sue Gough Henly
Walking is a great way to immerse yourself in Australia's natural environment. Great Walks of Australia is a collection of premium guided multi-day walks. The walks explore Australia's varied landscapes from Tasmania's wilderness and the outback of the Northern Territory and South Australia to the white sand coastlines of Western Australia and Tasmania. You'll trek through the rainforest hinterland of Queensland, walk UNESCO World Heritage-listed islands in New South Wales and Tasmania, and marvel at the mighty Murray River in South Australia. You’ll enjoy plenty of creature comforts, including hot showers, and some pampering too, with accommodation in sustainable eco-lodges, wilderness camps, glamping tents and luxury retreats. Gourmet meals showcasing regional food and wine are another highlight. So lace up your hiking boots, strap on a (light) backpack and follow your guide on an adventure into Australia's great outdoors.
Bay of Fires Lodge Walk, East Coast, Tasmania
In north-eastern Tasmania, the magnificent coastline known as the Bay of Fires appears as it has for thousands of years. The white sand beaches and orange lichen-covered headlands provide dramatic landscapes, diversity and wildlife. From October to May, you can walk along beaches, explore coves and see wildlife on the 33-kilometre (20-mile), four-day, three-night guided Bay of Fires Lodge Walk with Tasmanian Walking Company. Rest at Forester Beach Camp for the first night, then enjoy the award-winning Bay of Fires Lodge. On the third day the walk includes a half-day kayaking experience on the Ansons River, plus a stunning beach walk back to the lodge. There's time to relax, swim or treat yourself with a Signature Bath experience overlooking the ocean.
Cradle Mountain Huts Walk, Overland Track, Tasmania
Discover one of Australia's most spectacular World Heritage Areas while trekking the world-famous Overland Track, located in the peaceful terrain of Tasmania's Cradle Mountain-Lake St Clair National Park. The Cradle Mountain Huts Walk by Tasmanian Walking Company offers a 60-kilometre (37-mile), six-day walk in which you'll wander through ancient rainforests, alpine meadows and button grass plains once covered by glaciers. There are craggy peaks, majestic waterfalls, stands of King Billy pines and more than a few wombats along the way. At the end of each day, enjoy hearty guide-prepared meals and sleep in the comfort of the private Cradle Mountain Huts. Guests can choose to add a worthwhile side trip to Mount Ossa, Tasmania’s highest peak.
Freycinet Experience Walk, Freycinet Peninsula, Tasmania
The Freycinet Experience Walk covers the length of the Freycinet Peninsula on Tasmania's east coast. This four-day, three-night walk goes to remote and rarely explored corners of Freycinet National Park. Walk through the pink granite Hazard Mountains and rich coastal forests to the white sand beaches of Wineglass Bay. Travel in the footsteps of the Oyster Bay Tribe, walking the same ancient tracks trod 30,000 years ago. Welcomed each evening to the award-winning and privately located Friendly Beaches Lodge, you'll enjoy stunning architecture, works from some of Tasmania's finest artists, food and wine from the freshest local ingredients and a relaxing bath. In your private room, you'll fall asleep to the gentle sound of waves on Friendly Beach.
The Maria Island Walk, Maria Island, Tasmania
Tasmania's UNESCO World Heritage-listed Maria Island is a blend of rare wildlife, diverse landscapes and convict heritage. With optional walks on offer, guests can cover 25 to 43 kilometres (15 to 26 miles) on the Maria Island Walk. Explore empty white sand beaches, view wildlife, and enjoy gourmet food and wine. Discover 300-million-year-old shell fossils, white talcum-powder beaches, and soaring dolerite columns. You'll also spot wombats, kangaroos, penguins, dolphins, and even Tasmanian devils. At night, stay in secluded wilderness camps and a heritage house in Darlington, a World Heritage convict site. There is an optional trip to climb through rare cloud rainforest to the peaks of Mount Maria or Bishop and Clerk.
Three Capes Lodge Walk, Tasman Peninsula, Tasmania
Tasmania's dramatic Tasman Peninsula often feels like the edge of the world, with the wild South Ocean crashing on towering coastal cliffs and hidden sea caves. On the four-day, 46-kilometre (29-mile) Three Capes Lodge Walk, you'll take in the spectacularly wild Tasmanian scenery as you walk through forest and bush along the coast. You'll experience a boat voyage, dolerite spires and fine Tasmanian food and drink before settling in each evening in simple yet sustainable in-park lodges. This walk, offered by Tasmanian Walking Company, is the only guided walking company authorised to offer the Three Capes Track and stay within the national park each night.
Classic Larapinta Trek in Comfort, Northern Territory
Soak up the ethereal scenery of vast flood plains, razorback rocky outcrops and ancient land on a guided 72-kilometre (45-mile), six-day walk along the high ridgelines of the West MacDonnell Ranges. The Classic Larapinta Trek in Comfort by Australian Walking Holidays is ideal for the experienced and ambitious walker, with some challenging terrain highlighting key sections of the epic Larapinta Trail. You'll follow in the footsteps of the land's traditional Aboriginal owners, early explorers and modern adventurers. Sleep under the stars or under canvas in exclusive wilderness camps, which offer shower facilities and two-person tents, while your hosts prepare gourmet meals in the splendid isolation of the Australian outback. Be sure to take the morning walk up Mt Sonder to watch the outback awake at sunrise.
Twelve Apostles Lodge Walk, Great Ocean Road, Victoria
Offered between September and May, the four-day, three-night Twelve Apostles Lodge Walk by Australian Walking Company covers the last 55 kilometres (34 miles) of the Great Ocean Walk– an epic trail that follows the equally epic Great Ocean Road. Trek through cool-climate rainforest, walk along coastal clifftops and hear stories of shipwrecks and settlement. Visit remote beaches, spotting seals, wallabies, koalas and birds along the way. As a grand finale, you'll walk up to the Apostles and enjoy a scenic helicopter flight over their heads. The trail is graded overall as moderate, with easy and challenging sections. Nights are spent at the purpose-built walkers' lodge at Johanna Beach, where guests sleep in eco-luxe villas with ensuite bathrooms.
Margaret River Cape to Cape Walk, Western Australia
The 41-kilometre (26-mile), four-day, three-night Margaret River Cape to Cape Walk, by Walk Into Luxury, is a lodge-based, guided small group walk that combines the best parts of the Cape to Cape track with gourmet food and wine experiences showcasing this famous region. Walk through towering karri forests and along headlands and beaches where there are plenty of opportunities to swim in the ocean. The walk also features lunch with matched wines at Wills Domain winery, a private chef dinner showcasing local produce and a didgeridoo performance inside a magnificent cave. Stay all three nights in private villas with plunge pools overlooking the Indian Ocean at the luxurious Injidup Spa Retreat. Return transfers from and to Perth are included in the walk packages.
The Arkaba Walk, Flinders Ranges, South Australia
The four-day, three-night moderate grade Arkaba Walk presented by Wild Bush Luxury crosses 600 million years of geological history in the Flinders Ranges and the Elder Range in the private Arkaba Conservancy in South Australia. You'll spend two nights in luxury wilderness camps under the night sky (or within sheltered bush huts if you prefer) before indulging in one night in the gracious, fully restored 1850s Arkaba Homestead. Enjoy cold drinks and canapés as the ancient red rocks glow at sunset. An optional 'creekside massage' is available, and the walk experience package includes a one-way flight from Adelaide to the Flinders Ranges, returning through the winery region on the final day.
Murray River Walk, Murray River, South Australia
The Murray River Walk by Luxury River Trails starts in Renmark and explores South Australia's beautiful Murray River in the internationally recognised Riverland Ramsar Wetland. The easy walk covers 40 kilometres (25 miles) and operates between April and October. Expect to see ancient red gum forests, wetlands and red ochre cliffs lining the banks of Australia's most famous river. The daily walking routes are on private property and in conservancy areas with exclusive access for Murray River Walk guests only. Stay on a modern ten-berth houseboat with a deck spa overlooking the river and enjoy gourmet dinners of Riverland food and wine. Have a final lunch at the award-winning Wilkadene Woolshed Brewery.
Spicers Scenic Rim Trail, Scenic Rim, Queensland
The moderate to hard 27-kilometre (17-mile), two-day, two-night guided Spicers Scenic Rim Trail offers a panoramic expedition across mountains, escarpments, rainforests and ancient volcanic plateaus in Queensland’s Main Range National Park. Along the way, guides show you plants and animals and talk about the traditions of the region's Aboriginal inhabitants. Guests stay at Spicers Canopy, a luxury permanent glamping site with stunning views towards Mount Mitchell, Spicers Peak and Mount Cordeaux. Luxurious safari-style tents offer king size beds, bathrobes, timber floors and deckchairs on covered decks. You'll enjoy the outdoor hot tub after two big days of hiking. The second day is graded as hard.
Seven Peaks Walk, Lord Howe Island, New South Wales
A two-hour flight from Sydney, Lord Howe Island is a true Australian paradise. The Seven Peaks Walk offered by Pinetrees Lodge allows you to explore the spectacular scenery of the island on foot, seeking out sheltered swimming coves, subtropical palm forests, freshwater creeks, rugged sea cliffs and volcanic peaks. With an expert guide, you'll discover an exhilarating variety of marine and bird life, and test your limits with climbs to peaks and lookouts - a steady head for heights is required, but hikers keen for a more leisurely path can take alternate walks. Each night, guests return to their luxury boutique accommodation at Pinetrees to enjoy sunset drinks and a four-course dinner cooked by in-house chefs.