It’s been one great year for Great Walks of Australia, with many prestigious awards won and more people than ever walking across this vast country. They’ve been fortunate to experience some of Australia’s most iconic natural landscapes, become one with nature and be rewarded with memories that will last a lifetime – one step at a time.
This year, the magical landscapes and stories of an ancient land in South Australia’s outback were shared with more people from more corners of the globe than ever before.
Guests of the Arkaba Walk by Wild Bush Luxury told us in as many words… “service was so thoughtful, friendly and detailed”; “Charlie has encyclopaedic knowledge and nothing was a problem. The pace was spot on”; “Passion for conservation and fabulous staff make Arkaba a special place to be”; and “Good balance between comfort and feeling part of the great outdoors”.
If you’re a lover of good food and wine (let’s be honest, who isn’t?) the Murray River Walk offers guided walks by day, and three course dinners on a modern houseboat by night; it’s the perfect way to experience the best of South Australia, on land and on water. Guests of this year’s walking season were lucky enough to come face to face with some of Australia’s most well-known wildlife: echidnas, kangaroos and emus all made appearances much to the delight of walkers, but it was the avid bird enthusiast who won out with over 108 different species sighted from May to September. The Whistling Kite was one of the most common birds to be spotted on the trail and the Freckled Duck provided a once in a lifetime birdwatching opportunity for some lucky walkers.
Margaret River’s wildflower season was booming this year with everything looking beautifully lush and green after winter, filled with lots of colourful orchids and coastal flowers lighting up the Cape to Cape Walk by Walk into Luxury. Every moment of this premium experience has enthralled guests – one in particular was delighted “to be treated in such personalised fashion. Nothing was too much trouble for the guides and transport staff.” She went on to say she “would not hesitate recommending it to anyone and everyone.”
There’s no doubt that Tasmania has a lot to offer – from jaw-dropping mountainous scenery, to breathtaking coastlines and diverse marine and wildlife. It’s therefore no surprise that guests of the Freycinet Experience Walk have experienced much excitement recently, with humpback whale sightings along the Freycinet Peninsula as these magnificent animals migrate down the coast. Meanwhile on The Maria Island Walk one guest summarised their experience with “The Maria Island Walk is our first guided walk, so our future expectations are now very high. I can’t see how your walk could be improved.”
The desert ranges of Australia’s red centre also offer a rare perspective unique to this part of the world. The Classic Larapinta Trek in Comfort provides the perfect blend of adventure and comfort, where guests this year noted it as an opportunity to “… just be ourselves – a small escape from our everyday lives – to reconnect, recharge and relax. We knew we had something special that week and we soaked it all in. So, as we slip quickly back into the routine of our individual lives, we will hold on to the memories of this trip and hopefully “find that space” in our minds and mentally transport ourselves there for a brief moment in time when life gets a bit too much.”
As the newest member of Great Walks, Blue Mountains Grand Traverse by Auswalk kicked off with their first walk last month – enjoying a backdrop of incredible rock formations and gum forests that seem to extend forever. Our other new member walk for the year, Seven Peaks Walk by Pinetrees on Lord Howe Island was also a great hit with season 2018 now sold out and bookings for 2019 coming in already.
After such a wonderful year of discovery and with many special offers available, now is the perfect time to lace up your walking shoes and take the next step towards a great adventure… on a great walk of Australia of course.