News report | | 23/12/2021 | ±4 minutes reading time

Australiaʼs highlights are found not only in the cities, but also outside them. An Australian visa allows you to stay in Australia for three months. More than enough time to explore the wilderness of Australiaʼs Outback!

What is the Outback?

The Outback is the name given to Australiaʼs vast wild regions. More than 70 per cent of Australia is included in the Outback, which is about 5.6 million km² (an area as large as half of Europe). The Outback is therefore extremely varied. During a drive through the Outback you will encounter both lush landscapes and dry deserts. The area is largely uninhabited. Of the almost 26 million inhabitants of Australia, only 800,000 live in the Outback. About a quarter of these are indigenous Australians, the Aborigines. The Outback has only a few towns and villages. The largest of these is Kalgoorlie-Boulder, but the best-known cities are Darwin and Alice Springs.

Preparing for a trip to the Outback

It is important that you prepare well for a journey through the Outback. One thing is to read about the size of the Outback, another thing is to experience it. You can be on the road for hours in a car without the landscape changing. Due to the long, straight roads, travellers can get distracted and accidents are not uncommon on these roads. It is therefore advisable to take plenty of breaks while driving to recover both physically and mentally.

To drive through the Outback, a four-wheel drive vehicle is generally recommended. Not only are some roads in the Outback difficult to drive on, but international travellers are not allowed to drive on unpaved roads in the Outback without a four-wheel drive system. It is possible to rent a car in cities like Alice Springs and Darwin, but also in Adelaide.

Mind your speed when driving through the Outback. The (often deserted) roads of the Outback invite drivers to maintain high speeds, but this is not recommended. It can happen, for example, that a kangaroo jumps onto the road. In this case, you should have enough time to brake safely.

The Australia visa can also be used in the Outback

No special visa is needed to travel through the wilderness of the Outback. You can also explore the Outback with the normal Australian visa. The visa is valid for one year and you can stay in Australia for three months per visit. However, the Outback is so gigantic that you will probably need several trips if you want to visit all the areas. The eVisitor visa allows you to make an unlimited number of trips to Australia during the validity period of one year. There is no need to apply for a new visa each time you leave the country, and you can return later in the year.

Please note that to travel through Aboriginal areas, such as the Great Central Road and Tjukaruru Road, you will need a special permit. This permit is free, and it can be obtained online. So, check in advance if your route will pass through Aborigine areas.

HHighlights of the Outbac

Uluru

Uluru, also known as Ayers Rock, is one of the most popular tourist attractions in the Australian Outback. This gigantic rock formation is 348 metres high. Most of it lies under the ground. Uluru is of great cultural value to the local Anangu Aborigines. They organize tours during which they explain the surroundings and the cultural and historical aspects of Uluru. Uluru is especially known for its beautiful colours, which seem to change throughout the day. During sunrise and sunset, the rock has an impressive red colour.

Kakadu National Park

In the north of Australia, near Darwin, you will find Kakadu National Park. With an area of almost 20,000 km², Kakadu is by far the largest national park in Australia. Kakadu is mainly known for its sea crocodiles (the largest living reptiles in the world), which are found in large numbers, but there are also more than 270 species of birds in the park. The area in which the national park is situated has been inhabited for more than 40,000 years. Because of this, ancient cave paintings and other archaeological highlights can be admired in various parts of the park.

Kings Canyon

Kings Canyon is an impressive gorge with walls that are more than 300 metres high. The gorge is located in Watarrka National Park, in the north of the Australian Outback. Kings Canyon has several hiking trails leading visitors through the gorge. The shortest of these trails is two kilometres long. The longest, the Kings Canyon Rim Walk, is six kilometres long and can easily take four hours. But for many, it is worth the effort, as the route goes all the way to the top of the canyon, providing spectacular views.

The Devils Marbles

The Devils Marbles, or the "marbles of the devil", are found in the Devils Marbles Conservation Reserve. These are naturally rounded stones that vary greatly in size: some have a diameter of six or seven metres, while others have a diameter of only a few decimetres. Seeing the sometimes perfectly rounded boulders on the flat plains of the Australian Outback is a unique experience that should not be missed.