Kimberley Expedition: Australia’s Wild Northwest Cruise

Darrin Bennett
Take a zodiac past the dramatic landscape of Australia
Darrin Bennett
Take a zodiac to get closer to wildlife
Bob Fowler
Appreciate the beauty of Kimberly's falls
Tony Karasconi
Admire the rock art found in the caves of Kimberly
Darrin Bennett
The dramatic landscape of Kimberly
Jan Butchofsky Houser
The National Geographic Orion is sleek and at your service
Mick Fogg
Keep in shape in the exercise room aboard the National Geographic Orion
Explore Australia's Wild Northwest on this 11-day Australian cruise. Visit the King George River and Falls, Vansittart Bay, and walk to see the aboriginal cave paintings of the region. Beautiful scenery and rich wildlife makes this cruise a must-do!

Day 1

    Darwin / Embark

    Arrive in Darwin and transfer to the National Geographic Orion. Spend the night at sea.

    Days 2-3

      Com / At Sea

      Arrive at Com for the National Geographic Orion to clear customs and immigration. While the ship is docked, you are able to briefly go ashore before the ship departs. Spend the remainder of the day at sea and settle in to the ship, visit the library or the bridge, and attend staff lecture.

      Day 4

        Wyndham & The Bungle Bungle

        Journey to Wyndham and Purnululu National Park, home of the breathtaking Bungle Bungle range. These ancient hills resemble giant beehives and form deep chasms with palm trees and long gorges. Board an included charter plane to view the landscape from the air. Alternatively, enjoy an Ord River Cruise to Lake Argyle. Navigate a massive stretch of river between Kununurra and Lake Argyle (Ord River Dam) before viewing the Lake from a scenic lookout.

        Day 5

          King George River & Falls

          The National Geographic Orion will drop anchor and zodiacs will take you up King George River. Featuring dramatic, vertical sheer canyon walls, the river drains into the highest single-drop falls in the Kimberley. There is an optional challenging hike to the top of the falls where you will have the opportunity to cool off with a swim in one of the freshwater rock pools.

          Day 6

            Vansittart Bay

            Join the naturalists on an exploration of an outdoor Gwion Gwion Aboriginal art gallery. The rock images, thought to be up to 40,000 years old, were discovered by Joseph Bradshaw in 1891. There is also the wreck of a DC-3 aircraft nearby, which became lost and crashed during WWII. If time allows, explore the crash site and the remains of the plane.

            Day 7

              Hunter River (and optional helicopter to Mitchell Falls)

              Sail for one of the most scenic parts of the Kimberley coast: Hunter River. The area is lined with green rainforest, mangroves and soaring red cliffs. The National Geographic Orion will drop anchor near Wunumpurramarra, or Naturalists Island, a stunning backdrop for the day. Many crocodiles live in the The Hunter River and you may see them on a zodiac trip through the mangroves. The distance from Naturalists Island to the famous Mitchell Falls is about 30 miles, which you may choose to visit via an optional helicopter excursion.

              Day 8

                Montgomery Reef & Raft Point

                Arrive at Montgomery Reef at high tide and, if conditions are right, the tide may drop rapidly enough for a raging torrent of water to erupt. This phenomenon allows miles of surrounding reef to rise out of the ocean. Take a zodiac into the reef to watch cormorants, egrets, and sandpipers forage for sea life trapped on the surface of the reef.

                Next, land at Raft Point and take a guided climb up to rock saddle which forms an outdoor Aboriginal art gallery. The art is an account of the Wandjina clan on the ‘Great Fish Chase.’ View the images of the Wandjina spirits with their distinctive haloes, plus dugong, crocodiles, fish and snakes.

                Day 9

                  Talbot Bay / Horizontal Waterfalls

                  Visit the Horizontal Waterfalls, which were created by the rapid tidal fall on the ocean side of the cliffs. When the conditions are right, a ‘waterfall’ may form as the trapped landward waters cascade out through the narrow gap to the ocean side. Take a zodiac for an exhilarating trip to witness this extraordinary phenomenon. Later in the day, join the naturalist team on an excursion to Cyclone Bay and to explore the twisted geological folds of the ancient seabed.

                  Day 10

                    Nares Point & Crocodile Creek

                    In the morning, sail for Nares Point, a geological finger of sandstone protruding into the ocean. This area provides great opportunities for zodiac safaris and guided beach walks. The nearby Crocodile Creek defies its name, as its vertical embankments keep it crocodile free.

                    Day 11


                      Arrive in Broome and disembark the National Geographic Orion. Transfer to the airport for your connecting flights onward.
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                      * Itinerary operates in reverse.
                      Single supplement varies by itinerary.

                      Deposit & Payment

                      Initial deposit is variable, and most travelers will call our office and pay the deposit with a credit card. We accept Visa, Mastercard, AmEx, and Discover. Alternatively, you can send a check to our Missoula, Montana, office or register online at:

                      Final payment is due 100 days prior days prior to departure.

                      Final payment by check, bank transfer, credit cards.

                      Booking last minute? No problem! Please contact one of our trip planners, and we can get you on your way if booking less than 100 days prior days prior to departure.

                      Click here to see a copy of our Terms and Conditions.

                      Cancellation Policy

                      Days Prior to departureFee
                      180+ days$750