Borroloola to Katherine – 6 day roadtrip (Savannah Way guide – part 3)

Here’s part three of our incredible Savannah Way roadtrip guide. Enjoy!

Part 1 link: Savannah Way guide – Part 1

Part 2 link: Savannah Way guide – Part 2

Day 1: Borroloola to Cape Crawford

Distance: 105km

After completing part 2 of our Savannah Way road trip, start your six-day journey from Borroloola. Enjoy a light breakfast at Paperbark Cafe before heading 76 kilometres north-west to Butterfly Springs. Here, you can relax in picturesque thermal springs or venture off into surrounding bushland. A 4WD is required to visit Butterfly Springs; if you don’t have wheels, spend the morning exploring Seven Emu Station’s culture, wildlife and heritage. Then, head to Cape Crawford.

Image by @carol_randall_ (shared with permission)

Upon arrival, we suggest taking part in a ‘Lost City’ Tour. The ‘Lost City’ is a unique geological formation comprising sandstone columns formed millions of years ago. The tour includes a 10-minute helicopter flight (landing among the columns), followed by a 1.5 kilometre guided walk to a secluded cave. Here you will see Aboriginal art sites and learn about local fauna and flora. We suggest booking tours through Coolibah Air. Finish the day with a tasty meal at The Heartbreak Hotel Restaurant and Bar – you won’t be disappointed!

Day 2: Cape Crawford to Daly Waters

Distance: 285km

Today you’re en route to Daly Waters! Wake up bright and early – you have a five-hour drive ahead. Along the way, stop to stretch the legs and grab a bite to eat. When you arrive, explore the local area; visit Daly Waters Aviation Complex, which contains the Northern Territory’s oldest hangar. Here, you can immerse yourself in the town’s aviation culture and history. Finish the day with dinner at Daly Waters Pub.

Image by @terryjencik (shared with permission)

Day 3: Daly Waters to Mataranka

Distance: 168km

After brekky, head north-west towards Elsey National Park. This 13,800-hectare park is located just 13 kilometres east of Mataranka. Here, you will discover Aboriginal and World War II history, bushwalking tracks, fishing and boating. The Roper River begins in this park, flowing gently in dry season and flooding in wet season. Explorers will discover Bitter Springs and Mataranka Thermal pool, perfect places to swim and cool off. There are multiple walking tracks throughout the park, varying in distance. If you’re feeling energised, we suggest taking the ‘Botanic Walk’ – a 1.5 kilometre (45 minute) trek.

Image by @linda_kuster (shared with permission)

When you’ve had your fill of nature’s wonders, jump back in the car and head towards Mataranka – today’s final destination.

Day 4: Mataranka to Katherine

Distance: 108km

Begin the day with early breakfast at Territory Manor. Then, head north-west towards Nitmiluk National Park. This trip is a slight detour away from Katherine (today’s final destination); however, it’s totally worth it! The Nitmiluk National Park is home to 13 picturesque gorges and covers vast areas of escarpment country. Explore by foot, boat, canoe or helicopter. If the weather’s nice, swim at Edith Falls, a plunge pool located on the park’s western boundary. Finish your adventure at Nitmiluk Visitor Centre, where you will learn all about the cultural and spiritual significance of the gorge. Soak up the history of the Aboriginal rock paintings on the sandstone walls, some of which are thousands of years old.

Image by @laurajstuttard (shared with permission)

Continue on to Katherine where you’ll stay the night.

Day 5: Katherine to Adelaide River

Distance: 205km

Although Katherine is the final destination for this trip, we have added an overnight detour to Adelaide River. This extra stopover will help you get the most from your Savannah Way road trip.

Enjoy breakfast at Finch Cafe before setting off towards Litchfield National Park, approximately two hours from Katherine. Here, you can explore the park, discovering stunning waterfalls cascading into crystal clear pools and weathered sandstone pillars. Take on one of the many walking tracks, leading to scenic lookouts with panoramic views – take a snap for the ‘gram’!

Image by @ellemayell (shared with permission)

Finish the day by heading to Adelaide River where you can enjoy a tasty meal at Digger’s Bistro – yum!

Day 6: Adelaide River to Katherine

Distance: 205km

It’s time to head back to Katherine, the final destination of this six-day roadtrip. It is up to you whether you use today to explore more of the Katherine region or end your journey upon arrival. Either way, we hope you enjoyed this travel itinerary and take a little piece of Australian culture and heritage with you. Stay tuned for Part 4, the final part of the Savannah Way road trip!


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