BEST AUSTRALIAN MULTI-DAY HIKES
Australia boasts of some of the most diverse hiking on the planet. Untamed jungles give way to vast deserts and snowcapped mountains. Leaving civilisation behind you and getting lost (preferably metaphorically and not literally) off the beaten track delivers a picturesque serenity and beauty which will dare you to fall in love with the country all over again. Australian bushwalkers navigate some of the most rugged and tough turf on the planet, but the natural beauty and wildlife makes it one of the most rewarding terrain to go walkabout in.
THORSBORNE TRAIL, QUEENSLAND
The Thorsborne trail on Hinchinbrook Island was one of the first multi-day hikes I ever undertook. We completed the 32 km in 4 days and were blown away by the untouched beauty the island had to offer. With nothing on the island, you have to be almost entirely self-sufficient and only 43 people are allowed on the trail at any one time, so you have to book in advance. Pack light, and tie your food to a tree at night to stop the rats from stealing your grub.
FRASER ISLAND GREAT WALK, QUEENSLAND
Stretching 84 km across Fraser Island, the Great Walk can be attempted in a single go or broken up into shorter walks. I did this in 3 stages of 2 days each. I wish I had the time to complete in one fowl swoop but the pressures of modern life get in the way. Like the Thorsborne Trail, you will need to be self-sufficient for parts of the trail, as it can get pretty remote. Campsite booking and permits are also required.
LARAPINTA TRAIL, NORTHERN TERRITORY
The whole Larapinta Trail stretches for 223 km across the West MacDonnell Range in the Northern Territory. I completed a 9-day segment of it back in September of 2016. The timing was perfect. The temperature was in the mid-twenties, with the desert coming to life and the view from Mount Sonder at dawn was breathtaking. Many tours run expeditions on the Larapinta Trail, ranging from shorter segments to completing the whole 20-day trail. Go between April and September to avoid the heat.
WILDERNESS COAST WALK, NEW SOUTH WALES AND VICTORIA
The 61 km walk can be completed in four or five days and delivers scenery over grasslands, coastal cliffs, lakes, beaches and mountainous climbs. It is not for the faint hearted and requires a permit, but my trek in 2012 was one of the most rewarding I have experienced. I packed a lightweight 2-piece rod to fish the rivers and lakes and met some mates along the way to break up the walking with some kayak fishing.
OVERLAND TRACK, TASMANIA
The only one on this list I haven’t personally attempted, the Overland Track in the Tasmanian Highlands is next on my list of multi-day hikes. The 74 km trail has a number of side routes to explore and can take anywhere from 5 to 8 days to complete. It has to be completed North to South and permits are required. The woods and wildlife look impressive and the routes are well signposted to prevent you from getting lost. It is definitely going into the 2017 plans.
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