Waterfall Cruise Packages 2 & 4: Broome to Darwin with Kimberley Discovery Cruises
March 31st to April 15th and April 30th to May 15th, 2013
Discover the incredible beauty of the Kimberley, as Discovery One makes her way from the township of Derby to explore the astounding Kimberley coast. You will experience 14 days and 13 nights of wonder as we take you on a never to be forgotten journey through this pristine and spectacular wilderness. Our cruise includes Kimberley icons such as the Horizontal Falls, Montgomery Reef and Raft Point, with the added bonus of viewing the stunning waterfalls of the region.
Transfers will be from Broome to Derby, via an air-conditioned coach, at the start of the cruise and, at the conclusion of the cruise, you will fly from the Berkeley River to Kununurra by seaplane* and then board a commercial flight to Darwin the following day. Accommodation, meals and tours will be provided before and after your cruise.
Day 1: Arriving in Broome, you will need to find your own way to your accommodation (10 minutes by taxi) where you will check in. That evening, you will join other guests for dinner at a lovely local restaurant. The receptionist at your hotel will organise transport for you. The hotel will provide you with a breakfast pack for the morning.
Day 2: This morning you will be picked up by an air-conditioned coach from your accommodation and taken to Derby. If time allows, a tour and lunch will provided on the way. Arriving at the jetty in Derby, you will be greeted onboard Discovery One with a welcoming drink by our friendly crew. Settle in, become familiar with your surroundings and relax as we cruise to the top of King Sound and the start of the Buccaneer Archipelago. You are about to begin the journey of a lifetime!
Day 3: This morning we take you to see Silica Beach with its pure white sands and clear blue water. We then travel on to take a close look at Cockatoo Island and its Iron Ore mine. Relax over lunch on the deck while we cruise to Yampi Sound and stop at Crocodile Creek, where you can take a refreshing swim in the stunning fresh water rock pools. Enjoy some sundowners and unwind in your surroundings as we anchor at Myridi Bay for the evening.
Day 4: This morning we take you to Silvergull Creek where you will meet a unique couple who have made their home in this beautiful wilderness. Enjoy a barbeque lunch, take a stroll in the rainforest they have created, or just relax in their spring fed tank with amazing views.
Day 5: Wake up in Talbot Bay, home of the famous Horizontal Falls. The region's massive tides create a spectacular scene, sending huge volumes of water pouring through a narrow chasm in the land formation. We take you on an exciting fast boat ride around the falls before exploring Cyclone Creek, marvelling at the incredible marine life, including the impressive Tawny Nurse sharks, which often come to greet Discovery One. Give them a pat! They’re not interested in eating you!
Day 6: Today we discover the beauty of Langgi beach where you will view the striking rock formations that nature has carved over millions of years. Returning to Discovery One, relax while we cruise to Raft Point, home to some ancient and well preserved aboriginal paintings. We walk to the caves, where you will take in the breathtaking views over Doubtful Bay and Steep Island and learn about the Wandjina people who once inhabited this timeless land. Watch the landscape change as we explore the 400 square km’s of Montgomery Reef! This huge reef becomes exposed as the tides fall, creating a visual spectacle of waterfalls and sea life. This is an exceptional site only few get to see. Lastly, you will cross Doubtful Bay and slowly cruise up Red Cone Creek. If the tide allows, we will take you to the beautiful Ruby Falls.
Day 7: Today we pass the remote settlement of Kuri Bay, home to Australia's largest pearling operation. We take you on a visit to the pristine sands of Hanover Beach. It is here, in 1838, where Lt. George Grey unloaded his Timor ponies and began the first land based expedition of North West Australia, reporting back positively by describing the area as ‘lush and fertile’. This glowing report encouraged a group of optimistic farmers to establish a new settlement here in 1864. The historic landmark ‘Camden Sound’ is our next destination. Here we visit the 19th century ruins of that settlement that lasted less than two years, and appreciate the harsh conditions they endured. We also call in to Sheep Island and visit the graves of these tough pioneers.
Day 8: Enjoy the view as we cruise through St George Basin, where we are welcomed by Mt Trafalgar and Mt Wellington, named by Philip Parker King during his explorations. Next we head down the Prince Regent River. Get your cameras ready as we experience some spectacular scenery on our journey down this remote and pristine waterway. See how many crocodiles you can count as we travel up Camp Creek to witness the waterfalls and striking gorges. Our journey concludes at the majestic King Cascade Falls where American model, Ginger Meadows, was fatally attacked by a crocodile in 1987.
Day 9: This morning we stop at Naturalist Island at the mouth of the Hunter River, where you can enjoy an optional helicopter ride over the Mitchell Plateau and view the stunning Mitchell Falls.** Then we visit Bigge Island, one of the Kimberley's largest islands and home to some amazing rock art galleries. View these important and ancient paintings or relax and take a walk on a sandy beach.
Day 10: Today’s agenda includes Careening Bay, site of an ancient boab tree first visited in 1820 by Phillip Parker King whilst surveying the Australian coastline. We take you on a walk to see the boab tree where King and his crew careened the vessel HMC 'Mermaid' for repairs and decided to carve the vessel's name into the tree. Enjoy the scenery of the Bonaparte Archipelago, a fascinating set of islands offering wonderful diversity.
Day 11: Your destination today is the region of the northern Kimberley Coast, including Vansittart Bay, where we take you exploring various coves on the perimeter. Amongst other places of interest, you will view the ancient Bradshaw or Gwion Gwion paintings. Joseph Bradshaw was the first European to record these amazing paintings in 1891, some of which have been dated at over 17,000 years old, predating the famous Wandjina figures.
Day 12: Today we visit a site where a DC3 aircraft crashed on the beach during WWII after running low on fuel. You can explore the almost intact remains of this aircraft, getting a feel for this important time in Australia’s history. Our Captain has many places of interest to explore with you in this region and will take you to as many places as tides and weather allow.
Day 13: Today we make our way to the King George River for a cruise along this beautiful stretch of water. Heading towards the King George Falls through sandstone cliffs, we end at the base of the twin falls for a close up view of the tallest falls in Western Australia. We anchor tonight at the falls where you can relax and enjoy a drink on the top deck, followed by dinner in an incomparable setting.
Day 14: Cruising down Cambridge Gulf towards the Berkeley River, we enjoy a visit to Koolama Bay, named for the 340ft vessel 'Koolama' that was beached following an attack by the Japanese during WWII. Travelling on, marvel at the stunning red and ochre cliffs bordering the Berkeley River and enjoy the scenery as we cruise through this magical region of waterfalls and freshwater pools.
Day 15: Relax on the top deck and soak up the 360 degree views as you wait for a seaplane to take you on a scenic flight to Kununurra*. Once in Kununurra, you will have a chance to look around the town before checking into your accommodation. Dinner will be provided where we hope you can gather with your fellow travelers for an enjoyable evening reliving wonderful memories of your cruise.
Day 16: After breakfast you will check out of your accommodation and wait outside for a coach to collect you and take you on a short tour of the region (including lunch) before dropping you at Kununurra for your flight to Darwin in the afternoon.
*The transfer by seaplane could be at a destination further west than the Berkeley River, if prevailing weather conditions make it too dangerous or unpleasant to start or finish the cruise in the Berkeley River. This is entirely at the Captain’s discretion, as weather forecasts can’t be obtained more than 3 days in advance. His detailed knowledge and experience of the Kimberley, and our vessel, will ensure that your safety and enjoyment is always first priority. If the itinerary has to be changed, you can be assured that your enjoyment of the cruise will not be diminished.
**The availability and price of a Helicopter ride over the Mitchell Plateau depends on the number of passengers who choose this optional excursion. We do not include it in the price of the cruise and payment is made directly to the helicopter company by cash or credit card.
This itinerary is intended to be read as a guide only. While it is a good estimation of the cruise, the itinerary and/or sequence may change with tides and weather, or at the discretion of the Captain. There is also the possibility that further places of interest may be visited which are not specified in this itinerary.