11 Days “The Kimberley, Australia’s Hidden Treasure”
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- Witness the spectacular tidal change at Montgomery Reef.
- Discover the Kimberley’s ancient and mysterious rock art.
- Look for the White-bellied Sea Eagle, Osprey, Brahminy Kite and Peregrine Falcon.
- View King George’s towering twin falls plunging over 260 feet (80 m).
- Experience the sheer vastness and power of the Mitchell Falls from a helicopter.
- Admire the glorious beehive panoramas of the Bungle Bungle Range from the air.
- Enjoy numerous nature walks and Zodiac tours, which reveal stunning scenery, pristine beaches, and awe-inspiring landscapes throughout your Kimberley Expedition.
Day 1 — Darwin, Northern Territory, Australia
Embark Silver Discoverer for this stunning Silversea Expedition — The Kimberley, Australia’s Hidden Treasure. This afternoon, you will be introduced to your Expedition Team and attend a Zodiac briefing, and tonight we invite you to familiarise yourself with your new home away from home, meet some of your fellow travellers and enjoy the first of many memorable meals in The Restaurant..
Day 2 – Cruising the Arafura Sea
A leisurely day at sea permits you to unwind after your travels to join the ship and to take advantage of the luxurious amenities aboard Silver Discoverer. Attend a lecture to prepare you for the fascinating Dreamtime mythology of the Aborigines or just relax in the comfort of your suite and watch a movie on the in-suite interactive television.
Day 3 — Jaco Island, Timor Leste
Timor is the easternmost of the Lesser Sunda Islands, and while the western part belongs to Indonesia, the eastern part gained independence in 2002 as Timor Leste.
Our goal today is to enjoy Jaco Island off the eastern tip of Timor. No spices were grown here and nobody lives on the island, as it is not only part of the Nino Konis Santana National Park, but also considered sacred by the Timorese.
Silver Discoverer will anchor off its shore and we will enjoy the island, its forest, its beaches and its reef to have water activities offered. If conditions permit, a beach BBQ will be offered.
Day 4 − Cruising the Arafura Sea
This leisurely day at sea will give you a chance to attend more lectures about the natural history, wildlife and human history of the area. All members of the Expedition Team are experts in their fields and will love to entertain you with stories and information that will make your voyage all the more interesting and fulfilling.
Days 5-10 — The Kimberley, Western Australia
The Kimberley is famous for having the second largest tidal range in the world after the Bay of Fundy. A flexible itinerary allows us to take advantage of this natural phenomenon. In the true spirit of expedition cruising, each day the Expedition Leader and Captain will determine our best course depending on tide, weather and sea conditions. Here are some of the places we intend to visit during our time in this wondrous region.
DAY 5 — Wyndham (Bungle Bungle) The Kimberley, Western Australia
Wyndham is our gateway to the breathtaking Bungle Bungle mountain range in Purnululu National Park, a World Heritage Site — and with good reason. For more than 350 million years, nature has shaped geological formations of giant orange and black striped domes rising out of the ground, a landscape unlike anything you have ever seen. Known to the local aborigines for thousands of years, the Bungle Bungles were only discovered by the outside world in the mid-1980s. Today take part in an inclusive overflight for an aerial view of these glorious panoramas, as well as seeing the majestic man-made Lake Argyle and Argyle Diamond Mine area from the air.
Day 6 – Koolama Bay for King George Falls, The Kimberley, Western Australia
The King George Falls is one of the Kimberley’s most magnificent natural wonders. At 260 feet (80 m), the twin cascades are among the highest in Australia. We drop anchor at the mouth of the river and ride Zodiacs up this waterway, weaving through an amazing landscape of near vertical red rock formations and a parade of wildlife — carnivorous saltwater crocodiles and amazing birdlife, including giant raptors and the Brahminy Kite. Arriving at the falls, we can cruise quite close to the base to contemplate the immensity of this thundering spectacle — a truly humbling experience.
Day 7 – Swift Bay, The Kimberley, Western Australia
Swift Bay will permit us to have a look at some of the spectacular Aboriginal rock art sites. After a short transfer ashore, we will walk up to the rock art galleries that show Wandjina and Bradshaw style paintings.
Huge middens of clam shells and other marine mollusks indicate that these sites have been in use for thousands of years, but apart from the art galleries there is also birdlife to be encountered.
Day 8 – Naturaliste Island and Hunter River, The Kimberley, Western Australia
Silver Discoverer will anchor close to Naturalist Island from where we will offer Zodiac cruises. The Hunter River is home to an immense mangrove system. Be sure to look for the image of the Indian Head in the soaring red sandstone cliffs as we set out in Zodiacs to explore the narrow mangrove channels, watching for numerous bird species and keeping an eye out for the Crocodylus porosous (saltwater crocodile), the most aggressive crocodile known to man.
For those wishing to explore some of the Kimberley’s vast interior your on-board Silversea Expeditions team can arrange an optional helicopter flightseeing excursion to the famous Mitchell Falls where four tiers of waterfalls plunge into deep pools that flow out into the Mitchell River.
Another option is to go fishing by helicopter where few others can go.
Day 9 – Talbot Bay (Horizontal Falls), Buccaneer Archipelago, The Kimberley, Western Australia
The British naturalist David Attenborough described Horizontal Falls as “one of the greatest natural wonders of the world“. This group of over 800 islands was created millions of years ago by the erosive tidal changes. The region’s tides of close to 36 feet (or nearly 11m) create an amazing spectacle. Depending on whether the tides are ebbing or flowing, we board our Zodiacs for an exhilarating ride through the falls. Then continue deeper into the sandstone gorge of Cyclone Creek and explore geological formations that were created over the last two billion years.
Day 10 – Montgomery Reef, The Kimberley, Western Australia
During the very early morning Silver Discoverer will be close to Montgomery Reef. At Montgomery Reef, which is over 400 square miles (1035 km2) in size, we can observe the amazing tidal changes that take place here. Timing of the tides is everything today and that is why we visit Montgomery Reef during the afternoon: low tide reveals up to 13 feet (4 m) of reef exposing a river that allows access to this amazing semi-submerged world. As the tide continues to ebb, we use our Zodiacs to make our way to the edge of the reef where we are surrounded by cascading waterfalls up to 10 feet high (3 m), and continue up the river as we look at the abundance of reef birds and every imaginable sea creature including turtles, manta rays and, if we are lucky, the elusive dugong.
A visit to Montgomery Reef is truly a once in a lifetime experience.
During the afternoon our onboard Videographer/Photographer will present the Voyage-DVD, letting you re-live the many moments of outstanding nature experiences had during this voyage through “Australia’s Hidden Treasure”.
Day 11 – Broome, Western Australia
Following breakfast, disembark Silver Discoverer.
Expedition highlights and wildlife listed here are possible experiences only and cannot be guaranteed. Your Expedition Leader and Captain will work together to ensure opportunities for adventure and exploration are the best possible, taking into account the prevailing weather and wildlife activity. Expedition Team members scheduled for this voyage are subject to change or cancellation.