Posted by: travelrat | April 25, 2012

Darwin and the Train


Arrival at Alice Springs


At 6.15, we were waiting for the coach to take us on the first of our tours. At 6.30, it still hadn’t arrived, so we rang the office of Darwin Day Tours … and found that, in the process of being taken over by AATKings, they’d lost our details! But, they said our pick-up was to take us to the bus to Kakadu, which hadn’t left yet, and would pick us up on the way out. In the meantime, they found our details in some forgotten corner of cyberspace … and, another problem! We’d booked for the Wildlife and Harbour Cruise the next day … which wasn’t going to happen. We could, however, rebook for the day after that, or take the tour to the Litchfield National Park. We did both!

BUT … we were due to check out of our accommodation at 10 a.m, and move to another hotel. Could we leave our luggage on the coach? In fact, although the coach was only a little one, they hitched a luggage trailer to it, so when all this had been ironed out, we had three really enjoyable trips. So, I can’t be too hard on them, as they appear to have done everything possible to make it right … although we could have done without the hassle and worry.

The Ghan train down to Alice Springs was a most pleasant ride; I’ll be posting more about that later. And, we had a short stop at Katherine, to see the Katherine Gorge … or Nitmiluk, as they prefer to call it these days.

So, we arrived at Alice Springs, and had a a relaxing day before the start of our next tour … which we confirmed as soon as we arrived!

Just a short summary for the moment. I’ll post more detail on these tours, with better photos (and video) when I get home next month.



  1. Hi Keith,
    I’m sorry to hear you had some hiccups when you arrived, it can be very frustrating sometimes when things don’t go right. But I am happy to hear that you didn’t miss out on your tour, and that the people behind the scenes managed to help you in the end. I hope the rest of your trip goes smoothly for you.

    • They did everything possible to resolve the matter, and we didn’t miss out on anything, and I nearly didn’t post about it. But, I didn’t want to give the impression that everything in life runs smoothly.

      If there’s anything to be learnt from this, maybe we should have waited till we arrived in Darwin before booking our tours, as we did in Cairns, especially as so much depended on the weather … the ‘Wet’ had just ended, and some of the tours had just started ….

  2. Is that a floating camel in your photo?!

    • No, that’s the statue of an Afghan cameleer, after whom the Ghan (originally, the ‘Afghan Express’) was named.

      The cameleers were, actually, from a part of the Indian sub-continent now known as Pakistan … but everyone called them Afghans.

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