Outback Art & Culture Experience

Immerse yourself in the beauty of the outback on this unique art and culture adventure. Led by local artist Anna Dakin, you will travel the country slowly, painting and creating along the way. Explore hiking trails in the West Macdonnell Ranges, home to famous Indigenous artist Albert Namatjira, and stop for art classes 'en plein air' where he painted. Experience a   'welcome to country' ceremony by Alice Springs woman Kumalie Riley, and several indigenous guided tours throughout the trip. We will be camping in national parks and unique camp grounds, so your nights will be spent relaxing around a campfire under the incredible outback stars. 

Highlights:

  • Daily outdoor art classes in multiple mediums and styles taught by local artist Anna Dakin.

  • Visit and paint at the sites of famous indigenous artist Albert Namatjira.

  • Experience a "welcome to country" ceremony by Indigenous woman Kumalie Riley.

  • Learn about outback flora on an guided Indigenous bush food and medicine walk.

  • Explore beautiful hiking trails in the Macdonnell ranges and Kings Canyon.

  • Bring the iconic sunrise and sunset at Uluru to life on your canvas during an outdoor art class.

  • Learn about Indigenous art from Anangu women at Uluru.

Trip info:

Dates: Returning in 2023!

Duration: 6 days


Start: Alice Springs
Finish: Alice Springs

Group size: 16

    $1850            

Information

Included: 

  • Daily art classes from Anna Dakin, catering to all experience levels.

  • Art supplies (yours to keep - valued at $200)

  • All meals: 5 breakfasts, 6 lunches, 5 dinners; plus lots of yummy snacks.

  • Camp gear: swag, sleeping bag, tent. 

  • National park passes & campsite fees.

  • Indigenous art interpretation at Uluru.

  • 2 qualified and experienced local guides.

  • Indigenous bush foods and medicine walking tour (Karrke Cultural Tour).

  • "Welcome to country" indigneous ceremony in Alice Springs.

  • Dot painting art experience with Anangu women at Uluru.

  • Visit to Albert Namatjiras house and the places he painted.

Experience Level:

From absolute beginners to experienced artists, anyone can participate fully and enjoy this trip. Art lessons will be taught by Anna so there will be assistance for those who seek a little guidance, or freedom for experienced artists to create in their own style and pace.

Fitness: 

 

This is an active trip involving a hike every day plus general walking around the campsites and destinations. However, we always take hikes at a reasonable pace and have plenty of breaks to catch our breath, we are here to enjoy nature and this experience - not to push ourselves to our physical limits! To make the most out of this trip a reasonable level of fitness is required to enjoy all the hikes, but you may choose to sit out on a particular activity at any time if you feel you want to rest at the camp or a nearby safe spot such as a cafe or information center. 

The hikes: 

Uluru base walk - 10km (or 5km half). Flat easy path. 

Valley of the Winds - 7.4km (loop). Moderate varying/uneven terrain, some steep inclines and stairs. 

Kings Canyon Rim Walk - 6.5km. Moderate varying/unever terrain, some steep inclines and stairs.

Ormiston pound walk - 9km (loop). Moderate hike along natural varying/uneven terrains.

Simpsons Gap - 2.5km (return). Easy path.

Camping Setup:

We will be sleeping in swags for this trip. Swags are a simple “bedroll” which consists of a foam mattress inside a canvas covering bag. They are waterproof to a degree, but if rain is on the forecast we also have tents (2 persons to a tent) which we will put the swags into. We choose to use swags because they are so quick and easy to set up and pack down in the morning, plus theyre super comfy! You will each be given your own swag for the trip so you can leave your sleeping bag and pillow in it rolled up and use the same swag each night. I will provide swags and sleeping bags, but if you want a pillow you should bring a small travel pillow. (I normally just roll up some clothes to use as a pillow to save space in my bags)

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Itinerary:

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Day 1

To begin our journey across the outback we will meet in Alice Springs and be welcomed to country by local Indigenous woman Kumalie Riley. We will then have a short tour around the art galleries of Alice Springs and visit th Many Hands Art Centre. 

Soon after we will venture out into the West Macdonnell ranges begining with an introductory watercolour painting class at the stunning Simpsons Gap. Here we will be met by Rayleen Brown who will show us some local bushfoods to taste.

This afternoon we will relax around the beautiful Ellery Creek Waterhole where you can have a refreshing swim. There will also be free art time here to enjoy as you please.