“As we followed stream beds lined with seemingly immortal river red gums and climbed broken hills on the way to the Elder Range, my sense of time slowed from the frantic speed of the Internet to the pace of an unhurried walk”
Travel + Leisure
Planning your Wild Bush Luxury experience on the Arkaba Walk made easy with responses to some common questions here.
We’d love to help if you don’t find what you need.
On the Arkaba Walk you’ll enjoy three full-days of guided walking with approximately 12 to 15 kilometres (or six to seven hours) each day.
4-night itinerary inclusions
Moderate with some challenging sections.
The Arkaba Walk is graded as moderate, covering between 12 and 15kms per day for three walking days.
It’s not a race to the finish, rather an experience that encourages you to take your time, soak in the outback and listen to stories passionately shared by our field guides.
There are two sections that some will find more challenging: A steep descent from the lip of Wilpena Pound at the end of Day 1, and a steep ascent to the summit of the Red Range at the end of Day 2. The reward more than makes up for these short, sharp sections with incredible photo opportunities.
One of the best aspects of our Arkaba Walks is that the style is exploratory, you don’t follow a fixed trail and we have the flexibility to change up the route according to the fitness levels and interests of your collective group.
‘One man’s stroll is another man’s expedition.’
You’ll be crossing some of the most ancient landscapes in the world. Each day, new vistas showcase sandstone bluffs, dry creek beds dotted with River Red Gums or rocky gorges hiding timid wildlife.
The route follows some thick vegetation, up hillsides and rocky surfaces. You can be walking up to 7 hours per day over hilly terrain with plenty of ascents and descents and across uneven ground.
Whilst you do not need previous trekking experience, a good level of fitness is required.
We always recommend to get as fit as possible to maximise your enjoyment of the walk. As you are in the Flinders Ranges, there are hills to climb and descend. If you have a reasonable level of fitness and spend some time exercising most days, you are in a great position to really enjoy the experience.
It’s helpful for our guides to be aware of any pre-existing medical conditions or previous walking experience that may affect your ability to walk 12 to 14km each day.
The best preparation for a walking holiday is to walk. It is a good idea to start conditioning a couple of months before your walking holiday, depending on your existing fitness level. A combination of short and long walks as well as hill climbs and stairs will help to prepare you to walk over varied terrain. You should be physically active for at least 1-2 hours three times per week.
Enjoy some day hikes at your local national park as this can help you get used to walking on uneven surfaces and break in your walking boots. It is essential that the boots you wear on any walking holiday are well broken in. You will carry a daypack (provided by us!) during your Arkaba Walk filled with only the items you will need access to during the day – water, camera, snacks, lunch, binoculars etc. Walking with a day pack weighing between 4-5 kg will also assist with your preparation.
Only a day pack with your packed lunch and water for the day.
We will provide you with a soft carry bag to put your overnight gear into and this will be transported for you between camps. You may store your other luggage (such as suitcases) back at our Homestead.
The Arkaba Walk operates to a minimum of four and maximum of ten guests.
Sleeping accommodation is based on twin share (single beds) and single travellers may be required to share accommodation with another single walker of the same gender.
For guests who prefer not to share a room, the single occupancy rate applies.
Your guide will carry:
*Due to COVID health guidelines we are no longer able to provide you with a water bottle, so please do bring your own. Each day our guides carry at least 10L of additional water and encourage you to keep hydrated. A container with 1L minimum is recommended.
It is essential that you have footwear that are broken in and have ankle support, as the creeks beds in particular can be unsteady underfoot.
If you don’t have time to break in a new pair of hiking boots, and feel confident in your existing walking shoes, then comfortable trainers would be suitable.
For a full list of trip essentials and packing advice click here.
While not necessary, we do provide walking poles for your use. They’re lightweight, easily adjustable and ideal for taking weight off your knees as you descend off the lip of Wilpena Pound, the jewel in the crown of the Flinders Ranges.
You are welcome to use your own but we do provide you with a 30L day pack with ridged lumbar support, which includes a hydration bladder holding up to two litres of water.
If you have a preferred water bottle instead of the bladder provided, you are most welcome to bring this with you.
The Arkaba Walk operates between March and October with each month offering different flavours, as South Australia is a very seasonal destination. The wildlife is incredible all year round, as is the ever inspiring natural environment. The best time to walk will depend when you can get away and your preferred walking weather.
March to May provides warm days, and moderate nights. The earth can still be quite dry.
June to August usually sees the earth start to green up with a bit of rain. The days are perfect for walking and the nights are cold. We have all sorts of Wild Bush Luxury tricks to keep our walkers nice and warm at night but we do recommend to pack your woollies.
During September and October the rain dependent wildflowers are out and new animals are born. Nights are still quite moderate, though the days will begin to heat up significantly towards the end of September into October.
View our Nature Calendar for more details.
The walk takes place in all conditions, excluding extreme weather.
With the right clothing, there is no bad weather and we recommend walkers keep an eye on the Bureau of Meteorology weather forecast leading up to the walk.
It is useful to pack a light waterproof jacket in most cases.
All sleeping and meal areas at the swag camps are undercover and protected from any rainfall.
The arrival of the wildflowers is very dependent on rainfall, however we have found in previous years that late August to September seems the time most likely to see the delicate, vibrant petals popping out from the ancient earth.
Green and red rough-leaved grevillea, the bright purple vanilla lily and soft silver mulla mulla welcome spring to the Flinders and our guides know just the places to find them!
There are instances where new departure dates can be added, usually only for an exclusive group and this is subject to availability.
Please enquire with our reservations consultants who would be happy to look into opening up new dedicated departure dates for your group.
Unfortunately the Arkaba Walk cannot be split into parts.
If you enjoy walking but just not too much, we recommend booking a stay at the Arkaba Homestead instead. Your all-inclusive stay can include smaller walks across the property.
Subject to availability, it is possible to spend an additional night at Arkaba Homestead following the walk. This is a great way to linger a little longer in the Flinders Ranges and experience the different flavour of the Homestead experience.
Also note that our 5-night itinerary already includes an extra night at the end.
The boundary of Arkaba’s vast 60,000 acre property are the walls of Wilpena Pound.
On Day 1 of the walk, not only will you see it, you will walk into, across and over it.
There’s no better way to see how much ground you covered than with a scenic flight over Wilpena Pound.
For walkers booked with transfers, the only available time to book a scenic flight is on the afternoon of Day 4, after completing the walk around 3pm.
For self-drive walkers, we suggest a scenic flight following your check-out from Arkaba, to maximise your last morning at the Homestead.
Sleeping out under the stars at our two Signature Swag Camps will be one of the highlights of your trip.
One of five timber swag decks will be your room for the night. Each are slightly elevated with a half metre corrugated iron screen around three sides to give privacy, the fourth side is left open to the views over the countryside, while above you is the night sky and a canopy of stars.
Your bed itself is a ‘swag’ – the bedding of choice for generations of Australian pioneers, a canvas envelope that is comfortable and waterproof, protecting you from the elements. Inside each swag will be an all seasons sleeping bag with liner.
Each deck has a sheltered area where your swag beds will be placed in the event of wind or rain.
Back at the Arkaba Homestead you will be in one of five ensuite Guestrooms
No. There are shared facilities at the camps.
In tune with our sustainability principles, each camp has two waterless composting toilets that require no use of chemicals and have no polluting discharge.
You will enjoy ‘bush showers’ – essentially buckets that our camp assistants will fill by hand with water warmed over the fire and equipped with taps to regulate the flow. Strategically located to enjoy the best of the views, whilst remaining discreet, these showers will be a feature of your trip.
Shampoo, conditioner, hand and body soap are provided at each campsite as well as the Arkaba Homestead.
With conservation at the heart of everything we do, products are carefully selected and are Australian made, biodegradable and designed to genuinely minimise our environmental footprint.
No. We recommend bringing a portable battery pack to recharge your device during the walk, particularly if you plan on taking plenty of photos!
One you are back at the Homestead you will have electricity to recharge your devices.
Yes with enough notice we can accommodate most dietary requirements.
As we are a remote location we don’t have access to purchase last minute ingredients. Please give your dietary requirements to our reservations team at time of booking.
Arkaba has adopted a ‘buy local’ principle and our head chef uses the very best of South Australia’s produce to craft the food program with a few native elements to add a unique intrigue and interest.
Our meals are a communal affair, shared at a large table with other guests and often hosted by one of our guides. Throughout your stay, you will dine at a few different locations – sometimes indoors, sometimes outdoors.
Along the walk you’ll enjoy cooked breakfasts, a picnic lunch and a three-course dinner.
No – lunch is not provided on arrival or departure days.
Check-in is at 2pm. (We recommend arriving in time for an afternoon safari experience that departs around 3.30pm). Check-out before 11am.
We have sourced a selection of South Australia red, white and sparkling wines as well as local beers and spirits.
We have an open bar policy meaning that you can help yourself to a drink at any time of day that you please. At dinner, our chef will pair wines to match the meals.
Yes absolutely. We recommend a twin-engine. In the case of bad weather, occasionally the single engines get cancelled.
You’ll need to provide clothed body-weights at time of booking.
Luggage allowance is typically 12 kgs in soft bags.
Visit our Getting to Arkaba page for more details.
Check-in is from 2pm. We recommend arriving by about 3.30 so you can join our afternoon safari experience.
Check-out is by 11am following a morning safari experience.
Please note: As a small property with just five guestrooms we have no ‘check-in’ desk. As such, we are unable to accommodate earlier arrivals without prior arrangement. No lunch is provided on day of arrival.
We understand now more than ever that, sometimes, plans change. So we give you peace of mind with our Covid Assurance Policy.
Deposit – A 20% deposit within 7 days
Balance due: 45 days from departure date
Booking within 45 days from departure: Balance due within 48 hours
As a small regional property, our business depends on maximising occupancy and cancellations often result in empty rooms due to long booking lead times. Therefore, cancellations must be advised by email to firstname.lastname@example.org, and the following penalties will take effect from the date received.
46 days or more: 20% deposit will be refunded less a $50 admin fee and any credit card charges
45 days or less: Any rooms cancelled will incur 100% cancellation fee.
• No shows or premature departures will incur 100% cancellation fee as will any unused services or unused nights due to flight / weather disruption.
• Final rooming list, arrival and departure details, meal and tour requirements are due 30 days prior to arrival
The Arkaba Walk welcomes children from 12 years old
• For families with children under 12 years old, a dedicated ‘family friendly’ departure
may be operated. Subject to availability.
• Please note that there are no modifications made to the price, itinerary or food for
• All accommodation is twin share.