To be truly honest with you guys I was a liiiitle disappointed about Karijini, as this was THE park I was so looking forward to! Ok, blame Pinterest I acknowledge that but with our camper van we’re pretty much limited to the walking trails that start right on the camping grounds. These include Circular Pool, Dale’s Gorge & the Fortescue Falls and Fern Pool, accessible from Dales Campground & Joffre falls from Karijini Eco Retreat.
However the absolute most beautiful gorges are either only accessible with a 4WD (= 4 wheel drive, I may sound like I’m a natural with this roadside code language but I had to look at it 2 times too so don’t feel bad about yourself!) or via 50 kilometers of unsealed road. You may think, what’s so bad about a bit of gravel road huh?! Well next to the coloring of our van it also feels like we’re on a giant power plate which will rather end up with us picking up the pieces & rebuilding this massive 3D puzzle than making our van stronger..
Now don’t get me wrong completely, the gorges, falls and pools are very nice & the walking trails are adventurous & fun but I guess my camera was hoping for a bit more “holy biscuit, this is blowing-your-socks-off-material”.
I’m getting a bit worried that it will be like this all over Australia, that all best parts can only be accessed with a 4WD I mean. But in that case, I’ll just believe all existing comments (that will probably say it’s all terrific), good on ya!
Some more practical info about Karijini, there are 2 camping grounds with unpowered sites only: Dales campground & Karijini Eco Retreat;
Dales campground is 10$ per night, per person and only has bush toilets. It is fairly good accessible with all sorts of cars though.
The Eco Retreat is 20$ per night, per person and has flush toilets, a solar shower, drinking water & sort of a camp kitchen and a restaurant where everything smells incredible. This one also offers very cool tents & lodges but at 300$ a night and more they’re rather pricy! For the Eco Retreat you’ll have to drive 3 kms on an unsealed road which is rather terrible if you’re not driving a Jeep or Landcruiser with massive wheels.
Wear your hiking shoes and believe the brochures! Mostly they say the kilometers + the hours needed, at first sight these may not be coherent to you, e.g. 800 meters-3 hours return: whoooot 3 hours?! Yup they didn’t mention the 800 meters was steep down, climbing over rocks and/or crossing a river right? 🙂 The timeframes are usually accurate so don’t overestimate yourself too much. Check out the walking trails classes as well, most of the trails we did were class 4, quite challenging but definitely feasible. Now our last walk was a class 5 (it ain’t getting higher than that) and that was something else, rock climbing is a more correct term I believe! A mommy’s nightmare..
On a side note: if there’s one thing you will have to get used to in Australia is that every one of your precious shoes, socks, trousers & most of your other stuff as well will be covered in red dust. EVERYTHING. You don’t see one non-ombre-red colored car unless it’s a national hype of course.. (in that case: OMG ombre’s are soooo 2015!)