Australia Solar Eclipse Travel Archives - TravelQuest International
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Australia Solar Eclipse Travel

Whenever travel to Australia is discussed, iconic images immediately spring to mind: the Great Barrier Reef, the Sydney Opera House and Sydney Harbour Bridge, Bondi Beach, the Blue Mountains, the Daintree Rainforest, the Outback, Uluru (Ayers Rock), and of course, kangaroos and koalas. With the exception of Uluru and the Outback, all of these locations and sights are easily assessable to tourists who flock to Australia’s eastern seaboard. It’s no wonder that these locations are often crowded with tourists, as they are the focus of many Australia vacations.

However, veteran travelers look for experiences and sights that are off the beaten path. Western Australia is one such location. As Australia’s largest state, it encompasses the western third of the country. It’s an incredibly diverse region that ranges from the arid Outback, to aboriginal rock art in the ancient Kimberley region, and unbelievably clear ocean waters. The best part? It’s easy to get to, and yet it’s overlooked by tourists.

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Solar Eclipse Trip to Australia

If you’re thinking of a trip Down Under in the near future, there’s no better time to go than April 2023, when a solar eclipse is set to occur. There won’t be another total eclipse of the Sun anywhere in Australia until 2028, so 2023 is a great opportunity to combine a visit to this enchanting land with a view of an incredible celestial sight.

The solar eclipse begins over the Indian Ocean at sunrise on April 20, 2023. The path of totality sweeps across the sea for almost an hour before ever so briefly grazing the Australian continent. For a magical 49 seconds, the Sun is completely hidden for eclipse chasers on Western Australia’s North West Cape. Weather prospects here are very good; sunshine dominates the April skies over the region. According to Jay Anderson, TravelQuest’s eclipse meteorologist: “Exmouth and the surrounding area enjoy the very best of Australian sunshine, and for those interested in the stars as well, the very best of nights.”

A double-diamond ring at the beginning or end of totality is a spectacular sight. Photo by Rami Daud/NASA
The location of the Sal Salis eco-camp on Western Australia’s North West Cape. TravelQuest

Luxury in an Ancient land

It will be a magical minute in this tiny corner of Australia, when the Moon hides the Sun in April 2023. But this total solar eclipse is just the pièce de resistance of the remarkable time you’ll spend in the Land Down Under. Our “Western Australia Total Solar Eclipse at Sal Salis Camp” is a 5-day outback experience at a luxury eco-retreat, with the eclipse visible from the shore of the Indian Ocean. Join us as we discover a region that is one of Australia’s best kept secrets.

Our luxury, safari-style eco-retreat is situated on the country’s North West Cape, set among wind-sculpted dunes at the edge of the Indian Ocean. Here you’ll enjoy fabulous views of the coastal wilderness and the ocean beyond. You’ll also appreciate the quiet of the encampment, as the tents do not have TV, telephone, WiFi, or even an air conditioning—the sea breezes take care of that. The tents are spacious and comfortable (including an eco-conscious, en-suite bathroom), all meals are prepared from fresh local ingredients, and a generous self-serve bar is included. As a bonus, come eclipse day you don’t have to move; totality is visible from the beach or your tent!

Every day at Sal Salis, you can choose from a variety of activities designed to showcase the region’s unspoiled natural environment. Perhaps you’ll participate in sea kayaking, or drift snorkel to view the magnificent Ningaloo Reef located just a few meters offshore. Your stay also includes (conditions permitting) an opportunity to swim with majestic whale sharks—the world’s largest fish but reassuringly easygoing. Behind our beach-side encampment is the Cape Range National Park. Here rugged limestone ranges, creeks, bays, and deep canyons are plentiful, with walking trails throughout. Kangaroos, wallabies, and emus are often encountered on visits to the Cape Range, which is also a sanctuary for numerous birds and unusual fauna. You can embark on a guided walk through Mandu Mandu Gorge, where you’ll enjoy wildlife and bird spotting. This is the Outback that visitors to the east coast of Australia never see.

Perched on platforms over the dunes, each luxury wilderness tent offers uninterrupted coastal views. Photo by Jarrad Seng
Conditions permitting, travelers will have an opportunity to swim with majestic whale sharks, the world’s largest fish. Photo by Sal Salis Ningaloo Reef
The splendor of the starry southern sky is on full display from our Outback ocean-side camp. Photo by Sal Salis Ningaloo Reef

Stargazing in the Outback

After a day of exploration followed by an elegantly prepared dinner using fresh local ingredients, there’s no better conclusion to the evening than a session of stargazing. Australia’s Outback is dark, thanks to its sparse population and spread-out communities. In our seaside camp, with a TravelQuest astronomer present, you’ll enjoy a stargazing tour of the amazing southern night sky. After sunset in April, the Southern Cross emerges from the twilight. Nearby are the Large and Small Clouds of Magellan, our Milky Way’s neighboring companion galaxies. Orion, upside down for Northern Hemisphere visitors, sinks into the western horizon while Omega Centauri, the largest of the globular clusters, is overhead and easily visible to the eye. Later in the evening, the constellations of Scorpius and Sagittarius rise, bringing the Milky Way’s starry and dust-strewn core into view—its web of dark lanes forming patterns that are important in Aboriginal lore. As for the ultimate celestial event—totality—you don’t have to move.

Sal Salis Ningaloo Reef camp is set among wind-sculpted dunes at the edge of the Indian Ocean. Photo by Sal Salis Ningaloo Reef

Join Us for Totality In Australia

Western Australia Total Solar Eclipse at Sal Salis Camp” is TravelQuest’s luxury, safari-style eclipse tour. The camp is situated on Australia’s North West Cape in Western Australia. You’ll arrive at Learmonth Airport on the Cape on April 17, 2023, and depart April 21st, the day after the solar eclipse. Because most of totality passes over the ocean or remote islands, this spectacle will be seen by very few eclipse chasers. Our amazing solar eclipse trip to Western Australia will have us well placed to catch this cosmic spectacle. On eclipse day, totality sweeps directly over our campsite and is visible from your tent or the beach. So why not join us and combine a relaxing Australia vacation with the wonders of the southern night sky and a total solar eclipse? If this trip appeals, please visit TravelQuest’s eclipse tour webpage or contact us directly.

Header image by Ben Carless