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What makes the outback the outback?

Home Icon What makes the outback the outback?

When heading on a trip down under, it’s highly likely that a stop in the Australian outback will be top of your to do list. One of the main reasons that people decide to travel to Australia is to see for themselves the diverse landscapes and stunning nature found across this vast continent, including that of the outback. But do you actually know what makes a place part of the incredible Australian outback? Take a look below to find out…

If you want to explore the outback for yourself why not take a look at the escorted tours of Australia we offer.


In Australia the vast majority of the population is concentrated in cities and commuter towns along the southern and eastern coasts, and around Perth on the west coast. To the urban dweller, the outback is everywhere outside of these populated towns and cities – over 5.3 million square kilometres of land, and is used to refer to the empty, remote areas which you find as you head further inland. Only an estimated 3% of Australian people actually live in Outback, situated in small villages which are dotted across the arid landscape and connected by a few major highways.

If you want to discover the ‘Capital of the Outback’ then you need to visit Alice Springs, a town located almost in the very centre of Australia. Surrounding the town is what’s known as the ‘Red Centre’, a very arid environment with multiple deserts and home to the iconic Uluru (Ayers Rock), a must-see for any visitor wanting to explore the outback and immerse themselves in the aboriginal culture of Australia.


australian outback sandstone waves


As expected the Outback is certainly a hot spot with the Australian desert regions reaching to around 50°C. In fact, there are 10 different deserts in the Outback with the largest being the Great Victoria Desert which covers a staggering 4.5% of Australia’s land mass. The outback isn’t all desert, it has several climatic zones, with temperate areas in the south, tropical monsoon regions in the north and sometimes even has periods of intense rainfall. This naturally creates beautiful and varied landscapes in every direction, we’d highly recommend seeing Australia’s outback from the air to make sure you see all that’s on offer.


west macdonnell australian outback


Australia has become inherently known for its fascinating animals and sometimes deadly creatures which roam the land, and this is definitely the case in the outback. Across the Australian desert landscape you might be lucky enough to spot a red kangaroo or camels which adapt perfectly to the dry environment. You’ll want to watch your step as there are plenty of reptiles which also make the outback their home too, including the two-metre long perentie lizard, the bearded dragon and the incredibly adaptable thorny devil.

It’s easy to see why a visit to Australia wouldn’t be complete without spending some time exploring the great outback. With such dramatic landscapes, spectacular wildlife and rich aboriginal culture, there really is nowhere quite like it on earth. Make sure you fit in a tour visiting the outback on your next trip down under, it will be sure to give you a truly Australian experience.

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