Cher Lombok from APT talks about the epic landscapes and cultural gems of The Kimberley
What makes the Kimberley such an appealing touring destination?
Many people think they’ve seen the Australian outback after a trip to the Red Centre, but the Kimberley is Australia’s final frontier. It’s relatively untouched, has a fascinating history and culture, and epic landscapes. From natural phenomena like Horizontal Falls to places like Bell Gorge, you’re witnessing nature at its finest.
How long has APT been selling the Kimberley for?
More than 40 years. We’ve just released our first ever dedicated Kimberley brochure to the UK market too.
How do people travel around the Kimberley on an APT tour?
Guests can explore by land, sea, or both. On our small ship coastal cruises, they’ll have the comfort of a high-end hotel, while stepping off into our smaller Zodiacs for daily excursions. On land, guests will stay in our Luxury Wilderness Lodges, which have been created with the local environment and community in mind. We travel around in our 4x4 vehicles that offer comfort while being able to cope with some of the world’s toughest terrain.
How many people are on a typical tour?
Our cruises have a maximum of 110 guests. On land, our tours take a maximum of 22 passengers.
How many tours to the Kimberley does APT offer?
We offer four tours and one cruise, plus guests can lengthen their stay by adding extensions to destinations such as Broome, Cape Leveque and El Questro.
What’s your most popular itinerary?
The 15-Day Kimberley Complete. Guests can enjoy three APT Signature Experiences and it’s the perfect way to stay in all three of our Luxury Wilderness Lodges, while covering some of the region’s most iconic sights.
Have there been any recent additions?
Yes, for 2020 we have added a new eight-day tour, which takes guests from Broome to Kununurra and includes two Signature Experiences – seeing the impressive sights of El Questro and soaking up the thermal Zebedee Springs.
What sort of client is the Kimberley suited to?
Customers looking for an adventure and those wanting to experience nature with the comfort of luxury.
What are some of the standout experiences that APT offers?
Our APT Signature Experiences include moments such as sunset drinks in the Bungle Bungle, the chance to swim at the Zebedee Springs and a helicopter flight over Mitchell Falls.
When should clients visit?
In the Kimberley, you can sometimes experience more than one season in a day! But the best time of year to visit is May to September.
What will surprise clients about the region?
The vast landscape – the Kimberley is three times the size of England. Plus, the enthralling history and indigenous culture in the area often surprises our guests. Some of the most intriguing knowledge they will gain is via our driver-guides and their experiences, particularly the details on European history in the region and how their settlement influenced the development of the Kimberley.
What’s your top tip for clients?
To savour the sunsets with a drink in hand. After a busy day, sit back and watch the colour of the sky turn the same shade as the earth. Then, when the sun has set, look up and see the clear sky and all the stars.
And for agents selling it?
Showcase the imagery and videos from APT – the destination really can sell itself. And if customers need convincing, remind them that this is one of the few remaining remote regions in the world. It’s so untouched that many Australians don’t even know about it. If your customer has covered Australia before, this is a great destination for them to return to for a completely different experience.