It's often asked: What's the difference between the popular 3 day Cockatoo Dreaming Red Centre Tour and the 3 day 4WD Goanna Dreaming Red Centre Tour?

Here we look at the key differences between the tours:

  • - Accommodation
  • - Camp facilities and location
  • - Vehicle
  • - Itinerary
  • - Age groups
  • - Price
Fire Pit New Tents4

Both tours are camping with comfort. However, type of camping differs.

On the 3 day Cockatoo Dreaming Red Centre Tour you will sleep in sleeping bags in a swag (a mattress wrapped in canvas material) on the ground around the camp fire or you will have a basic dome tent you can put up yourself. You can hire a sleeping bag for $20.

On the 3 day 4WD Goanna Dreaming Red Centre tour you will stay in large permanently erected tents. These tents are twin-share and have proper beds, and some of them have a double bed with a single bunk above them for triples and children travelling with parents. You will sleep in a sleeping bag on the bed. The sleeping bags are included as part of the tour price.

Permanent tents (Goanna Dreaming):

Swags (Cockatoo Dreaming):


Kings Creek Station Camp3
Camp facilities and location

The campsites are usually in different locations for the two tours, with the Goanna Dreaming having unique, more remote and private locations.

On the Cockatoo there are basic dining facilities but you still have a hot shower and flushing toilet.

3 day 4WD Goanna Dreaming Red Centre tour needs more space for its permanent tents. This also means more space and more developed eating areas with fly screens and proper seating.

At Kings Creek Station the campsite is in a more secluded area, away from other groups, with great views of the George Gill Ranges, and at Uluru we are the only budget camping company to have our own private area.

Permanent campsite at Uluru (Goanna Dreaming):


The 3 day Cockatoo Dreaming Red Centre Tour uses a 24-seat Mini Coach. If full there will be 24 people on the tour plus the guide.

The 3 day 4WD Goanna Dreaming Red Centre tour uses a 16 or 21-seat large 4WD (four wheel drive) vehicle. If full, there will be 16 or 21 people on the tour plus the tour guide.

The leg room and windows are larger on the 4WD vehicle giving better viewing of Australia's outback and all the wonders of the Northern Territory.

4WD vehicle (Goanna Dreaming):

Kings Canyon Rim walk12

The itineraries in terms of the attractions seen and the walks done are basically the same on both tours.

However, the 3 day 4WD Goanna Dreaming Red Centre tour will travel on some dirt roads away from the main sealed roads for a different experience of the region. this gets you off the beaten track and away from the big tourist highways for a while.

Cockatoo Dreaming route map:

Age groups

Due to the price, the age group is usually more in the range of 18-39 on the 3 day Cockatoo Dreaming Red Centre Tour.

The 3 day 4WD Goanna Dreaming Red Centre Tour will usually have a slightly older average age and a wider spread of ages. It's also a better tour to take children under 18 on because of the additional camping comforts and mature level of the travellers, but no children under 8 years please.

To see if you are able to do this trip as a mature traveller and what fitness level is required read our recent article: What fitness level is required for Australia's outback?

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