ADVENTURE UPDATE - Bumper Christmas Issue

15 December 2022

Happy quokka


Here in sunny Scarborough we’re all set for Santa! Bathing suits & red hats are ready, sunscreen’s out, house is decorated & the gypsies are ready to celebrate! Ho ho ho! We’d like to wish all of you the very best for Christmas & the New Year & spread a little seasonal cheer by sharing our recent adventures with you! Read on for the sleigh ride of your life!


Our first Outback Stations Safari was so much fun we decided to do a re-run! In September 2022, our happy band of gypsies met up in Kalbarri & took off with six caravans/4WD’s to explore some of WA’s best outback stations in the State’s Midwest during wildflower season,

Our first stop was Murchison House Station – an awesome stretch of wilderness not far from rugged Kalbarri National Park. We went 4WD’ing on the 350,000 acre property which extends right to the rivermouth, chatted with owners Belinda & Calum Carruth, swam & fished in the Murchison River & checked out the flora, fauna, Skywalk & spekkie scenery at the national park.

From there we headed to Melangata Station near (well kinda near!) Yalgoo, owned & run by Jo Clews & Ken Darnell. Jo, who worked for several years with Global Gypsies as our Catering Hostess & who’s known as WA’s “Camp Oven Queen”, treated us to a special cooking demo and ‘tastings’ round the campfire (yummy!) as well as a tour of the homestead. Ken gave us a private self-drive 4WD tour of their 111,000 acre property & showed us some incredible ‘secret spots’ – we felt very privileged!

We drove out to little-known Dalgaranga Crater, Australia’s smallest impact meteorite crater, & visited an abandoned homestead. We also ran into John Elliott, WA’s own “Camel Man”, who was just completing a three-year cross-country trek with six humpy friends & a dog. He’s quite a character with lots of stories to tell & a very colourful past!

Our last stop was Mellenbye Station - our first time there & a really unique & somewhat eccentric destination. Think cattle, wide open spaces & a big dusty campground, then combine that mental picture with classy sculptures, a merry-go-round, mini-planetarium, function centre with chandeliers, electric bucking bull & new four-star cabins miles from anywhere! As Alice in Wonderland said, “curiouser & curiouser”!

Thanks to the lovely bunch of gypsies who joined us on this unusual adventure – Eric & Maureen Cumming, Veronica Hegarty, Cath Kerr & Mickey Paratene, Lee & Katrina Manchester, Bill & Marion (Mas) O’Neil & Yeeda Topham - we loved having you all along!

Thanks also to Rod from Frontier Campers who provided a Cub Camper Trailer for us. We loved it & would highly recommend it to any outback traveller! It was spacious, comfy, had heaps of storage & most importantly, it was easy to put up & take down! 10 out of 10! Cheers, Rod!

Image00000025 1
IMG 8856
IMG 8833
IMG 8877
IMG 8974
IMG 9050
IMG 9124
IMG 9232
IMG 9029
IMG 9146
IMG 9195
IMG 9150


After three disappointing years of COVID-cancelled tours, we are delighted to be once again planning for the Canning! To play catch-up & try not to disappoint the dozens of Canning tragics on our waitlist, we’ll be running TWO south-to-north Canning trips next year (assuming, of course, that permits are available.)

The first will take place from June 6 – 28, 2023 & will be led by Global Gypsies Director Jeremy Perks. Because the campground we’ve used previously near Wiluna (Gunbarrel Laager) is now permanently closed, we will be beginning our adventure in Meekatharra. The tour will conclude in Halls Creek 22 days later.

The second CSR expedition will take place from July 25 – August 16, 2023 (same itinerary but different dates). It will be led by experienced four-wheel-driver, outback traveller & industry colleague, Steve Melvin & his wife Alison. Steve is a knowledgeable bushman and avid explorer with a mechanical, electrical, farming & mining background. He holds an Electrical Workers A Grade Licence & has extensive experience in management, leadership, project coordination & health & safety.

Alison is a professional tour guide who runs her own business, Forest Explorers, leading wildflower & nature-based tours in the Collie area. The couple are keen campers, members of the local volunteer bushfire brigade & hold current first aid certificates. They are pictured below on a recent 4WD tour of the Kimberley.

The cost of either CSR tour is $5200 per vehicle (1 – 2 people) & there are only a few places left. If you wanna join us on the mother of all outback adventures, you better make it snappy, Pappy! See the tours page at Global Gypsies for more info.

CS Rconvoy
IMG 7435


We’re planning a corker of a tour from August 21 – September 4, 2023, when we take a small & fortunate group from Kalgoorlie to Alice on the Great Central Road! We haven’t run this tour for ages so are very excited.

We’ll visit all the top spots such as Uluru, Kata Tjuta, West McDonnell Ranges, Palm Valley, Kings Canyon, Glen Helen, Hermannsburg & more. 4WD’s, camper-trailers & robust off-road caravans are welcome.

It will be self-catering & will cost $4400 per vehicle including permits, park fees, Welcome/Farewell Dinners, professional tour guide/qualified mechanic, Pre-Departure Workshop & Kit and a guaranteed fabulous time with Jeremy & Jan. So get centred & book your place today! See the tours page for more info.

Uluru 2022


Oh oh! It’s almost Christmas & you forgot to buy Tom, Dick or Harriet a present! Don’t despair! The Gypsies are there! Grab a Gift Voucher from us for a PRIVATE half-day training course in caravan/camper trailer Towing & Reversing; Four-Wheel-Driving or Basic Mechanics. They’re valid for 12 months & cost $399 (for 1 or 2 people). (Note that the price of all private training courses will increase in 2023). Or how about a voucher for our towing training film “Caravanning with Confidence” on USB stick (just $29.95 inc postage)? Or for our popular training book, How to Be an Award-Winning Tour Guide” ($34.95 inc postage)? E-mail us at [email protected] & we’ll sort out a voucher for you quicker than Santa can fall down your chimney!

Gift Voucher


Speaking of gifts, we have another silly season treat for you! We’ve just purchased a tiny house in the trees in the beautiful Southwest forests near Nannup! We’re going to be renting it out in 2023 & we’d love you to holiday there! ‘Friends of Global Gypsies’ will receive an exclusive discount for stays of three weeknights or more.

Our little piece of paradise is right on the Blackwood River, has one bedroom with king-sized bed & en-suite, cozy kitchen, killer views & is fully equipped. We think it’s just gorgeous & is perfect for a relaxing or romantic stay.

No kids, no pets, no city hassles - just peace, tranquillity, beautiful surroundings, kangas, native birds, alpacas, geese - even a koi fishpond.So if you need a nature fix, please let us know! We’ll give you a password & put you in touch with our on-site booking buddies. Now, take a deep breath, hug a tree & say ‘Ohmmm’…

IMG 98601
IMG 96161
IMG 96041
IMG 96051
IMG 94101


We come across lots of great tips for travellers & love sharing them with you! Here’s how to save yourself some $$$ on air tickets courtesy of our friend, aviation guru Geoff Thomas:

  • Book your fares on a Sunday instead of a Friday & save up to 20%;
  • Book flights 3 months ahead (domestic) & 6 months ahead (inter-national) & save up to 25% compared to booking at the last minute;
  • Choose a midday flight to help reduce chance of cancellations;
  • Start your trip on a Saturday instead of a Monday & save up to 20%.

And here’s another travel tidbit! Readers of Conde Naste Travel Magazine voted the world’s TOP 15 AIRLINES FOR 2022 as follows: Singapore, Turkish, Qatar, Emirates, Etihad, ANA, Cathay Pacific, JAL, Qantas, Virgin Atlantic, Air NZ, KLM, British Airways, Air France & Swiss. A couple of surprises in there but good to know!


We were SO excited when we attended the annual Tourism Council Industry Awards dinner in October. Why? Because we got to dress up! Oh! And because we won Silver in the Tourism Hire & Retail Services category for our training programs! The judges also congratulated us for ‘pivoting’, surviving & thriving during COVID. Our latest certificate is now hanging proudly in our office next to the ones for Adventure Tourism (Gold), Training (Bronze) & Tour Guide of the Year. As you can see from the pic, winners are definitely grinners!

20221105 231451


At last we’re able to return to our beloved Africa! We’ll be running our magical Treasures of Tanzania Safari” again next year from July 15 – 27, 2023, & we’d love to take you with us!

With Marco & his team of brilliant local guides, we’ll be visiting all our favourite spots at peak viewing time for the wildlife migration including such iconic destinations as the Serengeti, Ngorongoro Crater, Oldupai Gorge & more! It will be elllie-fantastic & we ain’t lion! (argghhhhsorry).

For details, put on your pith helmet, don your khaki & go to



* We were given a copy of a really unusual book awhile back by our long-time gypsy friends, Gerhardt & Aileen Strumpher. While on one of their many adventures, they picked up a zany but very clever coffee-table publication that uses tongue-in-cheek humour very effectively to make its points about wildlife conservation & careless drivers who endanger, & sometimes kill, our poor little Aussie critters.

Entitled “Roadkill Recipes – Australian Wildlife on the Verge”, it features such “dining delicacies” as Echidna Shashliks, Possum Pizza, Coastal Koala Stack, Cassowary Rollover, Penguin Pinwheels & Roadkill Meatpie. Sounds gruesome but it sure gets the message across & makes you chuckle! Written by Patricia & Tim Leeuwenburg, this little gem can be purchased online.

* We recently received a lovely letter & a Certificate of Appreciation from the Royal Flying Doctor Service thanking us for our ongoing support. We reckon the RFDS does an amazing job & have called on them for medical or evacuation assistance several times over the past 25 years when we were in the back of beyond.

Did you know they provide emergency care, lifesaving outcomes & health treatment & advice to almost 70,000 people in WA every year? Now that’s impressive!

They rely heavily on donations so (along with Trackcare WA), RFDS is one of our favourite organisations. We raise money for them by imposing fines on our naughty clients for silly crimes & misdemeanours they commit while on tour with us - then we match the amount collected at the end of the trip! It’s a bit of fun & hopefully does some good as well!


Our first time back to the Kimberley in almost 10 years was memorable in so many ways! In July, we led a 16-day, self-drive, self-catered tour through this magical region with 9 vehicles & 16 fabulous gypsies tagging along.

Thanks for being such great company Mark & Katherine Bendotti, Owen & Wendy Bradbrook, Ken & Dianne Desmond, Martin Jones & Mary Barton, Ross McGillivray, Steve & Alison Melvin, Helen & Evan Parker & John Ripp (all from WA) & Serge & Kim Alexander from Victoria.

Our expedition began at the Broome Bird Observatory. We loved camping amongst the resident wildlife & it was a quiet oasis compared to a very busy Broome. From there we drove to the Dampier Peninsula, then joined the famous Gibb River Road to Kununurra stopping at most of the iconic spots before circling back to Broome via Fitzroy Crossing.

Highlights of the trip included a guided tour of Willie Creek Pearl Farm, an awesome cultural tour & seafood BBQ with Terry Hunter near Cape Leveque, swimming & hiking at Bells Gorge & Manning Falls, joy flights over the mind-blowing Kimberley landscape & Mitchell Falls; morning tea at Ellenbrae Station scoffing homemade scones, a 'yee'hah!' rodeo in Kununurra, a ‘photographer’s dream’ sunset cruise at Lake Argyle, the haunting & scenic Bungle Bungles (Purnululu), a stunning Geikie Gorge cruise when we learned about the area’s painful history, a wet tee-shirt walk through Tunnel Creek where we clambered up into freedom-fighter Jandamarra’s cave hideout, the majestic boab trees & the hardy & glorious Kimberley Rose.

We had three birthdays during the tour so there were plenty of opportunities to celebrate, quaff some champers & sample improvised (& occasionally dodgy!) birthday treats.

We had a few vehicle breakdowns, flat tyres & mechanical hiccups, but hey, that’s to be expected on such a long & bumpy outback adventure. And full marks to our talented & ever-helpful gypsy pit crew! Daniel Ricciardo eat your heart out1

For us, lowlights of the tour were the dramatic increase in tourist numbers right round the Kimberley (and yes, we know we added to it), over-graded & over-crowded campgrounds (particularly at El Questro & Windjana), the rise in crime in many NW towns & the environmental damage at several natural attractions, probably caused by too many people loving the places to death or by newbie campers unfamiliar with outback travel etiquette.

On a personal note, we were extremely sorry that gutsy long-term gypsy mate, Anne Gilkes, had to withdraw from the trip at the last minute when she broke her collarbone. Ouch! We missed you, Anne! Thankfully you’re on the mend & we hope you'll be able to join us again soon.

While we had a wonderful time, it’s unlikely that we’ll run another escorted self-drive tour through the Kimberley. There are so many other travellers up there now that folks don’t really need the support of a professional tour guide – it’s quite okay to DIY!!

Instead we’re busy researching a couple of new, more challenging & less visited destinations. Outback tragics, watch this space!

IMG 7260
IMG 7319
IMG 7354
IMG 7335
IMG 7926
IMG 7500
IMG 7596
IMG 7704
IMG 7719
IMG 7620
IMG 7524
IMG 8142
IMG 7739
IMG 7756
IMG 8080
IMG 8048
IMG 7464
IMG 8490
IMG 8406


We were privileged to host a group of 14 ‘Delightful Dutchies’ in November on a marathon self-drive adventure organized by our agent in The Netherlands, JP Ponte of Five Senses Expeditions.

There were seven 4WD camper vehicles hired from Red Sands in the convoy & our group probably covered more kilometres in 29 days than Qantas did!

The itinerary was a loop from Perth to Perth on a challenging “Ocean2Outback Expedition” visiting such top spots as Kalbarri National Park, Steep Point, Dirk Hartog Island (very relevant due to the Dutch connection!), Melangata Station, Great Victoria Desert, the SW Forests & more. Heavy rain stopped us in our tracks (literally!) around Esperance but fortunately we had Plan B!

Highlights included Nambung NP (Pinnacles), DHI, Melangata, ALL the desert travel, star-studded bush camps, Antony Gormley's eerie sculptures at Lake Ballard, Walpole’s Treetop Walk & an amazing whale watching cruise in Dunsborough.

The tour was led by Jeremy with assistance from expert offsider (& honorary gypsy!) Grahame Edgar, (alias ‘Oxycol’) who, when not living in a tent, resides in Greta, NSW.

Thanks to Dutch gypsies Albert Arnoldus & Romy Vaessen, Edwin Ausma & Birgit Sommler, Pim & Mariet Berkhuizen, Pieter & Laurette Pelt, Henk & Tanja Scholten, Hans & Myrna Trumpi & Henk & Marieke van Zandwijk for being such great company! And a huge heel erg bedankt to JP Ponte for making it all happen! Geweldige reis, everyone!

IMG 0012
IMG 0540
IMG 0226
IMG 0335
IMG 0246
IMG 0399
IMG 0352
IMG 0448
IMG 0585
IMG 0333


When we weren’t able to run our scheduled Canning Stock Route tour in early June because of the uncertainty over permits, we organized a 12-day Kennedy Range Expedition instead!

Thanks to the gypsies who switched their bookings over & tagged along, as well as to Jeremy’s trusty sidekick, Terry Brewin! The tour began & ended in Carnarvon & we spent most of our time exploring the remote Kennedys (sorta near Gascoyne Junction) & at Quobba Station on the wild WA coast. This whole area is definitely the road less travelled & while we had some wonderful outback experiences, there were some challenges, too!

We have marvelous memories of nights round the campfire, sparkling skies, superb scenery; fossil-finding; an award-winning crossing of the Gascoyne River; a multi-coloured mookite mine; a massive ‘silly fines’ collection thanks to a scary Sergeant-at-Arms; excellent walks; peaceful bush camps that we had all to ourselves & a fascinating & highly recommended visit to Gwoonwardu Mia Cultural Centre in Carnarvon – thanks Toni Roe & team!

But we also experienced dud batteries; flat tyres; water in a fuel filter; broken fridges, radios & side mirrors; a gas leak; an attempted theft; a cut arm; sore feet; imposed Aqualyte overloads; ongoing spinifex removal sessions; howling coastal winds & OMG - a lost thermal mug!

Thanks to Alan Bates, Kevin Blackford & Mark Margetic, Fay Cechner & Glynne Wright, Ken & Dianne Desmond, Greg & Leanne Howell, David & Anne Jack, Ken McIntosh & Grahame Edgar, Ellen Pitchers, John Stacy & Gerhard & Aileen Strumpher (the “Roadkill” readers & providers of much helpful trip information), for joining us & being such good sports. And a warm greeting to the DBCA rangers we met along the way -kiya’ Veronica, Anthony & Jason!

IMG 0576 2
IMG 0605
IMG 0653
IMG 0640
IMG 0669
IMG 0682
IMG 0739
IMG 0716
IMG 0745
IMG 0799
IMG 1014
IMG 1170
IMG 1189
IMG 1191
IMG 1228
IMG 1256
IMG 1280
IMG 1403
IMG 1511

On that cheerful note we’d like to send all you loyal & special gypsies our very best wishes for the festive season & for 2023. We hope to see you on a tour or training course soon!

Until then happy travels from

PO Box 123, Scarborough, WA, 6922
Phone: (08) 9341 6727
[email protected]