Nestled on the banks of the Norman River, where the savannah outback meets the Gulf of Carpentaria, is the remote outpost of Karumba. This is the only place in Queensland where you can watch the sunset over the ocean. And what a sunset it is. Built on the back of a million-dollar fishing industry, Karumba boasts the best barramundi on the planet. And whether you’re keen to try it in a Barra Burger or fish it yourself, Karumba has an option for you. At 2,159km from Queensland’s capital Brisbane, Karumba is ever so slightly closer to Darwin in the Northern Territory. And the laid-back, relaxed nature of the residents couldn’t be further from the big city. Karumba is the perfect place to watch the world go by whilst sipping on a cold one and feasting on freshly caught Gulf crabs and prawns.
Fly into Cairns and ride the Kuranda Scenic Rail marveling at the ancient rainforests, dramatic gorges, and UNESCO World Heritage listed landscapes of Queensland’s tropical north. We then see the outback come to life as we traverse through the heart of the Gulf Savannah regions riding the legendary Gulflander and Savannahlander trains before an unforgettable tour of the Undara Lava Tubes in Cobbold Gorge.
Traverse the state of Queensland through Roma, Barcaldine, Emerald, Longreach, and Cloncurry to the Gulf of Carpenteria to experience an epic Gulf sunset and Sand Island dinner. See the outback come to life, learn about the heritage of mining, discover the indigenous culture, and ride the legendary Gulflander train as touring heads through Cobbold Gorge and Undara to tropical Cairns on this journey showcasing the best of Queensland.
No trip through Queensland’s Gulf Savannah region is complete without visiting Karumba.
Without a doubt, fishing is the big drawcard in Karumba, and there are several Karumba fishing tours that will show you the best spots. Another Karumba tour to add to your list is a visit to the Les Wilson Barramundi Discovery Centre, the only hatchery in the world to breed the Southern Gulf strain of this iconic fish. Learn all there is to know about the industry, adopt a barra and try feeding the big mouth fish yourself.
Karumba’s tropical savanna climate has two distinct seasons.
The 'Wet' from December to March brings extreme heat, humidity, and potentially heavy rains and tropical cyclones, closing roads and making access impossible. The 'Dry' is a more comfortable and visitor-friendly time of year so plan to visit anytime from April to October. The humidity is lower, and temperatures are somewhat milder. If you’re in Karumba in September or October, you have a chance to see the rare Morning Glory clouds roll through in the early hours of the morning.
A handful of accommodation options are waiting for you in Karumba, including caravan parks, camping to motels. The End of the Road Motel is the only absolute beachfront four-star holiday accommodation in the Gulf of Carpentaria; it’s where we like to sip on a cocktail whilst watching the sunset on our Outback Queensland, Central West & Gulf tour.
The nearest airport is Normanton; a 71 km drive away. But this region is so diverse and intriguing that you’ll want to discover as much as possible by road. So make your way to Karumba by sealed roads along the Matilda Highway and Savannah Way.
When it comes to Karumba tourist attractions, croc and crab tours are a big favourite. Take a nature cruise to spot birdlife and sunning crocodiles whilst crab pots are hauled up in search of the ultimate catch. Or dine on a feast of fresh seafood on an exclusive sand island. Either option is magical.
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