Wyndham, the Bungles and Our Last Australian Stop
Today marks our last day in Australia aboard Silversea’s Silver Discoverer. Tomorrow, we will chart a course across the Timor Sea, bound for Indonesia and the next stage of our luxury expedition adventure that will conclude on Saturday in Bali.
On this Monday, we set off from the small town of Wyndham, Australia for an inclusive flight over the Bungle Bungle mountain range. To reach the Bungles, we’d drive first overland to Kununurra, Australia, which is pronounced almost like my favorite county in Ireland, Connemara. Change the ‘m’ in Connemara to an ‘n’, and you’re left with Kununurra.
Wydnham itself is a trip, and I wish we would have had some time to amble around this small, desolate town. There’s a handful of liquor stores, and the local Bar and Hotel can be yours for a paltry $800,000 (it’s up for sale). The town has a massive sculpture of a saltwater crocodile in front of a school, no less, and a little further up the road is the town’s drying-out facility. “We’ve got a bit of a problem with alcohol here,” says our driver as we speed past it.
If a stint in rehab doesn’t shape you up, a little farther up the road still takes you to the local correctional facility. “We’ve got a lot of folks here, too,” continues the driver as we once again zip past the thing, which this time is surrounded by a large steel fence.
With much of Wyndham in various stages both on-and-off the wagon, we continued on to Kununurra, which is larger than Wyndham and a bit more inviting. It’s still remote and extremely desolate, but it’s a fascinating place. I would have liked to have spent a night or two here, just to see how the town ticks after-hours.
After a quick refreshment stop in Kununurra, it was off to the airport for our flight over the Bungle Bungle.
Different than the ‘Bunga Bunga’ parties that got Italy’s Silvio Berlusconi into a bit of a jam, the Bungle Bungles are a spectacular land formation located within Purnululu National Park roughly an hour’s flight south of Kununurra.
The mountain range was formed 360 million years ago and consists of sandstone and gravel that have become heavily compacted together over time. Almost entirely devoid of jagged edges, prevailing winds have shaped the Bungles into structures resembling large beehives protruding from the ground. The entire area is so surreal that it looks more like something that would be created in a computer graphics program.
Our Live Voyage Report from Silversea’s adventurous Silver Discoverer continues tomorrow with a day at sea before our arrival into Savu Island, Indonesia, on Wednesday! Be sure to follow along on twitter by following @deckchairblog or the hashtag #LiveVoyageReport.