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Lestok Tours

Tom Price, Australia
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Lestok Tours
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Aussienando wrote a review 14 Jun
525 contributions395 helpful votes
Set in the heart of Western Australia’s Pilbara region, Karijini National Park is the state's second largest national park and is over two billion years old. Descend into ancient cavernous gorges, scale some of the oldest rocks on the planet, paddle in crystal-clear waterways and cool off with a swim beneath cascading waterfalls. We stayed in the wonderful Karijini Eco Resort but you can also camp under an outback sky. The days were warm (in the 20’s) but the nights were cold, particularly when no cloud cover with the temperature falling to below ten. There is also an amazing network of walking trails, ranging from easy to challenging. Just a word of warning. The Ashburton Shire Council are an absolute disgrace and do not keep the roads within the park graded to any level of quality. You simply cannot drive a 2WD in the park and driving your own 4WD is extremely hazardous due to the corrugations – and you will damage your vehicle. We chose wisely to take a Lestok Tour and even our driver will no longer take tours to certain parts of the park as the road is too treacherous. SO, the best way to see Karijini National Park is with Lestok Tours - a brilliant day - great knowledgeable and safe driver (Doug). Here's the day: We were picked up at Karijini Eco Retreat at 8am and driven to Weano Gorge which was a pretty spot. (The walk to the Handrail pool was closed.) We then drove to Joffre Falls lookout which is the best spot to photograph the falls. If you are wanting to walk down and swim at Joffre Falls you’ll need to do this from the Eco Retreat (not the lookout). We then drove to Kalamina Gorge - one of the absolute highlights of the day was walking into Kalamina Gorge. Kalamina Gorge had everything – sheer cliffs, spectacular scenery, plenty of water – both at the waterfall and throughout the gorge. Stunning! We stopped for lunch after walking the gorge – a tasty lunch consisting of salad, dressing if you want to use fot the salad), sandwich, cheese, crackers, peanut butter, apple, water and apple juice. (And you can create what you want with the lunch ingredients - I ate the salad with no dressing - perfect and all very fresh.) After the wonders of Kalamina Gorge we drove to the visitor centre – worth a look as it has the history of the area and is a good place to get changed (into your swimmers) for a dip at Fern Pool or Fortescue Falls (or both). Located within Dales Gorge on the eastern side of Karijini National Park, are the wonderful swimming holes of Fortescue Falls and Fern Pools. From the carpark, it will take you roughly 15mins to walk down a staircase (with handrails) and along clear paths to the falls. Turn right at Fortescue Falls and continue for another 5mins to Fern Pool which is a stunning and great spot for a swim (not cold and we swam on Sunday 13th June – swim up to the three little waterfalls and sit under them (on the rocks) – the water is warm and makes for a great photo. Together with Kalamina Gorge this area was the second highlight of the trip. Thankfully after Dales Gorge, Doug drove us back on the paved road to Karijini Eco Retreat. We were dropped off around 4:30pm. The Karijini National Park is not to be missed – it’s stunning – and lots to see and explore. We drove from Exmouth (staying at the amazing Girilia Homestay – about half way) but if you are just going to the park you should fly into Paraburdoo Airport (more frequent Qantas flights than Exmouth). And the best way to see it is via Lestok Tours.
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Date of experience: June 2021
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Sharon B wrote a review May 2021
North Perth, Australia89 contributions28 helpful votes
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Without a 4WD, we two couples were feeling a bit stranded at the beautiful Karijini Eco Retreat... until we spotted the Lestok tours bus picking up passengers for its full day exploration of Karijini National Park. We promptly contacted the office & the next day headed off with our fantastic guide, Doug. The tour fulfilled our every expectation. Karijini is breathtaking and under Doug’s expert guidance we always not only safe, but fully informed as we hit all the major sights, ending with a refreshing dip in Fern Pool. Lovely picnic lunch - incl gluten free - at the spectacular Kalamina Gorge. Don’t hesitate to book this. Highly recommended!!! Doug, we can’t thank you enough for fulfilling our bucket list! Take care, all the best from Sharon & Don, Trish & Bill
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Date of experience: May 2021
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D&M wrote a review May 2021
Perth, Australia278 contributions52 helpful votes
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Without know the area and the access to the hikes and gorges. We were tossing up whether to go it alone or getting a taster of all the gorges in the area with Lestok Tours. We had 4 days in Karijini so could afford to book our 1st day with this tour company. It was a perfect taster. Doug our tour guide and bus driver picked us up dead on 8.30am at the Eco Retreat as the tour promised and proceeded to advise us of the best direction to try to fill in our full day tour. With a few of the pools hikes closed due to maintenance and danger (teal bummer) Doug made some variations to the original itinerary that turned out to be perfect. We got to traverse Hancock Gorge and get our feet wet in a water crossing and took in a number of stunning lookouts. After a wonderful healthy lunch Doug took us to Kalamina Gorge which was something we wanted to do but didn’t have the vehicle to get us there. This was a stunning gorge hike and we got to get our gear off and bathers on to jump into the stunning waterhole at the base of the gorge. After visiting the Karijini Visitors Centre and Dale’s Gorge lookout, Doug got us back on the bus and had us back by 4.30pm. Doug was very informative and knowledgeable of the the area. He was very useful to milk him for all the great hikes, where to start them, how to stay safe and when to do them. I could not recommend this tour enough as you don’t only see the lookouts but Doug loves to get down and dirty and get you walking some of the gorge hikes.
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Date of experience: May 2021
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Happy traveller wrote a review May 2021
5 contributions2 helpful votes
Thank you Doug, it was a great day out. You went out of your way to make it a great trip. Gave a lot of information on the rock formation and the iron ore content, also for taking us for a swim at Fern pool, that was my highlight
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Date of experience: May 2021
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Julie T wrote a review May 2021
Perth, Australia6 contributions1 helpful vote
Went on this amazing day tour with Doug our bus driver for the day, There were only 2 of us ie solo travellers. We had a great day exploring the gorges and getting to swim in 2 of them. Great feeling and a great way to cool down. We had a nice refreshing lunch in between swims. A trip not to be missed when in this part of the country.
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Date of experience: April 2021
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