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AAT Kings Launches Australian-first Aboriginal Culture & Australia Highlights Tour

Guests will enjoy a Dreamtime Experience with Aunty Margret on a walking tour around the Rocks district in Sydney Photo credit: Destination NSW


Cypress, CA – October 2, 2023 – AAT Kings has unveiled the launch of its new Aboriginal Culture & Australia Highlights tour, as part of the group’s new 2024/2025 touring season. The limited season, Australia-first Indigenous focused guided holiday features must-see destinations from city to outback across Melbourne, Uluru, Sydney and Cairns over 13 days, with a focus on local connection, cultural immersion, sustainable footprints and wildlife and nature.


The Aboriginal Culture & Australia Highlights tour has been developed in response to Tourism Australia’s consumer insights, outlined in the global ‘Future of Demand’ research project released late 2022. The report highlighted the latent demand for Indigenous experiences. However, at present, understanding of First Nations tourism is low. Demand increases sharply when audiences are exposed to Indigenous experiences and understand the unique insights they deliver.


Fittingly, the AAT Kings team has collaborated closely with Discover Aboriginal Experiences (part of Tourism Australia’s ‘Signature Experiences of Australia’) to identify and curate Indigenous operators and experiences that form part of the new season itinerary, showcasing a unique and immersive blend of top locations, Australian highlights and Indigenous owned businesses.


“Our customers’ desire is to have more cultural experiences in our itineraries, and AAT Kings is committed to helping drive Indigenous tourism and play a leading role in increasing understanding and appreciation of Aboriginal culture – a major step towards reconciliation and support of First Nations people in Australia,” said Ben Hall, CEO, AAT Kings, “This new tour is just a glimpse into how AAT Kings is committed to growing our range of Indigenous experiences across our suite of travel products, to advocate and highlight the range and depth of Indigenous tourism experiences, across Australia,” he continued.


The Australian-first tour highlights 16 compelling experiences including:

  • Sunset drinks at Uluru, including an exclusive BBQ dinner and Dot Art Painting experience.
  • A behind the scenes Sydney Opera House tour, Dreamtime Walking Tour of the rocks and Indigenous Harbour Cruise in Sydney 
  • Great Barrier Reef trip with Dreamtime Dive and Snorkel
  • A show-stopping lunch at Big Esso by Mabu Mabu in Melbourne’s Federation Square with cuisine by renowned Torres Strait chef Nornie Bero.


Both Dreamtime Dive and Snorkel and Big Esso by Mabu Mabu are two of four projects within this tour supported through AAT Kings Groups’ MAKE TRAVEL MATTER® Experiences and The TreadRight Foundation, alongside Maraki and Koorie Heritage Trust.


“Dreamtime Dive and Snorkel provides a unique opportunity to gain insights from our Cultural Guides as they provide interpretation of the Sea Country on which we operate our Great Barrier Reef tours,” said John O’ Sullivan, CEO of Experience Co, which owns Dreamtime Dive and Snorkel, “We are delighted to be included in this new tour from AAT Kings and applaud this initiative which will make it easier for visitors to access a range of first-class Indigenous experiences across Australia,” he added. 


The tour also features a number of optional tours to cater for international markets and appeal to a broad range of travellers including:


  • The iconic Great Ocean Road and the Twelve Apostles or an Aboriginal Heritage Walk in the Royal Botanic Gardens Melbourne
  • The BridgeClimb Sydney with an option to experience the Burrawa – Aboriginal Climb and a Royal Botanic Gardens Aboriginal Bush Tucker tour in Sydney
  • A Daintree Dreaming Aboriginal Art and Culture tour or Madingalbay Ancient Indigenous Cultural Cruise in Cairns


Tourism Australia Managing Director Phillipa Harrison said: “Tourism experiences which share the stories of the world’s oldest living continuous culture through our Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples are of increasing interest to travelers.


“We know from our research that demand for Indigenous tourism experiences has been rising amongst both domestic and international travelers and that there are specific areas of opportunities for new and emerging tourism experiences. Offerings like the new AAT Kings tour will enable travelers to experience first-hand the stories and cultures of our Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples, who have been the custodians of country, land, sea and waters here for more than 60,000 years.”


The Aboriginal Culture & Australia Highlights tour will have limited departures in 2024 and 2025. Travelers can currently save up to 15%* as part of the AAT Kings New Season Sale which, until October, 31, 2023. share. The tour will commence in Melbourne and conclude in Cairns. For more information and to book visit:


Connect with us – @AATKingsAustralia #AATKings #MakeTravelMatter @inspiringjourneys


*Terms and Conditions

Save up to 15% on selected departures, on land only AAT Kings operated Guided Vacations (First Choice and Best Buys tours) and Inspiring Journeys itineraries. Discount applicable to tour portion only. Valid until Dec 15, 2023 and valid for travel on select travel departures from Apr 1, 2024 – Dec 31, 2024. Blackout departure dates may apply. For new bookings only. Discounts are subject to availability at the time of booking, with limited seats available. Discount not combinable with other offers, not inclusive of Global Tour Rewards Past Guest Discount of 5%. Offers may be withdrawn at any time without notice. Other standard booking conditions apply. Contact your travel agent or speak to our experts for more details. Conditions are correct as of Aug 15, 2023.



About AAT Kings: 

A century ago, the Australian outback was but a twinkle in most travellers’ eyes. But thanks to visionaries like the Pyke family and Bill King, the way we explore the Land Down Under was about to change in unimaginable ways. Over the coming decades, maps were unfolded, desert cruisers and coaches were customised, and guides were trained. From humble beginnings, the company now known as AAT Kings was going places few had gone before, pioneering new paths across Australia and New Zealand and taking intrepid travellers on a wild and wonderful ride. 


We’ve come a long way and clocked a few kilometres in the process. But some things will never change. Like our spirit for adventure. Our oh-so-knowledgeable Directors. The local characters we meet (and will never forget) along the way. The epic, goosebump-inducing stories we’re told by First Nations guides. The life-changing experiences on offer – the kind that only 100 years of exploring affords. We’ve never been more passionate about our next discovery. Join us, and fall in love with Australia and New Zealand all over again.



About the TreadRight Foundation:  TreadRight is a joint not-for-profit initiative established by The Travel Corporation’s (TTC) family of brands. The foundation’s singular mission is to MAKE TRAVEL MATTER® by providing support to community-based projects worldwide that safeguard the planet, people and wildlife. To date, the foundation has supported 60+ sustainable tourism projects in 280+ communities worldwide. In 2022, The Travel Corporation became the first global tour operator with near-term, long-term, and net zero targets, and to support its journey to net zero, TreadRight shifted its focus to supporting nature-based solutions and conservation efforts that protect biodiversity and restore the planet. Current initiatives include Trees For Life’s Wild Pine project, Project Vesta, GreenWave, Rainbow Railroad, and The Tourism Pathways Project. To learn more about past and current work at TreadRight, please visit and follow TreadRight on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter using our hashtag #MakeTravelMatter.