5 Essentials for Your First Trip to the Australian Outback

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Looking for a new adventure? Planning a trip to the Australian Outback just might do the trick. Its distinct red dirt landscape is mesmerising, and the solitude and peace can make it feel unlike any other place you will ever visit.

There’s a lot to enjoy for everyone, too, with its breathtaking natural wonders, rich indigenous cultures, unique small towns, and abundant opportunities for stargazing.

Of course, the trip of a lifetime requires lots of preparation. The Outback can be wild and challenging, and you will want to bring everything you need when you get there. Here are some must-haves for a seamless trip to this unforgettable Australian landscape.

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When camping at night, it’s crucial to maximise visibility while maintaining mobility. A headlamp lets you enjoy both since you can strap it onto your head, shining light wherever you look and leaving your hands free for cooking, setting up, or getting ready for bed.

The Petzl Iko CORE is an excellent choice for the Outback. Designed for running, it weighs less than three ounces and produces up to 500 lumens of white light so you can move comfortably and efficiently, ensuring you don’t get sand anywhere you shouldn’t or disturb wildlife.


The warm climate is one of the best parts of the Australian Outback, but since it’s one of the driest countries in the world, the sun can be scorching hot. That’s why sun safety should be your top priority—especially since sunburn only takes a few minutes to kick in.

UV rays can deal heavy damage that can cause ageing, burning, and skin cancer in the long run, so you should minimise risks with a good sunscreen with a broad spectrum label that maximises sun protection.

The Ambre Solaire Hydra sun cream is an SPF50+ lotion that provides advanced UVA and UVB protection. It’s perfect for the dry Australian climate since it’s formulated with soothing shea butter to moisturise your skin.


Even when you shield yourself from the sun, being in a sandy area can reflect glare into your eyes. Without eye protection, this can cause eye injuries that may result in light sensitivity, blind spots, and distorted vision.

As such, it’s crucial to wear sunglasses, particularly ones with polarised lenses that filter out horizontal light waves that bounce off sand and other reflective surfaces. You should buy some sunglasses online from an established brand, as they will guarantee the proper protection.

Sunglasses from renowned activewear brand Oakley are designed with outdoor activities in mind, as they are lightweight and you can get polarised lenses on any model you choose.

The Sutro Lite is a suitable design for the Outback since its high-wrap shield gives ample coverage. More importantly, it can protect you from the Outback’s abundant sand and dirt environment—all while providing polarisation for enhanced visual clarity.

Welcome to the outback sign on the roadside on the way into the South Australian Outback

Power Bank

Whether camping out or staying at lodgings in town, routes in the Outback can take long to traverse. For safety, your devices should always be available for use.

Bringing a power bank can be crucial when hiking extra long hours or being farther away from your destination than expected. The PowerCore Slim 10K PD is a great lightweight choice for maximum capacity, packing 10,000mAh.

It also allows you to charge two devices simultaneously, so you always have a backup gadget at your disposal.

Insect Repellent

The Australian Outback has diverse wildlife, including kangaroos, emus, lizards, and wedge-tailed eagles. But with that comes a diverse range of insects, as well.

It’s especially important to be vigilant about mosquito bites as there is a rise in Murray Valley encephalitis, West Nile virus, and Japanese encephalitis in the area.

After you put on sunscreen, it’s therefore vital to apply insect repellents on all areas of your skin not covered by clothing. It’s equally important to reapply that repellent regularly, especially if you sweat, get wet, or notice mosquitoes continue landing on your skin.

The Jungle Formula Maximum Repellent Aerosol is great for protection against mosquitoes, as well as other biting insects and ticks. It’s also easy to apply since you simply have to spray it. The best part? It’s not greasy, so you can wear it comfortably for maximum protection.

When you embark on the trip of a lifetime, you want to make sure that everything is in order. With these five essentials, you can take on anything the Australian Outback has to offer.

Before you go…read these next
23 Unique Things to do in Coober Pedy
Flight Over Lake Eyre from William Creek
Outback Road Trip Itinerary

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Josie sitting cross-legged in a garden
About the author

Josie Kelsh is South Australian, born and bred, living here for her whole life. Travelling all over the world has shown her exactly how amazing South Australia is to live and travel in and she uses her passion to show it to you the way a local sees it.