The custom-built MV Great Escape and her crew make exploring Western Australia’s remote Kimberley coast an adventure and a pleasure.
Story and photo by Mark Muller

As the sun sinks towards the horizon, the chink of glasses and relaxed, enthusiastic conversation drifts through the warm Kimberley air. From a vantage point over the Indian Ocean on a cliff above Raft Point, guests from the purpose-built 26-metre catamaran MV Great Escape bask in isolation, beauty and subdued luxury – courtesy of the spectacular view provided by mother nature, and good nibbles and cool drinks delivered with themselves via helicopter. Everyone is, understandably, beaming. 

This cliff-top sojourn marks the last light of the first full day aboard Great Escape. The previous 12 or so hours have been filled with exploring, swimming in rock holes, visiting Aboriginal art sites, fishing, eating and drinking. Later that evening everyone gathers for a bonfire and dinner on a small beach on nearby Steep Island. It’s been an action-packed day and one that sets the tone for the four-night ‘quintessential Kimberley coast escape’ that the diverse group has signed up for. 

Skipper Dan Barrett-Lennard smiles quietly at the obvious pleasure of his charges. “It is so good to show Australians their own country,” he says. “There are so many people who don’t know that what we’ve got up here. 

“I love it when people have new experiences – things they’ve never done before: hiking into remote waterfalls or flying into amazing rock-art sites, catching a fish or going mudcrabbing. There are all of these firsts. It can be a bit of a life changer for people.”

This story excerpt is from Issue #111

Outback Magazine: Feb/March 2017