Outward Bound Expedition
Outward Bound Expedition is a 10-day adventure of self-discovery for teens and emerging adults keen to learn bushcraft and challenge themselves in the natural world.
Enrolment is via application, accessed through each location's information link below.
Ten Days of Adrenaline-Packed Adventure
Get Outward Bound and in the thick of it! This 10-day adventure-packed school holiday program for teens and emerging adults ages 15 to 24, provides a life-changing experience. It is full of action-packed adventure, lush wilderness locations, new friends and endless fun. Whilst discovering and developing your potential on this journey, you will learn things about yourself you never will in a classroom.
Discover There is More in You Than You Know
If you’re just starting to think about your future, this program will help you discover the strengths and abilities you may not even know you have.
Expanding on adventure education and travel, Outward Bound’s Expedition offers activities such as high-ropes courses, abseiling, orienteering, hiking and other thrilling experiences.
Want to develop new skills and accept leadership challenges? Undertaking experiences scaffolded by risk and reward provides teens with a better understanding of themselves and their personal capabilities.
Physical activity, mental agility and the ability to work together as a team encourage teenagers to problem-solve in practical ways. Curiosity, courage and compassion are also areas of growth and development that are drawn on through these specific adventures.
Duke of Edinburgh’s International Award – Gold Residential Project
The Expedition program qualifies for the Duke of Edinburgh’s Award Gold Residential Project. Classification: Activity based – Outdoor adventure courses. Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org to arrange for your assessment before arriving on program.
The Focus is On You
Throughout this adventure, the focus is on you. You will share your adventure with other young adults in a social group, where youth from all backgrounds come together, form lifelong friendships, have fun and support one another through the program.
Get a head start by adding an Outward Bound certificate to your resume. Completing this program is a great achievement. It aims to provide a greater sense of self, and the ability to face the future with confidence, resourcefulness and a determination to succeed in whatever you decide to do.
Personal-Growth Adventure Program for 15 to 24 year-olds with a Sense of Accomplishment
For a jam-packed adventure filled with challenge, exploration and personal development, check out the locations on offer in our Expedition Adventures. Register your teen today and give them a gift that will motivate and inspire them for years to come.
Contact our team on 02 6235 5700 to learn more or ask any questions about the program in your state or territory.
Outward Bound provides a safe and supportive environment for your young person to thrive, regardless of their prior experience on an adventure like this.
Outward Bound’s commitment to inclusivity and diversity means programs cater to people of different ages, genders, backgrounds, and abilities. However, the Outward Bound team are not trained disability support workers or trauma informed, and OB programs are not for everyone.
Programs are delivered in a group setting, with two staff members facilitating up to 18 participants. We are unable to provide 1-on-1 ongoing support throughout the program for individual participants with complex additional needs.
Participants need to:
- Be respectful: physical or verbally abusive behaviours will not be tolerated.
- Co-operate and partake in the fundamental elements of the program, without deliberately disrupting group activities.
- Self-manage living skills in an outdoor camping environment.
Participants may be removed from the program if they fail to meet these standards.
Please read the full Public Program Participant Behavioural and Personal Competency Expectations before committing to this Outward Bound program.
Our Expedition programs take place in wilderness settings with inspiring scenery, flora and fauna to provide an immersive experience of personal development. Locations include some of Australia’s most spectacular and diverse destinations, in and around our environmentally-protected National Parks:
- Tharwa, ACT – April & September school holidays
- Walpole, WA – September school holidays
- Buchan, VIC – April school holidays
Each program itinerary will be unique and dependent on the location for each adventure. As with all travel destinations and experiences, factors such as weather, group ability, and access to National Parks will guide the activities. Please ensure you review the schedule for your exact adventure when you book.
As a general guide, this is the overall structure of our Expedition program:
- Day 1: Setting expectations
- Days 2-4: Developing foundation skills
- Days 5-7: Embarking on the expedition
- Days 7-8: Leadership handover
- Days 9-10: Transferring skills to continue achieving personal goals
Outward Bound’s Expedition program fees include all accommodation, national park entry fees, meals, activities and specialised equipment that you may need on the adventure.
The Navigator adventures start at $1,997 per person, incl. GST person for 10 days.
Our expedition-based programs are established to take you on an adventure through some of Australia’s most spectacular national parks and wilderness settings. Every few nights, you will set up camp in a new location. Each area features comfortable camping facilities to provide a happy, enjoyable camp experience. Teenagers will share service facilities with members of the same gender.
Toilets and bathroom amenities are conditional on the specific location of each campsite.
Meals & Catering
Fresh and healthy food options are made available for participants throughout the program. All breakfasts, lunches, dinners, and snacks (including water) are provided within each location. Program experiences of food preparation, cooking and eating together form part of the activity, building new skills and capabilities, bonding the group and sharing responsibilities. For those with allergies or specific dietary requirements, please contact us to discuss how we can best provide for your teen.
Outward Bound provides all activity equipment, your hiking pack, sleeping shelter and cooking equipment. Each participant’s personal items required for the adventure will be outlined in your packing list for each specific camp location. Everything else – we provide!
Trained professionals administer and manage the camp itinerary. These program facilitators are familiar with the needs and abilities of teenagers. They will support, encourage and assist each person to challenge themselves and feel proud of their achievements.
We are not psychologists or therapists, but we certainly make it our mission to ensure that everyone has a fantastic time.
Where possible, we can adjust the program to cater to your teen’s particular needs to ensure their well-being, safety, and comfort when away from home.
Support & Encouragement
Each program emphasises age-appropriate skills development. Teens will be encouraged to engage in new challenges, collaborate and support a group of peers and, most importantly – have fun. They will learn to take on new challenges, consider risk and develop courage and resilience.
Come prepared and leave energised to tackle anything life throws your way!
The Expedition program’s packing list details the personal items you will be required to bring along for your 10-day adventure. Specific location-based lists are available on each location’s adventure information page.
It is expected that all participants arrive with the items listed. If you do not own some of these already, consider borrowing from friends or family or buying second hand. Please ensure all clothing items are not made of cotton. Cotton is not appropriate for your program due to its poor insulation properties.
We’re always happy to answer any questions you may have over the phone (1800 267 999). Here are the answers to a few frequently asked questions.
Where am I sleeping?
Our programs are expedition-based. You will be hiking to a new expedition campsite every night where you will share a bivvy (A-frame tarp, with waterproof groundsheet and sleeping mat.)
What will I eat?
We value fresh food and endeavour to organise regular food drops for you to enjoy throughout your program. Participants will learn to cook a variety of group-based meals, including pasta, rice, burritos, and perhaps even a roast dinner. We are able to cater for most dietary requirements. We will request your specific dietary needs before the program.
Can I bring technology on program?
An Outward Bound program is your opportunity to ‘disconnect to reconnect’. We encourage adult participants to not use technology such as phones, tablets, music players, etc. during your program. If you need to bring these items, we can securely store these while you are out in the bush.
Do I have to wear hiking boots?
We recommend hiking boots for all our programs. If you are unable to source these, you will need to find a suitable pair of lace-up, fully enclosed footwear, that has a rigid sole and provides ankle stability.
Do I have to bring the wet weather clothing?
We use the rain jacket and waterproof overpants as a heat-trapping layer in the evenings, just as much as a waterproof cover in the case of rain. For the majority of situations, we continue with our program when it is raining, and so very strongly encourage participants to provide these items.
Do I have to bring the thermals?
For programs running May – September, yes you do need to bring the thermal top and bottom to program. For programs running at other times, you can choose if you want to bring these or not. Overall, we recommend bringing thermals for any time of year, as they can act as a lightweight jumper in the evenings, or as a pair of pyjamas (which are not a part of our packing list).
What activities will I be doing?
All Outward Bound programs include a hiking expedition and team initiatives. The program length and location may include abseiling, rock-climbing and high ropes. Programs in Western Australia and Victoria usually include a water-based activity.
Do I have to be very fit to come on a program?
An Outward Bound program is an expedition in the natural environment, so you need to feel confident enough to manage walking on uneven ground for 5-10km every day of your program length, carrying a hiking backpack that weighs a minimum of 6kg. A fully loaded hiking pack typically weights approximately 15kg. We do adjust our programs to meet the capabilities of each group.
Where are the programs held?
All-year-round programs operate from our national base in Tharwa, ACT. We operate seasonally from our Base in Walpole WA, and our remote set-up along the Snowy River, VIC.
April 2024 Scholarship applications have closed.
The Outward Bound Expedition program is application-based for all intending participants. Along with your scholarship application, you also need to complete the Expedition participant application. Please click here for more information.
We want as many people as possible to experience the advantage of a wilderness program in Australia. Through our charity arm, the Australian Outward Bound Development Fund, we can offer financial scholarship opportunities to those participants who would otherwise not be able to afford to come on a program.
There are three scholarship tiers available on every program. At the time of application, you will be asked to select which Scholarship Program Fee you can afford.
The amount selected is the total Program Fee you may be asked to co-contribute. Scholarships do not include any costs associated with clothing, equipment, or transport to and from program.
We accept applications for all programs throughout the year. First-round notification of your success for any given program will be advised 16-weeks before program start date.
To apply for a scholarship please go to our Scholarship Application Form.
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The recently released Outward Bound International Global Impact Report 2020 revealed the centralizing theme of CONNECTIONS across all regions and 5 CORE OUTCOMES of Outward Bound programs consistent across the worldwide network of Schools. Connections to:
- Social Competence
- The Natural World
- Environmental Responsibility