Young Adult Adventures

Programs for new adults 18-25 years.

Emerging Leaders
Ages 18-25
Discover your capacity for leadership in unusual environments, literally and metaphorically. Learn outside in the unique Australian landscape. Meet like-minded connections, and add a highlight experience to your resume.
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Ngunnawal Learning
Ages 16-24
Embrace ACT First Nations’ cultural knowledge, values and understanding of Country. This program is designed for the Duke of Edinburgh's Award Gold Residential Project. However, you do not need to be doing the Award to attend.
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Ages 16-24
Personal mindfulness, paired with restoration projects post the 2019/2020 Summer bushfires. This program is designed for the Duke of Edinburgh's Award Gold Residential Project, but you don't need to be in the Award to attend.
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Essential Information
Why do a 'Young Adult' program?

We know how it is: you’re an adult now, but you still want to experience life with a cohort that is close to your age.

Young Adult programs with Outward Bound Australia are designed to help you develop your personal and emerging professional skills, giving you the confidence to take on your world.

What would I do on program?

At its heart, an Outward Bound program is a multi-day experience in the natural environment.

Most programs are expedition-based, meaning you will be hiking to a different campsite each day. Depending on the location, you will also have the opportunity to engage in adventure activities including abseiling, high ropes, rock-climbing, and river paddling.

All Outward Bound Australia programs are guided by relevant learning outcomes. Young Adult programs focus on:

  • Personal and small group leadership
  • Motivation and initiative
  • Collaborative problem solving

Safety is serious business. At all times our programs are facilitated by qualified and trained instructors, with a clear understanding of our Safety Policy.

All necessary safety and risk assessments are undertaken to ensure the health and welfare of participants comes first. Our Risk Management Policy can be located here: Risk Management Policy.

We balance risk, reward and responsibility as core tenets of our mission. We actively encourage and support participants to  realise how amazing they really are.


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 wherever possible, and organise regular food drops to provide fresh ingredients throughout your program. Participants will learn to cook a variety of group meals, including pasta, rice, burritos, and maybe 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’, so we do not permit technology such as phones, tablets, music players, etc. on our programs. If you need to bring these for your journey to or from program, then we can securely store these for you while you are out bush.

What do I have to bring?

Each program has a specific packing list, and participants are expected to provide everything mentioned. Please refer to the specific program you are interested in to see what clothing and equipment is required.

What activities will I be doing?

All Outward Bound programs include a hiking expedition and team initiatives. Other activities may include abseiling, rock-climbing and high ropes. Programs in Walpole WA and Snowy River VIC usually also 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. As a minimum, you need to feel confident enough to manage walking on uneven ground for 6km every day of your program length, while carrying at least 6kg in a backpack. Some programs will require a greater level of ability. Please contact us if you wish to discuss your situation. We do adjust our programs in-field to meet the capabilities of each group.

Are your programs suitable for wilderness therapy?
An Outward Bound Australia program is a personal development opportunity, focusing on the outcomes of personal leadership, group collaboration, motivation and initiative. Our programs are not specifically designed as therapy or respite. However, Outward Bound can run specific wilderness therapy programs for people suffering mental illness; please contact us if you would like to discuss this.

Do participants come with friends, or as individuals?
Most participants arrive on their own, and depart with a set of new friends.

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.

What are the toilet facilities?

Due to environmental reasons, we don’t regularly use pit toilets while camping out. As an alternative to this we have a hygienic, private toileting system that we assemble for use each day of each program.

I’m over/under the age limits in my preferred program, can I still enrol?

Our programs are carefully constructed to suit specific age levels. Because of this we rarely allow anyone into a program that they do not qualify for. If you would like to join a program outside of your age bracket, please contact us to discuss your situation.

Can I bring a camera?

You can bring a non-phone camera on program. However there are times when you will not be permitted to use it, such as roping activities, group debriefs etc. If you do bring a camera, please ensure it is well protected and waterproofed. Before you take photos that have other people, you must gain the consent of everyone visible.

I follow cultural routines; can I follow them during a program?

Yes, as long as the cultural routines are permissible within our Safe Operating Procedures and insurance policies. Our staff will do their best to provide ample time and space for your cultural practices, please disclose your needs to our staff as soon as possible so that we can do our best to accommodate them. Participants who are unable to wear a helmet will not be able to undertake activities where a helmet is required. Safety must come first at Outward Bound Australia.

What gear does Outward Bound Australia supply?

Unless you are advised otherwise, Outward Bound Australia supplies essential items such as backpack, sleeping mat, sleeping shelter, food, cooking and specialist activity equipment. You are required to bring your own sleeping bag, clothing, personal camping equipment (eg head torch), personal hygiene items and any medication you may require on program.

Core Outcomes of Outward Bound Programs

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:

  1. Self
    • Resilience
    • Confidence
  2. Others
    • Compassion
    • Social Competence
  3. The Natural World
    • Environmental Responsibility
Adventure Activities to Drive Personal Development
Kayaking & Canoeing
Responsibility, risk-taking and independence.
Raising awareness of the critical relationship between behaviour and consequences is one of your most important learning experiences.
High Ropes & Giant Ladder
Building social and physical confidence.
Courageous moments build momentum in your life – you will take these experiences home and build on them in your daily lives.
Hiking & Orienteering
An enthusiasm for the natural world.
Developing passion and interest in the natural environment helps us see the world in a different light. You will be inspired!
Abseiling & Rock Climbing
Nurturing optimism and resilience.
Program activities support your positive mindset, helping you to participate willingly and proactively in unanticipated challenges.
Raft Building & Problem-Solving
Practicing patience and team building exercises.
Differing life experiences, skills and abilities come together, giving you insight into working with others for the greater good.
Overnight Expeditions
Seeking a spirit of Initiative and adventure.
Our programs provide a positive outlet for defining boundaries, seeking meaningful and challenging experiences rather than mere “thrill-seeking”.
Our Crew
Helene de Lagillardaie
Head of Operations
Our regional and mobile operations and field crew are managed by Helene. Helene brings a breadth of international expertise and has established a reputation as one of OBs most respected, hard-working leaders, inspiring and mentoring a dedicated field crew.
Emily Boem
Group Instructor, Instructors, Operations
Ian Wells
Head of Sales and Marketing
Ian leads our business development, marketing and social media – as the consummate passionate spruiker of all things Outward Bound. Ian was a founder of Sydney Coast Walks and has developed OB to become an Open Award Centre for Duke of Edinburgh programs.
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