Entry to the Maralinga Atomic Test site is restricted and the area has a chained gate and hundreds of kilometres of secure perimeter fencing.
Tourist Permits are now available for a limited number of visitors at any one time - from late March to mid-October. The one day tour includes permit for Maralinga entry, a full day tour of the Forward Area – where the atom bombs were exploded and 2 nights camping at the Village campground.
The two day tour includes permit for Maralinga entry, two days touring of the Forward Area – where the atom bombs were exploded and 3 nights camping at the Village campground.
The Note: You need to arrive at the village the day BEFORE your booked tour date.
Maralinga is 400 km NW of Ceduna
It will take you about 5 hours easy driving. Most of the trip is bitumen road with about 80km of unsealed road. The unsealed road stands up well to rain and a couple of inches won't stop you. It can be navigated easily in a two wheel drive, provided you have a reasonable amount of ground clearance. If you hire vehicles, cars or campers, check your limitations for dirt travel with your provider.
Chinta Air do day trips out to Maralinga and the aerial aspect adds a lot to your appreciation of the vastness of this remote part of Australia.
Mud Map Directions
Access to the Maralinga Village is via the Eyre Highway. About 27km west of Nundroo or about 180km west of Ceduna there is a sealed road heading north. Directional signage first appears 78 kilometres north along the Iluka Mine Road. Other ‘white on brown’ reassurance signs are placed at Watson/Maralinga intersection and again at the Oak Valley/ Maralinga intersection, just 8 kilometres south of the Entry Gate. To minimise non-permitted entry, please note that there are no directional signposts on the Eyre Highway pointing to Maralinga.
Maralinga Village is about 225km from Nundroo roughly 2.5-3 hours drive. Allow 5 hours from Ceduna.
Maralinga Travel Co-ordinates. Kindly supplied by Scott Macdonald. For those that use newfangled GPS devices this is a sheet of co-ordinates.
View and download the Maralinga Map and information PDF (about 4.7MB)
Eyre Highway-Iluka Road
The turn off on the Eyre Highway is not signposted at all, though it is a significant intersection. Iluka Resources operate a fleet of road trains that carry ore from the Iluka mine to Ceduna for shipping. These trucks are frequently seen on this stretch and need to be respected. UHF channel 40 is a good way to communicate if necessary.
When coming from Ceduna the turnoff is 27 km West of Nundroo, and the unique Colona woolshed on the North side of the road is only 1.5km before the turn.
Further up the track
The Iluka Road is a great bitumen drive taking in a bit of undulating mallee farmland at the South end which gives way to open myall country then bluebush tableland.