4.5 star rating: Recommended 27 Reviews

5 star
4 star
3 star
2 star
1 star
  • Location: Alice Springs, Australia
  • Duration:  Tour Only - 3.5 hrsTour with Desert Park - 11 hrs
Discover the rugged beauty of the Australian outback on a half-day tour of the West MacDonnell Ranges, or West Macs, from Alice Springs. See the ranges at sunrise from Anzac Hill, marvel at stunning red-rock formations on a walk through Simpsons Gap and Standley Chasm, and visit the memorial to the founder of the Royal Flying Doctor Service. Opt to spend the afternoon at Alice Springs Desert Park, where exhibits on desert wildlife and traditional Aboriginal culture showcase the web of life in this arid land.

Highlights

  • Half-day tour of the West MacDonnell Ranges with optional afternoon at Alice Springs Desert Park, from Alice Springs
  • See the West MacDonnell Ranges and Heavitree Gap from Anzac Hill in early morning
  • View the otherworldly beauty that time has carved out of red rock at Simpsons Gap and Standley Chasm (Angkerle)
  • Stop at the memorial to flying doctor Rev John Flynn
  • Learn about the dreamtime stories of the Arrernte people, the Aboriginal owners of Alice Springs
  • Includes a tasty picnic lunch, all transportation and expert guide
  • Discover the animals and plants in the desert ecosystems at Alice Springs Desert Park (if option chosen)
  • Small-group tour with a maximum of 16 people ensures a more personalized experience

What You Can Expect

West MacDonnell Ranges Half-Day Tour with Optional Alice Springs Desert Park

Alice Springs Desert Park

After morning pickup at your hotel, travel by comfortable coach to Anzac Hill for a panoramic view of the mountains and Heavitree Gap at sunrise. Your guide shares stories about the history of the area and the importance of this land to the Arrernte people, the traditional Aboriginal owners.

From Anzac Hill, continue through scenic countryside, passing picturesque waterholes, gorges and gaps along the way. Stop at the grave site of Reverend John Flynn, the man who founded the renowned Royal Flying Doctor Service, which brought medical care to remote settlements in the outback.

Then continue to Simpsons Gap, a famous ravine that slices through the West Macs. A short walk along a riverbed brings you to a naturally formed rock amphitheater. Keep an eye open to spot endangered black-footed rock wallabies hopping around the boulders. Stroll through the red-rock walls of Standley Chasm (Angkerle) and the greenery of cycads, ghost gums, acacias and cypress pines.

In this magnificent setting, enjoy a delicious picnic lunch provided by your guide. Sip on billy tea, a classic outback treat that is brewed over a campfire. After lunch, either board your coach to return to town to end your tour. Alternatively, you can continue to an afternoon portion at Alice Springs Desert Park on an independent tour.

Alice Springs Desert Park:

Upgrade your tour to include a full afternoon to explore Alice Springs Desert Park at your leisure. Follow an easy walking trail through the delicate ecosystems of Australia's three main desert environments—sand, woodland and river—and learn about the distinct flora and fauna. Enthusiastic and knowledgeable local guides share their knowledge of the wildlife as well as the traditions of the Aboriginal Arrernte people. Hear some of the dreamtime stories describing the connections between the people, animals and land.

Highlights of the exhibits include the nocturnal house, a simulation of a night desert where you can see rare and endangered animals that only come out in the dark, including bilbies (macrotis) and carnivorous ghost bats. At the aquarium you can get a close look at creatures that you might find in a waterhole, including fish, burrowing frogs, yabbies, and turtles. Watch majestic birds of prey fly free during a demonstration show in the outdoor amphitheater.

In the late afternoon, you can take a shuttle back to your hotel. The shuttle pickup time is 4:30pm.

Itinerary

Hotel Pickup List:
06:35 - A Good Rest B&B
06:55 - Alice in the Territory
07:05 - Alice Lodge
06:35 - Alice Motor Inn
06:45 - Alice on Todd
06:50 - Annie's Place
07:10 - Aurora Alice Springs
07:05 - Chifley Alice Springs Resort
06:55 - Desert Palms Resort
06:35 - Desert Rose Inn
07:15 - Diplomat Motel
06:55 - DoubleTree Hilton Alice Springs
06:35 - Elkira Motel
06:40 - G’Day Mate Caravan Park
07:15 - Haven Backpackers
06:40 - Heavitree Gap Outback Lodge
06:40 - Heritage Caravan Park
06:50 - Ibis Styles Oasis
06:55 - Lasseters Casino Hotel
06:40 - MacDonnell Ranges Caravan Park
06:35 - Mount Nancy Motel
06:40 - Pathdorf Bed & Breakfast
07:00 - Quest Apartments
06:35 - Stuart Caravan Park
06:45 - Swagmans Rest Motel
07:10 - Todd Tavern
06:45 - Toddy’s Resort
06:45 - White Gum Apartments
06:35 - Wintersun Caravan Park

Customer Reviews

5 star rating: Highly Recommended July 2014

For anyone who is thinking of doing this tour, I would highly recommend. Our guide was very informative and had a great knowledge of the area. Sights were magnificent.

5 star rating: Highly Recommended May 2014

We really didn't know what to expect and the bus picked us up and what a great bus it was. It was like a 4wd truck. They headed of to Simpsons Gap. Beautiful which we walked and had a look and then as we came back to the bus the driver pulled out tea, coffee, hot chocolate, cake and biscuits.
Then off to Standley Chasm. It also was beautiful. After we finished the 1.2km walk we went back and had sandwiches, potato chips and a drink served. Very delicious.
Those of us who went onto the Alice Springs Desert Park were dropped off and then picked up again but we had a choice of what times we wanted picked up. I personally wouldn't bother with Alice Springs Desert Park again but for the price we paid it was very good value.

From USD $ 86.03

View price calendar

Low Price Guarantee

Select Travel Date


Flexible Date Guarantee

Enter Total Number of Travelers

(Age 15+)

What's this, and can I change it?

Please note: After your purchase is confirmed we will email you a link to your voucher.
What's this?

Tour code: 2230A24_A26

Advertisement
Advertisement

Viator uses cookies to improve your experience on our website. Learn more about how we use cookies and how to change your cookie settings | Close message