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Things to do in Alice Springs

Things to do in  Alice Springs

Welcome to Alice Springs

The third-largest town in Australia’s Red Centre, Alice Springs acts as a gateway to the Northern Territory and the Outback—and to a cultural understanding of Aboriginal Australia. Colonial and Aboriginal influences are strong here, and top sights include the Alice Springs Telegraph Station (built in 1872) for history, Alice Springs Desert Park for native wildlife, and numerous museums and indigenous art galleries. Yet for most visitors, the magic happens beyond Alice Springs. The vast, culturally and geologically rich landscapes that surround Alice Springs are best experienced via the informative guided tours that leave town for a day, two—or even six. Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park, a relatively brief four-hour drive away, tops most tours’ itineraries. The park’s crown jewel is Uluru, aka Ayers Rock, whose sheer mass and ochre hues astound even the most geology-averse. Circumambulate its base for a pilgrimage-like experience of this Aboriginal sacred site. You can even get an unforgettable view of “the Rock” on a sunrise hot-air balloon flight. Nearby, the equally impressive Kata Tjuta (the Olgas) are enormous, huddled rocks whose gorges and valleys are popular for hiking. Some tours also visit Kings Canyon, with dramatic sandstone domes, sheer red cliffs, and native wildlife. Closer to town lie the rugged West MacDonnell Ranges, and day-long tours hit highlights such as Simpsons Gap and Ellery Creek Big Hole. And serious bushwalkers can spend five nights hiking and camping along the Outback’s Larapinta Trail.

Top 10 attractions in Alice Springs

#1
MacDonnell Ranges

MacDonnell Ranges

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The MacDonnell Ranges are a 400-mile (644-kilometer) stretch of mountains offering spectacular views and some of the top natural attractions in Australia’s Northern Territory. Visit the ranges to experience Simpson’s Gap, Standley Chasm, and the secluded water holes of Serpentine Gorge and Ellery Creek Big Hole.More
#2
Standley Chasm (Angkerle Atwatye)

Standley Chasm (Angkerle Atwatye)

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Standley Chasm, also known as Angkerle Atwatye, or just Angkerle, is a place of great significance to the local Aboriginal people. A spectacular slot gorge, the deep, narrow chasm cuts through the tough quartzite of the native stone and puts on a magnificent display of color and form as the sun passes through the sky.Surrounding the chasm is a lush valley and an abundance of walking trails. A short walk from the kiosk to the chasm is particularly rewarding at midday when the sun shines directly overhead. Another walk from the kiosk heads west and climbs to a saddle with views of the area's mountains and valleys. For more avid hikers, sections 3 and 4 of the Larapinta Trail meet at Standley Chasm and can be hiked as either long day trips or overnight hikes.Standley Chasm is the easiest place to access the Chewings Ranges for those who do not wish to hike the Larapinta Trail. The Chewings Ranges are home to some of the most rare and threatened wildlife of the West MacDonnell Ranges.More
#3
Alice Springs Desert Park

Alice Springs Desert Park

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The Alice Springs Desert Park showcases the three main desert environments in Australia. Wander through sand, woodland, and river deserts and learn about their different plant and animal inhabitants. Take the short walking route through the park or explore further afield to find kangaroos and birdlife.More
#4
Alice Springs School of the Air Visitor Centre

Alice Springs School of the Air Visitor Centre

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These days it’s commonplace for many schools to offer programs online, where you can receive a degree without ever seeing a teacher. Well, before the age of the internet, there was radio-- the means of how School of the Air in Alice Springs, Australia, nobly pioneered the idea to reach out to kids in obscure destinations without proper schools. One visit to the school premises, which is now complete with its own visitor center (Alice Springs School of the Air Visitor Centre), and you can share a moving experience that shows how the utilization of technology we take for granted has not only brought people together, but shaped lives.Teaching primary and secondary level students since the 50’s, today students are outstretched as far as 502,000 square miles from the school. You can watch a film about the history of this truly unique school, and even listen in on live classes, which have since switched from the radio era to a highly more modernized and efficient broadband internet model. If you happen to arrive when sessions are closed, you may listen in on pre-recorded lessons, with interpreters on site to help you with translations and to field any questions.More
#5
Hermannsburg (Ntaria)

Hermannsburg (Ntaria)

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Around 79 miles (137 kilometers) west of Alice Springs, the settlement of Hermannsburg (Ntaria in the local language) is more than just the gateway to Finke Gorge National Park. Historic whitewashed buildings date from the 19th century, artist Albert Namatjira’s home invites visitors, and Hermannsburg potters craft unique terra-cotta.More
#6
Alice Springs Reptile Centre

Alice Springs Reptile Centre

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In downtown Alice, the intimate Alice Springs Reptile Centre offers the chance to get up close and personal with some of the Northern Territory’s most fascinating inhabitants. The collection of over 100 reptiles includes pythons, goannas, a saltwater crocodile, and the bizarre thorny devil lizard, with interactive shows three times a day.More
#7
Finke Gorge National Park

Finke Gorge National Park

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Covering around 114,000 acres (46,000 hectares) of central Australia, Finke Gorge National Park is one of the Red Centre’s most startling wilderness areas. The Finke River formed around 300 million years ago, and some sights, such as Palm Valley with its rare red cabbage palms, seem to re-create the landscapes of that lost world.More
#8
Anzac Hill

Anzac Hill

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Offering sweeping views over Alice Springs and the MacDonnell Ranges, Anzac Hill is named for its war memorial commemorating World War I ANZAC (Australia and New Zealand Army Corps) soldiers. Known to Aboriginal people as Untyeyetweleye or Atnelkentyarliweke, the hill plays a role in the Caterpillar Dreaming and Corkwood Dreaming stories.More
#9
Royal Flying Doctor Service Alice Springs Tourist Facility (RFDS Museum)

Royal Flying Doctor Service Alice Springs Tourist Facility (RFDS Museum)

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The Royal Flying Doctors Service is the largest air medical response team in the world. The doctors fly an average of 40,000 miles (65,000 kilometers) a day attending to sick people in the remote outback of Australia. They have 53 aircraft operating out of 21 bases with 964 staff and attend to around 750 patients a day.Alice Springs houses the Central Operations of the service and at the Royal Flying Doctor Service Alice Springs Tourist Facility (RFDS Museum) you can learn all about the incredible history of the RFDS and how it has shaped life in the outback. There is an interactive museum where you can find out what it is like inside the planes, you can even fly one in the flight simulator. Experience life in the early days of the service and try your hand at the Traegar pedal-powered radio which was the primary means of communication for many years.More
#10
Alice Springs Telegraph Station Historical Reserve

Alice Springs Telegraph Station Historical Reserve

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One of the 12 stops along the Australian Overland Telegraph Line, the Alice Springs Telegraph Station Historical Reserve is a great place for a picnic. The reserve has walking paths, swimming holes, a bicycle path, and shady spots to rest. There are also free electric barbecues.More

Trip ideas

Ayers Rock (Uluru) Tours from Alice Springs

Ayers Rock (Uluru) Tours from Alice Springs

How to Spend 2 Days in Alice Springs

How to Spend 2 Days in Alice Springs

Top activities in Alice Springs

West MacDonnell Ranges Day Trip from Alice Springs
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Palm Valley 4WD Tour from Alice Springs
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Early Morning Ballooning in Alice Springs
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Alice Springs Camel Tour
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Alice Springs Camel Tour

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Chambers Pillar and Rainbow Valley 1 Day 4WD Tour
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Palm Valley 4WD Day Tour
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Palm Valley 4WD Day Tour

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East MacDonnell Ranges 1 Day 4WD Tour
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Best of Alice Springs Full Day Tour
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West MacDonnell Ranges- Half Day Trip from Alice Springs
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Alice Springs Walking Tours

Alice Springs Walking Tours

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West MacDonnell Ranges Small-Group Full-Day Guided Tour
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3-Day Alice Springs to Uluru (Ayers Rock) via Kings Canyon Tour
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Recent reviews from experiences in Alice Springs

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An amazing tour for everyone
Vanny01, Mar. 2020
Ayers Rock Day Trip from Alice Springs Including Uluru, Kata Tjuta and Sunset BBQ Dinner
They are full of cultural information and of the scared sure and of the area from Alice Springs to Uluru.
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Amazing!
Lauren G, Dec. 2019
Ayers Rock Day Trip from Alice Springs Including Uluru, Kata Tjuta and Sunset BBQ Dinner
If you’re thinking about traveling to Alice Springs and Uluru, you must do this tour, there’s nothing else like it.
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LOTS TO SEE AND ENJOY ON WEST MacDONNELL RANGES DAY TRIP
michaelmC3071HZ, Dec. 2019
West MacDonnell Ranges Day Trip from Alice Springs
This was our first visit to Alice Springs and the West MacDonnell Ranges Day trip was the highlight with lots to see (plenty of spectacular scenery) and informative comments from our driver/guide "Bluey".
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Worth the Trip
Sunshine67537838854, Oct. 2019
Alice Springs Highlights Half-Day Tour
Our guide Tash took us to the RFDS, School of the Air, the original telegraph station and initial site which included Alice's Spring and ANZAC Hill.
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Good way to spend a spare afternoon in Alice Springs
frequent-traveler777, May 2019
Alice Springs Highlights Half-Day Tour
This tour of Alice Springs is a good way to occupy any spare time you might have in Alice Springs while stopping there on your way to Ayers Rock (Uluru).
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This was an awesome journey through the...
Paul B, Aug. 2007
Alice Springs to Ayers Rock (Uluru) One Way Shuttle
This beats catching the plane from Alice Springs.
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A very good tour highlighting and...
John D, Oct. 2017
West MacDonnell Ranges Day Trip from Alice Springs
A very good tour highlighting and stopping at th best spots, about 5 or 6' in this direction from Alice Springs.
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I forgot to review this one as well...
Susan H, Aug. 2017
Alice Springs Camel Tour
But our sunset camel ride was a total blast -- definitely a memorable experience and one of the highlights of our stay in Alice Springs.
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Best excursion in six weeks of travel in AU and NZ!
goneawas, Nov. 2019
Ayers Rock Day Trip from Alice Springs Including Uluru, Kata Tjuta and Sunset BBQ Dinner
Emu's bus driver, Micheal, to and from Ayer's Rock from Alice Springs, and Freddy, our guide at the Rock, were both terrific.
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A nice early morning flight outside...
Kjell-Ake A, Mar. 2018
Early Morning Ballooning in Alice Springs
A nice early morning flight outside Alice SPrings.
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Great trip. We enjoyed Uluru,Kata...
Thomas D, Jul. 2016
2-Day Uluru (Ayers Rock) and Kata Tjuta Trip from Alice Springs
I would stay one day longer at Alice Springs.
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Comfortable, clean and with enough...
Jack S, Dec. 2015
Alice Springs to Ayers Rock (Uluru) One Way Shuttle
Would recommend paying a bit more and do the camel ride in Alice Springs as this ride was basically just sitting on the camel and getting your picture taken.
star-4
Very good tour looked after well, if...
M L C, Apr. 2014
3-Day Alice Springs to Uluru (Ayers Rock) via Kings Canyon Tour
Very good tour looked after well, if going again would use Uluru as my base not Alice Springs
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A long day, but worth the effort...
Jeanne H, Sep. 2017
Ayers Rock Day Trip from Alice Springs Including Uluru, Kata Tjuta and Sunset BBQ Dinner
The only problem was that the bus driver turned back about l/2 hour into the trip to pick up two people at a hotel in Alice Springs and that made the day even longer.
star-5
This is an excellent tour...
Alistair S, Jul. 2018
Alice Springs Highlights Half-Day Tour
Although Alice Springs is a long way from Melbourne or Sydney, this trip made it worth making the journey.
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Although it was an intense 3 days...
Jairo V, Sep. 2016
3-Day Alice Springs to Uluru (Ayers Rock) via Kings Canyon Tour
Although it was an intense 3 days tour, we certainly enjoyed all the activities included.
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Our driver was so pleasant and very...
Patricia J F, Aug. 2015
Alice Springs to Ayers Rock (Uluru) One Way Shuttle
A very good way to ravel between Alice Springs and Uluru
star-5
A must do when visiting Alice...
Julie R, Jul. 2016
Alice Springs Highlights Half-Day Tour
A must do when visiting Alice Springs.
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Wonderful and informative half day...
Gaye W, Aug. 2016
Alice Springs Highlights Half-Day Tour
A must do experience if in Alice Springs to get the full story and history of the area.
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If you are in Alice Springs for a...
Alicia C, Mar. 2017
Alice Springs Highlights Half-Day Tour
If you are in Alice Springs for a short period of time, this is a great way to see and learn a lot quickly.

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