Check the length and difficulty and if walking without a guide, tell someone where you’re going and when you expect to return. Wear protective footwear, a hat, sunscreen and insect repellent, carry a map and plenty of water. When walking read maps and signs, stay on the track, behind safety barriers and away from cliff edges.
Dehydration and Sun Protection
Dehydration is a common condition suffered so increase your daily fluid intake to approximately one litre of water per hour. Many Parks and Reserves do not have a supply of drinking water so always carry water with you.
The sun in the Red Centre is strong, always wear a shirt, hat, sunglasses, and a minimum SPF 30+ sunscreen lotion. Apply sunscreen regularly, even if cloudy, and stay out of the sun during the middle of the day when the sun is strongest.
To prevent the risk of bushfire, take note of fire restrictions, build fires in the fire pits provided, never leave a fire unattended, share with other travellers when possible and always fully extinguish your fire when finished.
Fire wood is a precious resource that grows slowly in our arid climate – so please use it sparingly. Be sure to collect any additional wood outside of the protected Parks and Reserves.
You’ll find plenty of waterholes to swim in around Central Australia. Check the safety signs and exercise caution before entering any water. Don’t jump or dive into shallow water, waterholes, rivers or creeks as submerged rocks and logs can cause serious injury.
Travelling with Pets
Dogs and cats cannot be taken into any National Park and most accommodation houses including caravan parks do not allow pets. The Alice Springs Visitor Information Centre can provide advice about pet friendly alternatives, including local kennels.
Central Australia has four seasons with large temperature ranges between day and night. During the summer months the temperature can reach the low 40oCs where as the cooler months have a moderate daily temperature which means you can explore the region more comfortably. Be aware that overnight temperatures can drop to 0oC or below during winter months so you’ll need to be well equipped.
The Red Centre is home to a range of creepy crawlies including mosquitoes, insects, spiders and snakes. Be mindful that snakes inhabit most areas of Central Australia so be cautious when walking through long grass and stay on the clearly marked paths, wear protective clothing and sturdy shoes. If camping keep your tent zipped and check your shoes before wearing them. If bitten by a snake seek medical attention immediately.
Mosquitoes are most present at dawn and dusk so cover up and use a reliable repellent to make travelling more comfortable. Don’t feed or play with native animals as they may scratch or bit.