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Kings Canyon

This scenic landscape of rugged ranges, ancient sandstone walls rising hundreds of metres to a plateau of rocky domes, rock holes and gorges in the Watarrka National Park is breathtaking. The Luritja Aboriginal people have called the Watarrka National Park area home for more than 20,000 years. The ancient red rock faces that soar above dense palm forests of palms is an important conservation area and refuge for more than 600 species of native plants and animals.

Kings Canyon is approximately 300 kilometres north east of Uluru and 450 kilometres south west of Alice Springs. The Red Centre Way drive connects Alice Springs, Uluru and Kings Canyon via the Mereenie Loop. It can be explored on a self-drive itinerary or by an organized coach or private tour. 

Art & Culture     |     Accommodation     |     Dining

 

Things to do in Kings Canyon

Kings Canyon is an arid landscape where you can enjoy camping, nature trails, cultural experiences, and helicopter tours. The most popular attraction is Watarrka National Park, the home of Kings Canyon, offering lots of walks including the Rim Walk and Kings Creek Walk. Trailblazers can walk along the top of the Canyon and then journey into the leafy-green Garden of Eden below. The array of native wildlife and plants is truly astounding in its diversity and the sacred waterhole’s beauty must be seen to be believed.

Kings Canyon Rim Walk

Kings Canyon Rim Walk from the top

Kings Canyon PHS Heli

Professional Helicopter Services - Kings Canyon

Arts and Culture in Kings Canyon

Kings Canyon is located in Watarrka National Park, which is home to the Lurtija Aborigional community. Tourists can learn about the role the Lurtija people have played in shaping the land over 40,000 years as well as about more than 600 species of plants and animals which live in the area on a guided tour with Karrke Aboriginal Cultural Experience.

 

Karrke Cultural Tour seeds

Karrke Cultural Tour weapons

Karrke Aboriginal Cultural Experience

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Kings Canyon Accommodation

There are two options to choose from when visiting Kings Canyon: Kings Canyon Resort and Kings Creek Station. Kings Canyon Resort offers a range of accommodation options to suit all traveller types. Kings Creek Station has everything from camping to luxury glamping tents available. Nighttime is spectacular due to the clear view of the stars and milky way. There is no camping or accommodation allowed within the actual National Park.

Kings Canyon Dining

Delicious cuisine is available in Kings Canyon at four providers contained in Kings Canyon Resort and at Kings Canyon Station Cafe. The menus at these venues include a mix of food produced in the Northern Territory, including kangaroo and camel. There is also a bar at the Kings Canyon Resort which serves alcoholic beverages to weary patrons.

 

Kings Canyon Resort dining

Dining at Kings Canyon Resort

Kings Creek Station burger

Famous Camel Burger at Kings Creek Station

Kings Canyon FAQ

Kings Canyon is named after the creek which periodically flows within, called Kings Creek.
Kings Creek was named by Ernest Giles (an explorer) in 1872 after his "kind, old friend", Mr Fielder King.
The local Aboriginal people, the Luritja and Arrente people, call the area of land with which Kings Canyon is a part of "Watarrka". This is where Watarrka National Park gets its name.
If you have the time to fit a visit in to Kings Canyon, then it is something definitely worth having on your itinerary. From the natural beauty of the canyon, to the walks and hikes it offers, the culture, or a helicopter adventure there is something here to entice you to visit for a day or two.
The Kings Canyon Rim Walk is a 6km loop that takes around 3-4 hours to complete. After the initial 500 step incline, the rest of the way is relatively cruisy.
Depending on your plans, and time of arrival into Kings Canyon, you could possibly do Kings Canyon in 1 day.
There are lots of factors to consider in this decision, such as:
- Time of arrival into Kings Canyon
- Activity plans (are you hiking Kings Canyon, visiting Kathleen Springs, going on a helicopter flight, trying the Karrke Cultural Tour, or wanting to relax while you're here?)
- Next destination and mode of getting there (if continuing to Alice Springs which way are you going? Mereenie Loop, Ernest Giles Track, or Sealed Route.)
Once you answer these questions, you can figure out if you need 1 or 2 or more nights at Kings Canyon.
There are no natural waterholes where you can swim in at Kings Canyon. The two accommodation options at Kings Canyon however, do have swimming pools, if you need to take a refreshing dip.

There are 2 waterholes (the Garden of Eden and Kathleen Springs) that are natural, however swimming is prohibited.

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