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West MacDonnell Ranges

Tjoritja / West MacDonnell Ranges is a popular National Park just west of Alice Springs, stretching for more than 160kms, featuring a series of spectacular chasms and gorges. It offers visitors picturesque walks suitable for all fitness levels, including the famous Larapinta Trail, beautiful swimming holes, and great campgrounds. 

The ancient landscape, sculptured over time by climatic change and made famous by the art of Western Arrernte artist Albert Namatjira is on display in the West MacDonnell Ranges. You can find relics of a bygone tropical forest at many of the cool scenic gorges that act as a refuge for an assortment of plants and animals.

Most of the park, including the most popular attractions, is 2WD accessible, with some natural attractions requiring a 4WD.

Things to do     |     Dining     |     Accommodation

west macs hermannsburg map

West MacDonnell Ranges and Hermannsburg Map

Things to do in the West Macs

There are many gaps, gorges, rivers, chasms and pits across the West MacDonnell Ranges suitable for hiking, walking, camping and swimming. Art and Culture also play an important part in the West Macs.

Ellery Creek Big Hole, Mt Sonder, Ormiston Gorge, Glen Helen Gorge, Ochre Pits, Standley Chasm, Simpsons GapRedbank Gorge and Serpentine Gorge are the primary destinations where trailblazers on holiday can experience such adventures.

Standley Chasm Art and Cultural Tour

Standley Chasm - Art and Cultural Tour

Mt Sonder Lookout The Salty Travellers 134427

Mount Sonder Lookout

Ormiston Gorge

Ormiston Gorge

Ochre Pits

Ochre Pits

Art and Culture

The West MacDonnell Ranges area is known as Tjoritja by the traditional landowners and has great cultural significance to the local Arrente people. There are a handful of tours available that provide insight into the local Aboriginal culture, teaching visitors about bush foods and bush medicine, and local flora and fauna. 

Art is also prevalent throughout the West MacDonnell Ranges, with Albert Namatjira making the region famous by his watercolour paintings. Art classes are available at Standley Chasm. Visit Hermannsburg for the Historic Precinct and the Hermannsburg Potters to see a unique part of the Aboriginal Culture.

Standley Chasm Art and Cultural Tour

Hermannsburg Historic Precinct

Mt Sonder Lookout The Salty Travellers 134427

Hermannsburg Potters

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West MacDonnell Ranges Dining

The dining options in the West MacDonnell ranges are located in Glen Helen or Standley Chasm, with a restaurant and cafe respectively. There is a kiosk at Ormiston Gorge and BBQs and picnic tables are available at the stops located all throughout the Ranges. Nearby Alice Springs offers many dishes from around the world, including traditional Australian, Indian and Asian.

Accommodation in the West MacDonnell Ranges 

The only manmade accommodation in the West MacDonnell Ranges is at Glen Helen Gorge. Alternatively, there are several campsites which offer a bed under some of the clearest night skies and brightest stars in the country. Running water and electricity for campervans are available at Ellery Creek Big Hole, Ormiston Gorge and Redbank Gorge campgrounds.

Glen Helen Discovery Parks

Discovery Parks - Glen Helen

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