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Walking & Hiking

Part of the Red Centre’s primary appeal are the abundant bushwalks and hikes which are accessible from Alice Springs, Uluru, Kings Canyon, the MacDonnell Ranges and Tennant Creek. Bushwalks and hikes range in length and difficulty, yet all offer views of the spectacular landscape of Central Australia and a close-up view of the plants and wildlife which live in the area.

Kings Canyon     |     MacDonnell Ranges     |     Alice Springs     |     Tennant Creek 

 

Uluru and Kata Tjuta

Uluru and Kata Tjuta National Park are potentially the most popular destinations in the Red Centre, drawing over 250,000 visitors per year. Walking at this location is possible along the base of Uluru, with more intense hikes possible at Kata Tjuta. Visitors can experience guided or unguided tours at this location.

Uluru Walks

Uluru

Walpa Gorge WAE Renae Saxby

Walpa Gorge, Kata Tjuta

Kings Canyon

Kings Canyon is home to many exceptionally popular walks and hikes. The Rim Walk takes hikers along the top of the canyon all the way to the Garden of Eden and above, where 360-degree panoramic views of the surrounding landscape can be seen. The Creek walk takes hikers over the sandy river bed all the way inside the canyon, where you get a feel of just how tall the cliff walls are. 

Ormiston Gorge and Pound

Kings Canyon

MacDonnell Ranges

West Macs

The West MacDonnell Ranges are home to over 28 walks and hikes which can be accessed via either two or four-wheel drive. The most popular trails include the Larapinta Trail, Ormiston Gorge, Redbank Gorge, Standley Chasm, Simpsons Gap and Ellery Creek. Distances vary between 500m and 222km so hikers must prepare accordingly.

 

East Macs

You will also find a number of walking and hiking trails in the East MacDonnell Ranges, ranging from short distances to over 9 kilometres. Visit the new Yeperenye Trail that connects Emily and Jessie Gap (7km one-way), wonder around Corroboree Rock, try a combination of options at Trephina Gorge, or go off road at Ruby Gap. 

Ormiston Gorge and Pound

Ormiston Gorge and Pound Walk, West MacDonnell Ranges

Trephina Gorge bluff WAE Renae Saxby

Trephina Gorge Ridgetop Walk, East MacDonnell Ranges

Alice Springs

Riverside walk to the Telegraph Station

The Alice Springs Telegraph Station is an old communications station located north of Alice Springs CBD. The station is a 4km walk along the Todd River, from Todd Mall in Alice Springs; at a relaxed pace it can take 45 minutes. 

Alice Springs Telegraph Station

There are also a number of short tracks within the reserve that are marked. We recommend walking up to Trigg Hill if you have the time, for full panoramic views over Alice Springs and the Ranges. Section one of the Larapinta Trail similarly starts at the Telegraph Station heading west. For more information and a map of the Telegraph Station, see here.

Annie Myers Hill - Olive Pink Botanical Gardens

The Olive Pink Botanical Gardens, located in Alice Springs, is home to many black-footed wallabies. The best place to see these wallabies is on the trek to Tharrarletneme (Annie Myers Hill). The return journey takes 30 minutes from the entrance to the gardens.

Walk to the Desert Park 

Alice Springs Desert Park is located 7km from the centre of Alice Springs. A shared walking and cycle path travels from the centre of town to the Desert Park.

Annie Myers Hill Lookout

Annie Myers Hill

Alice Springs Telegraph Station building

Alice Springs Telegraph Station

Tennant Creek

Town to Lake Mary Ann

Lake Mary Ann is located 5kms north of Alice Springs, just beyond the Honeymoon Ranges. It can be accessed either by road or via the Ted Ryko walking/bicycle track. Home to many water birds, Lake Mary Ann is a cool and shady spot for a picnic or a swim.

Karlu Karlu / Devils Marbles

The Devil’s Marbles are one of the most famous landmarks in Central Australia. The area is crisscrossed with multiple short walks, most of which can be completed in under thirty minutes. The most prolific of the walks circles around the Karlu Karlu (Devil’s Marbles) themselves. Visitors are asked not to climb the marbles because they are sacred to the local Indigenous community.

Devils Marbles walkers

Karlu Karlu / Devils Marbles

Safety

When hiking in Central Australia, the most important thing to remember is to bring enough water to sustain you and your party for the duration of the day or your adventure. It gets extremely hot in the Red Centre, so sufficient sun protection is absolutely essential, while overnight trips the night time temperature can get pretty cold, so be prepared with extra layers. Bring plenty of sunscreen and a hat to avoid being burnt by the harsh UV rays this area of Australia is so renowned for.

It’s best practice not to travel alone or to leave your residence without telling someone where you are going and when you expect to be back. Some tracks get closed above a certain temperature, so keep an eye on local alerts to ensure you are staying safe at all times.

 

Book your Adventure - guided options

If you are interested in hiking during your stay in Central Australia, call Tourism Central Australia to speak to us about your holiday. We can answer all your questions regarding hiking in the Red Centre and help you to book the holiday of your dreams.

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