The Kangaroo Sanctuary Guided Sunset Tour
There’s no better way to meet Australia's most famous locals than the Kangaroo Sanctuary Guided Sunset Tour. Hop on in to cuddle and feed a baby kangaroo and learn more about the Sanctuary's efforts to shelter orphan kangaroos at the No.1-ranked 'thing to do' in Alice Springs on TripAdvisor.
Alice Springs Reptile Centre
The next stop on your central Australia animal tour is the Alice Springs Reptile Centre. Meet plenty of local Northern Territory wildlife, like goannas, frilled-neck lizards, thorny devils, a wide variety of venomous and non-venomous snakes – and of course Terry the Saltwater Crocodile.
Royal Flying Doctor Service Tourist Facility
Like the School of the Air, the Royal Flying Doctor Service is a feature of Outback life. Learn about the important job that the RFDS does in the Outback community while interacting with the displays and exhibits - including a life size hologram of founder John Flynn. Step inside a replica of the RFDS PC-12 aeroplane, or relax under the blue sky with a specially blended cup of coffee from local roasters at the RFDS Cafe.
Pyndan Camel Tracks and Outback Ballooning
Take it easy on the back of a surprisingly comfortable local as you traverse the Ilparpa Valley and take in the sights of the MacDonnell Ranges. Thank your new best friend by feeding him afterwards.
A camel's back not high enough for you? What about an Outback hot air balloon? Take off before dawn and watch the sun rise over the rugged landscape. You might even spot a red kangaroo or two! Finish your balloon experience with a glass of sparkling and some delicious baked goods. Perfection!
Outback Quad Adventures Day Tour
You've drifted over Alice in a balloon and cruised the countryside on a camel – so how about something a little more action packed? The Alice Springs quad bike tour on Undoolya Cattle Station will get your heart racing while also giving you an insight into the daily life of real Territorians.
RT Tours Australia
The Northern Territory is not just a feast for your eyes and your ears – your tastebuds are set for a treat too. RT Tours take you on a culinary adventure with Aboriginal chef Bob Taylor, where you can sample 'bush tucker' and authentic Aboriginal cooking in a traditional setting. Bob's three course meals are simply mouth-watering. We recommend the Mbantua dinner tour under the stars at Simpsons Gap, which is his signature experience.
Do it yourself
Whether you’re staying 24 hours or 24 days, you won't get bored in Alice Springs – but that's not to say you shouldn't check out the glorious surrounds. If you want to hire a car and explore the surrounding areas, then trips to the West MacDonnell Ranges, Uluru and King Canyon are absolute musts.
Of course, if you really want to do Alice right, then settle in for a week or two, and explore everything the region has to offer, using Alice Springs as your base. From Uluru to the Larapinta Trail to the East MacDonnell Ranges, there’s heaps to see and do. You can embark on self-guided trips to Finke Gorge National Park, home to the flora-filled Palm Valley, the Finke River and heaps of opportunities for camping and bushwalking. Or just an hour’s drive from Alice Springs is Rainbow Valley, a red and ochre wonderland chock full of trails and wildlife.
If you don't have much time, we’ve outlined a couple of the more popular options.
The West MacDonnell Ranges (Simpsons Gap, Standley Chasm, Ellery Creek, Ochre Pits, Ormiston Gorge, Glen Helen)
Alice Springs sits nestled at the foot of the West MacDonnell Ranges, with the rolling hills providing an excellent backdrop for your budding travel photography career.
If you want to experience the magic of the desert at dawn, get up before sunrise and make it out to Simpsons Gap, where you can see the colours change over the towering ranges in the changing light of sunrise - and hopefully catch a glimpse of the Gap's most famous resident, the black-footed rock wallaby.
Drive along to Standley Chasm, where the rock appears to have been split by a giant pickaxe, before continuing to Ormiston Gorge where you can cool off from the early afternoon heat in one of the world's most beautiful natural swimming holes.
Ellery Creek and Glen Helen are also in close proximity. Renting a car is the best way to see all the sights in your own time – or better yet take a load off and book a tour with one of the expert local tour operators, like Alice Wanderer Day Tours or the Emu Run Experience.
If you have the time, camping in the West MacDonnell Ranges is a real treat. A couple of favourite places are the Ormiston Gorge and the Ellery Creek Big Hole camping sites. But always remember to come prepared with plenty of food, water and warm gear for those cold desert nights.