Aussie ABC – A is for Alice Springs!

Last Updated on March 25, 2019 by Red Nomad OZ

Looking over Alice Springs to Heavitree Gap, Northern Territory
Looking over Alice Springs to Heavitree Gap, Northern Territory

All roads lead to Alice Springs – as close as a fart in an outhouse to the centre of OZ!  It’s not the country’s official geographic centre – but go on!

Standley Chasm, Central Australia
Standley Chasm, Central Australia

Have a look at the map of Australia – how do you find the centre of THAT?!

But exact centre or not, no town defines OZ quite like Alice Springs – aka ‘The Alice’!

This town at the centre of Central Australia is a microcosm of Australia’s quintessence, and is therefore worthy to introduce my Aussie ABC – the archetypes of awesome, amazing Australia (some more great ‘A’ words in case you hadn’t noticed)!

While many Australian landscapes look completely unlike those in and around Alice Springs and Central Australia, I’ll bet that if someone says ‘Australia’ to you, images of this region are what you’ll more than likely first think of.

Glen Helen Gorge, Central Australia
Glen Helen Gorge, Central Australia

Especially the REDS of gorges, chasms, rocks, earth and sunsets …

… and the rugged Outback ranges …

… and the endless blue, Blue, BLUE (mostly) cloudless skies …

… and the distinctive Central  OZ desert landscapes that you’ll always recognise even without a caption!

HHHMMMmmm… perhaps that makes the whole area too much of a cliché?

Or maybe not.

Lets take an introductory tour to see what some of the Alice’s different aspects look like!

An oasis in the desert (courtesy of the Great Artesian Basin), see its unique natural wonders for yourself – regional birds and other fauna at the Alice Springs Desert Park, and local plants and wildflowers especially adapted to arid land life at the Olive Pink Botanic Gardens.

And of course you can’t miss the amazing landscape – it surrounds you wherever you go…

Alice Springs Desert Park
Alice Springs Desert Park

Descendants of the original indigenous inhabitants, Afghan cameleers and white settlers rub shoulders with grey nomads and tourists from all over the world – and the rich indigenous cultural heritage is showcased throughout the town and region.

Storm clouds gather over the West MacDonnell Ranges via Alice Springs, Northern Territory
Storm clouds gather over the West MacDonnell Ranges via Alice Springs, Northern Territory

The Alice Springs of Neville Shute’s classic novel ‘A Town Like Alice’ is almost a character in its own right. And since my first visit in the early noughties, I’ve been addicted to its eclectic mix of cultures, landscapes, flora and fauna – and it’s within cooee of even more unique Australiana (aka ‘oddities’)!

Mt Sonder, West MacDonnell Ranges via Alice Springs, Central Australia
Mt Sonder, West MacDonnell Ranges via Alice Springs, Central Australia

Head from Alice Springs in ANY direction and you’ll see what I mean. For example: Kata Tjuta (and of course Uluru) to the south west. ‘Dinky’ the singing, piano playing dingo at Stuarts Well to the south. Rainbow Valley to the south east. And of course, due north to the Devils Marbles and Wycliffe Well – self-proclaimed UFO capital of Australia.

Trephina Gorge, East MacDonnell Ranges via Alice Springs, Northern Territory
Trephina Gorge, East MacDonnell Ranges via Alice Springs, Northern Territory

You’ve just got to love a place that’s adapted so well to its harsh environment that the annual Henley-on-Todd regatta is cancelled if there IS water in the river! Or with restaurants that combine usually unrelated cuisine types!  It was in the Swiss/Indian restaurant (no longer operating) where a staff member once mistook me for a man – the dim light, perhaps?  Or should I just rethink that androgynous haircut …

And it’s possibly the only place in the country – if not the world! – where you can stay in the ‘G’day Mate’ caravan park!

Ochre Pits, West MacDonnell Ranges via Alice Springs, Central Australia
Ochre Pits, West MacDonnell Ranges via Alice Springs, Central Australia

Of course there’s WAAAAY more to Alice Springs than this – museums, parks, Indigenous heritage, lookouts, art, waterholes – so if you’re looking for the definitive exposé of this fascinating region, my Aussie ABC isn’t it.

But if it’s left you wanting more of the laid-back Central Australian vibe in and around (arguably) Australia’s most intriguing town, do it the easy way and let the My Adventure Store travel experts show you around!

West MacDonnell Ranges, Northern Territory
West MacDonnell Ranges, Northern Territory

Want MORE of my take on TOP Aussie Town Alice Springs and Central Australia?

Rainbow Valley, Central Australia (pic by Pilchard)
Rainbow Valley, Central Australia (pic by Pilchard)
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  1. @Magda – thanx right back! Come back soon!
    @samsstuff – Well … the outback is a bit like Arizona (from the pix I’ve seen!) but lots more is completely different!! Thanx for dropping by!

  2. It’s great to be able to have a look at Australia, I’ve always wanted to visit! So lovely & so like Arizona (where I’m from, originally).

    Stopping by from Random Stuff by SAM & the Friday blog hop, to say hi!

  3. Hi from Greece,
    Many thanks for your visit to my blog and your kind words !!
    Your blog in inderesting and you have beautiful photos and reportage !!

  4. @LV – you’re a blogger’s best mate!
    @Mrs Tuna – Of COURSE you can!! Just mail yourself to me so I can see what it looks like …
    @Michelle – well, come on down! I’d be very surprised if you didn’t encounter all the nationalities you listed in your dating expose there!!!
    @River – That bastard! Pay him back and go there yourself now!! Look them up so they can put you up for free!! Winter shouldn’t be too hot …
    @Mary – You’re another blogger’s best mate!! Take care, my friend!!

  5. I love your descriptions of locations and features in this country you so obviously love. I really enjoy your mini photo tours. Have a great day. Blessings…Mary

  6. I have relatives in the Alice. At least I think I do. My ex-husbands brother and his family. It’s been so long since the divorce and nobody has kept in touch so I don’t know if they’re still there.
    “He” went to visit them once while we were still married but didn’t take me and the kids, said he couldn’t afford it. Hmpf!

  7. Wow, these pictures of Alice Springs are great! You’ve made me want to go there even more! I really wish I did when I was in Australia last year. At least now I have a reason to go back!

  8. Thank you for taking me along on another great tour through your wonderful land. After reading and seeing all your shots, made me feel I was right there.

  9. @Jayne – would be magic to see it right now!
    @Teresa – thanx so much for visiting and following! Y’all come back real soon!!
    @Andrew – Nice? NICE??? Now that IS damning with faint praise!!
    @Heavensent1 – well girlfriend, drop back anytime!! Plenty more pix where these came from – thanx for your kind comment!!
    @Amanda – Thank you, and likewise!
    @RetroRoamers – yeah, you can have too much of a good thing in QLD!! The Alice is good too – but in a different way!! Thanx for dropping by…
    @Tammilee – Welcome! Drop back anytime!
    @Kath – yeah, pretty unforgettable!! Both, that is!!
    @fnkykntr – LOOOVE Kings Canyon! But you sure are game heading out that way at this time of the year – may need to imbibe lots of fluids (take your pick which)!
    @Manzanita – Welcome back, my friend! No, her name was Jean – ‘the Alice’ is just an Aussie way (read – ‘lazy’) of shortening everything we hear so it’s easier to say!!

  10. So is “The Alice” named after the young English woman in Shute’s book? I think I just like the name Alice. It’s such an old quaint name… I thought I’d never known an Alice for real but I can count Alice in Wonderland.
    Love and Peace

  11. hey Red Nomad thanks, this is very timely for me – im visiting Alice (and doing the Uluru/Kings C circuit) soon, interesting to get your low-down. Exciting to know its particularly green and pretty at the moment (comment above), though I think the heat will still be killer – it will be my first time in the outback!

  12. Following you from the blog hop!
    Love the information, you have here! Have a great day!

  13. I’ve been hearing that it’s remarkably colourful and lush at the moment due to the rains which have brought on the many wildflowers 🙂

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