Things To See and Do In Alice Springs


Alice Springs is in the heart of Australia's Red Centre and is backed by the rugged McDonnell ranges. It is home for the Aboriginal Arrernte people who have lived there for 20,000 years.

Alice Springs started off in a small way as a repeater station on the route of the Overland Telegraph. It is a very isolated yet very modern town with a mix of nationalities numbering around 25,000 in total. Visitors come for a month but stay a lifetime because of the range of opportunities and the wonderful lifestyle in this town.



Aboriginal Art and Cultural Centre

Here you can learn to play the Didgeridoo at the only Didgeridoo University in the world. The centre displays aboriginal music and Arrernte art. You can try spear throwing and sample billy tea and bush foods. The centre is located at 125 Todd Street, Alice Springs. For more information telephone: (08) 8952 3408 or visit Aboriginal Art And Cultural Centre.


Adelaide House Museum

This building was home to the first hospital in Alice Springs and was designed by Reverend John Flynn and operated by the Australian Inland Mission (which Flynn established) from 1926 to 1939. This well preserved building houses an eclectic display of articles ranging from a set of Presbyterian Moderator General's Robes to the earliest pedal radio built by Alfred Traeger. The museum is dedicated to the mission and pioneering days in Alice Springs. The stone building at the back of this house was the location of the first field radio transmission in 1926, which made possible Flynn's concept of a "flying doctor". Adelaide House Museum is located in Todd Mall. Telephone: (08) 8952 1856.


Central Australian Aviation Museum

EJ (Eddie) Connellan, a pioneer of aviation in the Northern Territory, established Alice Springs' first aerodrome on the current site in 1939. The hangar was brought to Alice Springs in a prefabricated state from Sydney and erected by Connellan and his staff as a headquarters for the operation of mail and medical flights throughout the Territory. The Araluen, or "town aerodrome" as it was known, operated almost exclusively for mail, goods and medical purposes. All passenger flights operated from the "nine mile aerodrome" south of town near the present airport.

The original hangar, nearby buildings and the Connellan family homestead remain a part of the Precinct. The use of aircraft to deliver mail and supplies was an important factor in opening up the Northern Territory. Connellan operated aircraft for the Royal Flying Doctor Service. The museum was opened in 1979. It is located in the original Connellan Airways Hangar and houses two early flying doctor planes among other historic aircraft and aviation memorabilia. Tel: (08) 8951 5686. Learn more here.

Alice Springs Desert Park

Discover the secrets of the Desert. Stroll through 3 beautiful desert habitats and the nocturnal house and let the guides and amazing displays show you how the animals, plants and Aboriginal people live in the desert. Hundreds of species of plants and animals found across Central Australian deserts can be seen, smelt and heard.

You will have the opportunity to experience desert habitats as they are at night, seeing some of the animals near impossible to see in the wild.

Take an easy walking trail through three desert habitats and discover Desert Rivers, Sand Country and the Woodland habitat, witness free-flying birds of prey in the nature theatre, see rare and endangered animals in the spectacular nocturnal house, hear the insights into the interlinking world of plants, animals and people from the local guides and enjoy a cinematic journey through four-and-a-half billion years of desert evolution. Allow 3 hours to a full day to appreciate the park. Located in Larapinta Drive. Telephone: (08) 8951 8788. Visit: Alice Springs Desert Park.


Alice Springs Reptile Centre

Alice Springs Reptile Centre houses the largest reptile display in the Northern Territory. They have an extensive range of reptiles including the huge Perentie Goanna, Frill Neck Lizards, Thorny Devils and many other fascinating lizards, large and small Pythons and some of the world's most venomous snakes. The reptile centre is at 9 Stuart Terrace. Telephone: (08) 89528900 and visit Alice Springs Reptile Centre.


Alice Springs School Of The Air

This school is a necessity for school students living in very isolated communities. The School of the Air provides an educational service for about 120 children living on properties or settlements covering over 1 million square kilometres of Central Australia.

The Alice Springs School of the Air was the first of its kind established in Australia. It is a compulsory aged correspondence school that utilizes various communications technologies to have daily contact with students, home tutors and teachers. It has been operating since 1951. Live lessons may be viewed during school days. On days/times when school is not in operation, for example, after school hours, weekends, public holidays and semester breaks, there are a variety of recorded lessons for you to view providing you with a full interpretation of how the lessons take place during class times. The School of the air is located at 80 Head Street, Alice Springs. Telephone: (08) 8951 6834 or visit: Alice Springs School of the Air .


Royal Flying Doctor Service

Opened in 1939, the Base operates from a hangar at the Alice Springs Airport and an associated communications, administration and tourist centre in Alice Springs CBD.
The Visitor Centre commenced operations in the late 1970's and since then has grown to become one of the most popular attractions in Central Australia. You can take a guided tour through the Visitor Centre which includes an informative video, radio communications centre, museum, café & bush kitchen and a souvenir shop. The centre can be visited at 8 Stuart Terrace, Alice Springs. Telephone: (08) 8952 1033. For more information visit: Royal Flying Doctor Service.


Frontier Camel Farm

This attraction is located 4 kilometres along the Ross Highway. There are camel rides along the Todd River with views of the magnificent eucalyptus trees and the East MacDonnell Ranges. Visit: Frontier Camel Farm.


National Pioneer Women's Hall Of Fame

The establishment of the National Pioneer Women's Hall of Fame was due to the efforts of outback pastoralist and tourism pioneer, Mrs. Molly Clark, of Old Andado Station, Central Australia and a small group of people who shared her dream. This heritage listed building houses a major exhibition including over 100 photographs of women who fought social convention to become first in their profession. In addition, Women at the Heart, tells the story of the women who helped pioneer Central Australia. The Hall of Fame is located in the Old Alice Springs Gaol, telephone: (08) 8952 9006 or you can visit: National Pioneer Women's Hall Of Fame.


National Road Transport Hall Of Fame

The Road Transport Historical Society is a volunteer based project dedicated to the preservation and presentation of Australia's unique road transport heritage. It does this through its magnificent Shell Rimula Hall of Fame in Alice Springs, the traditional birthplace of the road train. You will see an outstanding display of heavy vehicles, including the world's first motorized road train. The display is unique in its approach to the preservation and presentation of road transport. Visit 2 Norris Bell Avenue, Alice Springs, telephone (08) 8952 7161.


Alice Springs Cultural Precinct

The Alice Springs Cultural Precinct is covered by a single entrance fee which covers all attractions which are open from 10am - 5pm daily except Christmas Day, Boxing Day, New Years Day and Good Friday. Telephone: 08 8951 1122. The following places are part of the precinct:

Araluen Arts Centre

Albert Namatjira's work is on display. Namatjira was an Arrernte man who grew up on the Hermannsburg Mission, west of Alice Springs. Namatjira is famous for painting the MacDonnell Ranges with stunning accuracy. A large collection of his water colour paintings can be viewed in the Albert Namatjira Gallery. The art centre is located at 61 Larapinta Drive, Alice Springs. Tel: (08) 8951 1120. You can find out more by visiting the Araluen Arts Centre.

Memorial Cemetery

The Alice Springs Memorial Cemetery in Memorial Avenue is the final resting place of many Alice Springs pioneers and famous personalities. The cemetery is no longer used, although some plots remain reserved. A new cemetery on the Stuart Highway, south of town is currently in use. Many of the names in the Memorial Cemetery will be familiar, and Josie Petrick's book -'The History of Alice Springs', available from newsagents, will provide information on many of them.

Museum Of Central Australia

The museum was opened in 1999 and features the evolution of the Central Australian landscape and the creatures that inhabited it. Displays include dioramas, graphics and skeletons. Highlights include a giant freshwater crocodile and the largest bird that ever lived, Dromornis Stirtoni, around 8 million years ago. The museum is open open daily from 10 am - 5 p.m. except for Christmas Day and Good Friday. For enquiries telephone: (08) 8951 1120.

Grand Circle Yeperenye Sculpture

The Yeperenye Sculpture is an exciting collaborative public art work. The project celebrates the Yeperenye (Ayepe-arenye) caterpillar, the most important of the three caterpillars that are the major creative ancestors of Alice Springs.

On entering the three metre high Yeperenye sculpture visitors will find information and artworks detailing the caterpillars habitat, life cycle and cultural significance. The sculpture has been developed by metal artist Dan Murphy working with students from the Centre for Appropriate Technology's ATWork program. The sculpture is displayed in the grounds of the Alice Springs Cultural Precinct







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Alice Springs