Small group tour exploring Alice Springs and Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park

Explore and learn about historic Alice Springs, The MacDonnell ranges, and Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park. This escorted small group tour for mature and senior travellers, travelling as a couple or solo travellers also visits the Hermannsburg Lutheran mission plus Henbury meteorite site learning about the Aboriginal outback and contemporary art.

From A$8,995 AUD

Available

Highlights

  1. 1. See East & West MacDonnell Ranges.
  2. 2. Learn about the Aboriginal and colonial history as well practices today in managing the Landscape.
  3. 3. Learn and see contemporary Aboriginal art from Papunya region and the Hermannsburg mission.
  4. 4. Visit ecological and extra terrestrial sites of importance close to Alice Springs in the National parks.
Small group tour exploring Alice Springs and Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park itinerary

Departure Dates

Departure Date Price
07 November 2021

Ends 19 November 2021

Selected
13 March 2022

Ends 25 March 2022

17 April 2022

Ends 29 April 2022

01 May 2022

Ends 13 May 2022

12 June 2022

Ends 24 June 2022

17 July 2022

Ends 29 July 2022

31 July 2022

Ends 12 August 2022

28 August 2022

Ends 09 September 2022

06 November 2022

Ends 19 November 2022

12 March 2023

Ends 25 March 2023

16 April 2023

Ends 29 May 2023

01 May 2023

Ends 14 May 2023

11 June 2023

Ends 24 June 2023

Small group tour exploring Alice Springs and Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park

Discover World Heritage values of the Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park. This safari includes spectacular desert scenery and explores the Outback’s precious and resilient nature at the continent’s heart. Discover the rich cultural (especially Aboriginal) heritage, while exploring some stunning parts of this red landscape.

This, like all Odyssey Traveller small group tours is limited to 15 people.

This Odyssey Traveller small group tour is designed for mature and senior travellers, in couples or travelling solo, who want an in-depth and informed experience of their travel destination in the Northern territory. Since 1983, we have specialised in bringing Australian travellers to the world: now, our goal is to let you again rediscover your own country.

Our Alice Springs and Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park tour lasts for 13 days, delving into the colourful landscapes and impressive landforms, Aboriginal culture, and rich wildlife of the Southern portion of the Northern Territory.

We begin and end at Alice Springs, where we learn about its surrounding beautiful desert landscapes, Aboriginal culture, and unique wildlife. Alice Springs, or simply ‘Alice’ as it is known now colloquially, is famous for the ochre sands and mountain ranges that surround it, its many Aboriginal art galleries, and cultural events. The Arrernte people, who have lived in the Central Australian Desert in an around what is today Alice Springs for thousands of years, still today sustain a strong connection to this land and a rich culture.

We spend four nights in Alice Springs, before making our way to enjoy the various sites and wildlife of the national parks in the southern portion of the Northern territory. The UNESCO World Heritage Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park is a major highlight as we explore two of Australia’s most magnificent geological and landform features: Uluru (Ayers Rock) and Kata Tjuta (the Olgas). The renowned Uluru is a giant, red sandstone monolith dome rock, comprised of sedimentary rock with sandstone, granite, and basalt. At a massive 9.4 kilometres in circumference and standing 348 metres high, it stands symbolically as the physical and cultural heart of Australia. About 25km west of here is Katwa Tjuta, translated to mean “many heads”, a collection of 36 variously sized rock domes. The domes cover an area of 3500 hectares with the highest dome, Mount Olga, rising to approximately 546 metres above the surrounding plain. Both Uluru and Kata Tjuta have sacred significance to the Anangu, the local indigenous people who have inhabited the land for more than 22,000 years. They believe both sites contain spirit energy, with the surrounding areas the home of their ancestors and inhabited by many ancestral ‘beings’. The park is also home to a fascinating array of plants and animals, including many rare species.

Other key highlights along the tour include trips to the spectacular canyons of Watarrka National Park, Finke Gorge National Park (home to a diverse range of rare plant species), the Aboriginal Community of Hermannsberg (once home to the great Aboriginal artist Albert Namatjira), and the outstanding landscapes of both the West and East McDonnell Ranges (ancient landscapes sculptured over time by climatic elements and today refuges for many plants and animals).

Along our tour we take time to learn about the geology and biodiversity of the parks we visit as well as the different vibrant Aboriginal histories, cultures, traditions, and art styles. En route to our major destinations we also take stops at various locations to enjoy and learn about the dramatic surrounding scenery and sites along the way.

For all the articles Odyssey Traveller has published for mature aged and senior travellers, click through on this link .

Odyssey Traveller acknowledges Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples as the First Australians and Traditional Custodians of the lands where we live, learn and work. We pay our respects to Elders past, present, and emerging.

Articles about Australia published by Odyssey Traveller:

For all the articles Odyssey Traveller has published for mature aged and senior travellers, click through on this link.

External articles to assist you on your visit to Alice Springs & Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park

Itinerary

13 days

Day 1: Alice Springs

Accommodation: Alice Springs; Double tree or Equivalent

This small group tour begins with a welcome reception and dinner.

Day 2: Alice Springs

Accommodation: Alice Springs; Double tree or Equivalent

We have a walking tour of historic Alice Springs including a talk at the Central Desert regional council offices. In the afternoon we have a talk about the contemporary Aboriginal art movement to complement the visit earlier today

Day 3: Alice Springs

This is a day to discover the secrets of the Australian deserts, the plants and animals, and their traditional use by Aboriginal people. These are all impressively presented at the Alice Springs Desert Park. We also plan to visit the Old Telegraph Station next to the springs which gave the town its name.

Day 4: Alice Springs

Accommodation: Alice Springs; Double tree or Equivalent

Today is a leisure day before we depart early tomorrow morning.

Day 5: Uluru

Accommodation: The lost Camel Hotel or similar

We depart early today, before 7.00 am and head south along the Stuart Highway with a possible diversion time permitting to visit the Henbury Meteorite Reserve. The small craters result from the impact of meteorites from outer space. But are key visits today are first to Walingyna (cave hill), this is a significant site in the seven sisters dream time (Tjukura) in the Anagnu, Pitjantjatjara, Yankunytjatjara community. The group requires consent to visit this sacred site.

We then return after this visit to follow the Lasseter Highway west to Uluru – Kata Tjuta National Park, where we settle into the resort before setting off to watch the sunset over Uluru.

Day 6: Uluru

Accommodation: The lost Camel Hotel or similar

The only way to truly experience Uluru (Ayers Rock) is to visit it. No picture can show the magnificence of the size and colours of the rock (348 m high). Like the Olgas, Uluru is set within the Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park, and the same pass that you use for the Olgas covers Ayers Rock. Take a wonderful day walking around “The Rock” inside this World Heritage National Park without climbing it out of respect for the traditional owners.

In the afternoon we will also explore the interesting and sculptured Kata Tjuta (the Olgas), a mass of smaller nearby monoliths, full of legends. Enjoy the spectacular scenery and watch the sun set there.

Day 7: Kings Canyon

Accommodation: Kings Canyon or equivalent

Travel to Watarrka National Park (Kings Canyon), a wonderful area for walking through a colourful and sculptured landscape. This is an area of grand scenic vistas. Breathtaking, 300 m, sheer cliff faces, a geological “lost city” of sandstone domes, and a cycad-fringed waterhole are among the special highlights and are a spectacular climax to the day accompanied by a local guide.

Day 8: Kathleen Gorge

Accommodation: Kings Canyon or equivalent

Explore around Kathleen Gorge within the Watarrka National Park. This is one of the most spectacular spots in Central Australia. Discover something about the Aboriginal life and traditions of this region.

Day 9: Finke Gorge

Accommodation: Glen Helen or equivalent

Make an excursion to the Finke Gorge National Park, where tall cabbage palms and other rare plants grow along the several water-courses which cut through this park’s dry stony hills. The remarkable scenery includes the picturesque Palm Valley. We travel round to Glen Helen.

Day 10: Hermannsberg

Accommodation: Double tree Alice Springs

Travel via the Mereenie Loop Road to visit Tnorala (Gosse Bluff), where a comet crashed to earth 142 million years ago forming a mammoth crater surrounded by tall rock hills. This area is now a conservation reserve. Travel from here on to Hermannsberg, the site of an old Lutheran Mission, and once the home of great Aboriginal artist Albert Namatjira. We have a guide wth us for the day, in the afternoon we return to Alice Springs.

Day 11: West MacDonnell Ranges

Accommodation: Double tree Alice Springs

This small group travels today to explore and learn about the West MacDonnell Ranges. This is Namatjira country and true to the famous artist’s colours. Visit many features along this dazzling drive, including Simpson’s Gap, Standley Chasm, the ochre pits and Glen Ormiston.

The West MacDonnells landscapes are internationally famous.

Day 12: East MacDonnell ranges

Accommodation: Double tree Alice Springs

Today this small group tour explores the best features of the East MacDonnell Ranges which, although less famous than the West MacDonnells, are equally as impressive. Excursions include the old gold town of Arltunga, as well as Trephina Gorge and Emily and Jessie Gaps, along with significant relics of Aboriginal heritage.

Day 13: Alice Springs

Tour concludes after breakfast.

Tour Notes

  • The order of visits may change due to individual venue opening hours and Covid-19 restrictions.

Includes / Excludes

What’s included in our Tour

  • 12 nights in cabin and hotel accommodation,
  • 12 breakfasts, 6 lunches, and 9 dinners.
  • Lectures and handouts as indicated.
  • Services of a program leader and guides.
  • Complimentary wifi.

What’s not included in our Tour

  • Transport to and from Alice Springs
  • Comprehensive travel insurance.
  • Costs of a personal nature.
Level 2 - Moderate

Participants must be able to carry their own luggage, climb and descend stairs, be in good health, mobile and able to participate in 3-5 hours of physical activity per day, the equivalent of walking / hiking up to 8 kilometers per day on uneven ground.

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Departure

07 November 2021

Available

Ends 19 November 2021 • 13 days

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Room Type

Single room
A$10,945
Twin room
A$8,995 pp

Payment Type

You can reserve your spot by paying a A$500 deposit, pay the rest 90 days before departure (excludes AU/NZ tours).

Pay Deposit
A$1,000
Pay Full
A$17,990

Prices are per person and valid until 30th December 2021.

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Make it a private tour

If you have a group of 6 friends or more you can book this tour as a private departure, with all the benefits of our small group tours.
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Easing your journey

Crossing international borders with restrictions

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Pre-departure checklist for travelling across International borders.
Support over email or phone available 24/7 for any questions you have.

For more information see our Crossing international borders with restrictions page.

Book With Confidence

If less than 30 days before your tour starts you are unable to travel as a result of Government travel restrictions, Odyssey Traveller will assist you with a date change, provide you with a credit or process a refund for your booking less any non-recoverable costs.

See Terms and conditions for details.

Peace of Mind Travel

The safety of our travellers, tour leader, local guide and support staff has always been our top priority and with the new guidelines for public health and safety for keeping safe for destinations around the world, we’ve developed our plan to give you peace of mind when travelling with us.

See Peace of Mind Travel for details.

Reviews

The tour and itinerary invoked the spiritual experience I felt in the heart and center of Australia. I was overwhelmed by the entire tour. The coaches were all immaculate and excellent. Martin had phenomenal knowledge and memory. He knew the locals who made us all welcome. Martin was a local himself and shared his connection to the land and its people. I have gained a deep respect for our native inhabitants and knowledge of the “land”. Joan B. April '21

FAQs

Alice Springs

What is Alice Springs known for?

Alice Springs is as famous for the personality of its locals and contemporary and traditional art as the natural wonders, including Uluru, Kata Tjuta, Kings Canyon, the stunning Larapinta Trail and the MacDonnell Ranges, which surround it.

How do you get around Alice Springs?

The iconic Aussie outback town of Alice Springs is small enough for you to reach most parts of the town on foot; however, getting to many of the popular sightseeing regions around the region you will need to book a coach ahead. Public transport includes buses and taxis.

How do you get to Alice springs?

You can take a flight from any of the major cities of Australia and can easily reach Alice Springs, which is also well linked to Brisbane, Cairns, Adelaide, Broome, Perth, Melbourne, Darwin and Sydney.

Is Alice Springs in the outback?

Known as the “Capital of the Outback” or as “Alice”, to the locals, Alice Springs is nestled in the heart of Australia’s outback and beautiful mountain ranges.

Is it worth visiting Alice Springs?

There’s a lot going on in and around Alice Springs, an area worth visiting in its own right, plus from here it’s easy to reach other Red Centre hotspots like Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park and Kings’s Canyon (Watarrka National Park).

What are the major attractions in Alice Springs?

Alice Springs offer many exciting attractions in town, for example, the Reptile Centre, Alice Springs Desert Park, the Botanical Garden or visit one of the many Art Galleries. To venture out, you have to visit th famous Uluru, Kata Tjuta, Kings Canyon and the West MacDonnell Ranges.

How does Alice Springs get water?

All of Alice Spring’s water comes from groundwater. The aquifers in the Amadeus Basin to the south of town are the main supplies for drinking, farming and industry use.

How far is Alice Springs from Darwin?

The total distance from Alice Springs to Darwin is roughly 1500Km, which can take up to 15 hours of driving. As this is a huge amount of time, it isn’t recommended to do it in all one go. Instead, pacing it out in a few days will give you a chance to relax as well as sightsee all the incredible stops along the way.

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