So you have just landed in the Australian Outback, the Red Centre or Alice Springs – whatever you want to call it you have arrived and you are in for one jam packed weekend. Just make sure you have packed sunscreen, a floppy hat and enough space on your memory card to capture the beauty that awaits you.
Day 1. Morning: The Town of Alice Springs
The town of Alice Springs should be your first stop after you have dumped your bags at the hotel. Here you can get a feel for the town, grab some food and even check out some of the local Aboriginal artwork that’s on sale. The town isn’t very big, you can easily walk up and down the main strip with a coffee in hand.
We stayed at the Lasseters Hotel which is conveniently located, has beautiful views of the MacDonnell Ranges and the best bit, there’s a giant pool waiting for you to cool down in.
Day 1. Noon/Early Afternoon: Helicopter Ride Over Incredible Gorges
The first time we jumped into a helicopter was right here in the Northern Territory. Though we recommend you make a day of it and plan a road trip out to Glen Helen’s Gorge (where we flew) there are multiple locations if you are restricted to just Alice Springs.
Cost: Starts from $70pp
Day 1: Late Afternoon: Camel Riding In A Red Dirt Valley
Just wow – honestly this was one of the highlights of our entire trip in Alice Springs and a great way to end the first day of your weekend. If you are flying in midday we suggest you book a sunset ride to truly take in the reds and oranges of the dirt below you.
Read More: Camel Riding in the Australian Outback
Day 2. Morning: Hot Air Balloon at Sunrise
So unfortunately we could not do the hot air balloon ride at sunrise. We wanted to do it so desperately that we attempted three times with one of the tries resulting in the 4am wake up call, the drive out to the site and a no from the pilot due to high winds. However, this should not stop you from adding it to your bucket list as from what we saw, it will be nothing short of breathtaking.
Cost: $390 pp
Day 2: Afternoon: Cycle to Where Alice Springs Began
We rented a couple of bikes from Outback Cycling and headed out towards the Old Telegraph Center, the birth place of Alice Springs. Cycling along the Todd River offered so many picture opportunities along the way, the biggest being the river itself as it was bone dry!
Day 2: Evening: End Your Night With A Unique Natural Light Show
The Parrtjima Festival started in 2016 with tentative plans to run every year in late September. If you are heading to Alice Springs during Spring then make sure you head to this free event to experience a truly unique natural light show as the MacDonnell Ranges are turned into a landscape of local Indigenous artwork.
Day 3: Road trip of the Surrounding Areas
If you have more than 48 hours you have to do a road trip of the surrounding areas to see the magnificent national parks. There are so many within half an hour to three hours drive all as beautiful as the next. If you feel like the drive we also recommend doing the 5.5 hour trip to see Ayers Rock – we have still yet to visit this massive monolith but it is for sure on our list!
Read More: Australian Road trip: Alice Springs & Surrounds
Thanks to Tourism Northern Territory for kindly inviting Flying the Nest to experience Alice Springs. As always, all opinions are our own.
READ NEXT: A WEEKEND IN ALICE SPRINGS