Things to do, Alice Springs & Surrounds, Northern Territory, Australia

History & Heritage, Alice Springs & surrounds

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Old Andado Homestead, Binns Track, Simpson Desert, Northern Territory, Australia

From Dreamtime caterpillars to intrepid explorers, flying doctors and Lutheran missionaries, Alice Springs has a fascinating heritage worthy of a famous outback town.

Aboriginal Alice

Discover the origins of Alice Springs and the MacDonnell Ranges by sharing the Arrernte Aboriginal people's Caterpillar creation story. View petroglyphs at the Ewaninga Rock Carvings Conservation Reserve and spend an afternoon at the Araluen Cultural Precinct on a self-guided tour to get a sense of the history at the heart of the region.

Telegraph history

Learn about the site established in the 1870s as a central point along the extraordinary overland telegraph line running from Darwin to Adelaide. Uncover more about this feat on a tour through the restored heritage buildings in the Telegraph Station Historical Reserve. Interpretive displays offer a peek into early settler life in the remote Red Centre.

The 'spring' promised in Alice Springs, a temporary waterhole in the Todd River that fills only after heavy rains, can be easily visited nearby.

Early pioneers

Plot the courageous history of local pioneers. Visit the base of the iconic and world-first Royal Flying Doctor Service, experiencing life in the air attending to outback patients. Be inspired by the uniquely Australian School of the Air, and hear stories of kids brought together in a virtual classroom across the Territory's vast landscape.

You'll find plenty of museum exhibits to amaze and inform, including the National Pioneer Women's Hall of Fame, the National Road Transport Hall of Fame and the Central Australian Aviation Museum.

Historic outposts

Head out of Alice to wander the white-washed buildings of 19th-century Hermannsburg, once a Lutheran mission and home to Aboriginal artist Albert Namatjira. Imagine the lives of miners during the gold rush at the Arltunga Historical Reserve, where stone buildings and miners camps are preserved for modern exploration.

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