Conquering Kings Canyon
This camping trip itinerary had us exploring the Red Centre of Australia, and now with Uluru/Kata Tjuta done and dusted and with a promise to return again in the future – it was onwards to check out Kings Canyon, situated some four hours north.
Olgas from the Air
We had saved some pennies knowing a splurge on a flight over Uluru/Kata Tjuta (Ayers Rock/Olgas) would add even more magic to our Red Centre experience. We booked for sunset, knowing the setting sun would produce magnificent colour in the rocks and cast long shadows across the desert floor. Disappointed we were not! From the air the sense of absolute isolation was deeply apparent, with nothing but flat land and massive monoliths to view, amongst a silver sliver that was the road.
Packing up the camper on a cool winter’s morning, it was time to head up to Kings Canyon where we stayed in the Resort Campground (tip: Kings Creek Station is also a good place for base). We doubt there is any free camping in the Watarrka National Park or on the Aboriginal Land, however do your own research to best suit your set up and needs. We got up at dawn to tackle the six kilometre Rim Walk, which starts with an imposing 500 steps up to the top! You will enjoy the 360 degree views of the surrounding land during your 3-4 hour walk, and be impressed when you find the Lost City, and the Garden of Eden – just as we were!
Meandering on Mereenie Loop
Suitable for 4WD, the mostly unsealed Mereenie Loop road is subject to weather, and allows a journey from Kings Canyon to the West MacDonnell Ranges in a loop (tip: permit required to travel on the Mereenie Loop Road). Depending on time available, you have choices such as Glen Helen Homestead Lodge and Campground for a few nights as you travel this route. Check out Hermannsburg, with its interesting history and remaining old buildings. The great 600km long Finke River, some 300 million years old originates from north of Glen Helen in the West MacDonnell Ranges, where it has carved canyons and crevices through rock and flows to the western edge of the Simpson Desert (tip: in ‘Doing Dalhousie Springs’ travel blog, we visited the township of Finke - have a read!).
Stay tuned for Palm Valley in all its glory! Plan a trip this winter, to the Red Centre and Make some Memories.