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Explorer's Way

Australian Touring Routes

Northern Territory Drives & Tourism Routes

Explorer's Way
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View our range of Alice Springs, Uluru, Kata Tjuta, the Olgas, Kings Canyon and other tours. Many of the tours commence from Alice Springs, Ayers Rock and Darwin.

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Northern Territory Tours
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Explorer's Way - Northern Territory Touring Routes - Tourism Drives

The popular Explorer's Way tourism drive takes you right through the heart of Central Australia, connecting Adelaide to Darwin, crossing the state / territory border of South Australia and the Northern Territory.

The Explorer's Way mainly follows the Stuart Highway, a sealed highway, that follows the route of the explorer John McDouall Stuart who in 1862 became the first person to traverse the continent from south to north.

Whilst the tourism drive starts in Adelaide, the Stuart Highway actually starts in Port Augusta, although you also have the option to start in Darwin and head south.

This great drive being mainly bitumen is popular with young back packers to grey nomads, especially those wanting to visit Central Australia and Alice Springs.

Monument marking the Tropic of CapricornWhilst the entire route can be done in seven days, more pleasure can be derived by taking at least two weeks, doing overnight stays or longer at some of the destinations and side detours along the route.

For those only wanting to do the Northern Territory section of the Explorer's Way, there are a number of great side detours including Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park, Kings Canyon and the MacDonnell Ranges.

Whilst this route is enjoyed by cyclist, campervans, caravans, 4 wheel drives, another unique holiday experience, is on board The Legendary Ghan, offering a great train journey through the heart of Australia.

Check out our listing of Northern Territory accommodation, including Darwin accommodation, and Central Australia accommodation. In addition to our listed online travel guide information, contact the local tourism visitor centre for your destination for more attractions, tours, local maps and other information.

Information Centre

Explorer's Way

Central Australian Visitor Information Centre

Northern Territory Visitors Centre - Darwin

Parks and Wildlife Service of the Northern Territory
- Regional Office Alice Springs

Explorer's Way Attractions

Some of the attractions along the Northern Territory section of the Explorer's Way include:
Alice Springs
Considered the heart of Central Australia, Alice Springs sits between the spectacular East and West MacDonnell Ranges. With its unique pioneering history, flora and fauna attractions such as the Alice Springs Desert Park, Olive Pink Botanic Garden and Alice Springs Reptile Centre, galleries filled with beautiful indigenous art, there is no shortage of things to see and do in Alice. Check out our listing of the many other activities and attractions in the Alice Springs region.
This can be starting or ending point for the Explorer's Way. West of Arnhem Land, the Capital City of Darwin is located in the tropical 'Top End' and it's close proximity to Asia influence the city's cultural diversity.
Devils Marbles Conservation Reserve
Known as the Devils Marbles or Karlu Karlu (the Kaytetye name), or Karlwe Karlwe (the Warrumungu name), is home to a collection of gigantic granite boulders. Located 393 km north of Alice Springs, this unique formation have over the many millions of years been rounded into oval and spherical shapes, some precariously balanced on top of one another.
MacDonnell Ranges
For those with time on their hands, stretching east and west of Alice Springs are the MacDonnell Ranges, a series of mountain ranges extending some 644 km. The ranges offer many famous attractions that include:
Located on the upper reaches of the Roper River, about 106 km south east of Katherine, the township of Mataranka is a popular tourist stop. With a number of attractions in Mataranka, the most popular being the thermal pools, a sandy-bottomed lagoon fringed by palms, Mataranka other claim to fame is as the ‘Capital of the Never Never’.
Watarrka National Park
Many people driving the Explorer's Way, detour and drive the Red Centre Way with the renown natural attraction of Kings Canyon, as a must see and stop over. This chasm is some 270 metres deep featuring ancient sandstone walls rising up to a plateau of weathered domes. The 6 km rim walk offers an opportunity to take in the magnificent views, from the plateau of rocky domes known as 'the Lost City', down into the cool sheltered valley and permanent waterhole of the 'Garden of Eden'.
Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park
An easy detour off the Explorer's Way is to see two of Australia’s most famous outback icons and culturally significant landmarks, Uluru and Kata Tjuta. This is traditional land of the Anangu Aboriginal and is a site of deep cultural significance to the local Anangu Aboriginals.
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