Tjoritja West MacDonnell National Park offers a scenic landscape that stretches for 161 kilometres west of Alice Springs. Visitors to the region can spend a leisurely day exploring the many gorges and waterholes. If you are going for a dip in the waterhole, the water is cold, even in summer. The larger waterholes are more lightly to have water and include Ellery Creek Big Hole, Ormiston Gorge, Glen Helen Gorge and Redbank Gorge.

Waterhole at Redbank Gorge
Waterhole at Redbank Gorge, West MacDonnell Ranges, NT.

There are opportunities to explore the area and its history on foot, and for longer stays you can pitch a tent. There are campsites in the park, with varied access and facilities, camping fees apply. Overnight visitors should bring their own water and other supplies. Glen Helen Resort offers commercial facilities accommodation.

View down into Ormiston Gorge waterhole
View down into Ormiston Gorge waterhole, West MacDonnell Ranges, NT.

For the walker and hiker, numerous marked walking tracks are available that range from leisurely to adventurous. The Larapinta Trail stretches through the park stretching some 223 kilometres and offers extended and overnight bush walks for those who are fit, experienced and well prepared.

Redbank Gorge, West MacDonnell Ranges
Redbank Gorge, West MacDonnell Ranges, NT.

This beautiful national park encompasses an ancient landscape that has been sculpted over time by climatic elements. It includes one of the largest rivers in Central Australia, the Finke River System, cited as being ‘the oldest river in the world’, with it’s source starting in the MacDonnell Ranges in the Northern Territory. It is the main drainage of the southern part of Central Australia.

The area is home to many flora and fauna, being a refuge for rare and threatened plants as well as wildlife.

The landscape is significant to the Arrernte people, that include a number of significant dreaming trails and stories. There is also the Ochre Pits, important quarry for ochre pigments.

Ochre Pits, West MacDonnell Ranges
Ochre Pits, West MacDonnell Ranges, NT.