TRAVEL PLAN­NER

4 x 4 Australia - - Explore -

ALICE Springs has all the ameni­ties you’ll need to stock up for a long or a short of­froad ad­ven­ture to the sur­round­ing re­gions. Ac­com­mo­da­tion ranges from lux­ury re­sorts and ho­tels, to ex­cel­lent car­a­van parks and camp­ing grounds.

For info about all na­tional park vis­i­tor and camp­ing fees, plus track con­di­tions, check out: www.park­sand­wildlife.nt.gov.au

Finke Gorge Na­tional Park is 127km west of Alice Springs, via Lara­p­inta Drive. As well as the 4x4 track that runs north-south through this park, there is also a side track to Palm Val­ley and its camp­ground, which is well worth a visit. Be fully pre­pared when driv­ing in this park and take plenty of re­cov­ery gear. Also, check be­fore­hand as to whether the track is open. Bush camp­ing is free along this route.

Ruby Gap Na­ture Park is 149km east of Alice Springs, via the Ross High­way. The fi­nal track in is for high-clear­ance 4x4 ve­hi­cles only. The camp­sites are dot­ted along the river bank with plenty of space be­tween them. There are no fa­cil­i­ties and camp­ing fees do ap­ply.

The best time to visit the Red Cen­tre is from April through to the end of Oc­to­ber.

The Alice Springs Desert Park is well worth a look if you have a half or a full day to spare.

See: www.al­ice­springs­de­sert­park.com.au

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