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Travelling to Kings Canyon

Not sure where to start when it comes to planning your journey through Australia’s Red Centre to Kings Canyon? We’ve got you covered. Remote outback travel can be daunting, so to help you plan, here’s everything you need to know to make the trip of a lifetime to Discovery Resorts - Kings Canyon. 

Getting here 

Kings Canyon is located in the very heart of the Red Centre, halfway between Uluru and Alice Springs. Either makes a great starting point for your journey, with incredible views, landscapes and photo opportunities along the way. 

Travelling from Alice Springs 

Alice Springs is not only a good place to start your trip through the Red Centre, it’s a fascinating destination in its own right. Spend a couple of days at Discovery Parks – Alice Springs to take in the sites and attractions including the Desert Wildlife Park, Old Telegraph Station and ANZAC Hill. Our tip? Nothing beats a hot air balloon ride over this part of the world! 

When you’re ready to hit the road you have a couple of options: 

  1. The Mereenie Loop Road (4WD and permit required - driving time 4-4.5 hours) 

Heading off from Alice, you’ll head towards Glen Helen and the Western MacDonnell Ranges. This is 133km (about 1.5 hours’ driving time) on a sealed road but note you’ll want a 4WD for later along this route. Interesting landmarks and stops along the way include Standley Chasm, Simpson’s Gap, and Ellery Creek Big Hole so plan for stops if you can. 

You have the option to break your journey up with a stay at Discovery Parks – Glen Helen

Onwards from Glen Helen you’ll head along the Mereenie Loop which is sealed for the first section then turns to gravel for the last 150km through to Kings. This leg will be slow going but worth the adventure, with incredible scenery and wildlife. Allow around 2.5-3 hour’s driving time and check the road conditions before you depart.

2. Stuart/Lasseter Highway (driving time 5 hours) 

Alternatively, and for those in 2WD vehicles, head south from Alice Spring on the Stuart Highway. It’s worth a stop at Erldunda to visit its quirky Roadhouse, and then it’s onto the Lasseter Highway through to Kings.  

READ ALSO: 15 ways to stay safe on your next road trip 

Travelling from Uluru (driving time 3 hours) 

Uluru is also a great starting place for your Red Centre holiday, with the iconic natural wonder sure to take your breath away. We recommend spending a few days exploring the magic of Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park, the many cultural tours on offer, and Bruce Munro’s awe-inspiring ‘Field of Light’ – a must-see NT attraction. 

If you’re heading to Kings Canyon from Uluru, travel time is about 3 hours via the Lasseter Highway and Luritja Road. There aren’t as many attractions along the journey as from Alice Springs, but Kings Creek Station (which offers property tours) and Kathleen Springs are definitely worth a look.  

READ ALSO: Artist Bruce Munro to light up Discovery Resorts - Kings Canyon in 2023 

Travelling without your own vehicle? 

For those who may be planning their Red Centre adventure without a personal vehicle, AATKings operate regular coach transfer services to and from Uluru and Alice Springs. For more information, or to book your transfer, visit the AATKings website or call 1300 228 546. 

READ ALSO: More about the Red Centre Way 

What to wear 

How to pack for an outback holiday is one of the questions we get asked most often. It’s important to dress to the conditions and to remember that the desert can get quite cool at night. 

As a guide, temperatures range from approximately 22 degrees Celsius in winter to approximately 35 degrees Celsius in summer. During winter, the early mornings and evenings can be very cold, crisp and clear, so remember to pack some warm clothing. Layers are best. 

In summer, daytime temperatures can exceed 40 degrees so make sure to pack light and breathable clothes, sun protection and a good hat. 

You will definitely need suitable walking shoes or hiking boots for the walking tracks in Watarrka National Park which include rocky escarpments, sandy paths and dedicated walking trails. There is also a swimming pool at Discovery Resorts - Kings Canyon, so don't forget pack your swimwear for cooling off at the end of a big day’s adventures. 

Travel Insurance 

We highly recommend travel insurance. Our remote and unique locations make for the perfect holiday destination. It is important to note that travelling to paradise comes with risks that are out of our control, and yours. For this reason, we highly recommend that all of our guests purchase travel insurance prior to travelling. 

Please take the time to review your travel insurance policy to ensure that you are covered in the unlikely event that your travel plans are disrupted due to weather or acts of God.