Things to Do in Alice Springs for Families

Alice Springs Skyline

Alice Springs, a quaint town in the heart of Australia’s Red Centre, is the perfect place for a family vacation. With plenty of outdoor activities, wildlife encounters, and cultural experiences, there’s something for children of all ages. Continue reading as we list the best family-friendly things to do in Alice Springs.

Alice Springs for Families

Surrounded by breathtaking landscapes and rich cultural heritage, charming Alice Springs offers an array of experiences tailored for families. From thrilling outdoor escapades to engaging wildlife encounters and immersive cultural experiences, Alice Springs promises a memorable vacation for visitors of all ages. Prepare to create lifelong memories as you explore the wonders of this unique destination with your loved ones.

Alice Springs Desert Park

Alice Springs Desert Park, just ten minutes drive from the town centre, is a popular destination to visit with children. The park consists of three native habitats, each home to unique local plants and wildlife.

From awe-inspiring free-flying bird demonstrations to captivating dingo shows and after-dark tours to see the nocturnal animals, there’s something for everyone.

Kids even get the chance to wander among mobs of red kangaroos, an up-close experience with the iconic Aussie marsupials that they will never forget.

Learn more about the ideal season to visit Desert Park in our article on the Best Times To Visit Alice Springs

Nocturnal tour at Desert Park

Olive Pink Botanic Garden

Olive Pink Botanic Garden—named after a famous anthropologist and Aboriginal rights advocate—is a must-visit for families.

Australia's only arid zone botanic garden, it features over 500 species of plants that thrive in dry, desert conditions.

This is a true wonderland for kids, who can roam around among the iconic Ghost Gum trees, marvel at the bright Sturt's Desert Pea flowers, and catch a glimpse of hill kangaroos leisurely grazing in the gardens. 

Larapinta Trail

Larapinta Trail, spanning 223 km (138 mi) along the West MacDonnell Ranges, offers some of the best hikes in Australia.

The trail is divided into 12 shorter sections of various degrees of difficulty, allowing you to choose the walk that suits all members of the family. And what better way to bond with your children than a combined hiking and camping trip?

You’re in for a treat with over 40 camping sites along the trail, most offering picnic tables, a water supply, and even free gas barbecues.

For more family-friendly walks, check our guide to the Best Hikes in Alice Springs.

Larapinta Trail

Alice Springs Reptile Centre

If you’re a family of reptile lovers, the Reptile Centre is sure to feature in your top favourite places in Alice Springs. The sanctuary houses more than 100 reptiles, many of which were rescued from the areas slated for controlled burns to prevent bushfires.

Prepare to be amazed by the centre’s diverse inhabitants, including thorny devils, frilled neck lizards, goannas, and venomous snakes, alongside Terry, the imposing 3.3 m (130 in) long saltwater crocodile.

After the daily reptile show, kids and adults will get a chance to pet a blue-tongue lizard and, those who are brave enough, wrap a python around their shoulders.

The Kangaroo Sanctuary

Alice Springs Kangaroo Sanctuary is a rescue centre founded by Chris Brolga Barnes, known from National Geographic’s Kangaroo Dundee documentary.

Stretching over 188 acres (76 hectares), the sanctuary is home to 25 Central Australia’s native red kangaroos. During the daily sunset tour, you can observe these magnificent creatures as they emerge to graze in the cool evening air.

Children seven years and older get a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to carry joeys in their arms while exploring the sanctuary. Just remember that these tours are extremely popular, so make sure to book early.

Frontier Camel Farm

The Frontier Camel Farm, also known as Pyndan Camel Tracks, is a popular Alice Springs attraction for families with children.

Start your visit at the museum filled with camel riding gear, photographs, and other memorabilia, where you can learn more about the origin of camels in Australia and their quirky personalities.

But the real fun begins when you join a one-hour-long camel ride for an up-close encounter with these gentle giants. Rides are available year-round and suitable for children of all ages.

Old Telegraph Station

Alice Springs Telegraph Station was established in 1872 as part of the Overland Telegraph Line that connected Australia with the rest of the world.

Between March and November, you can join daily guided tours to learn more about the history and challenges of telegraph communication. Meanwhile, kids will be kept busy completing an educational quiz, with a prize waiting for them at the cafe.

Located within a natural reserve with the backdrop of the MacDonnell Ranges, the Telegraph Station also provides an idyllic setting for picnics and spotting wildlife. 

Get more inspiration on activities in Alice Springs in our guide to the Best Things to Do in Alice Springs in Winter.

Telegraph Station

Royal Flying Doctor Service (RFDS) Museum

This immersive museum offers a unique glimpse into the delivery of medical services to the Australian Outback. Learn more about what it’s like to work for the RFDS, see old medical instruments, and follow planes in transit on a real-time map.

But the real highlight for the kids is boarding a full-size replica aeroplane and buckling up for a virtual reality adventure. They get to experience what it’s like to be a patient in the care of the RFDS and flying over the Australian desert.

School of the Air

The Alice Springs School of the Air, dubbed the “World’s Largest Classroom,” has been providing education to children living in remote areas of Central Australia since 1951.

Originally relying on radio broadcasting lessons, today the school uses cutting-edge virtual classroom technology. School-aged kids will be delighted to compare this unique remote education system to their own school experience through films, presentations, and even participating in live classes.

Every ticket sold goes back into supporting the School of the Air. 

Megafauna Central

On scorching summer days, Alice Springs Megafauna Central offers a cool getaway for a family day out. Step back into the past and learn more about life in Central Australia millions of years ago.

Get up close with the fossils of Dromornis stirtoni, the largest and heaviest bird to have ever lived, and Baru Sp., a giant crocodile from the Miocene era. And that's not all—there are plenty of interactive activities for kids, including the chance to see palaeontologists at work in their labs. 

For more things to do on hot summer days in the Red Centre, read our article on the Best Things to Do in Alice Springs in Summer.

National Road Transport Museum

For the little ones who can't get enough of fire trucks and trains, a visit to the National Road Transport Museum on the outskirts of Alice Springs is an unforgettable experience.

Children get to sit behind the wheel of vintage fire engines, marvel at Australia's pioneering road trains, and explore sculptures made from old car parts.

If you’re visiting Alice Springs in August, don’t miss the annual Australian Festival of Transport held at the museum and featuring family-friendly activities, races, and the traditional Aussie barbecue under the stars. 

Recommended Alice Springs Itineraries for Families

Are you ready to make Alice Springs your next family getaway? FLT’s Western Australia itineraries, including Alice Springs Self Drive Loop and Alice Springs to Darwin Road Trip, are packed with things to see and do in the Northern Territory and the Red Centre. If you prefer to have a customised itinerary, you can get in touch with our Australia Travel Specialists who will create a perfect trip just for you.

Irma Vuckovic
Irma Vuckovic
: 8 Apr 2024 (Last updated: 8 Apr 2024)

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