West MacDonnell Ranges 'Pool to Pool' Small Group Tour
Summers in the Outback can get brutally hot, so beat the summer heat and cool off on a tour of this spectacular National Park. This small-group tour (with maximum 10 people) focusses on an itinerary designed perfectly for a hot summer. Make use of the amazing waterholes and river systems that the 'West Macs' has to offer. Leave Alice Springs at approximately at 8 am. First stop is for morning tea at Simpsons Gap. This gorgeous spot is popular with Alice Springs locals. Embark on a short, easy walk to a waterhole (sorry, no swimming but plenty of this later), rich in native wildlife. Follow the dry creek bed and massive River Red Gums to a dramatic gap in the range, featuring towering cliffs on either side. Keep your eyes out for the famous colony of adorable Black-footed Rock Wallabies.
Swimming is next at Ellery Creek Big Hole, the biggest and deepest waterhole in Central Australia. You’ll be amazed that this natural wonder exists in Outback Australia. A sandy beach lines this huge waterhole, offering superb swimming and sun baking amongst incredible scenery. Next stop is a visit to Ormiston Gorge - a must-see on any visit to the ‘West Macs’. The spectacular scenery features the soaring cliffs of an ancient mountain range, incredible rock formations, a string of beautiful waterholes leading to a picturesque sandy river bed lined by giant River Red Gums. Walk up to a stunning lookout, overlooking a beautiful swimming hole and the immense gorge. After the walk, cool off with a swim in this surprisingly big and deep permanent waterhole.
Nestled on the banks of the Finke River, against the sheer cliffs of the MacDonnell Ranges, historic Glen Helen Homestead is the perfect place to stop for lunch. Enjoy an a la carte lunch in the restaurant, or just cool off with a drink or an ice cream (not included in the tour price). Then take the short walk down a gorgeous waterhole for a swim next to the striking Glen Helen Gorge. Next, drive up to the magnificent Mt Sonder Lookout. This 360⁰ vista looks out towards the imposing Mt Sonder and over a beautifully scenic part of the Finke River. Bring your camera as the view is a favourite spot for photographers and landscape artists. Switch into 4WD for a short off-road drive down to the Finke River for a refreshing swim or a relaxing break on the shady river bank. After your relaxing and enjoyable summer’s day in the West Macs you head back to Alice Springs and are dropped off at your accommodation at around 4:30pm.