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Forums » Australia & the South Pacific » Is Alice Springs Worth Visiting?

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Droid

Is Alice Springs Worth Visiting?

by Droid »

We thought we'd have to go there to see Uluru but I've just discovered there are direct flights to Uluru now, so we're thinking about taking it off the itinerary altogether. Should we? Or is it interesting. Or conversely should we add more time in and around Sydney? Right now, we're doing 3 days Sydney, 2 days Uluru and 4 days on the Gold Coast. Still in the planning stages though, and I am hoping to get another 2 days or so off from work (we'll see).

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rwhansen

RE: Is Alice Springs Worth Visiting?

by rwhansen »

Australia is a large, vast, wonderful country and unless you spend time in the interior, you really won't understand how unique it is.  The coastal cities are beautiful, but in many ways they are not much different than coastal cities in other countries.

We toured Australia with a tour company and I don't know how accessible the experiences we enjoyed in Alice Springs are to those not on an organized tour.  They included the Royal Flying Doctor Service, the School of the Air, the old Telegraph Station, Desert Park and a wonderful evening with an Outback Barbecue.  Even the long ride by motor coach between Alice Springs and Uluru, with a stop at a Camel Farm, contributed to our experience and understanding of this amazing country.

Ayers Rock, along with the Sydney Opera House and bridge, are country icons and wonderful to see.  Learning about Australian aborigines and their culture in the shadow of the sacred rock was certainly interesting.  But much of that is in the past.  How they deliver medical service and education in the vast interior over long distances, and life on a ranch in the outback, truly contribute to your understanding of this wonderful country.

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mquartz

RE: Is Alice Springs Worth Visiting?

by mquartz »

You can certainly fly into Uluru and fly right out again. But as rwhansen says, that won't give you a sense of that part of the land and culture and historical context. Too rushed, going too far for too short a time. It would be like flying into Yellowstone, looking at Old Faithful, maybe at a bison or two, having a BBQ dinner of bison meat and flying out the next day.

Yes, it's possible, but then so are many things, but possible does not really mean worthwhile. Just imho.

Skip the Gold Coast - I'm sure you can get to beaches with concrete-and-glass highrises behind the sand, and too many chain fast-food restaurants, much closer to home. Nothing special there, actually quite tacky.

Add a couple of days to "The Alice", and a couple of days to Sydney. Take the Manly ferry, walk along The Corso to the open ocean beach, swim between the flags for safety - just as nice as any Gold Coast beach.

Or take the train to Bondi Junction and the bus down to the iconic Bondi Beach, then do the coastal walk down to Tamarama and Bronte and Clovelly and Coogee beaches, take a dip at each beach, now that's good healthy fun!

Enjoy! 

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rwhansen

RE: Is Alice Springs Worth Visiting?

by rwhansen »

mquartz - I love your Yellowstone analogy.  It is perfect!

Droid - I would also consider going to Cairns for the Great Barrier Reef and nearby Port Douglas.

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