Flinders Ranges
Aus flinders range villa nature view partner stays very comfortable
Places - Flinders Ranges
Au arkaba flinders ranges south australia discoverpage regions
Flinders Ranges
Aus flinders range villa nature view partner stays very comfortable
Places - Flinders Ranges
Au arkaba flinders ranges south australia discoverpage regions
Australia's most accessible Outback

Flinders Ranges National Park

Discover Australia’s most accessible Outback, Flinders Ranges. Located just a five-hour drive from Adelaide in South Australia, stretching over 400 kilometres. Marvel at geographical wonders, deep red rock gorges, deserted plains and ancient rocky landscapes. Fly over Wilpena Pound, a natural amphitheatre. Explore wide open roads, red dirt and big stations in your 4WD. Watch the dramatic change of colours of the ranges during sunset. This is the ultimate Outback experience at your doorstep.

Where should you visit Flinders Ranges National Park?

Welcome to Flinders Ranges National Park

The Flinders Ranges are South Australia's largest mountain range. Its ancient rock forms a natural barrier to the desert landscape that stretches beyond the red peaks, green and yellow hills, plains and valleys. After rainfall, particularly during Spring, countless wildflowers cover the landscape in Flinders Ranges National Park. Numerous wild animals and colourful bird species also feel at home in this nature reserve. The most famous landmark of the park is Wilpena Pound, a natural amphitheatre or mountains.

Enjoy vast views expanding across the Outback
© Michael Skopal Unsplash
At sunset, the landscape is covered in a golden glow great for photography

Wilpena Pound (Ikara)

Wilpena Pound is a naturally formed amphitheatre consisting of a huge mountain range. Its magnificent sight makes it incredibly popular with tourists, meaning it can get very busy. Fortunately, the Flinders Ranges are large enough for everyone to enjoy a slice of it by themselves in other places.

Known in Adnyamathanha as Ikara, meaning meeting place, Wilpena Pound is of great cultural and religious significance to the Indigenous people. Therefore, walking to the very top of St Mary's Peak is not permitted. Instead, stop at Tanderra Saddle, which also offers spectacular views.

One of the best ways to see Wilpena Pound is from the air, when you can enjoy a birds-eye view of the crate-lookalike natural landmark.

Helicopter view Flinders Ranges | Australia holiday
Take in breathtaking views from up above in a thrilling helicopter ride
After an exciting day, retreat to your own private sanctuary at Wilpena Pound Resort

Indigenous culture

The extraordinary landscape of the Flinders Ranges is 800 million years old and has been home to Adnyamathanha people for tens of thousands of years. Adnyamathanha means 'hill or rock people'. Recognised as the traditional owners, they play an active role in park management together with the Australian Government.

The Flinders Ranges hold a strong cultural significance to them and are featured in traditional stories and legends. Proof of this can be found at Sacred Canyon and Arkaroo Rock.

Get off the beaten track by 4WD
Join an Indigenous guide on a tour around Wilpena Pound

Arkaroo Rock

Charcoal and ochre paintings probably more than 6000 years old are hidden under a huge rock. These weren't discovered by Europeans until 1957 and tell the creation story of Ikara (Wilpena Pound). The name of the rock comes from the name given to the petrified serpents who later became the mountains of Ikara. The site is located about 17 kilometres from Wilpena Pound and can be reached on a self-guided tour.

Sacred Canyon

Sacred Canyon is located roughly 19 kilometres from Wilpena Pound. The site is only accessible with an Adnyamathanha guide booked through Wilpena Pound Resort. It is asked that you do not touch the engravings. These are possibly 30 to 40 thousand years old and they are directly on the rock. Unfortunately, the origins of the art are unknown to the local Adnyamathanha people. The content of the story that it likely tells is lost.

Spot wallabies and other wildlife
Discover unique plant species that survive the arid climate
© Megan Clark Unsplash

Things to see and do in the Flinders Ranges

The Flinders Ranges offer the ideal backdrop for an outback adventure in Australia. Hiking, mountain biking, 4x4 touring, wildlife watching and campfire star counting are all available here, a five-hour drive north of Adelaide. In short, plenty to see.

Bushwalking

Bushwalking is a must in Flinders Ranges, preferably with an Aboriginal guide. The Adnyamathanha people are the original inhabitants of this region and are therefore culturally linked to the landscape. Their knowledge will make your tour an unforgettable experience.

Heysen trail

The Heysen Trail is one of the world’s great walking trails and the longest dedicated walking trail in Australia. The 1200 kilometre trail runs from Parachilna Gorge in the Flinders Ranges via the Adelaide Hills to Cape Jervis on the Fleurieu Peninsula. The trail provides something for every walker, from a short stroll along different sections of the trail to a 60-day hike along its entire length.

Discover the ranges by foot, one of the best ways to explore the park

Embark on an adventure in a 4x4 jeep

In addition to hiking, Flinders Ranges also offers mountain biking or driving a four-wheel drive jeep. As you drive, explore the Bunyeroo Gorge and Brachina Gorge, deep in the heart of the Flinders Ranges. During the trip, you will see how diverse the ancient landscape is and be able to spot all kinds of wildlife. Many excellent designated picnic spots are available through both gorges.

Be enchanted by the surroundings and drive up one of the mountain slopes at sunset. Here you can enjoy a glass of wine with appetisers as you watch the sun go down behind the mountains, bathing the landscape in warm tones.

Join a guided 4x4 tour for the best Outback experience
© TravelEssence
Stop at the many lookouts for amazing views

Bunyeroo Gorge

Bunyeroo Gorge is one of the main gorges and the drive gives spectacular views. A parks pass is required to enter, which can be purchased from the Wilpena Visitor Information Centre. Along the drive, a variety of wildlife including kangaroos and wallaroos can be seen. A number of walking trails are situated in the Bunyeroo Gorge area and the Heysen Trail also passes through the gorge.

Brachina Gorge

There is a chance to pull off of the trail and watch the wallabies move across the rocky outcrops or bask in the afternoon sun. The animals in Brachina Gorge form part of the largest population of Yellow-Footed Rock Wallabies in Australia, with an estimated population of 2000 in the Flinders Ranges.

Get your own 4x4 and venture deep into the Outback
© South Australian Tourism Commission
Dirt roads are common in Flinders Ranges National Park
© Megan Clark Unsplash

Parachilna Gorge

Touring Parachilna Gorge is one of the best day trips in the Flinders Ranges. Besides the gorge, you’ll see some amazing lookouts, explore the town of Blinman and visit the iconic Prairie Hotel. Parachilna Gorge Road between Blinman and Parachilna is 32 kilometres long and leads you through one of the most scenic gorges in Outback South Australia. The change in scenery is dramatic.

The first half of the Parachilna Gorge Road drive is on a good dirt road. The scenery is great, with ranges, strikingly shaped, and coloured rocks around every corner. The last third of the drive is a little rougher. More often it feels like you are driving along dry creek channels than on dirt road. Through the gorge, you drive between tall rock faces and river red gum-lined overflows.

Once you leave the Flinders Ranges and arrive on the vast plains of the Australian Outback it seems you're in a different world. Get out of the car, and enjoy the beautiful landscapes. This is also where the Hensley Trail begins (or ends).

Enjoy vast views on top of the green hills of the Flinders Ranges
© Rowena Shaw Unsplash
Encounter emus crossing the road on your way to Flinders Ranges

Flora and fauna in Flinders Ranges

Animal lovers will definitely get their money's worth here! Kangaroos, emus and feisty pink galahs (a type of parrot) will abound in the Flinders Ranges. If you're lucky, you might even catch a glimpse of a rare Yellow-Footed Rock Wallaby.

The Cazneaux Tree

The Cazneaux Tree, also known as Cazneaux's Tree, is a Eucalyptus camaldulensis or river red gum that was made famous by the photographer Harold Cazneaux. It is located on the west side of the Flingers Ranges Way, about 3 kilometres north-east of the Wilpena Pound Resort. The tree was listed by the National Trust of South Australia. With a height of 29 metres (95 ft) and a circumference at the base of 11.4 metres (37 ft) the tree dominates the otherwise flat arid plateau composed primarily of grasslands.

Stand in the shade of the famous Cazneaux Tree
© Ashley Trethowan - Unsplash

Best time to visit Flinders Ranges National Park

The Flinders Ranges are best visited during the cooler months (April to October). At this time of year you can enjoy mild temperatures ideal for bushwalking. During the warmer months it is not uncommon for temperatures to soar above 40 degrees Celsius. This means that many longer trails are closed during the summer (December to February)

Where to stay?

Make your trip extra special by experiencing a unique stay in Flinders Ranges National Park and beyond. Your travel specialist will match you up with our hand-selected accommodation that suits your wants and needs. A journey where your accommodation is an experience in itself.

Experience the vastness of the Australian Outback during your stay at Wilpena Pound Resort

The Wilpena Pound Resort, a major source of accommodation, is jointly owned by the Adnyamathanha people. This Aussie gem has all the ingredients to discover the rawness of the outback lifestyle. Experience the vastness of the Australian Outback during your stay by going on a 4WD guided tour. Or go on guided Aboriginal cultural walks, nature and bush walks or scenic flights over Wilpena Pound and the Flinders Ranges.

Immerse yourself in nature at Wilpena Pound Resort
Wake up to emus strolling in your backyard at Wilpena Pound Resort
© Wilpena Pound Resort

Immerse yourself in a wild bush story during your stay at Arkaba

Nestled in the landscape of Flinders Range, a sheep farm set on 59,305 acres, dating back to 1850. The accommodation was fully restored in 2009, preserving its historic character and charm.

You will stay in one of the five guest rooms, each named after the first explorers of Flinders Ranges and the owners of Arkaba. Your room features Rosie Woodford-Ganf art, air-conditioning, a bathroom, and a veranda.

In the immediate vicinity, you can take long walks and visit the crescent-shaped rock formation of Wilpena Pound. During your stay, all of your meals, beverages, and daily-guided activities are included. The expert field guides will tell you about the geological history, flora and fauna, and pastoral heritage of this region during several 4WD tours and guided walks.

Australia holiday house
Stay at a luxury homestead located in the Flinders Ranges
A dining room table set outside in the evening
Dine in style with the Australian outback as your backdrop

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  • 30 years of experience in travel to Australia
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At TravelEssence, we specialise in crafting custom-made holidays that take you off the beaten path and create memories to last a lifetime. We believe in connecting with the heart and soul of a place, introducing you to the locals who call it home. Engage in conversations with fascinating individuals who will share their stories, traditions, and way of life, leaving an indelible mark on your journey.