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  1. Australia
  2. Northern Territory
  3. Alice Springs
  4. MacDonnell Ranges

West MacDonnell Ranges 'Pool to Pool' Small Group Tour

Product ID: 166421
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Escape the steaming outback summer and beat the heat with the refreshing natural 'pools' of the West MacDonnell Ranges: Ellery Creek Big Hole, Ormiston Gorge, and Glen Helen. Relax in the spectacular National Park and learn from your passionate guide.
About this activity
Duration 8 hours
Printed or mobile voucher accepted
Instant confirmation
Live tour guide

Pickup included

Your Alice Springs accommodation.
Free cancellation up to 24 hours before activity starts

Select participants and date:



  • Explore the natural wonder of Simpsons Gap and its extraordinary wildlife
  • Enjoy a relaxing swim at Ellery Creek Big Hole, Ormiston Gorge, and Glen Helen
  • Feast on a delicious, European-style morning tea with coffee
  • Drive 2 Miles off-road to the Finke River
  • Relax in the comfort of a small group tour with maximum 10 passengers
Full description
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. 
  • Friendly and experienced tour guide
  • Modern, air-conditioned 4WD vehicle (10 seater)
  • Morning tea (coffee, tea, biscuits)
  • Fresh fruit, snacks
  • 600ml water bottle and extra water for the day
What’s Not Included
  • Lunch
  • Soft drinks, alcohol
Not suitable for
  • Children under 8 years

Prepare for the activity

Important information
What to bring
  • Sun hat
  • Swimwear
  • Towel
Know before you go
• This is a tour for people who want a relaxed day swimming in the beautiful waterholes in Central Australia
• Bring your swimwear and your towel
• Please advise if you have any medical conditions, allergies or food allergies/requirements
• Please be ready at least 15 minutes before your pick-up
• Please wear sturdy walking shoes
• Please bring sunscreen, hat and comfortable clothing, a camera
• 8 years old is the minimum age to participate to this tour. Parents/tutors are fully responsible for their kids.
Save up to 20%

From £53.30 £42.64 per person

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Organized by

Outback Elite Tours

Product ID: 166421