So you’ve made it to Wilpena Pound, the great unknown icon of the Flinders Ranges and feel like exploring the outback further? Try these five road trips, just a ‘short-ish’ drive from Wilpena Pound Resort (estimated kilometres from the resort in brackets)…
1. Blinman (63 kilometres)
Head to old copper mining town Blinman to refresh and feed yourself at the historic North Blinman Hotel (circa 1869). Maybe try a tour of the old copper mines and you can arrange scenic flights over Lake Eyre or Wilpena Pund from here too.
2. Brachina and Bunyeroo gorges (130 kilometres)
Explore the geological masterpieces of Brachina and Bunyeroo gorges, which also shelter the yellow-footed rock wallabies. Wilpena Pound Resort offers a great guided tour here. The (unsealed) roads are rough so if you’re going to try it yourself, make sure you have a good 4WD and know how to use it!
3. Parachilna’s Prairie Hotel (145 kilometres, shorter via unsealed roads)
Feast at the town of Parachilna’s greatest icon, the Prairie Hotel – the food is seriously good and is made with plenty of native ingredients. Also browse the indigenous and modern Australian art dotted around the restaurant and guest lounge, but mostly just drink in the outback atmosphere.
4. Arkaroola Wilderness Sanctuary (212 kilometres)
Head up to the Arkaroola Wilderness Sanctuary for the ‘Ridgetop Tour’ of some of the most amazing outback landscape in existence. Plenty of other outdoor activities including a waterhole tour to get your best chance of seeing wildlife and astronomy sessions gazing into the outback sky.
5. Lake Eyre (320 kilometres and beyond)
Cross your fingers for some water in the giant salt lake, because you won’t be this close to Lake Eyre too many times in your life. (This one’s so much more than a day trip.) The prime to base yourself is Marree or go further afield to William but bring your 4WD, maps and plan ahead – this is the half-way point for the Oodnadatta Track.