LARAPINTA TRAIL OVERVIEW
The Larapinta Trail is one of the great long distance walking trails in Australia. Traversing the ranges west of Alice Springs, the challenging 223km-long trek takes hikers across some of the most spectacular landscapes in the Northern Territory.
The Larapinta is divided into 12 sections with varying difficulty, terrain and distances. It crosses some of the more remote parts of the West MacDonnell National Park, leading hikers to many of the area’s highlights, as well as less accessible viewpoints, gorges and ridgelines. Traditionally, starting from Alice Springs Telegraph Station and finishing over 220km later at the top of Mount Sonder or Rwetyepme, the fourth highest peak in the state, the trail can be completed in either direction.
With designated campgrounds at each trailhead as well as opportunities for wild camping on high ridges with panoramic views, it usually takes between 12 to 16 days to complete from end to end. However, many of the trailheads are vehicle accessible, allowing for shorter sections, day hikes and overnight walks for those short on time. While open for most of the year, it’s recommended that hikers complete the trail in the cooler and drier months from May to September.
The Larapinta is both spectacular and demanding, with the rocky, rugged, and often steep conditions being rewarded with breathtaking views of the mountain ranges and gorges. Despite requiring some planning and preparation, the adventure is made much more manageable with trailhead and campground facilities and trek support services.
Often considered one of the best multi-day trails in the country, the Larapinta Trail is a once in a lifetime experience to immerse yourself in some of the most awe-inspiring landscapes in the heart of Australia.