Posts Tagged ‘Alice Springs’

The Red Centre – More Life Here Than You Might Think

Alice Springs has a history that goes back for several millennia. The Aborigines have been here since they believe life began and tell the story of the creation of the area.

Their ancestors moved across the barren land (the desert), hunting, camping, fighting, and loving and in doing so, created and shaped the featureless landscape. They moved from Dreams to actions and made the creatures and plants of the area.

They moved on to creating the sky and the humans with tribes and clans. Once all was made the ancestors grew tired and retired to the sky, the earth, the clouds, and the creatures to live within all they created.

The Landscape and The Climate1531838_732566033430183_8240421006409687889_n

Desert-like but great beauty, the Red Heart of Australia is at Uluru-Ayer’s Rock and Alice Springs. The temperatures are warm to hot during the summer and dry, with little rain. Red rocks upon blue skies make for awesome pictures and beautiful night skies. Imagine campfires and listening to the wind tells its stories of days ago.

Insects, Lizards, and Fish Plus Kangaroos and Wallabies

Just like other deserts in other parts of the world, there is only so much water and plants to sustain the creatures of the desert. Many of the creatures are small; the insects feed the birds and the lizards. Reptiles are bumpy so not to be eaten. Fish eggs lie dormant until the rains come.

People come to see the larger creatures of kangaroos, wallabies, and emus. However, if they listen and watch they might hear the howl of a dingo, the song of budgerigars (small parrots), or the penetrating whistling cry of the kite.

Plants Nourish and Stabilize the Landscape 

Spinifex is a plant similar to other desert plants, which seem to have no purpose. They are not tasty to any creatures except termites, they are tough and spiky if you step on them, and they contribute nothing to the soil. However, these grasses hold the sands in place so that the desert does not become like the Sahara. And if you watch them carefully, you might find a desert lizard or small Spinifex Hopping-mouse peeking out.

Desert Bloodwood Trees adapt to the desert, bloom in the cooler months between April through October, and when times are tough, and drought is near, they will drop a branch so that the rest of the tree can live. 

Corkwood Trees have cream colored flowers, which emus seem to love and get drunk on the fermenting nectar. Imagine what that would be like to see Emus drunk on flowers?

The People of Alice Springs

The Arrernte (tribe) Aboriginal people have been in the area of Alice Springs for thousands of years, with evidence of occupation of over 30,000 years. They believe their ancestors created the landscape and are part of the environment. Their art work, culture, and community works bring in the tourists to Alice Springs. 

When the railroad came through, they found Alice Springs was almost the halfway point through the country. It was an active staging base during World War II and the United States Air Force Detachment 421, came in 1954. Americans have lived continuously in the area since that time.

There are also other small immigrant communities of Vietnamese, Chinese, Thai, and Indian ethnic groups, who opened up different restaurants in Alice Springs. Other folks who come through the area because of events in Alice Springs such as the desert races, cultural events, and Art Shows.

It is said that people come here to visit and never want to leave. Alice Springs is that enjoyable, the landscape stunning, and the art renowned as the capital of Aboriginal art.

To find out more about Alice Springs and the surrounding area, Contact Us for more information.

Alice Springs, heart of the Red Centre

Alice Springs

Alice Springs started out life around 1872 with the completion of the Overland Telegraph Line between Adelaide and Darwin and then onto the United Kingdom. It was the site of a repeater station for the line that was built on the Todd River at an area they named Alice Springs. It must have been a wet year as the normally dry river had water in it and was mistakenly thought to be a permanent waterhole. They named it after the wife of Sir Charles Todd, ex Postmaster General of South Australia. The river was named after him.

Prior to European settlement the area was inhabited by the Arrernte Aboriginal people for more than 40,000 years and was referred to as Mparntwe. There were three distinct groups encompassing the Western, Eastern and Central Arrernte people and the area they inhabited included the East and West MacDonnell Ranges along with the area that is now Alice of which the Central Arrernte are the traditional owners.

Alice Springs is the largest town in Central Australia, or the Red Centre as its known, and the second largest city in the Northern Territory after Darwin. It has a population of approximately 26,000, a very cosmopolitan mix made up of Australian Aboriginal, Australian, English, Irish, Scottish, German, Italian, New Zealand and North American. Almost 18% were born outside Australia. There is the old saying that many people arrive in Alice Springs with the intention of passing through but end up making Alice their home. It has a very relaxed lifestyle, favourable climate and is blessed with beautiful ancient mountain ranges, waterholes, fauna and flora.