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About Alice Springs

Alice Springs



Alice Springs (ArrernteMparntwe) is the third largest town in the Northern Territory, Australia. Popularly known as "the Alice" or simply "Alice", Alice Springs is situated in the geographic centre of Australia near the southern border of the Northern Territory.

The site is known as Mparntwe to its original inhabitants, the Arrernte, who have lived in the Central Australian desert in and around what is now Alice Springs for thousands of years. "Alice" in the English language was named by surveyor W. W. Mills after Lady Alice Todd (née Alice Gillam Bell), wife of Sir Charles Todd. Alice Springs has a population of 28,605, which makes up 12.2 percent of the territory's population. Alice Springs is nearly equidistant from Adelaide, South Australia and Darwin.

The town straddles the usually dry Todd River on the northern side of the MacDonnell Ranges. The surrounding region is known as Central Australia, or the Red Centre, an arid environment consisting of several different deserts. In Alice Springs temperatures can vary dramatically with an average maximum temperature in summer of 35.6 °C (96.1 °F), and an average minimum temperature in winter of 5.1 °C (41.2 °F).




Alice Springs
Northern Territory


Alice Springs.jpg

The "Springs" that gave the town its name
Alice Springs is located in Northern Territory
Alice Springs
Alice Springs
Location in Northern Territory





 


Alice Springs Desert Park, Sand Drawing Aboriginal





 


Telegraph station





 

Geography



The region around Alice Springs is part of the Central Ranges xeric scrub area of dry scrubby grassland and includes the MacDonnell Ranges which run east and west of the city and contain a number of hiking trails and swimming holes such as Ormiston Gorge, Ormiston Gorge Creek, Red Bank Gorge and Glen Helen Gorge. The 223-kilometre (139 mi) long Larapinta Trail follows the West MacDonnell Ranges and is considered among the world's great walking experiences.

The Simpson Desert, south-east of Alice Springs is one of Australia's great wilderness areas containing giant red sand dunes and interesting rock formations such as Chambers Pillar and Rainbow Valley.






Panorama of Alice Springs





 

Economy




This view shows the transport links passing through Heavitree Gap in the MacDonnell Rangesfound adjacent to the town





 



Flying Doctor
 dispatch service



 

Alice Springs began as a service town to the pastoral industry that first came to the region. The introduction of the rail line increased its economy and productivity. Today the town services a region of 546,046 square kilometres (210,830 sq mi) and a regional population of 38,749. The region includes a number of mining and pastoral communities, the Joint Defence Space Research Facility at Pine Gap and tourist attractions at Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park,Watarrka National Park and the MacDonnell Ranges.

The largest employer in Alice Springs is the Northern Territory Government, with 7.5% of employed people working in government administration, 6.6% in school education, and 3.7% in the Alice Springs Hospital. The economy of Alice is somewhat reliant on domestic and international tourism, with 3.8% of its workforce employed providing accommodation.

As well as Territory Discoveries, all major tour companies have a base in Alice Springs, including AAT Kings & APT, as well as numerous local operators, including Emu Run Tours, Anganu Waai! tours, Alice Wanderer and Wayoutback Desert Safaris, the only locally based Advanced Ecotourism Accredited operator.

Alice is home to numerous hotels, from the 4.5-star Lasseters Hotel Casino , to the backpacker standard Toddies Resort. Also, there are several caravan parks for the driving visitor.

A dispatch centre for the Royal Flying Doctor Service of Australia operates here.

 

 

 

Recreation and culture

 


 

Social characteristics

 

Alice Springs has been referred to as the lesbian capital of Australia. Analysis of same gender dual occupancy and household ownership figures from the Australian Census appears to substantiate the claim. The large population is attributable to the Pine Gap Women's Peace Protest of 1983 which created a critical population mass and continually self-sustaining lesbian community


Events and festivals


The town's focal point, the Todd Mall, hosts a number of Aboriginal art galleries and community events. Alice Springs' desert lifestyle has inspired several unique events, such as the Alice Desert Festival Camel Cup, the Henley-on-Todd RegattaBeanie Festival and the Finke Desert Race. The Finke Desert Race is some 400 kilometres (250 mi) south of Alice Springs in theSimpson Desert.


 
 

Camel Cup, Alice Springs



 

Alice Springs Desert Park, Bush Tucker
 
 

Parks and gardens

Alice Springs Desert Park 

Olive Pink Botanic Garden

Alice Springs Reptile Centre






SOURCE: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alice_Springs

 
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