Wilpena Pound Resort Flinders Ranges South Australia
The Warm Heart of South Australia's Flinders Ranges
Amidst the vibrant colours of the 800
million-year-old quartzite and limestone outcrop that is the
Flinders Ranges lies Wilpena Pound, a natural amphitheatre 17km
long and 7km wide. Shaped by the weathering and uplifting of land
over time, this place has strong significance to the indigenous
Located just to its east, you’ll discover Wilpena Pound Resort, the perfect base for exploring this diverse and fascinating region.
Wilpena Pound Resort is built on the banks of Wilpena Creek
just outside an entrance to Wilpena Pound. In this natural bush
setting, native flora and fauna abound. With just 60 rooms, the
resort blends well into the landscape and provides comfortable
accommodation for exploring the Flinders Ranges.
Upon arrival, the resort swimming pool appears as a welcome oasis in the bush. It is solar heated and enjoyed by guests all year round.
Reception is open from 7.30am – 7.30pm to attend to guests’ needs. The Visitors Centre, open daily from 8.00am – 5.00pm, has a wide choice of maps and information about the area. Tours and activities can be booked here.
The Restaurant is open for breakfast and dinner daily with a variety of dining options on offer. Choose from a light continental to a hearty country breakfast. In the evening, the menu offers a choice of modern Australian cuisine with a touch of the Outback.
Poddy Dodger’s Bar is open from midday to late daily for drinks and refreshments, serving bistro-style meals and light snacks during the day. In the evenings, this is the hub of the resort where tales of the day’s activities are shared.
Accommodation at the resort is in four different room types, all of which were refurbished in 2009 to a 4-star category. Brachina and Aroona Rooms suit individuals and couples travelling together, whereas the Heysen and Edeowie Suites are larger with more extensive facilities suitable for families or people needing a little more space than a traditional hotel room.
The table below
provides a summary of features and facilities in the each room type
Activities and experiences
For years the Flinders Ranges have drawn visitors from far and
wide. The appeal is the unique beauty of this landscape with its
indigenous history, ancient geological formations, rich colours
and textures, open spaces, clear air and abundant wildlife. The
Flinders Ranges are home to nearly half of South Australia’s 3100
plant species, more than 120 bird, 86 reptile and 20 mammal
species. The vibrant colours of the 800 million-year-old quartzite
and limestone outcrop that is the Flinders are truly spectacular.
At the heart of all this is Wilpena Pound, a natural amphitheatre 17km long and 7km wide shaped by the weathering and uplifting of land over time. Ikara, as the local Adnyamathana people call it, is a significant place of many sacred Aboriginal rituals, and their Dreamtime stories tell of its creation by huge serpents. From the rich indigenous history to the stories of the first European farmers to the region, this place has a diverse and fascinating history of human interaction with the landscape.
Visitors to Wilpena Pound Resort have access to many tours and activities to explore the extraordinary landscape. From scenic flights, walking trails, 4WD tours and mountain bike hire, there are plenty of ways to explore the region.
Much of the Flinders can be accessed by road. Brachina Gorge is one of the most popular and spectacular destinations for visitors; its exposed rock walls have evidence of the evolution of this area over thousands of years and is today shelter to the rare and endangered yellow-footed rock wallaby. There are several vantage points offering views over the Flinders, such as Huck’s Lookout that has an excellent view of Wilpena Pound, and Stokes Hill Lookout that offers a spectacular panorama of the surrounding ranges.
4WD tours depart daily from the resort. These include your guide and morning or afternoon tea.
Mountain Tops Spectacular
An exciting morning tour that takes you on a journey through a working sheep station where you will see traverse mountain ranges affording magnificent views of Wilpena Pound and the Elder Ranges. This is truly a great 4WD experience.
Corridors through time
This afternoon tour takes you on a geological journey through the Flinders Ranges National Park. You will enjoy the beauty of Brachina and Bunyeroo Gorges and the Aroona Valley, see views that have inspired artists such as Sir Hans Heysen and observe the wildlife in their natural habitat. If you’re lucky, you might catch a glimpse of the rare yellow-footed rock wallaby.
A great way to see Wilpena Pound is from the air. This puts it into perspective and enables you to appreciate the vastness of its formation. Scenic flights operate daily from the Wilpena Pound Airstrip.
Flight 1: 20 Minute Flight
Wilpena Pound, Arkaba Station, Elder Range, Edeowie Gorge, Lake Torrens, Heysen Range, St. Mary’s Peak and the Pound Gap.
Flight 2: 30 Minute Flight
Wilpena Pound, Arkaba Station, Elder Range, Edeowie Gorge, Heysen Range, Lake Torrens, Bunyeroo Gorge, Brachina Gorge, The Backbone of the Flinders, St Mary’s Peak and the Pound Gap.
Longer flights – available on request
Note - A fuel levy may be applied to the above prices if an increase in fuel costs deems it necessary
Mountain bike hire
Several trails around the resort are suitable for cycling. Mountain bikes are available for hire from the Visitor’s Centre on a full- or half-day basis. You could ride part of the famous Mawson Trail, which runs from Adelaide to Blinman passing behind the resort campground, or ride to Old Wilpena Station before taking the self-guided walking trail around the old buildings.
Walking is one of the most popular activities in the Flinders Ranges and there are many trails allowing for varying levels of fitness and experience. These range from the leisurely hour-long Drought Busters Trail highlighting native plants to full-day return walks to St. Mary Peak, the highest point in the Flinders, or Edeowie Gorge and Glenora Falls. The famous Heysen Trail stretching from Parachilna to Cape Jervis, south of Adelaide, also passes through this region.
Pick up a Flinders Ranges bushwalking map and trail brochure at the Visitor Information Centre or ask about one of our guided tours.
Old Wilpena Homestead
(Duration: 2 hours - Walking distance: 3 kms - easy)
Nestled between the ABC Range and the northern ramparts of Wilpena Pound is Old Wilpena Station, one of South Australia’s oldest and best preserved pastoral settlements. Walk along Wilpena Creek past magnificent stands of river red gums with stunning views of the Pound wall in the distance. As you pass through the station gate you’ll step back 150 years to the early days of pastoral runs.
Explore a world of improvisation, dogged with self-sufficiency
and a powerful instinct for survival. Learn how the land changed
with European settlement and how present-day pastoralists and park
managers are dealing with those changes. Enjoy a cuppa and cake on
the verandah of the old Homestead or “Government House” as the
early homesteads were known.
Champagne and Shadows
(Duration: Approx 2 hours - Walking distance 1.5kms - easy)
A leisurely afternoon walk to Old Wilpena Station provides the best there is to see at this outstanding heritage-listed site. Described in 1856 as “the prettiest place in the Far North”, Old Wilpena Station will not disappoint. Follow the Interpretive trail with your guide and explore the evocative interiors of the outbuildings, among the oldest and best preserved of their type in South Australia.
Be silenced by the extraordinary beauty of the great river red
gums backlit by the receding sun. As the evening approaches,
gather near the Homestead and enjoy the magical last light of the
day with a glass of bubbly and nibbles. A memorable afternoon walk
to one of South Australia’s most charming heritage places.
(Duration: Approx 2 hours - Walking Distance: 2 kms - easy)
Red is the signature colour of inland Australia. Red sand, red soil and red rocks define more than half of the Australian continent. Join your guide for an exploration of the Flinders Ranges reds – red gums, red kangaroos, red sandstones and red sunsets. Marvel at the majestic red gums and discover why these giants are icons of the inland. As you watch them grazing in the late afternoon light, learn about the different species of kangaroos in the Wilpena area.
Ponder the awesome geological history of the region as you
watch the walls of Wilpena Pound change colour, warmed by the
dying sun. Over a glass of South Australian red, enjoy the special
charm of a Flinders sunset as it reduces the Pound wall to an
Guided Walk into Wilpena Pound
(Duration: Approx 2 hours - Walking distance: 2.5kms return - easy)
A leisurely walk along Wilpena Creek into Wilpena Pound and on to the Old Hills Homestead where you can learn about the hardships the Hills family had to face at the turn of the century. There is an optional hike up to Wangarra Hill lookout offering panoramic views of Wilpena Pound. Be silenced by the extraordinary beauty of the great river red gums as you nibble on cake and coffee by the Old Homestead.