Devils Marbles, Northern Territory
Author: Gracie Quinn Date Posted:21 April 2017
A geological marvel, a sacred Aboriginal site, and above all, a one-of-a-kind Outback destination, Devils Marbles Conservation Reserve is located about a hundred kilometres south of Northern Territory’s Tennant Creek, amid miles and miles of nothingness.
Average Winter Temp: 25°C
Average Summer Temp: 34°C
Traditionally inhabited by: Warumungu, Kaytetye, Alyawarra and Warlpiri people
Despite being in the middle of nowhere, it enjoys the position of one of Australia’s most famous travel destinations. The site is composed of multiple granite boulders, shaped by millions of years of erosion, and inseparably linked with the cultural and spiritual traditions of the Warumungu Aboriginal people.
The Devils Marbles are usually identified as two iconic boulders towering over their surroundings. However, the name actually refers to a huge assortment of granite boulders, scattered over an 1800 hectare expanse. Each boulder is characteristically different from the others, and ranges between 50cm and 6m in width. Together, these natural granite sculptures create a host of spectacular – even gravity defying – formations, lead to beautiful collages of sun and shade, and support an interesting range of flora and fauna. Rare species of plants and animals that you’ll find here include native rock figs, fairy martins and pygmy spiny-tailed goannas.
Explore the rugged and yet surreal beauty of the natural extravaganza that is the Devils Marbles Conservation Reserve. Watch the play of sunlight on the granite boulders as you chart your own course around the reserve. Pitch a tent at the camping ground and watch the setting sun colour the rocks in vivid red hues. Or drive through the reserve (which is dissected by the Stuart Highway) on your way to the other splendours of the Red Centre. No matter how you plan your trip, the Devils Marbles will remain etched in your memory forever.
Attractions & Activities:
Aboriginal History Tours
The Devils Marbles Conservation Reserve has its own bush camping area. Its location is perfect for catching the sunset and camping overnight, and only a nominal fee of $3.3 per person (honesty box collection) applies. However, your rig would have to be completely self-reliant. Other caravan parks in the area will ask for a bit of a drive, but will be equipped with more camping facilities.
Wycliffe Well Holiday Park
A refuelling station that doubles up as an interesting alien themed caravan park, Wycliffe Well Holiday Park offers to serve as an experience on its own. Located minutes away from Devils Marbles, this is the ideal choice for caravanning tourists who would prefer sites with camping infrastructure and amenities in place. This sprawling property has hundreds of caravan sites (both powered and unpowered) along with hot showers, a campers’ kitchen and BBQ area, laundry facilities, a games room, a swimming pool and a convenience store.
Management to be contacted for tariffs.
Tennant Creek Caravan Park
Tennant Creek, NT
Located on Stuart Highway a few minutes’ drive north of Devils Marbles, Tennant Creek Caravan Park is a popular accommodation option in the area. The pet-friendly property contains caravan sites as well as budget cabins, and welcomes large groups of tourists. Facilities include modern showers and toilets, a camp kitchen, a coin operated laundry unit, and a shaded saltwater pool.
$20/night for 2 persons, unpowered sites
$25/night for 2 persons, powered sites
($10 for every additional person; $5 per child. Cabins are also available from $60/night for 2 persons.)
Threeways Roadhouse and Tourist Park
Tennant Creek, NT
Located at the junction between Barkly and Stuart Highway, Threeways Roadhouse is a popular family-run fuelling station that doubles up as a caravan park. Offering shady caravan sites in a beautiful Outback setting, the property is also equipped with a swimming pool, a camper’s kitchen, a laundry block, and of course its famous restaurant and bar.
$24/night for 2 persons, unpowered sites
$32/night for 2 persons, powered sites
(Cabins and motel rooms of various sizes are also available.)
Free Camping / Low Cost Camping:
As already mentioned above, the Devils Marbles Conservation Reserve has its own low-budget camping ground (rate: $3.3 per person, honesty box collection), suitable for all sizes of self-reliant caravans and motorhomes.