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Canyons are an astonishing natural phenomenon. The most famous examples are of course The Grand Canyon and The Brice Canyon National Parks in the USA.

But then there are also smaller (and not so well known) places that are worth seeing, like Charyn Canyon in Kazakhstan, or, in this case, Kings Canyon. It is part of Watarrka National Park in Australia’s Northern Territory – and also the National Park’s main attraction.

It is, admittedly, a rather small of it’s kind, but still an extreme experience, and a safe and worthwile trip. You get the opportunity to climb up and view the whole stretch of the clift from the top – and you can also work your way down to the bottom, where you will usually find a waterhole to refresh yourself in (which is called a ‘Billabong’ in Australia).

The Kings Canyon is part of the so called “Red Centre” of Australia, which labels the landscape icons Uluru, The Olgas and Kings Canyon. The departure spot to these sights is called Alice Springs – it’s the only town nearby (actually it’s the only town for miles and miles, in whichever direction). If you happen to make your way there, make sure you plan enough time for all three of them – at least one day each. There are a lot of companies offering guided tours – usually three days combining these major sights. You can also easily rent a campervan with a couple of travel buddies and do the camping trip on your own, in your own pace. But make sure to stay in a designated camping area overnight (in order not to disturb the natural outback environment too much); bring enough water (it’s desert country, man) and always take your garbage with you when you leave.

But even if you decide to do a guided tour: Be well prepared and take good hiking gear! Old but comfortable shoes are usually more useful than new, expensive high-tech ones: Your feet need time to get used to their environment.

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