If you're visiting Alice Springs but you're short on time or want to see the best of the town in one go, then the "A Town Like Alice" half-day tour is the way to go.
I went on this tour as I was only in Alice Springs for a weekend but still wanted to see as many sites as possible.
The "A Town Like Alice" half-day tour is usually held in the afternoon, at least it was when I went on it. It kicks off at 2pm concluding four hours later at 6pm (local time) and consists of five stops: the Alice Springs School of the Air, the Alice Springs Telegraph Station, the Royal Flying Doctor Service and ANZAC Hill.
At the Alice Springs School of the Air, we learnt all about the school, which provides distance education to children living in remote towns and areas. At the Alice Springs School of the Air, myself and my tour buddies watched a video which gave details on its history and how it all works. The tour guide also handed us samples of the correspondence material and art & stationery supplies for us to view. We also watched video of the lessons to see exactly how they are given. Before we left, we got to take pictures of the School.
The next stop was the Alice Springs Telegraph Station, which is huge and consists of: the Station Master's residence and kitchen, the Post Telegraph office, the Barracks, the Battery Room, the shoeing yard, evaporation tanks, the buggy shed and store, and the milking and camel yards. At the Telegraph Station, we were given the freedom to walk around and see these sights for ourselves at our own pace, with the help of a guide map that we were given upon arrival. As well as through our tour guide, parts of the Telegraph Station also provide a history of the Station and the development and use of the Telegraph within Australia.
The next stop was the Royal Flying Doctor Service. This stop was the highest on my to-do list as I had heard of the Service and its significance, but never knew the history and wanted to see its headquarters. Similar to the Telegraph Station, at the Royal Flying Doctor Service headquarters, we were given a talk, watched a movie on the Service's history and were given a history of the Service through its exhibits. We also had the opportunity to walk through a replica of the Service's signature planes, which I couldn't pass up. It's amazing how much can fit into one plane!
The next stop was the Alice Springs Reptile Centre. The Centre is the largest reptile display in Central Australia where we met Terry, the saltwater crocodile. Considering how much damage a crocodile can do, he was surprisingly calm in his enclosure as we were watching and learning more about him. We also got to learn more about goannas, lizards, geckos, spiders and frogs.
The last but certainly not the least stop was ANZAC Hill. On the way up, we passed signs commemorating every war that Australians have served in, which is moving in itself, let alone when we reached the top. When we reached the top there were several wreaths by the memorial, presumably from ANZAC Day services, however, I couldn't confirm this and whether wreaths are capable of lasting for four months. We stayed at ANZAC Hill to remember those Australians who have served us as well as to view the majestic Alice Springs, to watch the sun set, which was again an incredibly moving movement.
Overall I highly recommend this tour to anyone visiting Alice Springs, especially if it's your first visit.