Kings Canyon Rim Walk

Top choice Hiking

in Kings Canyon & Watarrka National Park

Walkers are rewarded with awesome views on the Kings Canyon Rim Walk (6km loop, three to four hours; you must begin before 9am on days when temperatures are forecast to exceed 35°C), which many travellers rate as a highlight of their trip to the Centre. It's a challenging hike at the beginning, but is possible for anyone of reasonable fitness.

After a short but steep climb (the only 'difficult' part of the trail), the walk skirts the canyon's rim before descending wooden stairs to the Garden of Eden, a lush pocket of ferns and prehistoric cycads around a tranquil pool. The next section of the trail winds through a swarm of giant beehive domes: weathered sandstone outcrops, which to the Luritja represent the men of the Kuniya Dreaming.

There is a short version called the Short Return Walk, which stays open on hot days until 11am, but that's the only reason to do it – you'll miss most of the best views, but work almost as hard to get there.