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Oodnadatta, SA

The famed outback town of Oodnadatta is a must-see for visitors who want to get ‘off the beaten track’.

Stop for a cold drink at the Pink Roadhouse, which is a mine of information for travellers heading into the Witjira National Park and the Simpson Desert. The new facilities at the Oodnadatta racecourse are popular for large celebrations with campground, kitchen, bar and toilet facilities.


The town has a heritage-listed sandstone railway station that has been converted into a museum and provides great tales of yesteryear.

Oodnadatta took its name from the Aboriginal word Utnadata which means ‘blossom of the mulga’.

Travellers venturing into the outback can check road conditions with Transport SA on 1300 361 033.

The real outback

Lake Eyre is usually a gleaming white saltpan, set in an area where rainfall evaporates almost before it hits the ground.


When rain falls, an amazing transformation takes place. Plants sprout and flower at astonishing speed to complete their lifecycle before the great drought returns. The Lake Eyre dragon, a little spotted grey lizard, skitters across the surface. Its joined by dense flocks of birds soaring over vast expanses of wildflowers. A type of water-holding frog emerges from years of suspended animation to splash about happily. Cormorants, pelicans, gulls and black swans feast on brine shrimp that miraculously appear with the life-giving water.
In 2001, thousands of birds flocked to Lake Eyre as Queensland summer rains slowly flowed south to the desert basin. It was the second consecutive year that fish, birds, reptiles and plants transformed Lake Eyre into a desert oasis – usually a rare occurrence.
The lake is the world’s largest saltpan, covering an area of almost 10,000 square kilometres. It drains a million square kilometres and was once thought to be Australia’s mythical inland sea. The salt crust is often hard enough to drive on. In 1964 speedster Donald Campbell broke the world land speed record there. The view on a sightseeing flight from nearby William Creek is dramatic. You can also fly over the Lake Eyre national Park from Arkaroola Wilderness Sanctuary in South Australia’s Flinders Ranges, or drive to it along the Oodnadatta Track near Curdimurka.

Where to stay?


  • Historic/Heritage
  • Remote

Popular Activities

  • Driving
  • Swimming
  • Outback

About Oodnadatta

  • Locality: Rural locality
  • Oodnadatta Postcode: 5734
  • State: South Australia
  • Region: Flinders Ranges and Outback
  • Latitude: -27.54653
  • Longitude: 135.44703
  • Elevation: 119m
  • Population: 204
  • Median Income: $23400
  • Area (Sq/km): 61910.011
  • Timezone: Australia/Adelaide

Explore The Outback

Australia has a vast remote interior, much of it largely untouched. By night, the outback is deathly quiet, with the only light provided by the stars and the moon - a perfect oportunity for stargazing. Explore the isolated heart of the country, meet and connect with Aboriginal people and experience one of the oldest living cultures in the world. Go ‘walk-about’ and immerse yourself with Australia’s endless outback horizons.

Outback Experiences

Luxe Accommodation

Enjoy a distinctly Australian luxury experience, such as the unforgettable reefs, islands, beaches and coast; rugged mountain ranges, rainforests and vast national parks; and the many vibrant food and wine regions. Take a once in a lifetime adventure and discover the sheer indulgence of experiencing the wonders of Australia in style and stay in total luxury.

Australia has wide variety of accommodation options to suit most budgets and travelling preferences. Choose from luxury lodges, boutique hotels, serviced apartments, motels, bed and breakfasts, caravan parks as well as youth and backpacker hostels.


Glasshouse Mountains

The Glasshouse Mountains in the hinterland of Queensland’s Sunshine Coast are actually the cores of 20 million year old volcanoes. The sides of the volcanoes have eroded away leaving only the hardened rock spiremountain cores we see today. Learn more about this awe-inspiring landscape.

Glasshouse Mountains