• Distance 6km
  • Altitude max 861m
  • Altitude min 626m
  • Duration 3.5 hours
  • Trail type Circuit
Three Stars

Three Stars

Worth Doing

The Australian Hiker Experience Rating is a measure of the overall quality of a walk. It is intended to help you decide whether to walk a trail, not to measure anything objective. Consider this our personal take on the walk.

Grade Four

Grade Four

Bushwalking experience recommended. Tracks may be long, rough and very steep. Directional signage may be limited.

The Australian Grading system is based on the australian standard for measuring trail hikes.

Rubbish Bins
Camping Grounds

Kings Canyon Rim Walk NT (6 km)

Watarrka National Park

Nearest Town

  • Yulara (303 km)
  • Alice Springs (473 km)

Starting Location

Kings Canyon car park

Finish Location

Kings Canyon car park

Best Time to Travel

Year round but if the temperature is forecast to be over 36° Celsius you must start the walk by 9:00am to void the excessive heat

Kings Canyon Rim Walk Review

The Kings Canyon Rim walk provides the opportunity to gain a birds eye view of the desert landscape. The Rim walk is a one way walk, marked with blue arrows and starts with a fairly hefty climb from the car park up a series of stone steps to the summit of the canyon.

Apart from being a way of managing foot traffic on the top of the canyon it also ensures that those not fit enough to undertake this walk soon pull out. For fit hikers, this walk will present no problem but if you don’t fall into this category or have young children you may be better off doing the 2.6 km Kings Creek walk. If you do decide to take kids up on top of the canyon, keep a careful eye on them as you have some serious drop offs to contend with.

Once you have done all the hard work at the start you will be spending most of the time navigating the canyon rim to various lookout points that provide spectacular views. The maximum altitude on this walk will vary depending on how far you want to explore the canyon top. You can stay on top of the canyon rim for the whole walk before descending back down to the car park or you also have the option of descending down into the Garden of Eden around the halfway mark. The Garden of Eden is essentially an oasis, complete with water in the middle of the canyon. And just beautiful!

The rock colouring and formations on this walk, like much of the surrounding parks, are spectacular and as a bark fanatic there are some pretty amazing ghost gums and other occasional trees to which you can get up close. While I don’t rate this walk as highly as the Uluru base walk, I would still recommend that you make time to do this walk.

Walk signage with temperature comfort rating

Interpretive signage map

The walk starts with a nice big set of rock stairs

Trail markers – blue arrows

One of the many lookouts

I love tree bark even when its dead

View from one of the lookouts onto the plain below

Garden of Eden sign

Looking down into the Garden of Eden; lots of water

Garden of Eden view

Canyon view showing other hikers and some of the infrastructure

Getting There

Many people will either do this walk as part of a tour to Uluru or as part of a larger self drive road trip. Watarrka (Kings Canyon) can also be accessed by Yulara (map from Google Maps)

Things to Know

  • Phone: Yes, Optus and Telstra phone signal
  • Water: there is water at the car park
  • Toilets: There at the car park
  • Trail: This walk is on natural trail, mainly rock
  • Dogs: No dogs allowed on leash
  • Other: 
    • This trail is very popular so if you want a bit of solitude start early
    • No camping is allowed on this trail
      • There is a resort located nearby if you are looking at staying before travelling on
    • If you are doing this walk, heat can be an issue particularly when you are on top of the canyon so if the forecast is going to be 36° Celsius or over you will need to start the walk before 9am
    • Most travellers visiting Watarrka National Park (Kings Canyon) tend to be doing the ‘grand tour’ and will often be travelling to/from Uluru Kata Tjuta


This walk was undertaken by the team from Australian Hiker

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