Alice Springs: hats, a cat, and why we will go back



Lots of Beanies:  We turned up in Alice Springs during the annual Beanie Festival and if you are considering a visit to the Alice, then I’d highly recommend getting there around the end of June / early July because you’ll get to see up close some amazing quirky craft created by incredibly talented people. Also, it is usually the best weather at that time.




The annual beanie festival has been going since 1997 and, according to Araluen Centre information, it has grown to become one of the Northern Territory and Australia’s favourite festivals.

We learned that 150 people from interstate and overseas volunteered at this year’s festival including newcomers and returning volunteers with around 500 people contributing about 7,000 pieces.





Hats 2

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Hats 4

Beanies are important to the people of Alice Springs, where winter nights are cold and many locals see them as a way to make a statement about themselves.

The festival has beanie competitions, textile workshops, kids craft activities and more, while funds raised are used to support Indigenous women in remote central communities.


The Araluen Arts Centre really is a fabulous place for Northern Territorians to showcase their artistic and cultural community and diversity.


Our cat fix:  Now, just have a look at this darling girl, Pixie. We looked after Pixie in Alice Springs while her humans were away for a few days. Straight away we three became firm friends and snuggly bed partners. Pixie was particularly thrilled when we brought home a new backback and she couldn’t wait to try it out. She was such a sweet cat and really enhanced our Alice Springs experience.




What we missed: I can’t believe we ran out of time in Alice Springs. We could be accused of being lazy travelers, yet we don’t think slow travel is necessarily lazy travel. Alice Springs captured my heart like I never expected and I know we will return to scratch deeper through the surface of this remarkable place. Sure, there are places like the National Pioneer Women’s Hall of Fame, the School of the Air and the Alice Springs Desert Park that we didn’t get to, but I really feel it is about the energy of the town and her people that will have us return.


What we ate: Of course there is always a food component in all of our travels, and in Alice Springs we enjoyed the best dumplings we’ve had for a very long time, at Confucius Palace. Then there was the brilliant Casa Nostra, where the same owners have been pumping out seriously authentic Italian since the 1970’s. If you go to Alice Springs we reckon you should eat at both of these great establishments.



Thanks again for reading my stuff. I’ll come back soon with some stories about Uluru and the actual Red Centre.


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This Post Has 2 Comments

  1. Joe

    It is always such a bonus when your travel schedule coincides with a local festival or holiday. Beanies and their importance to the people of Alice Springs is a great example. Glad you got your kitty time with Pixie. She looks like a beauty. Look forward to reading about your trip to Uluru. Happy travels!

    1. whereverarewe

      It does get bitterly cold out there in the middle of the country, so it really makes sense to have a festival for the humble beanie!

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