Located around two hours drive west from Alice Spring is the oasis known as Finke Gorge National Park. While it can be visited in a day, to see the best of what it has to offer it is recommended that you stay for a few days, and the camping ground at Palm Valley is an ideal base. This area is renowned for its lush vegetation and numerous palms.
The Gosse Bluff Reserve is also well worth a visit as it where a crater is situated and is therefore known internationally. There is the added attraction of a fabulous bushwalk that takes you to Karalanga Lookout, and also the Mpaara Walk that gives you a fascinating insight into the aboriginal culture, which has a particularly strong presence in this area.
Close by Alice Springs are the stunning MacDonnell Ranges named the east and west ranges. In the east MacDonnell ranges you will find much to see in a beautiful region that is home to numerous bushwalking trails leading to magnificent viewpoints. The Trephina Gorge Nature Park has both walks and amazing scenery and you can also camp here. The Ross River Homestead offers horse and camel ride and is a must do if you are in Alice Springs.
You could stay for weeks in the western MacDonnell ranges and still not see all there is to offer. The Desert Wildlife Park is a major attraction, as are Simpsons Gap and Standley Chasm. Wallace Rockhole is a great place to admire the aboriginal rock from, and the best way to see the best of this area is to hire a 4 wheel drive.