Anna's Reservoir Conservation Reserve

Anna's Reservoir was discovered, named and described by explorer John McDouall Stuart in April 1860.

Stuart named the rockhole after the youngest daughter of one of his sponsors, Mr James Chambers, and visited it on each of his three attempts to reach the northern coast of Australia.

Early travellers and the Overland Telegraph construction team also relied on the reservoir for water.

In the 1880s Billy Benstead chose this site to set up a homestead in what was to be a 51,800km² station operated by the Barrow Creek Pastoral Company.

You can visit the homestead ruins or even camp there under the stars in the bush campsites.

The reserve also offers bushwalking, photography opportunities and it is an important site of European settler history.

The waterhole is sacred and camping and driving in this area is not permitted.

Get the Anna's Reservoir Conservation Reserve fact sheet and map (597.9 kb).

Annas Reservoir Conservation Reserve Annas Reservoir Conservation Reserve Annas Reservoir Conservation Reserve

What to see and do

You can do all of the following activities in the reserve:

  • bushwalking
  • nature appreciation
  • photography.

How to get there

Travel 160km north of Alice Springs on the Stuart Highway and take the private station road. This is accessible by four-wheel drive vehicles only.

You should get permission and directions from Aileron Station before entering as there are no signs directing you to the site.

Check if this park is open

Find out if the Anna's Reservoir Conservation Reserve is open.


Alice Springs Telegraph Station Ranger Station phone: 08 8952 1013

Aileron Station: 08 8956 9706

Contact Parks and Wildlife Alice Springs for more tourist information.


Anna's Reservoir has all of the following facilities:

  • information signs
  • 4WD roads for access to the site
  • camping - away from the waterhole and historic ruins
  • historical ruins.

Please remember

When visiting the reserve, remember all of the following:

  • stay on designated roads and tracks
  • historic, cultural items and wildlife are protected
  • fires are not permitted
  • bins are not provided, so take your rubbish with you
  • pets are not permitted in this reserve
  • generators are not permitted.


You can have a safe and comfortable trip to Anna's Reservoir by doing all of the following:

  • observe park safety signs
  • carry and drink plenty of water
  • wear a hat, sunscreen, insect repellent, suitable clothing and footwear
  • avoid strenuous activity during the heat of the day
  • think about your health and fitness when choosing a walk
  • swim only where recommended.

Last updated: 20 June 2018