Mataranka is nothing without the famous Mataranka Springs. Literally in the middle of nowhere (read never never) these now famous mineral springs exist. Palm trees, exotic plants, birds and wildlife, plus the fresh water springs make this place a ‘little’ Tourism Mecca. The fact the springs exist is just amazing.
Mataranka is the next real town after Tennant Creek, just a 1000k south as we head north to Darwin. Mataranka is a very small town that now fully relies on the tourism of the springs.
This area is the setting for Jeannie Gunn's autobiographical account of the year 1902. And the ‘we of the never never’ story. The homestead, which she shared with her husband, Aeneas Gunn, until his death, has been reconstructed near to the hot springs. A stroll through the cemetery is a deeply moving experience, excenuated if you have read the book. .
The headwaters of the Roper River inside Elsey National Park (where crocodiles are managed) are popular for bushwalking, bird watching, canoeing, swimming and fishing.
Mataranka, the small town that it is does provide most essential services.
The Mataranka church is multi denominational