Tennant Creek is an old gold mining town, home to the largest open-cut gold mine in Australia up until 1985 when mining stopped.
Tennant Creek is the core of the Barkly Tablelands, and as most people know it was the site of Australia's last gold rush in the 1920s and 30s and was at that time the third largest gold producer in Australia. Some gold mining continues in the area today, but the town had its beginning in the 'Overland Telegraph' that once linked Melbourne to London, constructed in the 1870s.
Tennant Creek also has a strong Aboriginal heritage and the culture can be seen in the local art and craft galleries. A wonderful example is Nyinkka Nyunyu – it contains unique indigenous art and a cultural centre where travelers can learn about Aboriginal life and history of the area.
There are plenty of things to do in Tennant Creek, mostly all to do with gold mining. You can visit the old Gold Stamp Battery, Peko Road, and have a guided tour around the area. If you want hands on experience head to the Moonlight Rockhole along Warrego Road, where you can fossick for gold yourself! You will need a permit to do this, so head for the Department of Mines and Energy first. There is only limited accommodation in Tennant Creek and most visitors tend to stay in Alice Springs accommodation and visit Tennant creek on a Northern territory organised tour.
Other attractions include the National Trust Museum, one of the 12 remaining telegraph stations in Northern Territory, as well as horse riding or visiting The Devil's Marbles. The Devil's Marbles are huge boulders at the side of the road, said by Aboriginal mythology to have been put there by the Rainbow Serpent.
South from Devil's Marbles is the Stuart Memorial, and Barrow Creek where another telegraph station still stands. In August the Barrow Creek Races are very popular and something you have to see.