About Marree

Where is Marree?

Marree is in the north of South Australia at the base of the Birdsville Track and Oodnadatta Track.

It’s also close to Lake Eyre South.

Read on to find out about Marree’s history.

See the Things to do in Marree page.

Find out more about Marree and the Birdsville Track in the Birdsville Track Audio Tour.

 

Afghan Grave Stone Marree

Marree History

Marree was a cultural melting-pot of Afghan cameleers, European settlers and local Aboriginal peoples – the Guyani, the Dieri and Arabunna.

Although the different cultures intermingled in the town’s shops, coffee palaces and railway station, they lived in separate areas. Even the cemetery was separated by culture. You can still see this today by reading the cemetery’s gravestones.

Winding back a bit, in 1859 German botanist Joseph Albert Hergott discovered some springs whilst on an expedition with explorer and surveyor John McDouall Stuart. The springs made it possible for the area to be settled and so a town grew up.

The ‘Afghan’ cameleers arrived in 1866. Most of them actually came from Baluchistan. Strings of 100 camels began carting food and supplies up and down the Birdsville Track. They provided a vital service for settlers further north.

Marree was laid out in 1883 but it was then called Hergott Springs. In 1884, the railway began to operate and Marree became both a telegraph station and the base for the Birdsville Track. In 1914 World War I broke out and Hergott Springs was renamed Marree. Marree boomed around 1957 when it became the transhipping location for everything going by rail to Alice Springs. The railway line north to Alice was narrow gauge and the track south of Marree was standard gauge, so everything had to be taken off one train and put on another. In 1981 the railway line was diverted through Tarcoola and Marree became a tiny settlement of 70 people.
Marree Train

Marree Accommodation

Marree Hotel
Railway Tce South, Marree 5733
08 8675 8344, Fax 08 8675 8328
www.marreehotel.com.au
info @ marreehotel.com.au

Drovers Run Caravan Park
Birdsville Track (corner of Oodnadatta Track), Marree 5733
08 8675 8248

Oasis Town Centre Motel & Caravan Park
Railway Tce South, Marree 5733
08 8675 8352
oasism@bigpond.com.au

Marree Food

Marree Hotel
Railway Tce South, Marree 5733
08 8675 8344, Fax 08 8675 8328
www.marreehotel.com.au
info @ marreehotel.com.au

Marree Roadhouse & Oasis Cafe/Bistro
Railway Tce, North Marree 5733
08 8675 8360, Fax 08 8675 8396
info @ marreelakeeyreflights.com.au
www.marreelakeeyreflights.com.au
Takeaway and eat in, store, fuel, tyre repairs, post office, Lake Eyre flights
Open 7am to 7pm

Marree Fuel

Marree Roadhouse & Oasis Cafe/Bistro
Railway Tce, North Marree 5733
08 8675 8360, Fax 08 8675 8396
info @ marreelakeeyreflights.com.au
www.marreelakeeyreflights.com.au
Takeaway and eat in, store, fuel, tyre repairs, post office, Lake Eyre flights
Open 7am to 7pm

Visitor Information

Marree Telecentre and Tourist Information
Railway Station, Marree 5733
08 8675 8222
Broadband internet, printing, images burnt to CD
www.marree.com.au

Arabunna Centre
Railway Tce, Marree 5733
Museum and tours
08 8675 8351
reg.dodd @ gmail.com