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Home Attraction The Salt Plains

The Salt Plains

A shimmering crystalline desert awaits you near Fort Smith. Extending over 200 square kilometres of otherworldly landscape are the distinctive Salt Plains of Wood Buffalo National Park.

Salt from ancient seas bubbles up to the surface here in springs, leaving behind mounds up to two metres high in some places. On a hot day, the surface moisture will evaporate, creating a shiny white crust of salt crystals as far as the eye can see.

Deposited many millions of years ago, the salt was once harvested by Indigenous peoples to preserve meat and fish. Today, it draws wildlife like bison, who enjoy the enormous salt lick. The area also has a range of unique salt-tolerant plant life.

The plains are just one of the reasons Wood Buffalo was declared a World Heritage Site. Drive down from Fort Smith to see for yourself. Join park staff for a free interpretive guided tour.