"The Red and Hot Centre" Top 5 Page for this destination Uluru National Park (Ayers Rock) by vtveen

Uluru National Park (Ayers Rock) Travel Guide: 460 reviews and 1,271 photos

Alice Springs - Glen Helen - Kings Canyon - Uluru

During our visit to Australia, part of an around the world trip, we ‘had’ to visit Uluru. After all one of the most famous landmarks of the country. But reading (books and VT) and seeing (TV) more about this destination, we discovered that there was a lot more to see.

And so we decided at last to make an one way trip with a rental car through the desert of the so called Red Centre from Alice Springs to Uluru. During this trip of three days we travelled along the Namatjira Drive, Mereenie Loop Road, Luritja Road and Lasseter Highway.
We visited the West MacDonnell National Park with its gorges, Watarrka National Park with Kings Canyon and Uluru Kata Tjuta National Park with the famous Uluru (Ayers Rock).
For driving the Mereenie Loop Road - between Katapata Pass and Watarrka NP - we needed a permit from the Central Land Council, which we bought at Glen Helen Resort. We used a 4WD car; although I can not judge if it is absolutely necessary, it felt quite comfortable to have some extra power on some bad parts and side roads.

There are plans to seal the roads between Kings Canyon and Glen Helen. If you do want to have a real adventure, you should hurry up, because on that moment this trip will lose a lot of its attraction and special charm.

We stayed in Glen Helen Resort, more or less luxurious, Kings Creek Station and Curtin Springs Station. The last two were very basic lodgings, but in our opinion more appropriate with the Australian Outback. And at least a lot cheaper than the more well known resorts at Kings Canyon and Ayers Rock.

Specially the day trip from Glen Helen to Kings Canyon was quite an adventure, totally on unsealed and sometimes bad gravel roads. Driving through the Australian desert with its red coloured sand, lots of green bushes and even trees in this wilderness, the white trunks of ghost gums in dry rivers. An amazing, stunning and breathtaking landscape, almost without other human beings and animals.
We have been three days in the Red Centre and this was just enough; we only regret we hadn’t not time enough to visit Kata Tjuta and to walk through these impressive rock formations.

Visiting in the middle of January sometimes the temperatures reached a height of 50 degrees Celsius !! For us this part of Australia will always remain The Red and Hot Centre.

I will post this intro and my tips in the Uluru page and the Alice Springs page, because VT doesn’t ‘offer’ a decent destination for the Red Centre.

’Nganana Tatintja Wiya - We Never Climb
The Uluru climb is the traditional route taken by ancestral Mala men upon their arrival to Uluru. Anangu do not climb Uluru because of its great spiritual significance.

Anangu have not closed the climb. They prefer that you - out of education and understanding - choose to respect their law and culture by not climbing. Remember that you are a guest on Anangu land.
Also, Anangu traditionally have a duty to safeguard visitors to their land. They feel great sadness when a person dies or is hurt.’
Official website of Uluru – Kata Tjuta National Park

Pros and Cons
  • Pros:breathtaking scenery
  • Cons:heat, flies
  • In a nutshell:an incredible adventure driving through the desert
  • Last visit to Uluru National Park (Ayers Rock): Jan 2006
  • Intro Updated Feb 5, 2007
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Reviews (19)

Comments (8)

  • iandsmith's Profile Photo
    Jan 29, 2010 at 10:20 AM

    Excellent pages indeed. Of course there wasn't much traffic, we Aussies travel there in winter. Cheers, Ian

  • FAIRYCHIMNEY's Profile Photo
    Apr 19, 2007 at 4:58 AM

    excellent pages with lots of useful tips : you really lure one into Australia:)) regards from Cappadocia

  • unaS's Profile Photo
    Jan 26, 2007 at 10:19 AM

    Thanks for the reminder - I should have mentioned it! I even bought a button: I did NOT climb Uluru.

  • Dabs's Profile Photo
    Jan 9, 2007 at 6:59 PM

    It's nice to read about someplace HOT when it's really cold outside :-) Very lovely write up, one day perhaps we will get here...

  • SLLiew's Profile Photo
    Jan 8, 2007 at 11:17 AM

    Wow... what amazing writeup details. Will definitely check back on your tips when I take my first trip to Downunder... soon I hope : )

  • Sibbella's Profile Photo
    Jan 8, 2007 at 7:42 AM

    This is one place I have to get to! My ex roommate is heading back to Australia again in February, she spend a year there back in 2003 and loved it. Great pages and tips Jaap!!

  • globetrott's Profile Photo
    Jan 8, 2007 at 6:05 AM

    an excellent page & great pics ! Australia and especially the Uluru is on top of my travel-dreamlist ! Good to know I should take my hat with fly-net, that I once bought for Norways moscitos...

  • lou31's Profile Photo
    Dec 27, 2006 at 5:35 AM

    Excellent pages on Uluru!...You have written some very good tips and the pictures were lovely. I must go out there and see it for myself...thanks for sharing...


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