Uluru National Park (Ayers Rock) Things to Do

  • Starting Back to Valley of the Winds Trailhead
    Starting Back to Valley of the Winds...
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  • Kuniya Walk - Trail to Hunters' Cave
    Kuniya Walk - Trail to Hunters' Cave
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  • Valley of the Winds
    Valley of the Winds
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Most Recent Things to Do in Uluru National Park (Ayers Rock)

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    Mala Walk - Trail to Kantju Gorge

    by AlbuqRay Updated Apr 11, 2011

    The first picture shows the trail to Kantju Gorge and also the turn to the east side entrance for the Second Rock Art Site as you are entering the gorge. The gorge has more trees and much of the trail is shaded. There is even a curved wood bench in one spot where you may take a break.

    Trail to Kantju Gorge at Second Rock Art Site Trail to Kantju Gorge Shady Spot on Trail to Kantju Gorge Curved Wood Bench on Trail to Kantju Gorge End of Trail to Kantju Gorge
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    Mala Walk - Second Rock Art Site (West Side)

    by AlbuqRay Updated Apr 11, 2011

    This second rock art site had two sides. The west side entrance is next to Kurpany's Cave. You must leave the main trail and climb up a small rock slab to get to the platform inside the cave. The cave is formed by a tall cavity much like the Waveform Cave, but there are large slabs of rock on the outside leaning against it, making it more enclosed. There are fewer rock drawings on this west side than on the east side.

    Second Rock Art Site - West Side Entrance Approaching Second Rock Art Site West Entrance Second Rock Art Site West Side Cave Second Rock Art Site West Side Outside Rock Slabs Second Rock Art Site West Side Drawings
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    Mala Walk - Second Rock Art Site (East Side)

    by AlbuqRay Updated Apr 11, 2011

    The east side of the second rock art site is separate from, but adjacent to, the west side. The east side entrance is via a platform off the main trail at the entrance to Kantju Gorge. The east side cave is formed by a large rock overhang that turns into a low ceiling cave. The cave looks like water sometimes runs through it. The east side has more rock drawings than the west side. It also looks like there are two kinds of drawings. The ones on the wall are more the ochre colors of yellow and rusty red with not much white. The drawings on the ceiling have much more white in them.

    Second Rock Art Site - East Side Entrance Second Rock Art Site - East Side Drawings Second Rock Art Site - East Side Cave Second Rock Art Site - East Side Drawings
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    Mala Walk - Double Mouth Cave

    by AlbuqRay Updated Apr 11, 2011

    Double Mouth Cave is my name, coming from how this cave looks from the trail. Then again, it could be a half-buried skull! It is located past the Mala Puta area near where the Base Walk meets the trail to Kantju Gorge. It is adjacent to Kurpany's Cave.

    Mala Walk - Double Mouth Cave Approaching Double Mouth Cave on the Mala Walk Double Mouth Cave from Second Rock Art Site
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    Mala Walk - Kurpany's Cave

    by AlbuqRay Updated Apr 10, 2011

    The Kurpany is an evil, black dog-like creature that is part of the Mala Story: "Luunpa, the kingfisher bird, cries out a warning 'Purkara, purkara!' - an evil dog-like creature called Kurpany has been created by people in the west to destroy the Mala ceremony. The warning is ignored and Kurpany kills two Mala men, and everyone, men, women and children run away."

    Mala Walk - Kurpany's Cave Kurpany's Cave from Base Walk Intersection Kurpany's Cave from Second Rock Art Site Kurpany Marker
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    Mala Walk - Mala Puta

    by AlbuqRay Updated Apr 10, 2011

    Mala Puta is a sacred Aboriginal women's site. The opening of the cave is described as triangular or bell-shaped like the pouch of the female Mala (rufous hare wallaby). It is prohibited to enter the cave and you are asked to not take photographs of the enclosed area. It is no longer considered acceptable for the Anangu to spear tourists who enter Mala Puta, but the fines are substantial (5000 AUD by the National Parks and Wildlife Regulations and 1000 AUD by the Aboriginal Land Rights Act).

    South End of Mala Puta Area Looking Back To Waveform Cave from Mala Puta Area North End of Mala Puta Area
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    Uluru - Kata Tjuta Cultural Center

    by AlbuqRay Updated Apr 9, 2011

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    The Uluru - Kata Tjuta Cultural Center is an interesting place to visit. I did take a couple of pictures before I got inside and saw the signs about no photography. It has businesses owned and operated by local Aboriginal people. The Walkatjara Art Center has items from the Mutitjulu Community. The Gallery Shop sells unique ceramic art, paintings and functional craft works from Anangu artists. The Ininti Cafe and Souvenir Shop has a wide selection of souvenir gifts, books, videos and clothing that feature Uluru and the cultural heritage of its traditional owners. Maruku Art brings together the work of hundreds of artists from their homelands and communities in the western desert. There is also Anangu Tours, a company offering small group tours hosted by local Aboriginal guides. You may want to purchase the booklet, "An Insight Into Uluru," which has information about self-guided walks (2 AUD). There are toilets, phones and free open-air picnic areas.

    Uluru - Kata Tjuta Cultural Center Arriving at Uluru - Kata Tjuta Cultural Center Map of Uluru
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    Whether to Climb Uluru

    by AlbuqRay Updated Apr 9, 2011

    Please note that, although it is not forbidden except under bad conditions, the Aboriginal people ask that you not climb Uluru. As a traditional rite for ancestral Mala men on their arrival at Uluru, the climb is a sacred route for them. There are also safety and environmental reasons. Not only have 35 people died from falls and heart attacks, but there are mundane issues like where do you go to the bathroom when you are on the mountain? Because you must register to climb and pay to enter the Park, there are data on the proportion of visitors who climb Uluru. The percent has dropped. Today ~38% of Park visitors climb the mountain, down from ~74% in 1990. It is nice to see that most people respect the ancient traditions. The path is always closed overnight from 30 min after sunset to 30 min before sunrise. It may also be closed due to weather conditions, rescue operations, or by request from the Traditional Owners for cultural reasons. See also a videoclip the base of the climb.

    Uluru Climb Area Mala Walk and Uluru Climb Trailhead and Parking Bottom of the Uluru Climb Start of the Uluru Climb It Is Steep!
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    Uluru Sunset Viewing Area for Cars

    by AlbuqRay Updated Apr 8, 2011

    We intentionally went to the Uluru sunset viewing area for cars in the morning to miss the crowds. There were only a couple of other cars there and the view was good in the morning also. The viewing area is a long, paved parking lot off the highway to the Cultural Center about 9 km from the toll booth. It's only ~2 km northwest of Uluru itself. With a decent zoom, you can get some good pictures. You can see the climbing path up the side of the mountain. There are also some nice plants along the parking lot.

    Uluru Sunset Viewing Area for Cars Zoom of North End of Uluru Zoom of Kantju Gorge & Climbing Path Up Uluru Desert Plant and Uluru Desert Landscaping by Uluru Sunset Viewing Area
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    Old Lookout

    by AlbuqRay Written Apr 8, 2011

    After the others left for the Sounds of Silence dinner and show, I was trying to decide where to go to watch the sunset. Just northeast of the campground there was a small hill. I tried there first. It turned out that it was an old lookout area that was no longer used. I was the only one there. I could see Uluru but it was partially blocked by some low hills. I could see another hill to the southwest with people on it. It was within easy walking distance and I thought the view might be better from there. It turned out to be the Imalung Lookout (see the next tip); however, the view from Imalung was really about the same and there were lots of people there.

    Uluru on Left, Imalung on Right from Old Lookout Uluru at Sunset from Old Lookout Uluru at Sunset & Yulara Drive from Old Lookout Top of Old Lookout Bench at Old Lookout
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    Uluru from Imalung Lookout at Sunset

    by AlbuqRay Updated Apr 8, 2011

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    The Imalung Lookout is on a hill in the middle of the Yulara Drive loop. It is just a short walk southwest from the Ayers Rock Campground. Uluru itself is about 12 km south and a little east. Some low hills cut off the bottom part of the view of Uluru, but it is very convenient and the sunset view is still nice. There were quite a few people there. The restaurant on the trail coming up the hill was closed though.

    Uluru from Imalung Lookout at Sunset Trail Up Imalung Lookout Top of Imalung Lookout Yulara Business District from Imalung Lookout Sunset from Imalung Lookout
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    First Views from the Lasseter Highway

    by AlbuqRay Updated Apr 7, 2011

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    As you are going to Yulara on the Lasseter Highway, you see some of the landmarks for the first time. The initial one is Mount Conner, which many people mistake for Uluru. Next is Uluru which you can barely see on the horizon, and finally the Olga Mountains. For us, the sequence was the intersection of Luritja Road and the Lasseter Highway at 15:09, Mount Conner at 15:25, Uluru at 16:09 and the Olgas at 16:13. We passed the airport access road at 16:20 and arrived at the Ayers Rock Campground in Yulara at 16:24.

    First View of Mount Conner First View of Uluru First View of Olga Mountains
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    Visiting Uluru (e.g. Ayers Rock)

    by paulenmapje Written Apr 6, 2011

    When visiting Uluru (e.g. Ayers Rock) consider driving around the rock at sunset. Most visitors crowd up before the main view-platform west of the rock which certainly is a guarantee for beautiful pictures, but will only give you your version of the one anybody else has already made (and even better).

    There is plenty of time to drive (by car) around the rock and doing so you can enjoy the awesome view from different perspectives. Timetables in your hotel will indicate at what time the sun will set. If you return to the main platform about 30 minutes before you will have plenty of time to make that all familiar one.

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    Watarrka - Kings Canyon

    by Zanzibargirl Updated Apr 4, 2011

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    Watarrka National Park is best known as the home of Kings Canyon, a mighty chasm cleaving the earth to a depth of 270 metres. Kings Canyon would have to be one of the most incredible of the many natural rock carved mountains of the outback in the middle of Australia.

    The walk I did was the moderately challenging six-kilometre Kings Canyon walk. Taking in magnificent views of the Canyon rim, the weathered, buttressed domes of 'the Lost City' and the 'Garden of Eden' - a sheltered valley with permanent waterholes and lush vegetation. The walk is suitable for fit, relatively experienced walkers and can be completed in about three to four hours. For the less energetic, the shorter and easier Kings Creek walk leads into the centre of the Canyon. When I visited I thought the heat would just about kill me, yet I proudly made the walk to the top of one of the most beautiful stunning drops I have ever seen in stone.

    Derived from an Aboriginal word referring to the umbrella bush that thrives here, Watarrka National Park has been home to the Luritja people for more than 20,000 years. The area was little known to Europeans until recently; Ernest Giles being the first white man to explore the area in 1872.

    Kings Canyon Sheer Drops Watarrka - Kings Canyon Me hiking the canyon The Canyons inhabitant The Garden of Eden
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  • Cultural Centre

    by grkboiler Updated Apr 4, 2011

    The Cultural Centre is a great introduction to Uluru - Kata Tjuta National Park. It gives the visitor a sense of the traditional and current Anangu way of life, history, religion, languages, and art. The Anangu are the Aboriginal people who live near the park. There are also daily demonstrations on arts and crafts, plant walks, bush tucker, and culture.

    It is a great idea to visit the Cultural Centre before you see the rest of the park. It will add to your trip and give you an understanding of what Uluru and Kata Tjuta mean to the Anangu people.

    Entry to the Cultural Centre is included in the park admission. Hours are 7am - 6pm. Photography is not allowed.

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Uluru National Park (Ayers Rock) Things to Do

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