Travelling around Australia in a motorhome. A story of our travels starting from NSW then through Queensland, across to Northern Territory and Western Australia, then to South Australia, Victoria and finally across the seas to Tasmania. We have enjoyed everywhere we have visited and look forward to setting off again in our motorhome.

Sunday, June 18, 2006

Uluru 15 - 18 June 2006

Set off early from Kulgera and headed for Uluru. This was a symbolic moment for us as we had always envisaged us looking at Uluru as the sun set and we were finally getting there. We saw a very large monolith and thought it was Uluru, but soon realised it was Mt Conner. Finally saw Uluru about 50km out. Settled into the only campsite at the resort and we were amazed at the number of tourists here (Campsite takes 1200 people and they are full every night lately!). The resort is just like a purpose built town with about 5000 people here (1,500 employees and 3,500 tourists). There is the full range of accommodation including the $1800 a night tent (per couple) inside the national park. Minimum stay is 2 nights! (ie $3,600 for a couple for the weekend!!!!)
Towards sunset we headed off towards Uluru and climbed a hill about 6km away it to watch the sun set. Am writing this as we sip wine and watch the sunset from the top of Jimmy – heaven.

On Friday we visited the Cultural Centre which was fairly informative but found it difficult to find info on the geology which is obviously extraordinary. Luckily we have a library of books with us so we have been able to read about the formation of Uluru. The Aboriginal stories are limited and the detailed stories are only known to the initiated adults. This is disappointing but we do respect this. An interesting statement in the guide from the park states that geology is a western point of view of how Uluru and Kata Tjuta formed and that they have a different belief.
We then walked around the base of Uluru which was about a 9 k flat trek that revealed lots more than we expected - it was everything we hoped and lots more. It is like a big beautiful animal with a shale shell and soft under belly bits. You can see how all the stories were made. We were a bit tired at the end and attributed this to stopping all the time to take 180 photos! We will have to delete a lot but the drama of Uluru will be lovely to revisit in the images.

Saturday we headed out to Kata Tjuta (Olga’s) that surprisingly is closer to Uluru that we imagined. We did 2 walks, the last one finished in time for us to watch the sunset. This is also a stunning area and was full of surprises, especially the luxuriant hidden valleys. The last walk was called the Valley of the Winds and we now know why. It was not too windy but we would not really like to go through on a true winter, windy day in August!

On Sunday we got up early (ouch! not our usual habit!) to watch the sunrise over Uluru. It is a long drive out and we left in the dark. It was very special to see the massive monolith slowly changing colour as the rays of the sun increased in strength. For us it was better than sunset at Kata Tjuta. We will be hanging around for the sunset at Uluru tonight and will then compare. Most of today we have spent moving around the road at the base of the rock choosing new spots to reflect whilst we catch up on things like this Blog!
The evening sunset last night at Uluru was fun as we decided to set up little party on the roof of our motor home in the big sunset viewing area in the best position. We had the usual cheese and biscuits etc, with champagne. It was very pretty and worth waiting for. The Japanese tourists near by were amused enough to make us a part of their travel memories and took our photos. Left in the evening light full of joy and camped about 40km up the road.


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