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Top Things to do at Ayers Rock / Uluru

One of the great wonders of the world can be found right here in the heart of Australia. Uluru, formally known as Ayers Rock, is a 550 million year old formation that towers over the desert landscape. The iconic piece of nature is deeply sacred to Indigenous Australians and visitors should make the expedition to Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park at least once in their lifetime. Get a firsthand look at the landmark on a day tour to learn about its history, witness an unforgettable sunrise or sunset, or even go hot air ballooning in the outback.

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Top 10 Things to do in Ayers Rock

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Experience Oz Staff
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Ayers Rock, also known as Uluru, is located in the Northern Territory of Australia. This historically significant landmark is a sacred site for the Aboriginal people and many Aboriginal cave paintings can be found at the base of the Rock.

Ayers Rock/ Uluru is also the most famous natural landmark of Australia, and many visitors make the trip to the Red Centre to experience the history and culture for themselves. The best times to view The Rock are at sunset and sunrise, when the light seems to change the colours of the rock to stunning mauves, pinks, reds and orange hues.

Ayers Rock is not only physically beautiful; it also has a spiritual element and it could be attributed to the fact that Uluru is located on a major planetary grid point, much like that of the ancient pyramids in Egypt! Even though it seems to rise out of nowhere, a trip to Ayers Rock / Uluru leaves you with the opportunity to enjoy a variety of cultural activities and immerse yourself in the rich cultural heritage that makes Australia so unique.

As a spectacular natural attraction and an Australian icon recognised around the world, Ayers Rock or “Uluru” and its surrounding areas are very popular tourist destinations.

1. Watch the Sunset over Uluru

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Location: Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park, NT

Watching a sunset over Uluru is an absolute must do activity for visitors to the centre of Australia. While it is impressive to see the giant monolith rising out of the desert at any time of day, the mystery and beauty of this ancient landscape really comes alive at sunset.

Physically, Uluru is not only known for its massive size but also its distinctive, vibrant red colours which are most prominent at dawn and sunset. Be amazed as you watch the setting sun brighten the giant red sandstone.

The reason why so many people travel from far and wide to witness a sunset at Uluru is because each sunset is unique. As the sun sets, marvel as the angle of the sun and the reflection of the rock, clouds and red dust change the colours of the sacred rock before your eyes.

The internationally recognised UNESCO world heritage site is one of the great wonders of the world and its famous sunsets should not be missed.

Visitors can watch a sunset here from one of the designated viewing areas inside the Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park on a guided sunset tour or with your own private vehicle.

"The internationally recognised UNESCO world heritage site is one of the great wonders of the world and its famous sunsets should not be missed."

For an unforgettable experience, enjoy a BBQ Champagne dinner at sunset AAT Kings or Emu Run.

No need to worry about car hire or arriving early to find your spot, these coach tours will pick you up from the Ayers Rock Resort and arrive at designated coach parking sites for the best vantage point to take in the Australian Outback at sunset.

After taking a million photos of the sunset, relax with a delicious outback BBQ dinner and glass of champagne under the starry night sky.

All visitors are required to pay an additional National Park Entry Fee regardless of whether you self drive or join a tour which goes towards the conservation of the national park.

The fee is a small price to pay though to witness Australia’s most famous sunset. This is an experience you simply won’t forget.

2. Field of Lights

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Location: 177 Yulara Drive, Yulura, NT

The Field of Light is an incredible example of an artist’s incredible imagination coming to life.

With the clever use of light, Munro has created the Field of Light installation - an outdoor garden consisting of 50, 000 spindles of colourful light that gently sway in the desert at Uluru.

The incredible outdoor artwork can only be viewed in the evening hours either prior to sunrise or after a Uluru sunset.

As far as the human eye can see, view the colourful lights as you wander through the pathways that mysteriously draw you in. See Uluru illuminated like never before with the art installation in place until 31 December 2020.

"As far as the human eye can see, view the colourful lights as you wander through the pathways that mysteriously draw you in. See Uluru illuminated like never before with the art installation in place until 31 December 2020."

This once in a lifetime experience is one of our top things to do in Uluru/Ayers Rock and you can join this experience with guided tours that will conveniently collect your from the Ayers Rock Resort and deliver you to the Field Of Light.

This amazing art installation will inspire and leave you in awe as you see over 7 soccer fields of lights light up the sky.

Join a sunrise Field of Light tour and you will experience the field of lights plus a magnificent sunrise over Kata Tjuta and Uluru.

The experience lasts for approximately 3 hours with return transfers and refreshments included.

Don’t forget to bring your camera and walking shoes on this incredible tour of the red centre.

3. Visit the MacDonnell Ranges

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Location: MacDonnell Ranges, NT

The West MacDonnell Ranges offer a perfect blend of the outback’s most impressive sites. Marvel at spectacular ochre coloured mountains and swim in refreshing waterholes.

Explore the region’s massive gaps, gorges, clefs, dry riverbeds, creeks and waterholes with guided tours of West MacDonell’s key sites such as Mt Gillen, Standly Chasm, Angkerie Creek, Ellery Creek Big Hole, Glen Helen Gorge, Ormiston Gorge and Simpsons Gap.

Given the expansive size of Australia, it’s no surprise that it can take a little while to travel around. Be sure to allocate at least a full day to explore the highlights of West MacDonnell Ranges.

"The West MacDonnell Ranges offer a perfect blend of the outback’s most impressive sites. Marvel at spectacular ochre coloured mountains and swim in refreshing waterholes."

Guided day tours can give you a teaser of the region with guided transport through the dusty red ranges and gorges and on nature walks to remote swimming holes.

The beauty and seclusion of the Australian outback is most apparent on a tour such as this. Getting away from the hustle and bustle of the city and escaping to a region with natural beauty and peace and quiet is nirvana for someone who appreciates the great outdoors and lack of crowds.

Of course you will see all the popular natural highlights here but the benefit of joining a guided tour is their inside local knowledge of hidden sites and the cultural knowledge which you would absolutely miss should you rent a car and try to drive to these sites on your own.

4. Kings Canyon

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Location: Various departure locations, NT

Join a tour to the Kings Canyon and you can make the journey to the rim of Kings Canyon for remarkable views of the Australian outback.

A moderate level of fitness is required to tackle the walk which can take up to three hours. For those who prefer an easier walk, the base of the canyon is a far easier walk around the boulders on the canyon floor.

The walk is worth the effort you put in. As you hike the red rock cliffs, enjoy the views of the canyon, forest and distant views out to the red desert.

"Join a tour to the Kings Canyon and you can make the journey to the rim of Kings Canyon for remarkable views of the Australian outback."

The large gorge has 300 metre high walls. The loop around the rim is 6km and takes approximately 3 hours while the route around the base is only 2 km.

Tours of Kings Canyon are run daily from Ayers Rock Resort with return transport at dawn so that you can hit the ground running and target the walk before the peak of the heat sets in for the day.

5. Overnight Experience in the Outback

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Location: Various tour departure locations

Uluru is a destination best explored on a multi-day tour given the numerous natural attractions and the distance that extends between them.

Discover the best of the Red Centre over the course of three days with the comfort and reassurance of a tour guide with local knowledge to show you their corner of Australia.

There are tours designed to suit your comfort level too. For an authentic Australian outback experience choose to camp out in swags under the night.

Without the time restrictions of a day tour, head off road and tour waterholes, see Aboriginal Cave Paintings, visit the Aboriginal Cultural Centre, Kings Canyon and walk around the base of Uluru.

"Discover the best of the Red Centre over the course of three days with the comfort and reassurance of a tour guide with local knowledge to show you their corner of Australia."

If you are a more refined traveller, then you can still enjoy some of the creature comforts of a 3 day tour with budget and superior accommodation available at Kings Canyon Resort as you tour the outback.

Join a 3 day guided tour of Ayers Rock starting from Ayers Rock or Alice Springs with an all inclusive packages that includes accommodation, meals and transport.

Many visitors find these tours to be great value for money and one of the best things they have done in Ayers Rock that allows them to get outdoors to explore the real Australian outback as opposed to just sitting in a tour bus and getting out to take a few photos.

Multi-day tours allow you to get under the skin of the Australian outback and learn about the local culture as well experience the natural beauty of the rugged landscape.

6. Uluru Camel Tours

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Location: 10 Kali crt Yulara, NT

One of the most iconic ways to experience the red centre and tour the world heritage Uluru Kata Tjuta National Park is on a Uluru Camel Tour.

See one of the most beautiful parts of Australia on a gentle one hour camel ride through the red sand dunes deep within the desert.

From atop of one of these placid camels, follow the ‘camel train’ as you are led around the desert landscape.

Learn about the history, geography, wildlife and cultural significance of the land to the Aboriginal culture as you view the spectacular sights.

Uluru and Kata Tjuta make a breathtaking backdrop to your camel ride through the desert and the camels are an ideal mode of transport to get around this arid and humid landscape.

“Uluru and Kata Tjuta make a breathtaking backdrop to your camel ride through the desert and the camels are an ideal mode of transport to get around this arid and humid landscape.”

Departing from Ayers Rock Resort, you will be transported to Australia’s largest camel farm where you will saddle up for your ride in the Australian outback.

For unbelievable photo opportunities the ideal time to join these camel tours is at sunrise and sunset.

Watch the desert come alive or watch a majestic sunset when the angle of the sun and shadows of the sunset make the vivid colours of the desert even more striking than during the daylight hours.

Following the one hour ride, sit down to enjoy a light breakfast and a traditional Aussie damper and freshly brewed coffee, tea or orange juice or toast to the evening with a beer, soft drink and nibbles.

Uluru is consistently ranked highly every year as one of the Top 10 places in Australia to enjoy a sunset and a leisurely camel ride experience in Uluru is something that you will always remember.

7. Scenic Flights over Uluru

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Location: Transfers from Ayers Rock Resort, NT

Before seeing Uluru & Kata Tjuta by land, you should definitely see these spectacular landmarks from the air on a scenic flight with Professional Helicopter Services.

Only from the sky can you begin to comprehend the scale of Uluru- the second largest rock on the planet and one of the great natural wonders of the world.

Rising 348 metres high, Uluru is a UNESCO world heritage site that you must add to you travel bucket list.

Professional Helicopter Services will take you up in the sky for an unforgettable flight over both Uluru and the Kata Tjuta domes and explain to you how they came to be here almost 500 million years ago.

“Only by air can you begin to comprehend the scale of Uluru- the second largest rock on the planet and one of the great natural wonders of the world.”

Designated as a deeply sacred site to the Aboriginal people, 75% of the national park cannot be accessed by land. No such restrictions apply when you join a scenic helicopter flight.

Fly high above Uluru aboard a helicopter with amazing views of the Australian outback and see why it is called the ‘Red Centre’ of Australia.

The vibrant red dirt, brown and arid landscape contrasting with the bright blue skies make for an unbelievable flight and activity that will no doubt be a highlight of your visit to Uluru.

Choose from a 15 minute teaser flight or extended 25 minute and 36 minute flights for impressive aerial views of two natural rock formations plus Walpa Gorge.

A morning and afternoon flight is available to suit your itinerary and transfers from Ayers Rock accommodation is included for your convenience.

A scenic flight over Uluru is a must do activity when you visit the region which is why it makes our top 10 things to do list.

8. Join a Segway Tour

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Location: Kuniya Car Park, Uluru- Kata Tjuta National Park, NT

To add a little bit of adventure to your visit to Uluru, join a guided segway tour for a unique way to explore the Australian outback.

These nimble two wheeled electronic segways are easy to use navigating the pathways surrounding the base of Uluru and surprisingly you will cover a lot of ground.

During a 4 hour segway tour of Uluru you will segway up to 10 kilometres including ¼ quarter of the base of the gigantic rock alongside your experienced tour guide.

With several stops along the way, riders will get some incredible photo opportunities of Uluru and a visit to Mutitjulu Waterhole at the base of the rock.

“Segway tours allow you to cover more ground that you would on foot- without breaking out into a sweat- and with some incredible photo opportunities.”

Uluru segway tours are an activity that you can share with the whole family with riders as young as 12 permitted to take part in the action packed experience.

This is a tour where the kids won’t get bored, as you zip around the Uluru Kata-Tjuta National park discovering the history of the region and viewing the sights.

These small group tours provide a more intimate experience and allow you the opportunity to get a closer view of the rock without having to break out in a sweat walking the base of Uluru.

These exciting segway tours run up to two times a day depending on demand and seasonality.

To join the segway tours book return hotel transfers from Ayers Rock Resort or self drive and meet Uluru Segway Tours at the Kuniya Car Park in the Uluru Kuta-Tjuta National Park.

9. Visit Alice Springs

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Location: Alice Springs, NT

The closest town hub to Ayers Rock is Alice Springs at a distance of 460 kilometres or a 5.5 hour drive.

However, don’t let the distance stop you from exploring one of Australia’s most interesting regional towns.

It is not going to be possible to explore tour Alice Springs in a day from Ayers Rock but the town would make an ideal overnight stop.

One way transfers are available with AAT Kings from Ayers Rock to Alice Springs where you can travel in air-conditioned comfort.

"With Aboriginal and European influences, Alice Springs is a charming town rich in history. Located in the Red Centre, Alice Springs is an outback town consisting of a desert environment with several creeks running through it."

With Aboriginal and European influences, Alice Springs is a charming town rich in history. Located in the Red Centre, Alice Springs is an outback town consisting of a desert environment with several creeks running through it.

As you arrive in Alice Springs, learn about the wildlife, the culture, the history and the best place to find a cold beer in the centre of Australia.

Alice Springs is home to a number of must visit attractions including the Alice Springs Desert Park, the Royal Australia Flying Doctor Service and historic buildings such as Alice Springs Telegraph Station and heritage homes.

Once you have finished uncovering the history of Alice Springs, head to the Museum of Central Australia to view Aboriginal artefacts, impressive artwork, fossils and displays on local flora and fauna.

10. Visit an Outback Cattle Station

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Location: Lasseter Highway, Petermann NT

Visit a historic cattle station and learn about the industry and the challenges of working in the harsh conditions of a remote and dry farm.

Curtin Springs is a working cattle station run by the Severin family. The cattle station stretches across 1 million acres of arid land and keeps a total of 4000 head of cattle.

Come along for a visit and stay a while at the Curtin Springs Wayside Inn for hearty homestyle meals, a cold beer or a cup of tea and a bed for a night.

The cosy homestead has around 30 budget rooms and campsites available for campervans.

"Visit a historic cattle station and learn about the industry and the challenges of working in the harsh conditions of a remote and dry farm."

Curtin Springs is a diversified business that also produces paper. Join a 1 hour tour and see how the harvested grass can produce a range of paper. An incredible feat in such a remote location.

Or strap on your walking boots and go for a walk in nature on this privately owned cattle station.

Guided tours will give you an insight into the history of the outback cattle station and how this wildlife corridor can produce world class beef in such a harsh and remote desert landscape.