Uluru Travel Guide

Uluru, previously known as Ayers Rock, is a massive red sandstone formation that is located west of the Simpson Desert. The highest point of Uluru is 350 metres above the ground. While this height is impressive, geologists believe that the rock formation may extend as far as 2.5 kilometres beneath the Earth’s surface. In the past, Australia’s Northern Territory was covered by an ocean. Created over 600 million years ago, Uluru was submerged during most of its existence.

As one of the largest monoliths in the world, Uluru is the most popular natural attraction in the Northern Territory.

History

Scientists do not know exactly when Uluru became a major landmark in Australia’s Northern Territory, but it played a major role in the lives of the early Aboriginal people. As early as 10,000 years ago, the Aboriginal people used Uluru as a landmark during their seasonal migrations through the Northern Territory. The massive monolith was eventually used an important ceremonial area. Today, Uluru remains an area of cultural importance for the Aboriginal people.

Things to see and do at Uluru

Each year thousands of photographers travel to Uluru to capture beautiful images of the monolith’s features. When you see this amazing monolith in person, you will be shocked and awed by its size and vibrant colours. Uluru consists of a gargantuan formation of fiery red-orange sandstone rock. Monoliths are common in canyons and areas of flowing rock formations, but Uluru is located in a vast sea of grass. On a calm day, Uluru may appear to be a sleeping orange giant in the centre of vast grasslands. To amplify the beauty of every image of Uluru, the monolith is located under an azure sky. During the evening, the sky burns, and the orange monolith takes on a red glow.

Uluru, Northern Territory

Early morning sunlight silhouettes a small group of dead eucalypt trees (also known as gumtrees) at the base of the great monolith, Uluru.

To truly understand the size of Uluru, you must stand beside it. When you stand next to Uluru while touching its warm sandstone walls, take a moment to look towards the sky. You will notice that you cannot see the top edge of the impressive natural monument. Follow a dirt path around the edge of the monolith while admiring the unique shapes and crevices of the sandstone formations.

To admire Uluru in a quiet environment, follow the walking path clockwise. This extends the trek to four hours, but you will be rewarded with solitude beyond much of the tourist crowd. You may also be tempted to climb the top of Uluru to appreciate the stunning views of the surrounding grasslands. Before you decide to climb the monolith, keep in mind that the trek to the plateau is culturally reserved for the Anangu people. While many tourists climb to the top of Uluru each year, you may prefer to respect the wishes of the Aboriginal people. Certainly, fewer people are choosing to climb it each year for this reason.

If you’re hunger for exploration has not been sated, follow a nearby trail to trek to Kantju Gorge. Kantju Gorge is an impressive cavern that has been carved into the side of a massive rock formation. After periods of heavy rainfall, a small waterfall flows into the gorge.