By Jeremy Rochow
Published: Wednesday, August 14, 2019
There were 3 things I brought home from central Australia: a greater knowledge of Indigenous culture, spectacular scenery imprinted on my mind, and a lot of red dirt stuck to my shoes.
As the plane begins to descend towards Ayers Rock Airport, passengers across the aisle stare out of the window and begin to ooh and aah.
I peer across and catch a glimpse of the giant red behemoth that is Uluru. Jaws drop and eyes widen as everyone scrambles to get a better view.
We needn’t have, though – as soon as you disembark the plane you can’t help but be awestruck at the iconic view of Uluru right in front of you.
The traditional custodians of Uluru and surrounding areas, the Anangu people, have a spiritual connection to this land and believe it was created by their ancestors.
The 348m-high rock is the centrepiece of some of these beliefs, but you’ll quickly find there are plenty of other places in the region to explore as well.
From visiting the Valley of the Winds to digging into bush tucker, here are 5 Uluru must-dos.
The height of Uluru
1. Walk to the Valley of the Winds
The ancient dome-like rock formations of Kata Tjuta rise above the dunes, towering over the speckle of green native trees which are scattered around the boulders like an Aboriginal dot painting.
Picturesque views are the norm at Kata Tjuta, but the Karingana lookout is the most spectacular of the lot.
Orange and red hues of cascading rock – created by the oxidisation of minerals in the dirt – frame a spectacular image of gigantic boulders and green tree tops contrasted by the blue sky.
The best time to take the 8km hike through Kata Tjuta is in the early morning as the sun begins to rise, before the crowds of people arrive.
This will give you a chance to absorb the breathtaking views and watch the shadows slowly disappear, creating the illusion that the rocks are changing from a deep rouge to a light orange colour.