Magnificent! It was once known as the largest rock in the world, a standalone monolith. Uluru, or Ayers Rock, was a place to stay for Australia aboriginal. Their culture, their stories, and some of their beliefs are written and displayed along the way we walked around the rock.
Yea, we took a base walk around this largest rock in the world. It's about 10km to walk one round. The track was already there, we just need to follow the track and viewing the scene from each corner of this rock. However, after the 10km walk, I don't really feel very impressed. First, the journey was too long and we were actually spending a long hour to view at a same site. Second, the weather was dry, hence no obvious water flow can be seen from the hilltop. Not much thing to be seen, except some naturally formed scars on the walls. They actually came out with some beliefs or stories from those scars, which was morally teaching the aboriginal for well-being.
It's like a hill, but it's not soil, it's a rock. There are some season where people can actually climb up, when the wind is not strong enough. During the time we visited there, the climbing site was closed due to strong wind at the summit. It was recorded that at least 38 people were dead for climbing up the hill, but I'm not sure why. However, to be respectful to the aboriginal and their assets, it's not recommended to climb up the hill even if the weather or season allows.
Uluru is well-known of its sunset view. It will show a reddish surface when sun setting and shining on its surface. It's not typical yellow or orange, it's red. But, too bad, we can only see a little bit, perhaps the really red surface can only be seen during the summer time, not winter?
However, we still managed to see and capture some very true color right in our eyes, just like a painting, the color contrast was strong. During both the sunrise and sunset, when we looking towards the horizon, what we can see is the gradient of color, from red to blue or from blue to red, it's obvious and distinct, and awesome!
Uluru during Sunset
Uluru during Sunrise
Kata Tjuta during sunrise
Kata Tjuta during sunset
Fantastic isn't it? My friends even managed to capture the Milky Way in the night time, right above the Uluru. If not recalled wrongly, the entrance can only allow us to enter before 6pm. We already aimed to capture the Milky Way with the Uluru at the sunset viewing point, hence we went through the entrance before 6pm, and stayed inside until about 9pm when Milky Way was exactly in front of our eyes, and the moment was just fantastic! Not cloudy, no light pollution, a total clear sky crowded with stars, just stars. Memorable.
And yes, we also went to Kata Tjuta, and have another nature walk of about 7.4km. The walk is called "Valley of the Wind", and indeed we felt the strong wind once we reach the valley. Non stop wind blowing, luckily we were there about the noon time, where sun was already up there and we didn't feel too cold for that.
The nature walk was shorter compared to the Uluru's base walk, but more scenes to see. There, I really felt like I was in virtual world. Greenland with rocky hills, so 'heavenly-view'. Too bad, my camera battery low, but fortunately I still had my HTC Desire HD, not bad though. LOL
Other than Melbourne, we stayed the longest in Uluru. 3 nights here. We spent two days to went into the Uluru and Kata Tjuta. The entrance was 25AUD for 3 days entrance pass. The feeling of paying too expensive for this was no longer there when we walked in and enjoy the magnificent views. Another awesome!
Alice Spring, Katherine Gorge and Darwin
We had initially planned to go Kings Canyon. But, due to the long journey, we skipped it, but regretted when we actually heard from people that Kings Canyon was quite a worth to go. No choice, if I would have chance to go Australia again, I would go Kings Canyon.
Remaining was about 6 days, we went from Uluru to Alice Spring, then Katherine Gorge, and lastly Darwin where we took off to go back Singapore. We have been to two waterfalls, Katherine Gorge and Litchfield National Park, Wangi Waterfall. From Alice Spring onward, there was no longer 4 seasons, it's near to equator. The sun was strong, high temperature hot day, which was like 30 degree Celcius. The weather was just perfect for us to soak in the cold water, chill and relax.
We walked for about 4km to the Katherine River. Another unique experience was here, I was wearing swimming trunk and slipper, and walking through the rocky and rough surface track, for total trip of 8km go and back. Tired, but when we saw the river, the tiredness was gone. Dipped inside the water, Awwweee....Although the waterfall in Katherine Gorge was dried, we still enjoyed the scene of the river from the lookout, and chilling in the water under the big sun.
One day before we took off, we were in Darwin. We went to Litchfield National Park, Wangi Waterfall. It's the biggest waterfall in that national park, and we were there at the right time. The dry season, where the waterfall was just nice. Otherwise, the road might be flooded during the wet season and we couldn't enter at all. Even if we could, alligators were there in the water, waiting for fooood...
Litchfield National Park, Wangi Waterfall
And yep, that's it for all for my Australia Trip. If I weren't there, I wouldn't know how much it will be worthy for me to spend about RM10k for the whole trip, including air ticket, car rental, accommodation, food, tours and everything. I wouldn't know when else can I have the time to travel this long, and enjoy till the max. So so much worth it.