We flew from Adelaide to Ayers Rock where we were met and transferred to our hotel - Longitude 131. It seems all the hotels in the Ayers Rock area are operated by one company and we stayed at the Top of the Line!
At Longitude 131, each couple has their own "tent". It's really more like a cabin - a solid structure with a tent shaped roof. This is our tent on the right.
Every tent is set so it has an unobstructed view of Ayers Rock. Below is the view from our bed! Each tent is also equipped with a solar panel and air conditioning. You can see some of this equipment in the picture below right.
The view from outside our tent was quite spectacular - this giant monolith sitting in the middle of the desert. These pictures were taken from right outside our tent and Ayers Rock looks fairly close. Actually it is about a 1/2 hour ride to the rock. That means it's probably 15 - 20 miles away.
The rock is primarily sandstone and it changes color as the light changes. The favorite times to visit the rock are sunset and dawn because that's when the colors change most dramatically. We went at both times.
On our sunset visit, we walked around a portion of the base, went into a few of the many caves and wound up in a little valley where we relaxed, had champagne and watched the colors change as the sun went down.
Ayers Rock is becoming more commonly known by its aboriginal name - Uluru. It is one of the largest monoliths in the world - almost 6 miles in circumference around the base. '
The second afternoon, Granny decided to stay at the resort while I went back to the "rock". It was just the guide and myself walking through one of the areas that takes you to one of the pools. Again the colors were beautiful and some quite different where the water would run down into the pool.
On the trail back, I spied a pretty bird.
My guide was an amateur photographer and was intrigued with the reflection in my glasses.
On my return, I joined granny for a glass of beer as we waited for the lecture on the Southern stars.
Our last day, we went to the Olgas. The Olgas is a formation or rock domes. The tallest one is over 600 feet higher than Uluru - Ayers Rock.
On the right you can see us with the Olgas in the background.
On the way, we saw a herd of wild camels. It is interesting that the camels are not native to Australia. They were brought to Austalia in the mid to late 1800s from India to help while builing the railway. Then they were let loose and now they are one of the largest populations of wild camels anywhere in the world - between 300,000 and 600,000.
The Olgas - Kata Tjuta - is also a sacred place of the aboriginals. Once we got there we took a walk up the Valley of the Winds
From the Olgas, we returned to the resort, picked up our luggage and were on our way to Cairns and Port Douglas.