The drive to Yulara was not terribly exciting so when we stopped so that Charles could fill up with petrol, Robin went off looking for amusement. He came back with a huge grin on his face and soon we were watching Dinky, the singing Dingo, walking up and down the piano keys and howling. Dinky's owner was more interesting. He had arrived in Australia with his parents in 1951. They organised tours to Ayers rock and the Kings Canyon. They built the first accommodation apart from tents at Ayers rock and built a road to the canyon.
When we arrived at Yulara, the Ayers Rock purpose built resort, we decided that we needed to get straight off and DO SOMETHING. We drove past THE ROCK and went on the Olgas, another incredible rock formation. This one is a heap of rocks which look as they are made of large size concrete at close quarters. The rocks are gigantic (see photos). We went for a 7.4km walk around some of them and then watched the sunset. I am afraid that I am running out of superlatives!
The following morning we arose very early in order to join a dawn walk around Ayers Rock itself (9km) The walk was great - at each turn the view was different. The rock is fantastic colours and the shapes are amazing. The guide was very informative about nature, geology and how the Aboriginals live. She was not so well informed on the sacred sites and was a bit negative on all the things that she was not allowed to tell us. The packed breakfast was disappointing and the whole thing was grossly over-priced - as is everything at Ayers roock which is a totally stitched-up monopoly.
At sunset we lined up all the cars in front of the rock and took photos. A ranger allowed us to use his truck to stand on. The sunset was unforgettable.
In the evening we went to a lecture about the stars. The guide had a magic torch which he used to illuminate the various constellations. There were two telescopes and we were able to see Venus, Mars, a pair of stars and a cluster of stars. This tour definitely lived up to expectations.
The geology is FANTASTIC. It is a shame that the whole thing is such a rip off!