Explore Central Australia’s three headline acts on this adventurous 3-day 4WD tour from Alice Springs. Get up close to the sacred mound of Uluru (Ayers Rock), hike through Watarrka (Kings Canyon) and watch the sun rise over Kata Tjuta (the Olgas). Complete your outback experience by riding a camel through the desert, visiting a local watering hole and sleeping out beneath the stars in a traditional ‘swag’. This small-group tour is limited to 20 people and includes hotel pick-up, camping equipment and meals.
With three days to explore the outback, you’ll travel from Alice Springs to the desert stop of Erldunda; take a base walk and hear Dreamtime (folklore) stories at Uluru; go for a guided walk at Kata Tjuta; and sleep under the stars like a swagman!
Day 1: Alice Spring - Uluru (L, D)
After an early start from Alice Springs, travel south to Erldunda and the red desert landscapes of the Waterhouse and James Ranges. Stop for refreshments at a camel farm, and take the opportunity to try riding one of these swaggering ‘ships of the desert’!
The journey to Uluru also stops at the Mt Ebenezer Roadhouse, where you can browse or purchase Aboriginal artifacts. Rocky outcrops begin to rise out of the desert as you near Uluru, and you’ll also stop to view the tableland of Atila (Mt Connor).
After a stop for lunch, arrive at the Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park, where you’ll learn about Aboriginal law and religion at the park’s Cultural Centre. After taking a short guided walk at the base of Uluru, you have the option to take a full base walk or to climb the rock. However, as Uluru is sacred to the local Anangu Aboriginal people, it is preferred that you do not climb it.
At sunset, sit back and relax with sparkling wine and snacks and admire the stunning sight of Uluru changing color as the sun sinks behind the horizon. After dinner, sleep under the stars in a traditional swag -- the outback term for a bedroll which contains a mattress, sheet and pillow. The origin of the swag comes from itinerant workers (swagmen), who traveled by foot from farm to farm looking for work, carrying their belongings wrapped up in a bedroll.
Day 2: Kata-Tjuta - Kings Canyon (B, L, D)
Next day, enjoy the unforgettable sight of the sun rising over Uluru and Kata Tjuta (the Olgas). After breakfast at the campsite, take a relaxed 4.5-mile (7km) guided walk through the Valley of the Winds at Kata Tjuta. Follow the route of dried creek beds, view Kata Tjuta’s many sandstone domes and experience the isolated beauty of the Red Center.
After refueling with refreshments at the Ayers Rock Resort, travel to your private bush campsite at Kings Creek Cattle Station, complete with unique bush toilet and shower. The sense of isolation and natural beauty is immense, with views taking in the George Gill Ranges and surrounding outback desert. Enjoy dinner at your campsite, before sleeping under the stars in a traditional swag.
Day 3: Kings Canyon - Alice Springs (B, L, D)
After breakfast at the campsite, take a leisurely 4-mile (6km) guided walk to Watarrka (Kings Canyon). You’ll pass the canyon’s immense towering walls of red sandstone, and visit the Amphitheatre and Lost City escarpments and rock formations. Cool off with a swim in the idyllic Garden of Eden rock pool, fringed with palms.
Returning to Alice Springs in the afternoon, the route follows a typical dirt track stretching through the immense outback.