Top tips for a Red Centre adventure

by possandruby

Central Australia is dubbed the Red Centre and as you fly into the Ayers Rock Airport you can see exactly why the red ochre soil and world-famous monolith glows rich red on approach.  Less than a 3-hour flight from Melbourne and just half an hour more from Sydney, a Red Centre mini-break is possible for a long weekend and is a complete change of scene. You can adapt the adventure to your needs from a fully inclusive luxury experience to a self-contained and self-drive independent trip or a hybrid of both.

The Ayers Rock Airport is serviced by regular flights from most capital cities and is extremely convenient as it eliminates the need to make the drive from Alice Springs. If you have the time and desire for the 4-hour plus road trip, flying into Alice Springs is an option.

The accommodation options at The Voyages Ayers Rock Resort range from the campground to a 5-star resort. I stayed at The Lost Camel Hotel, which offers standard hotel rooms features, ensuite bathroom, air-conditioning, and access to the resort facilities.

Here is a sample itinerary for a 5-day mini-break:

LocationKey attractions/highlightsAccommodation type

Day 1 To Uluru

Arrive AM

Uluru tour and sunset PM

Day 2 Uluru

Brunch at Sails in the Desert AM

Explore the resort and walking trail AM

Star Pass Field of Light Experience PM

Day 3 Uluru

Uluru Sunrise Segway Tour or cycling adventure AM

Sunset Helicopter Flight PM


Day 4 Kata Tjuta

Kata Tjuta Sunrise AM

Valley of the Winds walk

Kata Tjuta Sunset PM


Day 5 Uluru

Uluru sunrise AM

Depart AM




Be prepared! This is not a ”sleep in late and party till dawn’ destination. The best activities and sightseeing take place at sunset and sunrise and the nightlife after dark is very low-key.  The best way we recommend to plan the day is to get up early for the sunrise activities and head back to the resort for an afternoon nap and a swim, then gear up and head out again to experience the remarkable sunset.


We have all seen images of Uluru and are familiar with its iconic red glow but seeing ‘the rock’ in real life is spectacular. The first time you see the imposing monolith it literally takes your breath away.  You can walk, cycle or even take a segway around the base walking track and of course, you can also drive. There are some points around Uluru that are scared so please follow the instructions and be respectful of the traditional owners. Walking up the rock is no longer permitted. The best colours are experienced at dawn and dusk.


The domes of Kata Tjuta (once known as the Olgas) are located 50 km from Uluru, just under an hour’s drive. This is home to some of the most beautiful walking trails and sweeping views in the red centre. The Valley of the Winds loop trail is a Grade 4 track that can be broken down into sections if you don’t feel you have the capability of time to complete the entire walk which takes 4 -5 hours.  It should be noted that the track closes at 11 am on extreme heat days so it’s best to get out there early.


A light installation by internationally renowned artist Bruce Munro features 50,000 solar-powered lights that come to life as the sun dips below the horizon. All the colours of the rainbow are represented here in this display that spreads over the desert floor.  Tickets to the attraction are available through the resort and you can get the star pass which includes drinks and bush tucker-inspired canapes.


This is a great mini break and you really don’t need much luggage for this trip.  I took carry on luggage only in the form of a backpack. Shorts and t-shirts are the key wardrobe items you will need plus maybe a long sleeve top and pants for the evenings. There are, however a few items that you will be very glad you packed:

  • Suncream
  • Insect repellant
  • Fly net
  • Hat
  • Walking shoes
  • Swimwear
  • Waterbottle
  • Day pack
Uluru walking trail

Have you been to the red centre? What did you enjoy most?

Please share your comments below and on our social media channels @possandruby

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