Uluru, Australia’s great Red Centre.
The giant monolith is one of the country’s most easily recognisable wonders, up there with the Great Barrier Reef and Sydney Harbour Bridge. But does it get cold in Australia’s Red Centre, where this mythical stone has sat for 500 million years?
If so, how could this be? It’s so hot in the desert, right? Well, not exactly. The climate in the region is actually rather extreme, with temperatures ranging from 3.5° C in July to 37.5° C in January. Winter nights (falling between June and August) can drop below 0 – that’s even colder than in the cities that sit below the Red Centre!
The Red Centre is very dry, receiving hardly any rainfall throughout the year. The dryness and lack of humidity mean there is no water blanket to trap in either the heat or cold. Therefore, on winter nights, when the sun goes down, the day’s warmth escapes the atmosphere, creating a chill that definitely calls for rugging up.
Now that you know why Uluru gets so cold at night, let’s take a look at some of the fun stuff you can do there (along with visiting the Rock, of course!).
Enjoy a sunrise (or sunset) visit
Everything is better in the golden hours of the morning and evening, right? Well, it should come as no surprise that these are also the best times of day to see this magnificent natural wonder in all its ruddy-hued glory. There is something about viewing this spectacular landmark in either morning or night that makes it that much more magical, with the ability to catch the landscape’s wondrous colours from a range of different viewpoints.
Don’t forget Kata Tjuta
Kata Tjuta is the second of the incredible rock formations situated in the Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park. Though not as instantly recognisable as Uluru, Kata Tjuta is no less spectacular: a stunning series of domed rock formations that are a wonder for anyone who takes the time to visit them along with Uluru.
See gorgeous springs & waterholes
This comes as a surprise to many of the region’s visitors, but the area surrounding Uluru is home to some of the most mystical waterholes on this side of the Northern Territory. This includes the Mutitjulu Waterhole, situated on the eastern side of Uluru. This uniquely shaped and brightly coloured waterhole is the perfect contrast to the rock, and always comes as a pleasant surprise to travellers who didn’t previously know about the vibrant spot.
Related article: Make the most out of your Northern Territory trip