19.08.2010 Australia, Northern Territory, Uluru (Ayers Rock)

A good Australia family vacation often revolves around exploring the culture and beauty of the country. Part adventure and part learning experience, such a vacation would be ideally fitted to explore the Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park in Red Centre, Australia. A site of historic and cultural importance to the Aboriginal peoples of the central regions, Uluru is a massive plateau that rises from the landscape in a manner similar to Africa’s amazing Mt. Kilimanjaro.

An Anangu guide often is available to bring family tours in a journey around the base of this great edifice of red stone. The towering piece of nature often plays with colors as the daylight changes and the shadows move across its textured and weather-roughened surface. These light shows provide an almost magical illustration to the tales of the guide, who explains that Uluru is as old as the creation myths from the Australian Dreamtime.

The Kata Tjuta in contrast are numerous, rounded domes of rock and dust that stand as a testament to the shaping powers of wind and time. These, too, can be explored with the company of an Aboriginal guide, who will explain the storied histories of the place.

The ways to explore the landscape of this great park are as numerous as the sights available to see within it, of course. Options are available to explore by motorcycle or camel, for those who wish to explore the region from the ground level. This in particular gives a sense of the vast scale of the place, and the camel tour often allows for long discussions with the native guides. Alternatively, families can take to the air in the many helicopter tours available. This is an equally good way to sense the vastness, but instead of losing oneself in the immediate surroundings and being down in them, it allows a family to look at the picture from above, and see just how much these features dominate the landscape for miles and miles around.

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