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Alice Springs to Ayers Rock

Cardiff, United...
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Alice Springs to Ayers Rock

Flying into Alice Springs late afternoon Monday 7th Jan and flying out of Uluru on Friday 11th Jan. There'll be 4 of us (and all our luggage for 6 week trip around Oz) Any ideas how we can make the most of our visit. Our ages are between 21 and 65

South Pacific
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for Hobart, Tasmania
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1. Re: Alice Springs to Ayers Rock

Rent a 4WD and drive to Uluru via the West MacDonnel Ranges parks, Tnorala, Palm Valley, then via the Mereenie Loop to Watarrka (Kings Canyon) and then spend some time at Uluru and Kata Tjuta.

This website is very helpful in planning: http://www.parksandwildlife.nt.gov.au/?a=1286

Luigi

Sydney, Australia
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for Sydney, Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park, Business Travel, New South Wales
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2. Re: Alice Springs to Ayers Rock

Hi,

Another vote fro hiring a 4WD & driving via the Mereenie Loop.

Car Rental Companies to use which offer a one way service to Ayers Rock are Thrifty and Hertz . Its best to rent the car for a minuim of three days to avoid a fee with Hertz. Thrifty waive the one way free if you hire the car for 6 days. Go to the Alice Springs Tourist Visitor Information Centre to get the "Best Deal " which offer unlimited kilometre rates if you hire for three days minimum.

thrifty.com.au/car-hire/…

Other Car Rentals to use in Alice Springs - Central Car Rentals. They offer all sizes of 2 and 4WD"S - Large , Meduim and small.. All the vehicles have limited and unlimited kilometre rates available to suit your needs.

www.central carrentals.com.au/

Driving to Uluru via Kings Canyon starts at the Namatjira Drive to the West MacDonnell Ranges in Alice Springs , passing through the major sights and later leads into the Mereenie loop which continues onto Kings Canyon.

You need to have a 4WD drive and a permit from the Central Land Council to drive through Aboriginal country, which is apart of the Mereenie Loop. All information can be found at the tourist information centre in Alice Springs .

tripadvisor.com/Travel-g255063-c85960/Alice-…

tripadvisor.com/GoListDetail-i17672-Uluru_Ng…

Arlington, Virginia
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for Arlington
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3. Re: Alice Springs to Ayers Rock

My suggestion is to limit the amount of your luggage to one piece per person, preferably one carry-on bag per person. That way all your luggage will fit in the trunk of the car and you won't have to rent a huge vehicle just for the luggage.

You can find serviced apartments all over Australia which have washer/dryers in the apartment.

Cardiff, United...
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4. Re: Alice Springs to Ayers Rock

Thanks for your replies we had thought about driving, I know wish we'd booked to fly in and out of Alice Springs as most of the organised tours don't do one way and the hotels at Ayers Rock are that much more expensive then in Alice. One of the reasons we'll be carrying our full luggage allowance is that we plan to spend the last 3 weeks of our trip scuba diving the Great Barrier Reef, We prefer to use our own gear and for a long trip it's very expensive to hire.

If we do hire a 4 wheel drive will we have to hire camping equipment or is there reasonably priced accomodation en route.

Thanks again Sarah

South Pacific
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5. Re: Alice Springs to Ayers Rock

No, you don't need to camp. There's sufficient accommodation along the way.

There is a euphemistic "resort" at Glen Helen at the western end of the West MacDonnels. It has reasonable motel-style accommodation and cheaper shared-facilities accommodation. http://www.glenhelen.com.au/

At Kings Canyon there is also motel-style accommodation and a few better spa suites. There's also a campground. http://www.kingscanyonresort.com.au/

At Uluru, everything is expensive. It varies from posh hotel to campground: www.ayersrockresort.com.au/accommodation/

Pleasanton, CA
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6. Re: Alice Springs to Ayers Rock

We just got back last week from 2 weeks traveling around Australia. The 5 of us stayed 1 night in Alice Springs then did 2 nights at a cabin in the Ayers Rock Resort campground ($150/night, sleeps up to 6). The cabin was small, 2 bedrooms and a tiny kitchen/dining area, plus a short walk to the community bathrooms, which were surprisingly decent. My sister and I are both Worldmark members so we stayed in Worldmark resorts the whole rest of the trip, and this was definitely "roughing it" compared to that, but it's really the only way to see Ayers Rock at sunrise, which was great! And walking around it right afterwards is much cooler than any other time of the day.

FYI, we did our own cooking pretty much the whole trip and though the groceries at Alice Springs were more expensive than Cairns, they were definitely cheaper than Ayers Rock. Wish we'd bought drinks and snacks there before driving to Ayers Rock.

We flew into Alice Springs rented a van for 3 days with unlimited mileage prepaid from Hertz through Ayers Rock Resort for $423 plus $135 one-way fee (and possibly a $35 airport fee, need to check my uncle's credit card bill), stayed overnight one night at Lassaeter's then did this great outback tour, Rod Steinert Aboriginal Dreamtime & Bushtucker Tour, which was $66/person if you provide your own transportation. Bring cash (Australian) if you want to buy original aboriginal paintings from the artists for about half what they are in town, mostly $50-$100 but good quality and size. Then we drove 4.5 hours to Ayers Rock. We didn't do the scenic route, but people in the forums seem to like it. It was nice having a car to drive to Ayers Rock and the Olgas, though there is a free shuttle bus from the campground to Ayers Rock, not sure about departure times. The van had plenty of room for the 5 of us and our luggage, though we only had 4 suitcases and 3 duffels.

Adelaide, Australia
2 posts
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7. Re: Alice Springs to Ayers Rock

Merry Christmas! :)

One thing nobody has addressed above is how hot it will be where you are planning to go! We were up there in October & it was 37-42C every day then in spring. January is mid summer! You can expect temps in the mid 40's!

I strongly recommend that you do not drive the Mereenie Loop road at that time of the year unless you are seasoned, well prepared outback travellers. If something goes wrong with your vehicle, things can get very bad very quickly!

I'd recommend something safer like a day tour along the western MacDonnell ranges taking in the sights, then driving back to AS & down the Stuart Hwy & along the Lasseter Hwy to Ayers Rock. Just remember that no matter where you go up there in Jan it will be stinking hot!

Have a great trip & stay safe!

Cymru am byth!

Kevin.

Sydney
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8. Re: Alice Springs to Ayers Rock

WATER! Take more than you think you will ever need - and then double it.

It will be hot - and there will be flies.

Alice Springs...
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9. Re: Alice Springs to Ayers Rock

Also take note that if you do rent a car to drive from Alice to Ayers Rock, it will need to be with a company that allow one-way drives, and they will charge a surcharge. Companies that allow one-way between these destinations are Avis, Hertz and Thrifty.

Although there are shuttle-bus services by AAT Kings, when you factor in the distances you'll need to travel to see Uluru, & the Olgas, then hiring a car is certainly cheaper and more convenient, even with their one-way surcharge.

Kings Canyon is a great climb, but keep in mind it will be at one of the hottest times of the year and the walk is not for the faint-hearted. In my own personal opinion, if you're not upto climbing the canyon it's probably not worth adding on to your journey - you could see some equally beautiful sights without the climb in the West MacDonnell Ranges. This also opens up the possibility of hiring a regular 2WD vehicle too (including a larger All Wheel Drive for your luggage) as you will not need to drive on the 4x4 road linking the West Macs and Kings Canyon (Mereenie Loop).

Good upto date information from a local's point of view can be obtained from the Alice Springs Visitor Information Centre at info@tourismca.asn.au if you want to ask some detailed questions from an alternate source. :)

10. Re: Alice Springs to Ayers Rock

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