Another great site to visit while you are in the Red Centre – is Kata Tjuta (also known as the Olgas). A group of large, ancient rock formations, about 30 kilometres away (roughly a 40 minute drive) west of Uluru, and is also a sacred place to Aboriginal people. The name Kata Tjuta translates into “many heads”, and it is no surprise as it is made up of 36 domes spread over an area of more than 20 kilometres!
Kata Tjuta is a sacred site for men in the Anangu Aboriginal culture(Anangu women do not go to Kata Tjuta) and many of the legends surrounding this place are kept secret. This also spiked our interest, so we wanted to go there and do one of the allowed hikes that are open to public. The amazing rock formations can be seen from the side of the road as well, from is a viewing area on your way there.
Valley of the Winds Walk
As I mentioned, there are two walks that you can choose from – A Walpa Gorge walk, or the Valley of The Winds walk (which could also be done either as a full circle, or only some parts of the walk). But I highly recommend doing the full circle – it is more demanding, but if you are prepared (early start, lots of water, a hat and a sunscreen), you should be ok. This is a great way to see the beauty of the region, and afterwards you will feel a big sense of accomplishment!
We arrived there at around 9 o’clock in the morning and it already felt warm (and there is a warning that if the temperatures exceed 36 degrees Celsius, the walk is closed after 11 AM just to be safe), but we also got to experience the true meaning of this valley! In some parts of it – mostly in the beginning – there were fierce gusts of wind, so getting too hot wasn’t a problem anymore. Keeping my hair in a proper condition, though – was 😀
So we did the full loop, with some stops along the path, mostly gazing at that read colour of the rock formations and the contrasting green trees and bushes. We also stopped at the Karu lookout for that insta shot – *worth it*!
I don’t think I have seen this much red colour in my life in nature – that’s where the name for Red Centre comes from, I guess!
A short stop for a photo and water break, and later on – down into the valley.
Almost done! See those thin lines on the mountain? It’s where the rain water flows, forming waterfalls – and it is said to be a spectacular sight. We didn’t manage to see this as the weather was sunny all the time. You know, I love my sun, so no complaints here 😉 But I would love to see mother nature doing all kinds of wonders in a place like this – so hopefully we will visit again one day!
Oh, and there’s Uluru, on our way back from Kata Tjuta…