Exploring the Olgas

The Red Centre of Australia promises visitors the chance to step back in time and experience some of the country’s most incredible natural scenery. Created by constantly changing weather conditions over millions of years, the landscape surrounding Uluru and the Red Centre is breath-taking.

And, while Uluru might be the most iconic landmark in the area, it is definitely not the only one. Nearby, Kata Tjuta, also known as the Olgas, sits pretty amongst the sparse and arid scenery. This monolith is made up of a series of huge, domed rock formations set just outside the historic and charming region of Alice Springs.

In total, the Olgas is comprised of 36 separate formations, all boasting different shapes and sizes. At one point in time, it is thought the structure was all joined together in one large piece of rock – just like Uluru – that had been weathered and worn down over millions and millions of years. The Olgas can be found 35 kilometres west of Uluru and are made of a slightly different rock type than their more famous neighbour.

Rising to more than 546 metres above ground level, the highest point of the structure is Mount Olga, a peak that sits more than 200 metres higher than Uluru. All in all, it measures around 22 kilometres in circumference, so it is again bigger (and somewhat more impressive) than Uluru.

Perhaps the best bit of the Olgas, though, are the deep crevices that weave between the jutting peaks. The views from down here are breath-taking and prehistoric, providing an up close and personal walk down memory lane.

The region is renowned for its series of meandering walks that take in some of the best views, though many have been closed in recent years to stop tourists from trampling the ancient landscape. Even so, visitors can still enjoy up to 7 kilometres of walking trails, including the popular Walpa Gorge Walk that, at 2.6 kilometres long, is one of the easiest to complete.

For something a bit more adventurous, visitors can explore the Valley of the Winds on a longer trail that takes in some amazing viewpoints. The walk itself takes around three hours and can get very hot, but the lush foliage that has collected between the spires of the Olgas is well worth seeing if you can. If you’d rather not walk in the searing heat, you can experience a portion of the views from the Kata Tjuta Dune viewpoint that’s located near the car park.

Explore the Olgas on our 3 Day Uluru Tour from Alice Springs.

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