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Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park, Australia

Ayers Rock, Uluru to the Aboriginals, is not only a UNESCO World Heritage site, but has spiritual significance to the Anangu people. Many people consider their trip to Uluru a mecca, as the spiritual stories from the aboriginal people are moving to anyone. The aboriginal people consider Uluru to be created by the creation ancestors and each geological feature reveals a story about their ancestors, told verbally through generations. Visitors are encouraged to start their trip at the Visitor’s Center as the ancestral stories are all there and can provide a what-to-see guide.

Walking to the top of Uluru is frowned upon and discouraged. The Anangu people consider the route sacred as it is only to be taken by the Mala ancestors. There are signed posting this and other relevant information (safety and environmental information) at the base of the climb. If you are looking for a good walk with excellent views, try walking around the base of the rock. The base walk is 10.6km and can take around 4 hours to complete.

The national park is home to more than just Uluru. Kata Tjuta, or The Olgas, is another beautiful domed rock formation just west of Uluru. Not as popular as it’s prominent neighbor, Kata Tjuta holds spiritual significance to aboriginal men. Hiking paths are provided (and must not be diverted from) through and around the domes, which leads to unique views of the wildlife, foliage, and the domes themselves.

Credit has to be give to the aboriginal people for their care of the now national park as Kata Tjuta and Uluru both seem untouched in millennia. It is easy to imagine animals of any kind making this place their home, and it’s understandable why it is a spiritual place to the aboriginal people.