Coober Pedy to Yulara – Seeing Uluru finally

The last big day of driving before finally getting to see Uluru, the big rock we had travelled so far to see. Out of all the days we had travelled so far this was to be the shortest. Just seven and half hours of driving. We left Coober Pedy really early. The sun was just starting to rise and I took the following photo just after leaving the place we were staying.

Sadly this was the only time we saw colours like this. They were so stunning. I have to say the colours and light in Coober Pedy were out of this world.

We had been told we could get coffee at the bakery at 6 am. We pulled up there to see that they weren’t open. However, they did let us come in and get coffee. We were so grateful. I think they only did it because we were getting takeaway.  So in case they read this, thank you so much.

After the coffee, we headed out of town. I knew I would like to come back and take more photos there.

On the road

From Coober Pedy to Yulara we had to drive for 733 km. Around 7 and a half hours, as I said previously.

We hadn’t really planned on seeing many things along the way this time. Though there were some things, but we just photographed them from the moving car.

The colours of the dirt around Coober Pedy reminded me of those sand sculptures you used to be able to buy. There were so many different colours. Then in a different light, they changed again.


One thing we had hoped to see on the way was The Ghan. It is a train that goes from Adelaide to Darwin and back. I have always wanted to go on it, but it is so expensive. That seems to be a theme with travelling in Australia. Everywhere you go costs so much money and then they wonder why Australians like to go overseas instead.

Anyway here is The Ghan.

It goes along with its 37 odd carriages.


We did stop when we got to the South Australian/Northern Territory border. I mean you have to do those sorts of things. Going from one state to another in Australia can seem like we are going from one country to another sometimes.

This border was better than the Victoria/South Australian border. That one was so boring that I missed it. There was hardly anything there.

When we first started driving in Northern Territory we saw a sign that said when not posted the speed limit was 110 kph. That had seemed pretty standard, but then we saw a sign that said the speed limit was 130 kph. That is around 81 mph. We couldn’t believe it and were almost too scared at first to do it. Then we just went for it. I love it. It isn’t very often you are allowed to travel that fast. I mean on most roads in Victoria if you were travelling at that speed and got caught by the police it is almost an automatic dismissal of your driver’s license.

Getting closer

The landscape started changing and there were some things to see. Some old places to stop that didn’t like they had been operational for a long time.

Mount Conner

There is a big rock on the way and I can understand why many people might think it is actually Uluru. I know the shape of it and knew this was something else. We discovered it was Mount Conner.

It is on private land so you can’t go and see it. Which is a pity, but really when you come out this way there is another rock that everyone else wants to see.

First sight

I don’t remember how far from Yulara when we first spotted “the rock”. I’m talking about Uluru of course, or for those that may know it by the name given to it by the colonialists. Ayers Rock.

I don’t know how far away we were when this was taken, but it was so exciting to finally lay my own eyes on this legendary rock that I have heard about my whole life. It is famous really.

When I was a child I was given a book of beautiful places in Australia and Uluru was in it. It has been a dream to travel to every place in it, but I don’t know if that will happen.

I really shouldn’t post photos of the eastern side of Uluru as it is sacred and they ask people not to. Though this is the only one I will show as it is the first photo I took. I did take other photos and I’m told you can use them as long as they aren’t for commercial purposes, but I think I will respect them and just post this. I did take video of the side when driving around it, but I won’t be showing that to anyone.


Before I go any further I feel this is a good place to say this.

I would like to acknowledge the traditional custodians of the land, the Anangu. I recognised their continued connection to the land of this amazing place and acknowledge they are the traditional owners. I would also like to thank them for sharing the land with us. 


Once we arrived at Yulara we realised we were falling into the trap of tourism big time. What an expensive place. It is really just a series of resorts and they all charge an arm and a leg.

We were staying at the Lost Camel in rooms that were costing almost $300 a night each and they were very basic rooms. No desks, so it was really hard to work on photos. I think it was the first time I have stayed in a motel or hotel that did not have a desk in it. So strange. I hated the place, but I will fill you in more about it in another post.

We headed to a place that we thought would be cheap to eat but getting fish and chips that cost $32 we knew it was going to be an expensive trip.

Going out for sunset

We couldn’t help ourselves. We got there early enough that we thought we could head out and take some photos. We headed out towards Uluru. We got to the gate where we had to show our gate pass.

We weren’t sure about this or how it worked. We both bought one, $38 each for 3 days. In hindsight, we could have just got one. You just needed one in the car to get through the gate. Not that it mattered, giving money for parks is a good thing. I wish they would do it in Victoria it might help the parks people to maintain them.

Closer to Uluru

We pulled off the road and quickly took this image of Uluru. I took it with my phone. I used my phone quite a bit for this trip. I will have to do a post on that as well.

This wasn’t our destination, however, and we did a u-turn after this and headed for the place we wanted to do a sunset.

Kata Tjuta

This is pronounced kata juta. It used to be known as the Olga’s.

It was surprising that in many of the places where they recommend you do sunrise or sunset the sun is behind you. You get the last of the light on the landmark. We had a great night at the Kata Tjuta.

Here are three images I took there. Two were taken with the Fujifilm GFX 50S II and the 35mm lens for it. It was my first time really using it. The last photo was one of the last for the evening and was taken with my X-S10 and the Tamron 18-300mm lens.

They were so stunning. I never got to see them again, I had some tummy troubles here, unfortunately. We headed back after this for dinner and then an early night.

Coober Pedy to Yulara

I have done another video for the road trip. This one is short. I hope you enjoy it. (If the video doesn’t look like it works just click on it, no idea what is happening.)

I’m leaving it there for now. More from Yulara in my next post. Have you been somewhere that you have always wanted to go? How did it feel?

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  1. Just FYI. For months now, whenever I click your gravatar, it takes me to Free Dating Apps Reviews ??
    I found your site from google search.

    1. Oh, I will have to check that out, I wonder if it is for the older one. Thanks Amy.

      PS, I tried to change it, can you please test it Amy and see if brings you here now.

    1. It is quite amazing, the Kata Tjuta, though I think you don’t really get a sense of the size until you see it from above. I took video of the flight over both, but haven’t put it together yet. Thank you Chris.

  2. Awesome and beautiful pictures. The sky hues are really out of the world as you said. Reading this felt like I was travelling along with you…also the video in the end is lovely😊

    1. Thank you. The skies there are quite amazing. Thank you so much for that feedback, I was hoping people would feel that way.

    1. Yeah it kinda was, I suppose, I don’t think there are many Australians who wouldn’t want to see that place. You are right, people, I think, think that because we only have 26 million people living here that the country can’t be too big, but it is almost the same size as the US. Thanks RJ

  3. Wow, $300 a night for a basic room, and one without a desk or table. That’s out of sight. Then, $32 for fish and chips, hope they gave enough food for the price.

    Kata Tjuta, beautiful images you got.

    Any thought of going back?

    1. Yeah, it was so surprising. YOu kind of think at $300 a night you will get something special, but no you don’t. The fish and chips was okay, big on the chips and salad and small on the fish sadly.
      Thank you, it was a great sunset that night.
      No, I don’t think so. I really hate the tourist trap thing, and that would keep me from going, plus all the driving, not sure I could do it again. Ask me again when I get to the post about Coober Pedy. Thanks David.

    1. Thank you Laura, I think this place is really known for their sunset and sunrise photos. They tell you in lots of places where to get the best shots.

  4. The scenery there is very beautiful, Leanne, it reminds me of the desert that Las Vegas is in. Some of the freeways outside of Las Vegas have an 80mph speed limit.

    1. I wondered if it would be similar. Do you get all the brush growing on it as well. I was surprised that there was vegetation growing all over it. How cool is it to be able to drive at that speed legally? lol. I loved it. Though I think if they had it lower it would be more dangerous as it would seem so slow and put you to sleep. Thank you John.

    2. They are good for that. We have massive road trains, trucks with up to 4 trailers on them, driving on the roads all the time and they probably do the most damage to the roads.

  5. Thanks for sharing your beautiful photos of Australia. I have only seen long ago images of the land in movies and periodicals where kangaroo were included. Blessings.

    1. You’re welcome and thank you. Some of the things here are quite amazing. Strangely, which surprised us, there are no kangaroos apparently around Uluru.

    2. No kangaroo? Awful! The indicators for the marsupials is that they are in zoos, used for food or both. 🥵

      I love the aboriginal land, people their mystical, ancient history and the Irish folklores, myths and history. What a cultural blend of mythologies. Thanks again for sharing your exotic journey Leanne.

    3. There are wild kangaroos in Australia, you just can’t find them around Uluru. We have a mob that like to hang out near my house down the hill. They still on the hill and watch us humans on gorgeous sunny days.

      There is that too, though we didn’t really go looking for too much of that. We did more in Alice Springs.

    4. There are many Melbourne bloggers on WordPress. But I have never had a glimpse of the land as you’ve shared from a tourist perspective. You are the better more knowledgeable tourist being a native. Thanks again Leanne.

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