When it comes to booking accommodation at Uluru, options range from camping beneath the stars to luxurious 5-star choices. Most accommodation is part of Aboriginal-owned Ayers Rock Resort, in the purpose-built town of Yulara, which is a 10-minute drive from Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park, and a 10-minute drive from the airport. A complimentary shuttle bus can take you to and from the airport, and anywhere else in the area.
Image Source: Tourism NT/Julian Kingma
So what options are there at Ayers Rock Resort?
At the top end of the scale, we have Longitude 131, which offers the ultimate luxury glamping experience. Located separate to the rest of the resort, elegant dune pavilions provide Australia’s only accommodation with views of both Uluru and Kata Tjuta. This kind of extravagance comes with a price tag; however, the cost includes meals, drinks, and a selection of guided tours.
Another 5-star option is Sails in the Desert, named for the soaring white sails which provide shade to the beautiful rooms and suites. Those lucky enough to stay at this premium accommodation can spend their days floating idly in the expansive swimming pool which is lined with gum trees, dining at exquisite restaurants and bars, immersing themselves in Aboriginal culture at the Mulgara Gallery, and indulging in some pampering at Red Ochre Spa, all without leaving the premises.
If the top options are a little above budget, look to the 4.5 star Desert Gardens Hotel, set amongst a lush oasis of towering gum trees alongside native flowers and shrubs. Deluxe ‘rock view’ rooms offer guests a fantastic view of Uluru, whilst shady garden view rooms are easier on the bank account. Alternatively, boutique-style Lost Camel Hotel offers fun, contemporary rooms, with decor that combines Aboriginal themes with urban trends. Guests can enjoy vibrant, brightly-coloured rooms and a refreshing swimming pool.
If you’re travelling as a family or a group, Emu Walk apartments may be the ideal accommodation for you. One and two-bedroom self-contained apartments offer all of the practicalities of home including a fully equipped kitchen. Decor represents a luxurious take on Indigenous design elements. Alternatively, for those seeking a more affordable option, take a look at Outback Pioneer Hotel and Lodge, which offers both hotel and basic motel-style rooms. Comfortable rooms are air-conditioned and have tea and coffee making facilities.
If you’re looking for the ultimate budget accommodation, or simply don’t want to pass up the opportunity to sleep beneath the desert stars, look no further than Ayers Rock Campground. Choose an air-conditioned cabin or a powered or unpowered site. Make use of facilities including a swimming pool, laundry, camp kitchen, BBQs, and a playground. Anyone staying at Ayers Rock Resort can make use of resort amenities including restaurants, shops, a bank, a day spa, a post office, an art gallery, a hair salon, and a souvenir shop.
Aside from Ayers Rock Resort, there are a number of roadhouses along the highway which affordable, basic accommodation, and many offer free camping. However, they are about an hour away from Uluru.