How to Get to Uluru in 2021

Share this article with your friends!

In this article we will explore how to get to Ayers Rock or Uluru. We will start with an overview of where Uluru is located and then go through all of the different transport options to get there, including flights to Uluru and Alice Springs, road trips to Uluru and the Ghan to Uluru.

Note that Uluru currently has reduced tourism capacity – flights, hotel accommodation, rental cars etc due to COVID19. This capacity is planned to progressively increase over the next 6-12 months, but ensure you check availability for each item before booking.

Join the Uluru Travel Planning Facebook Group!

You are welcome to join the Uluru Travel Planning Facebook Group – it is a great resource to enable you to ask questions about your upcoming trip to Uluru!

Join the Uluru Travel Planning Facebook Group

Disclaimer:  This article contains affiliate links.  If you book after clicking on one of these links then we may receive a small commission at no extra cost to you.

Uluru Travel Planning Resources

Check out our other articles below to help you plan your visit to Uluru, Alice Springs and Kings Canyon

Where is Ayers Rock or Uluru?

While for Australians it is usually a well known fact, for overseas visitors to Australia a common question is where is Ayers Rock located. The location of Uluru is in the center of Australia, as shown in the map of Ayers Rock below.

Views of Uluru

Nearest Town to Uluru

The closest town to Uluru is Yulara, which provides a range of accommodation at Ayers Rock including hotels, glamping, apartments and camping. All accommodation is managed by the Ayers Rock Resort, which also provides a range of service shops including a supermarket, dining and tourism services. A free shuttle bus connects each accommodation option and the main services area.

In the below map you can see an overview of the location of Uluru and Kata-Tjuta in relation to Yulara. Note that there are sealed roads to easily access each location.

  • Yulara to Uluru is 25 km / 16 mi
  • Uluru to Kata Tjuta is 55 km / 34 mi 

Airport at Ayers Rock

Ayers Rock Airport is the nearest airport to Uluru. If you are searching for flights to Ayers Rock the airport code is AYQ. Ayers Rock Airport is located 8.1 km / 5 mi north of Yulara, a journey by vehicle of 8 minutes, which is very convenient.

Flying to Uluru

Within Australia you can fly to Uluru directly from each of the major capital cities. During Australian school holidays there is no such thing as a cheap flight to Uluru – but if you can plan to visit at other times there are often great deals to Uluru available.

A great option to check out and book cheap flights to Ayers Rock is through Kiwi.com – they do great flight comparisons across all airlines to help you find the right flight option.

Click here to check out and book flights to Uluru through Kiwi.com


After you arrive at the Uluru airport, you can either catch the free shuttle bus to Yulara, and then use local tour and bus options to get around. Alternatively you can rent a car to get around Uluru.

Views of Uluru
Views of Uluru

Uluru Car Rental

At Uluru Airport there are only three major car hire companies, Hertz, Avis and Thrifty. Note that there are no campervan hire or 4WD options in Uluru/Yulara, the only option is to rent them in Alice Springs.

The easiest option to find the best car rental Ayers Rock is to check out the options on RentalCars.com. Rentalcars.com will help you to find the best priced car rental option, and then enable you to quickly complete your booking.

When you make your car rental Uluru booking through RentalCars.com you pay nothing up front and you can change or cancel your booking up to 48 hours prior to pickup without paying any amendment or cancellation fees.

Click here to compare options and book your Uluru Car Hire through RentalCars.com


Uluru Hop On Hop Off Bus Passes

Uluru Hop On Hop Off Buses provide a cost effective option to get transport to visit Uluru and Kata-Tjuta. This is a great option if you want to get around to all of the sights independently without needing to hire a car!

Uluru Hop On Hop Off Bus 1, 2 and 3 Day Passes, daily timetable typically includes sunrise, morning, midday, mid afternoon (not in summer) and sunset options with stops at Mutijulu Waterhole, Kuniya Piti, Mala Carpark and Cultural Centre.

There is a sunrise Kata-Tjuta option which includes include a Kata Tjuta sunrise viewing and either Walpa Gorge (1 hour) or Valley of the Winds (3 hour) Walk.

Click here to check out and book directly with Uluru Hop On Hop Off Bus Tours

Uluru Tours

There are so many different tour options available to explore Uluru that we have put together a dedicated article to help you understand and choose the options which will suit you best.

Click here to check out our Unforgettable Uluru Day Tours Article

Camels in the Australian Outback
Camels in the Australian Outback

Alice Springs Airport

Alternatively, many visitors to Uluru book flights to Alice Springs, and then use other transportation options to get to Uluru. You can also take advantage of the opportunity to explore Alice Springs and surrounds.

The road trip from Alice Springs to Uluru (Ayer’s Rock) on the fully sealed Stuart Highway and Lasseter Highway consists of a direct drive of 445km, 276 mi, 4:30 hrs in a standard vehicle.

Note that you do not need a 4WD vehicle to visit Uluru.

Flights to Alice Springs

A great option to check out and book Alice Springs flights is through Kiwi.com – they do great flight comparisons across all airlines to help you find the right flight option.

Click here to check out and book flights to Alice Springs through Kiwi.com

After you arrive at the Alice Springs airport, you can catch the airport shuttle bus to Alice Springs, and then use local tour and bus options to get around. Alternatively you can book a hire car or campervan in Alice Springs.

Welcome to Alice Springs
Welcome to Alice Springs

Hire Car Alice Springs

Alice Springs car hire options are readily available with multiple providers and you can choose either one way to Uluru or return rental options.

Check out the below car hire search block which compares options to get the best deal through DriveNow.com.au. You can cancel the Drivenow.com.au car hire anytime you like, and you do not need to pay until after your hire car period is finished. You can also choose to purchase a liability reduction policy.


Campervan Hire Alice Springs

Alternatively you can hire a campervan in Alice Springs (otherwise known as a motorhome or RV).

Check out the below campervan hire search block which compares options to get the best deal through DriveNow.com.au.

Options include both standard and 4WD camper rentals. You need to make the full payment to confirm your campervan booking, and also check out how much deposit you will need to pay upon collection of your vehicle.

Each provider also has specific cancellation options – ensure you check them out before finalising your booking. You can also choose between different levels of deposit reduction and liability reduction, and there also options to hire camping equipment and child seats.


Bus to Alice Springs

An alternative option to get to Alice Springs is using the Greyhound Bus Service – they run regular routes between Adelaide and Darwin, stopping at Alice Springs. From Alice Springs you can use options including car hire, campervan hire or bus transfers to get to Uluru.

The Ghan to Uluru

The Ghan train runs between Adelaide and Darwin, and there are options to hop off the train in Alice Springs and then explore the area and also to book holiday packages which include a visit to Uluru.

View over Alice Springs
View over Alice Springs

Bus from Alice Springs to Uluru

If you need to transfer between Alice Springs, Uluru and Kings Canyon, AATKings and Emu Run Experience offer a selection of luxury coach transfers as detailed below.

Alice Springs Uluru Bus Transfers
AATKings Alice Springs to Ayers Rock Bus Transfer
(departs ~7am, arrives ~1pm)
Click here to check out and book this transfer direct with AATKings
AATKings Uluru to Alice Springs Bus Transfer
(departs ~12.30-1pm, arrives ~7-7.30pm)
Click here to check out and book this transfer direct with AATKings
Emu Run Uluru to Alice Springs or Return Transfer
(departs Alice Springs at ~6am, arrives Ayers Rock Resort at ~11.45am)
(departs Ayers Rock Resort just after sunset, arrives in Alice Springs around midnight)
Click here to check out and book these transfers through Get Your Guide
AATKings Ayers Rock to Kings Canyon Transfer
(departs ~12.30-1pm, arrives ~5-5.30pm)
Click here to check out and book this transfer direct with AATKings
AATKings Kings Canyon Resort to Alice Springs Transfer
(departs ~11.15-11.45am, arrives ~6.30-7pm)
Click here to check out and book this transfer direct with AATKings
AATKings Kings Canyon to Ayers Rock Transfer
(departs ~11.15-11.45am, arrives ~5-5.30pm)
Click here to check out and book this transfer direct with AATKings

Road Trip to Uluru

If you are keen to do a road trip to Uluru, make sure you plan your trip well as it is a long way to travel! From Darwin and Adelaide is a shorter more direct trip as detailed below:

From Adelaide to Uluru

The road trip from Adelaide to Uluru is a journey of 1602 km / 995 mi and 16:30 hours driving time as per the below map.

From Darwin to Uluru

The road trip from Darwin to Uluru is a journey of 1964 km / 1220 mi and 19:30 hours driving time as per the below map.

However, if you plan to drive from the west or east coast of Australia on sealed roads, the trip will be a lot longer due to the location of the Stuart Highway as the only access road. Distances and driving times (without rest stops) are as follows.

From Brisbane to Uluru

For the road trip from Brisbane to Uluru there are two alternative routes you can take or do it as a loop. The northern route is via Tennant Creek and then heading south via Alice Springs. This route is a journey of 3461 km / 2150 mi and 36 hours driving time as per the below map.

Also check out our more detailed article about the road trip from Brisbane to Uluru at this link.

Note that if you enter Brisbane to Uluru into Google Maps, it shows a route via Boulia in outback Queensland – note that this route is only suitable for 4WD vehicles.

The southern route option from Brisbane to Ayers Rock is via Port Augusta and then heading north to Uluru. The route is a journey of 3001 km / 1865 mi and 32 hours driving time as per the below map.

From Sydney to Uluru

The road trip from Sydney to Uluru is a journey of 2841 km / 1765 mi and 29 hours driving time as per the below map.

From Canberra to Uluru

The road trip from Canberra to Uluru is a journey of 2635 km / 1637 mi and 27 hours driving time as per the below map.

From Melbourne to Uluru

The road trip from Melbourne to Uluru is a journey of 2327 km / 1445 mi and 24 hours driving time as per the below map.

From Perth to Uluru

The road trip from Perth to Uluru via Port Augusta is a journey of 3681 km / 2287 mi and 38 hours driving time as per the below map.

About the Stuart Highway

The Stuart Highway consists of mostly single carriageway roads with an 130 km/hr (80 mi/hr) speed limit outside of the towns along the way in accordance with the signage.  Be aware that the route is used by road trains which are trucks which haul multiple large trailers.  Therefore be very careful overtaking, and it is worthwhile to ensure you have a more powerful engine in your car to reduce your overtaking time past the road trains.

The route also has large expanses of unpopulated roads between towns, so ensure you pack extra water and food in your vehicle and also pack a first aid kit.  For more information about preparing for your trip see 5 Top Tips to Prepare Your Car for a Big Road Trip.

Be very careful that you do not drive at night on Central Australian roads as the major causes of road accidents are fatigue and collisions with animals which mainly occur between dusk and dawn.

Join the Uluru Travel Planning Facebook Group!

You are welcome to join the Uluru Travel Planning Facebook Group – it is a great resource to enable you to ask questions about your upcoming trip to Uluru!

Join the Uluru Travel Planning Facebook Group

Disclaimer:  This article contains affiliate links.  If you book after clicking on one of these links then we may receive a small commission at no extra cost to you.

Share this article with your friends!