GENERAL INFORMATION ABOUT NORTHERN
Australia is a big country covering 800
million hectares, an area equal to the size of Eastern
and Western Europe plus Scandinavia and is about the
same size as Mainland USA yet we only have the population
of the California coast, Holland or one large European
industrial area - 17 million. Imagine it!
We are an underdeveloped and under populated
country. The sheer vastness and the diverse landscapes
of Australia are difficult to describe - desert, snow,
tropical rainforests to mention just a few. Australia
is one of the most astonishing and beautiful continents
in the world.
Australians are, generally, very friendly
people, easy going and unregimented or, as we say, "laid
back". We hope this is something you will like about
Our diverse multi-cultural society is
reflected in all aspects of our every day life - food,
festivals, art etc. We are a mono-lingual culture with
an Australian version of English. Ask us to talk slower
- even North Americans and the English have trouble
with our Aussie English!
Come see and experience the real Australia
Mail can be received en route at the towns
throughout Australia. Remember if receiving mail via
a Post Office that they are only open on weekdays from
9.00 am to 5.00 pm being closed on weekends and public
All Mail should be addressed as follows -
Mr & Mrs, Ms. (Your name)
c/- (TOWN) Post Office
State. Postcode. Australia.
Australian seasons are the reverse of
the Northern Hemisphere's:
Spring - September to November
Summer - December to February
Autumn - March to May
Winter - June to August
April to September in northern and central Australia
- clear warm days, with cool to cold nights. At the
same time in the south - cool with occasional rain but
still some sunshine.
November to March is warm to hot everywhere;
high humidity and often heavy tropical rain in the north
(Darwin & Cairns areas) and temperatures over 40
C will be encountered and on some days temperatures
could reach 50 C.; warm to hot with mild nights in the
If travelling in north Queensland or Darwin
and the Top End in January, February or March be prepared
for periods of rain.
OTHER USEFUL INFORMATION:
Banking Hours: 9.30 am to 4.00 pm from Monday to Thursday
9.30 am to 5.00 pm on Friday.
Closed Saturday and Sunday.
Automatic Banking/Cashpoints/Hole in the Wall/ATM facilities
are available in most towns - fee apply.
The most widely recognised and accepted Credit Cards
in Australia are Mastercard (including Eurocard) Visa,
American Express and Diners Club are also widely accepted
in most major tourist centres. Other overseas cards
may present difficulties.
Travellers cheques are safe, convenient and can be
cashed at all banks and many of the larger hotels/motels.
Australian Travellers Cheques and larger denominations
Tipping: is optional and is not generally expected
in Australia. For exceptional service a gratuity is
appreciated. (Hotel and restaurant accounts do not include
Caravan parks ant hotels/motels at major centres will
have laundry and ironing facilities available.
220-250 volt and 50 cycles AC 3 pin plug.
Many Travel Insurance Policies are available and we
cannot recommend too strongly that you ask your arrange
this before you leave.
What is there to do in Alice Springs and
how long do I need there?
Alice Springs is often called the gateway
to the real outback and to Uluru - Ayers Rock. We suggest
at least one to two full days for touring Alice Springs.
In Alice Springs there is the Flying Doctor Museum and
the School of the air, just outside of town there is
the world renowned Desert Park to the Camel and Reptile
farms. There are cycling tracks into the mountains -
always take care and ask about security precautions
when visiting a new area..
Where should I start my trip from?
You may start and Alice Springs and end
back in Alice Springs, though it is possible to fly
into or out of the Uluru - Ayers Rock and for the companies
to arrange to pick up you from the Yulara resort or
airport to join the tour. One way rentals will occur
an extra charge in Uluru - Ayers Rock. Campervan and
motorhome and most 4WD companies only have depots in
How long do I need for touring?
Touring Ayers Rock, the Olgas and Kings
Canyon is quite a long trip around 1500km so we would
recommend a 3-7 day trip though if your budget is limited
and time short there are some 2 day trips that do the
three points of interest though not as extensively.
How far is Ayers Rock from Alice Springs?
452km and the highway is sealed all the
way with roadhouses and petrol stops every 100 to 150
How hot does it get?
From April to August the temperature is
around 20-30 degrees Centigrade and the evenings get
rather cold around May to July. From November to March
the temperature rises above 38 degrees Centigrade and
the evenings and very mild and refreshing pls check
weather site for more accuracy.
When is peak season?
Usually every second year, i.e., 2010 for
two to three weeks in October and also from June to
Are there dangerous animals in the area?
There are reptiles that can be considered
dangerous though they tend to avoid human contact.
Is it worth spending time in Alice Springs
or going to Uluru - Ayers Rock direct?
Alice Springs is the gateway to the true
outback of Australia and a wonderful place to see native
Australians and our laidback outback folk (see Ooraminna
Cattle station in our central Australian touring section).
What amount off time do I need in Alice
One to two full days as there are many attractions
around Alice Springs that are fascinating.
Uluru - Ayers Rock:
Can I climb Ayers Rock?
The traditional owners are concerned for
your safety in case you hurt and would feel responsible
and request you don't climb. Please
look at the official site for updates.
Where can I go to meet Aboriginals?
There are guided tours for an aboriginal
culture experience in Alice Springs, Katherine, Darwin
and other areas. Tours are from half day to two days.
Do I need a permit to enter Aboriginal Land?
The desert road called Mereenie Loop that
links Alice Springs to Kings Canyon via the Western
MacDonnell ranges is unsealed and a permit is available
from three outlets one in Alice Springs.
How far is Kings Canyon and Yulara from
Kings Canyon resort is 7km from the canyon.
Yulara Resort is app 20km from Ayers Rock. Yulara resort
is app 50 km from the Olgas.
What is Kings Canyon?
Kings Canyon referred to as Australia's
grand canyon is a wonderful sandstone chasm plunging
over 300 feet to the bottom hidden within the George
What are The Olgas?
The Olgas (Kata Tjuta) is 36 great rock
domes dominating the landscape with valley's nestling
Darwin and Northern Australia
What amount of time should I allow in Darwin
Around one to three days for local attractions.