If you’re on this page you’re probably planning a trip to Uluru. You’ve bought tickets, booked a tour and you’re getting ready to go but you’re not sure what to pack.
After all it’s a very harsh environment with big temperature swings and everyday amenities and shops are not always readily available. I’ve put together this packing list for your outback trip based off of my own trip to Uluru.
If you’re looking for advice on what to pack for Uluru, this is the guide for you.
Weather conditions in the Australian outback
Before you can know what to pack for a trip to Uluru, you need to know what the weather is like in the Australian outback.
Uluru summer weather
During the summer months (December to February in Australia) it’s scorching hot. Temperatures average around 30°C – 30°C degrees, but can go as high as 45°C.
Uluru winter weather
The weather in the Australian outback in winter is very extreme. Between May and September the temperature during the day will be fairly similar to summer ( around 30°C +) but it can then drop below 0°C at night.
Regardless of the season there is very little chance of rain in the Australian outback.
When you decide what to pack for your Uluru trip you will want to make sure you’re packing for both temperature extremes.
My Uluru packing list
This outback packing list is based off some of the things I brought with myself on my 3-day Uluru tour, and things I wish I had with me and ended up buying there.
It should only serve as indication, please check the weather forecast at the time of your trip and pack accordingly.
Hiking shoes: If you’re planning on adventuring around the outback and doing some of the famous hikes in Kata Tjuta and King’s Canyon, you will need a good pair of hiking shoes.
The terrain in this part of the Australian outback can be very rocky and dusty. A good pair of hiking shoes or sturdy trainers will make all the walking much easier.
Flip-flops: Uluru and its surroundings also offer a wide number of pools and swimming holes to combat the heat.
If like me you dislike putting closed shoes on with wet feet you might want to make your trip easier and bring an extra pair of sandals or flip-flops with you.
Long but airy pants: This is probably an exaggeration but with all the stories you hear about how everything in Australia can kill you, I didn’t want to be walking around one of the most hostile environments in the world in shorts.
Despite the heat I opted for long trousers; the loose and airy type so that they’d cover my legs without making me too hot.
Shorts: If you’re not scared of everything out there like me you will probably be more comfortable in shorts in the Australian heat.
Leggings: I always pack at least one pair of leggings with me regardless of where I’m going. They’re comfortable and take up very little space, whether it’s to wear them during a hike or in the evenings, you’ll find a use for them.
Long sleeved thermal shirts: Once you’re done with all the hiking and the sun starts setting you might start feeling a bit chilly. Bring a long sleeved thermal shirt with you so that you can cover up.
Warm hoodie for the night: Personally I don’t think I’m the kind of person that suffers the cold, however I was glad I packed an extra hoodie for my Uluru trip.
Even if we were sleeping in a tent I wore a hoodie over my long sleeved thermal and it was just about enough to keep me warm.
Wide rim hat: With the heat you will want something to keep your head in the shade, and what better than a very Crocodile Dundee style hat?
Beanie: If you’re visiting in winter, you’ll want to bring a hat also for when it gets cold at night.
Headlamp: Being a city girl born and raised I haven’t often had the opportunity to see pitch black skies like the ones in Uluru. Being completely away from light pollution you realise just how dark the night can get.
You can also use the flashlight on your phone, however if you want your hands to be free (eg. if you’re going to a bush toilet) a headlamp will make things easier.
Fly net: Be ready to be swarmed by flies. No amount of pre-trip reading could have prepared me for the sheer amount of flies in the outback. You will see people wearing fly nets over their hats to keep the flies away from their face.
You’ll think they look ridiculous. Until flies start walking in your nose, mouth and ears. Then you’ll wish you also had a fly net over your hat.
Other useful things
Fly repellent cream: Personally I didn’t get a fly net as I found it a bit too ridiculous and I wanted to get pretty photos for Instagram (priorities right?) so I went for fly repellent cream.
It isn’t 100% effective and you need to reapply quite regularly but it’s a good alternative and will keep most of the flies away.
Reusable water bottle: Needless to say, in hot and dry climates you need to stay hydrated. There will be opportunities to refill your water bottle for example at camps in the evening, but there might not be a shop to buy water bottles at so make sure you have your own that you can refill.
Swimwear: During our outback trip we had a couple of opportunities to go for swims at swimming pools or watering holes, so make sure to bring a bikini or swimming shorts with you!
Few things suck more than sitting under the sun in the Australian outback heat and watching other people swim while you can’t because you don’t have swimwear with you.
So do yourself a favour and pack a bikini, it doesn’t take up much space anyway.
Sunscreen: It goes without saying; it’s very sunny, make sure to wear sunscreen. Especially in this part of Australia the sun is very dangerous, make sure to protect yourself with a high factor SPF.
Lip balm: The desert can get very dry, make sure to bring some lip balm with you to avoid dry and cracked lips.
Fast drying towel: Whether it’s for a bush shower or after a swim in a watering hole, I like to carry fast drying towels with me since they’re small, take up little space and dry really fast.
Another useful travel accessory to carry with you anywhere (not just the Australian outback) are money belts. Check out these top 10 travel money belts reviewed to find one that suits you best.
Final thoughts on what to wear in Uluru
Have you been to Uluru before? What did you take with you? Let me know in the comments below! This packing list for the Australian outback is based on the things I brought myself during my trip to Uluru.
If there is something else you think would be useful to add let me know! If you’re looking for more Australian outback inspiration, check out this Australian outback camping experience.
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