Ayers Rock Airport
|Operator||Voyages Indigenous Tourism Australia Pty Ltd|
|Elevation AMSL||1,626 ft / 496 m|
Ayers Rock Airport (also known as Connellan Airport) (IATA: AYQ, ICAO: YAYE) is situated near Yulara, around 463 km (288 mi) (5 hrs drive) away from Alice Springs, Northern Territory, and 20 minutes drive from Uluru (Ayers Rock) itself. An average of just under 300,000 passengers pass through this airport each year.
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The original Connellan Airport at Uluru was provided by Edward Connellan, who founded Connellan Airways in 1942. The development of tourism infrastructure adjacent to the base of Uluru that began in the 1950s soon created adverse environmental impacts. It was decided in the early 1970s to remove all accommodation-related tourist facilities from near the base of Uluru and re-establish them outside the national park. In 1975, a reservation of 104 km2 (40 sq mi) of land beyond the national park's northern boundary, 15 km (9.3 mi) from Uluru, was approved for the development of a tourist facility, to be known as Yulara, along with a new airport. The new facilities became fully operational in late 1984. On 6 August 2000, an Ansett Australia Airbus A320 arrived from Auckland Airport in New Zealand, carrying the Sydney Olympic Torch for its inaugural Australian leg. From there, the torch was taken for a run around Uluru, followed by a formal reception.
Ayers Rock Airport has one main terminal for scheduled flights. The runway at Ayers Rock Airport is 2,599 m × 30 m (8,527 ft × 98 ft). It has a simple, single stage lighting system and T-VASIS. The largest aircraft that Ayers Rock Airport caters for is Boeing 737-800s operated by Virgin Australia.
|Jetstar Airways||Brisbane, Melbourne, Sydney|
|QantasLink||Alice Springs, Cairns|
Despite the availability of flights from major cities, the main users of the airport are light aircraft. In addition, there are a wide number of scenic flights that are offered by different private charter operators.
Media related to Ayers Rock Airport at Wikimedia Commons