Tourists rush to climb ancient Australian rock formation before it closes to the public

Jul 17 2019, 8:18 pm

Tourists are rushing to climb a sacred sandstone rock formation in central Australia known as Uluru — or Ayers Rock — before it permanently closes to the public.

According to a report from Australia’s ABC News, tourists are overcrowding Uluru while leaving behind their trash, trespassing, and illegally camping.

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The world-heritage listed site is sacred for the Anangu — the traditional Aboriginal landowners of Uluru. The Anangu have asked the public multiple times to respect their wishes and the rock’s cultural significance by not climbing it.

The requests have been disregarded by tourists who have been overcrowding Uluru, despite signage requesting visitors not to climb the sacred site.

 

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In November 2017, the traditional owners of the land and the Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park Board announced the decision to close the climb. The rule officially goes into effect on October 26, 2019.