Freak storm sees waterfalls cascading down Australia's most famous rock

A huge Christmas night storm saw more than 23cm fall in 24 hours sending water cascading down the enormous sandstone rock

Freak storm sees waterfalls cascading down Australia's most famous rock

Aerial view of Uluru (Ayer's Rock) Northern Territory, Australia, 23-Apr-2014. Image: Anthony Devlin PA Archive/PA Images

A record amount of rainfall has turned one of Australia's most famous and driest attractions into a series of spectacular waterfalls.

Uluru - formerly known as Ayers Rock - in Central Australia normally gets an average of just 22cm of rain a year.

But a huge Christmas night storm saw more than 23cm fall in 24 hours sending water cascading down the enormous sandstone rock and turning small canyons into raging torrents.

Described as a twice-a-century event by the Australian Bureau of Meteorology, the downpour was photographed by school teachers, Bianca and Lee Hewes.

The heavy rain has caused flash flooding, shutting Uluru national park and leading to evacuations in nearby communities.

Northern Territory police told Australia's ABC Network that up to 25 houses were flooded in the town of Kintore, near the border with the state of Western Australia.

Uluru lies 335km from the nearest large town, Alice Springs, and is sacred to the Pitjantjatjara Anangu, the Aboriginal people of the area.

It is visited by up to 500,000 tourists each year.