Along the roads leading to Jaribu are the famous Kakadu termite mounds; some are even four meters high. A few miles past the north entrance of the park you will find them and are known by the name of cathedrals. Scientifically speaking, they are called epigean nests which protrude from the ground. They are also in Litchfield Park.
Without a doubt, the Jumping Crocodile Cruise is one of the things you can't miss in Kakadu. We're talking about saltwater crocodiles (also called estuary crocodiles) and lovingly called "salties" in Australia. Normal crocodiles, like the ones in the Nile, only live in fresh water but these massive Australian beasts also live and swim in the ocean. They can often appear in coastal estuaries but their favorite habitat is the coastal rivers. The one catch is that humans are not off the menu for these enormous reptiles and attacks are more frequent than we'd like the think. Your best bet is to pay attention to the warnings you can see in the river areas. You can take these stupendous cruises all along the road from Darwin to Kakadu. It's a great chance to see these creatures up close in the wild. The plan is to find one of these things and bait it with a piece of meat from the edge of a boat. Depending on how hungry they are at the moment, their leaps out of the water are more or less amazing.
The tropical northern part of Darwin City is the capital of the Australian Northern Territory, a huge area from the Red Desert (Uluru, etc.), to the north coast of the continent. It's almost 2000 kilometers long from end to end, and the climate differences are incredible. So much so that the world's driest desert changes to a tropical coast. I was surprised at part of the country. The Australian cities are places that are carefree, but the pace of life here is closer to that of the Caribbean than to the pace of life in the city of Melbourne. There is intense tropical heat and a benign climate. Also one can have the feeling of isolation from the rest of the country and its status as the closest city to Asia. You also need to see their lovely sunsets, inviting you to relax more than anything else. While we admired the sky we could see some kids ve were juggling in a park. It was a moment that was really photogenic and we went home with some great memories of the sunset.
Although it's not as famous as the nearby Kakadu, many travellers prefer Litchfield Park. Its waterfalls and trails make it an ideal spot to visit - a set of lush forests crossed by streams that flow into beautiful waterfalls. It is very nice, perfect for hiking and the chance to run into the odd wallaby or rainbow bird. Upon entering we were struck by the huge termite mounds, some up to two metres high. They all face the same direction, to minimise the impact of the sun. One of the most famous and popular sights in the park is the Wangi Falls, a waterfall flowing into a large lake where you can swim. There is a path along the lake where we spotted several flying foxes. The scenery is spectacular, with several possible routes for a walk, including the chance to visit an old abandoned tin mine. The more daring can complete the Tabletop Track, a distance of 39 kilometres around the park. Before entering the park, you can collect information and maps at the visitor center. There is a park area only accessible to 4x4s. You can find camping spots throughout the park. There is no admission charge to visit.
Mindil Beach is a quintessential place in the city of Darwin. It's a must for two reasons: the Sunset Market, and for being one of the places with the best sunsets in the world. The market is open on Thursdays and Sundays and there you can find a variety of Aboriginal art, including the iconic Didgeridoo. There are also dozens of international food stands, handicrafts, clothes, and plenty of live music. Although at first we were a bit skeptical and thought it would be just another sunset, we were pleasantly surprised. The beach gradually fills up with people, I mean whole families that come while chairs prepared for the show. Hundreds of people facing the beach and staring at the horizon. The sun begins to set, as the sky is filled with colors and tones that I've never seen anywhere else. We were not disappointed at all and would recommend it to everyone.Without a doubt, there is no better way to spend a Sunday afternoon in Darwin to going to Mindil Beach.
Darwin is the most common entry point for Kakadu National Park and it is common to drive from there, since it is not far away . In about 2 hours we reach the entrance of the PN and there are a few worthwhile stops. The best is the amazing Crocodile Cruise (Jumping Crocodile Cruise) that can be done along the way, but this deserves and requires a separate part. Besides this, it is worth stopping to admire the huge termite mounds that can be seen. It is amazing what they can do if you give them a little time and raw materials. The termite mounds we saw were about 3 feet high, and this is supposed to be a modestly sized one compared to what you might see. By the way, watch the presence of crocodiles on the road, as warned one of the most curious signs across the country :-)
Located in Litchfield Park. We took a dip in the natural pool at the base of Wangi Falls, the most famous sight in the park. At the base of the falls there is a lake of hot springs naturally heated by the sun. You can enjoy a hike through the rainforest, or take a 4x4 to the other nearby waterfalls, Sandy Creek Falls and Surprise Falls.
You have to go down a path of just over one kilometre through the forest, part of Florence Falls, to reach Buley Rockhole, an irregular succession of small natural pools among the rocks of Florence Creek. The atmosphere is festive, with whole families filling the pools, and intrepid young people diving from the rocks into the small lagoons. Definitely worth a visit!
There are 135 steps leading to the natural swimming pool next to the waterfall surrounded by tropical forest. After a refreshing dip, you'll have to climb back up! But along the way there are plenty of opportunities to pause and admire the scenery or watch the wallabies that fill the area, seemingly indifferent to visitors.
Not to be missed, especially if you're travelling with children! This park raises awareness of crocodiles (several hundred individuals are kept on the premises), and allows you to feed them at certain times of day. A guided tour explains the characteristics of different species, and how to hold the muzzled young ones. There are also plenty of other animals, mainly local species - birds, monkeys, cats, turtles, snakes, buffalo ... I recommend visiting the Museum in the main building, which is full of information on the biology and the behaviour of crocodiles. If you like being in contact with these living fossils, you can find some crocodile skin products on sale in the shop (bags, belts, the whole skin, etc).
It was Second World War soldiers who found the hot springs that flow here, and they planted the palm trees and developed the site for an R&R spot. However, it didn't last long: when officers found the soldiers' discovery, they moved them to a more remote headquarters, and the thermal baths became reserved for officers only. Today, Mataranka, located in Elsey National Park, is a very popular tourist resort. A campsite close to the springs welcomes visitors, who have the chance to rent canoes to navigate the river.
The annual two-week Darwin Festival (usually in August) is meant to discover the art and culture of the region's aboriginal peoples. I had the opportunity to visit for a day and there were many specialized art galleries. Several buses and excursions make the trip and go through the different stores. There are many concerts, markets, and exhibitions organized in the city center or nearby. You shouldn't miss the evening presentation of Indian dances in the botanical garden, with decorations created for the occasion. It's a dazzling experience and is perfectly integrated by the dancer's representation.
They have a large, well-maintained collection of snakes and reptiles and friendly and knowledgeable staff. Kids will definitely enjoy a visit here! Burt, the famous crocodile from Crocodile Dundee, lives here. You can feed the reptiles and crocodiles, or swim with them in the "Cage of Death" (we didn't). It's a bit expensive, though: $30 per person, and you can see everything in a couple of hours.
The most exciting activity in Crocosaurus Cove. The most daring can dive with enormous saltwater crocodiles, finding themselves a few centimetres from the animals. Despite the security of the structure, the proximity to the beasts and their unpredictable reactions guarantee high levels of adrenaline.
In the heart of Nitmiluk Park, we can find a series of 13 gorges carved by the river through the rocky cliffs. The best way to explore the gorges is on the water, whether aboard a small motorboat, or better yet, by renting a canoe. You can enjoy the beauty of the area as well as admire the (harmless) freshwater crocodiles who dive in the temperate waters here.
There are often problems between travelers and the Aboriginal communities of Australia, who are trying to preserve their customs and traditions, but the Limilngan-Wulna Reserve in Litchfield Park is trying to improve matters. After a welcome from the head of the reservation, guests can enjoy an explanation of aboriginal hunting and cooking techniques, and see the traditional manufacture of baskets and a demonstration of musical instruments, followed by a farewell dance at the end of the visit.
So you're ready to discover the Northern Territory! Now, all that's left is figuring out what to do in Darwin. Well, you've come to the right place! Despite its isolated location, Darwin is a popular city among tourists and you'll find no shortage of interesting Darwin attractions.
The area's national parks are probably the most important things to see in Darwin. Within a two hours' drive, you can visit the spectacular forests of Litchfield or even the spectacular Kakadu National Park where you can unlock your inner Crocodile Dundee. That's right, crocodile cruises are one of the most popular Darwin activities and you can see crocs up to 20 feet long!
However, natural parks aren't the only places to visit in Darwin. There are tons of interesting attractions in Darwin itself like the huge George Darwin botanical gardens or the East Point Military Museum. This museum is located in a bunker and highlight's Darwin's involvement in the Second World War and the attack on the city's port by the Japanese. For history-lovers, it's one of the absolute best things to do in Darwin.
With all this fun stuff to do in Darwin, you're probably working up an appetite. In that case, head down to the beautiful waterfront and check out its lively fresh seafood restaurants, shops, and bars.