|Alatai Holiday Apartments||McMinn St, Darwin City NT||7:00am|
|Argus Apartments||6 Cardona Court, Darwin||7:00am|
|Argus Hotel Darwin||13 Shepherd Street, Darwin||7:00am|
|Caltex Berrimah||Stuart Highway, Berrimah||7:30am|
|Chilli's Backpackers||69 Mitchell Street, Darwin||7:00am|
|Crocodilly Inn||97 Mitchell St, Darwin City||7:00am|
|Cullen Bay Serviced Apartments||26 Marrina Blv, Darwin||7:30am|
|Darwin Central Hotel||21 Knuckey Street, Darwin||7:00am|
|Darwin City Edge(Vitina Studio)||38 Gardens Road, Darwin||7:00am|
|Darwin YHA - Melaleuca ob Mitchell||52 Mitchell St, Darwin City||7.00am|
|Dingo Moon Lodge||88 Mitchell Street, Darwin||7:00am|
|Double Tree by Hilton Hotel||122 The Esplanade, Darwin||7:00am|
|Doubletree by Hilton Esplanade||116 The Esplanade, Darwin||7:00am|
|DownUnder Hostel||4 Harriet Pl, Darwin City||7.00am|
|Frogshollow Backpackers||27 Lindsay Street, Darwin||7:00am|
|Gecko Lodge Hostel||146 Mitchell Street, Darwin||7:00am|
|Hilton Darwin||32 Mitchell Street, Darwin||7:00am|
|Mantra on the Esplanade||88 The Esplanade, Darwin||7:00am|
|Mantra Pandanas||43 Knuckey Street, Darwin||7:00am|
|Novotel Darwin||100 The Esplanade, Darwin||7:00am|
|Oaks Elan||31 Woods Street, Darwin||7:00am|
|Palms City Resort||64 The Esplanade, Darwin||7:00am|
|Ramada Suites Zen Quarter||6 Carey Street, Darwin||7:00am|
|The Bottle-O Pit Lane||2/2 Middleton St, Yarrawonga||7:30am|
|Travelodge Mirambeena Resort||64 Cavengh Street, Darwin||7:00am|
|United Petrol Station in Parap||209 Stuart Hwy, Parap||7:30am|
|Value Inn||50 Mitchell Street, Darwin||7:00am|
|Vibe Hotel Darwin Waterfront||7 Kitchner Drive, Darwin||7:00am|
|Youth Shack||69 Mitchell Street, Darwin||7:00am|
The Kakadu National Park is one of the most incredible swathes of scenery in the whole of Australia. The bold escarpment is made up of lush forests, sprawling woodland, and plenty of lakes, billabongs, and waterfalls to cool off in and enjoy the views from.
On many tours around Kakadu, you’ll be exposed to the vast amount of nature that calls the area home, stopping off at various prominent landmarks, like cascading waterfalls, ancient creeks, and eggshell-smooth billabongs.
The White Lily billabong is one of the most prominent watering holes in the area, flanked by lush scenery and promising a hearty dose of natural beauty if you venture to its shores during your time at Kakadu.
While on the water, you can enjoy a nature-based cruise, complete with an exceptional amount of birdlife and stunning views.
As you glide along the smooth water, keep your eyes peeled for native crocodiles that lurk beneath the surface and learn more about their fascinating history in the region, their unique habitat, and their behavioural habits. As well as spotting these prehistoric creatures in the water, you can also soak up the dizzying array of nature that flanks the billabong, spreading out into the picturesque landscape of the national park.
The billabong itself is a beautiful display of vibrant white lilies (hence its name), and offers respite from the surrounding forests. The unique scenery is made even more eye-catching with the gnarled trees that burst through the water’s surface and soar skywards, casting a quirky silhouette against the horizon.
These trees, and the surrounding forests are home to some of Kakadu’s most prominent bird life. Native species rub shoulders with prehistoric birds, many of which call the area home for the year. Keep your eyes peeled for colourful wings and the distinct sounds of some of the region’s most famous birds.
White Lily billabong is surrounded by fascinating landmarks that are well worth visiting, too. To experience everything Kakadu has to offer, make sure you take the short hike up to the nearby Budjimi Lookout, where you can take a refreshing dip in the plunge pool that sits at the base of Jim Jim Falls.
Elsewhere, you can marvel at spectacular views of the park from various other lookouts, and enjoy the mesmerising cascade of the numerous waterfalls that are tucked away throughout Kakadu.
Visiting the White Lily billabong gives you the chance to dive head first into the stunning scenery and selection of wildlife that Kakadu has on offer.
The ancient land of Kakadu brings thousands of years of history to the modern day with its natural scenery and eclectic collection of centuries-old rock art. It is one of the most impressive spots to see rock art in Australia, and the artwork has helped it become a World Heritage site.
Some paintings date back 20,000 years, providing one of the longest historical records of any group of people in the entire world.
The most prominent galleries where you can still witness rock art are at Ubirr, Nourlangie, and Nanguluwur. At these spots, there are plenty of pieces to discover and explore, taking you back in time and giving you an insight into how the local indigenous people have lived and evolved over the years.
Though these three sites are the most popular, there are thought to be around 5,000 Aboriginal sites in Kakadu, consisting of shelters complete with stone tools, grindstones, and ceremonial ochre.
What Rock Art Can You See at Kakadu?
The rock shelters around Kakadu provided homes for hundreds of Aboriginal families throughout history, and today you can see etchings of their lives on the walls.
Expect to see drawings of the fish and animals that the tribes hunted, including Barramundi, catfish, mullet, turtles, possums, and wallabies.
There’s also plenty of unique X-ray art on show, where you can see animal bones and organs on their exteriors. Elsewhere, you can examine works that show contact with the first buffalo hunters in the 1880s, as well as paintings of the well-known Namarrgarn Sisters – two cunning spirits who are believed to live in the stars and make people sick.
Explore further, and you’ll discover a picture of the Rainbow Serpent that dates back more than 23,000 years, and depicts the powerful “Boss Lady” known to the local Gagudju tribe as Garranga’rrelito.
Kakadu is a haven of history, bringing together centuries upon centuries of local Aboriginal life all in one spot. As you wander around the breath-taking scenery, you’ll get to dig deeper and deeper into the fascinating past that imbues the region, learning more about the traditions of the local tribes, and discovering how life has evolved for them over the centuries.
Keep your eyes peeled for some of the major paintings that flank the sandstone walls of the region as you explore the various different ways of life that characterised the region over time.
Kakadu National Park is one of the Northern Territory’s best-loved treasures. Boasting a landscape filled with rocky escarpment and cascading waterfalls, it’s the perfect place to discover the natural beauty of Australia.
The Twin Falls are one of the most famous sites within the stunning confines of the park, and are one of the major reasons a lot of travellers head to the region.
Taking pride of place in the World Heritage Listed region, there are numerous ways to see the Falls – expect incredible views and a surreal swathe of scenery the sprawls out in every direction.
You can grab tickets for the popular boat shuttle at the nearby Bowali Visitor Centre, but you can also opt to explore the falls via the on-site boardwalk that has been created especially for prime viewing purposes.
If you’re visiting during the dry season, it’s worth noting that the waterfall will slow to a trickle. It might not be as impressive as during the wet season, but it’s still a pretty sight to see.
Seeing Twin Falls
The most popular way to see Twin Falls is via the boat shuttle. This cruise takes you along the picturesque length of the river and lets you see the falls themselves from a unique perspective.
This particular form of exploration was put in place to protect the surrounding wildlife. It allows the resident crocodiles and birds to nest and feed in peace without having to contend with crowds of visitors on the little beaches that flank the banks.
Alternatively, (or in addition to), you can also walk to the top of Twin Falls. The steep climb begins in the visitor’s car park and takes a couple of hours to complete – it’s a 6km return trip.
Once you reach the top, you’ll be exposed to breath-taking views of the Twin Falls Gorge below. Here, there is the chance to swim and cool off after your amble to the top.
If you follow the creek along for another kilometre or so, you’ll find a couple of bigger pools dotted around. These mark the perfect spot for a picnic and a relaxing sit down, though you may find you’ll have to share the scenery with other visitors as it can get quite busy during peak season.
Twin Falls is a must-see if you’re in Kakadu National Park. This picturesque waterfall boasts ancient scenery, and gives you the chance to enjoy mesmerising views across the surroundings.
Koolpin Gorge is a secluded paradise that not many visitors get the chance to see in person. Also dubbed Jarrangbarni – it’s Aboriginal name – it provides a little slice of heaven in the heart of Kakadu.
So why do not many people get to see it?
There are three reasons for this. Firstly, it is only accessible by 4WD. It’s not a particularly difficult drive, but you will need a 4WD to get there. Secondly, there is just a bush campsite near the gorge that has no facilities apart from pit toilets.
And, finally, there are no specific walking tracks that are marked, which makes it difficult to get to the lookouts and boardwalks. From the gorge itself, the walk takes you through real wilderness scenery, and the terrain can be incredibly rough.
Despite that, Koolpin Gorge has plenty to offer its visitors – in fact, because of its rough beauty and difficult-to-reach scenery, it’s an incredibly special place to explore.
There are plenty of adventurous pursuits to get stuck into, including bushwalking, which takes you through some rough and wild scenery to spectacular lookout points, wildlife watching, with many native species of plant, animals, and birds calling the area home, and swimming. There are a number of relaxing swimming holes to enjoy in the secluded peace and quiet.
To experience everything Koolpin has to offer, you’ll want to spend at least two nights in the area, so you can discover some of the hidden trails and enjoy some of the more secluded hotspots in the area. For the pick of the bunch, arrive early to choose a shady spot to camp!
If you’re looking to kick-start your time in Koolpin by soaking up some of the incredible beauty on offer, start by heading to the Pink Pool before venturing on into the wilderness and up the rocky cliff face to the Black Pool, which can be reached via an unmarked track. Once you emerge at the top, you’ll be greeted by breath-taking scenery, stunning views, and even more relaxing rock pools to cool off in.
For the intrepid explorer, Koolpin Gorge is the perfect place. As well as incredibly beautiful scenery that remains mostly untouched thanks to its lack of visitors, there is plenty to do in the area, whether you’re looking to hike, swim, or spot some of Australia’s best-loved native creatures. Whatever you do, your time at Koolpin Gorge will be one to remember.
In the heart of World Heritage-listed Kakadu National Park, Gunlom Falls forms part of Waterfall Creek. Here, a cascading waterfall joins up with a serene and peaceful plunge pool to provide a stunning backdrop for relaxing, swimming, and picnicking.
From the top of the waterfall, you can enjoy spectacular views out across the south of Kakadu National Park while cooling off in the refreshing waters of the pools. At the top, you can check out the lookout walk, which takes you past pretty rock pools and exposes you to panoramas of the southern hills and ridges.
From there, you can continue on the flat walk to Murrill Billabong, where you can get stuck into some birdwatching and have a picnic in the grassed and shady picnic area provided.
The views from Gunlom Falls are perhaps the biggest draw to the attraction. At the top you can look out over the three distinct habitats of the south – stone country, woodland, and riverine areas
The Facilities at Gunlom Falls
Gunlom Falls caters well to visitors with facilities including barbecues, a car park, a designated picnic area set amongst shady woodland, and public toilets. It has everything you need for spending a day in the stunning surrounds.
Activities at Gunlom Falls
As well as marvelling at the impressive views from the top of the falls, you can go swimming in the crystal clear pools that accompany the cascading water. Elsewhere, there are plenty of walks that take you past numerous different sites – remember to keep your eyes peeled for the local wildlife as you go.
Camping is popular in the area, as the lush scenery makes for the perfect place to sleep under the stars. There are special camping spots for you to pitch your tent on that boast great facilities and views.
How to Get to Gunlom Falls
To get to the Kakadu National Park, leave Darwin and head out on the Arnhem Highway. Access to Gunlom Falls is available throughout the year, regardless of whether you’re visiting in the dry season or the wet season (where the dry season runs from May to October). The watering holes in Kakadu are monitored throughout the year and, if there hasn’t been enough rainfall, the swimming pools will be closed if it’s thought it is not safe for visitors.
If you’re in Kakadu National Park and looking for a beautiful place to relax, head to Gunlom Falls for stunning views and great swimming opportunities.
The Kakadu National Park is a alive with cultural significance, promising visitors the chance to dive back in time and learn all about the unique Aboriginal history that is imbued in the landscape.
Ubirr Rock is one of the most popular locations because of its extensive collection of centuries-old rock art. Here, you can visit one of the two major rock formations in Kakadu and discover traditional stories to gain an insight into the lives of the local Aboriginal people.
Boasting three prominent galleries, the site is easily reached via a 1-kilometre circular walking track that leads up a modest 250 metre track to an observation point that looks out across the surrounding floodplains. To experience the landscape at its best, visit during the sunset, which bathes the picturesque scenery into a milky glow before darkness falls.
In the Main Gallery, the most popular viewing spot, you’ll be exposed to numerous age-old artistic representations of the animals that the Aboriginal people hunted in a ritual that pays respect to the creatures for giving their lives for future success.
This gallery is also filled with what’s known as “X-ray art”, as well as images of white men and Mimi spirits that are so skinny that they are thought to be able to slip in and out of the cracks in the surrounding rock. There has been much debate about how the artists managed to even get to these parts of the rock to paint the Mimi spirits, but it’s thought that the spirits painted the pictures themselves, bringing the rock down to an accessible ground level to do just that.
At one end of this gallery, you’ll see a painting of a Tasmanian tiger which has been extinct from the region for more than 2,000 years and shows just how old some of the paintings on the rock are.
In the other galleries, you can marvel at important Dreamtime ancestors that have been immortalised on the walls, including the Namarrgarn Sisters and a magnificent Rainbow Serpent.
How to Get to Ubirr
Walking to Ubirr takes around an hour along a pretty 1-kilometre track that takes you directly from the carpark to the rock formation itself. Allow an extra 30 minutes to climb to the lookout – however, if you’re visiting in the summer months, access to this part of the area is restricted. It’s best to check in with the Bowali Visitor Centre for the latest information.
The Kakadu National Park boasts a plethora of magical landscapes, from ancient rainforests to sprawling wetlands and everything in between. In the heart of it all sits the Yellow Water Billabong, which promises visitors the chance to journey through some amazing wetland scenery packed full of incredible wildlife.
If you’re in the area, there are plenty of ways you can get to know the surrounding scenery and learn more about the fascinating animal life that calls this part of Australia home.
Things to do at Yellow Water Billabong
Try Your Hand at Fishing
Yellow Water Billabong is one of the best places to fish in the whole of Australia. Its waters provide an exceptional habitat for numerous species of fish, including the famed Kakadu barramundis. The great thing about fishing here is you can do it whatever your level – whether you’re a pro angler or someone who just wants to dip their toes in the water.
Take a Cruise
Exploring the waterways of the Yellow Water Billabong is a must-do, as the scenery in this part of the national park is spectacular and provides some of the most incredible wildlife encounters in the region.
To get to know it from a different perspective, hop on a cruise that operates throughout the year and discover the truly remarkable landscape. Take to the water at sunrise or sunset to see the water and its surroundings lit up in a magical glow, or head out in the daytime for some great wildlife spotting opportunities.
Get to Know the Resident Wildlife
The wildlife at the Yellow Water Billabong is second to none. Covering vast wetlands, it is home to numerous species of native creature that thrive in this environment.
The billabong itself forms part of the South Alligator River System, although there are no alligators in Australia – they’re all crocs here! So you can witness these prehistoric creatures in the water, as well as keep your eyes peeled for colourful bird species, different varieties of snake – both venomous and not – and a huge amount of fish species, including the famous Kakadu barramundi.
Explore Kakadu National Park is an incredible experience, and the landscape surrounding the Yellow Water Billabong is one of the best places to soak up everything the area has to offer. Whether you’re on the hunt for wildlife, want to see some of Australia’s most surreal landscapes, or simply want to try your hand at fishing, the billabong has you covered.
The Kakadu National Park is awash with colourful wildlife. Throughout its expansive landscape, you can spot native Australian creatures, wander amongst ancient plant species, and walk beneath the hefty wingspans of vibrant birds.
In the heart of it all sits the Mamukala Wetlands, a haven of bird life that can be found two hours from Darwin off the long stretch of the Arnhem Highway. Here, you can feast your eyes on thousands of migratory magpie geese as they gather together to feed from a bird hide, or simply stroll through the peaceful wetlands and marvel at the stunning surrounds.
If you’re planning on visiting Mamukala, you’ll find the scenery at its most dramatic towards the end of the dry season – September and October. This is when the magpie geese come to feed and cause a frenzy for keen photographers looking to capture the most candid shot. But whenever you choose to visit, you’ll find the wetlands looking their best.
From an observation platform, you can gaze out at the unique birdlife that characterises the area and soak up the acute seasonal changes that seem to be most dramatic in this part of Australia.
Exploring Mamukala Wetlands
To make the most of your visit, take the three kilometre walk that runs alongside the wetlands. As you go, keep your eyes peeled for egrets, darters, herons, and colourful forest kingfishers. It’s not all birds, though, as you wander past paperbark trees and Pandanus that line the edges of the wetlands.
There are other walks, too, that allow you to take in different parts of the wetlands, depending on what kind of adventure you’re looking for. They vary from between one and four kilometres. In the drier months, you might want to venture out onto the Gungarre Walk which is only accessible during this time.
After you’ve taken a stroll and soaked up the pretty display of water lilies that garnish the wetlands and spotted some of the area’s native creatures, you can kick back and relax by the car park where there are a selection of picnic tables and benches. From here, you can look out over the stunning expanse of the area and tuck into a tasty snack to refuel for more adventures.
For keen animal lovers, birdwatchers, and nature enthusiasts, the Kakadu National Park is a must-visit if you find yourself in this part of Australia. And, once there, make sure you venture to the Mamukala Wetlands to explore the diverse bird and animal life that calls it home.
Surrounded by the stunning expanse of the ancient Kakadu National Park, the small town of Jabiru offers the perfect place to start your explorations of the area. Built back in 1982 to house the small community living near the Ranger Uranium Mine, it is now a fully-functioning town with plenty of things to see and do – not least experience the beautiful scenery of the surrounding national park.
In the town itself, you’ll find a charming central plaza that’s flanked by souvenir shops, a supermarket, cute cafes, and family-run bakeries.
Things to Do Around Jabiru
The main reason visitors stop off in Jabiru is to explore the Kakadu National Park. It marks a great starting point for exploring the crisscross of hiking trails and to experience the views from a different perspective.
Bowali Visitor Centre
The Bowali Visitor Centre is perhaps the most popular attraction in town. Here, you can learn more about the Kakadu National Park through impressive videos, displays, and the library, and pick up a souvenir or two at the Marrawuddi Gallery, which stocks a selection of Aboriginal art, crafts, books, and gifts.
Bowali Bike and Walking Track
If you’re keen to explore the outdoors, head out onto the Bowali bike and walking track which begins by the Gagudju Crocodile Hotel in the centre of town. This 4km walk takes you through winding woodlands, passing ancient plant life and incredible natural scenery.
You can even discover Kakadu National Park from a different perspective by taking a scenic flight from Jabiru over the expanse of scenery below. Pick out major landmarks and spot colourful native wildlife as you soar through the sky.
Elsewhere in town, you can kick back and relax around the Jabiru town lake, with its picnic areas and barbecue facilities, or take part in some Barramundi fishing before taking a cruise across the Yellow Water.
For a step back in time, head out on a day-trip to Ubirr Rock and Twin Falls, where you can learn about local Aboriginal history and discover some of the region’s fascinating rock paintings.
Discovering the Kakadu National Park and everything it has to offer is top of many visitors’ wishlist. So, for the chance to dig deep into the incredible history of the area and explore stunning scenery, make a stop off in Jabiru to learn about small town life and to start your discovery into the beautiful surroundings.
The Bininj people are a group of Indigenous Australian people that live in the Western Arnhem land in the country’s Northern Territory. The land they occupy sprawls out between the Kakadu National Park in the west to the Stone Country in the east. In the middle of it all sits the Arnhem Plateau, a sandstone escarpment that’s imbued with centuries-old traditions and narratives.
The escarpment itself and many of the surrounding natural structures, like Injalak Hill, form one of the most important rock art sites in the world. Here, you can discover rock paintings that span thousands of years that decorate the walls of bark shelters and caves.
The name Bininj means “men” or “people” in the local dialect, and it is the name the people refer to themselves as. Today, the history of the Bininj is strong in this part of Australia, and there are a number of traditional ceremonies that take place throughout the year. The people divide themselves into eight so-called “skin” groups and two moieties, Duwa and Yirridjdja.
For the Bininj people, life continues very much how it has done for years. Hunting and harvesting bush foods is an important day-time activity which still revolves around an age-old calendar comprised of six distinct seasons. In the late wet season (known as bangkerreng), for example, the appearance of dragonflies over the water shows that the fish are fat and plentiful. If you explore some of the rock paintings in the region, you’ll see plenty of game representations.
The Mythology of the Bininj
Like most of the Indigenous tribes in Australia, the Bininj have many fascinating histories that have spanned generations. As with many of the other people in the Western Arnhem Land, the Bininj believe in the primordial creative function of a Rainbow Serpent. This creature is known as Ngalyod, and features a more feminine appearance than masculine.
It is thought to have come across to Australia via the sea to the northeast of the Cobourg Peninsula and, once settled in Coopers Creek on the East Alligator River, transformed her many children into men. From there, she began to create waterholes to serve the people’s thirst, and began supplying men with spears and women with digging sticks. She endowed both with intelligence and the use of all their senses. This theory is still imbued in the Bininj people, and their traditions, ceremonies, and lifestyle revolve around this way of thinking.
Maguk, located in the Kakadu National Park, was formally known as Barramundi Gorge. Today, it can be found in the Mary River area to the south of the national park. It’s situated around an hour’s drive from Cooinda and is made up of an ancient gorge in the Stone Country. To get there, it is a 14 km four-wheel drive trip followed by a further 1km walk. Once there, you’ll be greeted by a beautiful natural plunge pool that languishes at the bottom of the steep gorge walls.
Walking to Barramundi Gorge
The 1km walk to Maguk exposes you to some of the most breath-taking scenery in the region. To begin with, the forest starts to open gradually out into a sandy, rocky landscape. The track weaves its way back and forth across the creek you emerge into, then it’s time for some stepping-stones to get across the small layer of water.
In certain areas, the creek opens out into a small, natural pool, perfect for taking a refreshing dip in when the weather is warm. The further along the creek you go, the more difficult the walk starts to get – you might have to clamber over a rock or two. But, the further you climb, the more beautiful the scenery that greets you.
The beauty of Maguk is that it’s one of the only falls in Kakadu National Park that doesn’t dry immediately when the rain stops. Sure, it starts to slow down towards the end of the dry season, but it continues to flow regardless of the weather.
For a unique natural experience, you can swim your way across the refreshing pool and stand under the waterfall. There was, at one point, a tunnel that marked a walk to the top of the falls, but this has since been closed for re-vegetation.
The Maguk Bush Camping Area
Close to the falls, you’ll find the Maguk bush camping area. Here, once you’ve indulged in the beauty of Maguk and its surrounding scenery, you can relax with the barbecue facilities, enjoy the picturesque picnic area, and kick back and soak up the stunning surrounds.
Maguk lies deep in the heart of Kakadu National Park, promises its visitors a unique natural experience that brings together ancient gorges, pretty vegetation, and a selection of relaxing facilities for you to enjoy as you spend some time in this magical part of Australia.