Darwin Favorites

  • Public Toilet Near the Aquatic Center
    Public Toilet Near the Aquatic Center
    by AlbuqRay
  • Nightcliff Foreshore Public Toilet
    Nightcliff Foreshore Public Toilet
    by AlbuqRay
  • My first virtual beer ;-)
    My first virtual beer ;-)
    by Tripack

Most Recent Favorites in Darwin

  • aussirose's Profile Photo

    Global Gossip

    by aussirose Written Nov 22, 2009

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Favorite thing: I experienced the excellant travel booking and internet service of Global Gossip when in Cairns, so I was happy to see that it is also in Darwin.

    If you want to make a travel booking or use the internet (and they provide a card you can top up and use anywhere in Australia)....then look no further than Global Gossip.

    Global Gossip Darwin
    Related to:
    • Backpacking
    • Road Trip
    • Budget Travel

    Was this review helpful?

  • Mikebb's Profile Photo

    AAT Kings 8 Day Coach Tour

    by Mikebb Updated Aug 27, 2009

    4.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Favorite thing: We enjoyed an excellent tour through parts of the Northern Territory with specialist tour company AAT Kings which is a part of the group which includes Trafalgar Tours.

    No complaints about the tour, excellent Tour Guide who became part of the tour and often arrange to accompany passangers during free time. Our tour included several days in Darwin, a day trip to Litchfield National Park, a trip to Katherine via Adelaide river with a 2 night stay in Katherine. We then continued onto Kakadu National Park for 2 nights.

    The tour included many entries, 3 boat cruises including Katherine Gorge, Kakadu wetlands, and the Yellow Waters.

    Web Address: www.aatkings.com Toll Free: 1300 556 100 (Australia)

    AAT KINGS
    Related to:
    • Historical Travel
    • Seniors
    • Road Trip

    Was this review helpful?

  • ValbyDK's Profile Photo

    Darwin Stubby

    by ValbyDK Updated Oct 15, 2008

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Favorite thing: You must try a Darwin Stubby... Two litres of beer...

    It's mostly a tourist gimmick - and a quite expensive beer. The beer is not served at the local pubs, but you can buy it at groceries stores or souvenir shops in Darwin.

    I was told that the Darwin Stubby is the biggest beer bottle in the world.

    Darwin Stubby
    Related to:
    • Beer Tasting

    Was this review helpful?

  • Hotels in Darwin Australia

    by sarahreynold Written Jul 5, 2008

    Favorite thing: Comfort Inn Asti Darwin is reasonable. I would not suggest Holiday Inn for the price. Palms City Resort would be my first suggestion followed by the Travelodge Mirambeena Resort Darwin is good for the price and has lovely gardens. If you are looking for quality places those would be my 2 suggestions.

    Darwin Crowne Plaza Hotel
    Related to:
    • Business Travel
    • Luxury Travel
    • Road Trip

    Was this review helpful?

  • Tripack's Profile Photo

    Cheers Mate!

    by Tripack Written Jun 16, 2008

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Favorite thing:
    Do not forget to drink with MODERATION... even if the aussie beers are very tempted.

    Each Australian state have its own proud:
    Tooheys (NSW), my favorite by the way
    XXXX (QLD), my favorite too by the way
    Cascade (TAS), my favorite too too by the way
    VB (VIC), my favorite too too too by the way
    Coopers (SA), my favorite too too too too by the way
    Emu (WA), my favorite too too too too too by the way
    ??? (NT), ouf I'm saved I did not taste the local beer as I never go there (yet)... should come back soon ;-)

    Fondest memory:
    My first virtual local beer ;-)

    My first virtual beer ;-) My last virtual beer ;-)
    Related to:
    • Beer Tasting

    Was this review helpful?

  • tiabunna's Profile Photo

    Birth Pains: Establishing Darwin

    by tiabunna Updated Jun 9, 2008

    4.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Favorite thing: Let’s start at the start. The Aborigines have lived in Australia for at least 40,000 years. Whoever was next to visit is somewhat doubtful, there are suggestions that a Chinese exploration fleet may have reached Australia’s shores in the 1400s. I rather believe that the Portuguese, great sailors and explorers, would have looked around in the 1500s - especially as their colony in Timor was a relative swim across the ocean and the Macassan fishermen were visiting from about that time: but the Portuguese were secretive and left few records. There is no doubt the Dutch visited in 1606 and their later explorers named Arnhem Land in 1623. Even the French, on lengthy scientific and exploratory voyages, travelled around the coasts in the early 1800s.

    The British, focussed on asserting their colonial claims to the entire continent, were keen to pre-empt any other national aspirations, so establishing a colony at Australia’s “Top End” became a priority. In doing so, they ran into far more difficulties than they had to the south. Here’s the list of failed attempts at a colony:
    ● Fort Dundas, established on Melville Island in 1824 and abandoned in 1828
    ● Fort Wellington, at Raffles Bay, lasted only from 1827 to 1829
    ● Fort Victoria on the Cobourg Peninsula came closest to success, but still lasted only from 1838 to 1849.
    ● A settlement was established at Escape Cliffs, 75km from the present Darwin, in 1864 – it lasted only until 1867.

    All the previous attempts to establish a colony had been military. In 1869 the new colony of Palmerston (later renamed Darwin) was established. South Australia had assumed responsibility for the north from New South Wales in 1863 and needed an administrative centre. The Palmerston colony (nothing to do with the new Darwin suburb of Palmerston) took on more significance in 1872 when the Overland Telegraph was built and an undersea cable connected Australia via Darwin to the rest of the world.

    Fondest memory: Nothing remains of the first settlements and the ruins of Fort Victoria are quite inaccessible. Fortunately, on our trip through Arnhem Land we were able to see the marker cairn at Smith Point on the Cobourg Peninsula, erected in the 1840s to warn shipping headed for Fort Victoria of the location of a dangerous reef.

    Old eroded stones, Smith Point Cairn. Information sign on the Overland Telegraph
    Related to:
    • Historical Travel

    Was this review helpful?

  • tiabunna's Profile Photo

    Blown Away again: Cyclone Tracey

    by tiabunna Updated Jun 9, 2008

    4.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Favorite thing: I’ve mentioned that Darwin is very tropical. That unfortunately means it is in the climatic region frequented in the “Wet” by tropical cyclones (also, in some regions, known as hurricanes or typhoons). Cyclones pass through the region yearly, usually offshore and with little effect.

    Cyclone Tracey was not a lady though – at Category 4 she provided Darwin’s second defining event. She arrived on Christmas Eve, 24 December 1974, with the 8km diameter eye passing right across the city. Winds were estimated to have reached 280 km/hr, but the Weather Bureau’s anemometer was destroyed before the peak. At the time, Darwin had a population of about 48,000 people living in 12000 houses – it is estimated that only 400 houses escaped undamaged, with most totally destroyed. Evacuations reduced the post-Tracey population to about 6,000 but most of the city was rebuilt by 1978 and population growth resumed, with self-government for the Northern Territory also achieved in 1978.

    The first of my photos, taken of a photo in an insurance company window, shows the typical damage to a typical Darwin house such as in my previous tip. The second photo, from an explanatory public sign, shows the effect spread over an entire suburb, with debris everywhere and all trees stripped back to bare trunks. Tracey levelled the city more effectively than had the Japanese! Luckily, casualties were fairly low as many people were away for holidays at the time and the cyclone traversed the city at night, when few were in the streets. The third photo is of an information sign, illustrating the changes in Darwin’s population since the 1930s – sorry about the shadows!

    Cyclone-damaged Darwin house What a tropical cyclone can do! Graph showing the rise in Darwin's population
    Related to:
    • Architecture
    • Historical Travel

    Was this review helpful?

  • tiabunna's Profile Photo

    Shopping in suburban Darwin

    by tiabunna Updated Jun 3, 2008

    4.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Favorite thing: Tourists don’t travel to the “Top End” to see suburban Darwin, so I suspect fairly few visit these areas. On the other hand, there is little reason for most Darwin residents to visit the city area, unless their employment is there. The result seems to be a distinct separation into “two Darwins”, one inhabited by transient backpackers and tourists, the other by the “locals”.

    Because we were off to the “VT Survivor” trip, we had some heavy-duty shopping to arrange before we left: things such as buying camping chairs, not to mention a seeming mountain of groceries (most of which we used). So we took our vehicles to one of the main shopping malls, at Casuarina in the “Northern Suburbs” (at 2 near top of the map with preceding tip).

    As we drove through the suburbs, and also at the shopping mall area, I gained the distinct impression that the “suburban Darwin” is distinctly more akin to the rest of Australia than the impressions given by the city area. Inside the shopping mall, apart from less emphasis on winter clothing, we could have been in any other Australian city – much the same ‘feel’, much the same shops from the usual chains. We all lunched there – the standard “shopping mall” catering applied.

    But ….Have you ever felt intimidated by women in shopping malls pushing shopping trollies? If you have, don’t get in the way of a team of VT ladies on a “Survivor” grocery-buying trip! LOL

    Main photo: Approaching the Casuarina shopping mall
    Second photo:Casuarina shops
    Third photo:Heading into the shops
    Fourth photo:”The list says we still need…”
    Fifth photo:Beware teams of VTers with shopping trollies!

    Casuarina shopping mall Approaching the shops Shops, here we come! ���The list says we still need��� Keep out of the way!
    Related to:
    • Food and Dining

    Was this review helpful?

  • tiabunna's Profile Photo

    Current Darwin

    by tiabunna Updated Jun 3, 2008

    4.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Favorite thing: I’ve mentioned in my 'Introduction' page that Darwin sprawls. That results partly from the city’s layout. The old part of the city is on the peninsula near the wharves, and several suburbs are nearby. But substantial amounts of land are occupied by defence facilities and the airport is to the north – so the suburbs continue beyond the airport and a new suburban area, called Palmerston, is situated away to the east.

    After the havoc caused by Cyclone Tracey, most suburban housing is relatively new, though some older style houses have been rebuilt with appropriate reinforcement should another large cyclone come along. The suburbs seem to be expanding with the population, but what really struck me was the booming construction of inner-city apartments. These would have been unimaginable only a few years ago, but I presume they are a reflection of affluence resulting from the resources boom in the Territory, coupled with changing lifestyles which place more emphasis on social interaction than on the traditional “house and garden”. Alongside the city, a new prestige area has sprung up around the marina at Cullen Bay (14 on the map). Meanwhile, both the government and private developers are spending heaps to develop the area between the city and the old wharves for ‘harbourside living’.

    Main photo: Darwin map
    Second photo:New apartments springing up
    Third photo:Old and new Darwin
    Fourth photo:Upmarket mansions, Cullen Bay marina
    Fifth photo:New Cullen Bay apartments loom over the marina.

    Darwin map - see text New apartments springing up 'Old' and 'new' Darwin Upmarket mansions, Cullen Bay marina New Cullen Bay apartments loom over the marina
    Related to:
    • Architecture

    Was this review helpful?

  • tiabunna's Profile Photo

    Blown Away - Darwin in WW2

    by tiabunna Updated Jun 2, 2008

    4.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Favorite thing: By the 1930s, Darwin had grown to a population of several thousand. Gold and other minerals had been discovered inland when the northern railway was built, there was a meatworks and a pearling fleet, and the first aviators had established it as an important aerodrome. With the global political situation becoming more shaky, the Government began to develop a military base there.

    Australia will never forget the 19th of February, 1942, because that was when two Japanese air raids virtually levelled the township - the first ever foreign attack on Australia. In the first, 188 aircraft (more than at Pearl Harbour, and from the same carrier group) arrived in the morning. 21 ships were sunk or badly damaged in the harbour, most of the wharves were destroyed and much of the town was levelled. Most casualties were sailors on shipping, but a direct hit killed all 9 staff of the Post Office and the explosion of a munitions ship killed 22 wharf labourers. The little aerial defence consisted of eleven American P40 Kittyhawks, by chance at the airport while in transit elsewhere. Five were able to become airborne for the first attack, but none remained for the second attack of 54 bombers several hours later. Fortunately, with the Japanese advance southwards, the Government had earlier initiated a civilian withdrawal (the last left by air the day before the air raids), leaving only about 2000 civilians in town.

    There were the first of a total of 65 air raids on Darwin, the last occurring late in 1943. By then, Darwin was no longer the ‘front line’, but it remained a major military base and staging post – and the war remains one of the defining events of the town’s history. Information plaques such as in the photos are located at several places in the city.

    One of several plaques displayed around Darwin Section of plaque on the bombing of Darwin
    Related to:
    • Historical Travel

    Was this review helpful?

  • tiabunna's Profile Photo

    Darwin Houses – older style

    by tiabunna Written Jun 1, 2008

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Favorite thing: Post war Darwin took a while to become re-established, but in the 1950s and 1960s the town grew strongly. A particular style of tropical housing was developed, in many ways typical of that found throughout northern Australia. As you will see from the photos, the design raises the house, which is lightly built of fibre board, high on concrete ‘stumps’. This allows good airflow to assist cooling, while also providing space beneath to store vehicles and other property. Roofs were made of corrugated iron sheets. The design also provided many windows, mostly with glass louvres, again to assist with ventilation.

    Old style Darwin houses Older style Darwin House
    Related to:
    • Architecture

    Was this review helpful?

  • skatzcatz's Profile Photo

    Cullen Bay

    by skatzcatz Updated Aug 4, 2006

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Favorite thing: Cullen Bay is a suburb of Darwin with a Marina, nice walking beach and various restaurants and cafes. Either a 20 minute walk from the centre of town or catch the no. 4 bus.

    Fondest memory: Facilities include: scuba diving, restaurants, dragon boat racing, cafes, Mandorah Ferry etc

    Cullen Bay Cullen Bay Cullen Bay Cullen Bay darkening skys over Cullen Bay
    Related to:
    • Diving and Snorkeling
    • Water Sports
    • Food and Dining

    Was this review helpful?

  • skatzcatz's Profile Photo

    Pioneer Cemetery (Palmerston) for geneology buffs

    by skatzcatz Updated Jan 2, 2006

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Favorite thing: The Pioneer/Goyder Road Cemetery was originally called "Palmerston Cemetery" and is Darwin's first "official" cemetery. Among the gravestones and unmarked graves, lie buried the stories of hundreds of the Territory's pioneer men, women and children. There are stories of tragedy and triumph, hope and heartbreak. Here, in this final resting place, the 'occupants' sleep on oblivious to the modern homes and businesses established nearby and the thousands of vehicles that pass by.

    The Pioneer Cemetery is situated on Goyder Road and is also known as the Goyder Road Cemetery or Palmerston Cemetery. The Pioneer Cemetery was opened in 1865 and closed in 1919. The cemetery has been controlled by the Darwin City Council since 1958.

    In February 1869 the South Australian Government sent George Woodroffe Goyder, the Surveyor General and a group of survey teams north to Port Darwin aboard the Moonta. One of the first tasks of George Goyder surveyors when they designed the new town of Palmerston (not officially called Darwin until after 1911) was to lay out the future town across the peninsula and extending a mile or two from the site. In the plan, Goyder also made a provision for the first cemetery for Palmerston. The 48 acres they selected for this purpose stretched across from where Graham Street in Stuart Park runs today, straddling what became the Stuart Highway and running from around Nylander Street to include what remains of the cemetery today, near the Motor Vehicles Registry.

    The site for the cemetery was recorded in the 1869 field book of Surveyor AT Woods, referring to "Prince's Creek' which was in the vicinity of Graham or Nudl streets of today's Stuart Park. Indeed, the present Stuart Highway bisects the site of the old cemetery which provided for a road reserve two chains wide leading from town as "Freds Pass Road".

    Fondest memory: It is thought that the first burials were in 1873. Charles Harvey, a carpenter, died on 4 October 1872, James Honan on 26 October and police trooper William Davies was taken by a crocodile off Lameroo whilst swimming on 26 November 1872. Two miners, Robert McCracken and JW Smith died in early 1873.

    In the first half of century of Darwin's existence, more than 600 people were buried in the Palmerston Cemetery. Today, about 90 graves are still visible, within the new fenced area of what remains of the old cemetery.

    maintained by Darwin City Council
    www.darwin.nt.gov.au

    Pioneer Cemetery Pioneer Cemetery Pioneer Cemetery Pioneer Cemetery Pioneer Cemetery
    Related to:
    • Historical Travel

    Was this review helpful?

  • xuessium's Profile Photo

    Best time to visit Darwin

    by xuessium Written Nov 26, 2005

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Favorite thing: The best months, weather-wise, would be during the winter months when the weather is actually dry up north in Australia. You get plenty of sun, blue skies and almost no rain.

    As such the best months should be between late May - early October.

    After that, the Big Wet slowly descends onto this part of Australia, and at its peak in December-January, you may get torrential rain and as well as tropical cyclones.

    The worst cyclone to hit Darwin was in 1974 - Cyclone Tracy - on Christmas Eve and almost flattened the entire city.

    Fondest memory: Know more about Cyclone Tracy by clicking the words to get to the link.

    Related to:
    • Backpacking
    • Budget Travel
    • Business Travel

    Was this review helpful?

  • Travel2write's Profile Photo

    Tipping

    by Travel2write Written Aug 2, 2005

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Favorite thing: Tipping is not standard practice in Australia. You may wish to add an extra 10% to the bill at a restaurant if you are impressed with the service but it is not mandatory. Most Australians, however, when going to a good restaurant will expect to pay an additional 10%.

    Restaurant prices carry no extra taxes or service charges and the food in Australia is plentiful, of high quality and cheap.

    Taxi drivers appreciate a tip but they will not be insulted if you fail to tip.

    Related to:
    • Budget Travel
    • Business Travel
    • School Holidays

    Was this review helpful?

Instant Answers: Darwin

Get an instant answer from local experts and frequent travelers

27 travelers online now

Comments

Darwin Favorites

Reviews and photos of Darwin favorites posted by real travelers and locals. The best tips for Darwin sightseeing.

View all Darwin hotels