We visited Howard Springs after the big vt weekend and thoroughly enjoyed ourselves. If you want to see huge Barramundi then this is the place to see them....check out photo inside. We also saw turtles swimming close & even saw a snake.
Check the link below on how to get there.
There are few sights on earth more pleasing to the eye than a spectacular sunset and Darwin is certainly a photographers paradise for capturing one.
The "Spirit of Darwin" offers a two hour sunset cruise around Darwin Harbour at the end of each day with either a full dinner or just a few nibblies included.
I opted to go for the nibblies cruise because I couldn't wait to try out one of the many tempting restaurants that I spotted at Cullen Bay Marina while waiting to start the sunset cruise.
The greatest natural disaster in Australia's history was on 24 December 1974 when Cyclone Tracy destroyed the city of Darwin. Overnight, 48,000 people were made homeless by the ferocity of Tracy.
The Cyclone Tracy Gallery features documentary footage,photographs and for me, the most disturbing was being in a small darkened room with a thunderous recording of Cyclone Tracy racing through Darwin.
I imagined that all I would hear is a strong wind whistling through Darwin with a bit of crashing and banging. But in reality there is also the frightening sound of tin sheets scraping along the ground at over 200 km/h before crashing into houses, power poles and trees.
The largest falls in Litchfield are Wangi Falls. Here you can swim and snorkel in a large pool set in a rainforest.
In the wet season, the flow of water is awesome. The falls aren't accessible all year round, and swimming is sometimes prohibited after heavy rain due to powerful currents in the pool.
A nature trail leads from the camping and BBQ area to the top of the falls and back down to the car park.
At Florence Falls two spectacular waterfalls cascade into a deep swimming hole. Be careful of submerged sharp rocks.
You can also climb to a high lookout for a magnificent view down to the falls and the surrounding bush area.
If you want to linger a little longer here, there is a nearby campground with shower and toilet facilities.
Well we knew it 'was no ordinary show' when Gary and his vehicle arrived to take us on the tour. We were right. We saw and learnt so much in just 4 hours. How good is that?
Did you know 115 tonnes of bombs were dropped on Darwin in 64 air raids? More than were dropped on Pearl Harbour!
Unfortunately for the US navy the 'Peary' happened to be in the harbour at the time of the first attack and was destroyed.
The 'Manunda' Hospital ship was damaged in the attacks even though we were told the Japanese airforce ace leading the attack had not meant for that to happen.
We were taken to many sites of historical significance...Gary knows them all and more...he is to write a book...we need to read it.
If you go to Cullen Bay Marina you will find a ferry to take you to Mandorah. We thought it would be a chance to see the harbour and it was. The little tourist info shop had a list of ferry departure times so off we went early in the morning..
It is much much further to drive around but of course when you go by ferry without a car you only have a chance to visit the pub. Lunch and an evening meal are available and I would think it is quite a popular outing at night.We did not stay for lunch as it was a long quiet wait at that time of day.
One thing you might find unusual is the absence of potato chips...in fact the pub is advertised as The NO Hot Chips Hotel...'The world does not need more hot chips' ...I would love to know the story behind that!
We watched a man with chalk write on the blackboard...what an artist...he had an arts degree I discovered but no money to be made in sculpture!
Another feature was the toilets...no mistake here. Girls were pink ...boys were blue with very clear signs.
On our return to Cullen Bay Marina we had a really nice lunch at the Greek cafe. See my review.
The "Spirit of Darwin" has morning, lunchtime and sunset cruises around Darwin Harbour and departs from Cullen Bay Marina each day.
On leaving Cullen Bay you will pass through a loch which is designed to keep out the mud that results from Darwin's 8m tides.
From there you will cruise around Emery Point and out to the harbour. They will take you past Larrakeyah Army Base, Fort Hill Wharf and Stokes Hill Wharf before going back again.
Please check out their website for departure times and costs.
The Maritime Gallery at the Museum & Art Gallery of the Northern Territory is a collection of the different types of boats found in South East Asia.
Included are original pearling luggers, refugee boats and illegal fishing vessels. There are also smaller craft such as canoes and catamarans.
The exhibit is split level so you can view the boats from above as well as down below. It's housed indoors and airconditioned with a lovely view toward the blue green waters of Fannie Bay.
Kakadu is nature at your door according to the travel brochures. It was a long drive to find the door I might tell you...300k each way so you could even say you had been there and seen the door from the outside!
Well one day does not really even begin to show you this marvellous place...just makes you wish you were staying over with your 4Wd, camping gear and Zig ( V.Ter 1+1) who is a park ranger and knows it all.
On our way we travelled on the Arnhem Highway passed through Humpty Doo (great name) and had a break at The Bark Hut. You will see a photo of our coach overtaking a road train. If you drive yourself know what you are in for on the roads....see my tip. This monster had 86 wheels!
We visited the Waradjon Cultural Centre, cruised on Yellow Water to view the wild life, had a mediocre lunch IMO and as a climax climbed around the Nourlangie Aboriginal site. The latter is a bit of a climb so mind yourself
Another 'must see'. This was an amazing place. Hubby & I could have spent all day here easily! Our va's enjoyed themselves too :o) It's like a surfari with a train that takes you around and you get on and off as you please and it is very well presented.
We did the monsoon walk, the wooded walk and visited the acquarium.
I'm not a real 'museum' person but I really enjoyed this place. It is a great place to go to familiarise yourself with the aboriginal culture, learn all about crocs & it also has a great section dedicated to the big Cyclone Tracey that devistated Darwin in 1974 complete with sounds. I recommend you visit this place.
I’d rate strolling through Bicentennial Park as not just enjoyable and relaxing, but also as surprisingly educational if you take the time to look at the various monuments. So stay with me while I cover some of the more significant parts in the next few tips – should you be using this as a guide for a visit of your own, the trip starts from the northern end and works toward the main city area. Once there you can reward yourself with a cool drink!
John McDouall Stuart was the first to find a useable route through the inland deserts from Adelaide to the “Top End”, crossing the continent and returning by the same route in 1861-62. His route became the path for the Overland Telegraph, opened in 1872 and for the original railway seeking to link the north and south of Australia. While the main road and “New Ghan” railway essentially follow Stuart’s route south to Alice Springs, further south they diverge to the westward of his path and away from the Lake Eyre basin in South Australia.
Stuart’s trailblazing path proved tremendously important to South Australia and, in fact, to Australia generally. This monument to Stuart was presented to Darwin in 2005, to commemorate the 190th anniversary of Stuart’s birth, as a commissioned artwork.
Tucked away down a side street not far from the city centre, the Chinese Temple is one of the few remainders of Darwin’s former Chinatown, but this area of the city is being overtaken by new office blocks and apartments. Darwin still retains quite a large Chinese population. According to an information sign at the Temple, most originally came from the Guangdong Province or HongKong – but more recently the migration has been from around the Pacific. It is worth noting that much of the work on the original railway south from Darwin in the 1800s was carried out by Chinese workers.
The Chinese Temple has had a tough time, being damaged by cyclones twice before being demolished by Tracey, plus suffering damage from Japanese bombing and also suffering looting by Australian soldiers during the War. Although it was deserted apart from parked cars at the time of my visit, it is impeccably kept by the Chung Wah Society and is open daily from 0800 to 1600. There also is an associated NT Chinese Museum, closed from November to March and on Tuesdays, but open on all other days from 1000 to 1400: unfortunately I was there on a Tuesday!
Often referred to simply as MAGNT (the acronym), Darwin’s Museum and Gallery is well worth a visit – and if you time that visit for the late afternoon it’s just a stroll across the carpark to the Darwin Ski Club (separate tip) for dinner.
As you arrive, it must be said that the building looks to be more utilitarian than attractive. Inside though, past the reception desk and the surprisingly good bookshop, the galleries flow together extremely well and it’s easy to forgive the ‘form follows function’ architecture!
MAGNT isn’t large, but what’s on display is very well presented. Upstairs you’ll find the art section – focussed entirely on work by Australian artists, but spanning from John Glover in Van Diemen’s Land of the early 1800s, through the Impressionists such as Rupert Bunny and on to more modern works. It’s almost a “who’s who?” of Australian art.
Downstairs there’s a good display covering Australia through the geological ages; extinct wildlife from the dinosaurs to the megafauna which lasted until about 40,000 years ago with the coming of Aboriginals; and the current wildlife of the Territory. Head on a little further for an excellent display on Cyclone Tracey, including a “virtual experience” in which you stand in a darkened room (simulating a Darwin house on the night of the cyclone) while listening to a soundtrack recording of the cyclone itself. The clear sounds of large objects being thrown around at 250km/hr would have been far more worrying than the sound of the wind itself!
Visits to the MAGNT are free, but unfortunately there is a “no photographs” rule, so you will have to be content with my exterior photos.
Open weekdays 0900-1700
Weekends and public holidays 1000-1700
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