Northern Territory Off The Beaten Path

  • Emery Point lighthouse sticking up above the trees
    Emery Point lighthouse sticking up above...
    by grandmaR
  • Emery Point lighthouse with Darwin in the back
    Emery Point lighthouse with Darwin in...
    by grandmaR
  • Darwin and Emery Point lighthouse
    Darwin and Emery Point lighthouse
    by grandmaR

Northern Territory Off The Beaten Path

  • Trip North - Southern Part of Kakadu...

    After leaving Pine Creek around 16:00 on 26 Aug 2010, Zig (1+1) and I took the Kakadu Highway (Hwy-21) to the southern part of Kakadu National Park where Zig is a ranger. It is ~60 km trip from Pine Creek to the Goymarr Interpretive Center (as it is called on the Kakadu Visitor Guide map), where you can get a park pass. The Interpretive Center is...

  • Trip North - Pine Creek

    Pine Creek is the closest town to Zig's (1+1) work house in Kakadu National Park, so he knows it well. We got there about 15:10 on 26 Aug 2010. We first went to Alex Gory Park where the historical railway precinct is located; however, the museum in the old railway station and the shed with the restored 1877 Beyer Peacock steam locomotive were...

  • Trip North - Prescribed Bushfire Near...

    Bushfires are a part of the Northern Territory landscape. There is a tradition of using "controlled" burns, i.e., prescribed bushfires. Some of them can get really close to the Stuart Highway. Zig (1+1) and I passed one a few kilometers south of the Edith River on 26 Aug 2010. Not only do the flames get really close to the highway, but the smoke...

  • Trip North - Silver Cycads Near...

    A few kilometers out of Katherine near where the Stuart Highway passes over The Ghan rail line, there is a limestone formation on which ancient Silver Cycads grow. One of Zig's (1+1) specialties is cycads, so we stopped to see them on 26 Aug 2010.

  • Trip North - Katherine

    Zig (1+1) and I arrived in Katherine at about 12:35 on 26 Aug 2010. Even though when I was going south from Darwin to Alice Springs on the Greyhound Croc Stopover tour (5 Aug 2010), I had had a bad experience with Nitmiluk Tours and had missed seeing the Katherine Gorge, we did not have time to go out to the Gorge. We did stop at the Visitor...

  • Cutta Cutta Caves Information

    Cutta Cutta Caves Nature Park covers 1499 hectares (3704 acres) of limestone (Karst) formations and complex cave networks. The Jawoyn people have a long association with the area and evidence of past Aboriginal activity is found throughout the Park; however, the web page says that there is no evidence of Aboriginal use of the caves. Around 1900, a...

  • Trip North - Cutta Cutta Caves

    Cutta Cutta Caves Nature Park is located ~23 km north of the Central Arnhem Road and ~28 km south of Katherine, about 1 km west of the Stuart Highway. Zig (1+1) and I arrived around noon on 26 Aug 2010. Although the cave tours are supposed to run hourly from 9 AM to 3 PM, there is also a lunch hour for the guide at noon. The Visitors' Center is...

  • Trip North - Abandoned Maranboy Tin Mine

    Zig (1+1) and I left the Barramundi Feeding Show at the Territory Manor in Mataranka at about 10:00 on 26 Aug 2010. It is ~55 km up the Stuart Highway to the Central Arnhem Road intersection; Maranboy is ~20 km east on the Central Arnhem Road. Tin was first discovered there in 1913 and the tin field at Maranboy was the principal producer of tin in...

  • Trip North - Barramundi Feeding Show

    The Territory Manor Motel & Caravan Park on the north side of the town of Mataranka is famous for its Barramundi Feeding Show (daily at 9:30 AM and 1:00 PM). Zig (1+1) and I stopped for the show on our way back to Darwin after spending the night at the Mataranka Homestead Tourist Resort. Although we did not stay at the Territory Manor, we did...

  • Trip North - Mataranka Homestead Tourist...

    I had spent two nights and two full days at the Mataranka Homestead Tourist Resort (MHTR) on my way south to Alice Springs. It is a nice stop just 7 km off the Stuart Highway near the town of Mataranka, so all of my tips are under that VT destination. After Zig (1+1) and I toured Bitter Springs we spent the night at MHTR. Our motel room faced the...

  • Trip North - Korran (Bitter Springs)

    After visiting the Elsey Cemetery and the original Elsey Station Homestead site, Zig (1+1) and I headed to Korran (Bitter Springs). Counting the ~7.5 km from the Homestead site back to the Stuart Highway, it was ~23 km to Bitter Springs. On the way we went past the turn to the Mataranka Homestead Tourist Resort; however, we did plan to go back and...

  • Trip North - Elsey Cemetery & Homestead...

    The next stop after Larrimah that Zig (1+1) and I made on 25 Aug 2010 was the historic Elsey Cemetery. We arrived around 15:15. The turn to the cemetery is located ~62 km north of Larrimah and then ~7 km to the southeast on a paved road. The original Elsey Station Homestead site is ~0.5 km past the cemetery on the same road. Because there is a...

  • Fran's Devonshire Tea House in Larrimah

    Fran's Devonshire Tea House is located in the old Larrimah Police Station and Museum. Fran serves delicious fare, including homemade camel and buffalo pies, roast lamb with damper, sausages, real corn beef, pasties, sausage rolls, waffles, scones, freshly baked bread, apple pies and rolls, Espresso and rain water filter coffee, and Devonshire teas....

  • Trip North - Larrimah Overall

    Larrimah is on the Stuart Highway ~89 km north of the turn to Daly Waters. Zig (1+1) and I got there about 14:30 on 25 Aug 2010. We did not actually stop. We just drove through and I took some pictures. The Larrimah Wayside Inn (formerly the Birdum Creek Hotel then the Larrimah Hotel) has a roadhouse, hotel/motel rooms, a caravan park, and the Pink...

  • Larrimah Museum and Park

    The Larrimah Museum is housed in the former telegraph repeater station, which is located across the street from the Larrimah Wayside Inn. Admission is free but donations are requested. The park and Museum have displays on the railroad that once terminated at Birdum Creek (~8 km south of Larrimah). There are also displays about the area during World...

  • Larrimah Wayside Inn

    Although Birdum Creek (not the present day town of Birdum) had been the end of the line for the North Australian Railway ("the line to nowhere"), the area was subject to flooding during the wet season. After World War II when all the military personnel left, Birdum Creek was abandoned; however, in 1952 the hotel was dismantled and moved to its...

  • Trip North - Daly Waters

    Daly Waters is a small town located ~4 km off the Stuart Highway, 373 km north of Threeways and 273 km south of Katherine. Zig (1+1) and I made a quick stop at Daly Waters on the second day of our trip back to Darwin from Alice Springs on 25 Aug 2010. We actually made three stops: the Pub, Stuart's Tree, and the Aerodrome. There are also a few...

  • Trip North - Hi-Way Inn

    The Hi-Way Inn is located ~4 km south of the turn to Daly Waters where the Carpentaria Highway from the East meets the Stuart Highway. Zig (1+1) and I did not stop but I did take a couple of pictures as we drove by. From its Facebook page it looks like the Hi-Way Inn can be "interesting" at times.

  • Trip North - Dunmarra

    I had been to Dunmarra before. The Greyhound bus stopped at Dunmarra at ~21:30 on 7 Aug 2010. I had caught the bus again and headed on south to Alice Springs after I had stayed at the Mataranka Homestead Tourist Resort for a couple of days. Going north with Zig (1+1) on 25 Aug 2010, we did not stop but I took a couple of pictures as we passed by.

  • Trip North - Sir Charles Todd Memorial

    Connecting the Continent has an excellent web page on the Sir Charles Todd Memorial. The Memorial is located ~74 km north of Elliott (~27 km south of Dunmarra) on the Stuart Highway, 1 km east of Frew Pond where the northern and southern portions of the Overland Telegraph Line met. Charles Todd did not erect any poles nor did he survey the route....

  • Trip North - Termite Mounds & Flowering...

    In the same field as the flowering hibiscus plants (~10 minutes south of the Sir Charles Todd Memorial on the west side of the Stuart Highway and east of the Newcastle Waters Station fence line), there were some interesting ant mounds and more flowering plants.

  • Trip North - Blooming Hibiscus Plants

    We were about 40 minutes north of Elliott (~10 minutes south of the Sir Charles Todd Memorial) when Zig (1+1) spotted a field of blooming hibiscus plants. Evidently they seldom bloom in such a dry climate, so we stopped and took pictures. They were in a field on the west side of the Stuart Highway and east of the Newcastle Waters Station fence...

  • Trip North - Elliott

    The Wiki Australia Travel Guide tells us that "Elliott, the halfway point between Darwin and Alice Springs, 250 kilometres north of Tennant Creek, is predominantly a service provider to surrounding pastoralists. The town has a population of 700 and was named after Army Lieutenant Snow Elliott who established an army staging camp in the area for...

  • Renner Springs Desert Inn Bar

    We were there in the morning, so of course the bar was empty. It had a great hat collection and a very interesting bulletin board. You may also leave comments and suggestions in their suggestion box, LOL. Please note that a picture of one of their typical patrons is on the outside door. See also a YouTube Video about Jasmine, a bar maid at Renner...

  • Trip North - Renner Springs Desert Inn

    Zig (1+1) and I had left Threeways early in the morning. The sign said 136 km to Renner Springs and we arrived around 09:15. After seeing all three, I would say that the Renner Springs Desert Inn is a much nicer stop than Threeways and maybe better than Wycliffe Well. Of course, I am a person who likes quiet places. Surely the site was a sacred...

  • Renner Springs Desert Inn Accommodations

    All of the motel rooms at the Renner Springs Desert Inn have ensuite bathrooms and are non-smoking rooms. The rooms are 90-100 AUD for a single, 105-117 AUD for a double, and 140-150 AUD for a family, depending on the number of children. They have 15 powered sites and 60 unpowered sites in their caravan park with BBQ facilities, hot and cold water...

  • Renner Springs Desert Inn Shop &...

    The shop at the Renner Springs Desert Inn is open from 06:00 until 23:00. The shop has a mini-market with basic groceries and souvenirs, as well as home made bread, pies, sausage rolls, soft drinks, cigarettes, ice cream, fuel and takeaway meals. The restaurant has a separate dining area and an extensive menu. Internet access, public phones and a...

  • Trip North - Banka Banka Station

    According to the signpost at the Threeways John Flynn Memorial, Banka Banka Station is located 76 km north of Threeways and 60 km south of Renner Springs. The Station was established in 1885. Banka Banka was also an Army staging camp during World War II. Zig (1+1) and I did not stop but I took a couple of pictures as we passed by on the Stuart...

  • Threeways Roadhouse Bar and Pokies

    The Threeways Roadhouse Bar was packed. I did not go in, so I cannot say much about it. I only found out later that "pokies" are Australian poker machines. I am guessing that the bar and pokies are popular with the many road train drivers that stop at Threeways, where the major north-south highway (Stuart) meets the major highway to the east...

  • Trip North - Threeways Overall

    Since it is located at the intersection of the Stuart Highway and the Barkly Highway from the east, Threeways is another important Northern Territory destination that is surprisingly not in the VT destination taxonomy. There is even a memorial to John Flynn, the Flying Doctor, located at the original intersection of the two highways. The Threeways...

  • Trip North - Threeways John Flynn...

    Zig (1+1) and I got an early start on 25 Aug 2010. We had aready seen John Flynn's grave near Alice Springs; however, we also stopped at the Threeways John Flynn Memorial. The Very Reverend John Flynn established the Royal Australian Flying Doctors Service. He was nicknamed "Flynn of the Inland." The memorial is located at the original intersection...

  • Threeways Motel Rooms, Cabins, &...

    The Threeways Roadhouse has motel rooms, cabins, and "Glendales." I don't know what a "Glendale" is but they have pictures on their website. It says that all Glendale rooms have ensuites, air-conditioning and fans, television, fridge, and tea/coffee making facilities. Zig (1+1) and I camped, so I did not see the inside of any of the rooms or...

  • Threeways Campground

    The Threeways Campground has ~60 powered sites and ~40 tent sites. A swimming pool, BBQ area and camp kitchen are also available for campers. We were just spending one night, so we got a small, unpowered campsite for 8 AUD each. It was on the north side near the Glendales and powered camping. The nearest toilets were in the central abolution block...

  • Threeways Roadhouse Restaurant

    The restaurant at Threeways serves breakfast, lunch and dinner. You may also do take-away. I had the roast of the day (17 AUD) and a vanilla milk shake (5.60 AUD) for dinner. The roast was pretty good but the milk shake was all foam and almost no ice cream.

  • Threeways Tourist Information Center

    The Threeways Tourist Information Center was closed when we arrived and still closed the next morning when we left; however, I took some pictures outside and through the windows. It looked like it had some interesting displays and plenty of information. They also sell souvenirs. I believe the public restrooms at Threeways are provided by the...

  • Trip North - Devil's Marbles Overall...

    The Parks & Wildlife Commission of the Northern Territory (NT) fact sheet for Karlu Karlu (Devil's Marbles Conservation Reserve) has a park map. The central Loop Trail Kiosk is a good place to start. There are dunnies nearby. No fees are required for this part of the Reserve. There is also a simple bush camping area on the southeast end of the...

  • Trip South - First Day of Greyhound Bus...

    I had decided to take the Greyhound Croc Stopover Package to get from Darwin to Alice Springs. At 269 AUD, it was reasonably priced and included coach travel between Darwin and Alice Springs with 2 stops. One stop was optional and the other was an all inclusive stay at the Nitmiluk Katherine Gorge tent village for one night (shuttle to and from...

  • Trip North - Wycliffe Well Overall

    Wycliffe Well was a really nice stop on the Stuart Highway. It is located ~90 km north of Barrow Creek and ~27 km south of the Devil's Marbles turnoff. Besides its UFO fame, the Wycliffe Well Holiday Park has a restaurant, mini-market, motel rooms and cabins, camping sites (powered and unpowered), camp kitchen, swimming pool, small zoo, one-room...

  • Trip North - Tennant Creek

    I actually stopped in Tennant Creek twice in August 2010 when I went from Darwin to Alice Springs and back. Unfortunately neither time was for long. Going south on the Greyhound bus on 8 Aug 2010, we were there from 01:50 - 03:10, waiting for passengers on a connecting bus from the Barkly Highway. Unfortunately, since it was the middle of the...

  • Inside Wycliffe Well Main Building

    Wycliffe Well is a nice stop even if you don't stay there. There is a mini-market just inside the entrance. The big restaurant and the bar are just past the mini-market area. The UFO museum is in a side room. There are also a couple of computers available in a cyber cafe area on one side of the restaurant.

  • Trip South - Dunmarra Roadhouse

    The Greyhound bus (going south on the Stuart Highway) picked me up right on time at the Mataranka Homestead Tourist Resort at 18:45 on 7 Aug 2010. We arrived in Dunmarra around 21:30. The stop was for 45 minutes. I skipped the "Man Meals" at the "Dunmarra's Famous Grill" and got a "Bucket of Chips" for 3 AUD that was so big that I could not finish...

  • Trip North - Tropic of Capricorn Marker

    The Tropic of Capricorn Marker was the first stop that Zig (1+1) and I made on our way back to Darwin on 24 Aug 2010. The marker is ~29 km north of Alice Springs on the Stuart Highway. It marks where the Tropic of Capricorn crosses the highway. The Tropic of Capricorn lies at 23.5° latitude south of the Equator and runs through Australia, Chile,...

  • Karlu Karlu (Devil's Marbles...

    The Parks & Wildlife Commission of the Northern Territory (NT) fact sheet for Karlu Karlu (Devil's Marbles Conservation Reserve) tells us that Karlu Karlu is literally translated as "round boulders" by the Warumungu, Kaytetye, Alyawarra and Warlpiri people that jointly manage this registered sacred site. It is still an important meeting place for...

  • Loop Trail at Devil's Marbles - Part 3

    The Loop Trail at Devil's Marbles is ~350 meters long and takes ~20 minutes to walk. It is a self-guided walk with many signposts along the way. Topics covered in the last part of the Trail include how the boulders flake away by onion-skin weathering. The signpost has the following information.Water filtering into the outer layers of a boulder...

  • Loop Trail at Devil's Marbles - Part 2

    The Loop Trail at Devil's Marbles is ~350 meters long and takes ~20 minutes to walk. It is a self-guided walk with many signposts along the way. Topics covered in the second part of the Trail include the strange but true stories of a desert frog and crab, and how boulders are transformed into sand. The signposts have the following information.In...


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Northern Territory Off The Beaten Path

Reviews and photos of Northern Territory off the beaten path posted by real travelers and locals. The best tips for Northern Territory sightseeing.
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