Modern, multicultural Darwin has a real laid feel befitting of a tropical escape. It’s a true city with a country town vibe with an abundance of fascinating family-friendly spaces. Scratch the surface and you’ll find ancient Dreamings, pioneering feats, and some of our nation’s most significant WWII history.
MINDIL BEACH SUNSET MARKETS
At sunset, two nights a week, Mindil Beach is abuzz in The Dry, brimming with local arts and crafts and international cuisine.
Stock your Christmas socks with leather goods, Indigenous art and hand-made jewellery. Or just marvel at the free street theatre and circus antics before throwing down the beach towel for a memorable dining experience and a Timor Sea sunset serenade.
LITCHFIELD NATIONAL PARK, EASIER TO ACCESS
Magnificent waterfalls and plunge pools await at this spectacular tropical urban park. It’s just an hour and a half from Darwin, and becoming more accessible than ever before with the final stretch of the main touring route, Litchfield Park Road, undergoing sealing for easier touring in The Wet.
And, for the four-wheel-drive adventurer, long forgotten gorges will reward, with a new cluster of 4WD tracks in the Litchfield Central Valley underway.
BERRY SPRINGS NATURE PARK
Closer still, is the beautiful Berry Springs Nature Park with shaded crystal clear swimming pools, and lovely barbecue and picnic areas throughout. Watch for native flowers in bloom between March to April.
World War II enthusiasts will find relics on a network of walks, while twitchers will tick bird species off their lists at various Top End habitats.
KICKING BACK IN THE WAVE LAGOON
In the waterfront precinct, catch a wave to cool down. Or rest-up waterside on a banana lounge close to fabulous restaurants at the Waterfront Wave Lagoon. Operating year-round, the popular waterfront wet area isn’t all waves, with a shaded relaxation lagoon also on-site.
Float within an inflatable ring in the shallows or crest the waves on a boogie board, available to use with the purchase of your entry fee.
GEORGE BROWN DARWIN BOTANIC GARDENS
Expect a lot from this centrally-located botanic gardens set within a tropical paradise. A wide network of pathways weave beneath towering palms, across fern-edged waterfall and alongside healing plants that’ve cured ails for millenia.
Enjoy the mangroves, brilliant orchids and glorious frangipanis at your own pace or enjoy fascinating commentary aboard a personal transporter on a Segway Tour.
DARWIN MILITARY MUSEUM
Wander through de-commissioned artillery at the heavily fortified East Point, one of Darwin’s most prettiest sunset sites. Here, in a modern dwelling, you’ll find a fitting tribute to modern Navy, Army and Air Force items from Australian, US and other armed forces.
RFDS DARWIN TOURIST FACILITY
The RFDS Darwin Tourist facility provides a real hands-on experience for young and old, with volunteer histories, technological milestones and aircraft timelines easily accessed on virtual reality interfaces and audio video displays.
Onsite, you can also explore the historic Qantas Hanger, a cyclone and WWII survivor near stationary engines and vehicles.
Hold a baby salt-water crocodile, watch gliding whipray in a 200,000L aquarium or adjust your eyes for an eye-level view of the endangered olive python in the Nocturnal Reptile House at Crocosaurus Cove. You’ll meet some really amazing animals throughout the park, during live shows or on private animal encounters, including endangered Top End turtle.
MUSEUM AND ART GALLERY OF THE NORTHERN TERRITORY, MAGNT
Darwin’s remarkable history is beautifully recorded at the Museum and Art Gallery of the Northern Territory. Uncover unique challenges pioneers faced forging a life in extreme conditions, and the role Indigenous locals played in their success and survival. Or, immerse yourself in startling real-life audio from the 1974 Cyclone Tracy disaster.
The audio and photo exhibits here are truly haunting.