I have 10 days in Darwin. I'm planning on renting a car and want to see places like kakadu, katherine gorge, lichtfield national park etc, as well as having a few days in Darwin itself. To get to those three areas outside of Darwin, any suggestions for places to stay, things to see? As I travel around, any places I should stop to see? What should I see/do in Darwin city?
In Kakadu Jim Jim Falls are fantastic, if you can get in there? Litchfield national park is great too, I would check out some of the Adventure Tours tours as they are fantastic.
The best hostel in Darwin by far is the Mellaluca on Mitchell, a pool bar is pretty damn cool.
It all depends on what you want to do. over 7 years ago
Here is a guide to Darwin city that you may find helpful. My favs include the Mindil Beach Markets, and Hanuman restaurant (on Mitchell Street, where most of the dining/nightlife in the city is).
I normally prefer self-drives but to get the best of the parks I would recommend a tour - if you are self driving rent a good 4x4 as a lot of the good spots (like Jim Jim) are a bit off the beaten track and require some serious offroading skills! about 7 years ago
I just came back from a week in Darwin (and surrounds). Don't underestimate the distance you will need to travel. I went on a two day tour to Kakadu and we travelled around 1000km.
I recommend going on a tour to Kakadu (though 3 days would be better than 2) as there is a lot of distance to travel, and at least if someone else is driving you can snooze on the bus and won't be tried out by the time you get there - to see most of the good stuff you need a 4WD vehicle (I was on a 4WD bus). On the way out to Kakadu things to see are Corroborree Billabong (highly recommend booking a 1/2 or full day barramundi fishing trip for there) and jumping crocodiles cruises on the river. Once you get there, Jim Jim falls, Twin falls are good. But there is so much terrain that its hard to know where to go - best to have a guide. Litchfield I'd suggest driving yourself though - the all the tours just seem to take you to the jumping crocs in the morning and Litchfield in the afternoon - but they only take you the places to swim in Litchfield really. The places we went swimming in Kakadu were far more spectacular than Litchfield (and less crowded). Don't even attempt Litchfield on a weekend - it'll be packed.
Arround Darwin the Mindil Beach markets are good (Thursday & Sunday nights). about 7 years ago
Best time to visit Darwin is in the Dry Season (April/May until Sep/Oct) because when the wet season strikes, a number of the roads to the national parks get cut off.
If you don't have much time, I'd suggest getting a rental vehicle and go to Litchfield national park. There are a number of waterfalls, water holes that you can jump into there, although during the dry season it can be rather busy with backpackers. Although it is important to note that most of the tourists don't seem to stay the night, so it's not a bad idea to camp over night at Litchfield and sleep under the stars.
During the wet season, Litchfield waterfalls are very free flowing (I'd suggest trying to get through to them in late Feb). Just be wary of the fresh-water crocodiles that can sometimes swim up steam. :-)
Kakadu is another popular place to visit, previous posts have already mentioned the better attractions to visit so I won't cover them.
If you are renting a car, I'd also suggest heading to Katherine Gorge which is located in Nitmiluk National Park (about three hours South of Darwin). Very spectacular place to visit. The best way to see the gorge is to kayak/cannon down through it - although if you are feeling a little lazy, you can do a scenic cruise/flight.
In Darwin City itself you have Mitchell St which is where majority of pubs and restaurants are. City restaurant suggestions are Hanumans, Garam Masala, Char, Thai-licious and Moorish Cafe. Pubs - The Deck Bar, The Tap Bar, The Wisdom Bar ('enlightenment through beer') and The Ducks Nuts. A little outside of Darwin you've got Cullen Bay (A lot less touristy), which has some decent restaurants (Buzz Cafe). Also try the wharf, where you can get a cheap eat and feed the moon fish.
Also, try Tommo's Pies (Mitchell St), especially after a later night out :-)
Recently they have opened up a novelty theme park in the city, which allows you to swim (inside a cage) with a large salt water croc. Interesting idea that seems rather popular. about 7 years agoAnswered by Simo Porter via Travellr.com