The Northern Territory is Australia’s home of the outback. With its beautiful wildlife and landscapes, you’ll find plenty of opportunity for adventure here. Be sure to immerse yourself in the ancient Indigenous culture and learn more about the history of Australia. Pack your swimmers, too – there’s plenty of safe places (away from dangerous crocodiles) to swim.
Darwin: The Multicultural Capital of the NT
If you’re wondering what time of year to plan your Northern Territory adventure, try going between June and September (the dry season). While the NT is hot all year-round, a lot of swimming areas are only safe in the dry season as that’s when they’re free from saltwater crocodiles.
Fly into Darwin to start your trip in the tropical capital of the Northern Territory. Check out the many cafes, restaurants and pubs in the area, or the popular waterfront. Swim in the wave pool or saltwater lagoon, take a cruise from Stokes Hill Wharf, or hop on the Skyline Ferris Wheel to see the harbour from above. And from Thursdays through to Sundays, check out the Mindil Beach sunset markets. Sit on the sand after grabbing something to eat – there’s over 60 food stalls to choose from! If you enjoy checking out different markets, head to the pop-up open-air markets in suburbs such as Nightcliff, Parap and Palmerston.
Darwin is also renowned for its art. You can see a range of unique paintings from Aboriginal artists in over twenty museums and art galleries around the city. In particular, The Museum and Art Gallery of the NT has a great collection of both traditional and contemporary Indigenous art. It also has other rotating exhibits such as the Cyclone Tracy expo, where you can listen to actual recordings of the cyclone from the sound booth.
Or, take a day trip out to the Territory Wildlife Park. Meet native Australian animals up close, check out the nocturnal house and aquarium, or walk along the treetop bird enclosure. Whatever you decide, there’s more than enough to do in and around Darwin to start your adventure off right.
Visit Indigenous Art Galleries in Alice Springs
If you’re keen to see more art galleries, make sure to stop by Alice Springs. You’ll find the highest proportional number of art galleries out of any region in Australia. It’s also the closest town to every beach in the country! The Northern Territory is known for having a number of great golf courses, too – so make sure to pack your clubs! The Alice Springs golf course is actually ranked in the top ten desert courses in the world.
Go Swimming Under Waterfalls at Litchfield National ParkAnother must-visit stop is Litchfield National Park – just a 1.5-hour drive out of Darwin. There’s a range of beautiful swimming holes, waterfalls, rainforest bushwalks, wildlife and even four-wheel-drive tracks. Set up the RV at one of many campsites such as the Litchfield Tourist Park or the Batchelor Holiday Park.
See Australian Birdlife at Kakadu National Park
Another Northern Territory National Park worth visiting is Kakadu National Park – it’s Indigenous rock art boasts World Heritage status. You’ll find rock art galleries at Ubirr, Nourlangie and Nanguluwur, with some paintings over 20,000 years old! Plus, there’s free guided walks during the dry season and year-round Yellow Water Billabong cruises. Head out at sunrise or sunset along the Yellow River, home to over 280 Australian bird species. There’s also plenty of bushwalks around Kakadu, including walks to the top of the best waterfalls and plunge pools in the Northern Territory!