Head north and explore the amazing top of Australia. Here are six ideas to get you started.
- Important: Australia’s North-Coronavirus travel rules vary by state. See up-to-date details here
1. Explore the island industry
Board a 15-meter luxury cell Darwin catamaran and go on a three-day trip to an industrial shelter in the Tui Islands, 60 kilometers north of the NT capital.
Dubbed the ‘Smiling Islands’, Tuis is home to multiple indigenous artists, including painters who use ocher paint over acrylics; Sculptors specializing in totem animal iron wood designs; And screen printers who create brightly colored fabrics with a host of unique designs. Wander around the island’s three industrial centers to absorb the entire gamut, and choose a TI creation for maintenance.
Back in Catamaran, inside the ship’s ‘floor hump’ is a fish for earthen crab or lounge that provides windows to the life of the sea below. One of the spiritual hosts on your boat – Darwin-Catherine Donnie – is a local spinner, so ask her survival-cyclone-Tracy story, among other stories.
85 per person from 1485, saildarwin.com.au .com
Unique local artefacts of the TI Islands. Photo: Tourism NT / Zilamara Arts and Crafts Association
2. Float outward
Get up on Alice Springs in a very early morning balloon ride. This one-hour flight, powered by outback balloons, starts 15 kilometers south of Alice from Ol Springs Cattle Station. This allows for a surprisingly silent, almost meditative opportunity from which to view the wide, picturesque landscape below.
Try watching the swarms of bright-feathered buzzards or red kangaroos jump through Spinefex and Mulga scrubs.
Your journey ends with a glass of champagne served after landing – a tradition among the early French balloonists that carried bubbles to indulge farmers who leaned towards their properties to uninterrupted balloonists.
One Hour Flight, 395, OutbackBalling.com
Ballooning Outback: Yes, please. Photo: Tourism NT / Jackson Groves
3. Lounge in the natural eternal pool
Float one afternoon on Gunalam Falls in Kakadu National Park, where there is an infinity pool flowing from a high pond 1m below the pool for one mountaineering after another.
Find a spot on the site of the Gunalam camp and track the waterfall up to a steep one kilometer. From here, the views extend into the lower valleys below, and just before sunset, the surrounding cliffs spread out in deep orange and blue-pink shades.
The next morning, head to the nearby waterfall Maguk, where another series of infinite pools lie behind a larger (but equally glorious) immersion pool.
Entrance fee to Kakadu National Park, ড 25 per person, more info here
As far as the eyeballs can be seen in the stunning Gonlam Falls. Photo: Tourism NT / Nicholas Cavo
4. In bed on the buffalo farm
Embarrassing in Kakadu National Park, a three-hour drive from Darwin, lies the Bamurru Plain Safari Lodge. It is a working buffalo station and a huge one – about 70,000 hectares.
Although many guests prefer to arrive on a chartered plane, driving allows you to take in the wildlife on the property’s vast expanses (think blue-winged cocaburras, forest kingfishers, corals, brambies and magpie geese).
Meals are served in an open-air lodge, and activities include Baramundi fishing, airboat safaris and swamps in this peaceful pocket of private land – one that allows guests to sink into the bushes rather than their inbox.
Enter your cabin as soon as night falls, rug made from a mixture of wrought iron, wood and mesh. The latter creates a transparent wall, so it would seem that there is nothing to separate you from the floodplains outside of it.
Per person, from 11 1140 per night, Bamruplance.com
Just you and the amazing landscape on the Bamaru plain. Photo: Tourism NT
5. Take the path to a waterfall
A jaw-dropping beautiful top and bushwalk named after Peter Jatbular, a Javanese elder, to fight for the success of the Nitmiluk National Park in the Katherine region
The trail follows the old Stock Route and the winds through the rocky country have been going on for thousands of years in Zavin. The Jatbula trail also leads to the Arnham Land Escort Line and includes timber lands, rainforests, sandstone plateau scrubs and river banks.
The space of each camp is melted and peaceful. Far from considering the daily walking distance, you’ll have plenty of time to live inside the billowing, streams or rock holes that accompany each site (so pack a book!)!
Camping fees, 30 to 3.30 per night, jatbulatrail.com.au
Take the Jatbular Trail to the foot of history. Photo: Tourism NT / Peter Eve
6. Luxury in the desert
The bed under the star blanket at the Red Center at Glamping Destination Longitude 131. The accommodation – its 15 elegant ‘tents’, roofed raised huts made of white sails – is tapped in a private patch of desert 27 kilometers from Uluru (and Prince William and wife Kate Middleton had their stay on their last NT tour).
Along with the sights from each tent, the main dining area is revealed near the cliff and the food includes lime fingers, desert quandong and bush taka ingredients like watlisid.
Taylor your stay to include patriarchal cultural discussions at the beginning of Ulura, pleasant flights over Kata Tajuta, and dinner at Table 131 – a kitchen experience set in the sand dunes where food is paired with wine and lanterns are lit at night.
Packages from 00 1700 per person per night (two nights minimum), longitude 131.com.au
Personal and beautiful – and this is just the beginning of what Longitude 131 will give you. Photo: Tourism NT / George Apostolidis