G’day Travelers! I’ve just gotten back from covering yet another event, this time in the Northern Territory. The trip gave me my very first chance to head to Darwin, where I got to spend 24 hours exploring the sights and sounds of the most northern city in Australia.
The city of Darwin, is a fairly modern city, with a history of being rebuilt. The first time Darwin had to be rebuilt was after falling victim to bombing raids by the Japanese during World War 2. While it’s most recent rebuild was due to the destruction caused by Cyclone Tracy in 1974.
As I mentioned it was my very first trip to the top end of Australia, and I didn’t have any expectations on what I might find there. Much like my trip to Launceston earlier in the year, it was great to go somewhere completely new and genuinely explore somewhere for the first time.
First stop of the day had to be Crocosaurus Cove. A trip to Darwin just isn’t complete without a Crocodile experience, so I wanted to make sure I ticked that box early. There are plenty of options for Crocodile experiences in and around Darwin, but Crocosaurus Cove appealed to me because it was in the center of town.
They offer a variety of Croc based experiences. You’re able to hold baby salt water crocs for a photo opportunity, or the brave are able to jump into the “Cage of Death” for an up close and personal experience with the much larger crocs.
There’s also a variety of Australian wildlife on display in the complex, with also sorts of Australian snakes and reptiles. They also have a great display showing the differences of the different Crocodiles and Alligators from around the world. Well worth dropping to see while in Darwin.
For more information about Crocosaurus Cove check out there website – http://www.crocosauruscove.com/
Smith Street Mall
Next stop was the Smith Street Mall to grab some lunch and pick up some souvenirs from the trip. There were plenty of touristy shops up and down the mall, so it didn’t take long to pick up a couple of touristy mementos for the people back at home and get on with exploring.
I wandered south from the center of town, down to the Darwin Waterfront and the Stokes Hill Wharf. I didn’t realise how much there was to do here with Wave Pools, an Aquarium, Restaurants, Government House and the World War 2 Oil Storage Tunnels in the area.
I spent a bit of time walking around and exploring, being constantly reminded that I should have packed my board shorts. There’s also a few hotels here that looked like they’d be nice to stay at, I’ll remember that for next time. There is plenty to see and do in the area, more than I planned on seeing, so after checking out what was in the area I head up to Bicentennial Park to continue to see what else I could find.
Walk Along The Coast
Bicentennial Park stretches along the coast line, offering stunning views over the Port of Darwin. The park has its fair share of things to see and do also, with several memorials setup along the walk.
I continued to walk north along the coast until I reached Darwin’s Skycity Casino. Setup in a stunning location on the beach, I wasn’t really interested in gambling, but it was a good opportunity to grab a cool refreshing beverage and cool down for a bit. The 33 degree (Celsius) day was little bit hotter than I’d started to get use to for winter.
Unfortunately they frown upon you using cameras in the casino so I didn’t take any photos of the stunning views.
The plan was to continue to walk along the coast to the Museum and Art Gallery of the Northern Territory. However I’d already walked about 30k’s and decide the beach looked like a good place to relax, kick the shoes off and enjoy the sensational weather.
I just so happened to be lucky enough to stumble upon the famous Mindil Markets. There was huge variety of food stalls setup and some other touristy shops as well. I picked up some food and sat on the beach to catch the sunset. The previously quiet Mindil Beach was flocked to buy tourists and locals a like all enjoying some good food, good music and the sun dropping down into the ocean.
The Mindil Markets are held every Thursday and Sunday during the dry season. To find out more head to – http://www.mindil.com.au/
24 hours just wasn’t enough to do Darwin justice. I’ll definitely be heading back there in the future to spend some more time exploring the sights. A trip to the Kakadu National Park is also on the cards next time I’m up that way.
Have you been to the Darwin before? Feel free to leave your suggestions or tips of your own with a comment below so I can check them out the next time I’m in town.
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