Aboriginal cultural experiences: Northern Territory

Journey with us to this magical land, where unspoiled wilderness, sprawling outback and vibrant First Nations culture intersect.

Ancient rock art at Ubirr (Kakadu), depicting a long-neck turtle. The Northern Territory is an incredible place to learn about Aboriginal Australia. Image credit: Tourism NT/Helen Orr.
  • Jetstar
  • March 2022

With its diverse range of language groups and landscapes, the Northern Territory is a fascinating place to immerse yourself in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander culture. Multi-day tours through national parks, world-famous rock paintings, contemporary art galleries and history in every direction: the possibilities are mind-boggling. Here are some of the best cultural experiences in Darwin (home to the Larrakia people) and surrounding areas.

Darwin

Two-hour Aboriginal Culture Experience

Try basket-weaving, spear-throwing and didgeridoo-playing with this hands-on experience on the Adelaide River Flood Plains, less than an hour’s drive from Darwin. You’ll learn about culture and Country, bush medicine and bush tucker, and enjoy some tasty damper – complete with scenic billabong views!

Young Aboriginal woman shows a female tourist a native plant at Pudakul, Northern Territory. Image credit: Tourism NT/Nick Pincott.
An easy drive from Darwin, the Adelaide River Flood Plains make a lovely setting for Pudakul’s cultural experiences. Image credit: Tourism NT/Nick Pincott

Didgeridoo Hut and Art Gallery

Most of the stunning art and craft at this wonderful gallery has been created on site by local First Nations artists. You might even see someone at work when you visit. Located in Humpty Doo, just out of Darwin, the Hut showcases handmade didgeridoos, woven baskets and a fabulous range of paintings. Every piece sold comes with a story, providing cultural context and information about its artist.

See local artists at work at the Didgeridoo Hut Aboriginal art gallery in Humpty Doo, Northern Territory. Image credit: Tourism NT/Shaana McNaught.
See Torres Strait Islander artists at work at the Didgeridoo Hut in Humptydoo. Image credit: Tourism NT/Shaana McNaught

Litchfield National Park day tour

Of the NT’s 80-plus national parks and reserves, Litchfield is one of the closest to Darwin. On this unforgettable guided day tour, you’ll get to know the park from the perspective of its Traditional Owners. Learn about its history and ongoing cultural significance. Marvel at beautiful spots you probably wouldn’t find by yourself, and enjoy a dip in a pristine freshwater swimming hole.

See Aboriginal artists at work at the Didgeridoo Hut in Humptydoo. Image credit: Tourism NT/Shaana McNaught
Visit spiritually important waterfalls and stone country, ancient rainforest and unspoilt woodland on this incredible tour of Litchfield National Park.

Ubirr walk, Kakadu National Park

One of Kakadu National Park’s most famous spots, Ubirr is like an ancient, open-air gallery – and easily viewed from an accessible walking track. Featuring ancient paintings of native animals (including a thylacine, extinct on the mainland for more than 2,000 years), scenes depicting first European contact and Dreamtime stories, it’s unmissable. Top tip: time your visit so you can take in the glorious sunset views from the look-out.

young blonde woman looks at ancient rock art, Ubirr (Kakadu National Park). Image credit: Tourism NT/Helen Orr
Ubirr (Kakadu National Park) is an excellent place to see rock art. Image credit: Tourism NT/Helen Orr