The Northern Territory's tropical capital
Darwin is nirvana for adventurers. Here you'll find a history-drenched harbour landscape, the tropical lifestyle you’d expect of an outdoorsy culture and some of the world's most awe-inspiring natural treasures.
Join a fishing charter to experience the Mary River Wetlands, or take a cruise. Marvel at majestic waterfalls and waterholes, or go on a four-wheel drive with the world’s most beautiful flora as backdrop. Or walk through the incredible Litchfield National Park. Feast on Southeast Asian flavours at renowned restaurants (don’t miss Hanuman), and at local favourite weekend markets.
Things to do: Darwin
Swim with crocs at Crocosaurus Cove
Australia's Top End is home to the famous giant 'salties' (saltwater crocodiles). You can visit them in the world’s largest display of Australian reptiles at Crocosaurus Cove opens in new window. Swim with the crocs (safely enclosed), hold a cuter-than-expected baby crocodile, and see the turtle sanctuary and aquariums. Then, if you dare, the main attraction: enter the 'Cage of Death', Australia’s only crocodile dive, with a 5m-long saltwater croc. A lifetime of nightmares awaits.
Catch an outdoor movie at Deckchair Cinema
Every night from April to November, lean back and enjoy a film at the Deckchair Cinema opens in new window, operated by the Darwin Film Society. With the sunset over the sea as backdrop and fairy lights twinkling, you can catch the latest Australian and foreign films, family-friendly and classic movies. Snacks and hot food are available or you can bring a picnic; wine and beer are on sale from the kiosk and there's free chilled filtered water on tap.
Image credit: Tourism NT/Friederike Franze
Hit the Mindil Beach Sunset Market
Every Thursday and Sunday between late April and late October, Darwin locals head to the Mindil Beach Sunset Market opens in new window, tables, chairs, rugs and eskies in tow. They're heading for an outdoor feast fuelled by the market's awesome food stalls: think Thai, Indian, Sri Lankan, Chinese, Malaysian, Brazilian, Greek, Portuguese and many more. Indulge in a massage, shop for handmade jewellery, try some natural remedies, or just take in the buzzing market atmosphere against the backdrop of the Timor Sea.
Image credit: Tourism NT/Helen Orr
Take a road trip, Nature’s Way
The Nature’s Way opens in new window scenic drive from Darwin to Katherine via Kakadu National Park makes for a spectacular road trip. It’s a 550km journey, which you can do either as a one-way-and-stay or as a longer loop back to Darwin. We recommend you make the trip over at least seven days, so you can take a dip in waterfalls and rock pools at Litchfield, canoe down the Katherine River and discover Aboriginal rock art at Kakadu.
Image credit: Tourism NT/Sean Scott
Take a scenic flight
For a breathtakingly dramatic experience of the incredible landscapes of the Top End – Kakadu National Park, Arnhem Land, Adelaide River and Mary River – take a scenic flight opens in new window from Darwin. You’ll get spectacular aerial views of lush wetlands, rocky escarpments, plunging gorges and misty waterfalls, and maybe spot saltwater crocs, wild pigs and water buffalo.
Image credit: Tourism NT/Helen Orr
Distance to city centre 13km
Taxi A taxi to central Darwin will take around 15 minutes and cost about AUD $25-30 (plus a AUD $4 airport surcharge).
Rideshare You'll find the rideshare pick-up point in the Short Stay car park.
Shuttle The Darwin City shuttle bus, operated by Blue Taxi company, runs 10am-6pm Sunday to Friday and costs AUD $15 per person.
Bus There's a public bus stop on Charles Eaton Drive. It's about a 10-minute walk from the terminal.Back to top
When to go
There's only one thing you need to know about Darwin weather: there's a wet season (November–April) and a dry season (May–October). The dry season is the most popular time to visit – it offers more opportunity to explore the more remote areas that are often off-limits during the wet.
The dry season is characterised by warm, dry, sunny days and cool nights. Temperatures range from 21 to 32°C, and humidity levels are between 60% and 65%. The wet season is characterised by humidity levels in excess of 80%, followed by monsoonal rains and storms. Temperatures range from 25 to 33°C.
Darwin’s events calendar is at its busiest in the dry. Highlights include the Darwin Festival opens in new window and Darwin Aboriginal Art Fair opens in new window (August), the Darwin Street Art Festival opens in new window (August–September), and the Mindil Beach Sunset Market opens in new window (April–October).Back to top