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National Park, Katherine
Gorge, Tropical Darwin
5 day Natures Ways from Darwin to Litchfield, Kakadu and
Katherine in Northern Territory selfdrive suggested itinerary
• Access: 2 Wheel Drive on sealed and minor unsealed roads
• Start: From Darwin
• Return: To Darwin in Northern Territory Australia
• Highlights: Litchfield National Park, Katherine Gorge,
Kakadu National Park
Nature's Way winds through a wetland wilderness steeped in Aboriginal
culture and pioneering history.
The triangular drive begins in Darwin, the capital of the Northern
Territory, and meanders through the Adelaide and Mary River wetlands
to World Heritage-listed Kakadu National Park - owned and jointly
managed by a number of Aboriginal clans. Then it's on to Litchfield
National Park with its stunning waterfalls and return to Darwin.
For photographic, wildlife and bird watching enthusiasts, this is
a dream drive on a fully sealed road - suitable for a two-wheel-drive
Day 1: Darwin to Kakadu National Park
On this day travel a total 250 kms from Darwin to Jabiru in
Kakadu National Park. Depart Darwin on the Explorer's Way and turn
left onto the Arnhem Highway. From there turn right and
the jumping crocodile cruise is located on their private stretch
of the Adelaide River at the end of Fogg Dam Road. All in all it
was about 75 minutes since you leave Darwin. I then followed to
the right on a dirt track form some 5klm to Harry Bowmans - Adelaide
River Crocodile cruise. (Please note motorhome access may not be
permitted but there are other Crocodile cruises leaving from the
Adelaide River Bridge a bit further up.
Last we heard it was $43 for a adult and $16 for a child with 4
cruises a day and the boat capivity is 30 folks. Cruise times are
9am, 11am, 1pm, 3pm Daily from May to November.
Continue along to Jabiru in the World Heritage-listed Kakadu National
Birdwatchers and nature lovers should stop along the way at the
Fogg Dam Conservation Reserve, Window on the Wetlands Visitor Centre
and a jumping crocodile cruise on the Adelaide River.
Spend the night in the township of Jabiru.
From Jabiru (Town in the heart of Kakadu)
•Jabiru to Cooinda – 55 kms.
•Jabiru to Pine Creek – 214 kms.
•Jabiru to Katherine – 302.84 kms.
•Jabiru to Litchfield – 301.7 kms via Arnhem Highway
•Jabiru to Litchfield – 381.3 kms via Kakadu Highway.
•Jabiru to Ubirr Rock Art Site & East Alligator River – approx 46klms.
Day 2. Kakadu National Park
Spend the next day experiencing Kakadu.
There are many Aboriginal rock art sites, walks to escarpment lookouts,
waterfalls and impressive visitor centres towards the south end
of the park near Cooinda.
On the way stop in at Bowali
There are also day trip options with indigenous experiences and
boat cruises. Join a river or billabong cruise, the best place to
experience Kakadu's prolific wildlife with a local Aboriginal guide.
Camp the night at Cooinda.
Situated 3 hours from Darwin, Gagudju Campsite and cabins Cooinda
offers convenient access to Kakadu National Park attractions. Take
the Stuart Highway south from Darwin, then transfer to the Arnhem
Highway towards Jabiru. Travel approximately 225 kilometres then
turnoff to the Pine Creek Highway and travel 54 kilometres to the
Day 3. Katherine Gorge
Travel early after sunrise on full light from Cooinda to Katherine
township stop for a break then down to Katherine Gorge around approx.
30 klm away.
to get to Katherine Gorge in Nitmiluk National Park
Distance between Katherine (Northern Territory) and Cooinda (Northern
Territory) by car is 176.0 km in a straight line. So say 250klm
How to get to Nitmiluk National Park located in the Top End of
Australia's Northern Territory.
The Park has two main points of visitor access. The Park's main
entrance is located 30 km northeast of Katherine via a sealed road.
Katherine is located 310 km south of Darwin along the Stuart Highway.
Leliyn (Edith Falls) on the western side of the Park, is reached
by turning off the Stuart Highway 42km north of Katherine then following
a sealed road for a further 19km
Day 4: Pine Creek
Depart Katherine Gorge and continue north to Pine Creek. Gold was
discovered at Pine Creek in 1871 and the original buildings built
back in the heady gold days still stand. Pine Creek's attractions
include a Railway Station that was built in 1888 and Miners' Park
which houses original mining machinery.
Head back onto the Explorer's Way to Litchfield National Park if
time permits follow the Litchfield Loop tourism drive and see one
of two of the waterfalls today. Florence Falls, Tolmer Falls, a
refreshing swim at Buley Rockhole or the spring-fed Florence Falls.
Spend the night in its gateway township of Batchelor.
Day 5: Litchfield National Park
Spend the morning early lunchtime exploring Litchfield following
the Litchfield Loop tourism drive on the bushwalking tracks, admiring
the bird and wildlife species, and swimming in the crystal-clear
waterholes under thundering waterfalls that flow year-round.
At the end of the day, drive the hour-and-a-half back up the highway
to Darwin. Stopping at Adelaide River before continueing back to
Darwin. On the way stop at Adelaide River and visit the Adelaide
River Railway Station and Adelaide River War Cemetery to learn about
the local history.
Have a spare day before you fly out of Darwin then look around
around the tropical city of Darwin
Day 6: Around Darwin: Darwin City Sights Spend the morning
relaxing and enjoy brunch at one of the many cafes or restaurants
along Mitchell Street or at Cullen Bay Marina. Spend the day walking
around town and taking in the sights. In Darwin city follow the
Historical Walk to discover the city's history and see Parliament
House and Survivors Lookout for a view accoss the wharf precinct.
Just out of town take a scenic walk along the coast of Darwin Harbour,
past Mindil Beach and the Museum and Art Gallery of the Northern
• Fatigue causes many crashes in Australia.
• When driving long distances, stop and rest every 1-2 hours.
• Try to have someone sit beside you to keep you company driving
as our NT roads can be long and straight.
• Alcohol and driving don’t mix.
• For experienced drivers the blood alcohol level is 0.05.
• Provisional drivers and young drivers may not have any alcohol
• Seat belts and child restraints must be worn by all vehicle occupants.
• Always carry a copy of your driver’s license in English.
• Take plenty of water on all Outback trips;
• check distances and driving conditions;
• and ensure you have adequate petrol at all times.
• Remember, rule ‘Number 1’ in the Outback: if your car breaks down
you MUST stay with your vehicle for safety reasons.
• Don’t drive after dark.
• Parks & Wildlife Commission Northern Territory provides information
on camping, National Parks, and permits.
• Ensure you are informed re the safety of swimming in the ‘Top
End’ – many areas are not safe to swim due to crocodiles.
• Call +61 (0) 8 8999 4401 for information.
Find a self drive 4wd hire, camper, motorhome or camper
rental across Australia
• See our specials on the search pad on the left or email
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Minimum rental is 5 days return or 7 days minimum one way.
• Tropical Darwin in Australia
- Over 500 photo's and 150 pages of great free useful travel guide
• Kakadu National
Park in Australia - Over 350 photo's and 125 pages of great free
useful travel guide tourist information
National Park in Australia - Over 300 photo's and 100 pages of great
free useful travel guide tourist information
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