Australias Timeless North

Ubirr Sunset, NT
Gunlom Falls, Kakadu National Park, NT
Nourlangie Rock, NT

Australia's Timeless North

Australia’s Timeless North is a land of amazing contrasts - tropical and lush in some places; red and barren in others. This is a landscape of vast national parks which embrace verdant wetlands, towering sandstone cliffs, plunging gorges and abundant wildlife. With its ancient Aboriginal connection, here the stories of the Dreamtime are shared on cliff-face galleries in the greatest and oldest collections of rock art in the world.

Experience Kakadu’s magic in six dramatically different seasons, cruise crocodile-filled waterways, visit an Indigenous settlement in Arnhem Land or follow the trail of the Jawoyn traditional owners in Nitmiluk National Park.

Four special things about Australia's Timeless North

Nourlangie rock art, NT
Nourlangie rock art, NT

1. Ancient art and living culture

Take the time to immerse yourself in Kakadu’s spiritual richness, its Dreaming stories and secrets. Let Aboriginal guides lead you through the wilderness to rich, detailed rock art ‘galleries’ such as Nourlangie Rock, Anbangang Gallery and Ubirr Rock. See Dreaming ancestors such as the Rainbow Serpent and Lightning Man etched into the walls. Stay overnight with Aboriginal families, learning traditional weaving and hunting, and the art of didgeridoo playing from them. Visit a cultural centre or take a cruise through the waterways and wetlands, hearing stories of another time.

Jesus bird, Kakadu National Park, NT
Jesus bird, Kakadu National Park, NT

2. Thriving nature

Walk around the Mamukala Wetlands past magpie geese, egrets, heron, spoonbills, sea eagles, ducks and dancing brolgas. Of the 280 bird species that live in Kakadu, those which are unique include the magpie goose, chestnut-quilled rock pigeon and white-throated grass wren. Cruise East Alligator River past crocodiles and see jesus birds swapping lily pads. Spot wallaroos, dingoes, possums, bats and dusky rats in the woodlands. A quarter of all Australian freshwater fish species can be found in Kakadu and you can fish for barramundi from many places including East Alligator River and Jim Jim Creek.

Storm over Floodplains
Storm over Floodplains

3. Six dramatically different seasons

Kakadu experiences six different seasons during the year. See thundering waterfalls and lightening in the Gudjewg monsoon season from January to March. Experience ‘knock em down storms’ in the Banggerreng month of April. Yegge, from May to mid-June, brings dry winds to wetlands covered with water lilies. In the milder Wurrgeng months of June and August, you’ll see migratory birds around the billabongs. During Gurrung, from mid-August to mid-September, the weather is hot and dry. The first life-giving storms come in the Gunumeleng pre-monsoon season from mid-October to late December.

To fully appreciate the grandeur of Kakadu, soar over the Arnhem Land escarpment and majestic Gunlom, Twin and Jim Jim Falls on a scenic flight.

Katherine Gorge, Nitmiluk National Park, NT
Katherine Gorge, Nitmiluk National Park, NT

4. Follow the traditional owners

At the southern end of the National Landscape sits Nitmiluk National Park with its dramatic waterfalls and the spectacular Katherine Gorge, a series of sandstone gorges carved over millions of years. The deep red gorges contain many significant rock art sites. The park can be explored through leisurely day walks, cruises or the more challenging five-day Jatbula Trail, a 59-kilometre trek which follows the song line of the local Jawoyn traditional owners. Stop and explore Mary River and Garig Gunak National Parks. The ‘Nature’s Way’ driving route connects many of these destinations from Darwin along the Kakadu, Arnhem and Stuart Highways.

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