Wangi Falls, Litchfield National Park, Northern Territory © Tourism NT/Matt Cherubino
A day exploring Litchfield National Park
Jump in a swimming hole, marvel at a termite mound and swim beneath (or soar above) waterfalls during a day in Litchfield.
Just a 1.5-hour drive from Darwin lies Litchfield National Park – a place of nature so epic, you’ll want to stay much longer than a day.
But if you’re short on time, you can discover Litchfield’s highlights with this one-day itinerary.
8:00 am: Drive to Litchfield National Park
Get an early start to make the most of your day in Litchfield National Park. From Darwin, drive about 1.5 hours along the Stuart Highway until you reach the turn off to Batchelor. Stop in to see this cute township before continuing the drive to Litchfield.
9:30 am: Marvel at Magnetic Termite Mounds
One of Litchfield’s most impressive sights, the Magnetic Termite Mounds stand up to two metres (6.5 feet) high and can be more than 100 years old. Stop by the nearby information centre to learn about the fascinating creates that build these natural structures. Snap a few photos before hopping back in the car.
10:30 am: Swim at Florence Falls
Another ten-minute drive will bring you to Florence Falls, your first swimming stop of the day. From the Florence Falls car park, walk just three minutes to a viewing platform that offers breathtaking views over the gorge and pools below. Continue down the staircase to be met with a crystal-clear plunge pool, along with two cascading waterfalls – they’re especially impressive after the wet season ends in April. A platform makes it easy to slip into the refreshing water.
12:30 pm: Head to Buley Rockhole
This is where the real waterhole-hopping begins. From Florence Falls, choose between driving a few minutes down the road, or taking the 3.2-kilometre (two-mile) walking track that connects to Buley Rockhole. Buley Rockhole is perfectly picturesque, a series of natural pools that flow from one to the next. If you brought a packed picnic, find a spot on the water’s edge to enjoy. Otherwise, simply slip into the water and wait for the café at your next stop.
2:00 pm: Off to Wangi Falls
If there’s one waterfall not to be missed in Litchfield, it’s Wangi Falls, a 25-minute drive from Buley Rockhole. The falls are home to expansive manicured lawns, a picnic area and a café, but what makes this place a must-do is the pristine natural beauty. Two breathtaking waterfalls plunge over the rock escarpments and splash into the waterhole below. Take another dip here, or if the pool is closed due to dangerous currents, embark on the three-kilometre (1.9-mile) loop track that takes you up and over the falls.
4:00 pm: Choose your own adventure
From Wangi, you have the option of continuing your travels further west or beginning your drive back to Darwin. If you choose to continue deeper into the park, be sure to stop by the lesser-known swimming spots of Walker Creek and the Cascades; both require a bit of a hike to reach them, but ditching the crowds to sit back in these calm, flat rock pools is a truly special experience.
If you choose to head back to Darwin, don’t go direct. Instead, complete the loop and head toward Berry Springs. The road here is partially dirt and may not be recommended for hire cars, however, it is often graded. At Berry Springs, you can go for a swim, birdwatch or even spot aquatic life under the surface (bring along your goggles). Be sure to stop at Crazy Acres for homemade ice cream and smoothies, or take a seat at the Berry Springs Tavern for a drink and an early dinner.
5:30 pm: Drive back to Darwin
It’s about a 45-minute drive back to Darwin from Berry Springs. Settle into your Darwin hotel, and be sure to stay a few days to swim (safely) with a croc, go to a bustling night market and take a sunset cruise.