Where to see crocodiles around Darwin

The best way to see a crocodile around Darwin is by enjoying the region's many wonderful parks and guided tours. Where to see crocodiles around Darwin
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Where to see crocodiles around Darwin

The best way to see a crocodile around Darwin is by enjoying the region's many wonderful parks and guided tours. 

By Jac Taylor

Few animals around Darwin fascinate visitors as much as these prehistoric creatures. Although both freshwater and saltwater crocodiles are found around the waters and river systems surrounding the city, it is the larger species - the saltwater crocodile - that captures the imaginations of both locals and tourists. With their sheer size – growing up to seven metres (23 feet) long – they resemble dinosaurs more than any modern-day animal. A trip to Darwin isn’t complete without seeing the world's largest reptiles for yourself. Here are the best places to see crocodiles around Darwin.

Crocosaurus Cove

A wildlife park where even the kids can get interactive with crocodiles? It can be done at Crocosaurus Cove, right in the centre of Darwin. Take the free tour of the park to watch some of the largest crocodile get fed, and grab a fishing rod to feed the baby crocs yourself. There are plenty of underwater viewing opportunities, but you can also ‘swim with the crocs’ in the Cage of Death, a unique crocodile swimming experience where you are lowered into the crocodile’s waters in a giant perspex enclosure.

Crocodylus Park

If you have a little more time, try a day out at Crocodylus Park, 15 minutes’ drive out of Darwin. With more than a thousand crocodiles here, and an emphasis on research, it’s an exciting place to fill up on facts and simply watch crocodiles in the extensive grounds. Take the Croc and Eco Cruise, join crocodile feeding tours and try holding a baby croc as well as a baby turtle, snake or lizard. There are enough other animals here for a full zoo safari experience – you can see kangaroos, water buffalo, iguanas and snakes here, too.

Adelaide River’s jumping crocodiles

'Jumping' crocodiles aren’t a special type of reptile – these wild creatures know how to jump out of the water when food is dangled overhead, lift themselves headfirst in a mind-blowing display of strength (and hunger). With an estimated four crocodiles per square kilometre on the Adelaide River, the only river around these parts where feeding is permitted, your chances of seeing several on a jumping crocodile cruise are excellent. Spectacular Jumping Crocodile Cruises run one-hour tours, an hour out of Darwin - it's a great stop off on the way to Kakadu National Park. Book a place on the smaller of the two boats to get a closer look at the action!

Kakadu National Park

The massive, world-renowned wilderness of Kakadu National Park is home to well over 10,000 crocodiles. Stay ‘croc safe’ by going crocodile-spotting with a guided cruise at either the Mary River wetlands and floodplain, home to the world’s highest concentration of saltwater crocodiles, or the beautiful Yellow Water billabong. The sunrise and sunset cruises through Yellow Waters are particularly breathtaking.

Territory Wildlife Park, Berry Springs

Despite being a fenced-in enclosure, viewing crocodiles at the Territory Wildlife Park feels like spotting them in the wild. You'll walk through a tunnel beneath an aquarium to view freshwater crocodiles swimming in their natural habitat, then head to the nearby lagoon to spot the park's resident 3.4 metre (11 foot) saltwater crocodile. Next door, you'll find picturesque Berry Springs Nature Park – a popular local swimming spot (crocodile free) in crystal clear water, complete with waterfall (open seasonally).

Museum and Art Gallery of the Northern Territory

For a glimpse of the complex relationship and history that locals share with their crocodile neighbours, visit the always interesting and beautifully curated Museum and Art Gallery of the Northern Territory. Amongst the exhibitions of some of the country’s best fine artists such as Brett Whiteley and Jeffrey Smart, as well as work by street artists and of course important Aboriginal artists, you’ll find the mummified body of 'Sweetheart', the city’s most famous crocodile. Measuring an impressive 5.1 metres (16 feet 7 inches) and weighing 780 kilograms (1720 pounds), Sweetheart is a fondly regarded local legend, carefully taxidermied and holding pride of place in the museum.



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