Darwin is the gateway to the ‘Top End’ and boasts the best lifestyle in Australia. A cultural melting pot, Darwin is a vibrant city influenced by many cultures around the world. It’s who we are and we love our uniqueness!
WE’RE A FRIENDLY MOB!
As locals we’re happy to share some of the best things to do in Darwin!
1Enjoy Spectacular sunsets
Watch the sun set into the Arafura Sea accompanied by your favourite beverage at one of the Darwin clubs and cafes.
Visit the Darwin Sailing Club, the Darwin Trailer Boat Club and the Nightcliff Foreshore for some of the best vantage points, and don’t forget to take your camera!
Street food, trinkets, sarongs, fortune tellers, aboriginal art and music – Markets are ‘the’ thing to do whilst you’re in the Top End.
- Parap Village Markets – Saturday mornings, year round
- Nightcliff Markets – Sunday mornings, year round
- Rapid Creek Markets – organically grown produce, year round
- Mindil Markets – Thursday & Sunday nights, late April – October. Famous for its stunning sunsets, Mindil Beach is the place to go to tick that off your bucket list. On market nights, thousands of people descend on the beach to watch the sun dip into the Arafura Sea. Don’t be surprised if the crowd cheers when the sun disappears!
Darwin has a lot of history and host a number of excellent museums and historical sites.
- Darwin Museum & Art Gallery: National Museum with a range of important historical exhibits, including the Cyclone Tracy display. Many will remember the devastation caused by tropical Cyclone Tracy annihilating the city on Christmas morning in 1974. The Museum is also has an art gallery, a Maritime museum and many items of cultural importance and wildlife exhibits.
- Darwin Military Museum: A powerful and interactive experience reflecting Bombing of Darwin. Contains war memorabilia for all over the Territory and other parts of Australia. A very moving experience.
- Australian Aviation Heritage Centre: An award winning display of Darwin’s aviation history with 19 types of aircraft on display including a B52 bomber, a B25 Mitchell bomber and other aircraft.
- The World War II Oil Storage Tunnels: A unique attraction located at the Darwin Wharf Precinct.
- Chinese Temple and Museums: Stone Lions and crafted in China guard the entrance in Litchfield Street. The Temple was originally used for social gatherings, the forerunner of Chung Wah Society.
- Fannie Bay Gaol: Built in 1883, the gaol demonstrates the hardships of penal life in early settlement days with small cells and a set of gallows.
Just 2 kilometers from the city, the George Brown Botanic Gardens are renowned for their collection of northern Australian and tropical plants.
One of the few botanic gardens in the world with marine and estuarine plants growing naturally. Beautiful shady trees, tropical bromeliads, orchids and other exotic flora .. our gardens are a great place to explore.
Eva’s cafe is a great place to stop for brunch, lunch or just a coffee.
5The Waterfront Precinct
Lounge on the grassy lawns under a shady palm tree, visit the Wave Pool, swim in the safety of the sandy beach (crocodile free) or Tai Chi with the locals on a Saturday morning … enjoy this relaxation space.
A great selection of local pubs, cafes and quality restaurants to enjoy nearby.
6The Deckchair Cinema
One of Darwin’s great experiences! A unique outdoor cinema, the Deckchair Cinema is a stunning tropical setting overlooking Darwin Harbour with old fashioned deckchairs and cushions for comfort.
Screenings range from family favourites, Australian and foreign films. Hot meals and a licensed bar is available.
It’s where the possums come out to play and scamper up the big screen silhouetted against the sun setting over the ocean!
A trip back along memory lane for many of us! An experience not to be missed!
A number of evening cruises run from Darwin wharf area that take in the sunset from an ocean vantage point. City lights in the background offer a beautiful backdrop of Darwin harbour with the option of wine and canape’s or a full dining experience depending on your cruise choice.
8Where to eat
With so many great restaurants in Darwin, the dining choice is often difficult. Whatever you may be looking for, it will be here and it will be good!
My favourites are: Thailicious, Little Miss Korea, Yots Greek Taverna, Hanuman’s, The Sailing Club, Cornucopia at the Museum or Tandoori Vibes for Indian food. For something a little more casual why not grab a famous Mitchelli’s pizza or pop into the Cav Hotel for a great steak. Don’t forget to try the restaurants and eateries at Stokes Hill Wharf.
Search TripAdvisor, read the reviews or simply choose one of my favourites for a guaranteed good night.
9How to get here?
Getting here is easy! Flights daily from all capital cities of Australia, a short flight daily from Cairns and a flight from Alice Springs twice a day.
A road trip to the Northern Territory has the added advantage of seeing the sights along the way and getting the feel of our remoteness.
Road travel is a great way to enjoy the rich colours of the Territory and experience the extraordinary scenery. The roads are great in the Territory, lots of wide open spaces but do be careful of our wildlife – they have a habit of wandering onto the roads and many a tale of woe is told when a kangaroo, buffalo, emu or hawk comes to grief with a moving vehicle.
One of the most unique travel options is to ‘take the Ghan‘. One of the world’s famous rail journey, the Ghan travels from Adelaide – Darwin stopping in Alice Springs on the way.
“The Ghan has captivated travellers since its inaugural journey in 1929 and continues to be a top choice for travellers seeking authentic Australian adventure with all the comforts and luxury that come with travelling by rail.” (Great Southern Rail)
We may seem to be a long way from everywhere, but the lifestyle is what we love most about the Top End.
Come visit and enjoy!
10Where to stay
Darwin has great accommodation choices ranging from camp sites, backpacker accommodation through to top rated hotels. Air BnB, Booking.com, Trip Advisor and Wotif provide accommodation options in both locality and price.
Darwin, as the capital city of the Northern Territory is a great place to start your Territory adventure!
Considered one of ‘the last frontier’s’, with wild emus, crocodiles, National Parks that have world heritage listing, waterfalls that go forever and culturally significant aboriginal paintings. Litchfield Park, Arnhem Land, Kakadu and the Tiwi Islands are world famous, so be sure to visit and experience them all!
The Darwin experience is enhanced by relaxing and enjoying the slow pace of the Territory. Don’t be in a hurry, relax and unwind.
If there is anything else you would like to know about our beautiful city, just ask!