Northern Territory - Darwin
The Northern Territory has one of the biggest draws to Australia, Ayers Rock.
The Red Centre is fast becoming an overnight stop for most visitors.
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The Northern Territory (NT) has the 3rd largest landmass in
Australia. As the name suggests, it is classed as a “Territory” rather
than a state. Borders South Australia to the south, Western Australia to
the west and Queensland to the east. Despite its size and a land-mass of
520,902 sq mls (1.349,429 sq km), the Northern Territory remains very
sparsely populated with under 220,000 people.
The capital is
Darwin and other main towns and cities are Alice Springs, Tennant Creek
and Katherine. The Northern Territory is home to the famous natural rock
formation, Uluru (Ayers Rock) which is sacred to Aboriginal people.
The northern part of the region has a tropical climate and 2 seasons -
wet and dry. The central area (southern part of the territory) is mainly
desert and has the associated climate, namely, arid and dry.
Tourism is a major industry due to the varied choice of diverse scenery,
wildlife and aboriginal culture.
We recommend that you book early to avoid disappointment.
Stay in Alice Springs and Darwin to experience the culture and contrasts of the Northern Territory and venture further afield to Kakadu National Park, Katherine Gorge and Kings Canyon.
Darwin - Northern
Cyclone Tracy, which devastated Darwin in
1974, saw to it that the town is far more modern looking than its
isolated situation might suggest. Stretching around 4.8km (3 miles)
north to south, the compact city centre consists of a series of wide
main roads, paralleling the sea-facing Esplanade, after which the city
straggles north along the Mindil and Fannie Bay beaches as far as East
Point Nature Reserve.
Shops and restaurants are concentrated
along the south end of the 3 main streets, and many of the best hotels
straddle the Esplanade. Another area of interest is Darwin Harbour, at
the south east end of town overlooking Frances Bay, which has been
redeveloped as the Wharf Precinct, offering a mix of attractions, bars
and restaurants. Overall, the city has a well-spaced, flat feel which is
just as well if you're to move around comfortably in the intense heat of
the dry season.
It is in the Northern Territory, shaded by dense tropical vegetation,
that you will find the modern city of Darwin, set on a magnificent
harbour, while down 'the track', towns like Katherine and Tennant Creek
have a character and charm unique to the outback.
A two hour drive from Darwin is all it takes to reach untamed Kakadu
National Park bordering Arnhemland, a region of dense rainforest,
soaring escarpments and ever present wildlife. Litchfield National Park,
located close to Darwin, offers magnificent waterfalls, birdwatching and
bushwalking through untouched wilderness.
During the dry season, May to October, the weather is ideal for touring
and camping, with clear blue skies and temperatures ranging from
21-31'C. November to April is known as the wet season bringing monsoon
weather and humidity, but it doesn't rain all the time, and at this time
of year the landscape comes to life, waterfalls thunder and the wetlands
are alive with wildlife.
Ayers Rock - Northern Territory
purpose-built, Ayers Rock Resort (also known as Yulara) measures about
2.4km (1.5 miles) from north to south and has all the facilities of a
small town as well as accommodation of all standards, a visitor centre
and a tourist office.
Designed to blend in with the surrounding
desert, the resort is primarily red and ochre in colour and much thought
has gone into conservation in an area which receives almost too many
visitors. Construction and operations follow strict environmental
procedures to minimise the impact of tourism on the fragile natural
environment. Shade from the intense heat is provided by huge white
Uluru, the main attraction, is sacred to the local
Aborigines who ask that people do not climb it, although this is not
enshrined in law.
Known to the Aboriginals as Uluru, Ayers Rock is the world's largest
monolith. Nestled amongst red sand dunes Ayers Rock Resort is
located 6kms from Ayers Rock Airport and 20kms from 'The Rock' itself.
The resort comprises a selection of hotels with numerous restaurants,
bars, a central shopping square, visitors centre and amphitheatre.
Steeped in mystery and Aboriginal folklore, Ayers Rock (or Uluru) rises sheer from a flat plain that stretches as far as the eye can see. To watch its colour change at sunset or sunrise is a moving and memorable experience.
Ayers Rock is one of Australia's most popular attractions and is a 'must' on any visit to Australia. We recommend you spend a minimum of two nights here to fully experience all the sights and attractions on offer.
Alice Springs - Northern Territory
Alice feels Spring is very much the real deal
when it comes to Australian outback towns, being surrounded by sandstone
ridges and endless bush with ancient Aboriginal rock carvings, wallabies
and desert. The best views are from Anzac Hill.
The town itself
comprises featureless low-rise buildings, a small population (approx.
20,000), pedestrianised shopping mall, casino and an 18-hole golf course
across the river from the centre.
Set in the sunbaked south of the Northern Territory is the incredibly
diverse and timeless region called The Red Centre with the 'last chance'
town of Alice Springs, a veritable oasis in the desert, with a character
unique to the outback.
Reminders of Alice Springs robust founders can be found at the original
Telegraph Station, Adelaide House, the Aviation Museum and the Royal
Flying Doctor Service. Here's your chance to ride a camel along
the Todd River or float aloft at sunrise in a hot air balloon over the
rugged MacDonnell Ranges. This is the main staging post for Uluru
National Park, home to Ayers Rock and the Olgas, 475kms south west of
Relaxed and informal, Alice Springs has more to offer than you think. It is also the ideal starting point for visits to Ayers Rock, Kings Canyon and the wild, untamed outback.