Darwin is the capital of Australia’s Northern Territory. Situated on the most northern tip of the country (as known as the Top End), Darwin is as close to Singapore and Manilla as it is to Sydney and Melbourne. Darwin’s remote location is one of its main draws and why
Aussies and international travellers alike book a trip to the city. Compared to other parts of Australia, Darwin and the Northern Territory offer a slower pace of life. Culture vultures can learn about Aboriginal history in the city’s museums and art galleries. Outdoor lovers have plenty to like as well. Foodies can explore the vibrant restaurant scene in Darwin which benefits from migration and immigration. The city’s close location to Asia makes it a popular destination for Asian expats.
How to get in and out of Dawin
You can fly straight to Darwin thanks to its international airport. This makes reaching the city far easier than over land. Darwin is over 3,900 kilometres away from Sydney and it takes 42 hours to drive between the locations. While it can be a beautiful overland trip, it can be time consuming and difficult.
Darwin International Airport –
Quantas Airlines make regular flights to Darwin from Sydney and Melbourne. If you are flying into one of the two major hubs from outside of
Australia, you can get a connecting domestic flight to the Top End. Flights from Sydney and Melbourne take around three to four hours. Flights from Perth, Brisbane, and Adelaide also arrive at Darwin International.
Ghan Railway –
The Ghan is one of the greatest passenger train journeys in the world. The railway line connects Alice Springs, Adelaide and Darwin. The train line covers nearly 3,000 kilometres and takes about 54 hours to complete. It is worth the journey for the experience alone.
Overlander’s Way/Barkly Highway
– Driving to Darwin from another Australian major city is not for the faint hearted. The best way to reach the city is by the Barkly Highway, a.k.a. the Overlander’s Way. Depending on where you begin your journey, there are different entry points to Darwin.
– Greyhound Australia runs bus services from Adelaide to Darwin. This allows you to reach the remote city without doing the driving. Prices are not cheap, however. The bus has a lot of distance to cover on the journey.
How to get around Darwin
Darwin is Australia’s least populated capital city. Its remote location ensures that Aussies do not travel or relocate to the city often – unless they are already from the Northern Territory. Darwin has a population of 140,000 people. Although it isn’t large
by the standards of other Aussie capitals, Darwin is still is to navigate thanks to public transport.
Car hire –
Car hire is likely the best option for getting around Darwin. Renting a car allows you freedom of movement and the ability to reach areas outside of the city. You can also explore other areas of the Northern Territory.
Bike hire offers you the chance to explore Darwin at your own pace and get some exercise while doing it. You can hire a bike from one of the cycling stations around town seven days a week, 365 days a year.
Darwin may be small but it offers a network of buses that connect various parts of the city. You can reach various points, but you will need a Tap and Ride Card before boarding the city’s buses.
Various rideshare and taxi companies operate in Darwin. Rideshare companies include Ola and Uber.
What to do in Darwin
Darwin is a tropical travel locale and it feels far different than other parts of Australia. Many Aussies travel north to the tropical capital during winter to get away from the chill of southern Australia. Meanwhile, international travellers descend on Darwin for its unique atmosphere and vibrant culture.
The weather in Darwin is warm all year-round and a trip to the beach can be made even in the middle of winter. Mindil and Vestey Beaches are the most popular and busiest in Darwin.
The Northern Territory has a rich history and much of its past is on display at the Museum Art Gallery of the Northern Territory (MAGNT). Works range from pre-historic indigenous through European settlement.
If you need a bit of rest and relaxation after making the exhaustive trip to Darwin, then don’t miss the chance to soak your body in the Douglas Hot Springs. The springs are in lush woodlands making it as beautiful to view as it is relaxing.
During Darwin’s dry season, don’t miss the chance to explore the Sunset Markets. The markets resemble those you would find in Asia and offer stalls with a variety of foods from around the globe. Around 300 local businesses typically participate in the markets, making it a great way to contribute to Darwin’s regional economy.
Darwin has a tropical climate making it a gorgeous place to go throughout the year. Rather than thinking about Darwin’s weather in terms of summer, autumn, spring, winter; it is better think about it as the dry and wet season.
The wet season begins in November and extends into April. Darwin experiences monsoon rains and storms during the wet season. The city’s average temperatures range between 24.7°C and 32°C. Although January is considered absolutely gorgeous in Darwin, it is the wettest month of the year.
From May to October, Darwin experiences its dry season. Temperatures are not too different than during the wet season, but vary slightly between 21.6°C and 31.8°C. Due to being slightly cooler and the weather dry, it is a great time to venture out into the wilderness for Aussie adventures.
Saltwater crocodiles have been protected species since 1971. It is believed there are 200,000 saltwater crocodiles in the Nothern Territory. Individuals in and around Darwin are in no danger of being attacked by a crocodile as local rangers routinely trap and return them to the wild before posing a threat to people.