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Escape To Kakadu
 
kakadu crocAs Australia’s largest national park, there is more to Kakadu than meets the eye. From the skies to the banks of the rivers, there is a vast diversity of scenic options, all uniquely fascinating and memorable. The park is situated just three hours drive from Darwin, and once you arrive you can be guaranteed to see the local crocs up close and personal, plus a plethora of wildlife and stunning landscapes which combine for the perfect adventure escape holiday. Spanning for almost twenty thousand kilometres, this land of swamps and unique terrain is Australia at its rawest. There is also great respect here for the ancient aboriginal traditions and cultures, which hold high prominence in this area. The wet (October - April) and dry (May - September) seasons are uniquely distinctive. In the dry season the roads are all open so you can access nearly all the main attractions of the area. There is not as much rain, which makes the camping grounds ideal. However, there are a lot of tourists during this time, and there is not as much water in the river systems, so make sure you check weather details while planning your trip.

If you visit during the wet season, there will be less tourists, lower prices and plenty of wildlife. Everywhere you look there is brilliant colour and scenery that will reward you in every aspect of your journey.

The South Alligator River runs through the heart of Kakadu, and is one of the most popular places to visit. The river is simply brimming with wildlife! At Cooinda, the Yellow Water Billabong Cruises are a popular attraction and allow you to experience the richness of the river system. You are also guaranteed to see a crocodile or two! The sunsets here are indescribable, with a viewing platform the favourite place to enjoy nature at its best.

Flora lovers will feel right at home too, with over a thousand species to choose from (if you had to count). The large water lilies are colourfully dotted on the banks of most river systems, and are quite spectacular with their common deep purple or pink flowers. Birdwatchers also flock to this region, most likely because they can find about one third of Australia’s birds here. The great thing about Kakadu is that you can spend an entire day here just awestruck at the abundance of wildlife that are present in just one place. Kakadu is also a haven for bushwalkers, with plenty of trails taking you to some fantastic viewpoints. There are plenty of historic aboriginal art sites that take you on a journey through time, wetlands brimming with birdlife and reptiles, and gorges that lead you to gorgeous waterfalls and places of relaxation. Twin Falls and Jim Jim Falls are the most accessible, and are definitely worth the hike.

Night time here is somewhat hard to describe. There are the ever present noises from the many bats, dingos, possums or nocturnal creatures that roam the undergrowth. This essentially brings you closer to nature than you perhaps ever thought possible, especially as you gaze at the canopy of stars and appreciate the safety of your home away from home.

Whatever time of the year you visit, plan to stay at least a few days so that you can capture the sheer wonder and beauty of Kakadu. There is something for everyone here and there is no doubt that would will be drawn back here to once again experience the adventure of a lifetime.

Christine Barton




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