Before we set off to Australia we researched extensively about the area we were moving to. Darwin got some rough reviews on the internet! “The city’s too small”, “Nothing to do”, “Boring” were common complaints. These guys totally missed the point, and so have you if you’re heading to Darwin for a “city break”. The magic here happens as soon as you get out of the city…Darwin is best thought of as a gateway to a stunning world of nature, wilderness and adventure. And the people are so proud of it and are desperate to show it off. Which brings us to Les, a true blue territorian who’s only too happy to show us round his favourite spots.
Our best day so far was on a 1000 square km ranch with somewhere in the region of 10000 cattle (apparently a small station). Les (bushman, animal trainer and all round nice guy) wanted us to get to know the territory’s unique lifestyle and took us to meet his son, who works on the station. The place is MASSIVE! With billabongs, forest, flood plains, water holes and all manner of awesome, scary wildlife! It was an amazing day out!!!
We set off at around 4am to meet Les (who’d even lent us a car so we could get there!). Jumped in his battered old Hilux with a boat (tinnie), outboard motor and wolfhound (sophie) in the tray and a quad in the trailer for the 150km trip to the station. There were wallabies everywhere on the route, which was mainly off road and through some amazing bushland.
When we got there we got involved in a hunt, almost accidentally (there are a load of feral, wild pigs that destroy crops that the rangers have to control) This was unbelievable… It involved tearing round the swamp/forest/plains of the land on a massive quad bike and then generally looking away while the dogs and rangers “took care of” the pigs.
After a bite of lunch we drove the tinnie down to the billabong to find some barramundi. As soon as we got there we saw a huge croc – a saltie – the scary kind! He must’ve been at least 4m and he kept a close eye on us while we unloaded the boat. These were wild crocs, in their natural habitat, so stood on the muddy bank lifting the boat into the water was well out of my comfort zone.
And that was before we started floating around in a 12ft boat knowing there were crocs bigger than us in there! Even without live bait the barra (barramundi) were biting straight away.
We sailed up and down the billabong looking at crocs (they were everywhere, must’ve seen 50 easily) and reeling in a few fish. The billabong was a few miles long and absolutely stunning! A few barra had escaped after a bit of a fight, when I got the 1st one in the boat – my 1st ever catch!!! What a buzz – They’re a strong old fish and put up a good fight. So it was just Laura who still had her 1st fish to catch – and after a few weeds, and a few casts, she reeled in a massive barramundi! We ended up putting it back, but we’ll get one for tea next time!
After that we headed back to the Ranger’s house on the ranch for some snacks and a bit of a chill out before heading back to the city. All in all a great day – we’ve seen so many new things and done so many things that we might never get chance to do again! Thanks to the Ranger and Les for letting us look around The Station!
Our territory day out was amazing – I hugely recommend you fly out to Darwin for a week of adventure, and see some of our beautiful Northern Territory! And there’ll be a big mob of people willing to point you in the direction of the national parks, fishing spots or whatever else it is you’re looking for
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Tourist sites such as the gushing Wangi and Florence waterfalls are easily accessible and provide a refreshing place to swim and escape the hot Australian sun—just watch out for crocodiles before jumping in (I'm only half joking.
We were in a small boat on the Adelaide River, about a metre away from this 4 metre wild crocodile which is jumping out of the water to catch a piece of meat. There were loads of crocodiles in the river. No crocodiles here thankfully – it was cold at first but really lovely swimming in such a wonderful place.
This entry was posted in Crocodile Cage and tagged Crocodile Park, Darwin. In the heart of Darwin City. The only experience in the world that brings you face to face with Saltwater crocodiles, the new cage design has been updated to provide superior viewing with its seamless cylindrical design.
Darwin's beaches are off-limits for swimming due to saltwater crocodiles and jellyfish, but regeneration of a former industrial site has created a man-made lagoon and wave pool where the family could swim.