Kakadu NP & Darwin - Day 208

Trip Start Jan 31, 2008
Trip End Ongoing

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Flag of Australia  , Northern Territory,
Wednesday, September 17, 2008

The massive Kakadu national park is in the Arnheim wet-lands just south-west of Darwin, this region of Australia is known as "The top end" for obvious reasons. Kakadu has some of the most varied wildlife on the continent which includes big salt water crocs and over half the countries bird species.

Fist stop today was the Yellow river and it's many billabong's and lagoon's. Only 5 minutes after reaching the river bank I saw the head of a big croc rise out of the water, probably having a look around for breakfast. Just hope breakfast isn't going to be me! The river banks are lushly vegetated with grasses and trees full of birds singing their early morning songs. The park is so different to the other habits and landscapes I've seen in Australia so far. Most of the places I've driven through and visited are arid, barren desert landscapes . Kakadu is the complete opposite, very green, lush, extremely wet and teeming with life. Had a walk along the river and then headed into the bush to find a billabong in the thick mangrove forest.

To Nourlangie Rocks next, only a short drive from the Yellow river. The rocks are covered with ancient art, painted in half a dozen or so caves. The site is very sacred for the local Aborigines. Most of the animals and mythical characters depicted on the rocks were painted thousands of years ago and evidence of human habitation as been dated back 20,000 years in this area.

Visited a couple more billabong's on the road to Darwin this afternoon. An abundance of bird life in these waterholes, dozens of different species bathing and feeding in these little water havens.

Reached Darwin and had a break for a few hours and wandered around the city centre. I quite like Darwin, it's a very relaxed and friendly city.

Drove south back towards Katherine, planning to visit the Katherine gorges tomorrow in the Nitmiluk national Park before heading south to Alice Springs. Back to the desert for me tomorrow for long drive to the centre of the continent.
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