Top end

Trip Start Mar 07, 2006
Trip End Jun 30, 2006

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Flag of Australia  ,
Saturday, May 20, 2006

I've made it all the way to the Top End of Australia. Darwin is the closest city to Asia, the place that was bombed the most during World War II, and one of the hottest and most humid places in the entire country.

We cruised in here this afternoon after a three-day bus tour up from the Alice, which took us over 1500 kilometers straight up the Stuart Highway. The tour was with a group of the same people I went with to the Rock, as well as a bunch of new faces, so it was a lot of fun.

We started early on Thursday and covered a lot of the same ground as I'd done in reverse a few days earlier, on the way to Alice Springs. Along the way, we stopped at an Aboriginal Art museum where we all had a try at playing the Didgeridoo, at an old Telegraph Station, and at the Devil's Marbles yet again. We camped out overnight at Banka Banka Cattle Station, just north of Tennant Creek.

Yesterday, we had a long drive from Banka Banka up to Katherine, stopping along the way at the famous Daly Waters Pub, where people from all over the world have a tradition of leaving something behind - a photo, a sign, even underwear. We also stopped at a snake and reptile farm, and got to hold very large snakes (non-venomous, of course). The last stop of the day was at a spot called Mataranka, where we went swimming in thermal hot springs. There was bad flooding last month at Mataranka, and they had to rescue the pub's television in a canoe (the canoe is on display now). We camped out last night near Katherine.

This morning, we went on a boat cruise to see one of Australia's most magnificent spots: Katherine Gorge. There are actually thirteen gorges in total, though the cruise only went to the first three. We also took a walk up to a lookout over the first gorge. The scenery was stunning, though there were a lot of old people on the boat who kept getting in the way of our photos. This afternoon, we had a short three-hour drive into Darwin.

Tomorrow, I'm off on a two-day safari to Kakadu National Park. Hard to believe my time in Australia is almost up. Three days left.
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demiurge on

Hi Sari,

I was going to ask what the heck a 'Didgeridoo' was, and then I saw the picture.

So... what the heck is a Didgeridoo? :p

P.S. You really look like you're enjoying yourself. Keep it up! I wonder where you're going next after Australia.


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