Thursday, July 28, 2016

NT Part 1: Things to do in Darwin

As I said before, I do not recommend going to Darwin, but if you're in the area, I do recommend doing a day tour and go and explore NT. You can pretty much do everything in Darwin in 2 days, and that's pretty much what we did for our weekend in Darwin during preceptorship. Darwin doesn't have much to do, but there's still a lot of history involved, from WWII to cyclones.

north coast

Mindil Beach Markets

Mindil Beach

made it just in time for the sunset


It felt like the whole of Darwin plus surroundings were there. Usually you don't really see anyone apart from tourist on the main strip, but there were so many cars parked, it felt so weird seeing so many people here. Lots of locally produced market-style stuff, plus quite a large selection of food.

Museum and Art Gallery of the Northern Territory

giant paper dresses

real crocodile

It's free, so why not? Although no museums in Aus will be as good as those overseas, it still had a decent collection of Aboriginal arts, and other stuff like Cyclone Tracy history, which was quite interesting.

Parep Markets

Similar vendors to Mindil Beach Markets, just in a smaller area so it feels more crowded. It's kind of situated on/next to a carpark so it's more dangerous, with cars going past you whilst you're waiting in line.

Darwin Military Museum

By the way, super limited number of buses on Saturdays, and most don't run on Sundays. Ended up walking 1.5hrs here (but took a taxi back). It's $18, and there's in indoor section which explains things, and outdoor you get to see all the tanks/guns. I think we preferred the other museum, but this one is still pretty interesting, and learn a bit of Aussie history.

Cullen Bay

Man made marina where rich people live. There are restaurants here, but more pricey. We were here for the view.

Darwin Waterfront

The other tourist section, reminded me of Darling Harbour. They have restaurants kind of along the sea/wharf and a retail section (but not many shops). Other hotels here, wave pool (fake waves because only the East coast has decent waves on the beach), artificial beach and just a nice place to walk around. So many people come to the parks for picnics.

WWII Oil Tunnels


Walked past this and thought yolo, $8 to go inside a tunnel. It's just a tunnel they dug back in WWII to store oil tanks since they kept getting bombed above ground. The war ended before they even used these tunnels. 2 other tunnels are being used by the navy currently. 2 of them are opened, but only visited one of them since the other was apparently flooding on the day.

remains of the town hall after the cyclone

the main street

Feels more like a country town like Bateman's Bay or Port Stephens, rather than a CBD. No/minimal high rises, and 'high' is like 1/3 a Sydney building. You'll also notice almost everyone drives a 4WD. Most people here are tourist travelling through, or stopping in Darwin then travelling out.

Darwin Show

cute wooden carved owl

The week we were in Darwin just so happened to be the Darwin Show, where they also get a public holiday. It's like the Sydney Royal Easter Show but only goes for 3 days. It's also smaller, but has similar stuff. I think it's relatively big for Darwin, and people normally travel 2-3 hours to get here if they live in rural areas. It's a pretty big event for people living in this side of Aus. I used to go to the Easter show every year as a kid, back when show bags were $10, then 15 then 20ish. Now everything is at least $30. Went on a ride for $15, which is quite expensive, but yolo since I'm here, and haven't been on a ride in ages.

Accommodation feels like it's either Hilton or backpacker accommodation and plenty of hostels around. Not much 'in between' hotels. We stayed at a 2.5-3 star hotel, which was average but rooms were tiny, could just fit a small suitcase, other big suitcases you would need to stand it up and can't let it lie on the ground open. Basically there's not much choice in terms of hotels.

Taxis are limited, so make sure you book beforehand. They're just as expensive as Sydney imo (not that I take taxis in Syd). Just buses are so sparse here and most don't run on the weekends. They number them, and they are only 2 digits, where as here bus numbers are 3 digits plus the occasional letter. 

Darwin just mainly has things to see, and some walking around.

Goodbye Darwin

1 comment:

  1. Ahh your sunset pictures! Beautiful!

    Didn't realise you'd have to book taxis beforehand - great tip!