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The Top End

Map showing the Top End area of Australia

The perfect cosmopolitan and outback holiday experience with iconic national parks, ancient culture, unique wildlife and exceptional local dining experiences.

Do the Top End – exotic and tropical

There are four distinct regions in the Top End of the Territory that offer amazing holiday experiences. Soak up metropolitan Darwin by doing the markets at sunset, watching movies under the stars, cruising the harbour or taking a day trip out to Litchfield National Park; nature’s very own water theme park.

60% of Aussie travellers believe Kakadu is one of Australia’s best kept travel secrets. Brimming with native wildlife, it’s a utopia for any animal lover. And it’s just three hours’ drive from Darwin.

The outback meets the tropics in Katherine. Fish it, camp it, hike it, swim it, canoe it – your choices are endless. If you’re after a softer adventure, take in Nitmiluk Gorge aboard a dinner cruise and stay in five-star luxury.

Escape to one of Australia's last true wilderness areas. Arnhem Land is one of the Top End's most spectacular natural destinations, with beautiful scenery, rugged coastlines, remote islands, rivers teeming with fish, rainforest, towering escarpments and savannah woodland.

Do one region, or do them all.

Do Darwin

Darwin is a tropical city offering a blend of cosmopolitan and outback adventure and you can make it as action-packed or as laidback as you want it to be. There is no shortage of things to do in Darwin, from the famous Mindil Beach Markets and festivals, to eyeballing a croc in the Cage of Death.

Explore the history of Darwin and its Aboriginal culture, cruise on the harbour or just relax at the wave lagoon and soak up the outdoor lifestyle. When the sun goes down, Darwin comes alive with a multitude of entertainment venues including restaurants, theatres, nightclubs, and the casino.

Darwin sits on a harbour twice the size of Sydney Harbour and overlooks the Arafura Sea, offering an array of waterfront delights including superb dining, harbour cruising, fishing and amazing sunsets. There are also plenty of popular freshwater swimming spots nearby, such as Howard Springs, Berry Springs and Litchfield National Park - where you will find thundering waterfalls, crystal clear rock pools, native wildlife and bushwalking tracks.

Do nature

Darwin is surrounded by more than 20 national parks and reserves with some of the best swimming holes, waterfalls, wildlife spotting, bushwalking and hiking trails.

For the perfect day trip make sure you pack a picnic and head to Litchfield National Park. Plunge into crystal clear waterholes beneath the magnificent spring-fed waterfalls of Florence and Wangi, or soak in the gentle three-tiered cascade shaded by rainforest at Buley Rockhole. For a drier option, take the short walk through cypress pines and cycads to the Tolmer Falls viewing platform.

Cascading waterfalls, rugged escarpments, aboriginal rock art, giant crocodiles and exotic bird life. Kakadu National Park will change how you see the world. Experience the magic of this ancient land which is only a few hours from Darwin.

In Katherine you will find Nitmiluk National Park (Katherine Gorge), just three hours’ drive south from Darwin. You can explore up to 13 spectacular gorges carved from ancient sandstone and an array of waterfalls by paddling a canoe at your own pace, on a guided cultural cruise, or by a high-powered speedboat tour. Helicopter rides departing from the nearby visitor centre offer an excitement-charged way to see the magnificent gorge system from the air.

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#NTaustralia

If you're a big fan of waterfalls like us, a visit to #Litchfield National Park is definitely a must! Fed by twin falls and fringed by shady trees, Florence Falls ranks as one of the park's front runners, particularly as it's swimmable almost year round. Reaching the fall's glistening jade-green swimming hole is half the appeal 👉 the walk is short, easy and showcases the dramatic contrast between mighty sandstone escarpment and lush monsoon forest. An easy day trip from #Darwin, Litchfield may be a fraction of the size of Kakadu, but when it comes to swimming opportunities it packs a serious punch 👌💦 Cheers for tagging #NTaustralia, @cbowles14!  #SeeAustralia #TourismTopEnd

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When you're trying to sneak in a snack without your toddler noticing... 😂 Meet Annabelle and her joey, William, local residents at @TopDidj Cultural Experience near #Katherine. If you're visiting the region, located three hours south of #Darwin, make sure you stop in for their two hour aboriginal cultural experience. Visitors can interact with local artist Manuel Pamkal and learn about the significance of his painting style, traditional weapons and how he lived off the land. Not only can you meet Manuel, you can also say hello to these inquisitive little cuties - two of the Top Didj staff are also wildlife carers so there's always wallabies around! Cheers for tagging #NTaustralia, @j_fidock. #SeeAustralia #TourismTopEnd

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Finding the mysterious, almost undiscovered, Robin Falls feels like you’re unearthing a hidden gem for the first time. It’s the ultimate quiet place for a spot of secluded swimming surrounded by tropical woodlands 💦 This three-tiered waterfall can be found just outside the boundaries of Litchfield National Park, just over an hour south of #Darwin, near the township of Adelaide River. It’s a relatively short walk in from the car park following a crystal clear creek. Cheers for tagging #NTaustralia, @_aswewander! #SeeAustralia #TourismTopEnd

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Nature lovers will love what's on offer in close proximity to #Darwin, particularly the waterfall-laden #Litchfield National Park! @jackson.groves recently captured this awesome shot over Wangi Falls, one of the park's signature swimming hubs. With a stunning cliff face, an emerald-toned plunge pool and a cafe on-site, there's every reason to sit back and enjoy your surroundings. If you're looking to burn off lunch, the 1.6 kilometre return Wangi Falls walk takes you up to the escarpment where you'll have an amazing view of the stone country above the falls. Cheers for tagging #NTaustralia, Jackson! #SeeAustralia #TourismTopEnd

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If you're ever feeling old, a visit to this 40,000 year old gorge system will certainly help 😜 With ancient sheer cliffs shaped by water and adventure around every corner, Nitmiluk (#Katherine) Gorge is ripe for exploring by paddle. @NitmilukTours offer easy day and overnight tours combined with a relaxing boat cruise through the first gorge. The outback meets the tropics in the Katherine region, roughly 3.5 hours drive south of #Darwin. Cheers for tagging #NTaustralia, @amani_hawa!  #SeeAustralia #TourismTopEnd #NitmilukNT

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An outdoor shower with #sunset views... need we say more!? This is one overnight adventure you'll never forget! @abbeycholmes recently stopped by @mattwright1's new @TopEndSafariCamp set amongst the #Litchfield region's spectacular cathedral termite mounds and lush open floodplains. Collected from #Darwin, you'll get to stop by Berry Springs for a refreshing dip before heading to the camp and settling in to your deluxe lotus bell tent. Afternoon activities include an introduction to Matt's incredible 17 foot saltwater crocodile, Tripod, along with a helicopter flight over the surrounding landscape and a delicious BBQ dinner held on the Star Deck. You might not want to return to Darwin the next day! Cheers for tagging #NTaustralia, Abbey.

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We've found the ultimate day spa in #Litchfield National Park! Buley Rockhole is a cascading collection of emerald rock pools that seem to go on forever.... so you can skip those expensive spa treatments and take a seat while fast flowing whitewater gives you a shoulder massage! If you're visiting the park, only 90 minutes south of #Darwin, make sure you also check out the iconic termite mounds and other swimming holes such as Florence Falls and Wangi Falls. Cheers for tagging #NTaustralia, @danandmoore! #SeeAustralia #TourismTopEnd

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#Netflix and chill, NT style 🙌 This sweet set-up was created by @elisecook who recently road-tripped from #Darwin to #AliceSprings. Following the trail blazed in the 1860's by the first explorers to successfully cross @Australia from north to south, you'll be driving past striking natural wonders, historic outback pubs and towns brimming with culture and activity. On your travels you’ll hit the Territory’s star attractions, including World Heritage-listed Uluru and Kata Tjuta, spectacular Nitmiluk (Katherine) Gorge and the waterfalls and waterholes of Litchfield National Park. As far as road-trips go, they don't get much better than this one! Cheers for tagging #NTaustralia, Elise. #SeeAustralia

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Crystal clear thermal pools surrounded by paperbark and palm forest... in the middle of the outback?! The NT might have a reputation for being dry and sparse, but hidden amongst its landscapes are oases of emerald waterholes, warm springs and cascading falls. @gattizia recently stopped by #Mataranka Thermal Pool where the springs bubble up at 32 degrees to fill a semi-man made pool of perfectly turquoise water under a shady canopy of tropical woodlands 🙌 Located within Elsey National Park, you can find this magical spot an hour south of #Katherine and four hours south of #Darwin.  Cheers for tagging #NTaustralia, Fabiana! #SeeAustralia #TourismTopEnd

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