Palms City Resort, winner of the Best Standard Accommodation in the NT 2015, 2016 and 2017 Brolga Awards, provides a tropical paradise in the vibrant city of Darwin. Thanks to its 2015 refurbishment, the resort provides modern, comfortable rooms with a splash of tropical colour and airiness that oozes relaxation. Throughout the establishment the tropical ambience envelops its guests thanks to lush gardens, cute bungalows and light colours with wooden accents. It also has a 24-hour reception desk, breakfast café, luggage storage, WiFi and a lagoon-style pool to relax in at the end of a day exploring the city.
Where to eat:
You’ll find yourself dining at the iconic Hotel Darwin which dates back to 1940 and has been a long-running watering-hole for the city’s locals. This is the place to try a variety of local produce including fresh barramundi, thick rump steak, mouth-watering pizzas and even kangaroo pie.
Another historic Darwin food lovers-destination is the Stokes Hill Wharf which is conveniently located right next to the Royal Flying Doctor Service Darwin Tourist Facility. The wharf provides a range of alfresco dining within both the Port and Starboard Arcades alongside casual restaurant dining. All eateries specialise in fresh seafood and steak which can be enjoyed while taking in the panoramic ocean views or the famed Darwin sunsets.
What to do:
On your day long Nitmiluk Gorge (formerly Katherine Gorge) and Leliyn Falls sightseeing tour you’ll be guided through the famous gorge within the expansive Nitmiluk National Park. Rugged landscapes, thundering waterfalls and unlimited flora and fauna will encompass your senses as you explore the natural haven. Your day will continue with a trip along the longest highway in Australia, the Stuart Highway, before a stop at the Adelaide River War Cemetery which is dedicated to those who lost their lives in the north of Australia during WWII. From here you’ll enter the rugged landscape of the National Park before visiting Leliyn Falls (also known as Edith Falls). Throughout Nitmiluk you’ll see plenty of Aboriginal rock art depicting images steeped in the deep spiritual culture of the traditional owners of the land, the Jawoyn people. It’s then on to a buffet lunch before browsing the Visitor Centre. A relaxing two-hour cruise through the sandstone walls of Nitmiluk Gorge will present you with plenty of opportunities to spot local wildlife including freshwater crocodiles, vibrant birdlife and native plants.
Your Kakadu National Park and East Alligator sightseeing tour will see your exploring the largest National Park in Australia! With one of the most diverse landscapes you’ll find yourself enthralled by the varying flora and fauna found in the air, on the land and in the water. From Darwin you’ll travel through the pristine wetland regions to Kakadu before you arrive at the Warradjan Cultural Centre. Here you’ll be introduced to the way of life of the Bininj people who are the traditional owners of the land. It’s then on to an exciting cruise along the Yellow Water Billabong which is home to thousands of crocodiles just waiting to be spotted along with over 60 species of colourful birdlife including brolgas and kingfishers. That night you will stay at the luxurious Mercure Kakadu Crocodile Hotel where you can relax after a day full of exciting exploration.
You’ll start day two by exploring the World Heritage area of Ubirr where Aboriginal rock art galleries believed to be over 20,000 years old will take your breath away. Climb your way to the lookout for stunning views over the impressive landscape which includes the floodplains, lush woodlands and dark ribbons of forest that make up the Nadab wetlands. It’s then on to a Guluyambi Cultural Cruise along East Alligator River where an Aboriginal guide will provide insights into the local culture and mythology as well as the rivers food chain and some bush survival skills. With special permission from the local people, you are even allowed to go ashore in Arnhem Land. Next, it’s on to a visit of the Bowali Visitor Centre for a wealth of information on the Park’s ecology and Aboriginal culture before finally returning to Darwin.
The Tiwi Islands Aboriginal Cultural Tour is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to visit a modern-day Aboriginal community. It will provide you with an insight into the Tiwi people’s rich culture and lifestyle as you spend time with some Tiwi Ladies while they work on their weaving and painting. Visit the Tiwi Museum with its interesting displays of traditional art and depictions of the Tiwi ‘dreamtime’ stories, and Early Mission Precinct and its unique Tiwi-style Catholic Church. Next visit the successful Arts & Crafts Centres and see where the artists work. You also can purchase Tiwi arts and crafts and screen-printed fabric at Island prices, then learn some of the complex rituals associated with the Pukamani (burial ceremony). The tour will reveal scenes seldom seen by many outsiders and will leave you with a lifetime memory. Many cities are blessed with island destinations close by, but only Darwin has the Tiwi Islands.
Sightseeing in the NT’s capital city is easy with the Hop on Hop off Bus which will allow you to customise your Darwin experience while also learning interesting facts via the entertaining audio commentary provided on the bus. The popular drop-off spots include the beautiful George Brown Darwin Botanic Gardens, Crocosaurus Cove, Stokes Hill Wharf and the Museum and Art Gallery of the Northern Territory.
If you are visiting Darwin between 1 November 2019 and April 2020 you will have the pleasure of experiencing ‘Tropical Light’- an outdoor exhibition featuring 8 site specific illuminated sculptures activating Darwin’s city parks. This wondrous collection of new and existing work has been created by world renowned artist Bruce Munro, which reflect the artist’s experiences of visiting Australia and the Northern Territory. The exhibition is connected by a centralised self-guided path to wander along with each piece intended to inspire interest during the day and hold special significance when illuminated at night. ‘Tropical Light’ is a free event that opens November 1st 2019 and runs until 30th April 2020 and can be viewed at your leisure with the best viewing time onwards from 7pm till 10pm daily. ‘Tropical Light’ is set to be one of the largest trails of art in the Northern Territory with the exhibition path also having stunning local works from Darwin artists to discover.
Location & how to get there
Darwin International Airport (darwinairport.com.au) is serviced by many Domestic and Regional airline carriers including Qantas, Virgin Australia, Jetstar and Air North. Flights mainly operate out of Australia’s capital cities and generally take between 3 – 4 hours.
The airport is about a 15-minute drive from the centre of town. The Darwin Airport Shuttle meets all domestic and international flights and departs from the front of the terminal. Car hire is available from the counters close to the baggage carousels. There are also plenty of taxis available at the airport cab rank and private transfers can be pre-booked.
Darwin can also be reached by The Ghan, from Adelaide or Alice Springs, with trains arriving weekly on Tuesdays. While the rail station is situated a short drive from the city centre, free transfers are offered to all passengers.
For those driving there are a number of entry ways to access Darwin. Most roads are sealed however some are for the more adventurous 4 wheel drivers. If you are coming from Queensland the best route to take is the Overlander’s Way / Barkly Highway from Mt Isa. If you are leaving from Cairns you can take the Savannah Way which is a rugged, unsealed road which crosses the top of Australia from Cairns to Broome. You can also use the Savannah Way as an access from Western Australia. Other roads leading from WA to Darwin include the Tanami Road that runs across the Tanami Desert and to the north the Butine Highway. The drive from South Australia is especially scenic as you follow the Explorer’s Way through Coober Pedy and past the major centres of Alice Springs, Tennant Creek and Katherine before arriving in Darwin.
On sale until 30 June 2019. For travel until 31 October 2019. Seasonal surcharges apply for travel between 1 May – 30 June & 1 July – 30 September 2019. Blackout dates apply (6 May, 11 June, 12-16 June, 26 July & 5 August 2019). Some inclusions may be closed over public holidays. Prices and inclusions are correct as of 2 May 2019 and may be subject to change due to availability, surcharges, fees or taxes without notice. Offer may be withdrawn at any time without notice. Prices are based on 2 adults. Please contact us on 1800 854 897 or firstname.lastname@example.org to enquire. Airfares and transfers are additional unless otherwise specified. For full terms and conditions and details on our refund policy, view our booking conditions. E&OE.