The sunbaked desert plains, vast gorges, and crocodile-filled billabongs of the Northern Territory offer a spectacular backdrop for an outdoor adventure, and there are an impressive 16 national parks to explore throughout the state. Here are five of the best that you can visit on a day trip.
Darwin Cruise Port
Make your way into Darwin downtown to explore the myriad multicultural markets that call this tropical city home—the Mindii Beach Sunet, Parap Village, and Palmerston markets are popular options, while indigenous art galleries also abound. Alternatively, get to grips with the city’s tumultuous history on a guided walking tour or venture further afield during a shore excursion to Litchfield Park, where you’ll find waterfalls, natural plunge pools, and hiking trails. Don’t skip Crocosaurus Cove, Crocodylus Park, or a jumping crocodile cruise either.
Things to Know Before You Go
- Darwin Cruise Port’s Fort Hill Wharf terminal is air-conditioned and has some covered walkways. Other amenities are limited.
- The nearby Stokes Hill Wharf offers restaurants, public restrooms, and ATMs.
- Darwin is a tropical city with hot and humid weather in summer (December to February), but comfortable winters (June to August).
- November to April is the rainy season in Darwin—pack light layers and waterproof clothing.
- Darwin offers markets, history, and proximity to natural attractions such as Litchfield Park.
- Hop-on hop-off buses pass by Darwin Cruise Port and are a good time-saving option for first-time visitors.
How to Get to Darwin From the Darwin Cruise Port
Located 1.2 miles (2 kilometers) from downtown Darwin and just over half a mile (1 kilometer) from the Esplanade, it’s possible to walk to town in around 15 minutes. You’ll always find taxis waiting by the pier, and some cruise lines also operate complimentary shuttle buses into the city. Darwin International Airport is located 8 miles (13 kilometers) northeast of the city center.
The air-conditioned Fort Hill Wharf is located just a short walk from the city center’s shopping districts, where you’ll find several ATMs and banks where you can exchange currency. Currency here is the Australian dollar and the official language is English.