Best known as Australia’s Outback, the Northern Territory is home to Australia’s icon Uluru (Ayers Rock), 52 national parks, reserves and conservation areas, a variety of Indigenous experiences, outback events, and quintessential Australian experiences. There is so much to explore in this vast land, three times the size of California, whether you want to swim under a waterfall or ride a camel through the desert. Let’s take a journey from north to south and discover the best of the Northern Territory!
Start your journey Downunder in the Northern Territory’s tropical capital, Darwin. Here you’ll find a fusion of Australian, Asian, and Western cultures reflected in dining experiences, a bustling nightlife and outdoor markets. Darwin’s popular Mindil Beach Sunset Market allows you to visit stalls ranging from global cuisines to didgeridoos to your name on rice. During your time in the city, visit the Darwin Military Museum to learn about the Bombing of Darwin during WWII or take the time to visit Crocosaurus Cove where you can come face to face with Australia’s most infamous resident, the saltwater crocodile. For avid anglers, Darwin is a world-class fishing destination with Barramundi being the highlight of any Aussie fishing trip. Activities are endless in Darwin as the city serves as the gateway to the Tiwi Islands and Litchfield National Park.
From Darwin, explore more of the Top End by traveling east to nearby World Heritage listed Kakadu National Park and Arnhem Land to discover 50,000 Aboriginal year old rock art. With over 12,000 miles of vast floodplains, billabongs and pristine waterfalls, Kakadu boasts stunning views and biodiversity. To experience the natural beauty firsthand you will want to visit Ubirr, accessible by a gentle hike, to experience dramatic 360-degree views. Similarly, Arnhem Land, home to sacred site Mt Borradaile, will transport you to wild coastlines, deserted islands and savannah woodland.
If you are looking for Crocodile Dundee type adventure, look no further than Katherine and its 13 gorges just waiting to be explored. The best ways to see the gorge is by canoe or cruise. These exciting waterways offer views of the gorge walls, and beaches perfect for picnics where you can relax in the sun. Accommodation ranges from camping to a luxury lodge, but all offer a unique Top End feel.
After exploring the best of the Top End, head down to the heart of the outback in the Red Centre. Rather than driving or flying, take the world famous Ghan train and traverse the rugged outback landscape by rail. This all-inclusive journey includes fantastic accommodation, meals, off train tours and more. You can choose to take it from Darwin to Alice Springs or take the full journey through to Adelaide in South Australia.
Upon arriving in Alice Springs, you’ll have a chance to discover this famous outback pioneering town. Here you will encounter ancient mountain ranges, watering holes, and a thriving town with a rich cultural and pioneering heritage. Visit one of the many art galleries, such as the Araluen Arts Centre or Papunya Tula or head to the Reptile Centre or Desert Park to get to know some unique outback critters. Make sure you take the time to do a town tour and visit the Royal Flying Doctor Service and the School of the Air to learn more about life in the remote parts of the outback.
While the Territory is full of iconic sights, none are more popular than Uluru (Ayers Rock). Take in the sights of Uluru-Kata Tju¬ta National Park with tours led by the traditional landowners, the Anangu people or experience one of the many activities around Ayers Rock Resort. Whether you want to ride a Harley Davidson, take a helicopter flight or ride a camel, there are many ways to enjoy this quintessential Australian destination. One of the must do activities around Uluru is the Sounds of Silence dinner. Dine under billions of stars in the heart of the outback and enjoy cuisine of kangaroo, crocodile, bush vegetables and Australian wine. Want to make the evening even more special? Arrive on camelback!
Whether your journey to Australia’s Outback starts in the tropical Top End or the arid Red Centre, everything about the Northern Territory reinforces the idea that you haven’t been Downunder till you've been Outback!
For a limited time, Qantas Airways is making it even easier to fly from the US to Australia’s Outback! Book your trip to the Outback today!