Read about the city

Darwin is the capital of the Australian Northern Territory, and it is also the largest city in the territory. Darwin's close distance to Southeast Asia makes the city an easy gateway to all of Australia.

Darwin is located in the tropics, making the climate warm and with seasonal fluctuations between dry and humid weather. The location naturally provides Darwin with all the prerequisites for tourism and access to a lush nature.

In Darwin there are a number of exciting activities and sights. Nature is part of many of the experiences, but here are also interesting museums, colonial-style buildings, markets and more from the modern Australian society.

Darwin is the northern starting point for Stuart Highway and The Ghan Railroad to the south through Alice Springs to Adelaide. They are both unique experiences, and not far from Darwin there are national parks, etc. Everything for a memorable trip to tropical north Australia.

Other attractions
  • Old Court House: Darwin's former court house and police station was built in 1884. It was the first of its kind in the Northern Territory. The fine building has over time housed various administration; for example, the Australian Navy had its seat here in 1942.
  • Parliament House: Parliament House is the seat of Northern Territory Parliament. It is located in the complex of public administration buildings around Liberty Square and State Square.
  • Chinese Chung Wah Temple: In the 19th century Darwin, many Chinese came to the area and the city's original Chinese temple was constructed on the Esplanade next to the Old Court House.
  • Museum and Art Gallery of the Northern Territory: Here you can get a good insight into Darwin and the Northern Territory. The collection at Northern Territory's leading museum and art gallery shows the region's natural, cultural and art history.
  • East Point Military Museum: At the East Point Military Museum, you can see Darwin's war history, not least the story of the Japanese bombings during World War II.
History overview

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    European time on the Australian north coast started with the Dutch sailing here in the 1600s. They drew the first European maps and named some areas, for example Arnhem Land east of Darwin.

    In 1839, the English ship HMS Beagle sailed to positions at present Darwin, and led by John Wickham they went ashore and named the port after scientist Charles Darwin, who had sailed on HMS Beagle on a previous expedition.

    However, it was not until 1869 that an actual settlement became a reality. 135 people settled here and they called the place Palmerston. Already the following year, telegraph poles began to be erected, which would go from Post Augusta on the south coast via Darwin to the rest of the world, making the city strategically important.

    In the 1880s, during the construction of the telegraph lines, gold was found at Pine Creek, which caused the population to rise. After some decades of progress, the town was officially called Darwin, Palmerston is today one of the city's suburbs, built in the 1980s.

    On February 19, 1942, Japanese aircraft attacked Darwin. Several hundred people were killed and many buildings destroyed. The attack was the first of a long series in 1942-1943.

    The next major disaster hit Darwin on December 25, 1974, when cyclone Tracy ravaged the city, killing 71 people and crushing 70% of the buildings.

    Despite the destruction by Tracy and other cyclones over time, Darwin has been rebuilt over and over, and now with greater certainty built with protection against natural disasters. Darwin, with its 110,000 inhabitants, is the largest city on the Australian north coast.
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Legislative Assembly of the Northern Territory, Mitchell Street, Darwin City Northern Territory, Australien

Top attractions
  • Lyons Cottage, BAT House: Lyons Cottage is a fine example of early architecture in Darwin, and it is also the only remaining colonial-style bungalow in the city. The house was built as a residence for employees of the British Australia Telegraph, and it is also known as the BAT House.
  • Government House: The Government House was built in 1870-1871 as a government building in Darwin, and it is one of the buildings that have been survived all the cyclones that have hit the town during the 20th century.
  • Darwin Wharf: In Darwin's modern marina there is a lovely atmosphere where you can experience some beautiful sunsets. In the area there is also numerous activities to enjoy.
  • Darwin Botanic Garden: With its location in the tropics, Darwin's botanical garden is an orgy of flowers and plants. Originally, the site was a swampy eucalyptus grove, but since its founding in 1886 varied plants have been cultivated.
  • Fannie Bay Gaol: The Fannie Bay Gaol Prison is one of the most significant cultural historic buildings preserved in the Northern Territory. The prison was in use from 1883 to 1979, and today it is a museum.
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  • Casuarina Square , 247 Trower Road, Casuarina,
  • Mitchell Center , Mitchell Street
  • The Galleria , Smith Street Mall
  • Shopping streets: Smith Street Mall, Mindil Beach Sunset Markets, Mitchell Street
With kids
  • Bathing: Wave Lagoon, Waterfront Precinct
  • Crocodiles and reptiles: Crocosaurus Cove, 58 Mitchell Street,
  • Crocodiles: Crocodylus Park, 815 McMillans Road, Barrimah,
  • Pearls and Pearl Fishing: Australian Pearling Exhibition, Stokes Hill Road
  • Marine: Indo Pacific Marine, 29 Stokes Hill Road, Wharf Precinct
  • Outdoor Cinema: Deckchair Cinema, Jervois Road,
  • Fish: Aquascene, 28 Doctors Gully Road,
  • Botanical Gardens: Darwin Botanic Gardens, 200 Gardens Road,
  • Animal & Nature Park: Territory Wildlife Park, Cox Peninsular Road, Berry Springs,
Practical info