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10 Things To Do In The Northern Territory On My Bucket List!

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The Northern Territory of Australia, one of the eight states in Australia and also known as the NT is an incredible part of the country! Although this area is VERY empty in places, it’s also FULL of wildlife, national parks, beaches and dramatic (very red!) scenery.

During my 2-year working holiday visa in Australia, I spent 1-month living and working in Darwin which is the capital of Australia’s Northern Territory, and I returned the following year to Alice Springs to do a 3 day Red Centre Tour.

I loved being up in Darwin as I had no preconceptions of Darwin city or the surrounding area before arriving in Australia and visiting the Red Centre and Uluru was of course a total dream come true and bucket list tick!

Things to do in Northern Territory, Uluru
Did you know that Uluru is in the Northern Territories state of Australia!?

Being on a backpacker wage and a backpacker budget I didn’t have that much money or time to see all of the attractions in the Northern Territory and wonders of the NT,

However, throughout my travels in Australia and whilst living in Darwin, I met so many people who had just come back from jumping into waterholes in Litchfield National Park, spotting crocs in Kakadu or road tripping by themselves through the Red Centre along endless outback dusty roads.

READ NEXT: 8 Reasons To Visit The Red Centre in Australia!

When I left Australia, I had a list of things to do in the Northern Territory I hadn’t done and so many Northern Territory tourist attractions I still wanted to visit, and I still do!

So in this post, with the help of Tourism NT, I want to tell you about the places to visit in the Northern Territory still on my list so you can consider a trip to the Northern Territory and add them to your list too, because this part of Australia is totally wild but full of culture and wonders!

Things to do in the NT

Things to do in Northern Territory,
Keep reading for the the things to do in Northern Territory I still want to do!

Attractions in Northern Territories Map

The Northern Territory is a vast area, about 1,349,129 km2 in land area infact and roughly 6 times the size of the U.K!

To help you plan your trip, here is a map with everywhere pinned that I mention below.

1. Kakadu National Park Overnight Trip

A trip to Kakadu National Park has been on my list to do for so so long! I met many travellers in Darwin who had just returned from 3 days camping in Kakadu and everyone raved about it!

Kakadu is a huge area within the NT which is why a multi-day trip is needed to visit or if you are visiting independently you’ll need to plan a few days there on your Northern Territory itinerary.

In my experience, there is no better place to see and learn about Aboriginal history and culture in Australia than in the Northern Territory and visiting Kakadu whether with a guide or independently will give lots of chances to learn more, especially at places like Nourlangie Rock art site.

Kakadu is about adventure too and definitely about getting in the water and seeing the water from above! I really want to visit Gunlom Falls, one of Kakadu’s greatest treasures which is a natural infinity pool with amazing views of the outback below!

Jim Jim Falls and Twin Falls are the two most popular waterfalls in Kakadu and one of the coolest things to do in Kakadu is a scenic flight over Kakadu to fly over Arnhem Plateau and witness the Jim Jim and Twin Falls!

Things to do in Northern Territory, Jim Jim Falls Kakadu
See waterfalls like this in Kakadu!

2. Uluru at Sunset

On my 3 day Red Centre Tour we were lucky enough to see Uluru at sunrise, in the day time and again at sunset.

Uluru at sunset is magical because as the sun hits the rock on its way down it turns into a fiery red and dusty orange, often with a pastel pink sky behind it.

Any experience at Uluru for sunset is a special one but I did feel envious seeing tour groups with an extra special food and drink set up whilst they watched the sunset because our set up was very basic, so if I was to go again, to make this an even more special experience I would love to have a VIP tour with a gourmet BBQ.

Or, I’d love to see it completely in private on the top of a camper van or something like that!

READ NEXT: 8 Reasons To Visit The Red Centre in Australia!

Things to do in Northern Territory, uluru at sunset
Look at how orange Uluru goes at sunset!

3. Guided Uluru Base Tour

I really enjoyed having a guided base tour of Uluru and I found the Aboriginal history so fascinating to listen to.

I admit that before visiting Australia and even before living in Darwin my knowledge of Aboriginal history and the current situation for Aboriginals in Australia was very limited and this tour really educated me on why Uluru is such a significant landmark to Aboriginal people and having the rock paintings pointed out and explained by a guide was really helpful.

Although it’s possible to walk around the base of Uluru without a guide, I would definitely want to do another guided tour to learn more and get a deeper appreciation for the history and important significance.

Things to do in Northern Territory, Uluru footpath
Things to do in Northern Territory, Uluru caves

4. Katherine Hot Springs

The Northern Territory gets hot! However, I wouldn’t say no to visiting the Katherine Hot Springs located in the township of Katherine south of Kakadu National Park.

The Katherine Hot Springs are one of the top things to do in Katherine and popular Northern Territory tourist attraction because there are 6 pools offering crystal clear water which runs from a top pool into the lower pools.

The springs are not open all year, they are usually open from April to November but they are free to enter and I’d love to pass through here on a NT road trip!

5. Mindil Beach Sunset Market

Visiting Mindil Beach Sunset Market was a weekly activity for me in Darwin and when I think of Darwin my mind goes to these markets straight away!

Being so close to South East Asia, Darwin benefits from a lot of Asian food influences which can be seen in the food stalls on offer at Mindil sunset market along with the clothing and art stores too!

Once you’ve made the hard decision of what amazing food to get for dinner and had a look around the stalls, walk a few metres onto the beach to watch the most perfect western facing sunset where the sun turns as red and orange as the desert before dipping into the ocean!

The only thing to note is that you can’t go into the ocean because this is the NT and there are crocs around!

Mindil Beach Sunset Market is on Thursdays and Sundays 4:00 pm – 9:00 pm from April to October.

Things to do in Northern Territory, Mindil Beach Sunset Markets
Things to do in Northern Territory, Mindil Beach Sunset

6. Darwin Waterfront Lagoon

I love Australia for it’s lagoons! They offer safe places to swim which is definitely needed in Darwin as most beaches do not allow swimming because of crocodiles!

Darwin Waterfront Wave Lagoon is one of the best things to do in Darwin, especially if you have children. There are plenty of areas to play in and out of the water, plenty of areas to relax in the sun or shade and it’s a lot of fun when the bursts of waves start.

I spent a lot of time in this area of Darwin City in general and I really like it, there are so many places to eat with constant views of the water and I love the walk here from the Esplanade.

Things to do in Northern Territory, Darwin Waterfront Wave Lagoon
Darwin Waterfront Wave Lagoon
Things to do in Northern Territory, Darwin Lagoon
Overlooking Darwin Lagoon

7. Litchfield National Park

Litchfield National Park is another natural wonder in the Northern Territory I heard a lot about when living and travelling Australia.

It’s extra popular because it’s just 1 hours drive from Darwin making it an easy place to visit for an organised day trip or by yourself, although you could find enough things to do in Litchfield to cover a few days if your itinerary allowed.

Litchfield National Park is filled with waterfalls and waterholes which definitely attract me to the area because this part of Australia gets very hot! Like the waterfalls in Kakadu, the waterfalls in Litchfield are popular to see from the sky on a scenic flight!

There are also interesting magnetic termite mounds to be seen, a butterfly farm and jumping crocodiles!

Things to do in Northern Territory, seeing crocodiles
It’s impossible to get away from the Crocs in NT!

8. Top End Safari Camp

I would go back to the Northern Territory on holiday this time and a holiday means some splurging and extra special experiences! Top End Safari Camp in Litchfield sounds just like that!

Glamping is all the rage these days and Top End Safari Camp have deluxe Lotus Belle Tents with all the amenities included inside and out!

A package includes pick up from Darwin, an overnight stay in their safari camp, a tour around Litchfield Park plus a scenic helicopter flight! This sounds like an amazing and memorable way to see more of the NT in a luxurious but wild way!

9. Tiwi Islands

One of the places to visit in the Northern Territories I had not heard about until recently are the Tiwi islands!

The Tiwi Islands are off the coast of Darwin and are known as the ‘Island of Smiles’ because they say you’ll leave with hurting cheeks from smiling so much!

Whats incredibly amazing is that it’s possible to visit the Tiwi Islands on a day trip from Darwin because there are ferries from the ferry terminal in Darwin straight to the Tiwi Islands!

Most of the residents on the Tiwi Islands are of Aboriginal descent and this offers visitors a chance to see a traditional way of life learning about the Aboriginal community, seeing art work, ceremonies and much more!

Matt Wright who owns and runs the Top End Safari Camp also runs Tiwi Island Retreat which offers a 3 night all-inclusive experience to see the best parts of the Tiwi Island and also have a restful time!

10. Red Centre Road Trip

Finally, as mentioned in this post, a few years ago I did a 3 day organised red centre tour starting in Alice Springs, visiting Uluru, Kings Canyon and so many other places.

I enjoyed it a lot and it was perfect for me as a solo traveller, however, I heard many stories of people road tripping through the red centre in a camper van independently and this is something I would love to do with my family, this family red centre road trip itinerary looks perfect!

Road tripping through the outback wouldn’t be easy, especially with the heat and the long days of driving but to be so remote in the red desert landscape with the freedom to stop wherever we wanted would be amazing I think!

READ NEXT: 8 Reasons To Visit The Red Centre in Australia!

Things to do in Northern Territory, long endless desert roads
Road Trip!

I hope my list of things to do in the Northern Territory has helped you plan your trip or helped you see why the NT should be a holiday destination for you!

This post is in collaboration with Tourism NT, all thoughts, opinions and personal experiences noted are my own.