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About Darwin

An aerial view of Darwin city

Darwin is the tropical, vibrant, and lively capital city of the Northern Territory. The multicultural city has over 60 nationalities influences of which can be seen in its food, markets, events, festivals, and more. Darwin is also known as the 'Australian gateway to Asia'. Its proximity to Asia makes the city a key link between Australia and countries such as Indonesia and East Timor. Modern Darwin has developed into a dynamic capital city with a great range of accommodations, cafes, restaurants, nightlife, and many unique experiences for travellers.

Darwin information

  • The Larrakia people are the traditional landowners of Darwin and have lived in the region since before European settlement. The city was named in 1839 when the HMS Beagle sailed into the harbour and the ship's captain named the port after Charles Darwin. Darwin's population rapidly increased after gold was discovered in 1871. Darwin has deep connections with WWII history as it served as a major military base for Allied troops in the Pacific. Unfortunately, Darwin was bombed twice on 19 February 1942 by the same fleet that bombed Pearl Harbour. During the war, the city saw over 60 air raids. And the destruction didn't stop there. In 1974, Darwin was struck by Cyclone Tracey which destroyed over 70% of the city's buildings. It was declared one of Australia's worst natural disasters.

  • Darwin enjoys an all-year-round tropical climate averaging 30°C (86ºF). From May to September, the days are warm and nights are slightly cool. This is known as the 'dry season' and is the best time to visit Darwin. From December to March, Darwin experiences tropical rains, known as the 'wet season'. It is also a great time to see Northern Territory's natural beauty, greenery, cool waterfalls, and wildlife. Much like the rest of Australia, June and July are cooler months, when temperatures can range from 19ºC (66.2ºF) to 30ºC (86ºF).

  • Darwin is well connected by air, sea, rail and road. A range of domestic and international flights are serviced from across Australia, Asia, Europe, and the US. Daily flights operate between Uluru, Alice Springs and Darwin. And smaller flights are run between regional centres. Darwin is also connected via the Stuart Highway from South Australia.

    Looking to experience the best of Darwin? Explore our Darwin Getaway holiday package that includes visit to Darwin's vibrant food markets, adventure activities, Litchfield National Park and more.

  • Saltwater crocodiles are dangerous to people and pets. It is never 100% safe to enter the water in all Top End waterways. Here are some tips for staying safe.

    • Never swim in water where crocodiles may live - even if there's no warning sign. Only swim in designated, signed areas.
    • Obey all warning signs.
    • Always keep a lookout.
    • If you do encounter a crocodile, never provoke, feed and stay well back from crocodile tracks.
    • If you're camping, set up your camp at least 50m from the water's edge.
    • Avoid places where animals and livestock drink.