Destination Name: Kakadu Region
Kakadu is a landscape of contrasts. Beneath waters dotted with delicate lotus flowers lurks the brute strength of the crocodile. Jagged peaks of towering escarpments hide pockets of verdant rainforest. Roaring waterfalls thunder down rocky gorges to serene pools fringed with paperbarks, pandanus and cycads.
Kakadu encompasses rock art sites that indicate an Aboriginal presence tens of thousands of years old. The escarpment and outliers also shelter some of the world’s oldest Aboriginal rock art galleries.
Parts of the Aboriginal legacy that most visitors come to see are the famous Ubirr and Nourlangie Rock, where Dreamtime legend, history and day to day living are presented side by side. Many local Aboriginals still live in Kakadu, practising both modern and traditional ways of life.
As the catchment area for the South Alligator, East Alligator, Katherine Roper and Daly rivers, Kakadu is shaped by water. From November to May waterfalls like Jim Jim Falls and Twin Falls are at their most spectacular and the lowlands are flooded with water.
On these flood plains, you’ll find waterlily covered billabongs such as Yellow Waters and Mamukala, left behind by tropical summer rains, attracting flocks of waterfowl year round.
An early morning cruise on Yellow Water never disappoints bird lovers. The unique and diverse avian life in Kakadu is legendary. Comb crested jacarna, darter birds, azure kingfishers, oriental cuckoos and the incredible jabiru are just some of the species to delight observers with their plumage and calls.
Several light aeroplane operators offer scenic flights over the park allowing a bird’s eye view of the vast and varied landform.
Visitors planning to spend a night or more in Kakadu have several options ranging from campsites to the famous crocodile shaped Holiday Inn at Jabiru.