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How far is Kakadu from Darwin?

To drive into Kakadu from Darwin takes approximately 3 hours. Most sites throughout Kakadu are quite spread out so a couple of hours driving here and there should be expected.

When is the best time to travel?

Weather in the Northern Territory is largely dictated by the annual monsoon cycle. While November to April is referred to as the ‘wet’, and May to October is the ‘dry’ season; in the vast expanse of Kakadu National Park, the local Aboriginal people recognise six different seasons.

The wet season runs from November until April, and is characterised by high humidity, monsoonal rains and storms. Temperatures typically range from a minimum of 25°C to a maximum of 33°C.

From October to December is the season of spectacular electrical storms, an event eagerly awaited by locals who watch the show from beachside restaurants and bars.

Tours and attractions operate year round in the Top End, however, weather conditions during the wet season can restrict travel to some areas, and some destinations may be closed between December and May.

January and February is considered by many as the most beautiful time of year in the Top End. Sunny days and afternoon storms refresh the landscape, and animals and plants flourish. The rivers and waterfalls are flowing and the countryside turns a lush green. One of the best ways to appreciate these natural wonders is from the air on a scenic flight.

As the heavy rains begin to ease in March and April, the rivers subside and the transition from wet to dry begins. Fish are plentiful in the rivers and billabongs. This is considered the prime fishing time and anglers flock to the tidal rivers around Darwin to catch barramundi.

The ‘dry’ season, from May until October, is characterised by warm, dry sunny days and cool nights. Temperatures typically range from 21°C to 32°C, and humidity levels are much lower.

Darwin really comes alive at this time of year as everyone makes the most of the clear skies and heads outdoors. This is a great time to recline in a deckchair and watch a movie under the stars at the open-air Deckchair Cinema; or watch the sunset over the Indian Ocean after visiting the famous Mindil Beach Markets. It is also the perfect time to explore the more remote areas of the region that can be off-limits during the wet. The Darwin Festival, the Top End’s annual celebration of arts and culture, is held in August.

Birds in their millions converge on the diminishing waterholes and rivers in Kakadu National Park, Litchfield National Park and the Mary River wetlands during August and September. Birdwatchers come from around the world to see up to a third of Australia’s bird species congregate in one place at the Fogg Dam Conservation Reserve.

Relatively cool weather arrives in May, and until July, nights are crisp and the mornings are misty with temperatures ranging from 17-23 °C during the night and a pleasant 29-32°C degrees during the day.

Information courtesy of

What do I need to supply on tour?

Water Bottle:

Consider bringing your own water bottle to refill along the way. We recommend at least a 1.5litre capacity. The sale of bottled water contributes to an enormous environmental problem around the world. In addition to the water in bottles, the production of a 1 litre plastic bottle takes 2 litres of water and 200ml of oil. A large proportion end up in limited landfill or discarded in waterways and natural environments. Iced cold water is supplied for refilling water bottle throughout the tour.

Batteries/Power Source:

Most of our trips have access to power to recharge batteries for phones and cameras every couple of days. We always recommend that you carry an extra battery for your camera, just in case. Your vehicle will be equipped with a 12-volt “cigarette lighter” socket, which may be used at the crew’s discretion; however, do bear in mind that only one piece of equipment can be charged at a time, and it will not be allowed if there is a risk of running the vehicle’s batteries low. We suggest you bring a mix of normal and rechargeable batteries and the appropriate recharging unit. Most campsites have electricity for charging batteries at the toilet blocks; However, as our camps are a short walk from them, it is advised not to leave them behind.

Headlight or torch:

A headlamp or torch is recommended for navigating around your accommodation at night. Some properties have limited lighting and are powered by generators that switch off at a certain time. It’s a good idea to bring a headlamp or torch.

Do I need to bring my own camping equipment?

We supply all the necessary equipment to make your camping experience as comfortable as possible.

We provide swags, tents, camp chairs, cooking equipment, tables, lamps/lights, torches and eskies.

What is the group size of your tours?

12-16 pax

Do you take children?

The minimum age recommended for our tours is 15 years of age, however, will take children as young as 8 years

What should I wear on tour?

Daytime temperatures and humidity can be extreme from October to March, with temperatures over 35 degrees Celsius. Nighttime temperatures can also be high at this time of year.

We recommend bringing loose, cool cotton clothing to protect yourself from the harsh sun. A sun hat, sunscreen, swimwear, towel, sturdy walking shoes and sunglasses are necessary.

Daytime temperatures can be extreme from October to March, with temperatures over 40 degrees Celsius. Please bring a large refillable water bottle. We strongly recommend the use of dehydration salts and sports drinks to combat dehydration during extreme heat.

How fit do I need to be?

Kakadu, Arnhemland and Litchfield are rough and rugged stone bush country. In many places we access and those listed in the itinerary, there are cleared walking tracks but not boardwalks or handrails. Some walks are over slippery and uneven ground, and we will always advise caution when walking over these surfaces. A reasonable level of fitness & stable footing is required for most locations in these itineraries and to make the most of the experience. Territory Expeditions has designed these tours for the fit and active.

To get the most out of this trip, you need to be prepared for walks of between 3 and 8 km on some days. This may be on rough ground, and perhaps your feet will get wet in rivers and creeks. From October to March, you will experience temperatures of over 35 degrees Celsius (and sometimes well into the 40s), so be prepared to endure extra physical stress due to the heat at these times, especially while on walks.

These extreme outside temperatures can also stress the air-conditioning units within our vehicles, making travelling uncomfortable. Your tour guide will provide regular breaks and information to help you stay well-hydrated.

What sort of vehicles will I be travelling in?

You will be travelling in a vehicle specifically designed and built for Australian outback conditions. All our vehicles are 4WD, air-conditioned for your comfort, and have iPhone connections and large panoramic windows for uninterrupted sightseeing.

What is your cancellation policy?

Travel insurance is highly recommended for all our trips, even for Australian travellers. At a minimum, we require that you are covered for medical expenses, including emergency repatriation. We strongly recommend that the policy also covers personal liability, cancellation, curtailment, and loss of luggage, as well as personal effects.

Tour Departures:

If you cancel some or all portions of your tour/s cancellation fees may apply. A cancellation will only be effective when we receive written confirmation of the cancellation.

If you cancel a tour:

    • 30 days or more prior to departure, we retain the deposit.
    • Between 8 and 29 days prior to departure, we will retain 50% of the total booking cost.
    • 7 days or less prior to departure, we will retain 100% of the total booking cost.

 Private Charters:

  • All tours booked with an agent may result in an additional fee. If you need to cancel your tour, you should contact your booking agent.
  • Per Charter: If you cancel part or all portions of your charter booking, cancellation fees may apply. A cancellation will only be effective when we receive written confirmation of the cancellation.

If you cancel a charter:

  •  30 days or more prior to departure, we will retain the deposit
  • Between 15 and 29 days prior to departure, we will retain 50% of the total booking cost.
  • 14 days or less prior to departure, we may retain 100% paid by you in connection with the booking.

Per Charter Passenger: If one or more passengers cancel off a charter booking, cancellation fees may apply. If one or more passengers cancel off a charter trip:

  • 30 days or more prior to departure, the final payment will be amended to reflect the exact passenger numbers.
  • Between 15 and 29 days prior to departure, we will retain 50% of the total booking cost for each cancelled passenger.
  • 14 days or less prior to departure, we may retain 100% of your payment in connection with the booking for each cancelled passenger.

What about luggage limits?

Pack only your bare essentials. Due to limited space and strict road laws limiting vehicle gross weight, you are required to limit your luggage to one small to medium-sized soft bag or backpack (max 10 kg) and a small daypack, which can be carried inside the vehicle. Extra luggage can usually be stored at your hotel.

Are meals included in my tour?

Hands-on tours!

On most days, breakfast, lunch, and dinner will be included. Your leader will prepare most of the meals while you are on tour, but you will have the opportunity to assist with daily activities such as setting up camp, helping prepare meals, and clearing dishes. None of this is difficult; however, many hands make light work, and any assistance provided to the crew is always much appreciated. Most people agree that this activity helps you feel less of a tourist and more of an explorer.

Please budget for approximately AUD 100.00 for additional meals and expenses while on your trip. These may include ice cream, souvenirs, or the purchase of a refreshing ale for the evening’s campfire. If purchasing alcohol, we recommend buying it in Darwin for a better price and variety. There is a drinks esky provided on the vehicle. Our suggestion is based on past traveller feedback, but you may choose to spend more or less.

I have special dietary needs - are you able to cater for me?

Passengers with special meal requirements must ensure they or their travel agent inform Territory Expeditions of this when booking. Food for the trip is purchased prior to commencement, and special requirements cannot be accommodated after departing. Vegetarians, celiacs, or those with any special meal requirements may need to provide additional assistance to the leader in meal preparation.

What type of accommodation will I get?

These are the different types of accommodation Territory Expeditions offers. The type indicated will be for each tour and for each night.

Permanent Safari Tent (twin share with shared facilities)

Air-conditioned dorm accommodation

Bathroom facilities are shared and are located a short walking distance from camp/accommodation.

Will I have phone reception while on tour?

Mobile phone reception is available around all major service centers within Kakadu, Litchfield, Arnhemland, and Mardugal campground. Every vehicle has a Satellite phone for emergencies.

The most important thing to remember is that you’re on holiday, and that’s a great reason not to have a phone.

Can I smoke or drink in the vehicle?

Smoking and drinking alcohol is not prohibited inside a tourist vehicle under Australian Government regulation.

Drinking alcohol is permitted at the campsite; however, the guide has the right to limit the amount consumed.

Under no circumstance will illegal drugs be allowed in the vehicle. The guide can remove and terminate the tour for any persons found with illegal substances. This will result in no refunds, and they will be responsible for travel costs.

Territory Expeditions will endeavour to create an enjoyable environment for all our passengers. Therefore, we reserve the right to remove any persons who threaten the safety of the guide or fellow passengers, physically or verbally. This will result in no refunds, and they will be responsible for their travel costs.

Let us share with you the complete Kakadu & Top End Northern Territory experience