Located midway along Australia's northern coast, Darwin is a youthful city known for its optimism and its melting-pot culture. Named after famous evolutionist Charles Darwin, the city is the capital of the Northern Territory and the gateway to several South-East Asian countries. Strongly rooted in history, Darwin is also on the cutting edge culturally, which makes for interesting exploring. Meander the compact city centre, go for a bike ride along the harbour or venture into one of the many bustling open-air markets.Find Cruises Sailing to This Port
The ocean is key to Darwin's identity and the Indo-Pacific Marine Exhibition offers an exciting exploration of the underwater realm of the Northern Territory. It's a chance to go diving without putting on any equipment or getting wet – you'll see a wide variety of fascinating sea life, from clown and butterfly fish to sea horses and spectacular living coral.
To really experience sporting life in northern Australia, you couldn't do better than to go fishing for barramundi, the region's premier sport-fish. With a reputation as Australia's finest dining fish, your hunting will be worth the effort. The fish takes its name from an Aboriginal phrase meaning large, scaly river fish. Famous for being able to avoid fixed nets, the barramundi is best caught on the end of a well placed line. Happy hunting!
A number of open-air markets worth visiting are scattered around Darwin, at Parap, Nightcliff and Mindil Beach. The most famous of these is probably Mindil Beach, where the tastes of five continents are available from fragrant stalls as you do your shopping. The market is known for the range and quality of its art and craftwork. You'll find many handmade wares, including clothing, sculpture, pottery and puppets, made out of crocodile, kangaroo and barramundi, as well as indigenous and bush art. If you're looking for a didgeridoo, the famous Aboriginal wooden wind instrument, this is the place to come.
The Mindil Beach Market is a great place to get a taste of the Indo-Pacific region; take your pick of the many open-air stalls. You can also find indoor fine dining in the town centre, around Mitchell Street, East Point Road, Aralia Street and Smith Street. A beguiling mixture of European and South-East Asian flavours can be found, and if you want to get the authentic Northern Territory taste, try the mud crabs, barramundi, buffalo, kangaroo or crocodile – yes, crocodile!
The local currency used in Darwin is the Australian dollar (AUD). Credit cards are widely accepted. And you can use your cash machine card at banks around the country as long as your card is connected to the international banking network. Traveller's cheques are also accepted.
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Learn more about this port city with these tourist information guides.