Kakadu, crocs and cy­clones

Meet Karyn Reimann, the third of our Jet­star Es­cape Chal­lenge win­ners to put pen to pa­per. The low-fares air­line and Es­cape teamed up to send her to Dar­win

The Sunday Mail (Queensland) - Escape - - JETSTAR CHALLENGE DARWIN -

Hav­ing left Mel­bourne’s miserly 6C be­hind, step­ping out of the plane into Dar­win’s warm night air was fab­u­lous and ex­cit­ing. Our flight at­ten­dants had been amaz­ingly happy and at­ten­tive and once we hit our spot­less and comfy Hol­i­day Inn rooms, we set our alarms. We did not want to waste a sec­ond.

The next morn­ing, we grabbed a map and great ad­vice from the girls at the in­for­ma­tion cen­tre and spent Fri­day morn­ing at the Dar­win Water­front Wave La­goon and the NT Mu­seum and Art Gallery.

Af­ter ab­sorb­ing the won­der­ful ex­hibits there, we caught a taxi back to town, where we did a bit of win­dow shop­ping and looked for lunch. Our walk was bro­ken up by in­ter­est­ing art­works and ruins left as re­minders of the fe­roc­ity of Cy­clone Tracy.

Fri­day af­ter­noon was spent walk­ing along the Es­planade water­front, wish­ing we could swim in the emer­ald-green wa­ter with­out get­ting munched on by bull sharks or crocodiles. We did take a dip in the pool at the Hol­i­day Inn – no sal­ties there. To cap a mag­i­cal Fri­day, we treated our­selves to an ex­quis­ite din­ner at Char Res­tau­rant.

Our Kakadu tour filled the next day and be­gan with bus driver Ben shar­ing his knowl­edge of the area and its his­tory as we trav­elled. Our first stop was Nourlangie Rock, where we viewed Abo­rig­i­nal rock art thought to be up to 6000 years old. The paint­ings were in­cred­i­ble, and the holes in the rocks where ochre was ground for paint could still be seen.

Af­ter lunch, we cruised on Yel­low Wa­ter Bil­l­abong – an amaz­ing wet­land filled with in­cred­i­ble flora and fauna. Our guide’s an­ces­tors had lived in the area for thou­sands of years, and he pointed out an in­cred­i­ble ar­ray of fish, birds and plants and, of course, crocodiles. Big ter­ri­to­rial males and smaller fe­males sunned them­selves and swam quite near our boat.

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