• Carly Morton

My Northern Territory Adventure | Trippin' Darwin

I never had any inclination to go to Darwin. In fact, I probably would have rather gone to any other Australian capital before travelling to Darwin. But for my 30th birthday, I knew that I wanted to do a little getaway to celebrate.

I have the unfortunate experience of being born in June, which always meant cold winters and rainy days. Somewhere warm was definitely on the agenda. I also couldn't be bothered flying for an unnecessarily long time, so it had to be in Australia.

I had already travelled to the Gold Coast and the Sunshine Coast as well as Cairns, so Darwin became the best option. Thankfully, my cousin had lived up there for the past six years, so I knew I would have a tour guide and a means of transportation.

The flights to Darwin are usually pretty cheap. We went with Jetstar but I ended up booking a complete flights, accommodation and transfers package through lastminute.com. For the two of us for five nights accommodation, I think it was around $1,500. Booking through last minute was easy and ended up saving us about $50 bucks overall, which isn't much but at least it was a few beers at the pub.

The flights to Darwin are at hectic times. From Sydney, we left at around 8pm and it took around 5 hours. On the way home, we had the 1.30am flight and got into Sydney around 6am. I actually didn't mind the late night flights though because I would rather not be wasting my daylight hours on a plane. Planes are bloody awful to sleep in however, and no amount of sleeping pills was gonna conk me out. I wish I had downloaded some movies or music. Jetstar don't have in-flight entertainment on national flights so it was rather boring.

The place we stayed at was The Palms City Resort and I would certainly recommend it. We stayed in a garden bungalow which had plenty of room, a nice deck to drink a cuppa and was surrounded by tropical plants. The resort is right on the esplanade and is an easy walk down to the waterfront or onto the main street. It does however, back onto Hotel Darwin which can be a smidge rowdy so don't stay there if you can't handle a bit of music.

Our first day in Darwin was mostly just chilling out, walking around and getting accustomed to the city. It's a pretty, flat town that is super easy to get around. There are plenty of nice restaurants and bars, but you certainly wouldn't go there for the shopping. There might have been some sort of mall but it wasn't in the heart of the city and we didn't have the time or inclination to go shopping. The waterfront is a perfect place to relax on a sunny day. We chilled out down there at the Oyster Bar, having a few drinks and a nice lunch. In the evening we met up with my cousin, Alicia who took us to Lola's bar for a drink before heading over to Mindil markets and checking out the casino.

The sunset over the beach is breathtaking.

Our second day, we spent the whole day out at Lichfield National Park which is about a two hour drive from Darwin centre. This is certainly a must-see. We stopped at a number of different watering holes, waterfalls and springs. It was a warm day and we got to have a dip at every location. For a blogger/vlogger, it was content paradise. It does get pretty busy out there, so heading out earlier in the day is necessary, especially considering you can spend the whole day out there. That night, we headed down to the waterfront for dinner at a Thai restaurant. They made the worst Pad Thai I have ever tasted, I didn't think you could mess that up, but apparently you can.

On our third day, we booked a jumping croc cruise, making sure we stopped in at a well-known pub for a beer first. The croc cruise was scary as hell. Not because I thought the crocs were going to jump in the boat but simply seeking how big and deadly they were. I don't know what kind of idiot would willingly fish or swim in that muddy water but a number of tourists have been taken by crocs over the years.

We were lucky on our final day that there was a beer can regatta back over at Mindil beach. Basically people try to make boats out of beer cans. There weren't a whole heap of boats, but I think people were just looking for a good excuse to have a beach party. There was music, games and the markets were back on. Afterwards, we headed back to the casino for a drink. To my luck, they were having a Ed Sheeran tribute afternoon and we got to listen to his cool tunes being performed while looking over the beach.

Overall, Darwin was a fantastic trip. It's a great place to go during the winter because it's the dry season and it's super warm up there. Most of our days were 30 degrees or over. It's also a fantastic place if you enjoy adventure or want to go someplace where you don't have a car to get around. Most of the fun, outdoors activities are outside of town but there is still plenty to see and do around Darwin city.

I have a fun little video that I put together showcasing all the highlights of our trip over on my YouTube channel, why not give it a watch? While your at it, head over to my Instagram @a.life.by.carly and give me a follow for more cool content.

Carly xx

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