Planning a visit to the Top End?

Get yourself set for the best experience possible on your next holiday.

There are plenty of websites about what to do, where to eat, and where to go while visiting Darwin and the Top End. This isn't what this article is about.


This is focused on enjoying your swimming experiences, and also what to honestly expect when you get here. Swimming in rock holes in the Top End for example, is like nothing else.

The help of some local knowledge will make life a bit easier, and much more enjoyable... and after all, sharing is caring.

Darwin City Waterfront

Darwin City Waterfront

Darwin City

The city of Darwin is like no other. Tropical, with a mix of old and modern. The city is small and it's far easier to get around by car than by public transport.

Darwin Waterfront

Darwin City 

In the CBD there is The Waterfront Precinct with a wave pool and a small artificial beach. A few minutes drive away at East Point, is Lake Alexander, and a little way out of town is Berry Springs. These are all safe places to swim.

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Main Pool Berry Springs Nature Reserve

Berry Springs

When people think of Darwin, they tend to think of Kakadu. You'll find that not many Darwinites visit Kakadu. There's the die-hard campers, sure, but for the locals, its all about Berry Springs and Litchfield... and for good reason.

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Litchfield National Park

My mate Keith from Sydney taking a cooling dip in Buley Rockhole

Buley Rockhole & Florence Falls 

An hour and a half drive south of Darwin will get you to Buley Rockhole and Florence Falls in Litchfield National Park. You pass the Magnetic Termite Mounds on the way, which are worth a stop. 

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Mataranka & Bitter Springs

Fiona in Mataranka Hot Springs

Elsey National Park

An hours drive south of Katherine takes you to the amazing thermal pools of Bitter Springs and Mataranka Hot Springs in Elsey National Park. These truly are an oasis in the middle of nowhere. With water temperatures of around 28C year round, make sure you pack your bathers and pool noodles. 

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Katherine Gorge 

Katherine Gorge

Nitmiluk National Park

If you fancy venturing a bit further afield, then the town of Katherine is 3 hours drive south of Darwin. Of course Katherine is gateway to Nitmiluk Gorge. If you've come this far... why wouldn't you? 

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About the site

I'm Sharon McKenzie and I’ve always loved spending time in and around water - which is not always easy when you live in Darwin. Living in the Northern Territory certainly poses some interesting challenges.

I enjoy swimming, snorkeling and Stand Up Paddle Boarding, and the weather in the Top End lets me do this year round.  

Darwin and the Top End of Australia is such a unique place. Many Aussies who usually travel overseas are exploring Australia at the moment.

I hope that if you're planning on visiting the Top End, that you'll find some useful information on this site so that your adventures are fun, safe and enjoyable.

Sharon McKenzie

Sharon McKenzie