Reviewed on 20 Oct 2021
Reviewed on 20 Sep 2021
Reviewed on 21 Oct 2021
Discover Australia’s Outback in this northern state with fascinating Aboriginal culture and diverse landscape of vast desert plains and tropical coastline.
The dry, red landscape of Australia’s Northern Territory represents Australia’s iconic Outback. Explore dusty desert plains and dramatic gorges, see unique Australian wildlife and learn about Australia’s Aboriginal people, one of earth’s oldest living cultures. In the Red Centre and the Top End, discover the awe-inspiring sight of Uluru, spot crocodiles, hear pioneering stories from Outback pubs and enjoy Australia’s tropical northern coast.
Australia’s arid heart, the Northern Territory’s southern desert region, is known as the Red Centre. Set up base in Alice Springs, an oasis in the dusty, red plains. Learn about the 50,000 years of indigenous Arrernte culture and choose an exciting tour: camel rides, hot-air balloon trips, cycling or four-wheel driving.
East of Alice Springs is the Simpson Desert, a stunning plain with long dunes and hardy spinifex grass. Visit in winter to explore Dalhousie Springs and Chambers Pillar Historical Reserve’s mysterious rock formation.
Travel west to see Uluru, the spectacular singular rock formation in the Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park. The iconic red monolith is breathtaking, especially when lit by dramatic red-and-violet lights of the rising or setting sun. Stay overnight in the resort town of Yulara. Learn about Anangu’s cultural significance at the Uluru Cultural Centre.
Head north to explore lush landscape in the Northern Territory’s contrasting Top End. Visit Darwin, the multicultural capital city, to enjoy the relaxed, tropical lifestyle. In August, take part in the Darwin Festival, a diverse arts, music and food festival that celebrates the city’s indigenous, Asian and Pacific cultures.
Travel east to Kakadu National Park, a region of incredible natural beauty with wetlands, savannah woodlands, dramatic coastline, diverse wildlife and Arnhem Land indigenous culture.
Major airlines serve Alice Springs and Darwin. Regional flights and the historic Ghan Railway reach other smaller towns around the state. Driving is the best way to explore the state but ensure you take every safety precaution. Have water, fuel and emergency supplies for hot days, freezing nights and tropical storms in the north.