Lichfield & Kakadu National Park
23.08.2008 - 26.08.2008 30 °C
Our first stop today was for breakie before heading just down the road for a walk to Florence Falls in Lichfield National Park which was amazingly refreshing in the humid heat of the Top End. After lazing around here for an hour we headed to some spa pools which were a cascade of small waterfalls, we spent about 2 hrs longing around soaking it up. Tough day at the office today! After lunch we headed towards Mary River for our boat cruise but on the way we got a flat tyre in our 4WD truck. So we're in the middle of no where on a dirt road changing the tyre of a 4 tonne truck in blazing heat. The jack wouldn't fit under the jack point so we had to dig out some of the earth but then because of that it wouldn't jack high enough to get the wheel off. After wedging some logs under the axel we managed to get the tyre changed over and we were back on the road, all good fun!
The boat cruise on the Mary river was amazing with lots of cool wildlife with the star of the show, Esturine (Saltwater) Crocs! These killing machines are evil, the guide told us that if you were to wash your camping pots in the river at the same time each day by the 3rd day it'd take you which is what happened to the last person to be taken, an 8 year old boy who's parents had sent him to get washing up water each night, I now have total respect for salty crocs and won't be taking any chances! The fresh water crocs are tame by comparison and are scared of humans the largest thing they eat is a small Wallaby and generally eat insects! Tonight we camped at Point Stuart
Today we hit Kakadu National Park, first stop the wetlands to see lots of bird life, there were hundreds of them. After the wetlands we did a walk through the park to view some rock art sites and hear stories linked to the art. Next we hiked for fantastic views of the Nardab flood plains and they truly we fantastic!. It was getting much hotter and the humidity was soaring today so a welcome dip in some plunge pools was next on the agenda but not before we hiked up there after 45 mins of walking in the heat we made it. The location was Barramundi Gorge and the water was beautiful! There were some high sides to the gorge so diving in from a height was a must.
Today we had some 4WD action to look forward to as we headed out to Twin Falls and Jim Jim Falls. The route to reach the falls is 4WD only and for good reason, this was 45 mins of bouncing around in your seat. There was a family from Slovenia on our bus and they were all moaning and refused to wear a seatbelt, oh how I was longing for one of them to slam into the roof!! Once we reached the end of the track we took a boat up the river then walked further to the falls. This is a no swimming area do the the possible presence of Saltwater Crocs so it was photos only here, team Slovenia were still annoying, Croc attack would be entertaining right now! More 4WD action to Jim Jim falls which is dry now and only runs during the wet season and because water levels are about 6m higher then it's impossible to get there and see them unless you are in a heli or light aircraft. There is a huge cold plunge pool where the falls plummet into which we swam in though so it wasn't a worthless journey. We swam about 100m right to the base of the falls and look up the 200m walls and try to imagine the falls in full flow, it's still an impressive sight even in the dry.
We had a long drive back into Darwin after the falls visits but on the way in we stopped at the Didg Hut where I decided to by a souvenir that would forever remind me of my time in Australia the classic Didgeridoo. They have such an interesting sound. We'd asked our guide about buying authentic ones that are made properly and not in some factory and apparently this is the place to buy them. Traditional Didgeridoos are not hollowed out my hand or by machine but by Termites and you can tell by running your finger round the inside, if it is all smooth it's been done by machine if it's nice and rough then it's been done by termites.