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The Northern Territory, Australia – Hiking and camping

The Northern Territory, Australia – Hiking and camping

Katherine Gorge Sunset Cruise

The Northern Territory government has started to lift restrictions on outdoor activities, including hiking and camping just prior to the start of the dry season in the Top End. Although in Central Australia, many of the Territory’s most beautiful landmarks remain shut.

Having gone four weeks without a new recorded case of coronavirus the NT government is opening a handful of parks. Whilst we interstate visitors are not yet able to access them, if all things go well we may be able to hop on a plane in July – the perfect time to visit the NT and enjoy some of Australia’s best scenery.

Katherine Gorge Sunset Cruise
Aerial shot of Katherine Gorge Sunset Cruise

Below is a summary of some of the NT’s national parks that are open for locals.

The Top End

Litchfield National Park will open from this week for swimming and camping pening safety checks. The areas ope include Buley Rockhole, Florence Falls, Upper Cascades and Walker Creek open for swimming, pending safety checks. Florence, Wangi and Walker Creek are also open for camping.

Lichfield’s four wheel drive tracks will stay closed as the water crossings are too deep.

Territory Wildlife Park, Charles Darwin National Park, Howard Springs Nature Park, sites within the Mary River National Park, and Berry Springs (no swimming) are also now open to the public.

Central Australia

Most of Central Australia is off limites at the moment but you can visit Simpson’s Gap which includes the following:

  • Alice Springs Telegraph Station Historical Reserve
  • Central Mount Stuart Reserve
  • Corroboree Rock Reserve
  • Heavitree Gap Police Station Reserve
  • John Flynn’s Grave Reserve
  • Native Gap Conservation Reserve
  • Ryan Well Historical Reserve
  • Tjoritja National Park (Simpsons Gap area only)

Kakadu and Uluru

Parks Australia currently has a different timeline to the NT Government for opening up Kakadu and Uluru, announcing earlier this month they would remain closed at least until 11:59pm on June 18, when the status of the parks can be re-evaluated.

Kakadu Tourism, NT


Nitmiluk is closed until at least June 19 for locals. Nitmiluk restricts access to some of the most visited destinations in the NT such as Katherine Gorge and Edith falls.

Although Nitmiluk is closed Katherine residents are able to visit Judbarra/Gregory National Park, Joe Creek, Nawulbinbin Walk, Escarpment Walk and Gregory’s Tree — but no camping or swimming is permitted.

Sunset over the Yellow Water Billabong
A bird perched in a tree as the sun sets over the billabong

Tennant Creek and the Barkly

There are a few areas open in the Barkly Region but no camping or swimming is currently allowed.

The areas open are

  • Attack Creek Historical Reserve
  • Barrow Creek Telegraph Station
  • John Flynn Historical Reserve
  • Karlu Karlu/Devil’s Marbles Conservation Reserve
  • Tennant Creek Telegraph Station

Please note that hand washing, covering a sneeze or cough with your elbow or a tissue and maintaining at least 1.5 m distance from those not in your household will still be enforced.

Top five luxury accommodation in the territory

Bamurru Plains

bamurru plains
Bamurru Plains, Northern Territory

Bamurru Plains will reopen on 1 March 2021 when the Magpie Geese are preparing to nest and will continue to share experiences until 31 October 2021.

Bamurru Plains is set on the edge of Kakadu Natioanl Park. It is an ecologically sensitive luxury camp focussed upon environmental sustainability and luxury. The ten room camp safari lodge blends seamlessly with the surrounding bush and offers innovative cuisine, premium wines and a break from life and thus no TVs minibars or telephones.

Bamurru Plains, Northern Territory
Bamurru Plains, Northern Territory

Longitude 131

With views direct to Uluru and across the desert to Kata Tjuta, Longitude 131˚ is Australia’s most celebrated luxury camp. Dotted among the red-rust dunes of the Central Desert are sixteen tented pavilions, each offering connection with the outback landscape and its heritage as well as a glamorous base from which to explore the incredible Red Centre. Discover vibrant Aboriginal artworks alongside relics from the region’s explorers, a bar and restaurant offering contemporary Australian dining and friendly staff ready to share a yarn.

Aboriginal Australia Welcome Film - Uluru, Uluru Kata Tjuta National Park, NT
Uluru Northern Territory Australia

Groote Eylandt Lodge

Surrounded by 300 square kilometres of pristine ocean  Groote Eylandt Lodge is a one and half hour flight form Darwin. It is place famed for bush medicine. Cultural tours are run by the “Anindilyakwan People” who are the Traditional Owners of the Groote Archipelago. Here  you can learn about ancient remedies by signing up to the Bush Medicien Workshop.

Cicada lodge

Northern Territory
Northern Territory

Cicada Lodge embraces the ancient landscapes and Indigenous culture within the iconic Nitmiluk National Park. It has been designed for the sophisticated traveller looking for an authentic Indigenous and natural Australian “experience-of-a-lifetime,” in the heart of Northern Australia’s Timeless North. Nitmiluk Gorge is the centrepiece of Nitmiluk National Park, and comprises a system of 13 immense gorges carved over the millennia by the Katherine River through the ancient stone country of the region. More than a location of beautiful landscapes, the gorges hold great cultural value for the Jawoyn people. For these traditional owners, Nitmiluk refers to a cicada dreaming place – the place where the spirits of creation abide.

Wildman Wilderness Lodge

wildman wilderness lodge
Wildman Wilderness Lodge

This lodge offers ten cabins and fifteen safari tents  in a stunning Territory environment.Both options feature an en-suite bathroom and stylish finishes to create accommodation with a touch of luxury in an awe-inspiring environment.

Inherent in the Wildman experience is the wildlife, with crocodile and birdlife spotting a daily occurrence. A variety of tours are offered to make the most of your stay with tailored, private tours available on request. The Mary River Wetlands are teeming with life and with a naturally occurring billabong that’s home to hundreds of species of birds and animals, this exquisite scenery and unique biodiversity will stay with you forever.

For more personalised information tips and advice, or to book this incredible holiday contact your local TravelManagers’ personal travel manager here.

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