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On the road to Litchfield Park
On the road to Litchfield Park
Taking time out for a dip
Litchfield National Park

Darwin To Litchfield National Park

Thursday, June 27, 2002
Brendon takes us straight down the Stuart Highway to the beautiful Litchfield National Park.

There are two routes from Darwin to the entrance of Litchfield National Park. One way is on bitumen and the other is a dirt road via Cox Peninsula which is accessible only in the dry season — April to September.

It's a 98km drive from Darwin to Batchelor, which came into prominence in 1949 when uranium was discovered at Rum Jungle. The town grew rapidly but when the mine was closed in 1963 and the treatment plant in 1971, the numbers of residents diminished just as quickly. Now the 358 residents survive on tourism and a TAFE college catering for tertiary Aboriginal students.

The largely pristine wilderness has monsoon rainforest, large groves of cycads, the beautiful Tabletop Range and a network of creeks and waterfalls which were all very important to the Wagait Aboriginal people.

Litchfield Park is a relatively new attraction and could well rival Kakadu, although it is only 1 percent the size of the better-known park. Its vegetation is thick and luxuriant, it has natural pools filled with crystal clear water, and it covers 146,000 hectares.

As you head deeper into the park you will come across fields of eerie-looking mounds, as high as two metres. They are magnetic termite hills which these clever, blind and silent architects build facing north/south, giving them the stable temperature they require for survival. Nearby are giant mounds built by cathedral termites.

Further in you come across the Lost City — an outcrop of sandstone, sandstone conglomerate rock and quartz which over many years have been eroded into block and pillar formations. With some imagination, they resemble ruined buildings.

On the western edge of the park are Wangi Falls where you can swim and snorkel in a large plunge pool set among rainforest. During the wet, the water flow is amazing, so the falls are not accessible year round. Currents can be strong and the falls are well signposted for safety.

Location

From Darwin south to the Litchfield National Park.

Cost

Litchfield National Park entry is free. The best time to visit is the dry season, from April to November.
Please note prices are valid at time of transmission and to the best of our knowledge are inclusive of GST.

More information

Parks and Wildlife Commission of the Northern Territory
Ph: (08) 8976 0282
Fax: (08) 8976 0292

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