Top End - Day 4

Nitmiluk Gorge- The land of the Cicadas

Today we had a slow start as our main activity was a tour on Katherine Gorge. The gorges traditional name is Nitmiluk Gorge which means Land of the Cicadas. We arrive to the clearest skies in the national park. From the information centre it was a 400m walk down to the boat tour.

The tour set out into Gorge 1 and it was simply beautiful. We learnt lots of interesting facts about the traditional owners of the land which is the Jawoyn people. They were given the land back years ago and now lease it to the NT government so that it can be cared for as a national park. The first gorge was amazing and it wasn’t long until we disembarked onto the sand bank that connected Gorge 1 and 2.

We docked at the sandbank and disembarked for a walk across the bottom of the gorge. It was a 450m walk over rocks and sand paths. You truly got to feel how big the gorges are. The sand here was also amazing. After a quick walk we ended up boarding the second boat to explore Gorge 2.

Well if we thought Gorge 1 was impressive it was nothing compared to Gorge 2. Words or pictures cannot do it justice. We were told the dream time story about how the Jawoyn people believed the gorges were created. They believe that the Rainbow serpent creates the gorges moving around as his resting place is in the deepest area of Gorge 2. I can definitely see why they believe this is his resting place as there is definitely something very spiritual about this area. We heard many more stories about why the gorge is sacred to the Jawoyn people and it was all very interesting. Before long we were turning around and heading back. It was the most amazing tour ever.

After the tour we went back to the hotel to escape the heat. Then decided to head down to The Katherine Hot springs. We knew these were closed as they were completely flooded 6 weeks ago. But I still wanted to see them. They are normally closed during the wet season anyway as when they flood the crocs can come in. Anyway man it was so bizarre seeing how high the water got to. If you look at the tree in the picture you can see where the mud got up too. Absolutely crazy.

We had a quiet night and had dinner at Stormy’s restaurant which is at our Hotel. It was absolutely amazing food :)