Today was Alex’s Birthday! Wooo Happy Birthday my love.
Yes this post is delayed but oh well you get that being on the road in Australia.
We began the day by some very badly sung happy birthday music by myself and a limited search on Spotify. It was nice and early when we woke, with the sun coming through our tent windows and a number of different birds deciding to sing at that point in the day.
A little breakfast and we were on our way out of the town of Bachelor to Litchfield National Park. It was not a far drive, maybe an hour and we were at the park, our first stop was at the Cascades. It was the furthest spot in the park we had been recommended to visit so there we started.
When we arrived we saw that they had two walks and two pools which you could normally swim at. However one of the pools was closed due to a salt water crocodile who had decided to make it its home. Upon this news we decided to in fact then skip the other pool. It was a hike up hill, it was warm and well you never know that croc could decide to go upstream and meet us at the other pool, nope thank you!
Back in the car we got and drove to Wangi Falls. These falls were from what we had heard the most popular place to stop in the national park, they had a café so understandably so I guess. We arrived and the first thing we saw was the café, then the fact that they had Wi-Fi there and down at the falls. It was quite entertaining to watch people walk past the sign and grab their phones, however we have to admit that we did the same. It was Alex’s birthday after all!
After seeing all that we walked downwards to the falls, it was a beautiful open area with a large busy pool and two waterfalls cascading down. There was a sign noting that there was a low risk of crocodiles in the water and to always be cautious but otherwise it was safe…Alex and I looked at each other and then decided to first have a coffee in the café.
A coffee and an Aussie hotdog later we walked back down and got into the water.
The water was so refreshing as it was again a warm day. We swam all the way to the falls, which felt like quite a distance. Let the icy water hit us then we made our way back to the shore. We took our time but I would not say we were slow, and I did not look underneath me the whole time in the water, just in case of crocodiles popping up in that moment to say hi.
After a moment drying in the sun we then went to the car and drove to Florence falls. These waterfalls were down some steep stairs in such a beautiful setting surrounded by beautiful bush.
Alex was the only one who swam here, it was a little busy and not as big of a pool, but it was a lovely little spot. People were jumping off the cliff faces surrounding the watering hole doing all kinds of tricks, and here I was sitting nicely on a rock in the shade.
Our next stop after Florence Falls were the Buley Rockhole’s. This stop was a number of small waterfalls that flowed into each other, with a small deep pool at the base of each. We walked along to somewhere a little less populated and found a little pool to jump into. It was so lovely, the water from the falls were quite powerful even though they were quite small, so while in the pool it pushed you towards the next falls, creating a spa type atmosphere. Of course throughout our time in the water people came to join our spot, mostly little kids, our favourite type of companions…
After an hour or so here we thought we had seen enough of Litchfield, at least the main recommended spots, so we decided to head to Darwin. Along the way out of the national park they were doing prescribed burns, so we had some bush fire entertainment while driving.
The drive to Darwin was less than an hour, with the fast speed of 130 in the Northern Territory we saw so many people fly by us, who stuck to our WA 110 km/h. We arrived mid afternoon and decided to stay at the Big 4 caravan park, which later turned out to be 30km out of the city centre.
We checked in for 3 nights, had some showers and then got dressed nicely to head out for a nice dinner. We had debated whether or not to drive, but when I got out of the shower Alex had set up our tent and we planned on taking a taxi.
All ready to go we walked to the front of the caravan park, we were right up the back of the massive park, and Alex called the taxi company. He told them where we needed to be picked up and on the other line the man said that they had no one out here and it would take maybe 2 hours for anyone to get to us. It seems like 30km out of town was a bit much for the taxis here in Darwin…
So back to our car we went, and I don’t think we have even packed the tent up so quickly before. After maybe 5 minutes we were in the car, with the air conditioning blasting and on our way into town. The drive in showed us how far it was, but oh well we thought at least we are staying at a lovely and quite place.
Alex had felt like Japanese for his birthday so we had found a Japanese teppanyaki style restaurant just out of the center. We arrived and there were already two families on the other side on the teppanyaki table. They had the most energetic and entertaining chef who was singing, throwing food around the place and making some very corny but funny jokes. The restaurant was small, so everyone there was enjoying the show, it was definitely different.
We ended up having our own chef who was a little less crazy but cooked some delicious food. With insanely filled stomachs we decided to then go check out the center for a drink.
We ended up on Mitchell Street, the main street with all bars and restaurants, at a new place called Six Tanks Brewing. With a big beer each, which we must note cost significantly less than in WA, we sat on the verandah. It was lovely to sit and watch people of Darwin walk by, after all we had both never been to this part of Australia before.
It was definitely different to what we had expected and pictured. It was a mix between a big town and a small city with new infrastructure everywhere, almost like the city had just been built. Which in a way it had since the cyclone, but it just felt so new and strange from the big town on the water we had pictured.
A lovely drink and evening under our belts we headed back to our far away campsite. We covered a lot of ground that day and I hope Alex had a wonderful birthday. It was the first day in his birthday week where many more surprises and adventures would come.