Ok so technically we have been to Kakadu, however our quick stay there and the events that caused this definitely did not allow us to really see the whole area, and thus we feel we did not really see Kakadu.
So let’s start at the beginning. As mentioned in our last post, once we finally received our car back from the mechanic we hightailed it out of Darwin! It was mid afternoon and so we only needed to be in the car around 2 hours to get to Kakadu. With daylight savings in the NT we would arrive well before sunset which is fantastic, WA get day light savings! Anyway, we decided to Drive to Jabiru which was a town in the center of Kakadu, because near there was a campsite there that we thought was central enough for us to reach other locations the next day.
The tourist centre in Katherine and our friends in Darwin had warned us that mosquitos were horrendous in Kakadu. That you needed to use strong stuff as well as burn sandalwood in order of keeping them away. Well none of this prepared us for the apocalypse of mosquitos that would descend upon us as we got out of the car.
We had already lathered ourselves up with a special cream we brought in Darwin (thanks Tasha and Des for the recommendation):
We then proceeded to spray ourselves with deet, as well as burn sandalwood sticks in a circle around us. Nothing worked. Now I say nothing worked but all of it did in a way, there was just so damn many of them that it was as if they were multiplying as we were sitting there. In a desperate attempt as getting rid of some we got the spray and our gas lighter, and Alex gave some a glorious death by fire spray.
Seriously the mosquitos were so bad that we decided not to cook dinner but head straight to bed. It was only 7:30pm! We first sprayed the entire exterior of the tent just to warn them that we meant business. Once up in our tent, we felt safe until you could hear the mosquitos all around you. We figured out that they were not inside with us but on the other side of our fly screen, desperately trying to find way into our tent to drink our blood. They did not succeed and we slept wonderfully until the sun was up and so was death by heat.
Now you understand I exaggerate a little, but you also must understand that it was seriously bloody hot! And to top off being super warm, the mosquitos had gone to bed, but their good friend flies had woken up and all wanted to say hi, give us a hug and a kiss at the same time.
After 2 months on the road we have not yet encountered so many bugs, but this called for more action. Alex got out his face net everyone! I was not allowed pictures but as funny as they look they work..to an extent.
Again the serious invasion of bugs stopped our hunger and we skipped breakfast, it was just too much effort. We packed up in record time and were in the car with the air conditioning blasting.
Before stopping in anywhere we first went to the visitors center, hoping they could give us some pointers on where to stop. No one was manning the desk so we gave that idea up, there was one place we definitely wanted to see; Cahill’s Crossing.
Cahill’s Crossing was the entrance to Arnhem Land, where the crossing is subject to tidal waters and thus salt water crocodiles. Alex and I had been told about this location, and had watched a few YouTube clips, enough to gain our interest and nerves at the same time. If you have never heard of the place before then go look it up now!
We wanted to visit because we wanted to see crocodiles. We were not disappointed! As we arrived on the viewing platform we could already see 3 floating near by in the water. The tide was low so we could see the road and a car that was looking a little worse for ware in the distance.
The tide was meant to come in around 1pm, which meant feeding time for the crocodiles, so we left to look around Ubirr and would come back.
Ubirr was famous for its Aboriginal rock art and a stunning lookout where you could also witness a crazy beautiful sunset. We walked through and after seeing a little art we went up to the lookout. It was another mental flashback to Jurrasic Park, I swear they could have used the landscape for shooting the movies for all we know, have a look:
We also got a cool photo together for once, with a very cool guy getting all-artistic with his camera shooting.
After this little visit we headed back to the car. You know its too hot when you of course have not eaten lunch the day before, breakfast that day and now the thought of food, even though you are hungry, just seems so difficult. We decided that to eat, which we had to, we would have to sit in the car.
Everything was collected from the fridge, the air con was pumping and we made and ate our lunch in the coolness of our car. Terrible I know, but oh goodness that wrap was so tasty!
With finally a belly full of food we headed back to Cahills Crossing to witness the feeding frenzy. It was well known that it was croc feeding time because the viewing platform was full of people. We managed to get a spot with a perfect view of the crossing and all the crocodiles waiting for the fish to come. We sat there for a good hour and a half maybe, just watching the crocodiles sit and wait, as well as check out us and the crown watching them.
Many people came with their cars to cross but took one look and decided to wait the 6 hours until the tide was lower. With the number of crocodiles in the water, and the number of them right next to the road just waiting for something to happen, it was the best decision ever!
Alex and I had no plan to head to Arnhem Land but it would have been an amazing place to visit if this was the entrance. Seeing the crocodiles in their home and up so close made visiting this spot extremely worthwhile, that included coming to Kakadu. After all that was the main reason we had come.
Many photos and videos later, we left and decided to head south of the park towards the exit.