Saturday, 16 March 2013

A day in Darwin....

They tell us Darwin is a laid back tropical paradise, but you need to look beyond the pretty flowers and magnificent sunsets of the Northern Territories largest town, to really see what makes this place tick...


The sweet smelling frangipani flowers do blooming well in Darwin's tropical climate

They sure do breed 'em tough up here at the Top End... This thriving city has endured a hard and harsh history dating back 40,000 years. It is also the first point of entry into our promised land for those arriving from South East Asia, adding to the cultural melting pot...

Walking around downtown Darwin you can't fail to notice it's people are very multicultural.This rich mix is evident as more than 75 ethnic groups live harmoniously side by-side. Larrakia Aboriginal people make up almost nine per cent of the city population. This diversity is reflected in the shops and restaurants. around the city.


There are two major events that have shaped Darwin, the Japanese WWII bombings in 1942-43 and Cyclone Tracey. Both events led to the rebuilding of the city with an easy to get around grid layout. Even on days like today when the cruise ship Radiance of the Sea brings an extra 3,000 people into the town, it doesn't feel that busy...


Sundowners and sunset at Darwin's sailing club at Fannie Bay a perfect way to end the day.

Skycity Darwin is a hotel, casino, conference room blah blah but it also has four award winning restaurants. The Sunset restaurant serves up a very good value all-you-can-eat luncheon menu overlooking the rather gorgeous infinity pool and beyond are stunning views of the ocean...Ee by gum, it's just like being on holiday!


The 5-star Skycity Darwin Casino Resort is set on 30 acres of tropical gardens and has it's own private beach - altho' beware stingers, crocs and sharks!

After lunch, and hoping to get to know Dawin a little better, we head for the air conditioned comfort of the Darwin Military Museum which explains the story of Darwin's role in World War II. Here you are immersed in the bombing of Darwin in the 19th February 1942. A bomb siren sounds the warning of the first and worst attack by enemy forces on Australia's land, as you enter the doors close and the bombs are landing....

They warn you as you enter the Cyclone Tracey Gallery at the Museum and Art Gallery of the Northern Territory that the noise of the cyclone may be disturbing. In a darkened sound room you listen to an actual recording of Tracey's roar as she tears off roofs, causing Darwin's total destruction on Christmas Eve 1974.

When you leave these two museums knowing how Darwin has rebuilt itself twice in the last seventy years, and look at the thriving city of Darwin, you can't help but admire the resilience, strength and recovery of the people of Darwin.

It's a tough life up here in the Top End. Whether it's fighting off the salty crocs in the billabongs, or living with a cyclone threat, or just going about your day to day life in this sweltering heat - it is a fascinating city and a great place to visit....

Little Wandering Wren

Location:Darwin, Northern Territories

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