The Territory’s capital Darwin, beautifully situated on the coast in Australia’s far North is a wonderful city of almost 140,000 inhabitants. It is the smallest and most northerly of the Australian capital cities and the most cosmopolitan, close to Indonesia and East Timor, about halfway between Singapore and Sydney. The original inhabitants of the greater Darwin area are the Larrakia people.
The town was established in 1869 as Palmerston and renamed in 1911 in honour of the British naturalist Charles Darwin (Palmerston is now the name of Darwin’s satellite city to its south). It was heavily bombed in the Second World War and almost flattened by Cyclone Tracy on Christmas Eve 1974.
It has recovered with a vengeance and is an easygoing place, with a pedestrian Mall, very classy waterfront neighbourhoods, like Cullen Bay and the Darwin Waterfront Precinct, with great informal places to go for a meal like the Wharf and Mindil Beach market. But there are also world-class hotels and a casino. There is plenty to do for everybody, and the bush with great swimming places is only a (fairly) short drive away.