Ben and Kirsteen's World Trip 2005/6 travel blog

K at Ubirr admiring some ancient art

K trying to "feel country"

The crocodile hotel at Jabiru

The lightning man and friends

B at Nourlangie

Interesting golf hazards in this part of the world

K: Kakadu national park is a massive 20,000 square kilometres and you really have to stay there a while to not only get around it but appreciate it fully because it has waterfalls, gorges, water-lilied billabongs, paperbark forests and vast grasslands. Its also were a lot of the film Crocodile Dundee was filmed.

Our first night there we were in time to drive up to Ubirr for sunset, that is a rocky area that has aboriginal art and looks out across to the Arnhemland plateau. It was a stunning place to see and I thought the art sights were amazing. You can see paintings of extinct animals and it makes you realise just how long the aboriginal people had been around - some estimate around 40,000 years!

We climbed up Ubirr rock to watch the sunset, on the rock you can see fossilized ripple marks as the whole area was underwater many millions of years ago. I was doing my best to "feel country", as suggested by the local tribe's elder Big Bill Neidjie (now deceased), and get the spiritual side of Kakadu while watching the sunset and but it was quite tricky with other people about and cameras going off all the time.

I had to drive to our campling site that night, Ben already feeling tired from driving, and obviously after sunset is not an ideal time to drive but it was quite exciting to drive through flooded roads and actually quite beautiful to see the bush fires up close in the dark. I remember back in 2003 flying across Oz at night on our way to Thailand and seeing a massive bush fire from the plane, it was an amazing sight.

B: Kakadu National Park is the setting for the Crocodile Dundee films and it has habitats for many different animals from birds to kangaroos to crocs. We were hoping to see crocodiles for the first time but everywhere we wanted to go near water was had signs saying "closed for seasonal reasons" - no idea what these reasons are but it was frustrating nonetheless.

Kakadu is massive - it takes about 4 hours to drive from the entrance to the exit. There are some very good abo and wildlife sitesbut it takes so long to get to them from each other. In Litchfield, a park of similar landscapes, everything is close together and I'd recommend it over Kakadu for that reason.

We spent a night in the park at Jabiru which is famous for having a hotel built in the shape of a crocodile. Our photos don't do it justice as it is best seen from the air.

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