Sightseeing - Katherine Gorge
"Thousands of years of weather worn rock - and the clearest water!"
One of the more fascinating places on earth
The Nitmiluk National Park is home to Katherine Gorge
Nitmiluk (Pronounced Nit - me - look) is an aboriginal name meaning Cicada place. Nitmiluk National Park is owned and operated by the Jawoyn people working with the Northern Territory Parks and Wildlife Commission. Aboriginal culture is very strong in the area much Aboriginal rock art sites dotted throughout the Park.
Those visiting DARWIN in the Northern Territory should not miss a visit to the world famous Katherine Gorge. The area covers some 292,000 hectares, the Nitmiluk National Park is located just north-east of Katherine.
A great way to see Katherine Gorge is to water cruise in, it is an amazing experience, it is without doubt one of the most spectacular areas in the world, winding some 12 kilometres with sandstone walls rising over seventy meters high.
There are 13 gorges in all in the park they were formed around twenty three million years ago by thousands of litres of water poured though cracks in the earth. There are a number adventure activities on offer, you will see rugged landscapes, dramatic waterfalls and lush gorges providing an abundance of flora and fauna.
The gorges walls are very impressive and below the stunning white sandy beaches are an attraction many find it hard not to explore.
Some interesting places are:
Leliyn /Edith Falls
Edith Falls is renowned for its plunge pool witch is fed by spectacular waterfalls and has a very scenic camping area with showers, barbecues and a kiosk, unfortunately no power.
Walk from here the to the upper pools wich are open most of the year. The walk is about 9km round trip.
Another shortish walk about 8km return that twists and turns along the Katherine River ending at Pat's lookout which has glorious sweeping views of Nitmiluk Gorge.
ake the swimmers (or not) as the water worth taking the plunge into the river and Southern Rock hole has a bubbling waterfall mostly after it rains.
The trail is 58km and features some of the most stunning scenery, including waterfalls and fascinating Jawoyn Aboriginal rock art. It's not a short journey! To complete the trail takes around five days, you will need to cross the Katherine River, you can do this by using the ferry service. The Jatbula Trail runs from Katherine to Leliyn / Edith Falls.
Butterfly Gorge can't be missed with its crevices of the sheer rock face it is very quite gorge and is home to thousands of butterflies. Take the swim across the main pool to reach the pools further up were you will find shaded paper bark trees up to 50 metres tall. To try to paint a picture with words is somewhat difficult, the area is a must see in person.
Sweetwater Pool is visited by many, take some dry clothes and the swimmers as this is a large tranquil swimming billabong (hole) reached by walking the 8.5 km return trail from Edith Falls. There is a steep climb at the start but its worth it for the scenic lookouts along the way.