This Northern Territory road trip explores Darwin and the surrounding areas. Highlights include the two national parks of Litchfield and Kakadu as well as the scenic surrounds of Katherine. This route includes approximately 8 hours of driving time and can be completed in about 3-5 days depending on your schedule. 

Distance – 670 km

Estimated driving time – 8 hours

Recommended trip duration – 3-5 days


Our journey begins in the capital of the Northern Territory, Darwin. After collecting your rental vehicle, be sure to spend some time exploring the city. Check out the Mindil Markets, visit the NT Museum and Gallery or even swim with the crocodiles at Crocosaurus Cove.

Things to do:

Darwin to Litchfield

Distance – 110 km

Estimated driving time – 1.5 hours

Travelling south from Darwin, we drive 110 kilometres to the Litchfield National Park. Be sure to spend some time seeing the waterfalls and swimming holes. The Litchfield National Park also has options for camping so you can spend the night or if you prefer, drive to the nearby town of Batchelor which has a few more options for accommodation. 

Things to see:

Litchfield to Katherine

Distance – 260 km

Estimated driving time – 3 hours

Heading even further south we take national highway one for around 3 hours to arrive in the town of Katherine. Katherine is known as the place where the outback meets the tropics. The region is home to beautiful natural scenery including the famous Katherine Gorge.

Popular Attractions

Katherine to Kakadu

Distance – 150 km

Estimated driving time – 1.5-2 hours

Heading back north toward Darwin we drive 150 kilometres to the Kakadu National Park. Kakadu is the largest national park in Australia and is home to beautiful outback scenery. The area is also important to Australian history and contains some Aboriginal rock art dating back thousands of years. There are options for camping within the park so you can spend a night or two before heading back to Darwin.

Things to see: 

Kakadu to Darwin

Distance – 150 km

Estimated driving time – 1.5-2 hours

Approaching the end of the journey now, we head another 150 kilometres north to arrive back in Darwin. Be sure to see a few more things in the city before making your way back home.