Darwin - Australia, Northern Territory capital; Alice Springs

Darwin - Australia, Northern Territory capital; Alice Springs overview

Darwin geographic(al) coordinates: 12*28'S/130*50'E
Darwin population 72,702 (2004)

Northern Territory capital is Darwin located on the north central shores of the Northern Territory of Australia. Darwin is multicultural, with large Chinese and aboriginal populations. Darwin is a medium sized city port serving the north and central part of the country. Darwin appears relatively new as it was largely rebuilt after a 1975 hurricane (referred to locally as a cyclone) did extensive damage.

The port opens to the Timor Sea which is part of the Indian Ocean. It is the entry point to the attractions of the Top End and offers city entertainment such as outdoor markets, pubs, bars, shops and restaurants.

Remotely situated on the sparsely settled north coast, Darwin had no rail connection with any of the major Australian cities until 2003, when the line to Adelaide was completed. Australian military personnel and their dependents make up a large part of the population.

Darwin - Australia, Northern Territory capital; Alice Springs history

In World War II the city was heavily bombed by the Japanese; later a military airdrome, fuel-oil installations, and a wharf were built, and Darwin became a key Allied base.

Originally called Palmerston, the town was renamed (1911) for Charles Darwin because its site had been a stop (1839) during a voyage of Darwin's ship, the Beagle. The city was almost completely destroyed by a cyclone in Dec., 1974. It was rebuilt and now attracts large numbers of tourists.

Darwin - Australia, Northern Territory capital; Alice Springs main attractions

Darwin is Australia's most northern capital, relaxed, multicultural, modern and visitor friendly. Exploring the city can involve a visit to the Wharf Precinct, The Museum and Art Gallery of the Northern Territory, Aquascene, where people can handfeed fish at high tide.

Dine at the sophisticated Cullen Bay Marina, or walk through the Darwin Botanic Gardens. Darwin's military past during World War II is displayed at the Australian Aviation Heritage Centre and the East Point Military Museum.

See the wildlife at the Territory Wildlife Park, Darwin Crocodile Farm and Crocodylus Park. Natural outdoor hot springs are around Darwin and in various other locations in the territory.