Katherine Gorge (or Nitmiluk National Park) is made up of 13 separate gorges in the Northern Territory of Australia. It covers 2,920.99 km² and is a maze of waterways sculpted from the sandstone over thousands of years by the Katherine River. The gorges can be explored by canoes and flat bottomed boat cruises.
During the Dry season, between April to October, the Katherine Gorge waters are placid in most spots and ideal for swimming and canoeing. There may be freshwater crocodiles in most parts of the river, as they nest along the banks, which makes it unsuitable for you to stop there and have a picnic or sit and admire the view although they are harmless to humans. On the other hand, Saltwater crocodiles enter the river during the wet season, when the water levels are high, but are then caught, removed and returned to the lower levels at the onset of the dry season.
To go from one gorge to the other, you travel on a flat bottomed cruise which takes you to natural locks. There, you get off the boat and walk along the walkways through that gorge to the next location where you then catch another boat to see the next gorge by boat.
To go there, you have to pick your season with the ‘Dry’ being the best time as it’s not too hot then or wet. We went in September and some days the heat was too much. On areas where there’s large amounts of rock – like in the gorge – the temperature there can be up to 10 degrees higher than outside the gorge due to the heat the rocks retain and reflect.
If you’re thinking of going there, pick you season!