richoztrek: Richos trek oz 2013 travel blog

Almost to Jabiru

Who wouldn't think of placing a kids' playground in such a location?

One of the salties taking a ride across the causeway at Cahill's...

You really wouldn't want to break down half way, or get washed...

The largest of the five or six crocs hanging around while we...


Kakadu day 2&3 Jabiru

After leaving Warradjan, we ventured into Jabiru to see what we could see. It appears to be a major centre on the map, but its not all that big. It's a bit hard to find the town centre cause everywhere is soooo quiet. On driving about for a bit, we found the residential area in town (which looks just like suburban Brisbane) minus any visible residents and saw a sign to the local aboriginal community settlement (permission required to enter). With that, we confirmed that people did live here. We then stumbled upon the business section of town - a bank, supermarket, library, cafe and a couple of other community services, all surrounding a sort-of public square. At midday on a weekday, all there was to see was three or four people having a chat in one corner. So where oh where do the Jabiru people go? That shall remain a mystery to us! Perhaps that are off holidaying in Bali (it's cheaper to fly there than to Brisbane or Sydney).

We decided to camp at Kakadu Lodge. We have noticed that many places call themselves a resort, lodge or similar and sound a bit swish, but they are mostly just code for 'caravan park' and often are reasonably priced for camping. Inside we found a whole heap of tourists, a super pool surrounded by a grassed area and a bar. Fabulous sight to see in the heat despite the water being surprisingly freezing! We went to a great slideshow and talk night at the pool and got to understand Kakadu National Park and crocodiles a bit more before heading off to bed to sleep-up for an early morning the next day.

Friday - Despite my strong intention to not use an alarm clock throughout our holiday and just go with the flow, I did agree to a 630 wake-up this day due to the very strong motivation to partake of the buffet breakfast at the crocodile hotel (the crocodile-shaped one you might have seen in postcards). We had read that those who were going on the 'Walk in the Woodlands' free guided walk at 830 were welcome to the hotel breakfast at a discounted rate. Turns out we only had to pay $10 per adult and kids free, so $20 all up for a glorious feast which we then tried to work off on a truly fascinating bush walk. We learnt about lots of different bush foods and medicines and reading of the seasons by the changes in the land. I really felt quite excited and amazed at the wealth of knowledge about the land and respect for country that the local aboriginal people have. We finished the walk at another info/education centre called Bowali, which was well worth the visit.

For lunchtime, we drove to Cahills Crossing, to sit and watch the changing of the tides over the causeway joining Kakadu to Arnhem Land. At this time, the crocs walk over low water on the road and catch jumping barramundi. We saw a little of the action but not much, maybe because we were a little late for the change. We sat and waited and hoped for more, but the kids spun out at waiting around for so long and I got more and more frustrated with them. We cut our loses and headed back for a swim, scrabble and a lemon, lime and bitters from the bar, ahhhhhhh :)

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