Living in Darwin
Darwin is the capital of Northern Territory but it is not very big, being something like Australia’s 16th largest city. Greater Darwin consists of Darwin City, Darwin Suburbs, Litchfield and Palmerston and has a population of around 136,000 people. It is located centrally on the northern coast of Australia, so if Australia were of clock, Darwin would be on the 12.
It should be noted though that both Litchfield and Palmerston are quite some distance from Darwin City, being around 30 km and 21 km respectively. The population of Darwin and its immediately surrounding suburbs is probably something like 80,000.
Darwin, like Perth, is quite isolated. It is closer to the capital of Indonesia than it is to the capital of Australia. It’s also very close to the equator. So it’s hot! It’s humid! And it’s got crocs!
There, I’ve got that out of the way.
But if you can stand the heat and humidity, Darwin and the surrounding areas offer the kind of stunning beauty not easily found anywhere else in the world. That beauty is enhanced by Darwin’s climate which has a “wet season” and a “dry season”.
This natural beauty has led to Darwin having a thriving tourist industry. The area is steeped in Aboriginal history and culture and surrounded by National Parks, the biggest and most impressive being Kakadu.
Whilst nature gives the region and its beauty, nature has also destroyed the city. On Christmas day in 1974, tropical Cyclone Tracy ripped the place apart taking many lives at the same time. But Darwin was quickly rebuilt and is today a modern, vibrant and young city.
Darwin is not short of beautiful beaches either. The pick of them being Mindil Beach, which includes an occasional market, just a couple of kilometres from the city centre and Vestey’s Beach, also close to the city. And if you want to be at one with nature, check out Casaurina Beach, 7 km’s east of the city. It’s a nudist beach. Don’t forget the sunscreen!
Some beaches have nets to protect against the box jellyfish, but with the rise of appearances by the Irukandji, a jellyfish so small it can penetrate the nets, I’m not sure you would want to be trusting these places.
But it’s not just the jellyfish. The sea in this region is probably one of the most dangerous seas in the world. It looks beautiful, it looks clear and it looks blue. But it can be very dangerous for swimmers. Remember, crocs can be found in the sea as well as in the creeks and billabongs.
Always check with locals before going swimming in this region. There are safe places to swim in the area and they will know where they are. Darwin is beautiful, but it’s not for the faint of heart.
What’s the weather like?
The climate of Darwin is tropical, that means there is no winter and summer, just wet and dry. If you take a look at my chart, you can easily see when those wet and dry seasons are.
There are on average 75 rainy days between December and May with a total of over 1300 mm of rain.
But during June to November, there are just 20 rainy days with only 200 mm. But the temperature doesn’t change much throughout the year. It’s always hot and it’s mostly humid.
Severe weather for the area include, of course, tropical cyclones, electrical storms, gale force winds and flooding.
Here’s a map of the Darwin area…..
Darwin can be broken down into four main areas:
- Inner Darwin – known as Lyons Ward
- North Darwin – known as Richardson Ward
- East Darwin – known as Waters Ward
- West Darwin – known as Chan Ward
Questions about Darwin?
If you have any question about living in Darwin, please please feel free to ask them in the comments below. Or if you know this city well, why not tell us what you think of it or maybe even help out by answering some of the questions people have about the area. I’m sure anybody thinking of moving here would be very grateful for any help you can give them.