theonlywayismelbourne

Blogging from Down Under

An Awesome Aussie Adventure – Kakadu – Yellow River Wetlands Tour

We arrived at our accommodation in Kakadu pretty late.

We stayed at Gagudju Lodge in Cooinda, there are not many accommodation options in Kakadu, if you don’t want to camp (no thanks with 2 small kids)! You are pretty limited to the lodges or to the Crocodile Hotel in Jabiru.

The lodges suited us just fine, they were just what we needed, and they were cheaper than the hotel so everyone is a winner.

The lodges also incorporated a camp site and there was a swimming pool on site as well as two restaurants, serving good quality food all day. I had an amazingly delicious Kangaroo steak with sweet potato mash.image
Being in a lodge with outdoor space suited us much better than being stuck in a hotel room.
With the added bonus that the lodges were perfectly placed for day trips. The bus stop for the ‘yellow river wetlands tour’ that we did, was right outside, making it easy to get there on time with the kids. Our family is not known for our timekeeping!

It was an early start the next morning (for us). To ensure that we took the second tour of the day before the heat became too much to bear. There is also a very early morning sunrise tour and while that would have been amazing to see and watch the natural world waking up. It was always going to be next to impossible to get us out of the door by 5.30am.

Our trip was at 9am and was a 2 hour trip along the Yellow River Billabong.
Yellow River Billabong is the last Billabong before Jim Jim falls, an amazing waterfall that we unfortunately didn’t get to. Apparently it is accessible by 4wd and nigh on impossible to get to during the wet season but breathtaking to see if you do get there.

Back to the tour, our guide told us that the Moorambull clan are the traditional owners of the land. The area that we were going through included South Alligator River, very near to where the gentleman was killed by a croc recently.

Husb was totally in his element, twitching here there and everywhere, don’t worry he wasn’t suffering from involuntary body spasms, he was of course bird spotting like good un with his trusty book.

He and the guide struck up a bit of a rapport as she checked her identifications in husbs book and I am reliably informed that there was a plethora of wildlife around including Magpie Geese and whistling ducks. In fact there are 280 bird species in Kakadu which accounts for 1/3 of Australia’s whole bird population.

Yellow River BillabongI say that I was informed because I was busy attempting to stop the Bear have a meltdown on the boat as he was desperate to get off and kept leaning a touch too far over the side of the boat for my liking and then making sudden lunging bids for freedom in the middle of crocodile infested waters –image I am not quite sure where exactly he thought he was going to go but in any event it didn’t make for the most relaxing trip for me. Thankfully Flo-Bear was safely strapped into her car seat capsule so at least I didn’t have to try and contain them both at the same time.

In addition to the amazing array of bird life there was also some beautiful plant life on the Billabong including a gorgeous display of Lotus lillypads, snow flake lilies and Nimfaya lilies.
image

We also managed to see loads of crocs at really close quarters. It was much better to see them naturally instead of jumping for pieces of meat, also much scarier due to aforesaid meltdown and a smaller boat with completely open sides. Nice!

image

As we travelled along the river we stopped to looked out at the landscape before us. imageAll of the land as far as the eye could see would be completely covered in water during the wet season, hard to believe really.

You can read my other posts about our time in Darwin and the Northern Territory

Here

And here

And there’s plenty more to come 🙂

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