When the wet season displaces millions of litres of water, which thunder through rivers and floodplains before receding, Kakadu is a fishing hotspot.
The secret is the ‘run-off’, a sweet spot on the calendar (mid-March to end of April) straight after the wet, when water drains back out of the floodplains into the rivers, and barramundi (alongside other fish) collect in certain areas accordingly, including Yellow Water, South and East Alligator River, Sandy Billabong, and Two- and Four-Mile Holes. Being a national park, fishing requires a licence, but if you’re not licensed (or don’t want the hassle of hiring your own boat and 4WD), you can join a local fishing tour, or charter your own boat. Most operators run out of Darwin, but there are a couple of Kakadu specialists located within the park:
Kakadu Fishing tours
Based out of Jabiru, Kakadu Fishing Tours runs a charter service that can go anywhere you like. From $230 per person for a half-day, including refreshments.
Based in Cooinda, virtually on top of iconic Yellow Water, Cooinda Lodge only offers fishing tours through the famous billabong. $150 per person including all fishing gear and cold drinks: see kakadutourism.com
While not in Kakadu National Park, Bamurru Lodge it is located just nearby and turns exclusively into a dedicated barramundi fishing lodge during the run-off.
More: The ‘every single thing you need to know about holidaying in Kakadu‘ guide