To really get to know Kakadu’s wetlands you really have to get out there… here are the pick of the cruise tours in the national park.
Yellow Water Cruises
This iconic Kakadu tour operates year-round out of Cooinda, which means the landscape is ever-changing, depending on the season. With several large vessels carrying a lot of passengers, you won’t find it an intimate experience but the wetlands are duly spectacular, the nature on display unfailingly spectacular and the driver knowledgeable. Take the tour at dawn or dusk when the wildlife is more active. Two hours for $90–$99; see www.kakadutourism.com/tours-activities/yellow-water-cruises/
Guluyambi cultural cruise
From a small dock not far from Ubirr, you will venture to the Arnhem Land side of the East Alligator River on this small covered boat cruise. This Aboriginal reserve is otherwise inaccessible to tourists, unless you have a permit. Expect to see some impressively large crocodiles, sandy beaches, ancient rock art and a spear-throwing demonstration. Guide Robert Namarnyilk is an acclaimed Aboriginal artist who has sold his paintings internationally. Tour takes 1 hour and 45 minutes and costs $76; see kakaduculturaltours.com.au
The Kakadu Guide: Everything you ever wanted to know