Head out just 30 kilometres from the town of Katherine to find the 12 kilometre stretch of rapids and rocky terrain that makes up Nitmiluk (Katherine Gorge). Feeding into the Katherine River, this stunning network of 13 gorges, together with the Nitmiluk National Park offers a dizzying array of opportunities for canoeing, camping, bushwalking, or light-plane and helicopter flights.
Heading downstream, overnight canoeing and camping trips are a great way to get amongst the rich native fauna and flora adorning the river. Katherine is a bushwalker's paradise, too, with over 100 kilometres of trails. Itineraries range from leisurely half-day strolls to six-day walks connecting Katherine Gorge and Leliyn (Edith Falls), and taking in plunging waterfalls and Aboriginal rock art along the way.
Other big rivers in the area, including the Daly, Roper, Victoria and McArthur Rivers are prime barramundi haunts, which means great opportunities for serious fishing adventures. Anglers can land a giant barra from their own boat, a hire-boat, or aboard a guided water safari.
Experience Australia's real outback by staying on a working cattle station. Various touring and accommodation packages are available at Lorella Springs in the Gulf region and Bullo River Station in the west. Both sit amongst stunning landscapes of sandstone escarpments, rugged gorges, crystal clear rivers, natural springs and limestone caves.
Off the ground
For a bird's eye view of the Arnhem Land plateau and the plunging sandstone gorges of the Katherine River take a helicopter or fixed wing flight over Katherine. Pilots narrate the journey, pointing out local wildlife, geological wonders and the breathtaking Katherine scenery.