A day of military in
Darwin is embedded deeply in Australia’s military history. The target of Japanese air raids in February 1942, Darwin had more bombs dropped on it than Pearl Harbor.
The Top End has been a huge base for Australian and American troops and still is to this day. There’s much to learn and discover about military history in our city.
First stop: Darwin Military Museum
The Darwin Military Museum is located at the picturesque East Point, overlooking the Beagle Gulf. This heritage-listed area also contains WWII fortifications, military vehicles and larger artillery pieces. Dedicated to the period 1932 to 1945, the museum focuses on Darwin’s role in World War II.
Discover the Defence of Darwin Experience
The Defence of Darwin Experience is the first facility in Australia to provide visitors with an immersive, interactive, multimedia experience that extends beyond the physical walls of the museum.
Take the opportunity to immerse yourself in the drama of the Japanese bombing of Darwin as it unfolded in this interactive display. Hear from the men and women who survived, and watch a short film created with actual footage from the attack over 75 years ago.
Have lunch at the Darwin Waterfront
Whether you’re looking for a hearty meal or a quick bite to eat, Lime Cafe at the Darwin Waterfront has something on the menu to suit. All meals are cooked in-house with fresh ingredients, and you can enjoy your lunch with a view of the Darwin Waterfront.
Experience the RFDS facility on the historic Stokes Hill Wharf
Stokes Hill Wharf has a history of its own. Rebuilt after it was partially destroyed in the Japanese bombing raid on 19 February 1942, it was used in the movie Australia in 2008. The Wharf today remains a working wharf for smaller vessels.
At the start of the wharf is the Royal Flying Doctor Service Darwin Tourist Facility. This incredible facility uses technology to enable visitors to relive the drama of the Bombing of Darwin Harbour. With life-size holograms, interactive storytelling ghosts, virtual reality production and full-size replicas, you’ll be in awe of this facility and what you can learn.
Explore the WWII oil tunnels
Buried beneath the cliffs of Darwin City lie the WWII Oil Tunnels, opened to the public for exploration tours. Here you can literally bury yourself in history. Wander through the tunnels and read the interpretation boards for a self-guided experience, and view the various artefacts on display.
Get around easily
To get around a little differently and see all the military history in Darwin, jump on the hop-on-hop-off Darwin Bus Tour. If you want a tour tailored specifically to military history, jump on the The Darwin History and Wartime Experience or Bombing of Darwin Tour.
See more with the Heritage Link Attraction Pass
Follow a trail of interactive experiences and see the impressive collection of military history throughout Darwin and surrounds. Enjoy discounted entry to four exciting Heritage and History Attractions using the Heritage Link Attractions Pass. Visit the Royal Flying Doctor Service, Darwin Military Museum, Darwin Aviation Museum and take part in the Myilly Point Precinct guided tour.