It’s hard to get to, hot, sticky, sweaty, sultry and goddamn beautiful.
Garig Gunak Barlu National Park protects a magnificent swathe of marine and terrestrial wilderness deep in Arnhem Land and if it’s not already on your touring hitlist, it should be.
The park is virtually uninhabited apart from a few remote indigenous outposts and the odd station that’s managed to cling on. Access is tricky due to the need to source permits in advance, although it’s absolutely worth the effort.
The Cobourg Peninsula is a famous fishing hotspot hidden within the craggy folds of the national park’s coastline. Located 350-odd clicks northeast of Darwin, it’s a little far for a weekend visit, but well within range of a remote weeklong escape.
The park is accessible during the dry season between May and October. Permits are required for travel through Arnhem Land as well as for camping anywhere within the national park.
STUFF TO DO
4WDING: Access to the park is 4WD only via unsealed road. The road in is generally open during the dry season, but can be closed periodically. Be prepared for rough and tumble corrugations and no shortage of red bulldust.
FISHING within the park is world class. All the primo tropical targets including barramundi, mangrove jack and queenfish are caught inshore, as well as larger pelagic species such as Spanish mackerel and longtail tuna offshore.
LOCATION: The peninsula is located approximately 370km northeast of Darwin and is accessed via the Arnhem Highway.
CAMPING: Showers, composting toilets, barbeques, picnic tables and bore water are provided at two campgrounds.
Permits are required for any visitors staying overnight in the park and a fee of $232.10 per vehicle applies. This fee covers up to five adult passengers for up to seven nights. Children under 16 are free and extra adult passengers cost $11 each.
FUEL is available at Jabiru and Darwin. There is no fuel available after Jabiru.
MORE INFO is available at www.parksandwildlife.nt.gov.au