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Up the Gorge without a camera

Nitimiluk is a great place to do a boat cruise

semi-overcast 32 °C

This is us on a boat trip at Nitmiluk, formerly known as Katherine Gorge. Actually, it's not us. In our rush to get to the boat on time we left the camera at our accommodation. Anyway, it is a beautiful place - probably the most gorgeous of all the gorges we've seen. You'll have to believe us or come and see it yourself.

Nitmiluk is the name given to Katherine Gorge by the traditional owners of the land, the Jawoyn people ('Jawoyn' rhymes with 'Darwin'). 'Nitmiluk' is a much better name. It means 'cicada place' and cicadas go 'Nit! Nit! Nit!'. 'Katherine' on the other hand is the name of the daughter of the man who kicked in some funds for John McDouall Stuart, the famous 19th century explorer who traversed the continent several times from north to south and back. The Stuart Highway and a sporting house at Susie and Michael's school is named after him. Anyway, Stuart naming the area 'Katherine Gorge' was a plug for his sponsor! The area was handed back to the Jawoyn in 1989 after lodging a land claim more than a decade before. Part of the deal was restoring the gorge's traditional name.

The boat cruise we did (sans camera) was run by Nitmiluk Tours, owned by the Jawoyn people. Chris, our Aboriginal guide, provided a great commentary on how Jawoyn use the area for food, how it all looks in the wet, and some of the stories behind the landforms. The two gorges we saw were magnificent but there are 13 of them to explore if you're keen. Boat cruises take you to 2 or 3 but you can bush walk to more or fly over them. Michael's favourite part was spotting freshwater crocs and imagining good places for them to live!

Posted by kecasumi 16:07 Archived in Australia Tagged landscapes wildlife cruises

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