On the edge of the Timor and Arafura Seas, situated closer to the islands of Indonesia than the vast majority of Australia, the ‘Top End’ is a region of climatic extremes, spectacular storm skies and an annual cycle of environmental rebirth.  Only operating when temperatures are comfortable and wildlife is abundant, fishing for Barramundi takes place March to April before morphing into a safari lodge May to October annually.  The lodge closes November to January when it’s frightfully hot and wet.

April to July

The early part of the ‘Dry’

Nights can be cool and early morning fogs common. The days are warm, dry and generally cloudless with some spectacular sunsets. From April the water begins to slowly recede from the floodplains. This is the season of life and rebirth as many species start to teach their young how to navigate the floodplains. You’ll see Magpie Geese chicks running through the floodplain having not quite mastered flight, Spot Agile Wallaby joeys learning to hop and Jacana chicks learning to manoeuvre on their stilt legs.

August to September

The late part of the ‘Dry’

Days and nights start to warm up, leading to many tropical woodland plants flowering at this time of year. Watch as Australian Pelicans blanket the floodplain in white and marvel as the waters begin to retreat creating pockets of water concentration that draw in extraordinary numbers of birdlife rarely seen in Australia. This is an exciting time for photographers and bird-enthusiasts, as both fantastic photographic opportunities and bird watching becomes as easy as looking toward the floodplain.

October to December

The build up to the ‘Wet’

This is a time of increasing humidity and heat, with the build-up of massive cumulus clouds and exciting thunder and lightning shows. Birdlife continues to congregate in extraordinary numbers in October. With the dry season coming to an end, the floodplains remaining pockets of water are an abundant source of wildlife. The drying floodplain opens up access to new regions waiting to be explored by 4WD, quad bike and by foot and the Sampan Creek provides a hive of activity on croc-spotting river cruises.

January to March

The main part of the ‘Wet’

The arrival of the monsoon season brings heavy rains, high tides and humidity. The rivers break their banks and spread out across the floodplains, water lilies flower and life returns to the country in all its majesty. The wilderness is voracious and the food-chain is bloated from the run-off by insects, frogs, small fish, big fish, bigger fish, and crocs. With an ample wet season February can deliver an early run off but you’ll need to be a fan of dramatic tropical storms and not afraid of the heat. 

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