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​The best waterfalls in Kakadu National Park

Posted on 16 June, 2020 in Kakadu, Top End Locations, Waterfalls


If you’re seeking an adventure, rewarded with a picture-perfect waterfall and swimming hole at the end, Kakadu is your place! This world heritage listed national park is bordered by the Arnhem Land escarpment, and this is where the majority of the waterfalls begin. Cascading down the escarpment walls over millennia these waterfalls have gouged crystal clear pools below, often edged by pandanus and palms - amazing! All are accessed via the Kakadu Highway and there are many amazing sites to spend a day or two or three.... 

Each Kakadu waterfall is truly unique and different to the next and so it the drive or walk into them, it's all an adventure! Accessing Jim Jim Falls involves clambering over rocks on a one kilometre walk to the bottom of the falls. For those feeling more bold and with good fitness could tackle the hike to the top, which must be done with an early start and the necessary provisions, whilst the neighbouring Twin falls, has a civilised bush track, boat shuttle and then short section of rock and board walk to the base. A great way to take it in the grandeur of Twin Falls is to lay flat on the sandy beach and look up at the towering sandstone cliffs above.  These two particular waterfalls are visited on many Kakadu tours but there are plenty more other waterfalls you definitely should consider exploring.


In the middle of Kakadu National Park you will find Maguk or Barramundi Falls as it is commonly known, the walking track follows the creek in and is surrounded by tropical monsoonal vine forest, hugged by sandstone country, ending with a dazzling pool and flowing falls for most of the year. A walk achievable by most ages and abilities, this is a superb spot to spend some time. 

Locals tip; bring with you a pair of goggles and a snorkel and discover an array of underwater life!

The southern part of Kakadu is Jaowyn Country, here you'll find Gunlom FallsKoolpin Gorge and the Yurmikmik walks into Kurrundie and Motor Car Falls. All beautiful waterfalls in their own right. We'll start with Gunlom first; high up on the edge of the escarpment you’ll find natures very own infinity pool. Overlooking hundreds of kilometres of virtually untouched ancient bush land, Gunlom has to be one of Kakadu's most spectacular places to take a dip. 


In an area named ‘Yirmikmik’ you'll find Boulder Creek, Motor Car Falls and the lesser known Kurrundie. Generally wet season spots, if you visit in the dry season months, chances are you’ll have it to yourself. All are stunning sites and again, individual in their own ways. We'd recommend checking with Bowali Visitor Centre before visiting in the dry season as the flows can stop towards the end of the year. 

One of our very favourite waterfalls in Kakadu is located at Koolpin Gorge, it's in the southern part of the park as well. A permit is required for entry to this exclusive site and make sure you apply for this many weeks in advance as there are only a limited number given out. Venture North Safaris are one of the few commercial operators to have this already in place, making it a possibility for all guests on private Kakadu tours to see it for themselves. When visiting restricted access areas like this you can enjoy fewer crowds at any one time, thus often resulting in a unique ‘first explorers’ experience. No one else in sight, huge rock gorges, few defined tracks, swimming holes, and a peppering of rock art - now this is the real deal as far as we're concerned! 

There's also one other secret spot, a hidden oasis which also requires permission from parks to enter. Venture North also has a permit for this one, but we can’t disclose any more information on location, our guides know where it is and can take you there, one day, maybe... 

If you'd like more info about visiting Kakadu National Park please get in touch with us on 08 89275500 or email us here