Kakadu National Park is one of Australia's glorious natural wonders, a place that takes some determination to get to, as it is in "the Top" of the country. Located in the Northern Territory, about 157 miles (253 km) from Darwin, the closest big city, it truly is one of the wild places of this island nation-continent.

The most timely way to get to Kakadu is to fly to Darwin (DRW) and then either rent a car or a camper van to drive to Kakadu. There are also single-day group tours out of Darwin to the park. You can even hire a private car and driver to take you to Kakadu for the day; and aerial tours are also available originating out of Darwin, via small plane or helicopter.

To see Kakadu, as well as many of Australia's other iconic cities and natural wonders, leave all the planning to us on our Ultimate Australia tour. That trip that leaves all the planning and transfers to us begins in Melbourne, then moves on to Adelaide, Uluru, Darwin (and Kakadu), Cairns and finally concludes in Sydney.

Or perhaps the Exploring Northern Australia trip works for your vacation time; that one begins in Cairns and continues to Darwin and Kakadu, then on to Broome, concluding in Perth. Whichever way you get to the Top, you're guaranteed to see stunning landscapes of natural beauty – and most likely some big crocodiles, too.

By Plane

Duration: Varies by origination city

Flying to Darwin is the closest main airport to reach Kakadu, regardless of which city you depart from. It's a 4.5-hour flight from Sydney or Melbourne; and about 3.45 from Adelaide or Perth. Once you arrive in Darwin, you'll still need to get to Kakadu (which is often closed in the winter months – June to August – because of annual flooding), a drive that will take 2.5 to 3 hours.

By Rental Car

Duration: Varies by origination city

You can choose to drive to Kakadu National Park from whatever east- or west-coast city you arrive in, but know that Australia is a huge country (think the size of the USA) and driving to the Top will take you thousands of miles in a car. But there's a lot to see, so if time isn't precious, renting a car and heading for the beautiful wilds of the north can be an exhilarating trip. 

Or simply fly to Darwin and then rent a car to navigate yourself into Kakadu, which is a trip to the east of Darwin. And once you've discovered Kakadu, we suggest you go on to Arnhem Land, which is an even wilder stretch of wilderness to the east of Kakadu. Both places are filled with scenic places and if you're lucky, you will get a chance to see Aboriginal art that dates back 50,000 years.

By Camper Van

Duration: Varies by origination city

Getting to Kakadu by camper van is a similar trip to going by car, with the difference being you'll have your own place to stay while on the road. There are lots of campgrounds and RV camps along the way and in the park, so doing a long-term road trip is part of your holiday plan, a camper van might just be the way to go.

By Private Car and Driver

Duration: 5-6 hours

From Darwin, you can hire a car and driver by the hour to take you out to Kakadu for a day (or partial day), allowing you to follow your own agenda without having to do the driving by yourself. Our local experts can help you book exactly the right vehicle and driver to suit your group's needs.

By Small Plane or Helicopter

Duration: 1 hour

From Darwin, you can book either a public or private small-plane tour or take a helicopter tour over Kakadu, to get the aerial view of all the beautiful landscapes and waterfalls that make this such an iconic part of the Australian landscape. Our local experts can help you find the perfect company to make a flight over these wonderful wild places.