Black-necked Stork (Jabiru)
From: $4,525 USD
Duration: 5 Days/4 Nights
Type: Private Charter.
About Lords Kakadu & Arnhemland Safaris:
Lords Kakadu and Arnhemland Safaris has been connecting guests to the Top End’s remarkable natural beauty and indigenous culture for 30 years. Consummate bushman and owner, Sab Lord leads the team of advocates, active in protecting and preserving Kakadu & Arnhem Land, one of the most cherished ecosystems and untouched wilderness areas of Australia. The team’s passion for the region is infectious as is the connection with the land and the indigenous communities that call the area home.This relationship formed over many decades, allows access to a range of culturally significant sites. Combined with the vast unpopulated pristine landscapes, guests can not helped being moved and reinvigorated by this World Heritage Listed area.
Price per person travelling with four passengers, based on double occupancy, including touring, meals & accommodation. Black-out dates may apply. Pricing is subject to availability and all prices, itineraries and routings are subject to change without notice. Currency fluctuations may affect prices as quotes based on AUD. Prices are current at time of posting (1/11/2023) and may differ when you book your travel. Please contact us for our current pricing and itinerary details*
Upon leaving Darwin, guests will head to the World Heritage Listed Kakadu National Park via the magnificent Fogg Dam Reserve. These wetlands fringed by rainforest are a birdwatchers paradise, with year round water coverage assuring its position as an important feeding and roosting site for over 200 different bird species, water pythons and freshwater turtles. Forest Kingfishers, egrets, ibis, herons, Whistling Kites, Brown Falcons, Green Pygmy Geese, cormorants and monitor lizards are common sightings.
“Fogg Dam is a location where we often see birds en masse, and it’s a very interesting setting because it’s a dam wall, with lush wetlands on one side and dry wetlands and grasslands on the other. Ducks and ibises abound in huge numbers in the wetlands, while Magpie Geese, spoonbills, brolgas and jabirus are easily spotted on the dry side. Some guests have never seen so many birds in one place and on such a scale. We’re talking thousands and thousands of birds at the one time.”
Dean Hoath - Guide
Before lunch, visitors will stop off at the beautiful Leaning Tree Lagoon, prolific with Blue Lilies flowering in their hundred of thousands. Guests will then venture to Bamurru Plains located on the magnificent Mary River floodplains.
This safari-style camp boasts comfortable free-standing rooms that are spacious and expose guests to the sounds of the floodplains, a dining area with commanding views across the vast wetlands, a 10 metre wet edge pool and a library. The focus of your stay at Bamurru is the surrounding savannah woodland teeming with an amazing assortment of wildlife, reptiles and birds.
Overnight Accommodation: Bamurru Plains
Spending the day at Bamarru, guests will have a choice of a variety of activities, from airboat rides to a four wheel drive safaris. A morning airboat ride across the floodplains of the Mary River catchments is an exhilarating way to see the the abundant wildlife such as Agile Wallabies, Saltwater Crocodiles, Jabirus, Brolgas, Magpie Geese, Great Billed Herons, Azure Kingfishers, Blue Winged Kookaburras, Red Tailed Black Cockatoos, Red Winged Parrots, lorikeets, honeyeaters, cuckoos, monitor lizards, Australian Bustard, curlews, falcons, Wedge-tailed eagles and Whistling Kites.
“We see White-bellied Sea Eagles, jabirus, jacanas, five species of ducks, three species of ibises, four species of egrets... just to name some of the birds we might come across. I chat to guests about the birds, and also talk about the impact various introduced feral species – such as cats and foxes – have on both the birds and the environment. I want to educate people for as long as I am able to. We only have one environment and if we don’t care of it, what are our kids going to have?”
Sab Lord - Guide & Founder
Overnight Accommodation: Bamurru Plains
After departing Bamurru Plains after lunch, guests will venture to the beautiful Edith Falls, a series of cascading waterfalls and pools on the Edith River, before arriving at Cicada Lodge in Katherine. This private sanctuary is located at Katherine Gorge, within the iconic Nitmiluk National Park, and is centred around authentic Indigenous and natural experiences.
Nitmiluk Gorge is the centrepiece of Nitmiluk National Park, and comprises a system of 13 immense gorges carved over the millenia by the Katherine River through the ancient stone country of the region. More than a location of beautiful landscapes, the gorges hold great cultural value for the Jawoyn people who will share their knowledge of the local flora and fauna as well as the ancient stories of creation.
Freshwater crocodiles, Agile Wallabies, Common Wallaroos, Antilopine Wallaroos, turtles and water monitors are common to this area, as are Red-tailed black cockatoos, Northern Rosellas, Red-winged Parrots, Red-collared Lorikeets, Great Bowerbirds and White-gaped honeyeaters. Near the water, Darters, Little Pied Cormorants, Fairy Martins, Peregrine Falcons, Red Goshawks, Azure and Forest Kingfishers can be spotted.
Overnight Accommodation: Cicada Lodge
This day provides guests with the opportunity to take helicopter scenic flights within the spectacular Nitmiluk National Park. There are a variety of flights to choose from and all offer magnificent views from the air, with photo opportunities of Nitmiluk Gorge, the Arnhem Land escarpment and local wildlife.
“My favourite place is Arnhem Land. Due to the permit requirement, it’s not crowded and it just feels spiritually moving when I’m there sitting down on the ground with the Aboriginal people. Taking guests in there is an important component of the trip because they get an appreciation of how special and lucky we are to live in a country where we live in relative harmony compared to many other areas around the world. It’s an interesting experience for many guests, as the local Aboriginal people don’t really follow what’s going on around the world. They are traditional people, so the most important thing to them is their land and their family."
Sab Lord - Guide & Founder
Lords Kakadu & Arnhemland Safaris is the only company permitted to land inside the National Park and offers a unique selection of breathtaking landing sites that are only accessible by helicopter including landing on remote rock escarpments, for a unique photo opportunity of the gorge below.
There are over 192 different species of birds that may be encountered in the region, including favourites such as the Red-collared Lorikeet, Red-winged Parrot, Northern Rosella and Blue-winged Kookaburra. Colonies of Little-red Flying Foxes, Freshwater Crocodiles, Agile Wallabies, Antilopine Wallaroos and Common Wallaroos can also be spotted around the gorges.
Later in the evening, guests will enjoy a very special dinner cruise, as the tranquil surroundings transport visitors into a spiritual world of the Jawoyn culture and history. Diners will discover the stories and ways of the Jawoyn people against the magnificent backdrop of Nitmiluk Gorge, that changes colour with the setting sun. Touring includes a three course candlelit dinner, featuring fresh, local Australian produce cooked on board, and a complimentary glass of sparkling wine.
Overnight Accommodation: Cicada Lodge
This morning guests will explore more of the area, with the option to take another scenic helicopter flight to visit gorges, tranquil waterfalls or swimming holes. Alternatively guests can visit remote rock art sites to see images painted thousands of years before by the Jawoyn people.
On the way back to Darwin, we stop at Pine Creek, a historic gold mining town, where guests will enjoy a picnic lunch.
Private Group Size: Maximum 6 guests.
Pick-up and Drop Off Point: Darwin
Pick-up and Drop-off Time: Approximately 8:00am, returns at approximately 5:00pm.
Lords Kakadu & Arnhemland Safaris contributes observations of flora & fauna via iNaturalist, the world’s leading global social biodiversity network. This platform allows our team to create research-quality citizen science data that enables a more detailed picture of our national biodiversity, and assists bodies such as the CSIRO, ecologists and other decision makers to deliver better outcomes for the environment and our species.
Our guides record observations with iNaturalist Australia by using the iNaturalist app on mobile phones or desktop computers. An observation records an encounter with an individual organism at a particular time and location in the Top End. We require photos to be attached to observations for them to become research grade and added to the Atlas of Living Australia.
This is where you can greatly assist us in capturing images out in the field! Although we make broader observations that we think are valuable to the local scientific community, we have identified the following species to track when we are exploring the Top End by vehicle or on foot.
Key species we're looking out for include:
Lords Kakadu & Arnhemland Safaris has spent decades working closely with local Aboriginal clans and share a mutual respect with the local indigenous people and their relationship with the land. Owner, Sab Lord, was raised on a station that is now part of World Heritage-listed Kakadu National Park, with his father employing Aboriginal families who taught him their indigenous language and involved him in traditional ceremonies.
Sab's ongoing relationships and understanding of their culture has earned him the rare permission to share culturally significant sites and stories.
On itineraries featuring Arnhem Land, guests visit Injalak Hill, to experience the traditional culture of the Kunwinjku people hosted by an Aboriginal guide employed by the organisation. This area is documented as having some of the best rock art examples in Australia. Upon arrival at Gunbalanya, guests visit the Injalak Arts and Crafts Centre to see artists producing their works, whether that be fabric, weaving or painting. Injalak Arts is a nonprofit Aboriginal-owned social enterprise whose members are the artists and community. Injalak artists produce traditional art inspired by ancient Dreamtime stories. Nearby rock art galleries demonstrate an unbroken link between the present generation of Kunwinjku people and their ancestors.
Bamurru Plains, the accommodation for the first two nights of this itinerary, is run predominately by power generated by the sun, using an array of 240 solar panels. Not only does this ensure a clean source of energy, but it also allows guests to hear the sounds of the Australian bush at night without the noise of a diesel generator operating. Hot water is also heated by solar energy.
Australian Wildlife Journeys is in the process of setting science-based targets, implementing mechanisms to enable the calculation of carbon emissions across all organisation types and decreasing emissions through technological advancements in hybrid and hydrogen technologies.