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Touring Northern Australia's Top End

James Fisher A raised safari bungalow at the Bamurru Plains bush camp, in northern Australia.

Photo: James Fisher

The stretch of northern Australia known colloquially as the Top End covers more than a half-million square miles within the neighboring states of Western Australia and the Northern Territory, between the pearl-farming town of Broome on the Indian Ocean and the subtropical Cape York Peninsula. It encompasses some of the world’s least populated but most climatically diverse regions—saltwater estuaries, arid savanna, hidden thermal springs, and impassable peaks. Film director Baz Luhrmann, who was raised in rural New South Wales, recently spent more than a month in the Top End (as well as time in Sydney) shooting Australia, a pre–World War II epic set on the cattle ranches of the outback, starring Hugh Jackman and Nicole Kidman.

Read the article

Destinations: Australia · Western Australia

Inspired by: Investigating Australia’s Top End Outback — by Shane Mitchell, Published Sep. 2008

Hotels (4)

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    Kimberley Grande

    Recently updated hotel in a gateway town to the East Kimberley outback.

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    Home Valley Station

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    Bungle Bungle Wilderness Lodge

    Tent cabins, en-suite baths, and an open air dining room. Closed during the wet season.

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    Bamurru Plains

Activities (3)

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    Wundargoodie Aboriginal Safaris

    Rock-art tours and extended camping expeditions with Gidja guides to the remote Mitchell Plateau, in North Kimberley.

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    Waringarri Aboriginal Arts

    Studio with work by Mignonette Carlton and Daisy Bitting.

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    Jirrawun Arts

    The modern gallery represents top Western Australian artists, including Peggy Patrick and Phyllis Thomas.

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