Museum & Art Gallery of the Northern Territory

Top choice museum

in Darwin

This superb museum and art gallery boasts beautifully presented galleries of Top End–centric exhibits. The Aboriginal art collection is a highlight, with carvings from the Tiwi Islands, bark paintings from Arnhem Land and dot paintings from the desert. An entire room is devoted to Cyclone Tracy, in a display that graphically illustrates life before and after the disaster. You can listen to the whirring sound of Tracy at full throttle − a sound you won't forget in a hurry.

The cavernous Maritime Gallery houses an assortment of weird and wonderful crafts from the nearby islands and Indonesia, as well as a pearling lugger and a Vietnamese refugee boat.

Pride of place among the stuffed animals undoubtedly goes to Sweetheart, a 5m-long, 780kg saltwater crocodile. It became a Top End personality after attacking several fishing dinghies on the Finniss River, south of Darwin.

The museum has a good bookshop, and the cafe is a great lunch spot with views over the sea.