Once visited, never forgotten. Many believe that the vast wetlands of the Mary River are the most beautiful in the Top End. These wetlands are the home to a vast variety of birdlife, some of the biggest barramundi and the largest saltwater crocodiles. Lagoons, canals and billabongs make up the waterways of the wetlands of the Mary River, which runs both north and south of the Arnhem Highway. Just 110 kilometres from Darwin, the Mary River National Park incorporates many stunning destinations.

North Rockhole

North Rockhole is a popular access point to the waterways of the Mary River. A boat ramp and picnic facilities are located here, where barramundi fishing is popular.

Couzens Lookout

Couzens Lookout camping area offers secluded camping beside the Mary River. It is only a short walk to the lookout where the sunsets are stunning.

Brian Creek Monsoon Forest

Brian Creek Monsoon Forest is a patch of diverse monsoon forest that contrasts strongly with the surrounding woodlands and is easily accessible.

Shady Camp

Shady Camp is a popular fishing spot with boat ramps, picnic areas and toilets. A viewing platform offers excellent views of the river and its many crocodiles upstream. A barrage helps prevent saltwater entering the freshwater wetlands. Camping is permitted and fees apply.

Mistake Billabong

Mistake Billabong has a shaded viewing platform where visitors can watch life on the billabong.

Mary River Park

The Mary River National Park protects part of the Mary River catchment. The Mary River is one of eight rivers in the Top End which have large floodplains in their catchments. The Arnhem Highway crosses five of these eight rivers as you travel between Darwin and Jabiru. The billabongs, paperbark and monsoon forests support breeding populations of brolgas, egrets, black-necked storks, sea eagles, magpie geese and many more bird species. Without a doubt, Mary River National Park is a magical place.

The Mary River Crossing

The Mary River Crossing on the Arnhem Highway three kilometres west of the Bark Hut Inn, has picnic areas, toilets and a boat ramp to make this an ideal site to access the Mary River system. Camping is not permitted at the Mary River Crossing. 


It's so easy to tour this area as conventional vehicles are a breeze (during the dry), even on the unsealed roads. During the wet a 4WD will open up greater panoramas and often allow access through creek beds. Tour companies also provide a service which relieves the visitor of any driving concerns. Tours operate from Darwin and Mary River.


The Mary River is an angler’s dream - popular fishing spots include Shady Camp and Corroboree Billabong where houseboats are available for hire. Fishing tours can be booked or for the independent traveller, small boats can be hired in Darwin, Point Stuart, Shady Camp Corroboree Billabong and Mary River.


Guided boat tours are also available out of Corroboree Billabong, Point Stuart and Mary River Park - but remember, be sure to book early!


Lodge and cabin-style accommodation is available at Point Stuart Wilderness LodgeMary River Wilderness Retreat & Caravan Park, Bark Hut Inn, and Corroboree Park Tavern, while luxury accommodation is now provided at Bamurru Plains.

Receive Monthly Deals, News and Events!

Subscribe to our Newsletter to receive all of the above and more

Choose to Book with the Top End's Local Experts

Need a hand choosing or booking your Top End Adventure?