Easily accessed from Darwin, this area is a popular destination for fisherman and easy weekend trips. The Daly River settlement, or the ‘Daly’ as locals fondly refer to it, has a population of around 560 and is located 110 kilometres west off the Stuart Highway. The Daly River crossing was traditionally a meeting place for the local Aboriginal people to trade and hold ceremonies. By the end of the 1800s, European farmers, missionaries, miners and pastoralists had arrived. The Merrepen Art Centre holds an Aboriginal arts and cultural festival every May or June. The festival includes art sales and an auction, traditional music and dance, bush tucker displays, and a sporting carnival.
The Daly River itself is a picturesque tidal river, home to both freshwater and saltwater crocodiles, and a plentiful source of barramundi. The Daly holds two major fishing competitions annually, the ‘Barra Classic’ and the ‘Barra Nationals’.
Bamboo Creek and Horseshoe Billabong are gorgeous spots to picnic and enjoy the company of rare birds and wallabies. Accommodation catering to all budgets is available at the Daly River Pub, the Banyan Farm Tourist Park, Daly River Highway Inn and the historical Daly River Mango Farm. A three kilometre walk around the farm takes in various billabongs and the ruins of a Jesuit mission built in the 1800s.