Mary River National Park
Anyone who's headed to the Northern Territory (NT) to catch a barramundi has heard of Shady Camp in Mary River National Park.
Apart from spectacular fishing, Mary River is popular for four-wheel driving, bushwalking and birdwatching.
It's a must-see park for any nature lover.
Photographers can get great wildlife and landscape shots with an abundance of native birdlife and saltwater crocodiles against a backdrop of paperbark swamp and lotus lilies.
Make sure you visit Couzens Lookout, particularly at sunset, for a stunning view.
The park has places for camping, picnicking and walking.
If you are interested in explorer history, don't miss the 6km walk in Point Stuart Coastal Reserve out to Stuart's Memorial Cairn.
Be Crocwise as there is a large population of saltwater crocodiles throughout the park, particularly at Shady Camp.
Bring plenty of protective clothing and insect repellent.
Phone: 08 8978 8986
|Park sites||Access||Comments||Forecast opening|
|Mary River National Park||Open||NA|
|Mary River Billabong||Open||NA|
|Bird Billabong Day Use Area||Open||NA|
|Bird Billabong Walking Track||Open||NA|
|Brian's Creek Monsoon Forest Walk||Open||NA|
|Hardies 4WD Track||Closed||Closed due to seasonal weather conditions||Anticipated re-opening May 2021, dependent on weather.|
|Jimmy's Creek Monsoon Forest Walk||Closed||This area of the park is closed.|
|Couzens Lookout and Campground||Closed||Closed due to seasonal weather conditions||Anticipated re-opening May 2021, dependent on weather.|
|North (Wildman) Rockhole||Open||NA|
|Wildman 4WD Track||Closed||Closed due to damage from recent fires in the area.|
|Shady Camp Campground||Open||NA|
|Shady Camp crocodile viewing platform||Open||NA|
|Point Stuart Coastal Reserve||Open||NA|
|Point Stuart Coastal Reserve Walking Track||Open||NA|
|Stuarts Tree walking track||Open||NA|
Some seasonal closures during the Wet Season between November and April. Many roads are unsealed.
Travel 150km east of Darwin along the Stuart and Arnhem Highways.
Enter the park through Bird Billabong or Point Stuart Road.
You can do all of the following activities in the park:
- wildlife watching
- historic sites / memorials
- scenic lookouts
- walking tracks
- four-wheel driving
- camping permitted in designated camping areas
- caravans permitted in designated campsites
You can launch your boat at any of the following areas:
- Mary River Crossing - boat ramp off Arnhem Highway, all season access
- Mary River Billabong - land-based fishing access via the Bird Billabong / Hardies access road, seasonal access only
- Hardies Crossing - land-based fishing access via Hardies 4WD track, seasonal access only
- Corroboree Billabong - boat access via Hardies 4WD track, seasonal access only
- Rockhole - boat ramp access via Rockhole Road, seasonal access only
- Shady Camp - access to Mary River saltwater side to Chambers Bay and Van Dieman Gulf via Sampan Creek
- Stuart’s Tree Fishing Camp is a private area and charges apply - for access phone Terry Halse 08 8978 8863 or 08 8983 1223.
Mary River National Park has all of the following facilities:
- information signs
- ranger station – for emergency contact only
- 4WD roads
- fire pits
- public toilets
- picnic area
- boat ramp.
When visiting the park, remember all of the following:
- put your rubbish in the bin or take it with you
- stay on designated tracks and roads
- all cultural items and wildlife are protected
- pets are not permitted in the park
- nets, traps and firearms are not permitted
- be careful with fire and light fires only in fireplaces provided
- camp only in designated camping areas
- wash away from water courses
- collect firewood before arriving at your picnic or campsite
- collect fallen timber only
- follow all fishing and boating laws
- check that your vehicle is not transporting pests like weeds and cane toads.
You can have a safe and comfortable trip to Mary River National Park by doing all of the following:
- observe park safety signs
- observe crocodile warning signs
- carry and drink plenty of water
- wear a shady hat, sunscreen and insect repellent
- wear suitable clothing and footwear
- carry a first aid kit
- avoid strenuous activity during the heat of the day
- make sure your boat and vehicle are well-maintained and equipped
- beware of theft, lock vehicles and secure valuables
- use free interactive park maps on your mobile phone or tablet.
Phone: 08 8978 8986
Last updated: 06 July 2020
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