Can you swim at Litchfield National Park?

Can you swim at Litchfield National Park?

Written by: Cameron Ward

Published: 09/28/2022

Reading time: 3 mins

Given its location in Australia’s Top End – you’re wise to ask this question! Saltwater crocodiles call this part of the country home, so it’s always best to err on the side of caution when visiting any National Park around Darwin.

Fortunately for anyone visiting, you can take refuge from the heat of the Northern Territory at several swimming holes throughout Litchfield National Park. These swimming holes are the perfect place to cool off.

Litchfield swimming holes

  • Florence Falls

    If you type Litchfield into Google, you’ll probably get a photo of Florence Falls. A beautiful plunge pool is serviced by two cascading waterfalls, and you can spend hours lazing about in the water and cooling off from the heat. The viewing platform is accessible with a short walk from the carpark, but you’ll need to walk a little further to reach the valley and the plunge pool below.

  • Buley Rockhole

    Great for the kids – Buley has shallow rock pools to wade in and relax in. It is a lot smaller than other swim spots, so you may find it crowded at times. You can relax in the shallows as you take in the impressive scenery that surrounds you in all directions.

  • Wangi Falls

    Surrounded by vivid green forest, Wangi Falls service the largest and most impressive swimming hole in all of Litchfield. It’s one of the most popular as the sheer size allows you to swim without feeling crowded. You’re bound to get some great snaps here too! You’ll also find this area has picnic tables and a kiosk – so you can really settle in here for the afternoon.

  • Cascades

    Another one the kids will love cooling off in. Trickier to reach but totally worth it. Rocky surfaces and a couple of waterfall drops to explore. The paths around the cascades are unstable and rocky – so be prepared!

Getting to Litchfield National Park

From Darwin, you can join a tour where an experienced guide/driver will bring you into the park. Alternatively, you can drive yourself! You will need a 4WD to get the most of out of the Northern Territory. If you plan on camping in the area, be sure to look into permits for this ahead of time.

Litchfield is a pleasant and straightforward 2-hour drive from Darwin. You can stop along the way to join a crocodile cruise – a much better way to see the crocs from the safety of a large boat.

When to visit Litchfield National Park

The dry season – from May to October – is absolutely the best time to visit. Hardly any rain will mean all tracks and majority of the pools will be open. The air will be less humid – but still hot!

If you are visiting in the wet season – from November to April – you’ll get a different yet breathtaking experience. Due to the heavy rainfall in this time, the waterfalls will be far more forceful and impressive. Swimming is a little riskier in the wet season, so be sure to check signage wherever you go. Visiting Litchfield during wet season will also mean less travellers to compete with, and potentially more affordable accommodation!

Be croc safe and always check signage wherever you go before jumping into any water in the Northern Territory. Though they are predators, understanding where they are is best practice. You can certainly enjoy this spectacular area of Australia without fear.

Cameron Ward
Cameron Ward
Managing Director at Sightseeing Tours Australia

Cameron Ward turned his travel passion into a thriving Australian tourism business. Before he co-founded his own business, Sightseeing Tours Australia, he was enjoying being a Melbourne tour guide. Even now, Cameron delights in helping visitors from all around the world get the most out of their incredible Australian trip. You’ll see Cameron leading tours or writing about his favourite Australian places where he shares his local insights.