Where can I see the Magnetic Termite Mounds?

Written by: Cameron Ward

Published: 01/08/2024

Reading time: 3 mins

About an hour’s drive from Darwin will take you to this impressive sight in the Northern Territory.

The Magnetic Termite mounds are large and tall structures that are built by termites. The Magnetic Termite mounds are up to two metres high and are only found in the northern parts of Australia.

You can find these fascinating Magnetic Termite mounds in Litchfield National Park, an hour’s drive from Darwin’s city centre. Walk along the boardwalk to see for yourself just how tall these termite mounds are, made from tiny termites!

When did the termite mounds form?

Some of these termite mounds you can see here are up to 100 years old! The structure has a wide flat plain and is made out of soil, saliva from the termites, and dung.

Typically it can take around four to five years for the termite mounds to be built. Even though it can take termites a few years to build the mounds they are likely to have to rebuild after heavy rainfall. Sometimes the heavy rainfall can cause the mound to collapse.

Why are the termite mounds here?

The termites that build these mounds want to have maximum solar absorption. This means the termites need the constant warmth and humidity that the Northern Territory has. The termites will spend most of their time in the mounds.

How can I see the Magnetic Termite mounds?

You can visit the termite mounds yourself if you drive down Litchfield Park Road towards the termite mounds. There is a car park to pull up at to see these incredibly tall termite mounds.

If you don’t have a car, there are Litchfield tours available from Darwin where not only do you see the termite mounds, but you see more of the national park. Check out the one day Litchfield tour to see the popular plunge pools, waterfalls, and even crocs on the Jumping Crocodile Cruise!

What are the Cathedral Termite mounds?

The Cathedral Termite mounds are considerably taller than the Magnetic Termite mounds. These Cathedral Termite mounds can be up to four metres high, with a few being up to eight metres tall!

When you take photos of the Magnetic Termite Mounds, try to get a photo of you standing next to one, to really show off its height! Be sure to also check out Buley Rockhole and Florence Falls which are only a 10-minute drive away.

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.

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