Victoria River Region
Undoubtedly the most scenic and mesmerising region along the Savannah Way route. Victoria River is the longest river in the Northern Territory and is the lifeline to some of the biggest cattle stations in the NT. The region is also home to "Coolibah Station" where the reality series Keeping up with the Joneses] was filmed. Victoria River District offers a wide variety of opportunities for adventure, culture, history, and nature. Its captivating landscapes stimulate a deep connection to the land and its people. It is easy to find yourself in this enchanting part of Australia.
The Victoria River Region is located south-west of Katherine and is most often visited en-route between Katherine and the Western Australia’s Kimberley region. The Victoria Region Region is located on the Victoria Highway 194 kilometres west of Katherine. Victoria River, the settlement itself, is little more than a roadhouse and campground, but the surrounding region's scenery ranks as some of the most stunning in the Territory. Travel along the Victoria Highway as it winds past immense escarpments split by the mighty Victoria River. Gregory National Park protects the area's colourful scenery featuring grassy plains, boab trees and majestic gorges carved out of sandstone escarpments.
Alternately, if not travelling the Savannah Way from Katherine, Kununurra is the closest town and Airnorth have daily air services from Darwin to Kununurra. Kununurra is a well serviced gateway to the Victoria River Region; a full range of rental vehicles, from motor homes to four-wheel drives, are available for hire to further explore the region by road.
The Victoria River Region covers an expansive area, of which Gregory National Park covers approximately 13,000 sq km. The Victoria River, affectionately known as "The Vic" is the backbone of the region. The Vic is a lifeline for pastoral properties; a guardian angel for aboriginal heritage; a tour guide for recreational pursuits. As protective as The Vic can be she can also be unrelenting in her domain. In flood her power is awesome; in arid times she demands survival. Whether it’s a 4x4 trek in the National Park, desert discovery, nature watching, fishing or cruising the mighty Vic, hiking and bushwalking, scenic flying, magical photography, experiencing the wet season and its thunderstorms or sipping your favorite beverage at sunset, the Region offers an experience for you. The escarpment country is beautiful and in the wet season waterfalls flow straight off the escarpment.
You can take a scenic helicopter flight with Coolibah Air from the Victoria River Roadhouse over the escarpment, Gregory National Park, the mighty Victoria River and Coolibah Station; home to 'The Joneses' a family who have become recent television stars after a reality documentary based on their life on the station called Keeping up with the Jonese aired on national television. The Victoria River is a mecca for fishing and produces some of the Territory’s best and biggest Barramundi. “Barra” can be caught all year round but the best time is on a neap tide, between the months of March to late May-coinciding with the end of the monsoon season called the “Run-off”.
If travelling the Buntine Highway be sure to stop in at the Top Springs Motel for a cold beer, enjoy a real outback meal, and have a yarn with a local. Top Springs is located at the junction of the Buntine and Buchanan Highways, 291 kilometres south of Katherine. The Top Springs Motel is located on the Savannah Way drive and is a fantastic rest stop with an awesome reputation as a colourful outback pub. The Top Springs Hotel is in the heart of cattle country and a good base for four-wheel-drive adventures on the way to Gregory National Park and the Victoria River Region.
Further west is the small township of Timber Creek. Fishing is Timber Creek's biggest drawcard however Max's Victoria River Cruises is a must do experince when travelling through Timber Creek.
Gregory National Park sits at Timber Creek's doorstep and covers an area of around 13,000 square kilometres. The Park features spectacular escarpment landscapes, prolific wildlife, ancient boab trees and significant remnants of Aboriginal and European history. There is also an extensive network of four-wheel-drive tracks in the Park.
Situated 170 kilometres west of Timber Creek is the Keep River National Park, which is a photographer's dream, the Park encompasses towering sandstone landforms that radiate a myriad of colours at sunrise and sunset. The area is best explored on foot, following well-marked bushwalking trails. There are two camping areas in the Park with barbecues, tables and pit toilets.
A great place to stay in the region is at the famous Bullo River Station, lying on the Bullo River, the station covers an amazing 500,000 acres of wildlife and fauna. Many who have travelled and experienced their stay have described it as one of the greatest Australian experience ever. There are plenty of activities and things to do for entertainment. A cattle mustering is seasonal work during the dry months of May to October in the area. Tourists are welcome to join for the best outback cowboy adventure. Horse riding is a must and it is advisable to bring your own boots.