Kakadu National Park

Want a trip of a lifetime that ticks all the boxes?

  • Trying something new
  • Getting outdoors
  • Exciting native food
  • Interesting people
  • Spectacular views to write home about

This year’s Taste of Kakadu festival will definitely hit the spot!

Not only does it offer the vast open skies of the Northern Territory, this festival brings together traditional Aboriginal ground oven cook-ups, stunning sunset backdrops, celebrity chefs,  cultural workshops and live music – all within the World Heritage-listed Kakadu National Park.

Taste of Kakadu Brownies with a View

Held over 10 days from 10 to 19 May, the festival promises to take you on an amazing culinary and cultural journey to discover the foods that have sustained the world’s oldest living culture for more than 65,000 years.

It kicks off from 5 pm Friday 10 May, with a welcome to country from the park’s traditional owners. That’s followed by traditional dance performances, live music and a chance to wander through the unique outdoor Man-me Art exhibition, where local artists lead you into tropical woodlands along a path adorned with traditional artworks, transforming the Bowali track into an atmospheric outdoor art gallery.

Taste of Kakadu Festival Hub with Man-Me Art

Taste of Kakadu opening night traditional dancing

All this while sampling a smorgasbord of seasonally-available uniquely Australian foods in the relaxed setting of the open-air festival hub.

Taste of Kakadu cook-up

Learn about Kakadu’s edible plants and animals with a bush tucker walk guided by Kakadu National Park Ranger Jacqueline Cahill. This is a fantastic chance to learn about seasonal produce. As you tour through wetlands and woodlands, Jacqueline will share stories that will also leave you with a deeper understanding of traditional Aboriginal culture.

Taste of Kakadu creative basket weaving

Treat yourself to a one-of-a-kind dinner under the stars with the Anme Garringun Ganji Mayambolk. ‘Anme’ is the Indigenous Kundjeyhmi word meaning fruit, vegetables, honey and ant eggs. Enjoy canapes and listen to stories that interweave the rich tapestry of Aboriginal night-time mythology.

Take a Mawurndaddja Cultural Tour to explore a part of Arnhem Land that tourists rarely get a chance to see. Run by Kakadu Cultural Tours, the tour starts with an East Alligator River cruise before presenting a rare opportunity to visit an important Aboriginal site that has only just been opened to visitors – Mawurndaddja ancient rock art and occupation complex. It finishes with a mouth-watering fusion feast of Thai–Indigenous flavours.

At the Riverside Stone Country Cook-Up the Njanjma Rangers will take you on a walk through beautiful stone country before enticing you to try a sample of delicious fish, yam and water lilies. The tour reveals an array of fascinating family stories that will have you yearning to hear more.

Taste of Kakadu ground oven with rangers

Taste of Kakadu dish with star fruit, water lily stem and seeds salad

The festival hub at Bowali Visitor Centre will also host a series of inspiring cooking demonstrations. Television host and Indigenous chef Mark Olive will present an entertaining cooking display on opening weekend, showcasing the native ingredients he uses to create his signature cuisine. The following weekend Paul ‘Yoda’ Iskov, from Fervor pop-up dining, returns to the festival for another year, bringing an informative open-air cooking class featuring fresh, locally-sourced ingredients.

Paul "Yoda" Iskov and Mark Olive

There is a mix of free and paid events throughout the festival that will suit any budget while still guaranteeing to satisfy your wanderlust. Other activities include taking in the spectacular sunset colours with some native canapes while gliding through the world-renowned wetlands aboard a Yellow Water Cruise, or treating your curiosity with a bush-inspired drink at Cocktails at the Croc.

Learn how to strip and dye pandanus leaves before turning them into beautiful weavings, or how to use traditional hunting tools with informative hands-on workshops. Participate in an art class, or forage for food with aboriginal guides. There’s even an outdoor special screening of Crocodile Dundee, the movie made famous for introducing Kakadu’s stunning scenery to an international audience.

Taste of Kakadu art workshops

Stop dreaming, start doing! There’s no better time to start planning your trip to Taste of Kakadu 2019. Be sure to browse and book the full range of events here, sign up to our mailing list to ensure you don’t miss any updates on the program, and connect with us on social media to see more highlights.