Mindil Beach Sunset Markets
Often cited as a "must-do" when visiting Darwin, the Mindil Beach Sunset Markets are a favourite activity for both locals and travellers alike. The Markets' mission statement is simple: to "live the lifestyle", or to embrace a relaxed, fun, tropical paradise atmosphere. Vibrant and varied, the market hosts live music, over 60 food stalls, and roughly 200 arts, crafts, and service vendors.
Fast Facts About the Mindil Beach Markets
The market is open every Thursday and Sunday from April until the last Thursday in October. The more popular market is the Thursday market, which runs from 5 to 10 p.m. The smaller Sunday market features about 75 percent of the Thursday vendors and is open from 4 to 9 p.m. Generally speaking, the Thursday market is considered "the main attraction," while Sunday is considered to be more laid-back and family oriented. Located just three kilometres from Darwin's City Centre, the market is visited by many local buses, most notably the Route Four bus.
While pets are not welcome at the market due to the proximity of food stalls, patrons are welcome to bring their own blankets and chairs for picnics. Check the weather before leaving your Darwin accommodation; the market does not open when raining. As the name suggests, many people come to Mindil to enjoy the sunset, which occurs around 6:30 p.m.
About the Mindil Beach Market Vendors
The vendors at Mindil Beach Market are incredibly varied, from delectable ethnic fare to rice art and handmade jewellery. Many of the vendors specialize in local services or crafts made with local goods. Hats, hammocks, tie dye, rice art, massage, spices, and clothing are just some of the goods you'll find from the arts, crafts, and service vendors.
Even if you're not in the mood for shopping, the plentiful food vendors are worth a trip to the market alone. Since Darwin is often called Australia's "Gateway to Asia", it's no surprise that you'll find Cambodian, Vietnamese, Cambodian, Taiwanese, Indonesian, and Japanese foods. If you're not feeling adventurous, you can always stick to old standbys like pizza, burgers, and fish and chips. Take your lunch and picnic on the grassy picnic area or walk to the beach for a romantic oceanfront dinner.
What to Do in Darwin
Though Mindil Beach Markets are a must-see for any Darwin visitor, there's so much else to see and do in this unique city. Much of the city is easily navigable by foot or by local bus, and the city contains plenty of accommodation that allows vacationers to "live like a local" in Darwin. Walk to neighbourhood restaurants, shop at local grocery stores, and prepare some of Darwin's finest produce and seafood in your very own kitchen.
Jump on one of the city's tour buses, which circle most of Darwin's premiere attractions, to easily explore Darwin's city centre and surrounding attractions. Every species of baobob tree on the planet can be found at the George Brown Darwin Botanic Gardens - a notable attraction that boasts free admission for all visitors. The Crocodylus Park and Zoo is the perfect place to visit if you're looking for a little adventure; the park's thrilling Cage of Death lowers visitors in a Perspex "cage" into a den of angry crocodiles. Guests can also get up close to lions, Bengal tigers, and plenty of Crocodylus' famous crocs. When you've had your fill of both flora and fauna, you can stroll along the Esplanade for some lovely views of the city.
Whatever you choose to do in Darwin or which holiday rental you choose to stay in, one thing's for certain: the vibrant atmosphere of the Mindil Beach Markets is not to be missed.
*Banner Image Neerav Bhatt