Darwin thrives on its outdoor laid-back multicultural lifestyle, fostered in large part by the colourful open-air markets that form an intrinsic part of everyday life for locals. Visit at least two of them while you’re here, and take your time.
Mindil Beach Sunset Market Mindil Beach during the Dry Season only. You’ve heard the stories, they’re all true. An absolute must-do in Darwin, 10,000 or more people, 80 food stalls, 300 craft stalls, heaps and heaps of live and local entertainment, playgrounds, jumping castles, you name it, it’s at Mindil. Plus the magnificent sunsets across Fannie Bay. Get there before 5 to find a carpark. Follow Dick Ward Drive / East Point Road to the city or take Number 4 Bus. Every Thursday 4pm – 10pm for the main event, Sundays 4pm – 9pm for a less-crowded smaller market, from the last Thursday in April to the last Thursday in October.
Parap Market Parap Shopping Village Parap Road. 100-odd stalls, great food and excellent craft. Infamous for its Laksa (curry soup). Lots of hand-made unusual gifts. Every Saturday morning, 7am – 1pm.
Nightcliff Market Nightcliff Shopping Village Progress Drive. 100-odd food and craft stalls, more laid-back and leisurely than Parap. Plenty of shade, outdoor seating, live entertainment (usually between 10am – 1pm), kids playground. My favourite. Every Sunday morning, 8am – 2pm.
Rapid Creek Market Rapid Creek Shopping Village, Trower Road. 150-ish food, craft, and plant stalls. Lots of locally grown fruit and veggies, including exotic and Asian vegetables, and an Organic shop. Every Sunday morning, 7am – 1pm.